Something overlooked by many is how many systems from large OEMs do not have available PCIe power connectors. For these applications, adding GPUs is limited to only PCIe-powered units. For that market, there is a new card in town, the AMD Radeon Pro W7500 that uses a relatively paltry 70W (1/10th of top-end GPUs today) and has 8GB of memory. Let us take a look.
AMD Radeon Pro W7600 8GB 130W Single Slot GPU Launched
First off, AMD is launching this $429 card alongside the higher-end AMD Radeon Pro W7600 at ($599.)
These new cards join the higher-end AMD Radeon Pro W7900 and W7800 GPUs that cost several times as much.
AMD’s focus is to penetrate the high-volume market, which makes sense as NVIDIA is focused on the high-end data center AI GPU market at the moment.
The new AMD Radeon Pro W7500 is based on TSMC 6. Here we still get RDNA 3 features like AV1, but we get much more limited performance.
While AMD is happy to tout the fact it has DisplayPort 2.1 for high-end displays, one of the other exciting parts of this is the AV1 encoding in this generation that was not present in the W6600 series.
AMD is positioning the W7500 against the NVIDIA T1000. The NVIDIA T1000 is a low-profile 50W card that we have seen in some of our Project TinyMiniMicro style systems at 1L in volume. The W7500 is 70W and a full-height card so it is not going to fit in the extremely small form factor PCs. We will note, as we saw with the Beelink GTR7 and Minisforum UM790 Pro AMD’s APUs are pushing into the lower end of the market to the point that a T1000-class GPU might not be necessary.
The interesting part about AMD’s messaging is the light discussion of AI. There was a single slide on AI that had a number of names of generative AI platforms on the left, many were repeated.
In this class of GPU, perhaps the expectation is that most of the AI acceleration is happening on the CPU and any onboard AI accelerators there.
AMD Radeon Pro W7500 Photos
These cards arrived too late for our full review process to happen before the embargo, but we managed to edit the photos of the card. First, here is the AMD Radeon Pro W7600 and key specs inside the box:
Here is the front of the card. While it is still full height, it is also shorter and the fan does not pass through the card like it does on the AMD Radeon Pro W7600.
Here is the back of the card where there is a lot going on. Even in the $400 GPU segment, we would prefer a full backplate just to protect the card.
Here is the quad DisplayPort 2.1 output on the back of the card and the single slot bracket. That is one of the advantages of the single-slot full-height card as one does not have to resort to using mini-DP.
Since this is a 70W card and relatively lightweight, we do not have an auxiliary CPU power connector nor mounting holes for a retention bracket.
As with the W7600, we have a hole on the top of the GPU near the rear I/O bracket that seems to just be for airflow.
Overall, this is a good set of specs for the lower-power GPU.
AMD Radeon Pro W7500 Performance Per AMD
The cards arrived just as the team was taking a summer weekend off. Still, AMD provided its generational comparison versus the W6600. The drop in power was accompanied by a drop in performance even with the new generation. AMD says that in SPECviewperf2020 the new card is 68% to 98% of the speed of its W6600 predecessor, but at around 54% of the power.
Here is the 3D content creation and animation compared to the NVIDIA A2000 and T1000.
Here is the Digital Photography and Video comparison:
Here is the 3D CAD and Visualization:
Overall good results, but it is a bit harder to compare GPUs from NVIDIA that have different TDP ranges.
A 70W PCIe slot-powered GPU is going to be interesting for many folks. Low power consumption and the ability to add a GPU to most existing platforms is a great capability. Still, this is the type of card that needs to continually evolve over time. AMD has its professional software and certifications to go with these cards, but often these are used more for adding extra display outputs to a system.
Stay tuned for more content on the AMD Radeon Pro W7600 and W7500 in the near future.