AMD launched two new graphics cards for workstations, the Radeon Pro W7900 and the W7800, the former targeting the RTX 6000 Ada and the A6000 while the latter zeroing on the A5500. AMD’s new flagship doesn’t claim to be the fastest kid on the block but it does provide benchmarks that back its credentials as the best value for money.
The other thing that the new cards offer that Nvidia doesn’t is DisplayPort 2.1, a new standard that supports 12K resolution at 60Hz, that’s six times 4K resolution or almost 50 million pixels on each of its four ports. Note that the Radeon Pro W6800X Duo can handle 59 million pixels but across two GPU.
For reference 16K is equivalent to more than 132 million pixels; AMD has not confirmed whether you can run a pair of these in tandem but given that Apple offers them in the 4-year old Mac Pro, that’s almost a given (and who knows, maybe the W7900 will end up in the next one).
The W7800 has about 70% of the RDNA 3 CU and three quarters of the memory, compared to its bigger sibling, translating into a 25% lower performance. Surprisingly, the W7900 consumes only around 13% more power than the W7900.
AMD says that the W7900 offers up to 150% more performance than the W6800 thanks partly to 50% more memory. This Navi 31-based GPU is likely to be slower than the Radeon RX 7900 XTX or the Geforce RTX 4080/4090.
Betting on value for money
|Header Cell – Column 0||Radeon Pro W7800||Radeon Pro W7900||RTX 6000A||A6000||A5500|
Nvidia’s Geforce RTX 6000 Ada Generation remains the fastest graphics card on the planet and the one professionals with very deep pockets will go for if they want unbridled performance. That said, at less than half the price, a pair of W7900 may well outperform the 6000A in certain use cases.
On media and entertainment benchmarks, AMD relied heavily on performance per dollar metrics with tests carried on PugetBench for Premiere Pro, After Effects, Davinci Resolve, with on average a 1.7x better performance per dollar compared to the RTX 6000 Ada.
When it comes to CAD, manufacturing and AEC (think AutoCAD, Catia, Solidworks, Lumion), AMD used a mix of relative performance and performance per dollar to highlight the better value-for-money factor of the W7900 vis-à-vis its two closest Nvidia competitors.
One thing that is still missing is mobile parts for mobile workstations: Nvidia rules that market with no competition from AMD. The RTX 5000 Ada Generation is the pro version of the RTX 4090 Mobile and may end up being faster than W7900 at a price.
The other is a successor to the Radeon Pro W6800X Duo, which can be found in the Apple Mac Pro and pairs two GPU on one card.