The Radeon RX 5700 and Radeon RX 5700 XT graphics cards represent a fresh start and a bright future for AMD, brimming with technologies that have never been seen in GPUs before.
The Radeon RX 5700 series are the first mainstream GPUs built using the bleeding-edge 7nm manufacturing process (hence their July 7 launch). They’re the first graphics cards packing the ultra-fast PCIe 4.0 interface. They’re the first graphics cards crafted with AMD’s all-new “RDNA” architecture, which delivers a massive power efficiency boost that Radeon’s been needing for years. They’re packing fresh display technologies to enable 4K, 144Hz monitors without the need for messy chroma subsampling. They’ve upgraded to GDDR6 memory. Heck, AMD even managed to tame their blower-style cooler design, learning from the mistakes of the frankly unpleasant-to-be-around Vega 64.
Nvidia tried to spoil their launch with the surprise release of the excellent GeForce RTX 2060 Super and RTX 2070 Super, but some aggressive pre-launch price cuts by AMD foiled that plan. The $350 Radeon RX 5700 and $400 Radeon RX 5700 XT are great graphics cards, full stop.
Radeon RX 5700 and 5700 XT: Specs and features
Warning: With so much new technology baked into the Radeon RX 5700 series, this is going to be a long review. We’re going to kick it off by talking about what’s fresh under the hood. Feel free to use the table of contents at left to hop between sections if you’d like. Got it? Good. On to the cool stuff.
Let’s kick things off by examining the hardware, before delving into some new software features later. Here’s an AMD-supplied list of technological specifications for the Radeon RX 5700 and Radeon RX 5700 XT, alongside the same stats for the Radeon RX Vega GPUs they’re replacing in AMD’s product stack. (Radeon boss Scott Herkelman confirmed that Vega will be disappearing in The Full Nerd interview embedded above.)
While that table provides a helpful overview,…