For a while now AMD has been teasing a new entry into the mainstream graphics card market, and for a while we have been going back and forth on what it will actually cost. But now AMD has officially revealed the new RX 6600 XT GPU, launching on August 11th with an MSRP of $379.
Obviously that’s a bit higher than previous rumors, but is still not quite as expensive as the first ones. At a higher cost than expected this will ultimately come down to performance, and whether it is worth the price or not.
But first of all let’s take a look at the official specs of the RX 6600 XT. AMD is claiming it to be a “1080p beast” so the specs should match other graphics cards targeting 1080p resolution. Here’s a breakdown of the full specs of the RX 6000 series including the new RX 6600 XT:
RX 6600 XT specs
Card Game Clock (MHz) Boost Clock (MHz) Compute Units Stream Processors Infinity Cache Memory TBP Price (MSRP) RX 6900 XT 2015 2250 80 5120 128MB 16GB GDDR6 300W $999 RX 6800 XT 72 4608 $649 RX 6800 1815 2105 60 3840 250W $579 RX 6700 XT 2424 2581 40 2560 96MB 12GB GDDR6 230W $479 RX 6600 XT 2359 2589 32 2048 32MB 8GB GDDR6 160W $379
As you can see, the RX 6600 XT features 32 Compute Units (2048 Stream Processors) with 8GB of GDDR6 memory and 32MB of Infinity Cache. The Game Clock speed comes in at 2359MHz whilst the Boost Clock is set to 2589MHz. Total Board Power is rated at 160W.
RX 6600 XT performance
AMD wants to create a new standard for 1080p gaming, and so their methodology here was apparently to look at the GTX 1060, the most popular graphics card according to the Steam Hardware and Software survey. There they found performance of the 1060 was struggling to reach 60fps on modern games.
AMD is certainly right there as the once-reigning king of mainstream GPUs that used to be enough for the recommended system requirements, has now been downgraded to the minimum required GPU in most modern games. So a new standard is definitely welcome.
With that, the RX 6600 XT apparently achieves up to 2.5X performance compared to the GTX 1060 in most modern games including Cyberpunk 2077, Red Dead Redemption 2, Assassins Creed: Valhalla, and more.
Of course, it's all good to compare the difference between 2 graphics cards that are 3 generations apart, but what about compared to modern GPUs? In terms of raw performance then, AMD compared the RX 6600 XT to its main competitor: the RTX 3060, and found performance mostly far exceeded that of its competitor.
As you can see, the RX 6600 XT achieves high frame rates well above the RTX 3060’s performance in the latest games. However, there is an important caveat here: both GPUs were tested using the Smart Access Memory (AMD) and ReSizable Bar (Nvidia) features, of which the former is apparently more optimized, according to AMD.
So the FPS performance graph above is fine to get a rough estimate of the RX 6600 XT’s performance compared to the RTX 3060, but we still need real-world 3rd-party benchmarks in order to make a better comparison.
As for a generational uplift, the RX 6600 XT performs up to 1.7X better than the RX 5600 XT, with the average being 1.4X across most games. It also outperforms the RX 5700 by quite a degree, which puts more merit on those leaked benchmarks that said it could perform as well as an RX 5700 XT, give or take 5%.
There is of course the question of ray tracing performance, which no doubt AMD left out from here as their first generation of ray accelerators has largely fallen behind Nvidia’s second generation of RT cores in most modern games that support ray tracing.
With the launch of AMD FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) that could change for the better though, but we have still yet to see how AMD’s new GPU fares against Nvidia’s in terms of ray tracing. Though we'll likely hear more in the lead up to the card's official launch on August 11th.
Overall, it’s a difficult one to judge since we don’t have any independent tests done yet to make a proper decision. On paper, the RX 6600 XT looks like a good contender for a new 1080p gaming standard, but the price is hard to swallow on that front. Both the RX 6600 XT and RTX 3060 trade blows in certain scenarios.
However, more graphics cards at more affordable prices (at least in comparison to the over-inflated prices in the market right now) is still a good thing. Plus, with a smaller GPU die and AMD ramping up production each quarter, we should see many more of these GPUs on shelves which will hopefully help bring down overall prices eventually, even if we have to wait until 2022 for it to do so.
What do you think? Are you excited for the RX 6600 XT? What do you think of the performance? What could ray tracing performance be like? And how do you feel about the price? Is it too high for its performance? Or is it actually just about right? Let us know!