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Home Technology AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 Review

AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 Review

AMD has for a number of years now lagged behind Nvidia within the graphics efficiency race, significantly on the excessive finish the place ray tracing has turn out to be the brand new must-have function to point out off, and consumers all the time need the most recent and best. The corporate’s issues are compounded in India, the place unfavourable pricing and restricted distribution usually tip the scales in Nvidia’s favour even when efficiency is comparable. Similar to it did with its Ryzen desktop CPUs just a few years in the past, AMD has been engaged on turning its fortunes round with new Radeon GPUs constructed across the RDNA structure and its successors.

With the new Radeon RX 6000 series based mostly on the RDNA 2 architecture, AMD thinks it could possibly take Nvidia on even on the very prime finish. Three GPUs have been launched thus far: the flagship Radeon RX 6900 XT which hopes to tackle the GeForce RTX 3090; and the Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800, that are for players who need nice high quality at 4K however haven’t got infinitely stretchable budgets. That is essentially the most assured that AMD has been in a really very long time, and sure, there’s even ray tracing – or at the very least an early implementation of it.

Right this moment, we’re testing and reviewing the Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800. These GPUs had been launched in late 2020 however as anticipated, availability in India has been somewhat constrained. Does their efficiency justify going towards the grain and selecting them over competing Nvidia choices? Can AMD pull off a decisive victory in any case? Let’s discover out.

AMD has designed a steel wraparound shroud with three {custom} axial followers


AMD RDNA 2 structure

Whereas it may need lagged by way of PC market share, AMD’s graphics division has dominated the high-end gaming console house for years now. The present and former generations of Sony’s PlayStation and Microsoft’s Xbox consoles have all used some form of Radeon GPU, which does give AMD some benefits and perception into what capabilities players and sport builders might be utilizing over the following a number of years.

Final 12 months’s Radeon RX 5700 XT, based mostly on the RDNA 1 structure, was a big enchancment over its predecessors, delivering 50 p.c higher efficiency per Watt. AMD now says that RDNA 2 can obtain 54 p.c higher efficiency per Watt than even that. The RDNA2 chip on which these two GPUs are based mostly has over 26 billion transistors, although every GPU mannequin makes use of totally different quantities of those assets.

On the structure stage, the variety of Compute Items (CUs) has doubled, going from 40 to 80, and new ray accelerator blocks have been added for ray tracing. Though RDNA 2 makes use of the identical 7nm manufacturing course of as RDNA, optimisations to energy dealing with, the processing pipeline itself, and boosting clock speeds by as much as 30 p.c has resulted on this generation-on-generation efficiency uplift.

An enormous a part of that comes from what AMD is asking “Infinity Cache”. This high-density 128MB L3 cache is predicated on AMD’s Epyc server CPU designs. It is mentioned to be a lot sooner than accessing GDDR6 RAM and is built-in into the on-die Infinity Material interconnect for high-bandwidth, low-latency communication. The Infinity cache helps preserve information prepared for the GPU so it could possibly work at excessive frequencies with out getting bottlenecked, which is a bonus when coping with 4K-quality sport property.

One other new function, which AMD calls “Sensible Entry Reminiscence”, basically permits a pc’s CPU to immediately entry the whole contents of the GPU’s reminiscence. This has thus far been restricted to 256MB due to the character of the PCIe connectivity protocol, however PCIe 4.0 now permits for what’s known as a resizable base deal with register (BAR). Sensible Entry Reminiscence would require a Ryzen 5000 series desktop CPU and Radeon 6000 collection GPU, plus a 500-series motherboard, and naturally all the most recent BIOS and driver updates. That is mentioned to ship as much as 11 p.c higher efficiency in some video games, and builders may optimise higher for it sooner or later.

Together with ray tracing, the DirectX 12 Ultimate API introduces DirectStorage, which lets a GPU load sport property immediately from a high-speed SSD to GPU reminiscence, with out going by system RAM or requiring CPU assets. That is being utilized in next-gen consoles and may enhance loading time for ranges and transitions in video games.

The up to date HDMI 2.1 standard will enable for 4K 144Hz or 8K 60Hz video output, and AMD says it is prepared for Show Stream Compression (DSC), which ought to enable for even increased resolutions. In the event you stream your gameplay on-line, you would possibly profit from 8K AV1 decode and 8K HEVC encode in {hardware}.

