Aug 12, 2023

AMD shows off limited edition Starfield graphics card and more cool hardware

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Advanced Micro Devices showed off some cool stuff recently including a limited edition Starfield graphics card.

Unveiled at QuakeCon, the graphics card from AMD isn’t going to be for sale, as AMD isn’t inclined to compete with its own add-in card vendors. But Frank Azor, the games evangelist at AMD, said in an interview that the company believes the game will be terrific and it could do something to draw attention to the game from Bethesda, which is the company’s first new major intellectual property in decades. AMD is bundling the game with the Radeon-based graphics cards.

“A lot of nice work and detail went into this,” Azor said, noting how the wiring follows the color scheme of the game. “Our marketing teams and our Radeon product teams got together and started whiteboarding.”

The cards will go out to influencers in a limited number of activations and unboxing videos. AMD designed a custom shroud for an add-in card with the same basic industrial design as other cards. But when the heatsink reaches a certain temperature, certain lettering will reveal itself.

“This is marketing and we’re trying to pick games where there’s a lot of emotion,” Azor said. “We’re starting to do some more of these things to try to make the component more than this invisible thing that you put in the box.”

Azor also showed off a close-up prototype of the Framework laptop, which is a do-it-yourself laptop with different parts that snap together. It is upgradeable, expandable and repairable.

The prototype gives gamers all kinds of options for customization. He showed how you can easily open up the device and see different swappable parts. You can take out the ports and put in different ones such as USB-C ports. You slide the port into a slot and lock it in place.

You can put in a flashy RGB-lit keyboard or other personal touches, like adding a left-handed or right-handed touchpad. You can also eliminated a touchpad. You can change WiFi adapters and swap out an accelerated processing unit or a discrete graphics card.

AMD also showed a video of image generation using Stable Diffusion. You can use it to easily generate images within seconds. You can generate those images locally in the GPU memory if you don’t want it to be in the cloud.

You can type in words like a supercar Ferrari and it will generate the images for you.

Azor also showed off Hyper RX, which highlights features for things like super resolution, a driver-based upscaler. You can use it to upscale images even if the game vendor hasn’t created a special edition to support hardware features. Prior to RX you would have to have FSR supported in a specific game.

All of this is in service of marketing for new graphics chips and cards that are coming soon.

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