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Radeon RX 5700/ RX 5700 XT: performance analysis

Rise/ Shadow of the Tomb Raider, The Witcher 3

Our tests continue with our final trio of games: 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 solid state storage. A Gamer Storm Castle 240mm all-in-one 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 simple table with average frame-rate and lowest one per cent measurements, giving you a quick way to see how fast each GPU is in each game we tested. However, if you're on a desktop or laptop, you get our results as we truly intended, with live frame-rate and frame-time stats running once you hit play on the YouTube video of our test scene. Beneath that you'll see our barcharts, which are dynamically generated from the frame-time metrics. Remember that you can mouse over the charts and press the mouse button to swap over to the more useful percentage differentials.

We use FCAT for analysing GPU performance. A coloured border is overlaid in each rendered frame, the video feed from the GPU is captured and the files are then scanned with our own proprietary software. The captures are distilled down into text files which are used to dynamically generate the data presented on this page.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

Another DirectX 12 test, Rise of the Tomb Raider should offer AMD's Navi cards another opportunity to turn in a good result - and thankfully, Team Red delivers. The RX 5700 does better in its matchup than its bigger brother, coming within two per cent of the $50 more expensive RTX 2060 Super at 1440p; the advantage for the 2070 Super over the 5700 XT is eight per cent at the same resolution. As we've seen in earlier tests, the original 2060 and 2070 models are bested by the new Navi cards by up to 10 per cent, making them the obvious value champs.

Rise of the Tomb Raider: Very High, SMAA

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is a more challenging DirectX 12 title and its three-part benchmark is also a more realistic simulation of actual gameplay - but how does that translate into performance? At 1440p, the RTX 2060 Super leads the RX 5700 by four per cent; the RTX 2070 Super has a more extensive lead over the RX 5700 XT at nine per cent but remember this card does cost $100 more. The RTX 2060 doesn't perform well here, coming 14 per cent behind the RX 5700, but the RTX 2070 manages to stay in a dead heat with the RX 5700 XT. At 4K, it's a similar situation: the RX 5700 is second-fastest in its category but the RX 5700 XT lies behind both the RTX 2070 and RTX 2070 XT.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider: Highest, TAA

The Witcher 3

Our final test for the RX 5700 series based on our existing benchmark suite is one of the best RPGs of the last decade, The Witcher 3. The game runs best on Nvidia hardware according to our testing - at least as long as the performance-sapping Hairworks effect is turned off. The RX 5700 is able to beat out the RTX 2060 at 1440p, but the RX 5700 XT sadly falls behind both RTX 2070 models. The RTX 2060S and RTX 2070S lead the RX 5700 and RX 5700 XT by about five and 10 per cent at all resolutions, but do cost more. At the revised price points, Navi's 5700 and 5700 XT deliver a small but decent win against RTX 2060 and 2060 Super.

Witcher 3: Ultra, Post-AA, No Hairworks

AMD Radeon 5700/ Radeon RX 5700 XT Analysis

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About the Author

Will Judd avatar

Will Judd

Deputy Editor, 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. Will also tweets the latest tech deals at @DealsFoundry.


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