Best RX 6950 XT Graphics Card

If you're looking to grab the RX 6950 XT graphics card, but don't know which model is the best one, then check out this quick rundown.

The RX 6900 XT is an absolute beast of a card and quickly beat Nvidia’s flagship RTX 3090. But, with Nvidia’s launch of the RTX 3090 Ti, the new flagship, AMD had to introduce a new competitor, the Radeon RX 6950 XT.

Overall, this new card fares well against the green team while priced accordingly. So, if you are looking to grab this flagship card, you’ll probably want to know which AIB model is the best one.

So, let’s have a look at some of the options and figure that out!

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The Pros:

  • Beautiful white-themed design
  • One of the best RX 6950 XT overclocks we’ve seen (without liquid cooling)
  • Cool and quiet

The Cons:

  • Price premium

Let’s see!

Sapphire has always dipped its hands into AMD’s high-end SKUs to create monster GPUs. Sapphire’s RX 6900 XT Toxic (liquid cooled) is a good example.

This time around, the RX 6950 XT gets a NITRO+ Pure model, making it just a bit more premium than the regular NITRO+.

Pricing

The MSRP for the RX 6950 XT is $1,100, just $100 over its little brother (6900 XT). Sapphire sets a $150 price premium, making this Sapphire Radeon RX 6590 XT NITRO+ Pure $1,250.

Design

Sapphire decided to make an extremely thick heatsink and shroud for this powerhouse of a GPU. It’s around 13mm thicker than the regular Nitro+ version.

But, it’s also entirely different from the original Nitro+ design. The white color is dominant around the entire GPU with only a couple of silver, grey, and black accents. The black fans and white shroud combo pair nicely.

With such a premium card, you’ll obviously get enough RGB that’s located on the side and on the back of the card. There’s also a pretty thick metal backplate.

Overall, we feel this is a fantastic design with a high-quality feel which should fit perfectly into any kind of PC build. But it would definitely work better in a white-themed PC.

Performance And Overclocking Capabilities

Sapphire gives users two factory boost clock options. Either 2368 MHz with the default BIOS or 2435 MHz with the OC BIOS. This can be done through the BIOS switch on the card.

With the RX 6950 XT set to the OC BIOS, this GPU’s clocks jump up to 2630 MHz and average around 2570 MHz. Again, this is substantially faster than the official specifications.

But, with an exceptional card like this, we can’t ignore the overclocking potential.

Pushing the power limits on Sapphire’s RX 6950 XT NITRO+ Pure, GPU clocks can be increased to 2800 MHz. That’s an 18% difference in clock frequency (over stock specifications) which can deliver up to 10% performance in-game.

Thermals And Acoustics

Cooling is not easy for a card that draws up to 400W from the socket. But, Sapphire has put quite a hefty heatsink on the RX 6950 XT, so temperatures peak at 76°C while noise levels sit around 29 dBA.

So, maybe a bit hot, but still quiet. Note that the OC BIOS could lead to a hotter and louder experience.

The Pros:

  • All around great card

The Cons:

  • Price premium
  • No unique style, design, or features for a $1,300 card

While this is AMD’s flagship GPU, it isn’t Gigabyte’s flagship AIB. But, the Gaming OC cooling design usually doesn’t disappoint, so let’s check out how this Gigabyte Radeon RX 6950 XT Gaming OC.

Pricing

Even though this isn’t Gigabyte’s most premium cooler design, the price increase over AMD’s MSRP is confusingly large. Gigabyte priced this card at $1,300, making it more expensive than Sapphire’s Nitro+ Pure design.

Design

The Gaming OC design is already well-known, and it hasn’t changed for this flagship GPU. It’s a primarily black GPU with a bit of gray/silver here and there.

Although the backplate has seen some changes to allow for better heat dissipation and airflow.

Performance And Overclocking Capabilities

The average clock speed of this GPU between various games is around 2500 MHz. We always like to see cards performing better than what is advertised.

The overclocking potential is slightly worse than the Sapphire AIB, with GPU clocks going up to 2730 MHz.

Thermals And Acoustics

While not as tall, Gigabyte’s RX 6950 XT Gaming OC is longer and wider than the Sapphire counterpart, so there’s definitely room for some proper cooling.

