Where do current workstation graphics cards from both manufacturers stand when it comes to design, construction, simulation, 3D visualization and creation? Has AMD been able to catch up or even overtake with the new lineup of Radeon Pro graphics cards or are Ada and Ampere still the measure of all things? I’ll try to find objective answers to this today and have therefore largely dispensed with automatable, synthetic benchmarks. The insights gained are quite interesting, because one can certainly come close to many things, but probably never reach the absolute truth.
Professional applications are much too complex to be able to make a truly universal statement. However, it is possible to work out trends that are either architecture- or driver-related. In the end, everyone can decide for themselves in which area they see the best card for the money. Whereby the money in the workstation sector is rather relative, because if you want to earn money, you first have to spend it. Unfortunately, this old wisdom still applies today
NVIDIA RTX Ada, RTX Ampere as well as RTX Pascal
These cards are also mostly in the archive as permanent loan or own acquisition. However, the Ada and Ampere lineup is not quite complete yet, so here and today my special thanks go to PNY and MIFCOM. MIFCOM was kind enough to fill up my Ampere lineup, the rest of the cards including the new Ada cards are still in the process of being added by PNY. A little patience is required, because the just launched cards still need their travel time. What was available was of course tested immediately, so that I already have 14 current test objects in the sum of all cards. This number will of course increase when I will test the outstanding cards as well as the older Pascal cards at a later time.
AMD Radeon Pro W7900, W7800, W7600 and W7500
All these cards are still quite fresh and the not yet launched Radeon Pro W7700 is still missing, as well as the respective consumer counterparts. But that can certainly be made up for. I don’t want to anticipate the result here yet, but AMD definitely has chances to score properly in some areas with these cards. Of course, there is still a certain gap in NVIDIA’s parade disciplines, but it has generally become smaller. And if the price is right (and AMD also likes to compare the cards according to price), then the professional user can certainly find bargains. If you can even put it that casually at these prices. Thanks to AMD’s sampling, these cards are permanently in my inventory and can thus also be permanently retested. In addition, there are two cards of the somewhat neglected previous generation.
Test software and workstation
The software package includes 4 large software suites from PTC Inc, Dassault Systèmes, Autodesk as well as Adobe and of course the usual standard software like Blender. I use professional or standardized workloads and do without synthetic benchmarks for this. The only exception here is SPECviewperf 2020, which I deliberately included because it allows you to do two things. Firstly, you can see in direct comparison to the full versions where the graphics card manufacturers have optimized
the drivers to look particularly good. And secondly, everyone can benchmark it themselves to be able to draw a direct comparison.
Even if NVIDIA would have liked to see it differently, today it is only conditionally about AI and computers (but also). It was important for me that there are programs in the test that run on all architectures and thus also allow a direct comparison. We’ll also see that some tasks don’t require an ultra-expensive high-end card at all. These findings are also important when it comes to an investment decision. Practicality is the new magic word.
The workstation is a PC with an Intel Core i9-13900K on an MSI Z790 Godlike (I know, it’s a gaming board) and 64GB of DDR5 PC6000 CL30, though I intentionally run the memory as DDR5 5200 only. The performance difference to DDR5 6000 is marginal in this application area, especially since I had a case where after a longer Creo run with 5 iterations with DDR5 6000 the system froze shortly before the end. By the way, this is also the reason why I only allow the Core i9-13900K a PL1 and PL2 of 125 watts. It’s not a gaming PC and stability, as always, comes first. Time is pure money and a potential data loss can’t be excused with anything. It’s all cooled with a simple 360 Silent-Loop 2 AiO from be quiet! and I put the workstation in a Fractal Meshify XL, just like the VGA test station.
