Skip to main content

AMD Encourages Radeon RX 5600 XT Owners To Upgrade Memory To 14 Gbps

Radeon RX 5600 XT

Radeon RX 5600 XT (Image credit: AMD)

Graphics card manufacturers have been releasing new firmwares that upgrade the Radeon RX 5600 XT's memory speed from 12 Gbps to 14 Gbps. Finally, AMD has officially started promoting the upgrade to existing Radeon RX 5600 XT owners.

The Radeon RX 5600 XT was originally scheduled to debut with 12 Gbps memory. Just a few days before launch day, AMD mysteriously pushed out an updated firmware to its partners that raises the graphics card's TBP (typical board power) and memory speed. Nvidia was also slashing the GeForce RTX 2060's prices at that time, so AMD's move was believed to offset Nvidia's price cuts.

Various manufacturers have resorted to launching updated Radeon RX 5600 XT models that already have their memory running at 14 Gbps right out of the box. But if luck has it that you picked up or own one of the previous 12 Gbps models, you can manually upgrade the graphics card's firmware to enable the faster memory.

ManufacturerModelPart Number14 Gbps Eligibility
ASRockRadeon RX 5600 XT Challenger D 6G OCRX5600XT CLD 6GOInstructions from ASRock
ASRockRadeon RX 5600 XT Phantom Gaming D2 6G OCRX5600XT PGD2 6GOInstructions from ASRock
ASRockRadeon RX 5600 XT Phantom Gaming D3 6G OCRX5600XT PGD3 6GOInstructions from ASRock
AsusTUF Gaming X3 Radeon RX 5600 XT EvoTUF 3-RX5600XT-O6G-EVO-GAMINGInstructions from Asus
AsusROG Strix Radeon RX 5600 XTROG-STRIX-RX5600XT-T6G-GAMINGAvailable at leading etailers
AsusTUF Gaming X3 Radeon RX 5600 XT EvoTUF 3-RX5600XT-T6G-EVO-GAMINGAvailable at leading etailers
GigabyteRadeon RX 5600 XT GAMING OC 6GGV-R56XTGAMING OC-6GDInstructions from Gigabyte
MSIRadeon RX 5600 XT Gaming XN/AInstructions from MSI
MSIRadeon RX 5600 XT GamingN/AInstructions from MSI
MSIRadeon RX 5600 XT Mech OCN/AInstructions from MSI
MSIRadeon RX 5600 XT MechN/AInstructions from MSI
PowerColorRed Dragon RX 5600 XT 6GB GDDR6AXRX 5600XT 6GBD6-3DHR/OCAvailable at leading etailers
PowerColorRed Devil RX 5600 XT 6GB GDDR6AXRX 5600XT 6GBD6-3DHE/OCAvailable at leading etailers
PowerColorRX 5600 XT 6GB GDDR6-14AXRX 5600XT 6GBD6-3DHV2/OCAvailable at leading etailers
SapphirePulse RX 5600 XT 6G GDDR6N/AAvailable at leading etailers
XFXRadeon RX 5600 XT THICC II ProRX-56XT6DF46Available at leading etailers
XFXRadeon RX 5600 XT THICC III ProRX-56XT6TF48Available at leading etailers
XFXRadeon RX 5600 XT THICC III UltraRX-56XT6TB48Available at leading etailers
  • kyletg
    I have the Gigabyte card...It can't last 5 minutes with the "Fast" new bios. Based on the AMD support forums, I'm not alone in this realization. Of course Gigabyte support wants me to try a new motherboard and new power supply as part of the trouble shooting process o_O
    Reply
  • InvalidError
    kyletg said:
    I have the Gigabyte card...It can't last 5 minutes with the "Fast" new bios. Based on the AMD support forums, I'm not alone in this realization.
    The joys of AMD making a launch-day product specifications change, not all manufacturers designed their models with sufficient headroom to accommodate the bump so it ends up with a bunch of people feeling screwed over and manufacturers having to deal with support and RMA costs.
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    Thing is, the EVGA 2060 KO can be found cheaper than an RX 5600XT, has more performance (or equal performance) than a 5600XT, has more features than a 5600XT, has much better drivers than the 5600XT...so why wouldn't you buy a 2060 KO? AMD's pricing structure for Navi is so FUBAR there's really no reason not to...
    Reply
  • cfbcfb
    Ah yes, the "mysterious" upgrade that came after Nvidia launched a faster card at the same price point. You didn't get a free boost, you were being artificially held back to fit a price/performance slot.

