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Early Radeon RX 6400 Review Reveals GTX 1650-Level Performance

XFX Speedster SWFT105 Radeon RX 6400
XFX Speedster SWFT105 Radeon RX 6400 (Image credit: XFX)

AMD released the Radeon RX 6400 today without much fanfare. Unfortunately, the Radeon RX 6400 may not have the necessary firepower to vie for a spot on the list of best graphics cards. However, Expreview took the XFX Speedster SWFT105 Radeon RX 6400 for a spin, and its review showed that the Radeon RX 6400 is a pretty good entry-level graphics card.

The XFX Speedster SWFT105 Radeon RX 6400 utilizes the Navi 24 silicon, a die that also powers AMD's Radeon RX 6500 XT. Unfortunately, the chipmaker only enabled 12 compute units on the one inside the Radeon RX 6400, so the graphics card only has access to 768 stream processors. AMD has used this configuration before in the shape of the AMD Radeon 680M, the iGPU that resides in the company's high-end Ryzen 6000 (Rembrandt) mobile APUs. However, that doesn't mean that the Radeon RX 6400 will perform like a Ryzen 6000 APU since the former has higher clock speeds and a more relaxed thermal limit.

The Radeon RX 6400 operates with a 1,923 MHz base clock, 2,039 MHz game clock, and 2,321 MHz boost clock. XFX's single-slot, half-height Speedster SWFT105 Radeon RX 6400 adheres to AMD's reference specification. The maximum boost clock for the Radeon 680M is 2,400 MHz, so it's a bit below the Radeon RX 6400. Furthermore, the Radeon RX 6400 has a 53W TDP, whereas Ryzen 6000 tops out at 45W for both the processing and iGPU components. Given its lower power requirement, the Radeon RX 6400 gets all the juice from the PCIe expansion slot, so no external power connectors are required. As a result, it's an excellent design for users with old systems that need a fast upgrade.

The Radeon RX 6400 has 4GB of 16 Gbps GDDR6 memory; therefore, it won't perform well above 1080p (1920 x 1080) with demanding image fidelity. Like the Radeon RX 6500 XT, the Radeon RX 6400 sticks to a PCIe 4.0 x4 interface and lacks 4K H.264/H.265 encoding and AV1 decoding capabilities.

Radeon RX 6400 Benchmarks

Graphics CardWar ThunderFinal Fantasy XIVWorld of Tanks enCoreDota 2Far Cry 5Assassin's Creed OriginsGears 5Dirt 5Far Cry 6Metro ExodusWatch Dogs: Legion
Radeon RX 6500 XT190.384.9116.4152.7835264.529.85137.627
Radeon RX 6400139.468.083.1149.7624257.422.74028.423
GeForce GTX 1650131.965.680.0148.0574856.633.54428.322
Ryzen 7 5700G59.527.2N/A79.3282225.716.92013.6412

Expreview's test platform consisted of the Ryzen 7 5700G, MSI MPG X570S Carbon Max WiFi motherboard, and 32GB (2x16B) of DDR4-3600 memory. The news outlet did its testing at 1080p with the highest graphic preset but disabled ray tracing and FSR.

The results showed that the Radeon RX 6400 had no problems with older titles, such as Far Cry 5, Assassin's Creed Origins, or Gears 5. However, the Radeon RX 6400 struggled in some more recent games and those heavily reliant on memory. Remember that Expreview used the highest image settings, so lowering the eye candy can bring users a smoother gaming performance.

Cumulatively, the Radeon RX 6400 performed in the same ballpark as the GeForce GTX 1650. The Navi 24 graphics card beat its Turing rival in eight out of the 11 titles that Expreview used; however, the performance margins weren't very significant.

The Radeon RX 6500 XT has 33% more stream processors than the Radeon RX 6400. Nonetheless, the Radeon RX 6500 XT was approximately 24% faster than the Radeon RX 6400. For those curious about how the Radeon RX 6400 stacks up against integrated graphics, the Navi 24 delivered over two times higher performance than the Ryzen 7 5700G. However, it's important to emphasize that the Ryzen 7 5700G is still on AMD's hoary Vega graphics engine. As a result, the chipmaker hasn't brought its RDNA 2 graphics to a desktop APU.

Like the Radeon RX 6400, entry-level graphics cards benefit immensely from AMD's FidelityFX Super Resolution (FSR) technology. Coming back to Far Cry 6, the Radeon RX 6400 averaged 40 FPS without any help. Enabling FSR on the performance setting upped the average frame rate to 71 FPS, while the balanced setting pulled in 68 FPS. The quality and ultra quality settings netted the Radeon RX 6400 uplifts to 61 and 56 FPS, respectively. FSR gave the Radeon RX 6400 a nice 40% boost in frame rate even at the highest FSR setting.

We can see the Radeon RX 6400 succeeding in the current state of the graphics card market. Custom models are in stock and start at $159. whereas even that cheapest GeForce GTX 1650 retails for $220.

Zhiye Liu
Zhiye Liu

Zhiye Liu is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.

