AMD Announces Radeon RX 7900 XTX / RX 7900 XT Graphics Cards - Linux Driver Support Expectations

Written by Michael Larabel in Graphics Cards on 3 November 2022. Page 1 of 1. 142 Comments

As was expected, AMD's Lisa Su just announced the Radeon RX 7000 series "RDNA3" graphics cards. AMD continues to back their graphics processors by fully open-source Linux driver support and Linux benchmarks will come on Phoronix for launch. Here are the initial details on the announced Radeon RX 7900 XT and Radeon RX 7900 XTX graphics cards.

AMD took to Las Vegas for their RDNA3 graphics card launch. While invited to the launch, unfortunately I wasn't able to make it in-person due to obligations this week with my son. But in any event there is the livestream and I should be reviewing the new AMD Radeon graphics cards under Linux to evaluate their support/performance soon. The RDNA3 graphics cards were announced today while the actual retail availability is not until December.

As I've been covering for months now on Phoronix, AMD has been working on the RDNA3 Linux graphics driver support in their usual open-source manner. The RDNA3 support continues building off the existing AMDGPU kernel DRM driver, RadeonSI Gallium3D, AMDGPU LLVM, and the AMDVLK LLVM shader compiler. Valve and Google engineers along with others have also been working on the initial support for Mesa's RADV Vulkan driver with ACO compiler back-end too.

Unlike with prior GPU launches where the open-source AMDGPU support was brought up under a big initial patch series with a colorful fishy codename, this time around AMD engineers began with a new IP block-by-block enablement strategy. By just enabling specific IP blocks at a time and relying on new smarter enumeration of the driver based on detected IP blocks, it's much harder to ascertain specific details of forthcoming GPUs pre-launch than under their former monolithic patch series approach. This has helped AMD get out patches sooner by having easier and smaller code review periods incrementally and less possibility of leaking any overall GPU product details.

While I don't yet have my hands on the new RDNA3 graphics cards (and embargoes anyhow), it's likely the minimum version requirement for RDNA3 Linux driver support will be Linux 6.0~6.1 and Mesa 22.2+. For the RADV Vulkan driver it will almost surely be Mesa 22.3+ as it appears the RADV developers don't yet have physical RDNA3 access or if they do it has only been very recently. but for Mesa 22.2 it looks like it may be in shape for RadeonSI Gallium3D. On the kernel side we'll see if Linux 6.0 stable is good enough or if Linux 6.1 Git -- which will be out as stable in December -- is a requirement. In any case stay tuned for my -- hopefully launch-day -- Linux review of the new hardware for finding out about the Linux support and performance.

I don't yet have any official information on whether there will be any ROCm support for RDNA3 at launch. Sadly it took rather long for RDNA/RDNA2 to see ROCm support but as potentially some good news there have been signs of RDNA3/GFX11 for ROCm being worked on so maybe there will indeed be ROCm compute support on the Radeon RX 7000 series in the near-term.

Anyhow, from Lisa's livestream today some of the key highlights there on product details include:

- Radeon RX 7900 XTX 24GB and Radeon RX 7900 XT 20GB are the initial launch graphics cards for the RDNA3 line-up.

- Radeon RX 7900 XTX is said to be up to 1.7x faster than the Radeon RX 6950 XT. The RX 7900 XTX has a 355 Watt board power.

- The Radeon RX 7900 XT has a 300 Watt board power.

- The Radeon RX 7900 XTX will be priced at $999 USD and the Radeon RX 7900 XT at $899 USD. Both cards will be available on 13 December.

- Radeon RX 7900 series is designed to offer viable 4K ray-traced gaming performance.

- AMD FSR3 was teased as AMD's newest FidelityFX Super Resolution tech. Up to 2x more FPS over FSR 2. FSR 3 will be released in 2023.

- AV1 is supported with RDNA3.

- Greatly enhanced ray-tracing capabilities.

- RDNA3 uses a dual issue SIMD units, 2x instruction issue rate over RDNA2.

- AI accelerator improvements are said to deliver up to 2.7x improvement in AI performance.

- 50% more performance per CU with the next-generation ray-tracing capabilities.

- 5nm graphics chiplets, 6nm for the cache MCD die.

- RDNA3 is based on a chiplet design, as expected.

- RDNA3 exceeded internal goals around power efficiency. 54% gen-over-gen improvement for performance-per-Watt.

- Up to 61 TeraFLOPS of compute power with RDNA3.

- Brand new media engine for RDNA3 as well as a new "Radiance Display" display engine. DisplayPort 2.1 is supported with the new AMD Radiance Display block. The new media engine supports dual encode/decode.

- 5.3TB/s peak memory bandwidth between chiplets, 24GB of GDDR6 video memory in the top-end model.

Stay tuned for my Radeon RX 7900 series Linux testing for all the details and analysis in full along with the Radeon RX 7900 series retail availability next month.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via TwitterLinkedIn,> or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.