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AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT benchmarks revealed — and RTX 3080 should be worried

Radeon RX 6800 XT
(Image credit: AMD)

When AMD took the covers off the Radeon RX 6000 series, which includes Big Navi, the Radeon RX 6800 XT and RX 6000, we saw it bring some serious graphical firepower to shoot down Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3000-series.

But Team Red has since posted a suite of benchmarks on its site that really show how it’s set to be a major threat to Nvidia when it comes to 4K gaming. And that’s thanks to the performance of the Radeon RX 6800 XT vs the GeForce RTX 3080

Testing its new graphics cards in a system running an AMD Ryzen 9 5900X processor, 16GB of RAM, and a high-end motherboard, the Radeon 6800 XT with 16GB of GDDR6 video memory would often outmatch the GeForce RTX 3080 with its 10GB of faster GDDR6X VRAM. Running games at 4K and maxed out, the $649 RX 6800 XT beats the $699 RTX 3080 in games like Battlefield V, Borderlands 3, and Gears 5. It even beats the $1,499 GeForce RTX 3090

The Radeon card loses out to Team Green’s high-end gaming GPU in titles like Doom Eternal and the Resident Evil 3 remake, but the difference is marginal. That means the Radeon RX 6800 XT is offering a lot of bang for the buck. 

As for the $999 Radeon RX 6900 XT, it pretty much wipes the floor with all other graphics cards other than in a few games where the more expensive RTX 3090 pulls ahead. And in The Division 2, AMD most powerful consumer graphics card is beaten by the RTX 3080. 

Radeon RX 6800 XT benchmarks

(Image credit: AMD)

The less powerful $549 Radeon RX 6800 does a fine job too. While it can't outpace the more powerful GeForce RTX 3000-series cards, it still beats the $999 GeForce RTX 2080 Ti, the one-time leader of Nvidia’s graphics card pack.

It’s worth noting that AMD’s benchmarks had its Smart Access Memory feature enabled, which allows for better communication between GPU memory and the processor. This is something that’s unique to the latest Ryzen processors, so if the tests were carried out using an Intel CPU, they could tell a different story,

And no ray-tracing performance was shown off either. Nvidia’s graphics cards have dedicated ray-tracing hardware, so there’s a good chance that they could still be the superior GPUs when it comes to ray tracing.

However, these benchmarks paint a strong picture of how AMD’s new Radeon GPUs offer impressive value for the money and inject more competition into the graphics card arena. That should push Nvidia to offer more competitive graphics cards and in turn force AMD to retort, all of which means better graphics for PC gamers at more compelling prices.

  • cashcon57
    Your article mentions that "Nvidia’s graphics cards have dedicated ray-tracing hardware, so there’s a good chance that they could still be the superior GPUs when it comes to ray tracing."

    It's important to know that AMD's new cards also have dedicated ray-tracing hardware built-in. These are called Ray Accelerators. They are similar in function to Nvidia's RT Cores.
    Reply
  • qfg77
    Yeah, AMD 6000 cards do have ray tracing cores, but ray-tracing benchmarks that leaked a few weeks ago show them 25% behind NVidia. The absence of ray tracing numbers from AMD presentation is also likely not coincidental.

    But regardless, NVidia has huge advantage in software right now. DLSS and ray tracing are beginning to be integrated in every new title and it will be a while before AMD catches up. AMD has a good thing going for them that they are the sole console GPU provider, so eventually game developers will be making ray-tracing games compatible with AMD ray tracing, but it will take a while.
    Reply
  • cashcon57
    qfg77 said:
    Yeah, AMD 6000 cards do have ray tracing cores, but ray-tracing benchmarks that leaked a few weeks ago show them 25% behind NVidia. The absence of ray tracing numbers from AMD presentation is also likely not coincidental.

