Tahiti LE is a special version of AMD’s Tahiti chip found in the HD7950 and HD7970. Its a slightly cut-down version of the real thing, boasting 1536 GCN cores, a 256-bit memory interface and clock speeds of 925MHz, boosting up to 975MHz using AMD’s Powertune software. The RAM is the most interesting bit because they are probably the same modules Nvidia uses – 6GHz DDR5 chips rounding in at 2GB. Keep in mind though that the “LE” moniker isn’t the harbringer of doom that it used to be in the past – it now stands for “Limited Edition” and Tahiti LE will only be available for a limited time before Oland hits the market early next year.
Tahiti LE also includes a few chip improvements. Its not a GHz chip but then again, its going to be priced to fend off the advances of Nvidia’s GTX660. Its been tweaked to support Windows 8’s WDDM 1.2 graphics renderer, is UEFI-compliant (whatever the hell that means) and also supports AMD’s ZeroCore technology, turning off the GPU if it’s used in a Crossfire setup and the secondary GPU is idle.
Other partners who have announced support for Tahiti LE are Club3D and PowerColour (Club3D owns both PowerColour and VTX3D). Club3D’s version has already been released in the form of the HD7870 Jokercard, although its availability in EMEA regions leaves a lot to be desired. Sapphire’s new Toxic card looked like it also had a Tahiti LE chip, but has since been revealed to be a Pitcairn-based unit.
Sadly, these cards probably won’t reach our shores before the end of January, but might become the de facto standard from that point on until the Oland family launches in the March/April time frame. Not that I’m not welcoming a change like this – it is good to see some extra kick from AMD’s steel-tipped boot to Nvidia’s bottom – but I can’t help but feel that the company should rather be seeing what they can do in the interim to fill in the gap between the HD7770 and the HD7850.
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