Radeon RX 6600 (Sapphire Pulse) review

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Radeon RX 6600 review - Sapphire Pulse 

Join us as we examine a new revision of NAVI23-based graphics cards. Specifically, we will be looking at the Radeon RX 6600 (that's non-XT), and in particular the Sapphire Pulse variant, in this review. If it is indeed the price-to-performance warrior that AMD claims it to be, we will investigate it further. Historically, the x600 series was positioned between entry-level and mainstream, generally in the 150–200 USD range. In 2021 we now need to pay 339 USD (starting price) for a graphics card aimed at the Full HD range. The 6600 cards will include a GPU based on NAVI23. This means that Navi 23 GPU is being repurposed, but its performance in the render engine is being somewhat neutered. The cards are fitted with 8 GB of GDDR6 memory connected via a 128-bit wide memory interface, which is quite constrained. A 32 MB Infinity Cache is serving as a buffer to bypass the limitation to some extent. The series card is expected to perform at the same level as the RX 5700 and GTX 2060, making it a plausible card for 1080p or a valid card at 1440p gaming. Where the Radeon RX 6600 XT contains 2048 stream processors, the RX 6600 is equipped with 1792 of them. A large number of companies (AIB/AIC) have announced their own variations and configurations of the card. 

The "Navi 23" chip is not new; it is already in use as the Radeon RX 6600M graphics solution for notebooks, which was introduced with the Radeon RX 6800M and 6700M graphics solutions for laptops a while ago. The majority of cards will use a dual-slot dual-fan cooler; they will include a single 8-pin PCI-Express graphics connection with a rated power consumption of 132 watts. Where the Radeon RX 6600 XT is to cost a rather extravagant 379 USD as a base reference product the 6600 will cost 339 USD. You may expect board partner cards with custom designs and cooling to sit well above the 350 USD marker. We can already share that the pricing is the biggest culprit of this product series. We've laid out the important specifications in the table below to give you a better idea of what to expect.


AMD Radeon RX 6000 Series
RX 6900 XTRX 6800XTRX 6800RX 6700 XTRX 6600 XTRX 6600
GPU Navi 21 XT(XH) Navi 21 XT Navi 21 XL Navi 22 XT Navi 23 XT Navi 23 XL
Cores 5120 4608 3840 2560 2048 1792
TMUs 320 288 240 160 128 112
ROPs 128 128 96 64 64 64
Infinity Cache 128 MB 128 MB 128 MB 96 MB 32 MB 32 MB
Boost Clock 2250 MHz 2250 MHz 2105 MHz 2581 MHz 2589 MHz 2491 MHz
Memory Clock 16 Gbps 16 Gbps 16 Gbps 16 Gbps 16 Gbps 16 Gbps
Memory 16 GB GDDR6 16 GB GDDR6 16 GB GDDR6 12 GB GDDR6 8 GB GDDR6 8 GB GDDR6
Memory Bus 256-bit 256-bit 256-bit 192-bit 128-bit 128-bit
Bandwidth 512 GB/s 512 GB/s 512 GB/s 384 GB/s 256 GB/s 256 GB/s
TBP 300W 300W 250W 230W 160W 132W
MSRP 999 USD 649 USD 579 USD 479 USD 379 USD 339 USD
Launch Date December 2020 November 2020 November 2020 March 2021 August 2021 October 2021

In this specific review, we'll take a look at the Sapphire Pulse model, which, despite the fact that it's substantially less complicated than a high-end model, only comes near to living up to its name. The card features reference frequencies and has been armed with two fans. it is 20 centimeters in length, offering a compact design. It's quite silent. Anyway, let's get into the review proper by starting with some images and a quick summary of the architecture.

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