AMD Radeon RX 470 Review: Polaris Gets Even More Affordable

RX 470 Summary And Conclusion

Performance Summary: The ASUS Radeon RX 470 ROG STRIX card we tested performed very well throughout our entire battery of tests, especially considering its sub-$200 price point. As you can probably surmise from its model number, the Radeon RX 470’s performance fall in right behind the more powerful Radeon RX 480, but typically well ahead of the previous-gen Radeon R9 380X. In comparison to NVIDIA’s offerings, the Radeon RX 470 outpaced the GeForce GTX 960 and GTX 950 across the board, and even managed to sneak out in front of the GeForce GTX 970 on a couple of occasions. That said, it couldn't touch the new Pascal-based and much more expensive GeForce GTX 1060.

Simple tuning of the power and fan curves using WattMan (or ASUS’s own GPU Tweak II utility) resulted in some measurable performance gains, and overall power consumption is relatively low, though Polaris isn’t as nearly as power-efficient as NVIDIA’s Pascal architecture.

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The ASUS Radeon RX 470 ROG STRIX -- Find It At Amazon

AMD is positioning the Radeon RX 470 as an ideal fit for smooth, 1080p gaming, without making sacrifices on image quality. There will be cases where details can’t be cranked all the way up at 1080p, like in Ashes Of The Singularity to name one, but this card is definitely capable of playable framerates with high-image quality levels in taxing titles at 1080p, as evidenced by the >60 FPS put in Hitman and Thief, with all image quality settings cranked up.

If you’re in the market for an affordable graphics card, built around a modern GPU with strong DX12 support and all of the latest display output technologies, the AMD Radeon RX 470 should be on your short list of considerations. NVIDIA may tweak pricing on its mainstream GeForce GTX cards or may even have a Pascal-based GTX 1050 up its sleeve that could alter the landscape somewhat, but as it stands Radeon RX 470 is a great value for gamers looking for a graphics card in the $180 price range. If street pricing ends up settling somewhat higher, however, it makes sense to spend a few dollars more for something more powerful like the 4GB RX 480.

Update 8/5/2016: We've gotten a list of suggested prices for all of the partner Radeon RX 470 boards due to arrive.

Board  Model  SEP (USD)
Sapphire RX 470  SAPPHIRE NITRO RADEON RX 470 4G $209
Sapphire RX 470 RADEON RX 470 4G GDDR5 PCI-E HDMI / TRIPLE DP OC W/ BP $199
XFX RX 470 XFX RX 470 $189
XFX RX 470 XFX RX 470 RS $209
PowerColor RX 470 Red Devil 470 4GB $179
Asus RX 470 Strix-RX 470-04G-GAMING $199
Gigabyte RX 470 GV-RX 470G1 Gaming-4GD $199
MSI RX 470 Gaming RX 470 4GB OC $199

 At these suggested prices, it makes much more sense to pick up a 4GB Radeon RX 480 at $199, despite of some the extra features offered by the custom boards.

  • Good Value
  • Compact Design
  • Bleeding-Edge Features
  • Competitive Pricing
  • WattMan Overclocking Utility
  • Less Efficient Than RX 480
  • Power Consumption On Par With 2-Year Old Maxwell GPUs

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