AMD’s RX 6700XT GPU launches March 18 for $479

Enlarge / The RX 6700XT GPU reaches retailers quickly. When will it attain common prospects, nevertheless? Actually, who’s to say at this level?

AMD’s RDNA 2 push continues on March 18 with a newly introduced RX 6700XT graphics card, beginning at $479 and that includes simply concerning the precise downscaled choices you may count on from a card costing $100 lower than last year’s RX 6800.

Earlier than we speak specs, after all…

AMD selected YouTube for the announcement—and, maybe foolishly, left the chat perform on. This allowed followers to spam the livestream chat with “sold out” and “out of stock” cries for a full quarter-hour. Weirdly, the video’s host acknowledged that “demand for GPUs is at an all-time excessive,” solely to supply about as nugatory a pledge as you may get about availability: that the GPU might be offered each at and at “e-tailers and retailers throughout the globe on day one.”

Therefore, we do not know how many RX 6700XT GPUs might be made out there this month, nor whether or not AMD or any retailers have plans in place to take care of scalpers and shopping for bots. (The identical goes for Nvidia, after all, with GPUs like its new RTX 3060, starting at $329, immediately promoting out final week.)

Rather less “Infinity”

The above gallery begins with an all-important AMD spec desk, and it sees the 6700XT cutting down from the 6800 in just a few important classes. Compute items are down 44.5 p.c, whereas texture items are down 33 p.c; L3 cache (which AMD calls “Infinity Cache”) has dropped from 128MB to 96MB; and VRAM has dropped 25 p.c to an affordable 12GB GDDR6. AMD has additionally seen match to crank the GPU’s core clocks a bit, itemizing an “as much as” variety of 2424 MHz, which exceeds each the 6800 and 6800XT.

Final 12 months’s new RDNA 2 playing cards didn’t necessarily live up to AMD’s claims that that they had launched a killer 4K line, and so they’re not bothering with such a gross sales pitch with the downscaled 6700XT. AMD talked up the truth that most PC gamers go for 1080p and 1440p resolutions (with out crediting companies like Steam for capturing these metrics), then assured followers that the 6700XT was designed for optimum 1440p gaming at excessive refresh charges.

However the announcement did not in any other case have good counters to the feathers in Nvidia’s cap—specifically, the competitors’s devoted cores for ray tracing and deep-learning super-sampling (DLSS). AMD’s potential reply to the latter, FidelityFX Tremendous Decision, was faintly teased within the Wednesday presentation, however we’re nonetheless ready to listen to precisely the way it works, when it is going to launch, and what number of video games and software program suites it is going to assist. Till AMD implements its personal intelligent upscaling system, it is merely in no place to compete on the ray-tracing aspect of issues, as our tests last year demonstrated.

In higher information, AMD’s gross sales pitch about unifying your whole rig behind its model to entry the corporate’s proprietary “Smart Access Memory” function has been up to date to assist the older Ryzen 3000 collection of CPUs, along with the present function on Ryzen 5000 merchandise. The thought right here is to let the CPU and GPU speak to one another extra effectively and thus fork over full GPU reminiscence pool entry as wanted, and with AMD’s clear CPU features lately, you are doubtless ready to take benefit. Nevertheless, motherboard compatibility stays locked to 500-series boards, and the Ryzen 5 3400G and Ryzen 3 3200G are not appropriate with the function.

It is price noting that one in every of AMD’s charts compares the 6700XT to Nvidia’s RTX 2080 Tremendous—a card whose efficiency has been summarily trounced by newer Nvidia releases. That is up for us to shake out in future unbiased testing, so we’ll do our greatest to pit the 6700XT in opposition to equally priced GPUs in an upcoming article. And sure, “equally priced” in 2021 may require a cautious scanning of public sale and reseller listings, which we’re poised to do at this level.

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