Sapphire RX 5600XT Pulse Review
Whenever we get a new product in for review we receive some blurb from the manufacturers about its features and where the company expect it to fit into the marketplace. Normally this comes in the form of some very selective tests which show off their product in its best light, against some arbitrarily chosen competition. Like Nvidia might compare their new 1660Ti against a GTX 760 or something. Everyone is guilty of it, but it doesn't really matter to us because that's why we do the testing to find out what these products are like in the real world. However, the competitor chosen does give you a glimpse into where in the marketplace the company are pitching their card/processor etc. For the RX 5600 XT the chosen card was indeed the Nvidia GTX 1660Ti and 1660 Super.
We have to confess we were slightly disappointed by this expected performance given that the RX 5700 XT was a monster and this is a well specified card. But, for the first time in a long while, the facts paint the RX 5600 XT in a much better light than AMD had claimed in their overview. If you want an idea of how good the RX 5600 XT is you need to look no further than the recent, and sudden, price cut Nvidia have given to their RTX 2060 cards. The moment we started testing the Sapphire RX 5600 XT Pulse it was clear that this was no ordinary card aimed at taking the 1080P market from their rivals, but instead is a card which stands toe to toe with the RTX 2060 Super no less, and matches it blow for blow.
Our graphs are sorted by the 4K result, a resolution which nobody is expecting cards at this end of the market to manage to run smoothly, but a good indication of the overall level of power in the card. There are many graphics cards which can handle 1080P but rapidly run out of puff as you move up the resolutions, but the 4K result is, even on these cards, a demonstration of how it performs with everything turned up to the max and therefore a glimpse at whether it would even be worth using with more judicious settings. Even here the Sapphire Pulse was matched with the RTX 2060 Super more often than not, and when we look at the results obtained at the two resolutions at which the card is expected to perform - 1080P and 1440P - we find it's more than capable of giving you buttery smooth gaming. Possibly the most challenging title in our test suite is Borderlands 3, and even here, with all the settings cranked up as high as they will go and with maximum anti-aliasing employed, the RX 5600 XT Pule bracketed the GTX 1080 and was only two or three FPS behind the RTX 2060 Super. It would only take a minor reduction in anti-aliasing to move that 45 FPS @ 1440P to above 60 FPS. In nearly every other title it blitzed the 1440 resolution and sat at triple digit frame rates at 1080.
We hate the term "gamer on a budget", because pretty much everyone on earth falls into that category, but if you are a gamer that doesn't sink all their money into their gaming habit it is very probable that you don't have a 4K panel, but instead have wisely chosen a good 2560x1440 display or a truly epic 1920x1080 one, and if that is you and you want to play all the latest titles with so much eye candy that your retinas will get diabetes then the Sapphire RX 5600 XT Pulse is a perfect choice, matching the RTX 2060 Super blow for blow and doing so with a careful eye on your energy bill and a cooler than not only does the cooling bit but does it quietly. With the addition of the low latency modes for those of you who game competitively the Navi equipped card is a great all-rounder.
At this price it's an absolute steal and wins our OC3D Gamers Choice Award.