    Article also fails to mention that at least one card maker, MSI IIRC, put slower ram on their cards, out of spec, to save a couple of dollars. Those won't OC with stability.
    Reply
  • spongiemaster
    cfbcfb said:
    Article also fails to mention that at least one card maker, MSI IIRC, put slower ram on their cards, out of spec, to save a couple of dollars. Those won't OC with stability.

    The memory and the GPU are shipped as a package from AMD to the board partners, so there is no way for an AIB to "cheap out" on the RAM.
    Reply
  • Deicidium369
    spongiemaster said:
    The memory and the GPU are shipped as a package from AMD to the board partners, so there is no way for an AIB to "cheap out" on the RAM.
    Why would you think that they are shipped as a package? EVGA regularly uses components out of spec - and some people view them as a top tier manufacturer, rather than a bargain basement product.
    Reply
  • cfbcfb
    spongiemaster said:
    The memory and the GPU are shipped as a package from AMD to the board partners, so there is no way for an AIB to "cheap out" on the RAM.

    Eh...whoops....facts.

    https://techreport.com/news/3468208/msi-rx-5600-xt-15-gbps-memory-speed/

    "MSI is reticent to drop this update on all its cards, though; AMD specced the GDDR6 memory onboard the RX 5600 XT to run at 12 Gbps, and that the update could cause more RMAs for consumers. "

    So no, AMD doesn't provide/ship anything other than the gpu, manufacturer chooses the dram and MSI cheaped out. Other, specifically small form factor 5600XT's can't do it either, as their cooling solutions called for the slower, cooler ram speed.
    Reply
  • spongiemaster
    Deicidium369 said:
    Why would you think that they are shipped as a package? EVGA regularly uses components out of spec - and some people view them as a top tier manufacturer, rather than a bargain basement product.
    When these card were released, GamerNexus interviewed some board partners off the record about what they thought about the last minute spec change. One of the board partners stated that AMD ships the RAM and GPU as a package.
    Reply
  • cryoburner
    Alvar Miles Udell said:
    Thing is, the EVGA 2060 KO can be found cheaper than an RX 5600XT, has more performance (or equal performance) than a 5600XT, has more features than a 5600XT, has much better drivers than the 5600XT...so why wouldn't you buy a 2060 KO? AMD's pricing structure for Navi is so FUBAR there's really no reason not to...
    I'm not sure where you are seeing those prices, but the lowest-priced 2060 listed on PCPartPicker in the US currently starts at $300, while the lowest-priced 5600 XT starts at $260. That 2060 is priced around 15% higher, not less, and that goes when comparing the more premium models as well. It's also possible to get a 5700 for around the same price as a 2060, a card that's on average around 10% faster, and offers more VRAM. Sure, the 2060 offers a few additional features, but you are either paying extra or trading some performance for them.

    I would, however, agree that the 5600 XT launch could have been handled better. Rather than having a last-minute BIOS update to increase stock performance, it might have arguably been better to simply leave performance the same and cut the price a bit. At the $280 suggested price, that leaves a rather large price and performance gap between the 5600 XT and AMD's next cards down, priced in the sub-$200 range. There's nothing to directly compete with the $230 1660 SUPER, a card that already made the 1660 Ti mostly redundant. The updated 5600 XT is roughly 50% faster than the 5500 XT, 580 and 590, but only about 10% behind the 5700. At the original clocks and a $250 launch price, it would have filled that gap much more effectively, especially since some models of the 5700 were already priced not much over $300.

    I do get the impression that limited 7nm production might be holding AMD back from being more competitive though, perhaps limiting how low it makes sense to go in terms of pricing on these cards, as they are making their CPUs, GPUs and console APUs all on this node. I suspect they make significantly more profit per 7nm wafer off their CPUs, where up to an 8-core processor requires just a tiny 75 mm2 chiplet, and two of those at a combined 150 mm2 are enough for their 12 and 16-core parts. Sure, there's an additional 12nm IO chip that goes into the CPUs, but there are far more components, including things like GDDR6 VRAM and lots of other parts going into a graphics card, so the margins there have to be far lower. The size of the chip used for even a 5500 XT is over 150 mm2, requiring a similar amount of space on a 7nm wafer as the chiplets used for a $720 Ryzen 3950X or a $430 3900X. The 5600 XT, 5700 and 5700 XT use a chip that is over 250 mm2, not all that far behind the combined area of the chiplets used for AMD's 24 and 32-core Threadripper and Epyc parts. And of course, they are obligated to fulfill orders for those large console processors, also being made on 7nm. So, AMD probably doesn't care all that much about being super-competitive in the desktop GPU space at the moment.
    Reply
  • gg83
    Gamer's Nexus has a nice video about AMD and the ram speed. why some, MSI in particular shipped cards with the 12Gbps because of cost. pretty interesting story.
    Reply