It was a critical day, and as such, expectations were at an all-time high. After several desperate moves by NVIDIA that was not very well understood (RTX 3060, cancellations or delays), AMD has taken a step forward with a graphics card for the upper mid-range: RX 6700 XT. The new member of the RDNA 2 architecture arrives specialized to perform at its best in an increasingly used resolution such as 1440p and brings some surprises.
It is official and comes with some exciting features and price and a new heatsink that we already sensed as we showed at the time, but above all, what is most surprising is precisely its performance. This new GPU assaults the throne of NVIDIA’s upper mid-range and subdues it, at least that’s what AMD claims.
Lisa Su’s team has been clear: this is the best graphics card for 1440p in the graphics market so far, with the highest amount of VRAM available and the direct successor of the discontinued RX 5700 XT.
We are talking about a graphics card that integrates the Navi 22 XT chip and includes 40 CUs, or in other words, 2560 Shaders, which run at a whopping 2321 MHz in a base clock, 2424 MHz in gaming mode, and 2581 MHz in Boost mode.
Not to mention its capabilities for Ray Tracing, as it has 40 Units to work the ray tracing in real-time. Its PCB will house ten common layers plus two OZ Copper, without counting with high-efficiency power supply phases (6+8 power pins), always talking about the reference model of the company itself. However, it seems more like a custom model for the quality of the components.
However, it integrates an aluminum midplate for the VRMs and GDDR6 since the number of VRAMs is 6 in 2 GB versions. The heatsink and thermal compound will reference a not very dense finned body that will be crossed by three 8 mm heat pipes, while in the die, it will integrate a high-performance graphite thermal pad and not thermal paste to use.
Performance above RTX 3070 8GB at a lower price point
At least from AMD, we can already say that NVIDIA will have to counterattack with a new series of graphics cards that match the competition in certain aspects, especially in VRAM.
In addition to the crazy VRAM, the RX 6700 XT houses 12 GB of GDDR6 at the alleged speed of 16 Gbps (unconfirmed, but plausible) coupled with a 192-bit bus, giving a total bandwidth of 384 GB/s. Seen dry, it may not seem much, but the magic comes from the Infinity Cache, integrating 96 MB to optimize and maximize the performance of that bandwidth.
Of course, we are dealing with a fully PCIe 4.0 compliant GPU, which, as expected, integrates DisplayPort 1.4 and HDMI 2.1. AMD has compared its new card with the RTX 3060 Ti and RTX 3070 at 1440p and maximum available settings in 8 different titles.
The sample results speak for themselves, but they don’t specify whether those FPS were achieved with SAM active or inactive, so we’ll have to wait for the reviews to clarify.
In any case, we get a card with a reference heatsink that looks more like a bespoke one, two 8cm axial fans, and a very well-designed PCB, all for a claimed MSRP of $479 and shipping on March 18.