The best RX 6700 XT graphics card in 2023
We Find The Best RX 6700 XT GPU For Your Needs
Picking the Best RX 6700 XT graphics card, like when shopping for any mid-high range GPU, can be a daunting task – given it’s the most important and expensive part of any gaming PC, but this page will make that process that much easier for you.
The AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT was designed to take on the Nvidia RTX 3070, and although it didn’t quite manage to beat it in terms of 1440p gaming, for 1080p performance the two cards are fairly evenly matched and the RX 6700 XT is around $20 cheaper MSRP, not to mention easier to find on the retail market. All in all, the RX 6700 XT is a very solid choice for anyone looking to do some gaming on a 1440p monitor as well as get some serious FPS on a 1080p display.
The following article will take a look at some of the best RX 6700 XT graphics cards available on today’s market. For this shortlist we have looked across all third-party AIB versions of the card available, as well as of course the original reference version. We’ll be analyzing the pros and cons of each card, prioritizing performance, cooling, and overall value for money as we go.
Our Top Picks
How we chose the best RX 6700 XT
Selecting the top products for our best-of lists is not a simple process. Each selection takes into account performance, price, cooling, size, and build quality.
We sink hours into product research, performance benchmarking, and looking through user feedback to arrive at our decisions. If you are short on either time or experience in the specific tech niche then you will possibly end up purchasing a graphics card that is an inferior product or perhaps completely incompatible with your PC!
WePC is here to take away the stress of all that in-depth research through our easy-to-follow, buyers’ guides. We’ve done all the hard work, so you don’t have to.
How we test
The testing of the products we recommend in these guides forms a large part of the selection process. We want to ensure that each choice is the absolute best option in each specific category. In order for a product to be considered “the best,” it must show sufficiently impressive performance in our tests and superior qualities over the competition it faces.
The majority of products recommended here at WePC have gone through a strict testing process that involves everything from price and looks to performance and efficiency. Each product is pushed to the limit to see how it performs under intense stress to make sure it warrants the top spot.
Doing this enables us to provide you with the most accurate review of how the product performs and, ultimately, whether it’s worth your hard-earned cash.
Things to consider when buying a RX 6700 XT
Choosing which graphics card is best for your new build or upgrade can be a fairly tricky task – even more so if you’re not totally up to speed with the latest GPU tech know-how.
That being said, if you’ve managed to narrow down your search to the RX 6700 XT, you’ll be happy to know that there isn’t a great deal that separates the different AIBs in today’s market.
There tend to be just a few core factors that differ between each GPU AIB, which are as follows:
Most people’s number one consideration when it comes to buying, well, anything, is the price, and there can be a significant difference between the price of the various RX 6700 XT AIBs, particularly compared to the reference model.
Mostly the reason for this difference comes down to the cooler used, which enables greater clock speeds from the GPU, and the overall build quality of the graphics card. Some manufacturers may add a premium to their GPUs if they offer more ports or far better user software – but for us at WePC, these are relatively unimportant considerations.
Typically there is a diminishing return on performance per dollar the higher up the price scale you go when it comes to AIBs, however, this is not always the case, and even when it is, for some it will be worth it to have the most powerful version available.
Cooling is another hugely important factor to consider when looking into any GPU purchase. Because the GPU is one of the hardest working components (if not the hardest) in your build, they tend to get extremely hot when in use. Whilst this is great for those cold winter nights, it’s not ideal for efficiency and general longevity.
For that reason, GPU manufacturers have been fine-tuning the cooling of their graphics cards for years – with modern-day GPUs coming equipped with highly advanced cooling technology.
That said, we prioritize cooling when recommending GPUs, only selecting cards that offer the highest levels of thermal design.
Below are some tips on choosing a good GPU cooling solution:
- Triple fan setups are more efficient than dual fan setups
- Larger cooling solutions can create much more noise but are generally more efficient
- Blower-style cooling solutions (usually seen on Founder Edition GPUs) are much less efficient than generic dual/triple fan setups
Remember, the more heat your GPU creates, the higher the internal temperature of your PC will become – leading to other hardware components not running as efficiently.
