AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT: performance analysis

Rise of the Tomb Raider, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, The Witcher 3.

Our tests on the RX 5600 XT and 5600 XT OC conclude with three more challenging titles: Rise of the Tomb Raider, Shadow of the Tomb Raider and The Witcher 3. Our test system for all benches across this entire review consists of a Core i7 8700K running at an all-core turbo speed of 4.7GHz. This is paired with two 8GB sticks of 3400MHz DDR4 supplied by GSkill, with all titles running from PCIe-attached solid state storage to avoid streaming issues. A Gamer Storm Castle 240mm AiO liquid cooler is used to keep the power-hungry 8700K in check.

Depending on how you view this page, our performance metrics are presented in one of two ways. If you're reading this on a mobile device, you'll get a table with average frame-rate and lowest one per cent measurements. However, if you're on a desktop or laptop, you get the full-blooded Digital Foundry experience. Play the YouTube videos to see frame-rate and frame-time metrics running in parallel to the video (you can even navigate around the video with the graphs adjusting to match). Beneath that you'll see our barcharts, dynamically generated from the frame-time metrics - mouse over for various stats and press the mouse button to swap over to the more useful percentage differentials.

We use FCAT for analysing GPU performance. This program adds a coloured border to each rendered frame, so that when the video feed from the GPU is captured and fed into our own bespoke software, each distinct frame is able to be distinguished and frame-times can be calculated. The high-definition captures are distilled down into much lighter text files with all the critical information, which are then used to dynamically generate the data presented on this page.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

Rise of the Tomb Raider is our next title. This Foundation engine title shows the massive gap in performance possible from the RX 5600 XT when compared to the more affordable RX 5500 XT. We're looking at a difference of nearly 40 per cent, rising to nearly 50 per cent for the overclocked BIOS. AMD's middle child also performs well against its Nvidia counterparts, claiming a 20 per cent lead over the GTX 1660 Super and a 14 per cent lead over the GTX 1660 Ti. It's only when the RTX 2060 arrives on the scene that Nvidia has an answer, with the recently discounted card outpacing the stock card by a couple of frames per second. However, the RX 5600 XT OC still leads the RTX 2060 by four per cent, showing the strength of AMD's design in this title at 1080p.

1440p also results in highly playable frame-rates, even given how much more challenging the full game is than the canned benchmark we're running here. The RX 5600 XT manages 80fps, just 2fps behind the RTX 2060, while the RX 5600 XT OC hits a solid 87fps to win the category fight. Meanwhile, the best GTX 16-series card only hits the upper sixties at this resolution.

Rise of the Tomb Raider: Very High, SMAA

  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT
  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT
  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

The Foundation engine's next showing is also accounted for in our benchmark suite with the excellent Shadow of the Tomb Raider. This more recent release performs at its best when given a modern graphics card, and the RX 5600 XT doesn't disappoint. The standard BIOS results in a 93fps average at 1080p, with the performance mode achieving a result we'll charitably round up to 100fps. By comparison, the GTX 1660 Ti and RTX 2060 manage only 83fps and 95fps, respectively. That works out to a 12 per cent lead for the RX 5600 XT over the GTX 1660 Ti and a five per cent lead for the RX 5600 XT OC over the RTX 2060.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider: Highest, TAA

  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT
  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT
  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT

The Witcher 3

The Witcher 3 is our final title, with all settings on their highest options apart from Nvidia-exclusive HairWorks, which is disabled. This game suffers from minor stutters or data streaming issues even on our overclocked Core i7 8700K, resulting in a few frame-time spikes over the course of the benchmark. The RX 5600 XT is among the best performer in this regard though, with the OC model achieving a lowest one per cent score of 85fps - about the same as the RX 5700 XT!

Looking at the more commonly used averages, and AMD's latest loses a little of its lustre. The RTX 2060 is the overall winner here, claiming a 116fps average at 1080p, with the 5600 XT close behind at 105fps and 108fps at its regular and OC specifications, respectively. That's an advantage of about seven per cent for the RTX 2060 over the best-performing RX 5600 series card. As usual, AMD's driver inefficiency at 1080p mean that this gap shrinks as resolution increases, with the gap sitting at five per cent at 1440p and just two per cent at 4K.

Witcher 3: Ultra, Post-AA, No Hairworks

  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT
  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT
  • GTX 1650 Super
  • GTX 1060
  • GTX 1070
  • GTX 1660
  • GTX 1660 Super
  • GTX 1660 Ti
  • RTX 2060
  • RX 580
  • RX 590
  • RX 5500 XT 4GB
  • RX 5500 XT 8GB
  • RX 5600 XT
  • RX 5600 XT OC
  • Vega 56
  • RX 5700
  • RX 5700 XT

AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT Analysis

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About the author

Will Judd

Will Judd

Senior Staff Writer, Digital Foundry

A bizarre British-American hybrid, Will turns caffeine into technology articles through a little-known process called 'writing'. His favourite games are Counter-Strike, StarCraft and Fallout 2.

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