Sash gets Navi.
So, you know I did a thing? Well I bet you've already figured out what it is now, from the title. :D I won't mess around, instead I will get straight to the point here.
That's a Reference (Yes, I know) Radeon RX 5700. The Non-XT version. Now, I've wanted to test Navi for a while, and it took my latest Hardware Impulse for me to actually get my hands on one. This is "Navi 10" 'PRO', in that it has four Compute Units disabled (Actually, two Dual-Compute Units with RDNA). The rest of the processor remains fully functional, and clock speed and power limit represent the lion's share of the performance delta. Anyway, I'll go into the specs when I make a Hardware Profile for this guy.
I also plan to test the "Navi 10" GPU extensively, including adding to my Geometry Performance tests. "Navi 10" apparently has some working implementation of the fabled Primitive Shader that Vega (GCN5) was suppose to have. In that, this RDNA 1st generation chip can take in 8 triangles and spit out 4 rasterised ones, that's the same triangle out as the other major GCN GPUs before it, but the important part is here, it can cull 50% of triangles in, very quickly using the Primitive Shader (It's also likely that "Navi 10" has some form of Primitive Discard Acelerator also enabled). So that means in a given scene, the RDNA chip is likely having to draw vastly fewer degenerate (invisible) geometry. But, anyway...
You got a reference blower? You're an idiot! I hate you!
:O I don't need to justify myself on the internet, but the blower appealed to me for a few reasons, the main ones are the fact that I absolutely love the reference shroud (Just look at it!) for the 5700, non XT. I don't mind the XT version's shroud but I prefer this one. It's industrial, it's clean. And to me, it says "I'm here to process graphics". It doesn't care about RGB, illuminated LEDs or fancy "Leet Gaming" frills or branding. This card is built for one purpose: Spitting out Pixels. Yes, I also loved the reference RX Vega 56/64 shrouds, and the R9 Fury X's Liquid cooler before that. AMD nailed the aethstetic for me, here.
Secondly, my system is quite compact, it's Micro ATX and I am using a Soundcard and planning to add an M.2 -> PCIe adapter card, later. These are going to be connected above the GPU (My case is reversed orientation), and would actually block more than half of the intakes of an open-air design, and wouldn't even fit if the card wasn't absolutely dual-slot. In that case, the blower (left entirely at stock, no overclocking here) might even be quieter. But it certainly won't dump its heat onto my new Gen4 NVME SDD that's going to be sat right next to it.
Wait, did I just say Gen4 NVME SSD? Yes. I did. Um, so yes, I am building a Micro ATX X570 system with a Ryzen 7 3700X, and the RX 5700. Those parts arrive next week. So the blower won't heat up my case which is designed for positive pressure, and honestly; the 5700 non XT is pretty efficient so it won't be as bad.
Thirdly, it was cheap. I got this card for £319.99. That was cheap enough to just about fit under what I would consider "too much" for a card that can't do fast DXR (or any DXR, right now).
Anyway, I'm going to be testing the RX 5700 in my B450 machine with the Ryzen 5 3400G as the CPU (lol what a combination) until my new X570 machine is set up next week.
Wait, what about the RTX 2060 SUPER? What about RTX?
Oh yeah, about that. Well, I won't lie. I sold the card, but not because I wasn't happy with it, but because I already tested RTX in the game I wanted to play so badly, and it was time to move on to the next bit of hardware. In fact the sale of that card helped me a lot to get the new parts. So there's that :D I also sold my old RX 590 and the RX 570 (I plan to get another fully enabled Polaris 10/20/30 card shortly, however, 2nd hand and cheap in order to do some tests with the 5700, they both have 2304 shading units, go figure. Although the Navi part has twice the pixel pipelines, there are ways of shifting the bottleneck away from the backend).
Oh, I also sold my Trusty Ryzen 7 2700X. Yes, I know it's the 50th AE, but I've been there and got the T-shirt (Literally, by the way), and it must be sold in order to allow me to test new tech!
Anyway, I've not given up on RTX (DXR), and next year, I plan to invest in a new GPU with DXR capabilities, probably a Radeon, if they have DXR by then - which honestly I think they will, if not, I'll be back to Team Green in a Ray-Traced flash. :)
Radeon Master Race
That's right baby, it's like I never left!