Availability of AMD's incoming Radeon RX 7900-series graphics card starting December 13 has primarily become a byword given the spread of unofficial information never addressed by AMD or its partners. Finally, however, XFX has something to offer, and this is custom designed — Merc 310 (opens in new tab) — Radeon RX 7900 XT, and Radeon RX 7900 XTX boards at Amazon (as noticed by @momomo_us (opens in new tab)). The listings are no longer available, but both products appear to have steep price tags, though.
Now, for the XFX Merc 310, we have two graphics cards priced at $979 and $1,099. They're more expensive than than AMD's MSRP. Is it bad? Not exactly, some graphics cards are more costly, and but there is a crowd that buys them.
XFX's cards are indeed custom designs of AMD's Radeon RX 7900 series based on the RDNA 3 architecture. They feature AMD's Navi 31 graphics processors in XTX and XT configurations and 24GB and 20 GB of high-speed GDDR6 memory, respectively. While our own Jarred Walton has yet to test these graphics cards, something in the air tells us that we are indeed about to admire some of the best graphics cards available (well, in a couple of weeks).
XFX's background would have been little but surprising for this company not to offer any reference RDNA 3-based premium graphics cards. Meanwhile, since we are performance PC enthusiasts here at Tom's Hardware, we look forward to custom graphics cards based on the RDNA 3 flag carrying Navi 31 GPU.
We have seen reports that Sapphire, PowerColor, and XFX are to offer custom high-end Radeon RX 7900-series products on Day 1 — which is December 13 for the RDNA 3 architecture — but these reports yet have to prove themselves.
More details at the bottom of the above link.
This will just drive a lot more people to consoles, especially once the mid-range bang-for-buck sweet spot for the overwhelming majority of consumers turns out to be £600-800 for cards that used to be £400-600. At this rate even the £300 budget cards will be a turn off.
The only reference edition products I've seen is Sapphire's Made By AMD duo, and I haven't seen anything that says reference edition products would be available at launch, or that any AIB other than Sapphire is even making a strictly reference edition.
Also, it means that SRP only applies to reference edition products, AIBs are free to tack on anything they want, and retailers can add on anything they want on top of that, so like the promised "Socket AM5 motherboards starting at $125", the $1000 and $900 cards won't be seen, especially at launch if the rumors of near zero stock as well as typical scalper bot buys occur.
Reference designs have also come a long way. $100 for maybe 3-5% improvement simply isn't worth it. Even $999 is a lot of money in this economy. Going over that is going to have a lot of people look twice. It's a psychological barrier.
That said I'm also disappointed in the rumor mill. 60% uplift over a 6950 isn't near the 100%+ I heard tossed around a lot. AMD hype strikes again. While the price is okay (compared to nividia) I'm still waiting for the gpu that shows Nvidia is all over hype.
I'm counting the RTX4090 in this category because if you spread your wallet wide enough to pop $1000 out, $1500 isn't a much further stretch from that and most people shopping in the $1000+ price bracket don't like to settle for 2nd best, as shown by the RTX4080's horrible sales.