The Best Radeon RX 5500 XT Graphics Cards
While it isn’t the most expensive graphics card we’ve looked at, the Radeon RX 5500 XT still manages to stake a huge claim in the sub-$200 GPU market.
An improvement to the Radeon RX 5500 model, the RX 5500 XT offers clock speeds of up to 1670 MHz with the ability to boost up to 1845 MHz. This card also has a max memory size of 8 GB of GDDR6 and a TDP of 130 W. As with all aftermarket solutions, you’ll be able to improve your clock speeds as well as the look of your card if you want to.
We’ve put together a guide on some of the best aftermarket solutions as well as some advice to keep in mind when shopping around for graphics cards in general.
How We Choose The Best Graphics Cards
To make sure we have the right components for our build guides, we make sure to comb through all of the latest and greatest graphics cards. Whether or not we are reviewing for a budget build or a monster system, we make sure to give the cards we review the benchmarking time they deserve.
We do this so you don’t have to. Choosing a GPU for your build can be a very time-consuming and stressful experience. If you’re not too sure what you are looking for and rush in, you might not end up with the best part for your build.
We’ve taken all the hard work off your hands and put it all into an easy to digest guide. Today we’ll be focusing on the best Radeon RX 5500 XT graphics cards by comparing some of the most popular aftermarket models.
How We Test
The main bulk of the work we do on any component is testing. This allows us to be absolutely sure in what we’re recommending and that it is the best choice for the build we’re creating.
Many of the products we write about at WePC have gone through a rigorous testing process that looks at all facets of the component. We’ll look at price, performance, efficiency and any additional features available when comparing these cards.
This allows us to recommend the products that we believe are truly worth it. Before we get onto the bulk of the cards today, we’ll give you a short look at what we focus on when comparing the best Radeon RX 5500 XT graphics cards.
Things To Consider
When looking at graphics cards we tend to focus on a few key areas. We’ve made a quick list below so you can get an idea of what we look at. These are the main things you’ll want to look at when deciding whether to purchase a card.
First and foremost, the price of a graphics card is often the main thing on people’s mind when comparing. While the Radeon RX 5500 XT is priced fairly low to begin with, some of the aftermarket editions come with a slight increase in price.
Some of these cards are worth looking at if you have a bit of breathing room in your budget but you’ll have to decide if the extra speed and/or features are worth it.
When it comes to performance, people often look at this in conjunction with the price of the unit. While more money certainly equals greater performance, it can come to the point where the price per performance gained simply isn’t worth it.
When looking at graphics cards you’ll want to have a general idea of the titles you wish to play and the performance you expect. If you want to run games at 4k resolution, the RX 5500 XT probably isn’t the card to do so. Matching these expectations to the graphics card will give you a good idea of if it’s right for you.
Make sure that the rest of your build lives up to the graphics card though. There’s no point in the GPU being the star component in your build if you don’t have an adequate CPU or even a suitable cooling solution to go with it!
If you are going to be playing a lot of high-performance titles, you’ll need to make sure your GPU stays as cool as possible in order to extract the best performance.
While most GPUs now come with cooling solutions, these are generally only suitable for the cards rated TDP. If you are looking to overclock and push your card to the limit, you may want to look at alternative cooling solutions such as water-cooling or additional case fans.
Before you get carried away and purchase a GPU, you’ll need to double-check that it fits in the case of your system for starters. You’ll be able to find dimensions on each of the main product pages.
Higher-powered GPUs are often larger than the more budget options. You’ll likely have no trouble fitting an RX 5500 XT into your case, but it’s best to double-check!
Understanding The Specs
We’re going to use a bit of jargon in this article but don’t worry, we’ve made an effort to briefly explain some of the more common phrases you may see when shopping around.
If you’re going to be spending upwards of $200 on a graphics card, it’s a great idea to know what some of these improved features actually translate to.
One of the core things you’ll want to look at in your GPU is the clock speed that it can achieve.
The clock speed is simply the rate that the processor in the GPU performs instructions. While it’s generally good to have a greater clock speed, this doesn’t necessarily translate to raw performance.
Depending on how far along you are with your build, you’ll likely have already heard of RAM. VRAM is simply the amount of RAM your GPU has on board. This has a direct impact on how well your GPU performs.
