AMD Radeon RX 6600 in the test

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With the Radeon RX 6600, AMD is sending the smaller brother of the Radeon RX 6600 XT into the race. The entry-level graphics card is technically based on the XT variant, but has been slimmed down in some areas. The target is the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060, which should be narrowly beaten by the new RDNA-2 Radeon.

With the Radeon RX 6600 XT, AMD has brought RDNA 2 into the entry-level segment. Now you take a further step, because the new Radeon RX 6600 is located below it, but should still be able to play AAA games smoothly in 1,920 × 1,080 and achieve the performance of the competing GeForce RTX 3060 from Nvidia.

Just like the RX 6600 XT, only a little slower

To achieve this, the small Navi-23 GPU is used again, which simply comes with a reduced number of execution units, while the technology itself remains identical. Both features and memory expansion with 8 GB have remained the same as the larger XT model. AMD uses 339 euros as the RRP, 41 euros less than the Radeon RX 6600 XT. From today the graphics card will be available in stores.

However, the critical delivery situation will certainly drive the graphics card into the parade. Even if the launch of the Radeon RX 6600 XT went relatively well for the current situation – after all, there were models for several hours to a few days to buy at acceptable prices close to the RRP – it now looks just as catastrophic as it does for all other graphics cards. It can be assumed that the Radeon RX 6600 will suffer a similar fate.

In the test: a custom design by XFX

The XFX Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210 came to the editorial office for the test. The graphics card is a simple implementation without a lot of gimmicks, which adheres to AMD’s reference specifications regarding clock rates and power consumption, but is equipped with its own cooling system.

Navi 23 is partially deactivated as a GPU

Like the Radeon RX 6600 XT, the Radeon RX 6600 is equipped with the 11.1 billion transistor heavy and 237 mm² Navi-23 GPU. Unlike the large model, which uses all available units on the chip, the Radeon RX 6600 has individual units switched off.

These are exclusively the compute units, of which the full 32 no longer work, but only 28, which results in 1,792 FP32 shader units. With the same clock rate, the computing power of the latest model is therefore 12.5 percent slower than that of the XT model.

Apart from the CUs, there are only a few differences

Apart from that, the Radeon RX 6600 is technically identical to the Radeon RX 6600 XT. There is still a 128-bit wide memory interface and thus also an 8 GB GDDR6 memory. The 32 MB Infinity Cache is still operated at 1.8 GHz. And the PCIe interface is still limited with eight PCIe 4.0 lanes compared to larger graphics cards.

Ultimately, however, AMD does not stop at only distinguishing the Radeon RX 6600 from the “XT” through the FP32-ALUs. The chip developer calls a game clock of 2,044 MHz and a turbo of up to 2,491 MHz for the latest model, which is 315 MHz and 98 MHz lower than the Radeon RX 6600 XT. But it should already be mentioned that official time stamps in RDNA 2 have nothing in common with reality – and this is also the case with the Radeon RX 6600.

Less memory clock and less energy on the RX 6600

A limitation that should not be underestimated is the available memory bandwidth. The 128-bit interface remains, but AMD only installs 14 Gbps memory instead of the 16 Gbps memory otherwise used in the Radeon RX 6000 series. This reduces the memory bandwidth by another 12.5 percent to 224 GB / s, so that the computing power-to-memory bandwidth ratio in both Radeon RX-6600 models is ultimately very similar.

The last difference is in the power consumption. AMD calls the Radeon RX 6600 a “typical board power” of 132 watts, the GPU may consume a maximum of 100 watts. That is 28 and 30 watts less than with the Radeon RX 6600 XT.

The Radeon RX 6000 models in comparison

The XFX Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210 in detail

With the Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210, XFX sends a simple implementation of AMD’s Radeon RX 6600 into the race, which optically fits in well with the rest of the portfolio of XFX’s Radeon RX 6000 offshoot. And even if the graphics card is made entirely of plastic, the model still doesn’t look cheap. You can’t ask for more with an entry-level graphics card.

The Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210 has a length of 24.5 cm, which is not little for an entry-level model, but ultimately completely unproblematic. The PCB with its seven voltage converter circuits is not what is responsible for the length, because the dual-slot cooler is simply a lot larger than the circuit board.

Entry-level model with two fans instead of three

This consists of a thin copper plate directly above the GPU and otherwise of a large aluminum cooler that takes up the entire length of the graphics card. There are also two heat pipes with a diameter of 6 mm for faster heat transport. Two axial fans with a diameter of 95 mm provide the necessary fresh air, while on the Windows desktop they stop for silent operation. The fans also use the short circuit board to blow air through the cooler to improve cooling.

With the Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210, XFX adheres completely to AMD’s reference specifications. Accordingly, the game clock of the graphics card is 2,044 MHz, the maximum boost is 2,491 MHz. The 8 GB GDDR6 memory is controlled at 7,000 MHz (14 Gbps). The GPU can consume a maximum of 100 watts, whereby the value can be increased manually by up to 20 percent. An 8-pin power plug is required for operation.

A second BIOS, but the same configuration

Three DisplayPort 1.4 DSC interfaces and an HDMI 2.1 connection are available on the graphics card. There is also a second BIOS, but this is identical to the primary BIOS. The XFX adaptation dispenses with RGB or any other type of lighting.

  • The XFX Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210

    The XFX Radeon RX 6600 Speedster Swft 210

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    On the next page: clock rates, benchmarks in Full HD & WQHD and ray tracing

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