Advanced Micro Devices is really late to the dual-GPU party. While it does have a Radeon HD 6990 adapter on sale, the same cannot be said about the HD 7990. Still, at least the problem is being addressed.
It is true that, back in 2012, a bunch of dual-Tahiti graphics cards appeared, but they were called Radeon HD 7970 X2 and were made by whichever AMD OEMs decided to bother.
Advanced Micro Devices itself has never released a reference design for such things.
The company revealed a Radeon HD 7990 dual-chip adapter created with the GraphicsCore Next Architecture (GCN).
Currently, it is known internally as “Malta” and, knowing how much the media seems to like codenames, that moniker will likely stick even after launch.
The board will be a means to stay afloat, so to speak. Since AMD won't bring out a new generation of GPUs until the fourth quarter of 2013, it needs something to tidy things over until then.
Radeon HD 7990 is, obviously, part of that tactic. A tactic that, if we understand things correctly, the corporation's various partners will aid.
We don't know how many custom-designed boards will come out, or whether AMD will even let them tweak the specs from the start. We don't really know those specifications actually, except for the big and bad triple-fan cooler.
There is one asset we have to comment on, however: the board has a dual-slot design, as opposed to most other overpowered cards with two chips, which take up three slots. The use of three fans allows for a slower rotary speed too, making the adapter “whisper quiet,” according to Matt Skynner, general manager of AMD's graphics business unit.
Last we heard, the official release was supposed to happen in the second quarter. Since the slide below is named as a preview, we might be looking at an early launch.