It appears that non-reference R9 290 cards will hit the market ahead of custom R9 290X products. It should have been the other way around and to be honest we were expecting to see the first Hawaii boards by the end of November.
Now it seems that the cards are still a couple of weeks away, so the first ones might show up in shops just in time for Christmas. In many smaller markets they could even miss the holidays and show up in January.
Usually this would not be a big deal, we are used to waiting for custom cards, but when it comes to Hawaii, partner cards can’t come soon enough. Both the 290 and 290X feature a disappointing stock cooler and custom cards should make a huge difference.