AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances

New version 13.11 beta Catalyst drivers are now available for AMD desktop and mobile accelerators on the AMD support website. The new drivers offer performance improvements and a couple of fixes, including one that addresses a mysterious variance in performance across various brands of their new R9 290 GPUs. They attribute the problem to fan-speed inconsistencies, which they are now addressing, saying the new drivers include a "PowerTune update to reduce variance of fan speed / RPM" on Radeon R9 290 series cards. Thanks HARDOCP.
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28.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 9, 2013, 10:30
28.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 9, 2013, 10:30
Nov 9, 2013, 10:30
 
{PH}88fingers wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 21:47:
I will be a R9 290 owner as soon as Asus releases their DirectCU II model.
I have been an owner of both Nvidia and ATI over the years and the last few upgrades have been nvidia due to drivers (currently have the GTX 570)
But with Mantle coming out and AMD in both next gen consoles, I have a tad bit more faith in the driver situation being at least not a game stopper.
Therefore since at the value price/performance the 290 is one helluva beast. as soon as asus cooler is on there I'm in.
(have a korean 2560*1440 therefore games require a tad bit more than what my 570 can push)

Seems well thought out, can't argue on point. I am very interested to see what this Mantle thing really does.
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27.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 9, 2013, 02:32
27.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 9, 2013, 02:32
Nov 9, 2013, 02:32
 
I have 6990 but I have 290x coming to me next week. In my case I never have need to run my fan higher than 56% speed(gpu never goes over 70C) on my 6990. I do have a good cooling on cpu and case itself though.

So basically with the newer drivers I suspect I bet I will be able to stick to about same fan speed 56% on 290x and not get it too hot I will report next week.
"On 2646.215 I myself attacked & destroyed TCS Tiger's Claw in my Jalthi heavy fighter"
Bakhtosh Redclaw Nar Kiranka
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26.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 21:47
26.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 21:47
Nov 8, 2013, 21:47
 
I will be a R9 290 owner as soon as Asus releases their DirectCU II model.
I have been an owner of both Nvidia and ATI over the years and the last few upgrades have been nvidia due to drivers (currently have the GTX 570)
But with Mantle coming out and AMD in both next gen consoles, I have a tad bit more faith in the driver situation being at least not a game stopper.
Therefore since at the value price/performance the 290 is one helluva beast. as soon as asus cooler is on there I'm in.
(have a korean 2560*1440 therefore games require a tad bit more than what my 570 can push)
25.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 8, 2013, 20:40
25.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 8, 2013, 20:40
Nov 8, 2013, 20:40
 
The Half Elf wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 13:21:
The problem isn't AMD's design, it has always been with it drivers. Not playing the fanboi card or anything but ATI drivers have been a mixed bag for over a decade.

I feel like thats also true of Nvidia too though. I had a game due to a driver issue brick an nvidia game. Granted the card was four years old and endured heavy use but still. Also had trouble with AMD drivers, my mouse drivers, my CF reader when vista first came out and well you get what I'm saying.
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24.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 19:58
24.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 19:58
Nov 8, 2013, 19:58
 
Cutter wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 19:00:
Who here own a 290? No one? Then shut up.

The question should be, 'Who here weighs 290?'
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23.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 19:00
Cutter
 
23.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 19:00
Nov 8, 2013, 19:00
 Cutter
 
Who here own a 290? No one? Then shut up.
"Hot air hangs like a dead man, from a white oak tree. People sitting on porches, thinking how things used to be. It's a dark night...dark night."
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22.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 18:53
22.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 18:53
Nov 8, 2013, 18:53
 
DangerDog wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 14:13:
RollinThundr wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 13:59:

AMD parts and heat issues? You don't say!

To be fair I understand the GTX 480 was hot and loud as well, I missed out on that drama but neither AMD or Nvidia are strangers to poorly designed hardware.

480? That is a few years back now. I'm for either who wins the price/performance/cool/noise ratio. What I've found is after you've had a card that ran hot or loud (or both) you then love it when you get a card that performs great, is cool and quiet. It really does become a pretty big feature over just power. The 600 and 700 lines have been just that.
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21.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 8, 2013, 18:49
21.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 8, 2013, 18:49
Nov 8, 2013, 18:49
 
Burrito of Peace wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 13:03:
Rigs wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 11:25:
Give AMD some credit. They designed the damn thing, I would think they'd kinda know what they're doing, yes?