The Radeon Software program utility now helps computerized in addition to absolutely handbook overclocking. As well as, Efficiency Tuning Presets will let customers apply optimised per-game profiles, which AMD says is not going to void a graphics card’s guarantee. Radeon Anti-Lag and Radeon Increase are each options that may probably make video games really feel extra responsive by optimising enter latency and dynamically decreasing decision in small patches.

amd radeon rx6800 xt thick ndtv radeon

The inventory Radeon RX 6800 occupies two slots whereas the Radeon RX 6800 XT will want two and a half.


AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 specs

4K is the goal decision for all video games at prime quality, even for the Radeon RX 6800 – lower-priced GPUs will presumably be launched later this 12 months for many who are concentrating on 1440p and 1080p, however the three fashions launched thus far all goal enthusiast-class players. The baseline for the Radeon RX 6800 is 4K 60fps in almost all current-day video games, and it is positioned as an enchancment over the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, which suggests it would tackle the GeForce RTX 3070. You also needs to see over 90fps at 1440p, in keeping with AMD.

The upper-priced Radeon RX 6800 XT is ready to compete with the GeForce RTX 3080, staying above 4K 60fps in as we speak’s AAA video games even on the highest high quality settings, or delivering 144-240fps at 1440p in lots of esports titles.

Nonetheless, enabling ray tracing will take a toll on these figures. Even AMD’s official projected efficiency numbers point out that 1080p and 1440p are extra practical expectations if you wish to keep at or above 60fps. Nvidia will get round this utilizing its machine-learning-powered upscaling algorithm DLSS (Deep Learning Supersampling), which lets its GPUs render decrease resolutions after which stretch them out with out shedding high quality. AMD has one thing comparable within the works, but it surely is not prepared but. The excellent news is that the GPU’s ray tracing {hardware} is not only for video games; it would assist velocity up work in content material creation purposes corresponding to Blender and Autodesk Maya.

The Radeon RX 6800 options 60 lively CUs with one ray accelerator and 64 stream processors every, for a complete of three,840 stream processors. It runs at burst speeds of as much as 2105MHz. Its larger sibling, the Radeon RX 6800 XT, has 72 CUs with an equal variety of ray accelerators and 4,608 stream processors, and runs at as much as 2250MHz. Each function 16GB of 256-bit GDDR6 RAM with a peak bandwidth of 512GBps. The 2 have rated TDPs of 250W and 300W, and AMD recommends 650W and 750W energy provides respectively.

amd radeon rx6800 xt ports ndtv radeon

You get one HDMI 2.1 port, two DisplayPort 1.4 outputs, and a USB Kind-C port on the inventory Radeon RX 6800 and Radeon RX 6800 XT


AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 reference design

AMD’s companion manufacturers, which embrace Asus, ASRock, Gigabyte, MSI, Sapphire, XFX, and Powercolor are free to design their very own graphics playing cards that includes Radeon GPUs, together with ones with AIO liquid coolers. Nonetheless, fairly just a few of the playing cards you may see out there will use AMD’s reference design. Sapphire specifically, which is among the extra simply obtainable manufacturers in India, might be promoting playing cards an identical to the reference items that we’re reviewing as we speak.

AMD would not promote its personal playing cards like Nvidia does with its Founders Version fashions, however a whole lot of work nonetheless goes into their design. The Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 reference playing cards are heavy and really feel solidly constructed. They each have vapour chamber coolers and a die-cast aluminium shroud with three custom-designed axial followers. The followers can spin down fully when the GPU is not being harassed.

All that is to optimise acoustic in addition to cooling effectivity, and you need to discover these playing cards quieter than the earlier era. Even so, this design can also be claimed to permit for some extent of overclocking to maintain fans blissful. AMD says it has used a graphite pad to interface between the GPU itself and the cooler, somewhat than thermal compound which may dry out over time. There are additionally thermal pads between the cooler, GDDR6 reminiscence, and energy circuitry for higher warmth conductivity.

