PC hardware enthusiasts have always been about bleeding edge performance. Overclocks, voltage mods, extreme cooling, it’s all part of PC aficionado’s arsenal. However, while we all know that keeping up with the latest and greatest can be expensive, it rarely gets as pricey as one ebay user’s recent acquisition: an engineering sample of AMD’s upcoming 7990 Malta GPU listed on ebay, which closed at $96,100 (£63,000).
This was just one bid among a hundred others that finally clinched the ultra-rare GPU. Considering the final price, it would be surprising if a large majority – if not the final one too – are troll bids, designed to just drive the price up to see how far it would go. If the winner hasn’t paid though, we’d likely have seen the Malta back up for sale by now, since its value is intrinsically linked to its lack of availability – and so far, there’s no sign of it. Unless AMD intervened and gave the auction lister a rollocking.
But I presume you want to know how powerful this thing is? For a full rundown keep an eye on your favourite review site in the near future, as I’m sure whichever one it is, it’ll have a copy of this card at some point. For now just know that it smashes all competition. GTX 690? beaten. Some leaked performance numbers can be found at WCCFtech, though of course until the NDA is up and these can be verified, don’t take them as gospel. Its in the public domain, so don’t blame us.
Specs wise the twin chip Malta is packing over 6GB of GDDR5, a core clock that breaches the Ghz barrier, a 2 x 384bit memory interface and it requires twin 8pin power connectors. Again, all information widely available on the net.
The question at this point turns to, how exactly did the ebay user wowbagger1234, manage to get himself an engineering sample of the card? Judging by his previous auctions on ebay (of which he’s been a member for nearly nine years) he just seems like an average dude, buying and selling average things. If he did net nearly $100,000, his standard of living just took a nice bump. Of course if its an AMD publicity stunt, it worked well.
KitGuru Says: Perhaps there are companies out there that release a product a bit early, let it be described as a leak so publicity is drummed up for the real launch. Not graphics card companies though. They’d never do that.