The NDA for performance reviews of VEGA 64 and VEGA 56 are lifted at  9AM EDT on Monday the 14th of August. The Unboxing NDA was lifted yesterday so we got to see what these cards look like (They look the same as at SIGGRAPH).

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Currently the VEGA 56 is expected to compete with the Nvidia 1070 and VEGA 64 is expected to compete with the Nvidia 1080. AMD moved forward the NDA of the VEGA 56 to be inline with VEGA 64. They also moved the release date of AMD VEGA 56 to the 28/8/2017. This change is likely due to rumours that the VEGA 56 has the potential to be the Nvidia 1070 killer whilst the VEGA 64 may not match up as favourably with the Nvidia 1080.

So what can we expect from these cards?

Lets start with what we absolutely know before we go with what is rumoured and lets get the bad out the way first. These cards will be power hungry. Compared to the Nvidia cards there is no question that these cards are drawing more watts to achieve similar performance (300+ watts for VEGA 64 WC if you include the whole-board power). Even with this high power requirements a good 650watt PSU should handle even the water cooled version of the card according to adoredTV:

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The next thing we know about the card is it will come in a blower style variant initially and aftermarket cooled cards won't be seen until mid-september. The mid September cards will be getting the full aftermarket treatment with ASUS already announcing there VEGA 64 STRIX card.

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We also know that the VEGA 64  card will perform at 1080 levels but the architecture is designed to have the advantage of higher minimum frame rates.

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And finally we know the cards MSRP. The VEGA 56 will cost $399, VEGA 64 will cost $499 and VEGA 64 watercooled is initially only available in a bundle costing $699. These prices should be it immediately clear that the VEGA 56 stands to sell best if it has the performance of a 1070.

Talking of performance lets move on to the rumours. 3DMARK results have made there way onto the internet that, at this stage, should give us a good idea of VEGAs performance. The graphs below show the VEGA 64 generally performing around the levels of a Nvidia 1080 MSI gaming X card, it also shows that the higher clocked card (likely the water cooled edition) ends up sitting somewhere between the 1080 and the 1080ti (although it doesn't get close enough to make the 1080ti have to worry). This is good news assuming the cards are priced well.

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The performance number for VEGA 56 are looking much more like 'rumours' so I am going to discuss them but we may be better off waiting till tomorrow.

In Fire strike AMD RX Vega 56 manages to score 16471 and 15816 (each test has two scores for the VEGA 56 as it was tested with a i7-6950 and a ryzen 1800x) as opposed to the 1070 that can score 20000+. In Fire Strike Extreme 8718 and 8397 compared to the 1070s 9642. So initially it appears that the Nvidia 1070 is the clear winner. When we move to Fire Strike Ultra, however, the VEGA 56 scores 4796 and 4702 relative to the 1070s 4768 putting it on par with the 1070. If that wasn't enough in Timespy the VEGA 56 scores 6510 and 6405 while the 1070 trails at 4768 (Timespy proves to be quite a CPU bound test though if you look at the VEGA 64 timespy results).

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So rumoured results are mixed for the VEGA 56 card but the pricing and general feeling people have suggest this card will perform on par with an Nvidia 1070 but have more headroom for driver optimisations and be priced more aggressively.

The last rumours are the price. Sites have been putting up placeholder pages with placeholder prices for the VEGA release. These prices have been far higher than current MSRPs. These could be for one of two reason, either this card turns out to be a miners dream in which case the retailers can sell the card for a huge profit to miners, or, these are placeholder prices. These shouldn't be read into too much and we will find out exact prices soon enough.

So in summary. Tomorrow we will get reviews  of VEGA 56 and 64 reference style cards. We can expect cards that compete with the Nvidia 1070 and 1080. It is likely that the VEGA 56 will be the better purchase of the two cards, it looks set to compete very favourably with the Nvidia 1070 and is at a more popular price point than the higher end cards so is likely the VEGA card AMD are hoping to move in bulk. The VEGA 64 should perform at the level of an Nvidia 1080 depending on the overclock, how well this card competes will completely depend on the overclock the air cooled VEGA 64 can achieve.
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