Recently, AMD has been hogging the news spotlight with its new Ryzen processors and now they have decided to throw some new graphics cards into the mix. Are these cards the widely anticipated Vega cards? No. They are not. They are slightly improved versions of AMD’s RX 400 series cards. Will they set the world on fire? Probably not, but the RX 500 series does offer some great power for relatively low prices.
The Flavors of the RX 500
The new RX 500 cards come in 4 different variations: the 580, 570, 560, and the 550. The 580, being the strongest card of the pack, is advertised as being VR and 1440p/1080p gaming ready. The 570 is a slightly less powerful 580 for $20 less, but it is still a capable 1080p resolution card. The 560 and 550 are the least powerful of the bunch and not hitting stores until a later date. The 580 prices range from $230 – $200 for the 8GB and 4GB versions. The 570 prices begin at $170 and the 560 and 550 will be $100 and $80 when they launch. The RX 500 series look to compete with other mid range GPUs and these prices are quite competitive for the power they bring. Just like their RX 400 brethren, the RX 500 cards will be great choices for budget PC builds.
New Old Hardware
The RX 500 series are meant to reinforce AMD’s place in the mid range GPU market. Their announcement comes hot on the heels of the new Ryzen 5 CPUs and obviously AMD is trying to get people to upgrade their rigs. With Ryzen 5 and an RX 500 card, you could build a relatively strong PC at an extremely competitive price. But unfortunately, the new 500 cards are just slight upgrades from their RX 400 brothers. If you are looking for brand new hardware for your budget rig, the 500 series may disappoint you. They do bring some slight power graphical power increases, but they also take in more wattage and are slightly underwhelming if you plan to overclock. The RX 500s are great cards for their price, but they are nothing more than gussied up RX 400 cards.
Where is Vega?
The new announcement may also disappoint those high end users waiting for AMD’s Vega cards to hit the scene. These RX 500 cards can’t compete with a GTX 1080; so someone looking for a new powerful card from AMD will still be waiting for the Vega announcement. AMD has stated that Vega will be shown sometime before the end of June, but it is a shame that they haven’t shown something that can compete with NVIDA’s strongest cards as of yet.
While the RX 500 cards aren’t exactly new hardware, they do bring great gaming power at a very competitive mid-range price. AMD has made more of a step than a leap, but you can’t argue with the RX 500’s value.
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