    But regardless, NVidia has huge advantage in software right now. DLSS and ray tracing are beginning to be integrated in every new title and it will be a while before AMD catches up. AMD has a good thing going for them that they are the sole console GPU provider, so eventually game developers will be making ray-tracing games compatible with AMD ray tracing, but it will take a while.
    Very true, but AMD's ray tracing solution interfaces directly with DirectX Ray Tracing, so titles that already have DXR built in should immediately support AMD's solution. Correct me if I'm wrong. Also, AMD's version of DLSS apparently works at the driver level rather than on a per-game basis. We'll see if that churns out similar results. At least that would mean, in theory, that most if not all games would immediately support AMD's version of DLSS. (Sorry I'm blanking on what they are calling it)
    Reply
  • qfg77
    Your right, AMD ray-tracing == DirectX Ray Tracing, which is great. Unfortunately, since NVidia was the only ray-tracing game in town for a while now, my understanding is that a lot of PC games in development (e.g., Cyberpunk 2077) are using NVidia's proprietary ray-tracing solution.

    No idea how DLSS-equivalent will work for AMD. Software and drivers have been an issue for AMD in the past and they lost a lot of goodwill with game developers. It would be great for NVidia to have some real competition again, I think their 3000 series cards are definitely more beefier thanks to AMD 6000.
    Reply
  • cashcon57
    qfg77 said:
    Your right, AMD ray-tracing == DirectX Ray Tracing, which is great. Unfortunately, since NVidia was the only ray-tracing game in town for a while now, my understanding is that a lot of PC games in development (e.g., Cyberpunk 2077) are using NVidia's proprietary ray-tracing solution.

    No idea how DLSS-equivalent will work for AMD. Software and drivers have been an issue for AMD in the past and they lost a lot of goodwill with game developers. It would be great for NVidia to have some real competition again, I think their 3000 series cards are definitely more beefier thanks to AMD 6000.
    Good to know. I wasn't aware there was a difference.

    I agree the competition is making both companies better, and in turn, making our gaming hardware better!
    Reply
  • HateSony
    cashcon57 said:
    Good to know. I wasn't aware there was a difference.

    I agree the competition is making both companies better, and in turn, making our gaming hardware better!

    He's mostly wrong. Most games use Microsoft's DXR Raytracing standard, including Cyberpunk 2077. The developers have stated AMD support for raytracing won't be until next year but it has nothing to do with NVIDIA and proprietary tech. The only proprietary raytracing tech has been with the Vulkan API on Quake II RTX. This is because Khronos group haven't finalized their raytracing solution so NVIDIA did the work for that game to support raytracing.
    Reply
  • cashcon57
    HateSony said:
    He's mostly wrong. Most games use Microsoft's DXR Raytracing standard, including Cyberpunk 2077. The developers have stated AMD support for raytracing won't be until next year but it has nothing to do with NVIDIA and proprietary tech. The only proprietary raytracing tech has been with the Vulkan API on Quake II RTX. This is because Khronos group haven't finalized their raytracing solution so NVIDIA did the work for that game to support raytracing.
    This is what I thought the situation was. Thanks for confirming.
    Reply
  • qfg77
    Ah, I was indeed wrong, that's great news. Why are developers, including CD Projekt Red, not supporting ray tracing on day one then?
    Reply
  • HateSony
    I'd guess because the cards launch mere days before the release of the game and they'd have zero time to do quality assurance on that setup. They already pushed the game back 3 weeks to make sure the 9 versions are working and people lost their minds.
    Reply
  • GT Fox
    It's always amusing to see what caveats they choose to try to sell AMD cards.
    Sometimes they have to turn off certain features in the Nvidia cards in order to make their comparisons, other times they have to use them exclusively with AMD processors, still other times they have to cherry pick certain games this time it seems like they had to do all three and still use the caveat good if you want decent Graphics but still want to save money amd might be a good choice provided you don't want the best money can buy. It's also cute as heck when they compare this year's AMD cards to last year's Nvidia cards I wonder how last year's AMD cards would compare to this year's Nvidia cards. Fortunately Nvidia never has to compete with last year's cards so they never do that comparison. It's too bad that AMD never really leads in anything they missed the boat on Ray tracing an entire generation and they're always playing catch-up. If they could become a leader they could command the highest prices instead of always having to try to beat the competition on pricing. That would make their stock do much better also.
    They need to focus on beating the stats of nvidia's Next Generation not the current one.
    Reply