Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 6700 XT review: Performance-boosting Trixx

The Nitro+ punches above its class thanks to Sapphire's killer Trixx Boost software.

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Gears Tactics

Gears Tactics puts it own brutal, fast-paced spin on the XCOM-like genre. This Unreal Engine 4-powered game was built from the ground up for DirectX 12, and we love being able to work a tactics-style game into our benchmarking suite. Better yet, the game comes with a plethora of graphics options for PC snobs. More games should devote such loving care to explaining what flipping all these visual knobs mean.

You can’t use the presets to benchmark Gears Tactics, as it intelligently scales to work best on your installed hardware, meaning that “Ultra” on one graphics card can load different settings than “Ultra” on a weaker card. We manually set all options to their highest possible settings.

gears Brad Chacos/IDG

Wolfenstein: Youngblood

Wolfenstein: Youngblood is more fun when you can play cooperatively with a buddy, but it’s a fearless experiment—and an absolute technical showcase. Running on the Vulkan API, Youngblood achieves blistering frame rates, and it supports all sorts of cutting-edge technologies like ray tracing, DLSS 2.0, HDR, GPU culling, asynchronous computing, and Nvidia’s Content Adaptive Shading. The game includes a built-in benchmark with two different scenes; we tested Riverside.

wolf Brad Chacos/IDG

Metro Exodus

One of the best games of 2019, Metro Exodus remains one of the best-looking games around, too. The latest version of the 4A Engine provides incredibly luscious, ultra-detailed visuals, with one of the most stunning real-time ray tracing implementations released yet. The Extreme graphics preset we benchmark can melt even the most powerful modern hardware, as you’ll see below, though the game’s Ultra and High presets still look good at much higher frame rates.

We test in DirectX 12 mode with ray tracing, Hairworks, and DLSS disabled.

metro Brad Chacos/IDG

Borderlands 3

Borderlands is back! Gearbox’s game defaults to DX12, so we do as well. It gives us a glimpse at the ultra-popular Unreal Engine 4’s performance in a traditional shooter. This game tends to favor AMD hardware.

borderlands Brad Chacos/IDG

Strange Brigade

Strange Brigade is a cooperative third-person shooter where a team of adventurers blasts through hordes of mythological enemies. It’s a technological showcase, built around the next-gen Vulkan and DirectX 12 technologies and infused with features like HDR support and the ability to toggle asynchronous compute on and off. It uses Rebellion’s custom Azure engine. We test using the Vulkan renderer, which is faster than DX12.

strange brigade Brad Chacos/IDG

Next page: gaming benchmarks continue

At a Glance
  • The Sapphire Nitro+ Radeon RX 6700 XT delivers exceptional 1440p and high refresh rate 1080p gaming with no compromises other than ray tracing performance. It's silent, cool, and looks great, with Sapphire's optional Trixx Boost utility capable of pushing frame rates significantly higher. We aren't taking price into consideration given market conditions during a pandemic-driven global GPU shortage.

    Pros

    • Great 1440p and 1080p gaming performance
    • Trixx Boost can make performance significantly faster
    • 12GB of memory bolstered by Infinity Cache
    • Exceptional design: Very cool, whisper quite, and attractive
    • Luxurious extras like ARGB header and triple-BIOS switch

    Cons

    • No DLSS-like feature means AMD's ray tracing performance is lackluster
    • Price is high, but will be much higher on the street during global GPU shortage
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