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AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT Review Philippines: Rough Sailing

Review Verdict: The mid-range AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT GPU faces tough competition from NVIDIA thanks to its slightly weaker RT performance and the green team’s expanded mid-range lineup. There’s still plenty to like about it though, and it should prove to be a good alternative card once GPU pricing calms down in the Philippines.

Pros

  • Lots of GDDR6 VRAM
  • Good 1080p/1440p performance

Cons

  • Still left behind by NVIDIA in terms of RT
  • Price is a bit steep
  • You won’t find one even remotely close to MSRP as of press time

Reviewing a new video card during a time when their pricing is literally at ridiculous levels is a challenge, to say the least. GPUs nowadays are judged not only by their performance but also by the value they give you, something that’s impossible to gauge in the current market that’s has sellers hawking GPUs made in 2016 at Php 20K.

That being said, our sad state of affairs won’t last forever, and once the market stabilizes you’ll probably be looking at GPUs to upgrade your mid-range rig with. AMD’s Radeon 6700 XT is aimed at mid-range systems, and hopefully will soon start shipping with its $479.9 (Php 23.2K at current exchange rates) pricing.

Design

Since the card that AMD sent us is essentially a reference model of the Radeon RX 6700 XT, it follows the same design language as the company’s earlier GPU offerings that we reviewed a few months ago, just a fair bit smaller.

The card is 270mm in length and around 110mm tall, and weighs in at 880 grams, give or take a few grams. It’s a much smaller card now, sporting just two fans VS three on its larger brother, though the heatsink and fan design are still the same.

The card only takes two slots in your rig, and thanks to its smaller size people with smaller towers shouldn’t have any clearance issues with it.

Connectivity options include one HDMI 2.1 port and three DisplayPort 1.4 ports. Power is delivered through one 8-pin and one 6-pin power input. AMD’s reference card requires around 220W of power to operate.

The backplate of the card is metal and accounts for most of the weight of the card.

Architecture

Interestingly the RX 6700 XT uses AMD’s smaller Navi 22 GPU, a change from Big Navi, or Navi 21 that their top-end GPUs use. Navi 22 doesn’t add, remove any features that are present on AMD’s top-end offering, and instead is manufactured differently to be more space-efficient, which in turn, is expected to give AMD (and TSMC, the people who make the physical dies) more dies to work with, and hopefully, more cards to sell to the public.

As for the chip itself, the RX 6700 XT has 40 RDNA2 compute units, which comes out at 2560 shader units and 60 ROPs. You also get globs of RAM here – in this case, 12GB of GDDR6, though the memory bus is only 192-bit wide, which is a reduction of 25% compared to AMD’s last-generation mid-range offering, the RX 5700 XT.

Core clocks are 2424Mhz with the card boosting to 2581MHz. Memory clocks are at 2000MHz.

In comparison, the RX 6800 XT has 4608 shader units and 128 ROPs higher than the RX 6700 XT, though it has lower clocks, with the top-end card having a 2015MHz core clock and 2250MHz boost clock.

We’ve already gone and explained the benefits of AMD’s new RDNA2 architecture with our RX 6800 XT review previously, and the RX 6700 XT has many of the same features and capabilities including ray tracing. How effective that is compared to the competition? We’ll have to see.

Performance, benchmarks, and thermals

As for our test setup, we’re using the exact same testbench as we did when we reviewed AMD’s RX 6800 XT a few months ago. Namely AMD’s own Ryzen 9 5950X processor, along with 16GB of T-Force XTREEM ARGB 3200MHz memory, and a Cooler Master ML240L AIO. Ambient temperatures are 25 degrees Celcius in a climate-controlled room.

The RX 6700 XT is meant to trade blows with NVIDIA’s RTX 3070 and that’s exactly what it did in our benchmark tests.

The AMD RX 6700 XT was never too far off from the performance of the RTX 3070, with the card performing well in both 1080p and in 1440p. Specifically, you’re looking at 60FPS or more for AAA titles in 1440p with the settings maxed out, which makes the card incredibly tantalizing for anyone that invested in 1440p displays in the past few years.

But like its bigger, more expensive brother, the RX 6700 XT faces issues when it comes to ray tracing performance. You’re going to be taking a huge performance hit with ray tracing on, which you should understand going in. Also, take note that AMD still doesn’t have a direct equivalent to NVIDIA’s DLSS technology that would help alleviate its ray tracing challenges.

As for thermals, we saw peaks of 78 degrees Celcius when playing games, though it stabilizes at around 76 degrees for us. Take note this is in a climate-controlled room maintained at 25 degrees Celcius.

Fan noise isn’t too bad with the reference model, with the fans only spinning up at 50 degrees Celcius. The stock fan curve isn’t that great though, and if you do somehow pick up this model you’d want to tweak it a little bit depending on the ambient of where you game at.

Wrap-up and conclusions

AMD’s mid-range RX 6700 XT looks to be a great challenger to NVIDIA’s mid-range cards at least on paper, capable of going toe-to-toe with the RTX 3070 in several titles.

Unfortunately, it’s still saddled with RDNA2’s issues that plagued AMD’s higher-end offerings, specifically its lackluster ray tracing performance.

Today’s current GPU crisis also adds an annoying layer to our AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT review for the Philippines, since you’ll never find RX 6700 XT cards being sold at AMD’s current MSRP of $479.9. You’re looking at pricing twice that right now in the Philippines, with many partner models easily breaching the Php 50,000 mark.

If you’re looking for an RTX 3070 equivalent in the Philippines with the crazy GPU prices right now, you should definitely pick up an RX 6700 XT if one is available to you at a cheaper price than an RTX 3070.

AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT Review Philippines Price:

Like we mentioned earlier, AMD pegs the price for the reference RX 6700 XT at  $479, but you’ll never find it at the price. Because of the GPU shortage it’s retailing for nearly double its price in the Philippines as of press time, with prices fluctuating up and down depending on supply.

 

 

 

John Nieves

John is a veteran technology and gadget journalist with more than 10 years of experience both in print and online. When not writing about technology, he frequently gets lost in the boonies playing soldier.

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