AMD FirePro W8000, W9000 Challenge Nvidia's Quadro

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Performance Analysis:
To be perfectly candid, we found the W8000 and W9000's performance disappointing, and their proposed price/performance ratio isn't so hot either. If AMD had kept to its previous price structure, the W9000 would've slipped in nicely at $2500 and the W8000 at $1149.  At $4000 and $1600 against the Quadro 6000 (also $4000) and the Quadro 5000 ($1849) though, AMD's prospects at this time aren't very good. The situation may change with future driver revisions if AMD is able to wring more performance from the GCN architecture in professional applications, but the current state of the software is what it is and the W8000 and W9000's performance didn't scale as expected.

The way things currently stack up with these new pro graphics cards, AMD's sales and marketing departments are writing checks that this hardware cannot cash. While it's true that the FirePro W9000 and W8000 can push a great many displays, the fact is, you don't buy a $4000 GPU because you need to drive six monitors. And none of the ancillary benefits of these cards are quite good enough to compensate for their current performance.

If the performance situation changes, and hopefully it will, we'll update this story or revisit the issue. For now, it's difficult to recommend either the W9000 or W8000 for general 3D modeling in any application other than PTC Creo 2.0. In that program and usage model, the W9000 may well be a fabulous deal. For everything else, we'd recommend a close look at the V7900 and keeping an eye on the evolving situation with the crop of new professional cards coming to market from both camps.

  • Great performance in PTC Creo
  • Cutting-edge features
  • Might be competitive with further driver optimizations

  • Not competitive now
  • Overpriced, even for its market segment
  • Often beaten by GPU 1/5th its price

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