The last thing you should consider before diving into a GPU purchase is the size.
The physical dimensions of graphics cards have been increasing over the last decade or so as greater performance means a need for larger cooling solutions. Due to this size increase, some people are struggling to fit newer GPUs into their aging case chassis.
The reference model of the Radeon RX 6700 XT is 266mm in length, which is not as large as some of the more powerful GPUs on the market; some of the third-party AIBs which we will look at on this page, however, with 3 fan setups and the like, are considerably larger, thanks to their bigger cooling systems.
Understanding the specs
The first specification most people will likely see on a GPU is the clock speed. Clock speed, or clock rate, refers to the speed at which the microprocessor operates. So, in its simplest form, clock speed refers to how fast your GPU can perform instructions and render graphics – albeit not the only factor that is essential in this particular department.
Despite each GPU having very similar base clock speeds, that doesn’t stop aftermarket manufacturers from overclocking their version to extract additional performance. That being the case, many manufacturers are limited to the capabilities of their cooler – the main reason why many lesser-known brands with weaker coolers will over-offer low boost clock frequencies.
VRAM can be quite a tricky specification to understand, especially if you’re relatively new to the tech world. That being said, VRAM (Video Random Access Memory) acts in the exact same way as your system RAM does. It provides your GPU with the instant data that is needed to run active programs and games more efficiently. So, having more VRAM effectively lessens the time it takes for your GPU to render a scene.
VRAM is extremely important for high-resolution 4K gameplay and also plays a huge role in how successful your GPU is in productivity-type scenarios. The base model RX 6700 XT and most of its AIBs come with 12GB of GGDR6 VRAM – more than enough for most gaming scenarios and intermediate workflow tasks.
TDP, also known as thermal design power, refers to the maximum amount of heat that the GPU’s cooler can dissipate when at full load. We usually reference TDP when discussing CPUs and the cooler they require to run efficiently.
However, because a GPU comes equipped with a pre-installed cooler, this figure doesn’t offer as much relevance – and is more geared towards marketing than any real-world performance.
That being said, it’s still a pretty good indication of how much heat your GPU will create. That said, remember, each brand determines the TDP based on a unique formula – so comparing them side by side is a fairly mundane task.
The Best RX 6700 XT Graphics Cards
- Great factory overclock
- Efficient cooling solution
- Runs quiet
- Relatively compact
- Nice aesthetics
- Not the cheapest
- Limited RGB
MSI regularly takes one of the top spots in our best GPU guides and, with this MSI Radeon RX 6700 XT Gaming X graphics card, it’s easy to see why.
The graphics card has a solid boost clock of 2622 MHz, compared to the 2581 MHz of the reference version. If you know what you’re doing, you could probably push this further to around 2750 MHz if you are so inclined. Despite this, MSI has still managed to effectively pair it with a dual-fan, Twin Frozr 8 cooling solution, instead of the triple fan setup you’d see with the Gaming X Trio graphics cards MSI also produce. This is largely thanks to the lower TDP of the RX 6700 XT compared to its Nvidia competitors.
The twin fans mean the graphics card has a shorter length, making it an ideal pick for those for whom case space is limited, though the older style shroud is still a bit on the chunky side. Despite the smaller size and thermal design – cooling remains very efficient and also benefits from being relatively quiet.
In terms of visual appeal, we think the MSI design is one of the nicer out there, although RGB may be a bit limited for some tastes – appearing only on the logo and thin strips on the top of the card. Really the only major downside of this GPU is that it’s one of the pricier on the market – but for that price, you do get quality. If you don’t want to do any GPU overclocking yourself but want it done and ready to go out of the box then this is the best RX 6700 XT out there.
- The highest factory overclock
- Massive headroom for further overclocking
- The best cooling solution
- Long and large
ASUS is back again with another high-performance ROG STRIX AIB for graphics card enthusiasts. This is not a cheap card, but it is the most powerful RX 6700 XT you are likely to find – with a factory OC boost clock of 2699 MHz right out of the box, and the most headroom for further overclocking, which can put it well up there with the performance of the RTX 3070.