I deliberately chose a professional solution for the monitor. The almost frameless BenQ PD322020U is large enough with its 31.5 inch diagonal and 3840 x 2160 pixels, has an excellent AHVA panel from AU Optronics and almost completely covers the required color spaces with 10 bit color depth (1.07 billion colors). The ergonomics are almost perfect and you can turn it (up to the pivot function) however you want – a setting always fits. Not quite up to date, but proven.
|CPU||Intel Core i9-13900K @ 125W (PL2 = PL1)|
|RAM||64 (2x 32) GB Corsair Dominator Platinum DDR5 PC6000 CL30 @ DDR5 5200|
|Mainboard||MSI MEG Z790 Godlike|
|Cooler||Be Quiet Silent Loop 2, 360 mm|
|PSU||Be Quiet! Dark Power 1000 Watt|
|SSD||2x 2 GB Netac NI7000-t NVMe|
|Case||Fractal Meshify XL|
|OS||Windows 11 Professional (all updates)|
R535 U4 (536.96)
AMD Software Pro Edition:
PNY NVIDIA RTX 6000 Ada Generation, 48GB GDDR6, 4x DP, Smallbox (VCNRTX6000ADA-SB)
|Ab Zentrallager sofort lieferbar||8990,88 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:41|
|lagernd, 1-3 Werktage||8990,89 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:45|
|Lieferbar in 3-10 Tagen, Lieferzeit 4-14 Werktage||9298,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:38|
PNY NVIDIA RTX 5000 Ada Generation, 32GB GDDR6, 4x DP (VCNRTX5000ADA-PB)
|Lieferbar in 3-10 Tagen, Lieferzeit 4-14 Werktage||6005,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:38|
|Ab Zentrallager sofort lieferbar||6010,43 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:41|
|TaufNaus||Lieferzeit 3-5 Werktage||6050,94 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:03|
PNY NVIDIA RTX 4000 SFF Ada Generation, 20GB GDDR6, 4x mDP (VCNRTX4000ADALP-PB)
|Ab Zentrallager sofort lieferbar||1619,33 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:41|
|lagernd, 1-3 Werktage||1619,34 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:45|
|Ab Lager lieferbar - Lieferzeit 2-4 Werktage||1633,67 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:26|
PNY NVIDIA RTX A6000, 48GB GDDR6, 4x DP, Smallbox (VCNRTXA6000-SB)
|lagernd, 1-3 Werktage||5005,27 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:45|
|Ab Zentrallager sofort lieferbar||5018,24 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:41|
|Abhol-/Versandbereit in 1-3 Werktagen||5018,26 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:39|
AMD Radeon PRO W7900, 48GB GDDR6, 3x DP, mDP (100-300000074)
|Sofort verfügbar, Lieferzeit max. 1-3 Werktage||3990,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:38|
|Auf Lager||3999,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:35|
|4-6 Werktage||4005,99 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:18|
AMD Radeon PRO W7800, 32GB GDDR6, 3x DP, mDP (100-300000075)
|Sofort verfügbar, Lieferzeit max. 1-3 Werktage||2586,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:38|
|Abhol-/Versandbereit in 1-3 Werktagen||2593,90 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:39|
|lagernd (1 Stück), Lieferung sofort möglich||2599,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:42|
AMD Radeon PRO W7600, 8GB GDDR6, 4x DP (100-300000077)
|lagernd (1 Stück), Lieferung sofort möglich||619,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:42|
|Abhol-/Versandbereit in 1-3 Werktagen||625,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:39|
|Zentrallager: >5 Stück bestellt, wird in 2 Werktagen erwartetFiliale Wilhelmshaven: >5 Stück bestellt, wird in 2 Werktagen erwartetStand: 04.10.23 10:43||628,92 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:49|
AMD Radeon PRO W7500, 8GB GDDR6, 4x DP (100-300000078)
|lagernd (1 Stück), Lieferung sofort möglich||439,00 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:42|
|Abhol-/Versandbereit in 1-3 Werktagen||447,64 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:39|
|2-4 Tage||448,99 €*Stand: 04.10.23 10:42|