Originally Posted by Randomdude
I'm beginning to (realize through introspection)
feel like experiencing the first signs of denial that AMD isn't competitive. Let it be wrong. #prayforvega, as I saw on someone's signature.
They've been declining in most ways for a long time. The stopped offering the kind of variety needed a while ago. They lagged on mid-node refreshes. Drivers have remained mostly good, but software and features have been noncompetitive.
They've been competing very well in the die-size : performance area, often beating NV in how much performance they could pack into every square millimeter. You always knew they could release a much bigger flagship and take the crown, if they wanted. The problem is, NV can't allow that at all. They'd compete fiercely to take back the crown and they'd probably get it; it'd cost both of them a lot of money, and only consumers would earn. AMD didn't have that kind of money to throw away for nothing.
This has been the theme for I don't know how many years. Every time AMD gets going, they seem to run out of money and suffer a major setback. Tahiti and Bulldozer launching around the same time, for instance. Hawaii got pushed further and further away, and didn't hit as hard as it should have had it been released on time. The horrible reference cooler and temperature throttling. Fiji drivers took too long, and was clearly meant for Mantle, which flopped early. Vulkan will rise from the ashes and help Vega, but Volta will probably be launched just in time to reap all the benefits of the struggle AMD has had over the last few years trying to take advantage of new technologies.
Same old tragic story. That is, until now. Polaris is legitimately weak. 232² on the presumably superior 14nm process (NV wouldn't switch to an inferior node,) while the 1060 is 200mm² and performs 5-10% better.
It gives me the impression that AMD just hasn't been able to improve upon GCN all that much. If that's really the case, they're in a lot of trouble. They might be in the same kind of trouble they're in against Intel, with no money to catch up on design.
It's possible that GF/Samsung can achieve bigger dies with better yields, while TSMC will only offer better performance for smaller dies. If that's the case, things might still be equal between the two brands and the nodes might be the only difference. That's just wishful thinking, though.