On its default BIOS, temperature peaks at 68°C with noise levels sitting around 36 dBA. Not bad, but it could use a better fan curve to be quieter.

The Pros:

  • Great overclock potential
  • Quiet

The Cons:

  • Price premium

Let’s check it out!

MSI’s Gaming X Trio has been a hit every time and never a miss. But this card is a bit more power hungry, so is the Gaming X Trio cooling setup enough for AMD’s Radeon RX 6950 XT?

Pricing

Another considerable price premium over AMD’s MSRP at $1,250, but it is at least priced cheaper than the Gaming OC.

Design

MSI’s Gaming X Trio design always gets praise from us, and since there isn’t any difference compared to other Gaming X Trio GPUs, there’s no reason not to do so again.

Even the dimensions are almost identical to the RX 6800 XT and RX 6900 XT.

This GPU weighs 1605 grams and feels like a high-quality product even though the black shroud surrounding the heatsink is plastic. In addition, the backplate is made out of metal which further improves the feel of this card.

Performance And Overclocking Capabilities

The clock speed is rated for 2454 MHz out of the box. Realistically though, the GPU’s average clocks sit at 2500+ MHz out of the box.

If that’s not enough, MSI’s card is open to some solid overclocking, with the core clock reaching 2790 MHz.

Thermals And Acoustics

MSI’s Radeon RX 6950 XT Gaming X Trio might be the GPU that hits 95 degrees (Celsius) on the hotspot and 77°C on the GPU sensor, but it’s still pretty quiet at 31 dBA.

If you don’t want a space heater in your PC, you could either create a more aggressive fan curve or maybe try undervolting or underclocking.

The Pros:

  • The most unique RX 6950 XT of the bunch
  • Fantastic design
  • Highest overclocking potential
  • Cool and quiet thanks to water cooling

The Cons:

  • Price (water cooled GPUs have insanely high prices even after considering the benefits)

A bit of an unconventional card since this wouldn’t fit in just any system. The Powercolor RX 6950 XT Liquid Devil is a GPU for a water cooling loop only. It does not come with its own radiator, so you can skip this one if you don’t have such a cooling loop in your system.

Pricing

Unfortunately, there is no official price tag for Powercolor’s liquid-cooled beast. Because of this, ridiculously high prices are feasible, especially since this is such a premium card.

We estimate that this GPU costs at least $1,400 and $1,800 at most.

Design

As we already mentioned before, this is an unconventional card, so it is unique design-wise.

Obviously, since it is water-cooled, there are no fans on it. Instead of fans, there’s a water block paired with the PCB. The entire GPU is mostly black, with a giant Liquid Devil logo on it, but there are also some transparent segments from which you can see the water flow.

The transparent plastic also enhances the RGB lighting.

Performance And Overclocking Capabilities

The Liquid Devil comes with a switch for two BIOS options. The OC (default) BIOS comes with a 2513 MHz GPU clock boost. On the other hand, the Unleash BIOS brings a 2565 MHz boost.

But, let’s be honest. If you’re getting this type of card, you will definitely want to overclock it. So, you can quickly crank up the power limit and send the RX 6950 XT up to 2800 MHz. This should be stable, and with enough tweaking, the Liquid Devil will most certainly reach higher boost clocks (up to 2850 MHz).

Thermals And Acoustics

Not only is this an overclocking beast, but thanks to PowerColor’s quality water block, this GPU is also exceptionally cool. At stock, the GPU peaks at just under 50 degrees Celsius.

And, of course, you won’t have to worry about noise levels since this card does not have any fans. Although, the amount of noise your system will produce is relative. It depends on the airflow in the case, fans, and other factors.

Which AMD RX 6950 XT Graphics Card Should You Buy?

With four RX 6950 XT AIBs to pick from, which one is really the best you can get?

Well, if you’re looking to build the most powerful system money can buy, Powercolor’s RX 6950 XT Liquid Devil is the definite Premium Pick.

But, for those who want to invest their money in other PC parts, consider MSI’s Radeon RX 6950 XT Gaming X Trio as the Best Value option.

Of course, the Sapphire Nitro+ PURE is another excellent GPU.

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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.