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AMD Focuses On High End Graphics With Radeon RX 6000 Series

Big Navi is coming to town

After years of fighting rival NVIDIA in the mid-range market, AMD is finally re-entering the high-end GPU scene. And they’re doing it with their new line of Radeon RX 6000-series GPUs based on their new RDNA2 architecture.

Their new RX 6800XT is poised to do battle with NVIDIA’s own RTX 3080, promising better performance than the green team’s offering in many games in both 4K and 1440P gaming, at least according to AMD’s own performance metrics. While performance numbers given out by AMD (or NVIDIA, for that matter) should be taken with a large grain of salt, the company says that their card beats the RTX 3080’s 4K performance in a large swath of games, including Battlefield V, Borderlands 3, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, Forza Horizon 4, and more.

The RX 6800XT comes with 16GB of GDDR6 memory, a 2015Mhz base clock, 2250Mhz boost clock, 20.74 teraflops of GPU performance, and 72 compute units overall, and is priced at 649$, 50$ less than NVIDIA’s $700 RTX 3080. Not only does it cost less, it also draws less power VS its competitor (300 watts at full load VS the RTX 3080’s 320). The card will also come with hardware-accelerated ray tracing, something that NVIDIA had sole claim to in the previous generation, so it’s nice to see AMD catch up in that regard.

The claims are impressive but again, take note that these numbers are all coming from AMD. That being said, if AMD’s claims ARE true then NVIDIA’s in for a tough ride this holiday season, especially since finding an RTX 3080 has so far been an impossible task nowadays.

AMD is also releasing a cheaper Radeon RX 6800, which is priced at $579. It’s poised to do battle with NVIDIA’s RTX 2080 Ti (or RTX 3070, depending on how you look at it) and again, slides provided by AMD shows that it beats the older NVIDIA card in several key metrics including 1440p and 4K gaming. It comes equipped with 60 compute units, a 1815Mhz base clock, 2105Mhz boost clock, 16.17 teraflops of GPU performance, and 16GB of GDDR6 memory.

Like its bigger brother, RX 6800 also draws less power than NVIDIA’s offering at 250 watts (the RTX 2080 Ti draws around 260 watts).

Finally, AMD also unveiled the monster Radeon RX 6900 XT which is going up against NVIDIA’s RTX 3090. While NVIDIA has marketed the RTX 3090 as an “8K gaming” card, independent tests by people outfits like Gamer’s Nexus show that to be not the case, and is more useful as a Titan replacement card, made for tasks like rendering thanks to its large 24GB of RAM. It’s interesting that AMD’s Radeon RX 6900 XT doesn’t follow suit in terms of the amount of RAM here, as it only has 16GB of GDDR6 memory, which makes it more affordable at $999 VS the RTX 3090’s 1,499$ MSRP.

AMD’s new offerings are certainly putting the screws on NVIDIA, who traditionally don’t have strong competition in the high-end market for around two generations now. And with more and more gamers and potential buyers angry at the lack of stock for the RTX 3080, AMD has a great chance of swooping in and enticing potential buyers and customers from NVIDIA’s embrace. Hopefully, the red team will have plenty of stock for the three cards when they hit stores. Speaking of which, the RX 6800 XT and RX 6800 will go on sale on November 18th, with the Radeon RX 6900 XT hitting stores on December 8th.

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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