GPUs Graphics Reviews

AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT review – with the last-minute BIOS boost to an efficient RTX-2060 killer?

AMD made an interesting move at the last moment and shifted the Radeon RX 5600 XT into a new performance class virtually overnight via BIOS upgrade. This review will answer whether this goes well and whether one can beat the now targeted opponent in the form of the GeForce RTX 2060 6GB. Spoilers I can at this point however already once that the power consumption will offer a surprise. At least in direct comparison to the GeForce RTX 2060. Crowbar or moneybox? We'll settle that today, I promise.

Board Design

Powercolor uses the board design of the Radeon RX 5700 (XT) Red Dragon, but despite the low TDP, this rather economical board still uses a 6+2 phase design, in which the 6 GPU phases (VDDC) each drive a single control loop. Doubler or a parallel connection is not found. This task is performed by the IR 35271 from International Rectifier, which uses special gate drivers to drive the power stages as voltage regulators. Each of the VDDC loops is equipped with a NCP302155, which combines the high and low side as well as Schottky diode in one package. This is then smoothed out with a 150 nH coil. A similar control circuit for the SoC is also located underneath with a smaller NCP302045 including a 330 nH coil.

The memory (MVDD) is supplied with two phases generated by an ON Semi NCP 81022N. The voltage regulator is again a NCP302045 with a 330 nH coil for smoothing. The total of six 1 GB memory modules from Micron with 14 Gbps are then connected to these phases. The 8-pin connection runs via a 560-nH smoothing coil to the four connected control loops, as the other two phases are located on the 12-volt rail of the motherboard slot.

 

Apart from the PWM controller for the GPU and the SoC, there are only a few active components on the back, including the voltage regulators for various partial voltages.

 

Here once again the summary of the most important components:

IR 35271 VDDC PWM-Controller ON Semi NCP302155 Power Stage, VDDC VDDC Coil, 150 nH
ON Semi NCP 81022N, MVDD PWM Controller ON Semi NCP302045 Power Stage, Coil 330 nH, MVDD ON Semi NCP302045 Power Stage, Coil 330 nH, SoC
DIP Schalter, BIOS Switch EEPROMs, Dual BIOS Micron MT61K256M32JE-14, 1 GB, 14 Gbps

Cooler design

The card has a base plate supporting the cooler, in which a copper heatsink has been inserted above the GPU. The four 6 mm heatpipes made of nickel-plated copper composite material have been flanged to the back of the base plate. This baseplate also cools the six memory modules but not the two MOSFETs of the MVDD voltage regulators, which (can) remain uncooled.

 

The close-up shows once again very well where the one heatpipe has been saved, which will now be on board again from the second delivery.

The voltage regulators are cooled by a separate heat sink anchored in the cooler. Exemplary. The cooling fins are arranged vertically, which forces the exhaust air towards the side of the case and the motherboard.

The backplate actively cools the areas of the board below the voltage converters. All in all, a mature cooling system has been installed on a rather economical board. This makes one hope for a very quiet operation, especially later with a heatpipe more.

Fan 2x 9,5 cm rotor diameter
11 rotor blades
Turbulence, high throughput
Fins Vertikally
GPU Cooling
Copper-Heatsink, 4x 6-mm-Heatpipes
Memory Cooling
Common base plate
VRM Cooling
Own heat sink in the cooler
Pads 1 mm (Memory, VRM)
Fan Mode Semi-Passive-Modus, Fan-Stop

 

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About the author

Igor Wallossek

Editor-in-chief and name-giver of igor'sLAB as the content successor of Tom's Hardware Germany, whose license was returned in June 2019 in order to better meet the qualitative demands of web content and challenges of new media such as YouTube with its own channel.

Computer nerd since 1983, audio freak since 1979 and pretty much open to anything with a plug or battery for over 50 years.

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