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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, notably on the excessive finish the place ray tracing has turn into the brand new must-have function to point out off, and consumers all the time need the most recent and biggest. 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. Identical 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 will possibly take Nvidia on even on the very prime finish. Three GPUs have been launched up to now: 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 probably the most assured that AMD has been in a really very long time, and sure, there’s even ray tracing – or no less than 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 fairly constrained. Does their efficiency justify going in opposition to the grain and selecting them over competing Nvidia choices? Can AMD pull off a decisive victory in any case? Let’s discover out.

amd radeon rx6800 xt shroud ndtv radeon

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


AMD RDNA 2 structure

Whereas it may need lagged when it comes to PC market share, AMD’s graphics division has dominated the high-end gaming console area 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 will likely 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 major enchancment over its predecessors, delivering 50 % higher efficiency per Watt. AMD now says that RDNA 2 can obtain 54 % 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 completely different quantities of those sources.

On the structure stage, the variety of Compute Models (CUs) has doubled, going from 40 to 80, and new ray accelerator blocks have been added for ray tracing. Despite the fact that 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 % has resulted on this generation-on-generation efficiency uplift.

A giant a part of that comes from what AMD is asking “Infinity Cache”. This high-density 128MB L3 cache relies on AMD’s Epyc server CPU designs. It is stated to be a lot quicker 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 hold knowledge prepared for the GPU so it will 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 “Good Entry Reminiscence”, basically permits a pc’s CPU to immediately entry all the contents of the GPU’s reminiscence. This has up to now 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 handle register (BAR). Good 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 stated to ship as much as 11 % higher efficiency in some video games, and builders might 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 via system RAM or requiring CPU sources. 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. Should 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 automated 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 Enhance 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 individuals who are focusing on 1440p and 1080p, however the three fashions launched up to now all goal enthusiast-class players. The baseline for the Radeon RX 6800 is 4K 60fps in practically all current-day video games, and it is positioned as an enchancment over the GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, which implies it can tackle the GeForce RTX 3070. You must also see over 90fps at 1440p, in line with AMD.

The upper-priced Radeon RX 6800 XT is ready to compete with the GeForce RTX 3080


, staying above 4K 60fps in right now’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 sensible 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 dropping high quality. AMD has one thing related within the works, however it is not prepared but. The excellent news is that the GPU’s ray tracing {hardware} is not only for video games; it can assist pace up work in content material creation functions similar 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 Sort-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 accomplice manufacturers, which embody 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 will see out there will use AMD’s reference design. Sapphire particularly, which is without doubt one of the extra simply obtainable manufacturers in India, will likely be promoting playing cards equivalent to the reference models that we’re reviewing right now.

AMD does not promote its personal playing cards like Nvidia does with its Founders Version fashions, however loads 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 burdened.

All that is to optimise acoustic in addition to cooling effectivity, and you need to discover these playing cards quieter than the earlier technology. Even so, this design can be claimed to permit for a point of overclocking to maintain fanatics pleased. AMD says it has used a graphite pad to interface between the GPU itself and the cooler, fairly 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 customary 8-pin PCIe energy connectors, versus Nvidia’s current shrunken customary 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 an ordinary 10.5 inches lengthy. AMD has used its signature pink color as an accent across the uncovered heatsink vents on the highest and there is a pink illuminated Radeon emblem on every card.

Each playing cards have one HDMI 2.1 port, two DisplayPort 1.4 ports, and oddly, a USB Sort-C port. AMD says this permits for single-wire connections to head-mounted shows since it will 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 together with USB paves the best way for future screens that may be daisy-chained and have a USB hub or different built-in peripherals, however it’s an attention-grabbing selection seeing as how the VirtualLink customary 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 checks


AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT and Radeon RX 6800 efficiency

All checks 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 checks allow us to evaluate completely different GPUs immediately. 3DMark is the plain place to start out. The present-gen Time Spy and Time Spy Excessive checks present efficiency scaling pretty predictably with worth 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 checks. Unigine’s Superposition benchmark, working at its 4K Optimised preset, additionally scales with worth. If all graphics playing cards had been obtainable at their MRPs, there could be no unhealthy 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 Function Take a look at (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 Function Take a look at 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 Battle 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 very 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 test how AMD’s ray tracing implementation impacts efficiency. With no DLSS equal, there is not any approach to elevate the body fee 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 working 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 should decrease the decision and compromise on high quality if you would like ray tracing results, no less than for now.

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

amd radeon rx6800 xt power ndtv radeon

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



AMD has clearly accomplished very effectively with this technology of Radeon GPUs. They’re undoubtedly highly effective sufficient for right now’s fanatics 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.

By way of options, ray tracing after all stands out. AMD’s implementation is not absolutely realised but. Loads of video games do help AMD’s strategy, and it is seemingly that future upscaling tech will make issues much more even between the 2 rivals. For now although, if you wish to take pleasure in 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 rather more than what Nvidia’s present choices at this worth and efficiency stage have, and your use circumstances would possibly profit from that.

Lastly, we come to the thorny – and ongoing – problem of Radeon costs in India. To be truthful, all current-gen GPUs are scarce, and there was important worth gouging and scalping for the previous a number of months. It is troublesome to make comparisons since costs hold 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, via a distributor. Though it’s a must to undergo a tedious waitlisting course of and loads will depend on luck, no less than 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 value $579 and $649 respectively. It is unusual is that the corporate is utilizing a a lot increased change fee for the RX 6800 XT, which makes this card disproportionately dearer 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 can truly be up for buy that worth) 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 practically 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 yow will discover it at an excellent worth, however there’s little hope for the Radeon RX 6800 XT right here proper now ­– perhaps we’ll see important reductions someplace down the road, at which level calculations may be reconsidered. AMD does significantly must kind this out, or it can lose regardless of no matter progress it has made when it comes to efficiency.

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


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


  • No decision upscaling at launch 
  • Costly and exhausting to seek out

Rankings (out of 5)

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

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


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


  • No decision upscaling at launch 
  • Costly and exhausting to seek out

Rankings (out of 5)

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

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