AMD has broadcast its "30 Year of Gaming and Graphics" live event via Twitch, where the company announced the Radeon R9 285 graphics card. This new product is equipped with the Tonga Pro GPU and is intended to succeed the Radeon R9 280, bringing a similar level of performance to a lower TDP and a lower price point.
The GPU on this new card boasts 1792 stream processors, the same number as the current Radeon R9 280. The Radeon R9 285's 918 MHz maximum GPU boost clock rate is slightly slower than the Radeon R9 280's 933 MHz cap, though. On the other hand, the R9 285's 1375 MHz actual/5.5 GHz effective memory speed is notably faster than the 280's 1250 MHz/5.0 GHz specification, so net performance may be slightly faster.
The Radeon R9 285 requires two 6-pin PCI-Express power connectors and carries a maximum 190 Watt TDP, which is a good bit less than the Radeon R9 280's 250 Watt maximum draw. In addition, the Radeon R9 285's Tonga GPU supports new features such as AMD TrueAudio and FreeSync technology.
Along with this new graphics card, AMD also announced the Never Settle Space Edition bundle. This expands on the current Never Settle portfolio of games that are available to certain Radeon graphics card buyers, with the addition of Alien Isolation and Star Citizen to the list.
Both the Radeon R9 285 and the new Never Settle Space Edition bundle will be available starting September 2, 2014. AMD had some fun with the live audience by announcing a fake $329 asking price, but revised that to the product's true $249 MSRP.
With similar specifications and an identical asking price compared to the Radeon R9 280, the new Radeon R9 285 doesn't appear to offer any groundbreaking performance advantage over it's predecessor but we won't know for sure until we test an actual card in our labs. There might be a notable difference in power draw though, and we will get you the test result data as soon as we can