AMD’s RX 6600 XT launched — huge upgrade for budget gamers

AMD has announced a budget addition to its RX 6000-series GPU lineup with the RX 6600 XT.

The new graphics card is aimed at high-performance 1080p gaming and should also provide solid performance at 1440p resolution.

The card first surfaced on the rumour mill in early June after being prematurely listed on the online store of manufacturer Powercolor.

AMD has now officially announced the new addition to its RDNA2 range, and its specs and benchmarks bode extremely well for 1080p gamers.

AMD touts the card as a direct competitor to Nvidia’s RTX 3060 desktop card, and according to the company’s own benchmarks, it outperforms Nvidia’s card without exception in 1080p gaming.

Of course, you should always take in-house benchmarking with a pinch — or a tablespoon — of salt, but the benchmarks look extremely promising for a budget gaming card nonetheless.

And one would hope so, considering that the RX 6600 XT comes with a recommended retail price of $379 (R5,500), compared to the $329 (R4,800) of the RTX 3060.

Prices in South Africa will likely be vastly different to those advertised by either company, especially in light of the ongoing semiconductor and GPU shortage. An RTX 3060, for example, will cost you no less than R10,000 from any local retailer at the moment.

Still, the RX 6600 XT boasts decent specs for a budget card, though, as the table below outlines, it is somewhat inferior to the RTX 3060.

Specifications — RX 6600XT vs RTX 3060
Spec RX 6600 XT RTX 3060
Interface PCIe 4.0 PCIe 4.0
Compute Units 32 28
Stream processors 2,048 3,584 CUDA cores
Ray accelerators 32 28
Boost clock 2,589MHz 1,777MHz
Memory 8GB GDDR6 6GB or 12GB GDDR6
Memory speed 16Gbps 15Gbps
Bandwidth Up to 256 GB/s UP to 360 GB/s
Memory Bus 128-bit 192-bit
TDP 160W 170W

One notable difference between the cards is the emphasis on 1440p resolutions for the RTX 3060 compared to the 1080p emphasis of the RX 6600 XT.

However, AMD did mention the 1440p capabilities of the new card, with specific reference to the positive impact of Fidelity Super Resolution (FSR) — a direct competitor to Nvidia’s DLSS.

According to AMD’s own benchmark, the RX 6600 XT can run even some AAA titles at over 100 FPS on Ultra-settings with FSR enabled.

rx-6600-xt-fsr-1440p

All of this seems promising for budget gamers, though availability and pricing may remain a problem for the GPU market for the foreseeable future.

Nonetheless, AMD plans to release its new card on 11 August with ten reference cards already announced from partner manufacturers.

South African release dates have not yet been announced. Once shipping, VAT, import duties, and foreign exchange costs are factored in, we can expect local pricing to be substantially higher than the manufacturer suggested prices.

rx-6600-board-partner-cards

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AMD’s RX 6600 XT launched — huge upgrade for budget gamers