Upgrade! Speed things up with the right components
Performance always comes at a cost, but thanks to FirePro's range of graphics cards you needn't break the bank to get your hands on the incredible power of OpenCL. They're available as add-in PC cards, but you'll also find FirePro chips in mobile workstation laptops and even lurking in the upcoming Mac Pro.
The least-expensive FirePro card still – the W5000
– packs a muscular amount of processing prowess. Described as "the most powerful midrange workstation graphics card ever created”, it can process up to 1.65-billion triangles a second, which is up to four times more than the competitor's solution. It's fantastic if you want to create simple 2D effects and images, and want to work with up to three monitors at once.
Next in line is the W7000
, which is more suited to light 3D applications. A stereoscopic connector is included so you can create expansive 3D content. GeometryBoost cleverly scales up the processing power so it can deal with vertexes and primitives a twice the speed of the competition.
is where it gets really amazing, and it's a fantastic card for complex 3D creation work. Its PRT (partially resident textures) technology means it can work with huge texture files up to 32 terabytes in size, which as any 3D artist knows is the key to creating lifelike graphics. This is on top of four displayport connections, and the GeometryBoost feature of the W7000.
Six is the magic number for the W9000
, but we're guessing that the W6666 didn't quite have the same ring to it. It boasts 6GB of GDDR5 memory, as well as six DisplayPort connectors. 4.0 teraflops of single precision floating point performance makes it intimidatingly powerful, and 3D graphics performance is 1.5 times faster than the competitor's equivalent card. It's the kind of card which will see you through many years of high-end computing creativity.
You needn't be tied to a desktop, either, and mobile 3D graphics are becoming more and more common. Dell's Precision M4800 laptop
includes an AMD FirePro M5100 graphics chip, which is roughly equivalent to the W5000 card, while the Precision M6800
packs an M6100 chip. You'll never need to go to the office again.
The AMD advantage
An AMD FirePro card is next to essential for digital artists and content producers in all walks of life, from creating incredible Photoshop images to editing ultra-high-definition video files. It's certainly the edge you need to take your work to the next level, and the sheer array of cards available make them affordable for just about anyone.
It's also worth noting that investing in a FirePro card will keep you going for many years to come. Each comes with a three-year warranty, as well as support from AMD itself rather than third parties. Stick an FirePro card in your rig, and not only will it be hugely powerful, but you'll also be safe in the knowledge that it's future-proofed too.
AMD and Adobe at NAB 2013
Video courtesy of AMD.
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