AMD Radeon R9 285 “Tonga” officially announced

AMD Radeon R9 285X

AMD has officially announced their all-new Radeon R9 285 graphics card on their “30 Years of Graphics and Gaming Commemoration” event. The new graphics card is based on the “Tonga PRO” variation of company’s latest “Tonga” GPU. We’ve been hearing about the Tonga and the Radeon R9 285 for a while now. A couple of days ago, we also reported that AMD will announce the new graphics card soon and it will be up for sale on September 2. That’s exactly what has come forward from AMD’s announcement.

AMD Radeon R9 285

As mentioned, the Radeon R9 285 utilizes the new Tonga GPU which is based on TSMC’s 28nm manufacturing process. It has 1792 GCN cores, 112 texture units and 32 ROPs. It has not been clearly established yet but it seems like that the graphics card is based on GCN 1.1 as it comes with latest technologies like TrueAudio.

AMD has revealed the core clock of the Radeon R9 285 to be up to 918 MHz whereas it has 2GB of GDDR5 memory clocked at 5.5 GHz. This card is comparable to the Radeon R9 280, both in terms of specifications and price, however it has smaller memory bus width and size. Currently, it is being released with 2GB memory but AMD claims that 4GB version will also be available later.

AMD Radeon R9 285 Specs

AMD has also managed to significantly lower the TDP to 190W as compared to 250W on the R9 280. Even though, the R9 285 is being pegged by media as its replacing the R9 280 but AMD hasn’t said anything official about it however all the evidence points towards it. The R9 285 now sits directly below the R9 280X, this position was previously held by the R9 280. Its quite surprising for most people that a card with higher product name (R9 285) is slower than a card with lower product name (R9 280X) however if the previous reports are to be considered then AMD will soon launch a faster version of R9 285 named as R9 285X which will use Tonga XT GPU and it’ll replace the R9 280X.

AMD GPU Specifications

AMD Radeon R9 280X AMD Radeon R9 285 AMD Radeon R9 280
Stream Processors 2048 1792 1792
Texture Units 128 112 112
ROPs 32 32 32
Core Clock 850MHz N/A 827MHz
Boost Clock 1000MHz 918MHz 933MHz
Memory Clock 6GHz GDDR5 5.5GHz GDDR5 5GHz GDDR5
Memory Bus Width 384-bit 256-bit 384-bit
TrueAudio N Y N
TDP 250W 190W 250W
Architecture GCN 1.0 GCN 1.1? GCN 1.0
GPU Tahiti Tonga PRO Tahiti
Launch Date 10/11/13 09/02/14 03/04/14
Launch Price $299 $249 $279

The R9 280 was launched at $279 but the new R9 285 is being launched at $250. However, the former can be bought for as low as $220 these days but the newer R9 285 still seems to be a better option considering its power efficiency and new features like TrueAudio. Radeon R9 285’s competitor from green side is the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 760 which has slightly lower performance but also comes at a lower price of $240. However, the actual position of R9 285 will be unveiled once the reviews go live on September 2.

AMD Radeon R9 285 Performanc

All of AMD’s AIB partners will be launching their versions of the R9 285 on September 2 and there will be on reference version.


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