Radeon VII Viable Now?

Arx Allemand

Member
Sep 24, 2019
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I can get this card barely used for $450.
Not doing gaming on it, would be for content creation (editing audio/video, etc.)
Maybe some 3D work/rendering.
Also Prime Grid DC stuff.
Would be paired up to a 3970X.

The other option is a 2080ti but this looks to be better for gaming which I have no interest in.

My main concern is everywhere I'm reading this card is already listed EOL so driver support may be an issue in the not so distant future.
 

Micrornd

Golden Member
Mar 2, 2013
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I use my Radeon VII for some of the things you outlined (content creation (editing audio/video, etc.), 3D work/rendering) as well as some game play.
Everything is done at 4k.
Yes, the card is EOL, but AMD has indicated it will have driver support for a long time, and so far they are living up to that.
It serves my needs well and I have no intent of replacing it until something comes along that will be a true cost and performance upgrade @ 4k usage.
If you are not working at 4k, another card may suit your needs, but getting one that does for $450 is going to be something only you can decide based on cost vs speed vs productivity.
Good luck !
 
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Arx Allemand

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Sep 24, 2019
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Thanks for the info!
I'm using two LG monitors, one is 4096x2160 and the other is 5120x2160 wide.
I edit 8K and 4K footage both on Mac and PC.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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Yea I've got one that I picked up at a discount and it's a great card. I basically only bought it because it's a refined Vega card with double memory but I'll probably throw a WB on it because it runs hot.
 

Igo69

Senior member
Apr 26, 2015
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A somewhat related. I have Radeon R9 Fury that is now 5 years old i use latest radeon software and play latest games on high settings with no issues.
 
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Arx Allemand

Member
Sep 24, 2019
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Been using this for a few days.
It's a beast!
The fans at idle are nearly silent (outside of a case they are inaudible).
When under load and the fans start to speed up there is a weird noise, almost sounds like coil whine. I believe it may be a PCM driver / harmonics. It soon disappears as the fans become audible. But rendering under load for several hours the fans are noticeable but not bothersome at all.
 

SirCanealot

Member
Jan 12, 2013
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Remember you can easily slap a small undervolt on the Radeon VII in the AMD drivers to quiet it down and reduce power usage quite a bit. I can't remember the exact figures, but I think most cards could do -50mv, most -75mv?
Do some research ;)
 
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Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
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Yep, essentially every Radeon VII can be undervolted -50mV, most -75, some -100 or more at stock clocks. It helps keep power consumption and temps significantly lower with no performance hit or even a small performance increase due to being able to maintain higher boost clocks. It's a sweet card if you keep it cool.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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Actually picked up a second VII at a steeply discounted price, because the original owner was convinced it failed on them after an update.

radeonVII.jpg

I'm gonna see if it's indeed toast; if so, I'll use it for parts but I have a feeling they were just having driver/OS issues.
 
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Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
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Actually picked up a second VII at a steeply discounted price, because the original owner was convinced it failed on them after an update.

View attachment 21230

I'm gonna see if it's indeed toast; if so, I'll use it for parts but I have a feeling they were just having driver/OS issues.
Unless it he was trying to do some sort of BIOS hack on the card that he screwed up, your suspicion is probably correct. Good luck!
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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Unfortunately, my gamble didn't pay off... this card isn't detected by any of my systems at all. It doesn't even get that warm so I think it's kaput. Oh well, you win some and you lose some.

I also tried the card as a secondary GPU, for additional testing purposes on a 850W system, but no dice. I've read that this is a fairly common problem with these cards; might be part of the reason AMD discontinued them after less than 6 months.
 

Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
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That's a shame. Sorry to hear it. Have you checked to see if it's still under warranty? If it came from AMD directly it may be out of warranty since they only offered 1 year, but most of their partners' cards had at least a 2 year warranty on them. Though whether it's transferable would also depend on the manufacturer.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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The card actually is still covered under ASRock's warranty, so that's certainly a viable option. I might as well take advantage of it I guess, though it'll probably end up costing me $30 to ship it all the way across the country. On the upside a replacement would likely arrive before I could get around to stripping it for parts... hmm
 

Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
287
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I'd say a working replacement card is considerably more valuable than a dead one being stripped for parts, even with a $30 postage fee. I've done an RMA with Asrock before and it's a bit slow going through the process of getting an RMA number (expect it to take close to 2 weeks from when you first submit the ticket), but other than that pretty hassle free.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
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2 weeks? i inquired a few days ago and it's already on it's way to them lol, they actually approved it pretty quick--but i was pleasantly surprised.

needless to say i thought the same... regarding a working card vs a pile of proprietary parts.
 

Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
287
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101
Nice! Yeah, it took them a long time to respond to my initial ticket (more than a full week), and then 1-2 days for a response on each back and forth of the correspondence. Glad to hear they have gotten more timely!
 

DrMrLordX

Lifer
Apr 27, 2000
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Yep, essentially every Radeon VII can be undervolted -50mV, most -75, some -100 or more at stock clocks. It helps keep power consumption and temps significantly lower with no performance hit or even a small performance increase due to being able to maintain higher boost clocks. It's a sweet card if you keep it cool.
I run my waterblocked Radeon VII @ 1020mV, 1235 MHz RAM, and +50% power limit (for the lulz). Stock voltage is 1136mV.

edit: when I'm running stuff where GPU performance isn't critical, that is.
 

piokos

Senior member
Nov 2, 2018
554
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Yep, essentially every Radeon VII can be undervolted -50mV, most -75, some -100 or more at stock clocks. It helps keep power consumption and temps significantly lower with no performance hit or even a small performance increase due to being able to maintain higher boost clocks. It's a sweet card if you keep it cool.
You should NOT undervolt a GPU for tasks that require stability and robustness. And OP said it's for computing, not gaming.
 
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DrMrLordX

Lifer
Apr 27, 2000
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You should NOT undervolt a GPU for tasks that require stability and robustness. And OP said it's for computing, not gaming.
Since when? Have you seen how little power Radeon VII uses in compute functions?
 

Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
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You should NOT undervolt a GPU for tasks that require stability and robustness. And OP said it's for computing, not gaming.
AMD has a long history of setting stock voltages much higher than they need to be for most cards. Every card is unique so yes it's possible to get a dud that can't be undervolted stably, but that is exceedingly rare. There is no risk to determining the lowest stable undervolt for a card and setting it ~20 mV higher than that just for peace of mind, regardless of application. As the card ages, maybe you have to tweak the voltage up another 10-20 mv a year or two down the line. In the meantime you've saved yourself a ton of unnecessary heat and power consumption.
 

piokos

Senior member
Nov 2, 2018
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Since when? Have you seen how little power Radeon VII uses in compute functions?
Since the 1950s, more or less.

Chip operates properly in a particular range of voltages. It doesn't work at all when voltage is too high or too low.
But there's also an interim range when a chip seems to work but relatively often has trouble writing or reading a bit.

This causes so called "artifacts".
Gamers may be willing to accept this, since what they experience are rare mistakes in pixel colour.
People using chips for computing, especially in production systems, aren't that eager to accept this kind of consequnces.
 

piokos

Senior member
Nov 2, 2018
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AMD has a long history of setting stock voltages much higher than they need to be for most cards. Every card is unique so yes it's possible to get a dud that can't be undervolted stably, but that is exceedingly rare.
And how do you assess whether GPU is working properly after undervolting?
 

Feld

Senior member
Aug 6, 2015
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And how do you assess whether GPU is working properly after undervolting?
System stability, and assessment of the results of intended compute loads?

I get the feeling you're referring to supercomputers, AWS servers, and the like. Rest assured, nobody running that sort of equipment is coming here for advice.
 

DrMrLordX

Lifer
Apr 27, 2000
19,927
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Since the 1950s, more or less.

Chip operates properly in a particular range of voltages. It doesn't work at all when voltage is too high or too low.
But there's also an interim range when a chip seems to work but relatively often has trouble writing or reading a bit.

This causes so called "artifacts".
Gamers may be willing to accept this, since what they experience are rare mistakes in pixel colour.
People using chips for computing, especially in production systems, aren't that eager to accept this kind of consequnces.
I am well aware of what are artifacts. You can undervolt a GPU without causing them. Especially if they are AMD GPUs.

Running stock, I can undervolt my Radeon VII by 116 mV without artifacts or crashing. It will complete multiple runs of Blender Benchmark or AIDA64 GPGPU benchmark. Or GPUPI or whatever else.
 

EXCellR8

Diamond Member
Sep 1, 2010
3,894
792
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I haven't really played around with undervolting the VII, but perhaps when my other card comes back I'll give it a try. The one I have in operation doesn't get too warm, but certainly is a bit noisy at full tilt.
 

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