Earlier this month AMD announced the R9 series graphics cards that included the $200 Radeon R9 270X offering based upon the "Curacao XT" graphics core. This Volcanic Islands graphics card in Microsoft Windows benchmarks has been faster than a Radeon HD 7870, but today we have the first Linux test results and compatibility information available. This article serves as our first Linux review of the AMD R9 270X -- or any Rx 200 series graphics card for that matter -- in the form of the Gigabyte Radeon R9 270X 2GB.
The Radeon R9 270X "Curacao XT" core is comprised of 2.8 billion transistors on a 212 mm2 die. The R9 270X core is clocked at 1000MHz with a 1050MHz boost frequency and a 1400MHz GDDR5 video memory frequency. The Radeon R9 270X has 2560 GFLOPS of single-precision processing power and 160 GFLOPS of double-precision compute power. The maximum TDP on this graphics card is 180 Watts. With the Radeon R9 270X (and R280X) having been available for two weeks now as their first "Volcanic Islands" hardware, you have likely ready plenty about the new architecture and other new details, and the fact that AMD hadn't provided any review samples or even any press slides, we'll leave the overview brief and stick to where we provide our value: the Linux information and results.
Unfortunately AMD hasn't seemed interested in ensuring Linux gamers and open-source enthusiasts see how their latest hardware performs and what the driver options are like, but due to my personal curiosity and in being devoted to serving the Linux readership particularly those Phoronix Premium members, I ended up purchasing a retail Gigabyte Radeon R9 270X for today's benchmarking. The Gigabyte R9 270X (GV-R927XOC-2GD) I began testing last week and has 2GB of GDDR5 video memory with an effective 5600MHz frequency, 1050MHz core clock, and 1100MHz boost clock speed. The price on this graphics card was $210 USD.
Included with the Gigabyte Radeon R9 270X GV-R927XOC-2GD was a simple Gigabyte customer information pamphlet, a Windows AMD GPU driver CD, two 4-pin molex to 6-pin PCI-E power adapters, and one flexible CrossFire bridge.