by Rob Williams on August 14, 2017 in Graphics & Displays
After months and months of anticipation, AMD’s RX Vega series has arrived. The first model out-of-the-gate is the RX Vega 64, going up against the GTX 1080 in gaming. In lieu of a look at gaming to start our Vega coverage, we decided to go the workstation route – and we’re glad we did. Prepare yourself to be decently surprised.
Gaming is generally not a big focus for professional GPU lines, but the fact of the matter is, they can game. That especially applies to the top-tier cards on the market, as they all perform similarly to the top-tier gaming cards from the same vendor of the same generation. So what’s the caveat with gaming on workstation cards? A lack of game-specific optimizations.
While on the GeForce or Radeon (non-Pro) side, the companies constantly roll out updates that improve general performance in gaming or performance specific to one title, Quadro and Radeon Pro drivers don’t have the same granularity where gaming’s concerned.
Both the GeForce and Radeon cards in this lineup use their respective gaming drivers, so it stands to reason they’ll perform better than their workstation counterparts if specs are shared.
To get a quick gauge on the performance of our workstation GPU collection in gaming, we use Futuremark’s 3DMark and Unigine’s Superposition.
It’s not listed in these results, but RX Vega 64 is on par with the GTX 1080, with all GPU scores in 3DMark being extremely close between the two. Overall, the RX Vega 64 performs as expected here overall. AMD recently told me that it prefers to optimize its current drivers for DX12 and Vulkan over DX11, and these Futuremark results back that up.
Both of Futuremark’s tests put AMD’s RX Vega 64 fourth from the top, and Superposition does the very same thing. Of course, gauging gaming performance of a gaming GPU is going to be best done in a gaming review, and fortunately, one of those is en route. For quick and dirty results to preface the review, take a peak.