Best RX 6700 XT Graphics Card

The AMD RX 6700 XT is a great GPU. We've done all the research and identified the best RX 6700 XT graphics cards of all time.

In the ongoing battle for GPU supremacy, in March 2021, AMD finally presented something competitive in the market against the mid-tier RTX 3060Ti and higher-end RTX 3070.

This was the RX 6700 XT. Before that reveal, the RX 6800 and RX 6800 XT were the only solid price-for-performance choices on the market. However, both of these cards were priced over $500, which is more than many PC gamers were willing (or able) to pay.

The MSRP of the RX 6700 XT is $479. Unfortunately, AIB partners have not disclosed a price for their aftermarket cards, so we can only guess the MSRP of these cards. Keep in mind; aftermarket cards are usually $20 to $100 more expensive than the reference design.

If you have already decided that this is the right GPU for your computer, take a look at our list of the best RX 6700 XTs.

best overall

ASUS Radeon RX 6700 XT STRIX OC

ASUS Radeon RX 6700 XT STRIX OC
  • Excellent cooling
  • Great design
best value

AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT Reference Card

AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT Reference Card
  • Amazing value for money

The Pros:

  • Compact
  • Solid cooling and factory overclock
  • Fine design

The Cons:

  • No obvious disadvantages

Unlike all the previous GPUs in the RX 6000 lineup and NVIDIA’s 3000 lineups, the RX 6700 XT only features two fans this time. This is why its name doesn’t feature the popular “Trio” tag.

However, we need to remember that this is much less power-hungry GPU than the rest of the SKUs, so a triple-fan setup is probably not necessary.

In any case, let’s see what the numbers have to say about the RX 6700 XT Gaming X.

Design

The design is very similar to all the other Gaming X Trio models we’ve seen with the RTX 3000 and RX 6000 GPUs. The main difference is that it is much shorter in length, being only 279 mm, and has two fans, instead of the standard three.

The light bar on the side of the card has also been removed, but there’s still some RGB left on the MSI logo.

On the back, there is nothing too interesting to see, only a metal backplate with the familiar MSI dragon and a few thermal pads under it.

Performance and Overclocking Capabilities

In terms of performance, it looks pretty promising with an average boost clock in-game of about 2680 MHz. This is not much more than the advertised boost clocks, but anything extra is still welcome.

When it comes to overclocking, it appears there is a bit of headroom on most RX 6700 XT variants. This AIB has an average OC of about 2750 MHz. With this kind of increase in the core clocks, expect a 5% to 8% improvement to in-game performance.

Thermals

As previously mentioned, the RX 6700 XT is a less power-hungry GPU, which is why MSI opted for the TWIN FROZR 8 cooling solution instead of the TRI FROZR 2 we are familiar with as it was used on the GPUs released in late 2020.

Either way, the dual-fan cooling setup is good enough to handle the power draw of 240 W.

After a longer stress test, the temperature averages around 67 degrees C. That is pretty cool and about 10 degrees cooler than the reference card. It is also much cooler than the reference cards of the 3060 TI and 3070, which is nice to see.

The Pros:

  • Best cooling solution for an RX 6700 XT
  • Great design
  • Impressive stock OC and OC headroom

The Cons:

  • Nothing to complain about

A STRIX variation of this card was expected. ASUS delivers the STRIX treatment for almost all mid and high-end GPUs.

Unlike MSI, ASUS retains the triple-fan setup and the thickness of the heatsink is about the same as most of the other 2020 and 2021 STRIX graphics cards.  

Design

This RX 6700 XT STRIX OC takes on the same design found on all the other STRIX AIBs from 2020. In short, it looks pretty good. It has an industrial aesthetic and it is quite long at 322 millimeters, much longer than the Gaming X. It is important to keep that kind of information in mind, especially if you have a smaller case.

On the side of the GPU, there is a lot of RGB which is executed perfectly. ASUS always delivers in that aspect.

There is minimal branding on the back which is always nice to see. It fits in with any case and motherboard combo.

Performance and Overclocking Capabilities

This STRIX comes with an advertised boost clock a bit higher than MSI’s Gaming X at 2669MHz. The average clock speed during heavy and long loads stays around that advertised number.

If you want to push the GPU further, there is also some OC headroom available. If you ramp up the fan curve a bit, you can tweak the STRIX to 2820+ MHz.

Thermals

As this is a triple-fan card, lower temperatures were expected and that’s exactly what the numbers show us.

By enabling the silent BIOS, temperatures stay around 59°C with a pretty low fan RPM. GPU noise levels remain under 33 dBA.

