Intro

 The PowerColor Red Devil RX 6600 XT takes on the RTX 3060 & RTX 3060 Ti in 32 Games

The Red Devil RX 6600 XT arrived at BTR for evaluation from PowerColor as a premium and overclocked 8GB vRAM-equipped 128-bit card with no manufacturer recommended (SEP/MSRP) pricing as yet although the base models start at a rather high $379 considering it is targeting 1080P.  We have been exhaustively comparing it versus the $329 RTX 3060 EVGA Black 12GB and versus the $399 RTX 3060 Ti 8GB Founders Edition using 32 games, GPGPU, workstation, SPEC, and synthetic benchmarks.

We will also compare the performance of these competing cards with the RX 6600 XT’s bigger brother, the Red Devil RX 6700 XT (the reference card SEP is $479), and also with its predecessor the ASUS TUF Gaming X3 RX 5600 XT (at $309 which is $30 above AMD’s entry-level pricing of $279); and also with the RX 5700 XT Anniversary Edition ($499/$449 reference at launch).

The Red Devil RX 6600 XT is factory clocked higher than the reference specifications using its OC BIOS.  While the reference Radeon RX 6600 XT offers a Game clock up to 2359MHz and a Boost clock of 2589MHz, the PowerColor Red Devil game clocks up to 2428MHz and boosts to 2607MHz.  It also looks different from older generation classic Red Devils, arriving in a more neutral gray color instead of in all red and black.  The Red Devil RX 6600 XT features a RGB mode whose LEDs default to a bright red which may be customized by PowerColor’s DevilZone software.

The Reference and Red Devil RX 6600 XT Features & Specifications

Source: PowerColor

First let’s look at the Red Devil RX 6600 XT specifications:

Additional Information from PowerColor

PowerColor newest 6600 XT Red Devil card, is positioned to compete directly with the custom 3060 premium models.

  • The card has 2 modes, OC and Silent. 145W / 135W Power target. There’s a bios switch on the side of the card. We designed this card to be very quiet, even on performance mode is considerably quieter most silent cards, but we also advise to try the silent mode as it’s truly whisper quiet, with a normal case with a optimal airflow, you most likely see the card run around 1000 Rpms under this mode.
  • The board has 10 Phase VS the 6+2 Phase VRM design on the standard designs meaning is over spec’d in order to deliver the best
    stability and overclock headroom by having such VRM it will run cooler and last longer.
  • DrMos and high-polymer Caps are used on our Design, no compromises.
  • DUAL FAN, at this TDP there is no need of oversized 3 fan coolers, better sized and yet efficient cooling!
  • Our cooler features 2 x 100mm ,all with two ball bearing fans with 4 heat pipes (4X6Φ) across the high density heatsink with large nickel plated base.
  • RGB is enhanced, Red Devil now connects to the motherboard aRGB (5v 3 pin connector) for RGB Sync.
  • Red Devil has Mute fan technology, fans stop under 60c!
  • The ports are LED illuminated. Now you can see in the dark where to plug.
  • The card back plate does not have thermal pads but instead we did cuts across the backplate for the PCB to breath, which under high
    heat scenarios is more beneficial than having thermal pads as the back plate can become a heat trap.
  • Red Devil buyers will be able to join exclusive giveaway as well access to the Devil Club website. A membership club for Devil users only which gives them access to News, Competitions, Downloads and most important instant support via Live chat.

RX 6000 features

Source: AMD

AMD has their own ecosystem for gamers and many unique new features for the Radeon 6000 series.  However, the above slide from AMD does not mention two features – the Infinity Cache and Smart Access Memory.

Infinity Cache & Smart Access Memory

AMD’s RDNA 2 architecture includes the Infinity Cache which alters the way data is delivered to GPUs. This global cache allows fast data
access and increases bandwidth.  This optimized on-die cache uses 96MB of AMD Infinity Cache delivering up to 2.5x the effective bandwidth compared to 256-bit 12Gbps GDDR6.

BTR uses Intel’s 10th generation flagship CPU, the i9-10990K which does not have this cache available so our results will probably be lower than what a gamer using a full Ryzen 5000 platform will achieve.  In addition, we don’t have Smart Access Memory.

AMD’s Smart Access Memory is a new feature for the Radeon RX 6000 Series graphics cards that enables additional memory space to be mapped to the base address register resulting in performance gains for select games when paired with an AMD Ryzen 5000 Series processor or with some Ryzen 3000 series CPUs.  Using PCIe, the Base Address Register (BAR) defines how much GPU memory space can be mapped.  Without using Smart Access Memory, CPUs can generally access up to 256MB of GPU memory restricting performance somewhat.

NVIDIA has worked with its partners and with Intel to enable Resizable BAR which currently is enabled for the EVGA Z490 FTW motherboard but it only works for GeForce cards.  When we tried to enable it for the RX 6600 XT, our PC refused to boot after following AMD’s instructions using a clean installation of Windows.  So we disabled it and tested all of our video cards and games without Resizable BAR.

The Test Bed 

BTR’s test bed consists of 32 games and 3 synthetic game benchmarks at 1920×1080 and 2560×1440, as well as SPEC, workstation, and GPGPU benchmarks.  Our latest games include Chernobylite and F1 2021.  The testing platform uses a recent installation of Windows 10 64-bit Pro Edition, and our CPU is an i9-10900K which turbos all 10 cores to 5.1/5.0GHz, an EVGA Z490 FTW motherboard, and 32GB of T-FORCE Dark Z DDR4 at 3600MHz. The games, settings, and hardware are identical except for the cards being compared.

First, let’s take a closer look at the new PowerColor Red Devil RX 6600 XT.