Word comes from AMD via a press release this morning that they are giving the Radeon R9 Nano a price cut. AMD’s diminutive flagship, which launched in September 2015 at $649, is now the first Fiji card to get an official price cut, with AMD lowering the MSRP to $499 effective immediately.

The third card based on AMD’s flagship Fiji GPU, the Radeon R9 Nano was in a sense a culmination of AMD’s design goals for Fiji. Seeking to take full advantage of the compact packaging afforded by the use of High Bandwidth Memory, AMD packed a fully enabled Fiji into a Mini-ITX sized video card designed especially for small form factor systems. The resulting card was neither a performance flagship card like the Fury X nor a clear second-tier card like the regular Fury, but rather a third card that occupied its own niche within the PC market. This coupled with its unique power binning requirements led to it being launched as a micro-sized alternative to the full Fury X at the same $649 MSRP.

This marks the first instance of a significant price cut for a Fiji card – since their respective launches we’ve seen all three cards drift lower by only $50 or so – and that the card receiving a price drop is AMD’s most recently launched Fiji card is a bit surprising. From a price/performance perspective the Nano was essentially priced as a luxury card, with AMD banking on being able to charge a premium for its improved power efficiency and small size. Today’s price drop essentially puts an end to that, especially since the two Fury cards are not receiving a price cut of their own. With that said, the Nano’s power requirements call for what is arguably the best Fiji chip bin, so that adds another wrinkle to the entire situation.

More interesting perhaps is where this puts the R9 Fury (vanilla), which can already be found for as low at $499. The R9 Fury is only a few percent faster than the R9 Nano and noticeably more power hungry as well, so if the R9 Fury remains at $499 then it's hard to imagine the R9 Nano not being disruptive to R9 Fury sales.

Finally, it’s also worth noting that this comes just days after NVIDIA’s most recent game bundle announcement. Although not specifically addressed by AMD, this may be their response to that bundle in order to shore up their lineup against the similarly-priced GTX 980. Especially since this now places AMD's most power efficient card against NVIDIA's most efficient card, offering about 5% better performance for 5% higher power consumption.

Winter 2016 GPU Pricing Comparison
  $629 GeForce GTX 980 Ti
Radeon R9 Fury X $599  
Radeon R9 Fury
Radeon R9 Nano
  $479 GeForce GTX 980
Radeon R9 390X $379  
Radeon R9 390 $299 GeForce GTX 970
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  • blppt - Thursday, January 14, 2016 - link

    Whoops, just realized thats not true 4k---3440x1440. Still, no discernable memory problems.
  • eldakka - Tuesday, January 12, 2016 - link

    VR in a single slot such that you get 1 dedicated GPU per eye for things like the Oculus? Kudos tho if you are one of the few that can afford a $599 Oculus + a $1k Fury X2!
  • blppt - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    The problem is, the crossfire support from AMD has been considerably behind Nvidia, especially lately since AMD's overtaxed driver team has to spend more time fighting Gameworks for SINGLE gpus first.

    Its a shame because it seems to be that AMD has the superior hardware, but their driver model and updates/optimizations are so glacial that we only see that hardware take its lead over the Nvidia equivalent very late in their lifespan, when most "cutting edge" adopters have already moved on to the new generation.
  • medi03 - Thursday, January 14, 2016 - link

    Check AMD's crossfire scaling vs SLI. AMD wins hands down.
  • blppt - Friday, January 15, 2016 - link

    I'm telling you firsthand that AMD's CFX driver support is far behind Nvidia in terms of release schedule. I have both AMD and Nvidia dual card setups and I am pretty much always waiting for AMD CFX updates for AAA titles for a month after release.

    Maybe AMDs hardware is pretty much always superior to the direct Nvidia competition, but the glacial release of optimal drivers really hurt.

    Heck, even the latest 16.1 betas dont have a CFX profile for Fallout 4 yet. I have had good success with forcing AFR friendly with the 16.1(s), but thats not an official solution---some people's results may vary.
  • wolfemane - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    AMD might set the price to $499 on this card but retail still has them listed well over the $600 mark (found one deal with a mail in rebate that drops the price to $595). I guess we will see over the next few months how much that price drops, but I seriously doubt they will drop much below $600 before the next series of cards is released.

    It's not hard to list prices from popular retailers. MSRP is very misleading on review sites, and Anandtech is one of the few sites who don't list retail pricing alongside MSRP.
  • extide - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    I am sure the retail prices will drop soon enough. All it takes is one major retailer dropping the price and then everyone has to follow..
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, January 13, 2016 - link

    Jet.com has been reportedly buying cards from other retailers and then selling them at a loss. That hasn't caused other retailers to drop their prices has it?
  • webdoctors - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    It's pretty rare for the retail price to be higher than MSRP. Usually the price is 10% or more LESS than MSRP. How would a retailer justify selling a card higher than the MSRP? Unless its a crazy high demand item, that normally doesn't fly. Especially because some manufacturers even print the MSRP on the box/bag itself...
  • KateH - Monday, January 11, 2016 - link

    I do see higher-than-MSRP prices for high-end GPUs somewhat often, but I think that has more to do with the OEMs setting higher prices for non-reference cards. I've been seeing Fury (/nano/X) and 980Ti prices 50$ higher than MSRP lately. But yeah, usually it's lower. I've been buying all my parts from Microcenter for awhile and their prices are often alarmingly lower than MSRP. No idea how they can stay in business selling so low at brick and mortar retail but I'll take it!

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