In the same way that your system uses RAM, VRAM is used to hold data that your GPU can access at any time. The more VRAM you have available, the less you’ll have to rely on going to the CPU for data.
With up to 8 GB of GDDR6 VRAM available, the RX 5500 XT offers great value performance for its price bracket.
When we talk about overclocking, this refers to the act of pushing your component past its usual limits in order to gain greater performance. Overclocking is a great way to squeeze out some more FPS but you need to be wary of temperatures when doing so.
The Best Radeon RX 5500 XT
Now we’ve gone over the basics, let’s take a look at some of the many RX 5500 XT aftermarket cards available in the series.
There doesn’t appear to be much to go off when it comes to clock speed on the aftermarket RX 5500 XT models. You’ll notice this has been listed as ‘game clock speed’ rather than just clock speed. The base clock speed is a bit lower than the listed game clock speed, but this refers to what you’ll generally experience while gaming.
ASUS ROG Strix Radeon RX 5500 XT
- Efficient cooling system
- RGB Lighting
The ASUS ROG version of this card is an excellent choice for those looking to push 60 FPS at a resolution of 1080p. One of the main features we love about this card is the cooling system they have included which does an excellent job at keeping temperatures down.
The card includes two axial fans that work by producing pressure differences in order to create airflow. This allows the fans to spin slower while still keeping the temperatures down.
There is also an element of RGB on this card which covers the ROG logo on the side. You can customize the colors with ASUS’ AURA Sync tech.
Finally, the ASUS variant of this card comes with four display ports which means it can accept up to four displays at one time.
Gigabyte Radeon RX 5500 XT GAMING OC 8G
- Looks great
- Three fans
The Gigabyte card comes with a different cooling solution when compared with the ROG variant. Using their Windforce cooling system, the RX 5500 XT comes with three 80mm fans, two composite copper heat pipes, and an active fan functionality.
When it comes to design, this card includes Gigabyte’s RGB Fusion 2.0 which allows for RGB functionality on the GIGABYTE logo on the card. The card sports an all-black finish which highlights just how impressive the alternating fan system looks.
MSI Radeon RX 5500 XT GAMING X 8 GB
- Stylish design
- RGB Lighting
The MSI Radeon RX 5500 XT card is a stylish dual-fan option that comes in a mix of gunmetal grey and black with red accents. There is also a slightly larger RGB area on this card which can add a bit of color to your build if that’s what you are looking for.
This card comes with MSI’s Twin Frozr 7 Thermal design that helps keep the card running as cooly as possible. The new version of the MSI TORX fan helps create a focused airflow while also keeping noise levels low. These fans will also stop spinning when temperatures are low to help stay as silent as possible.
This 8 GB model paired with MSI’s famed Afterburner software can allow you to really push this card to the limit. You’ll have real-time full control when engaging in any overclocking.
PowerColor Red Dragon Radeon RX 5500 XT
- Smaller form
- Mute Fan technology
- Limited display ports
If you’re looking for a smaller factor graphics card that doesn’t sacrifice any quality when it comes to performance and cooling, the PowerColor Red Dragon is a great option. With its Mute Fan Technology, the fans will automatically turn off once temperatures are lower than 60 degrees Celsius.
The design of this card is very sleek, while it’s smaller in size when compared to a three-fan model, the 1.5mm metal backplate and small form factor help it stand out. There’s not much in the way of additional features such as RGB here, but if you’re looking for a simple but powerful card, this is a good bet.
There are only 3 display ports on this card though, one HDMI, one DisplayPort, and a DVI port. If you’re looking to connect additional monitors, one of the above cards may be more suitable.
There you have it, there are a couple of cards we’ve not included this time but it seems like there isn’t much to separate the RX 5500 XT offerings. All of the cards we’ve included this time have been the 8 GB models as there isn’t much of a price difference between that and the 4 GB model, it’s always better to go for the higher amount of VRAM if possible to keep your performance levels high.
If we had to pick our favorite card from the bunch, it would probably be the Gigabyte Radeon RX 5500 XT due to the impressive alternate fan cooling solution. You’ll have to make sure your case can fit this card in though as the fans increase the size a fair bit.
If you are looking for a budget card, the PowerColor Red Dragon is a great card for any system. It’s not packed with features and RGB like the rest of the cards, but it still offers great performance for the price.