If you don’t care about the noise, you can switch back to the performance BIOS which has a more aggressive fan curve but keeps temperatures down to an average of 53°C. This is very impressive.

The Pros:

  • Minimalist design
  • Fine cooling

The Cons:

  • Mediocre stock OC
  • Cooling could be better considering it’s a triple-fan GPU

Like ASUS, XFX is providing the RX 6700 XT with the same treatment as all the other GPUs released in late 2020. It is the same MERC 319 design that you can see on the RX 6800, RX 6800 XT, and RX 6900 XT.

On those other GPUs, this design and cooling solution from XFX proved to be quite effective and the cards did boost pretty well.

Can the RX 6700 XT MERC 319 live up to the standards set by XFX themselves?

Design

XFX has gone with a pretty minimalist style, something rarely seen on the GPU market these days.

On the front, you will see the classic triple-fan MERC 319 setup with a completely matte black shroud around them. This looks pretty clean.

There is 6700 XT and XFX branding on the side, with both being RGB.

The back is slightly more interesting. There’s a cutout in the backplate in the shape of the XFX logo and a large white MERC logo. This doesn’t really fit in with the GPU considering its otherwise minimalist style.

The backplate is metal and features thermal pads for better heat dissipation.

Performance and Overclocking Capabilities

The advertised factory boost clock is 2581 MHz, but that appears to not always be the case because the GPU drops down to an average of around 2560 MHz.

Usually, these AIBs advertise a lower boost clock and then deliver a much better factory OC, but that seems to not be the case here, which is unfortunate.

If you want to push this card further, you could always try overclocking. The OC headroom is similar to the Gaming X, averaging at 2740 or 2750 MHz.

Thermals

A triple-fan cooling solution should perform better than the MSI variant’s TWIN FROZR 8 and it does so. It’s about four to five degrees Celsius lower, averaging at around 63°C with max noise levels at 34dBA.

This isn’t bad but, considering the STRIX runs ten degrees cooler, it isn’t the best triple-fan RX 6700 XT.

The Pros:

  • Best performance per dollar
  • Okay design

The Cons:

  • Could use a better fan-curve

Aftermarket cards are always more efficient at cooling and are overall faster than the reference card. This applies to both AMD and NVIDIA GPUs.

However, that improved efficiency and performance come at a price. This RX 6700 XT reference card is not that bad in terms of cooling; it might be the best price-for-performance variant of the lot.

Design

AMD has stuck with a similar design found on the other SKUs in their lineup. The only difference is that this comes with two fans, rather than the usual triple-fan setup.

It is also one of the smallest and lightest, weighing only 882 grams and 267 mm in length. If you have a smaller case, this might be your most suitable option.

Most of the enclosure is made of metal, which is nice to see. The backplate is also metal but has no thermal pads.

There’s a red accent on the edge of the GPU and also some RGB. This is nothing too special, but it still looks great.

Performance and Overclocking Capabilities

This RX 6700 XT variant averages around 2600 MHz, pretty close to the advertised clock frequency.

For increased performance, it is possible to reach 2700 MHz, but the fan curve will need to be very aggressive. In other words, it’s going to be loud with a custom OC.

Thermals

Impressive thermal results shouldn’t be expected from these reference cards, but they are not too bad either.

Under heavy load, the GPU averages about 76°C, much hotter than all the other variants mentioned above. At least the noise levels stay below 40 dBA, thanks to the steady and tame fan curve.

If you want better thermals, you can always push the fan curve higher.

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Which RX 6700 XT Should You Get?

Your choices should have been narrowed down by this article, but there are still four different brands to choose from. Which of these is the right option for your situation?

ASUS’s Radeon RX 6700 XT STRIX OC is Best Overall. This GPU doesn’t lack in any aspect. It has the lowest temperatures of all the 6700 XTs, a great factory overclock and a bit of OC headroom. This is a great choice, even if it comes with a higher price tag.

The RX 6700 XT Reference Card deserves the spot for Best Value. Even if you consider the worse factory overclock and hotter recorded temperature, it’s a great deal for just $469. It is the best bang for your buck for sure. It’s also the shortest RX 6700 XT.

If you are looking for a smaller GPU but a better design than the reference card, the Gaming X is a great alternative.

The MERC 319 is also a good alternative to the STRIX OC if you are unable to find the ASUS variant at a reasonable price.

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Branko Gapo
Branko Gapo

Keeping up with the incredibly fast evolution of computer technology is impossible. That is why Branko will be using his knowledge on this matter to share news and information on all the latest essential technological innovations and advancements.