Don't be silly, Rigs. This is BN. We're all world recognized experts in programming, game design and hardware design. In many cases, we know better than the creators themselves. It's that special kind of omnipotence that only we possess.



Yes, that was total sarcasm. However, no doubt someone will take it seriously nevertheless.

The thing is (like sports fan) sometimes we actually do, don't we?
Avatar 17232
20.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 18:29
20.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 18:29
Nov 8, 2013, 18:29
 
noman wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 17:11:
InBlack wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 10:30:
How the fuck does that reduce the variance? It just increases the max fan setting. If anything it would increase the variance. And since when is 40% max??? What the fuck is wrong with 100%! Furious

Seriously, right now there is no need to buy the 290X when the 290 is as fast as it. Unless these drivers are nerfing the 290 somehow.....

The fix is not about changing the max fan limit from 40 to 47%. That particular fix was already there in 13.11 beta8 and is specific to 290 (not 290X) anyway.

The fix here is controlling the fan limits properly. They have an RPM sensor for the fan, and a PWM voltage control. The fan % setting until now was controlling PWM. The assumption was that 47% PWM voltage pulse will give you a certain amount of RPM resulting in certain noise (and cooling properties). However the electrical/mechanical properties are such that same 47% PWM may result in slightly different fan speeds on different cards, which caused temperature variance. The new driver takes the RPM sensor data and set the max PWM to be any voltage which gives 47% (or whatever you configure the max limit to) fan speed.

It makes sense, as the fan speed is what the driver is supposed to control anyway as a noise/heat tradeoff.
Well of course there will be variances because the ambient temperature is going to be different. So in the summer x amount of performance is going to cost more noise than in the winter.
19.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 8, 2013, 17:21
19.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 8, 2013, 17:21
Nov 8, 2013, 17:21
 
Burrito of Peace wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 13:03:
Rigs wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 11:25:
Give AMD some credit. They designed the damn thing, I would think they'd kinda know what they're doing, yes?

Don't be silly, Rigs. This is BN. We're all world recognized experts in programming, game design and hardware design. In many cases, we know better than the creators themselves. It's that special kind of omnipotence that only we possess.



Yes, that was total sarcasm. However, no doubt someone will take it seriously nevertheless.

That reply was a classic just like your username. Well played sir..well played.

At one point during the hazy 90s I did go by Bubonic burrito of madness... ah to be 20 again lol.. then again I wouldn't be eligible for security clearance or a good job had I kept going down that track.. Had to Wake up wake up wake..cause its the fist of the month lol
18.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 17:11
18.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 17:11
Nov 8, 2013, 17:11
 
InBlack wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 10:30:
How the fuck does that reduce the variance? It just increases the max fan setting. If anything it would increase the variance. And since when is 40% max??? What the fuck is wrong with 100%! Furious

Seriously, right now there is no need to buy the 290X when the 290 is as fast as it. Unless these drivers are nerfing the 290 somehow.....

The fix is not about changing the max fan limit from 40 to 47%. That particular fix was already there in 13.11 beta8 and is specific to 290 (not 290X) anyway.

The fix here is controlling the fan limits properly. They have an RPM sensor for the fan, and a PWM voltage control. The fan % setting until now was controlling PWM. The assumption was that 47% PWM voltage pulse will give you a certain amount of RPM resulting in certain noise (and cooling properties). However the electrical/mechanical properties are such that same 47% PWM may result in slightly different fan speeds on different cards, which caused temperature variance. The new driver takes the RPM sensor data and set the max PWM to be any voltage which gives 47% (or whatever you configure the max limit to) fan speed.

It makes sense, as the fan speed is what the driver is supposed to control anyway as a noise/heat tradeoff.
17.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 16:54
17.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 16:54
Nov 8, 2013, 16:54
 
So ready to upgrade from my 3gb GTX580 to the 880 when it's finally released. AMD lost me as a customer years ago.
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16.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 16:35
JSP
16.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 16:35
Nov 8, 2013, 16:35
JSP
 
But then, all these idiotic babblings about heat and noise issues will quiet down with variants with custom coolers.
15.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 16:08
15.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 16:08
Nov 8, 2013, 16:08
 
Heh....if you guys arent already tone deaf of the high speed wines of a gpu fan running at 100% then your doing it wrong.
Avatar 46370
14.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 14:25
Verno
 
14.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 14:25
Nov 8, 2013, 14:25
 Verno
 
DangerDog wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 14:13:
To be fair I understand the GTX 480 was hot and loud as well, I missed out on that drama but neither AMD or Nvidia are strangers to poorly designed hardware.