  • logainofhades
    I'd rather have the 1650. At least it can live on as an HTPC card, and not get hamstrung by the x4 bus, on gen 3 systems.
    Reply
  • drtweak
    Probably beats the FPS out of my 4GB GTX 960 tho XD
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    drtweak said:
    Probably beats the FPS out of my 4GB GTX 960 tho XD

    Maybe if it is in a gen 4 capable rig. Gen 3, I doubt it will fare so well. Your GTX 960 is pretty close to 1050ti performance. The 6500xt matches the GTX 1650, on a 3.0 bus. The 6400 is going to be even worse. You might be even, at best.

    https://static.techspot.com/articles-info/2398/bench/Average.png
    Reply
  • King_V
    Any indication as to whether the GTX 1650 being referenced is a GDDR5 or a GDDR6 version?

    Aside from that, slightly better performance for less than 3/4 the price, and with lower power consumption, sounds pretty darn good for a budget card.

    Of course, I don't consider the RX 6400 and GTX 1650 to really be $160 and $220 cards, respectively, anyway, but, that's the market we live in right now.
    Reply
  • -Fran-
    Ah... Just imagine a world where AMD made the sensible decision of making the full Navi 24 die without a power plug, slim, single bracket and at $170 MSRP instead! And call that RX6500 (wink wink, AMD, wink wink) for everyone looking for either a stop-gap, a low priced able-to-game-some card then let AIBs to just make OC'ed versions for $200+ instead.

    I'm pretty sure they would've saved themselves all the bad press and instead they would have been praised somewhat for filling the under-200 MSRP slot with something that's not vapor fumes and can actually run games.

    There's plenty OEM systems out there begging for such a card and not the RX6400. Alas, this is what AMD could come up with instead. Sadge.

    Regards.
    Reply
  • watzupken
    -Fran- said:
    Ah... Just imagine a world where AMD made the sensible decision of making the full Navi 24 die without a power plug, slim, single bracket and at $170 MSRP instead! And call that RX6500 (wink wink, AMD, wink wink) for everyone looking for either a stop-gap, a low priced able-to-game-some card then let AIBs to just make OC'ed versions for $200+ instead.

    I'm pretty sure they would've saved themselves all the bad press and instead they would have been praised somewhat for filling the under-200 MSRP slot with something that's not vapor fumes and can actually run games.

    There's plenty OEM systems out there begging for such a card and not the RX6400. Alas, this is what AMD could come up with instead. Sadge.

    Regards.
    My understanding is that the RX 6500 XT is using the full Navi 24 die. The problems stem from the poorly intended design of the chip, i.e. lack of video encoding/ decoding, lack of # of display out, lack of PCI-E bus, lack of cache/ VRAM, etc. So no matter what they do to it now, it does not matter. These will probably sell decently well to OEMs. It runs well on PCI-E 4.0 x4, but considering this sorts of entry level GPUs are targeting budget gamers, I don’t really think PCI-E 4.0 is all that common at this point in time in a budget gaming system. If it performs close or worst than a GTX 1650, I rather buy the Nvidia card since performance is not worst, and it is a better featured card despite its age.
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    Yea AMD cut too many corners, on these chips. They need to be at least an x8 bus, and have the video encoding/decoding features. I could live with the 2 outputs.
    Reply
  • -Fran-
    watzupken said:
    My understanding is that the RX 6500 XT is using the full Navi 24 die. The problems stem from the poorly intended design of the chip, i.e. lack of video encoding/ decoding, lack of # of display out, lack of PCI-E bus, lack of cache/ VRAM, etc. So no matter what they do to it now, it does not matter. These will probably sell decently well to OEMs. It runs well on PCI-E 4.0 x4, but considering this sorts of entry level GPUs are targeting budget gamers, I don’t really think PCI-E 4.0 is all that common at this point in time in a budget gaming system. If it performs close or worst than a GTX 1650, I rather buy the Nvidia card since performance is not worst, and it is a better featured card despite its age.
    Everyone is over-abusing the "but why no one thinks of the children PCIe3 owners". Both AMD and Intel have PCIe4 now for new systems and while not ideal to have x4, it is serviceable and with just 4GB, this is a bottom of the barrel card. As for the decoding and encoding. I can agree on the decoding, but not the encoding. Bottom of the barrel systems just won't do a good job at streaming no matter the built-in encoding on the GPU; you'll still need to drop down quality and resolution of either the stream, game or both. Plus, chances are a bottom of the barrel system is using an iGPU and most, if not all, have encoding support on both Intel and AMD. As for the AV1 decoding, no excuses there for AMD as that is a hard miss. It does have H264 and H265 decoding though, I think?

    I'm not saying this card is better than one or another either, but AMD could have made a much better argument for it; that's all. It is still a "bottom of the barrel" GPU and it shows. Also, if you need to game and your only choices are used cards and this for a new PC, what will you choose? I mean, the writing is on the wall for this one, since the fiercest competition of this card is used hardware more than anything new anyway. Keep in mind it is alone in this price range as new hardware.

    Regards.
    Reply
  • logainofhades
    Many AMD users are on 300/400 series boards. Intel didn't add Gen 4 till 11 gen with 500 series chipset. The majority of people are going to still be on Gen 3.
    Reply
  • FullOfIt
    logainofhades said:
    Maybe if it is in a gen 4 capable rig. Gen 3, I doubt it will fare so well. Your GTX 960 is pretty close to 1050ti performance. The 6500xt matches the GTX 1650, on a 3.0 bus. The 6400 is going to be even worse. You might be even, at best.

    https://static.techspot.com/articles-info/2398/bench/Average.png
    A 1050Ti is a full tier above the 960, the 960 was pretty much identical to the 1050 non Ti, which makes the 1050Ti at least 20% faster than the 960.
    Reply