Overclocking expert @Buildzoid1 on Twitter recently shared a post discussing his frustrations with AMD's overclocking capabilities on the RX 7000 series. Apparently, AMD has locked power play table manipulation on its new GPUs, preventing enthusiasts from customizing power and frequency curves outside their official specifications.
So apparently AMD hates overclocking so much that they decided to lock the power play tables on RX 7000. I guess my RTX 2080 will probably get replaced with another Nvidia GPU.December 23, 2022
Power play tables provide an alternative method of changing a GPU's clock speed, power, and voltage behavior through the Windows registry instead of a BIOS mod or a BIOS swap. This can be a safer way to run GPUs outside of their official limitations since it prevents any risk that might occur when flashing the BIOS.
If you are wondering why AMD's overclocking feature set in the Adrenalin software isn't good enough; adjusting power play tables - or manipulating the BIOS, has a couple of benefits. One is that users can bypass firmware-related limitations on the GPU hardware, and push the hardware as hard as it will go. Another is to optimize the voltage/frequency curve for better efficiency. Either way, it allows diehard overclockers and enthusiasts to tweak their GPU's behavior in an extremely detailed way that is not accessible with normal overclocking software.
Unfortunately, we don't know exactly why AMD has shut down power play manipulation on its Radeon RX 7000 GPUs, especially when its previous generation cards have this ability. But we might have a clue as to what's going on from an AMD engineer's who is on Reddit. According to a Reddit post discussing RX 7000's power consumption issues, user Falk_csgo asked about driver limitations related to GPU overclocking; AMD engineer AMD_PoolShark28 responded by saying "Architecturally RDNA3 has some changes to how PPTables are manipulated..."
At the very least, we now know that the way users can edit and access RX 7000's power play tables has been changed since the RX 6000 series. To speculate a bit, this is probably the reason why the power play tables were locked on RX 7000 series.
Hopefully, this means the power play table lockout is only temporary and AMD will restore access at some point. But we really don't know.