Yeah. Nvidia for quite a long time had a reputation of hot and loud cards, like years.
Playing: Ys VIII, Hades, Demons Souls
Watching: The Expanse, Tenet, Peninsula
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13.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 14:13
13.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 14:13
Nov 8, 2013, 14:13
 
RollinThundr wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 13:59:

AMD parts and heat issues? You don't say!

To be fair I understand the GTX 480 was hot and loud as well, I missed out on that drama but neither AMD or Nvidia are strangers to poorly designed hardware.
Avatar 6174
12.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 14:08
12.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 14:08
Nov 8, 2013, 14:08
 
tony wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 10:08:
Translation: We will make sure the fan runs at "bone saw setting" at all times because we are pushing this chip as hard as we can to compete with GK110 and we didn't put any effort into the cooling system.

That pretty much sums up the 290(X) cards, until they release custom cooler solutions for these the reference cooler is an amazingly poor match.

I held off getting a graphics card for months after building a new system, all the hype around this card was what drove me to hold off. I was expecting it to be a loud card given the blower cooler design but I wasn't expecting the temps to be so high. AMD saying the card is designed to run at 95C is bullshit, it throttles down some 200 to 400 mhz when it hits those temps in a matter of minutes of running a game. Even if the components on the card can take that level of heat for extended period of time I sure as hell can't.

With non-reference coolers you're most likely just trading sources of noise from the fans on the card to needing to crank up your case fans RPM's to exchange all that hot air being dumped into your case - I haven't seen any non-reference cooler that isn't open air. Either way you're still dealing with 95C temps, perhaps welcome in cold winter months but good luck when summer hits.

Sticking with green team again, AMD can continue being the underdog and I hope they stick around because without them Nvidia would kill off PC gaming by forcing $900 graphics card prices.
Avatar 6174
11.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 13:59
11.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 13:59
Nov 8, 2013, 13:59
 
jacobvandy wrote on Nov 8, 2013, 13:45:
If the fan speed is contributing to the performance variances, then ambient room temperature is affecting it as well. They're obviously targeting a maximum thermal threshold of 95 degrees C or whatever it is, meaning that the GPU is going to be throttled when it begins to exceed that level. If the room is colder, or hotter, the GPU is going to be throttled at different levels, if at all. Similarly, the fan speed being even slightly too low or too high is going to affect the core temperature significantly.

This only reinforces the fact that AMD is having some pretty severe thermal issues with their latest products. If you have to dial back the performance of your graphics card to prevent it from melting itself into a giant hunk of abstract paperweight, it might be time to go back to the drawing board... Who knows what kind of performance they could be offering if they actually gave a crap about efficiency? The least they could do is come up with an integrated liquid cooling solution or something, because adding an extra $50-75 on top of the price in exchange for better temps and apparently better performance would surely be worth it? But I guess they're leaving that up to the third-party guys.

AMD parts and heat issues? You don't say!
10.
 
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances
Nov 8, 2013, 13:45
10.
Re: AMD Beta Driver Addresses R9 290 Variances Nov 8, 2013, 13:45
Nov 8, 2013, 13:45
 
If the fan speed is contributing to the performance variances, then ambient room temperature is affecting it as well. They're obviously targeting a maximum thermal threshold of 95 degrees C or whatever it is, meaning that the GPU is going to be throttled when it begins to exceed that level. If the room is colder, or hotter, the GPU is going to be throttled at different levels, if at all. Similarly, the fan speed being even slightly too low or too high is going to affect the core temperature significantly.

This only reinforces the fact that AMD is having some pretty severe thermal issues with their latest products. If you have to dial back the performance of your graphics card to prevent it from melting itself into a giant hunk of abstract paperweight, it might be time to go back to the drawing board... Who knows what kind of performance they could be offering if they actually gave a crap about efficiency? The least they could do is come up with an integrated liquid cooling solution or something, because adding an extra $50-75 on top of the price in exchange for better temps and apparently better performance would surely be worth it? But I guess they're leaving that up to the third-party guys.
9.
 
Re: Out of the Blue
Nov 8, 2013, 13:21
9.
Re: Out of the Blue Nov 8, 2013, 13:21
Nov 8, 2013, 13:21
 
The problem isn't AMD's design, it has always been with it drivers. Not playing the fanboi card or anything but ATI drivers have been a mixed bag for over a decade.
Avatar 12670
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