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Report: HD 6970 Release to be Delayed

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 50 comments

Word on the street is that yield problems are to blame.

The GPU wars usually hit a crescendo as the holidays near, with AMD and NVIDIA jockeying for a spot on customers’ shopping lists. Seems some production-related delays may tip the scale in NVIDIA’s and the upcoming GTX 580’s favor.

If various sources based within Taiwan are to be believed, then AMD and its manufacturing partner TSMC has encountered some problems in generating enough volume for a planned November 22 release. The issues are bad enough that test yields amount only in the single digits.

The AMD Radeon HD 6970 “Cayman” will reportedly feature a 256-bit controller and 2GB of GDDR5 RAM, while the competing GTX 580 will “only” work with 1.5GB of memory. Both high-end video cards will be overkill for any single-display system.

Does the rumor indicate a problem with the Cayman architecture? Or are TSMC’s fabrication capabilities lacking? Most importantly, will AMD ship on time? Only time will provide definitive answers to these questions, and confirmation (or lack thereof) of the rumor’s validity. Stay tuned, dear readers!

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Top Comments
  • 21 Hide
    kresso , November 8, 2010 6:20 PM
    Sounds like your selling a murder mystery.
  • 16 Hide
    Snipergod87 , November 8, 2010 6:20 PM
    There is always a fabrication process issue..
  • 12 Hide
    cinergy , November 8, 2010 6:21 PM
    Delays or not, it'll be worth the wait.
Other Comments
    Display all 50 comments.
  • 16 Hide
    Snipergod87 , November 8, 2010 6:20 PM
    There is always a fabrication process issue..
  • 21 Hide
    kresso , November 8, 2010 6:20 PM
    Sounds like your selling a murder mystery.
  • 12 Hide
    cinergy , November 8, 2010 6:21 PM
    Delays or not, it'll be worth the wait.
  • 7 Hide
    NapoleonDK , November 8, 2010 6:21 PM
    I would like 6 months worth of boxart from both parties first please. :) 

    /sarcasm
  • -6 Hide
    bgaimur , November 8, 2010 6:22 PM
    how can you even call this news? From taiwanese sources? This is a reproduced article based on another site that posted this earlier, which is claimed to be bogus. Pure speculation
  • -2 Hide
    IzzyCraft , November 8, 2010 6:25 PM
    kressoSounds like your selling a murder mystery.

    Quote:
    Does the rumor indicate a problem with the Cayman architecture? Or are TSMC’s fabrication capabilities lacking? Most importantly, will AMD ship on time?

    Either way i swear i've already read this story like a year ago it seems...
  • 5 Hide
    jomofro39 , November 8, 2010 6:28 PM
    Yields of single digits?! That is terrible. Is that accurate? For the prototype attempts? Am I wrong in criticizing that poor yield? What are the normal yields for a first-stage production of a consumer graphics card? In my industry, yields that low mean that something is terribly wrong, and it should never have even progressed to production if such errors are even a possibility, let alone a reality.
  • 0 Hide
    megamanx00 , November 8, 2010 6:41 PM
    Perhaps an error in the design? Truly AMD has done enough 40nm parts to know what to expect. I don't think it would just be related to the increased die size. We'll see.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , November 8, 2010 6:42 PM
    "Both high-end video cards will be overkill for any single-display system."

    That's a pretty audacious statement. They're both just die shrinks. Nothing revolutionary, just evolutionary.

    I can pretty guarantee that still, neither of them will be able to run Crys... er.. the unmentionable game at highest settings at 2560x1600 with a min of 30fps.

    Unless you mean both cards together in some future actually working version of Lucid Hydra. That would be a mean machine.
  • 3 Hide
    LORD_ORION , November 8, 2010 6:53 PM
    Right...
    Both Nvidia and AMD have been using his process for a year now... and only now AMD is having a yield problem...

    More like Nvidia friendly parties are trying to move as much of their 465 and higher inventory as they can before the 69xx and 580 force a fire sale of the entire upper bracket of cards.
  • 2 Hide
    g00fysmiley , November 8, 2010 7:06 PM
    i like the "future actually working version of lucid hydra) i am gonna try to get a lucid hydra board next build thoguh just to support the tech i know it isn't as good as acrossfire and sli but want it to expand.

    as for it beign overkill... yea i'd say in a huge resolution like your mentioned 2560x1600 for playable framerates that would tax either... but for the mainstream and even mid-high end enthusiasts we're still stuck in teh age of 1080p where monitor companies seem content on keeping the mainstream... but i shouldn't complain my 8500gt can't even do 1080p >_<
  • 1 Hide
    chesterman , November 8, 2010 7:46 PM
    "Both high-end video cards will be overkill for any single-display system."

    sniff... i want more displays!!
  • 1 Hide
    Phoenixlight , November 8, 2010 7:49 PM
    Oh well, I'll still be happy to buy a HD6870 when I get around to buying a new computer in January.
  • 8 Hide
    elysium2k7 , November 8, 2010 7:55 PM
    If this is to be accurate which it probably isn't. The it sounds like the tables have turned in Nvidias favor and AMD is having the same problem that Nvidia had when trying to launch fermi the first time around. Isnt it ironic, dont ya think? Wonder what the fanboys will holler this time. Im sure every argument that had last year against nvidia will be flipped for in AMD's favor. Oh well I look forward to seeing how both flagship products perform. Competition is always a good thing for consumers saves us money woot!
  • 2 Hide
    hellwig , November 8, 2010 7:56 PM
    LORD_ORIONRight...Both Nvidia and AMD have been using his process for a year now... and only now AMD is having a yield problem...More like Nvidia friendly parties are trying to move as much of their 465 and higher inventory as they can before the 69xx and 580 force a fire sale of the entire upper bracket of cards.


    Actually, Nvidia had terrible yields on Fermi initially. I think I read sub-5% once, in fact, I think it might have been literally just 5 GPUs on a test run once (based on GPU serial numbers). They fixed their problems eventually, and probably learned a thing or two for their next-gen fabrication.

    Why doesn't AMD use GlobalFoundries for Radeon-production? Does GlobalFoundries not have the necessary tech, are they busy with other business? Seems silly to own part of GlobalFoundries and yet pay someone else to make your first batch, especially if they then have problems doing so.
  • 5 Hide
    rmse17 , November 8, 2010 7:58 PM
    What exactly is your meaning of "overkill"? Cause it has been a while since I saw the nominal 100fps that I used to get in HL and CS. Is there a video card in existence that will play Crysis, GTA4, SupCom, or even Star Craft 2 at 100fps using the "standard" 1080p resolution with max settings? No, there isn't. We aren't even starting to approach a single monitor "overkill" video cards.
  • -3 Hide
    nforce4max , November 8, 2010 8:00 PM
    Hmm the sweet smell of humble pie.
  • 1 Hide
    eklipz330 , November 8, 2010 8:06 PM
    elysium2k7If this is to be accurate which it probably isn't. The it sounds like the tables have turned in Nvidias favor and AMD is having the same problem that Nvidia had when trying to launch fermi the first time around. Isnt it ironic, dont ya think? Wonder what the fanboys will holler this time.


    amd rolled out their mid range already, and those are amazing. they are not in the same boat as fermi
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , November 8, 2010 8:11 PM
    These cards are not overall for single displays. Until there is single high end card that can run Crysis at 1920x1200, 8xaa 16xaf at maximum settings (customized with user end mods that improve on quality) @ a minimum of 60 fps, we still have much ground to cover.
  • -5 Hide
    cronik93 , November 8, 2010 8:35 PM
    There considered overkill? Then I can't wait to get a 6950.
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