AMD Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire

AMD Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire

The AMD Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire (also known as CF or CrossFireX) is a combination of two high-end graphics cards for big and heavy laptops. Usually, each single R9 M290X renders a single frame in an alternating manner. Therefore, it may suffer from micro stuttering in low frame rates below 30 FPS due to staggering timespans between two frames (e.g., irregular delays between sequential frames). Compared to the Radeon HD 8970M CF, the R9 M290X CF offers exactly the same amount of shaders and the same clock rates.

The R9 M290X is based on the desktop HD 7870 Pitcairn chip with 1280 1D shaders and 80 texture units. The GCN (graphics core next) architecture supports DirectX 12 (FL 11_1) and OpenGL 4.3. More information on the features of the single R9 M290X can be found on the GPU page.


The Performance of two R9 M290X GPUs in Crossfire mode is just slightly below the Nvidia GeForce GTX 780M SLI, but cannot compete with the GTX 880M SLI. Regardless, modern and demanding games like Battlefield 4 or Metro Last Light are still playable in high resolutions and max. settings with anti-aliasing.


Features of the M290X include the new UVD3 video decoder for decoding MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, VC-1, MPEG-2, Flash, Multi-View Codec (MVC) and MPEG-4 part 2 (DivX, xVid) HD videos directly from the AMD GPU.

The M290 series also supports automatic graphics switching between the integrated GPU and discrete GPU. Called Enduro, the technology supersedes AMD's Dynamic Switchable Graphics and is similar to Nvidia's Optimus. Furthermore, each M290X can directly support up to 6 connected monitors using Eyefinity Technology if Enduro is disabled.

Other features of the M290 series include ZeroCore for reducing power consumption when the display is turned off. Power Gating, however, is not supported according to AMD. PowerTune allows automatic overclocking and underclocking of the graphics card as long as the GPU is within its TDP range. For example, the chip may be underclocked when running FurMark and OCCT, but will overclock in certain games like Lost Planet, Crysis or Resident Evil 5.

The integrated HD audio processor is able to transmit HD Audio (TrueHD or DTS Master Audio) over HDMI and DisplayPort (e.g., for Blu-Ray videos). Additionally, it now allows audio to output simultaneously and in parallel to multiple devices with the new Discrete Digital Multipoint Audio (DDMA) feature.

Power Consumption

The power consumption of the CF combination is very high (2x 100 Watt) and thus only suited for very large desktop replacement laptops.

Radeon R9 M200 Series
Radeon R9 M290X Crossfire 2560 @ 850 - 900 (Boost) MHz2x 256 Bit @ 4800 MHz
Radeon R9 M295X (compare) 2048 @ 850 (Boost) MHz256 Bit @ 5448 MHz
Radeon R9 M290X (compare) 1280 @ 850 - 900 (Boost) MHz256 Bit @ 4800 MHz
Radeon R9 M280X (compare) 896 @ 900 - 1000 (Boost) MHz128 Bit @ 5500 MHz
Radeon R9 M275 (compare) 640 @ 925 MHz128 Bit @ 4500 MHz
Radeon R9 M270 (compare) 640 @ 725 MHz128 Bit @ 4500 MHz
Radeon R9 M265X (compare) 640 @ 625 MHz128 Bit @ 4000 MHz
CodenameNeptune CF
Pipelines2560 - unified
Core Speed850 - 900 (Boost) MHz
Memory Speed4800 MHz
Memory Bus Width2x 256 Bit
Memory TypeGDDR5
Max. Amount of Memory2x 4096 MB
Shared Memoryno
DirectXDirectX 12 (FL 11_1), Shader 5.0
Transistor Count2x 2800 Million
technology28 nm
Notebook Sizelarge
Date of Announcement01.03.2014


3DMark Vantage
P Result 1280x1024 +
P GPU no PhysX 1280x1024 +
SPECviewperf 12
Solidworks (sw-03) 1900x1060 +
Siemens NX (snx-02) 1900x1060 +
Showcase (showcase-01) 1900x1060 +
Medical (medical-01) 1900x1060 +
Maya (maya-04) 1900x1060 +
Energy (energy-01) 1900x1060 +
Creo (creo-01) 1900x1060 +
Catia (catia-04) 1900x1060 +
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit +
Cinebench R15
OpenGL 64Bit +
- Range of benchmark values for this graphics card
- Average benchmark values for this graphics card
* Smaller numbers mean a higher performance

Game Benchmarks

The following benchmarks stem from our benchmarks of review laptops. The performance depends on the used graphics memory, clock rate, processor, system settings, drivers, and operating systems. So the results don't have to be representative for all laptops with this GPU. For detailed information on the benchmark results, click on the fps number.



low 1024x768
60.3  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
57.3  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
57  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
52.1  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.
low 1024x768
70.8  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
43.1  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
21.5  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
17  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings med..
low 1024x768
53.2  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
50.1  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
37.4  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
27.1  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings high.
low 1024x768
152.4  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
132.2  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
120.6  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
77.2  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.
F1 2013

F1 2013

low 1024x768
118  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
98  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
96  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
86  fps    + Compare
» With all tested laptops playable in detail settings ultra.
low 1280x720
67  fps    + Compare
med. 1366x768
55.9  fps    + Compare
high 1366x768
50.2  fps    + Compare
ultra 1920x1080
48.6  fps    + Compare