AMD Radeon RX Vega Midrange Graphics Cards Reportedly Not Arriving Until Q1 2018

AMD has been hyping its Vega graphics architecture for a long time. It is fair to say that many enthusiasts are frothing at the mouth in anticipation of what Vega might bring to the table, and that anticipation grows higher each time AMD provides more information about its next-generation graphics cards, as was the case at Computex earlier this week. The wait is nearly (finally) over, unless you're holding out for a mid-range card based on Vega.

Vega is already official with AMD having announced the Radeon RX Vega Frontier Edition for developers. That card is decked out with 64 next-gen compute units, 4,096 stream processors, and 16GB of high-bandwidth cache. According to AMD, it is capable of delivering around 25 TFLOPS of half-precision compute performance (FP16) and 13 TFLOPS of single precision compute performance (FP32). As a point of reference, NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 1080 Ti deliver 11.4 TFLOPS of single precision compute performance.

Radeon RX Vega Frontier Edition

While it will be possible to play games on the Frontier Edition card, AMD recommends against it. Instead, the company said it is better to wait for its consumer variants, which it says will be even faster in games than the Frontier Edition. That does not necessarily mean it will boast bigger specs, but at the very least, those cards will be optimized for playing games.

"The Radeon Vega Frontier Edition graphics card is going to empower the pioneers creating the next generation of gaming experiences, but it does beg one question: Can you game on a Radeon Vega Frontier Edition? The answer is yes, absolutely. But because this graphics card is optimized for professional use cases (and priced accordingly), if gaming is your primary reason for buying a GPU, I’d suggest waiting just a little while longer for the lower-priced, gaming-optimized Radeon RX Vega graphics card. You’ll be glad you did," AMD's Raja Koduri stated in a blog post.

Either way, the assumption there is that AMD will roll out a high performance variant of Vega to consumers before releasing mid-range SKUs. At Computex earlier this week, AMD said it plans to introduce Radeon RX Vega graphics cards at SIGGRAPH 2017, which takes place Los Angeles from July 30 to August 3. In all likelihood, availability will follow sometime after rather.

Assuming things play out that way, it is logical to assume that AMD will release mid-range variants a few months later. That would peg the release of mid-range Vega cards at the end of 2017 at the earliest, or more likely into early 2018.