Word comes from AMD via a press release this morning that they are giving the Radeon R9 Nano a price cut. AMD’s diminutive flagship, which launched in September 2015 at $649, is now the first Fiji card to get an official price cut, with AMD lowering the MSRP to $499 effective immediately.

The third card based on AMD’s flagship Fiji GPU, the Radeon R9 Nano was in a sense a culmination of AMD’s design goals for Fiji. Seeking to take full advantage of the compact packaging afforded by the use of High Bandwidth Memory, AMD packed a fully enabled Fiji into a Mini-ITX sized video card designed especially for small form factor systems. The resulting card was neither a performance flagship card like the Fury X nor a clear second-tier card like the regular Fury, but rather a third card that occupied its own niche within the PC market. This coupled with its unique power binning requirements led to it being launched as a micro-sized alternative to the full Fury X at the same $649 MSRP.

This marks the first instance of a significant price cut for a Fiji card – since their respective launches we’ve seen all three cards drift lower by only $50 or so – and that the card receiving a price drop is AMD’s most recently launched Fiji card is a bit surprising. From a price/performance perspective the Nano was essentially priced as a luxury card, with AMD banking on being able to charge a premium for its improved power efficiency and small size. Today’s price drop essentially puts an end to that, especially since the two Fury cards are not receiving a price cut of their own. With that said, the Nano’s power requirements call for what is arguably the best Fiji chip bin, so that adds another wrinkle to the entire situation.

More interesting perhaps is where this puts the R9 Fury (vanilla), which can already be found for as low at $499. The R9 Fury is only a few percent faster than the R9 Nano and noticeably more power hungry as well, so if the R9 Fury remains at $499 then it's hard to imagine the R9 Nano not being disruptive to R9 Fury sales.

Finally, it’s also worth noting that this comes just days after NVIDIA’s most recent game bundle announcement. Although not specifically addressed by AMD, this may be their response to that bundle in order to shore up their lineup against the similarly-priced GTX 980. Especially since this now places AMD's most power efficient card against NVIDIA's most efficient card, offering about 5% better performance for 5% higher power consumption.

Winter 2016 GPU Pricing Comparison
AMD Price NVIDIA
  $629 GeForce GTX 980 Ti
Radeon R9 Fury X $599  
Radeon R9 Fury
Radeon R9 Nano
$499  
  $479 GeForce GTX 980
Radeon R9 390X $379  
Radeon R9 390 $299 GeForce GTX 970
POST A COMMENT

74 Comments

View All Comments

  • just4U - Wednesday, January 13, 2016 - link

    Considering availability.. you may be right. Reply
  • ppi - Tuesday, January 12, 2016 - link

    14/16 nm cards won't be substantially faster than 600mm2 28nm cards for some time. At least till 14/16nm cards reach over 300mm2. Reply
  • godrilla - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    They should have put 2 nanos on one pcb and sell it for $1k in 2015. A price cut could mean they are probably close to a successor soon. Reply
  • extide - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    Yeah that is basically what the Fury X2 will be. Reply
  • Refuge - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    Which then brings back the same discussion every time I see two Fiji chips on a single board being discussed.

    What does the horsepower do for you that the 4gb VRM limit won't bottleneck? Any I can think of there are better options. I know they will do it, but I think it is silly to put this GPU into an x2 card.
    Reply
  • blppt - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    I used to worry that 4GB wasnt enough either, but I havent seen a benchmark yet in which the far superior HBM bandwidth didnt balance out the dearth of frame buffer/texture space. Even at 4k.

    And in the ones that did take a significant hit at that res, it was often just AMD's shoddy early drivers for a particular game, and was cleared up in newer drivers.
    Reply
  • OrphanageExplosion - Tuesday, January 12, 2016 - link

    Assassin's Creed Unity says "Hello". Reply
  • blppt - Tuesday, January 12, 2016 - link

    http://www.gamersnexus.net/game-bench/2195-assassi...

    Erm, even at 4k, there is little to no benefit to the 4GB vs 8GB AMD cards (390X being faster than 290X overall), and neither of them have the HBM advantage.
    Reply
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, January 13, 2016 - link

    Tomb Raider and Mordor both showed an improvement with 8GB 290X cards versus 4GB models, at the same clock. Reply
  • blppt - Thursday, January 14, 2016 - link

    In the case of SoM, I believe that was fixed after one of the very early patches. I know because I had an old Sapphire 290x (one of the wind tunnel launch models) 4GB and the game was unplayable with the HD textures at max settings. It would stutter/pause every few seconds, a problem which did not exist on my Titan Blacks (6GB VRAM), and also did not exist when I turned down the texture setting from "ultra". But it appears like that issue has been addressed in one of the patches since launch:

    http://www.tweaktown.com/tweakipedia/100/3440x1440...

    If it was still doing that unplayable swapping, the min framerates would be much lower than what they ended up getting.

    Dont have Tomb Raider, so I cant speak to that. But that tweaktown article shows at 4k, the Fury X still has a lead over the 390X (which only comes in 8GB). If it were forced into texture swapping there would be a significant dropoff.

    I no longer have that 4GB card anyways---i sold it, and have 2 8GB 290x---the Sapphire Toxic models. But not for the memory limitation----that launch 290x was ridiculously loud due to the poor OEM cooler being unable to keep the card cool. That was an AMD boner if there ever was one.
    Reply

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now