If you do want to push the overclocking further (which is really the only reason you’d buy this card) 2820 MHz and over is possible with this beast thanks to the 3-fan Axial-tech cooling setup, with increased blade count on each fan and improved airflow ergonomics. The MaxXontact technology also improves the efficiency of the heatsink. Despite this, quiet fan speed is still possible by enabling silent BIOS, at a small hit to peak performance.
Besides the price, the only real downside of all this performance is the size – the ASUS ROG Strix Radeon RX 6700 XT OC is a large 2.9-slot graphics card and not suitable for smaller cases.
- Compact dimensions
- Cheap for an AIB graphics card
- Runs cool at factory speed
- Unsuitable for overclocking
- Noisy fans
- No RGB
This 228mm length PowerColor Fighter RX 6700 XT is by far the smallest version of this GPU you will find, including the vanilla reference version of the card.
The more efficient twin fan system and heatsink mean this card still packs the same base and boost clock (2321 MHz and 2581 MHz respectively) as the Founders Edition, despite being smaller. The cooling won’t stand up to any overclocking mind you, so if that’s what you want to do then pick another option on this list; though at the stock speeds, it will perform very well indeed, and get you more longevity from your card than the reference model.
This is the loudest card on this list and lacks any RGB to speak of, but it does offer the cheapest value of any AIB (i.e. non-reference) RX 6700 XT.
- The cheapest option
- Decent aesthetics
- Fairly compact compared to AIBs
- Cooling solution not the best for overclocking
The AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT is the Founders Edition/reference version of the graphics card. As tends to be the case with the original vanilla version of the graphics card, it has the joint slowest clock speed on this list, and the least advanced cooling – meaning it is unsuitable for anything more than slight overclocking.
Reference versions of graphics cards tend to have shorter effective lifespans, and their performance drops more noticeably over time, as the less powerful cooling means more strain is put on the GPU – wearing it down. We do not necessarily know if this will prove to be the case for the RX 6700 XT or any other recently released card until enough time has passed, we can only look to previous examples.
All that being said this card gives the best performance per price of any of the cards listed here and, whilst nothing special, it looks pretty nice in our opinion. It’s not the smallest RX 6700 XT, but it certainly is more compact than most AIBs. Overall this is a great choice if you’re looking to pick up an RX 6700 XT but have a limited budget.
Best RX 6700 XT Graphics Cards frequently asked questions
Is the RX 6700 XT better than the RTX 3070?
The AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT matches the Nvidia RTX 3070 in 1080p performance, though the Nvidia card outperforms in 1440p gaming and at 4K. The RTX 3070 also has Ray Tracing and DLSS support (though both have AMD FSR), but it is slightly more expensive at MSRP and harder to find in stock.
What is the 6700 XT equivalent to?
For its Nvidia equivalent, the closest option is the RTX 3070. They are closely related in performance but vary in what is on offer in terms of specifications and the software behind it. But there is no reason to favor one over the other, so it’s best to see what is available at a decent price.
What is the best RX 6700 XT?
For the best choice of RX 6700 XT, the MSI Gaming X is a great GPU to choose from. As it combines good quality build with the performance offered. Whilst the ASUS ROG Strix is also a good choice of card for the same qualities. With the PowerColor Fighter is a good budget option for basic needs.
This has been our guide to the best RX 6700 XT graphics card, we hope it has proved useful in helping you come to a decision about which one is right for you.
All-in-all the AMD RX 6700 XT GPU is a solid mid-high-range graphics card, suitable for 1080p or 1440p gaming. Each third-party AIB version of the GPU on this page has its own strengths, weaknesses, and price point that will make them each suitable for different consumers with different needs.
Be sure to have a look at our where to buy the AMD Radeon RX 6700 series page if you’re struggling to find any in stock in your country. If you have any other questions regarding this graphics card or any others, be sure to drop us a comment below.
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