Powercolor AMD Radeon RX 6800 XT Red Devil hits 2.8GHz on air...

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Powercolor’s beastly Radeon RX 6800 XT (opens in new tab) has hit 2.8GHz in testing. That epic overclock was achieved courtesy of nothing more than the card’s massive air cooler.

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The Red Devil’s standard clock speeds, announced earlier today, are already a useful uptick on the reference 6800 XT (opens in new tab), with the Boost clock bumped from 2,250MHz to 2,340MHz. Thai Youtube channel ExtremeIT (opens in new tab) got their mitts on one of the cards and managed to crank the clocks all the way to 2.8GHz.

The video has since been made private (via Videocardz (opens in new tab)) so we can neither confirm nor deny what at face value is a very impressive overclock for an air-cooled card. Indeed, it’s precisely the same frequency achieved by overclocker Takakou from TecLab. But he used liquid nitrogen.

That said, the Powercolor Red Devil reportedly proved somewhat unstable at 2.8GHz, with ExtremeIT finally settling on 2,650MHz. That was enough for a 3DMark Fire Strike graphics score of 56,756 points. Takakou managed 61,831 points.

Meanwhile, another Youtuber with one of these Red Devil boards has shown the card running stable in game at over 2.7GHz (opens in new tab). According to der8auer (opens in new tab) that makes the card faster than Nvidia's crazy money RTX 3090 in pure raster-based games. When ray-tracing enters the equation, Nvidia's new Ampere GPUs take a big lead.

Anyway, the Red Devil is just one of a slew of new custom 6800-series boards that look awfully appealing. But you can’t actually, you know, buy, thanks to poor availability of all AMD’s new RDNA 2-based graphics cards. Still, reports like this at least add weight to the notion that AMD’s big Navi chip is quite the overclocker. 

When you consider how much the cards costs, it’s nice to know their might be significant levels of additional performance waiting to be unleashed.

Jeremy Laird
Hardware writer

Jeremy has been writing about technology and PCs since the 90nm Netburst era (Google it!) and enjoys nothing more than a serious dissertation on the finer points of monitor input lag and overshoot followed by a forensic examination of advanced lithography. Or maybe he just likes machines that go “ping!” He also has a thing for tennis and cars.