Radeon RX 590 vs. RX 580 vs. GeForce GTX 1060

Today we test the new Radeon RX 590 and have the XFX Radeon RX 590 & # 39; Fatboy & # 39; at hand. Technically, this is a new GPU, but not new at the same time. What we have here is Polaris 20 XT in the 12nm FinFET process, and this little change results in slightly better clock speeds.

There are no additional stream processors, no failed GDDR6 memory, or even GDDR5X memory. Basically, we get the same RX 580 with 15% overclocking, at least when we compare the reference clock rates. However, since most entry-level RX 580 models are clocked at 1380 to 1410 MHz, the RX 590 immediately offers a clock frequency advantage of 10-12%. Then there are the high-end models like the Gigabyte Aorus RX 580 XTR that we use for testing, and this special model is clocked at 1425 MHz, reducing the clock speed advantage of the RX 590 to 8%.

It is important to clarify this context as we found it misleading to test comparing the RX 590 with a base model RX 580 using the AMD reference clocks. AMD spoiled this launch by rating the RX 590 at $ 280. This is a significant premium for this slightly overclocked RX 580. Meanwhile, the RX 580 costs around $ 230 (MSRP) and is currently available for only $ 200.

AMD claims an increase in performance of up to 12% over a reference clocked RX 580, but believes that this means that the MSRP can be increased by 22%. Depending on the position, this should be interesting or annoying.

We use the XFX Radeon RX 590 Fatboy for testing and it is compared with the Gigabyte Aorus RX 580 XTR and the MSI GeForce GTX 1060 Gaming X +. We couldn't test the usual large GPU battery for this test, so you'll find that no cheaper models like the RX 570 and 3GB GTX 1060 are available, even though we recorded as many results as possible. However, if you don't mind extrapolating, previous tests will give you a lot of direct GPU comparisons if you wish (RX 590 of course excluded).

Our benchmarks were run with a Core i7-8700K with 5 GHz and 32 GB Vengeance DDR4-3400 memory. Overall, we have results for 21 games with two resolutions, 1080p and 1440p, but the commentary will focus on 7 of the recently released titles.


First, we have Battlefield V results (don't miss our last RTX ray tracing test!) And here the XFX 590 was 7% faster than the Aorus 580 XTR and has an average frame rate of 85 fps to 91 fps. This is the kind of margin we expected, although this difference narrowed to only 3% at 1440p. On a positive note, the RX 590 was 20% faster than our GTX 1060 card.

Strange brigade results at 1080p have shown that the RX 590 performs 5% faster than the 580 and 16% faster than the GTX 1060. At 1440p we see the same 5% margin, here the 590 delivered an additional 3 fps over the Aorus RX 580 XTR, not exactly exciting stuff is it?

The Assassin’s Creed series has been somewhat brutal for AMD lately and Odyssey is no different. Here the 580 and 590 are easily beaten by the GTX 1060 with 1080p. We find a similar story at 1440p. The RX 590 was 7% slower than the GTX 1060 and only 6% faster than the 580, which is two additional frames.

This is our first benchmarking with Hitman 2 … too bad that it is not a more exciting occasion. Here the RX 590 offered a 5% increase in performance over the 580, meaning that it was 11% faster than the 1060 at 1080p. At 1440p, the distance between 580 and 590 is reduced to just 2 fps, which is a performance advantage of 4% compared to the 590.

Another 5% increase in performance can be seen in Shadow of the Tomb Raider, which averages 63 fps compared to the 60 fps of the 580.

At 1440p, we only see a single frame advantage for the 590, which was 14% faster than the GTX 1060.

Forza Horizon 4 played very well on the RX 590 with 1080p because the frame rates never dropped below 80 fps. Strangely, we saw a 10% increase in performance at 1440p. I suspect you would see more double-digit gains with a reference of 580, and I will examine this in a moment.

Of the 21 games we've tested, the last one we're going to discuss is Monster Hunter World. At 1080p we see another non-exciting performance increase of 4% over the 580, although the 590 was 10% faster than the GTX 1060. At 1440p we see a single additional frame and I don't know anything about you, but that's all about the individual Digits that I can handle in a review.


Overclocking the XFX Fatboy brought us a core clock speed of 1620 MHz with a GDDR5 memory frequency of 2250 MHz, which resulted in a transmission speed of 9 Gbit / s. This increased the performance of Battlefield V 1080p by 4% with similar increases at 1440p.

You will find that the Aorus RX 580 XTR is a performance-hungry 580 model that consumes ~ 10% more power than a standard 580. Still, we see that the XFX RX 590 slightly increases overall system consumption, which resulted in a 42% increase over the GTX 1060 configuration, which is no small difference.

Realistically, your power supply has no problem with this increase, and you won't notice it on the utility bill unless you play around the clock. The only real problem is the extra heat given off in your case. If you have a well-ventilated case, this is less of a problem, but for budget setups, this will heat things up.

Operating temperatures

For an hour under load, the XFX Radeon RX 590 Fatboy reached a maximum of 79 degrees, which is reasonable, but also starts to climb there. The good news is that it was relatively quiet at this temperature as the fans only spun at up to 1380rpm.

Overclocking actually lowered the temperature to 78 degrees, since the fans were now spinning at up to 1600 rpm and could be heard here through the case fans. The operating volume was not unacceptably loud and certainly nothing like a Vega reference card.

All together, cost per frame

The Radeon RX 580 takes first place with a country mile. You can currently buy 8GB models for $ 200, which is a great buy. Not so long ago, players would have sacrificed a finger for such a price on a mid-range graphics card.

The GTX 1060 is also below the MSRP, although the 9 Gbps models will likely cost a little more. Honestly, they're mostly a gimmick, we've never seen a big performance boost over the standard models. In any case, the RX 580 costs 20% less per frame, so this is the obvious choice. The RX 590 is much less attractive at $ 280 and costs $ 4 per frame or 32% more expensive per frame. Instead, we'd rather spend $ 100 more and buy a GTX 1070 or the 1070 Ti.

In terms of performance, the Radeon RX 590 has never been exciting – a slightly overclocked RX 580 will only get you that far – but pricing has negated that offering. We just hope this is a situation where AMD introduces it at $ 280 and then lowers prices to $ 250 before the year is over. At $ 250, it's equivalent to the GTX 1060 and offers superior performance. Given AMD's current position in the GPU market, they have to offer compelling options, and that would be a $ 250 RX 590.

The RX 590 may consume more power and may not be ideal, but it makes up for it with a healthy ecosystem of affordable FreeSync monitors and an additional 2 GB of VRAM. However, as a mid-range value proposition, the biggest problem has to be sold alongside a $ 200 RX-580. The biggest problem that the RX-580 faces is the $ 150 RX-570.

The bottom line is that the RX 590 is not a bad product, it just has the wrong price tag. If you're on the market for a new graphics card this vacation, there are plenty of GPUs at great prices. This is a welcome change from a year ago.

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