Stepping down to 1440p helps AMD's GPUs, as the Infinity Cache hit rate improves, and thus the effective memory bandwidth goes up. At the same time, CPU bottlenecks start to factor in as well. Overall, the Sapphire RX 6950 XT performed 3% faster than the Asus RTX 3090 Ti, and 9% faster than the RX 6900 XT reference card.
In the individual game results, Nvidia claimed a few victories, with Flight Simulator, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Total War: Warhammer 3 favoring the 3090 Ti by 6% to 21%. Nvidia could also get another 10%–20% with DLSS Quality mode in the games that support it, but AMD gets the win at native rendering.
Ray tracing once again punishes AMD's RDNA 2 architecture. It does hang on to sixth place, even with the 3070 and 3070 Ti now in the mix, but the RTX 3080 and above all take a decent lead, with the RTX 3090 Ti delivering a 55% advantage. Of course, the RTX 3080 Ti and above also cost more than the RX 6950 XT, so there's that. But if you care about complex ray tracing in games, the RTX 3080 and RTX 3080 12GB are a much better choice than any of AMD's current generation GPUs.
Turning to the individual game charts again, the RX 6950 XT now breaks 30 fps in nearly all of the games, Cyberpunk 2077 being the sole exception — and it has FSR support to get you there if you want. That makes DXR technically playable at 1440p, though it's not a great experience for the most part. Minimums still dipped well below 30 fps as well in several of the games.
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I'm a bit puzzled with these refreshes... AMD wants just a little bit more money for them with equally little bit of extra performance, but in the case of the 6950XT and 6750XT, they are not replacing the "equivalent" card, so the potential "value" crumbles down horrendously. The 6650XT is a strange bug as it is meant to replace the 6600XT in the stack (or so I've read/seen) which, fair enough, seems like an "equivalent" replacement, maybe marginally better; just maybe. And still, overall, they don't seem like a refresh that had any significance of being launched right at this time.
The only silver lining I can totally see is the 6900XT and 6800XT going down the price stack significantly, maybe even pushing the already great 6800 closer to the 6750XT, making the latter completely pointless! Well, maybe not quite, but I'd say the 6800 is the go-get card in that price range if the prices adjust downward for the 6800. I wonder if this will push nVidia prices down? Historically it hasn't been the case, but maybe there's still a chance. I mention it, because the 3060ti is the sweet spot of this gen IMO, but if the 6800 goes down in price a bit more, its supremacy will be challenged. We all win regardless xD
Anyway, puzzling release to say the least after seeing the performance of the cards.
If you have the option to buy a 3070, 3060ti, 6750XT or a 6800 at around the same price, I'd be willing to say* rational thinkers would take the 6800.
It does not matter how good a product is if you can't buy it.
I will agree with the 6800 is going to become really scarce now, maybe more than before, when it drops further in price if it gets squeezed from above.
All in all, I find it strange you said it's the least sold card form the line up. I would say the 6700XT is the least sold? I've never seen it out of stock xD
RX 6700 XT: $500
RX 6750 XT: $550
RX 6800: $760
RX 6800 XT: $800
RX 6900 XT: $950
RX 6950 XT: $1,100 (but sold out everywhere)
In terms of performance, the RX 6800 is 25-30% faster than the RX 6700 XT, because it has 50% more CUs and 33% more memory and memory bandwidth. Again, if it were in stock at the $580 MSRP, it would be quite compelling, but when the 6800 XT is only $40 more it's the better choice: 5% more money for 15% more performance.
Based on sales on eBay, the RX 6700 XT has been one of AMD's most popular RDNA 2 GPUs. In the past year, nearly 10,000 have been sold on eBay, compared to only 2,250 RX 6800 cards, 3,700 RX 6800 XT cards, and 2,800 RX 6900 XT cards. The 6600 XT is catching up, having sold over 6,300 since launch, but it hasn't gotten there yet. I know eBay isn't the retail market, but that's as good as I can do with the data that's out there.
Alternatively, the Steam Hardware Survey (DirectX 12 API page) shows 0.30% for the RX 6600 XT, 0.25% for the 6700 XT, 0.15% for the 6900 XT and RX 6600, 0.13% for the RX 6800 XT, 0.09% on the 6500 XT, and 0.05% for the RX 6800. So in that case the 6600 XT has surpassed the 6700 XT in total sales to gamers, maybe.
I don't think AMD will totally halt RX 6800 sales, but it has always been a GPU that only exists to take care of yields. If a Navi 21 isn't at least 90% functional on the CUs, and fully functional on the cache and memory controllers, it can't be sold as a 6800 XT. I do wonder if some Navi 21 chips end up as RX 6700 / RX 6750 XT, just because there will inevitably be flaws in the Infinity Cache or memory controllers. But perhaps AMD just doesn't bother with such chips.
As for the Steam Survey. I mentioned this in the news report where the 6900XT finally appeared in it. I've had it for a good while now and I've never seen the Steam Survey pop. Same with my laptop and its 6800M. I've swapped my CPU 3 times now and I've only been survey'd once; before I even got my Vega64 to replace my RX480. All of this to just point out and reinforce the point that the Steam Survey is weird.
Interesting information none the less, so thanks for it.
Well, at least I hope this will help push the price down even more.