AMD Announces 16 TFLOP Radeon Pro Duo, Partners With Crytek For VR First Initiative, Maingear For System Showcase

AMD Pro Duo Card
Today, AMD is holding its “Capsaicin” webcast in which it is talking about all of its latest initiatives in the graphics realm, including virtual reality (VR) and a powerful graphics card that we’ve been talking about for months.

On the topic of VR, we all know that it has a huge potential to make waves in the gaming space. High-end VR headsets like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, both of which are due out shortly, will change the way we interact with media content and the way we play current and future games. But what about the potential for VR outside the gaming space?

amd radeon pro duo 2

One potential is in the education sector, so AMD has partnered up with powerhouse developer Crytek. AMD will be Crytek’s exclusive technology partner for its VR First initiative, which “provides colleges and universities a ready-made VR solution for developers, students and researchers.” 

You can catch the livestream of AMD's Capsaicin event course right here... 

AMD and Crytek hope to plant VR seeds early so that can it empower people to create immersive VR experiences in the fields of medicine, entertainment, journalism and of course gaming. “We need a new generation of developers whose educational foundation includes mastery of game engines and GPU programming,” Raja Koduri, SVP and Chief Architect of the Radeon Technologies Group. “We’re dedicated to nurturing that future, and see the collaboration with Crytek and the VR First initiative as a key step in realizing the goal of expanding immersive experiences outlined in our VR Ready Programs.”

amd radeon pro duo 1

“VR experiences, harnessing the power of the CRYENGINE and developed using world-class Radeon hardware and software, will have the potential to fundamentally transform how we interact with technology,” added Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli.

So how exactly will AMD help Crytek with VR First? Well, we’re glad you asked. Remember that Radeon R9 Fury X2 graphics card that AMD CEO Lisa Su hoisted into area many moons ago? We were previously lead to believe that the dual-GPU graphics card would deliver performance of around 12 TFLOPs. However, that isn’t the case at all — the card will deliver in excess of 16 TFLOPs. 

The Radeon Pro Duo is essentially a pair of AMD R9 Fury GPUs (Fiji architecture) clocked at Fury boost speeds (not quite Fury X) and water cooled, along with on-board CrossFire of course. Here's a quick spec rundown but check our our full review of the Fury and Fury X cards as well for reference with respect to performance.  
Pro Duo Specs
And as you can see, the company has decided to showcase that card in some really swank and powerful systems built by Maingear Computers. 

amd radeon pro duo 3

AMD says that this is more than enough to allow developers to “[Develop] content more rapidly for tomorrow’s killer VR experiences while at work, and playing the latest DirectX 12 experiences at maximum fidelity while off work.”

amd radeon pro duo 5

And the Radeon R9 Fury X2 name? That’s dead and buried — the card is now known as the Radeon Pro Duo. And given the sheer horsepower of the Radeon Pro Duo, it should come as no surprise why Crytek wanted to partner with AMD for VR First. Each of the colleges and universities that participate in VR First will be use Radeon Pro Duo cards along with the LiquidVR SDK. Interestingly enough, AMD says the that the initial VR First Lab opened in January at the Bahçeşehir University in Istanbul, Turkey.

The AMD Radeon Pro Duo will be available during the second quarter with an estimated street price of $1,499.