If you are a computer builder, you have probably bought a graphics card before. Sure, some people - like yours truly - like to utilise on-board graphics when possible to save money, but for the best gaming performance, a dedicated GPU is ideal.
For businesses, however, gaming is not typically a priority. With that said, some companies still have a need for a powerful GPU in a workstation depending on their needs. For instance, if your business works with CAD, it is essential. Today, AMD unveils the FirePro W4300 - a low-profile beast. It features 4GB of GDDR5 and four mini Display Ports in a svelte package - perfect for small form factor machines.
"The AMD FirePro W4300 professional graphics card is optimised for the latest CAD applications including Autodesk AutoCAD, Inventor as well as Revit, Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks and CATIA, PTC Creo, Siemens NX, and many more. Engineering professionals can efficiently work with large geometry-intense models and apply GPU-accelerated features in their projects, such as the new Order Independent Transparency (OIT) mode supported in SOLIDWORKS. Users can help increase productivity by visualising their workflows across up to six displays, and up to 4K and 5K resolution", says Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.
Sean Burke, corporate vice president and general manager, Radeon Technologies Group, AMD explains, "we designed the AMD FirePro W4300 specifically for CAD. CAD users rely on AMD FirePro graphics cards to enable their application features to best visualise their designs, and now can continue to do so without having to compromise by using the latest energy efficient, small form factor workstations".
Not only is it available for low-profile workstations, but it only takes up a single slot. This increases the possibility of it fitting in existing workstations. Had it taken up two slots, it might have blocked access to other potentially needed PCIe slots beneath it. The only potential downside, you see, is that the small fan could be noisy under load. You must also make sure that any cards below it do not block the fan.
If you are a CAD professional and excited about this card - as you should be - you won't have to wait long. The card is already in mass-production, and should be available in early 2016 - January, I hope. Pricing is currently unknown.
Will you buy it? Check out the specs below and tell me in the comments.
4GB GDDR5 memory
128-bit memory interface
Up to 96 GB/s memory bandwidth
768 stream processors (12 compute units)
1.43 TFLOPS peak single precision floating point performance
Four Mini-DisplayPort display outputs
DisplayPort 1.2a support, including Adaptive-Sync and HBR2 support
Maximum DisplayPort 1.2a resolution 4096x2160
Maximum DisplayPort 1.1 resolution 2560x1600
API & OS Support
DirectX 11.2 / 12
Shader Model: 5.0
Microsoft Windows 10, Windows 8.1 and Windows 7 (32- or 64-bit)
Linux (32- or 64-bit)
Available PCIe x16 (single-slot), 3.0 for optimal performance
4GB system memory
Microsoft Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 7 or Linux OS (32- or 64-bit)
Internet connection for driver installation