AMD Radeon RX 6900 XT just smashed an Nvidia speed record

AMD Radeon RX 6900 XT
(Image credit: AMD)

Trying to find AMD Radeon RX 6900 XT stock has proven incredibly difficult, but if you do ever get your hands on AMD's flagship graphics card, you can at least be comfortable in knowing it’s just set a new GPU speed record.

TechRadar reported that German overclocker Der8auer managed to push a PowerColor Radeon RX 6900 XT Red Devil to the fastest clock speed ever reached by a GPU, smashing an Nvidia-held record along the way.

The Radeon RX 6000 series, AMD’s answer to the brilliant but stock-starved Nvidia GeForce RTX 30-series, originally launched with a clock speed limit of 3GHz. However, AMD has since release higher-binned ­ — higher-quality, in other words — GPUs that can reach 4GHz. Although such a frequency is unlikely to be reached anytime soon, this did allow Der8auer to overclock his RX 6900 XT to 3.2GHz, about 200MHz higher than the previous record set by the overclocker Kingpin on an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 Ti.

That’s not to say you can expect to get world-beating speeds on a stock RX 6900 XT home; Der8auer relied on the cooling power of liquid nitrogen to get his card up to 3.2GHz, as even a liquid cooling system could only sustain 2.85GHz. Still, both are significantly faster than the PowerColor card’s official OC boost speed of 2.25GHz, so it bodes well for the GPU’s headroom if you want to try overclocking it in your own system.

Der8auer even claimed that the RX 6900 XT could potentially hit 3.5GHz with increased voltages. Again, though, don’t try this at home: small voltage tweaks are fine on stock cooling but messing around with values too much can damage components.

Of course, many PC owners would be thankful just to have a current-gen graphics card in the first place. The ongoing GPU stock disaster looks set to continue for months, mainly due to chip manufacturers struggling to meet demand.

James Archer

James is currently Hardware Editor at Rock Paper Shotgun, but before that was Audio Editor at Tom’s Guide, where he covered headphones, speakers, soundbars and anything else that intentionally makes noise. A PC enthusiast, he also wrote computing and gaming news for TG, usually relating to how hard it is to find graphics card stock.