AMD has used normal 8-pin PCIe energy connectors, versus Nvidia’s latest shrunken normal that requires an adapter. Each the Radeon RX 6800 XT and the Radeon RX 6800 have two 8-pin connectors dealing with upwards on the rear.

The Radeon RX 6800 XT reference design occupies 2.5 slots whereas the RX 6800 is considerably slimmer. Each are a typical 10.5 inches lengthy. AMD has used its signature purple color as an accent across the uncovered heatsink vents on the highest and there is a purple illuminated Radeon emblem on every card.

Each playing cards have one HDMI 2.1 port, two DisplayPort 1.4 ports, and oddly, a USB Kind-C port. AMD says this enables for single-wire connections to head-mounted shows since it could possibly provide a video sign plus as much as 27W of energy. If you have already got a triple-monitor setup, you would possibly want some adapters. The choice to go along with USB paves the best way for future screens that may be daisy-chained and have a USB hub or different built-in peripherals, but it surely’s an fascinating alternative seeing as how the VirtualLink normal is successfully lifeless, and even Nvidia eliminated this port from its Founders Version playing cards after just one generation.

amd radeon rx6800 xt testbench ndtv radeon

The Radeon RX 6800 and Radeon RX 6800 XT each carry out effectively in benchmarks and sport exams


AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 efficiency

All exams had been run utilizing an AMD Ryzen 2700 CPU, ASRock X470 Taichi Final motherboard, 2x8GB of G.Ability F4-3400C16D-16GSXW DDR4 RAM, a 1TB Samsung 860 Evo SSD, and a Corsair RM650 energy provide. The monitor was a 4K Asus PB287Q. Home windows 10 was up to date to the 2H20 launch and all drivers had been updated together with the Radeon Software program Adrenalin 2020.12.2 launch.

Artificial exams allow us to examine totally different GPUs immediately. 3DMark is the apparent place to begin. The present-gen Time Spy and Time Spy Excessive exams present efficiency scaling pretty predictably with value throughout the Nvidia and AMD camps. The GeForce RTX 30-series does pull forward within the Port Royal DirectX 12 take a look at, whereas the Radeon RX 6800 siblings have the benefit within the older Fireplace Strike exams. Unigine’s Superposition benchmark, operating at its 4K Optimised preset, additionally scales with value. If all graphics playing cards had been obtainable at their MRPs, there could be no dangerous decisions, solely feature- and budget-related selections.

  AMD Radeon RX 6800 AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT Asus TUF Gaming GeForce RTX 3070 Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080 Founders Version Zotac GeForce RTX 2080 Amp
3DMark DLSS Characteristic Check (off / on) N/A N/A 37.54fps / 88fps 50.33fps / 69.41fps NA
3DMark Port Royal 7,425 8,764 8,083 10,721 NA
3DMark Time Spy 12,469 13,723 11,857 13,996 9,505
3DMark Time Spy Excessive 6,068 6,798 5,912 7,191 NA
3DMark Fireplace Strike Excessive 17,980 20,205 15,415 17,787 12,215
3DMark Fireplace Strike Extremely 10,063 11,852 8,587 10,520 6,498
3DMark Wild Life 72,014 73,249 N/A N/A N/A
3DMark Ray Tracing Characteristic Check 21.28fps 26.31fps N/A N/A N/A
Unigine Superposition (4K Optimised) 11,468 13,135 11,060 13,708 NA

Coming to in-game benchmarks, Far Cry 5 at 4K utilizing its Extremely preset, and managed to hit averages of 80fps on the Radeon RX 6800 XT and 72fps on the RX 6800. Center Earth: Shadow of Warfare additionally ran easily at 4K with its Extremely high quality preset, averaging 73fps on the Radeon RX 6800 however leaping as much as 82fps on the Radeon RX 6800 XT. Metro: Exodus additionally ran at 4K with its Extremely preset (which isn’t the best on this case), with out ray tracing enabled, at 61fps and 52.35fps on the 2 playing cards respectively.

In handbook gameplay, Doom: Everlasting was extraordinarily clean at 4K at Extremely Nightmare high quality, reaching 150-160fps on the Radeon RX 6800 XT and 120-125fps on the Radeon RX 6800, as measured by the in-game body counter even in heavy battle scenes. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt averaged 84fps and 73fps respectively, at 4K Extremely.

