Fabless chip shop AMD was set to launch its “Cayman” GPU (aka AMD Radeon HD 6970) in the week of November 22nd – just in time for the tech-Xmas season – but reliable word from the Taiwanese street is that the product has been delayed due to yield problems at apparently not-so-fab Fab TSMC.
The high-end HD 6970 Cayman GPU-based board is reported to have a whopping 2GB of GDDR5 memory and a 256-bit controller which – at least in terms of RAM quantity- is more powerful than Nvidia’s upcoming GeForce GTX 580 card which only sports a sniff-worthy 1.5GB.
Of course, as most people with common sense know, 1GB is more than enough for even the most high end cards, but GPUs are an ego based game and bigger is always better – at least according to the mad men of tech marketing.
It doesn’t matter how big you are, however, if you don’t show up and put some skin in the game which, according to our talkative Taiwanese buddies is likely the case for AMD which simply cannot yield the product in any significant volume at manufacturer TSMC on time.
According to our sources, yields for Cayman are still in the single digits and there’s minimal chance AMD will have any shot of achieving its schedule or production/ship targets for Q4. This could also really hurt if Nvidia successfully launches its GTX 580 in volume – despite its smaller RAM offering.
No doubt this will all come to light when samples slated for press testing get held up in the holiday post. We’ll bring you more as we hear it.