I then turned to Battlefield V to verify how AMD’s ray tracing implementation impacts efficiency. With no DLSS equal, there isn’t any strategy to increase the body price to compensate for the extra stress that ray tracing places on the brand new Radeon GPUs. With the decision set to 4K and utilizing the Extremely high quality preset, the Radeon RX 6800 XT managed round 105fps in a busy scene with loads of gunfire and operating round. With ray tracing enabled, that fell steeply to round 60fps. The Radeon RX 64800 confirmed a sharper drop, from round 95fps to only 40fps. You’d need to decrease the decision and compromise on high quality in order for you ray tracing results, at the very least for now.

AMD’s new cooler design does appear to be efficient, and neither of the 2 playing cards examined was noisy even underneath heavy load.

amd radeon rx6800 xt power ndtv radeon

AMD has used normal 8-pin PCIe energy connectors, in contrast to Nvidia’s new shrunken design



AMD has clearly achieved very effectively with this era of Radeon GPUs. They’re undoubtedly highly effective sufficient for as we speak’s fans who demand clean visuals at 4K and at very prime quality settings. The reference design playing cards are slick and unobtrusive. Nonetheless, the matter of whether or not the brand new Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 are able to difficult Nvidia’s dominance comes down to 2 components – options and pricing.

When it comes to options, ray tracing in fact stands out. AMD’s implementation is not absolutely realised but. Loads of video games do help AMD’s method, and it is possible that future upscaling tech will make issues much more even between the 2 rivals. For now although, if you wish to get pleasure from all of the graphical bells and whistles, and declare bragging rights, Nvidia has the benefit. One small observe right here is that 16GB of GDDR6 RAM is way more than what Nvidia’s present choices at this value and efficiency stage have, and your use instances would possibly profit from that.

Lastly, we come to the thorny – and ongoing – challenge of Radeon costs in India. To be honest, all current-gen GPUs are scarce, and there was vital value gouging and scalping for the previous a number of months. It is troublesome to make comparisons since costs preserve altering and a few fashions merely aren’t obtainable. Nonetheless, Nvidia does sell its own Founders Edition graphics cards in India at their official MRPs, by a distributor. Though you must undergo a tedious waitlisting course of and so much depends upon luck, at the very least there are periodic updates. AMD has no such association.

AMD’s official costs in India for the Radeon RX 6800 and RX 6800 XT graphics playing cards are Rs. 45,999 and Rs. 64,990 respectively, not together with taxes. Within the US, they price $579 and $649 respectively. It is unusual is that the corporate is utilizing a a lot increased trade price for the RX 6800 XT, which makes this card disproportionately costlier than its sibling. On prime of that, road costs (together with tax) in India are everywhere, starting from a considerably comprehensible Rs. 59,999 for a reference Sapphire RX 6800 (listed at just one on-line retailer however out of inventory, with no assure it would really be up for buy that value) to an outrageous Rs. 1,10,000 for a Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 6800 XT with a {custom} cooler. In truth, some Radeon RX 6900 XT listings are literally inexpensive.

This could have been a detailed name between Nvidia and AMD, however the results of this supply-side confusion is that it is almost all the time going to make sense for players in India to decide on the equal GeForce 30-series card. The Radeon RX 6800 is likely to be value it if you’ll find it at a great value, however there’s little hope for the Radeon RX 6800 XT right here proper now ­– possibly we’ll see vital reductions someplace down the road, at which level calculations may be reconsidered. AMD does critically have to type this out, or it would lose regardless of no matter progress it has made by way of efficiency.

AMD Radeon RX 6800 (reference)
Rs. 45,999 + taxes


  • Glorious inventory cooler
  • Superb efficiency at 4K and 1440p 


  • No decision upscaling at launch 
  • Costly and arduous to search out

Scores (out of 5)

  • Efficiency: 4
  • Worth for Cash: 4
  • Total: 4

AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT (reference)
Rs. 64,990 + taxes


  • Glorious inventory cooler
  • Superb efficiency at 4K and 1440p 


  • No decision upscaling at launch 
  • Costly and arduous to search out

Scores (out of 5)

  • Efficiency: 4.5
  • Worth for Cash: 3.5
  • Total: 3.5

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