SAPPHIRE Nitro+ Radeon RX 5700XT – Top Tier Navi

Sep 16, 2019



Type Graphics Card
Price $439.99

SAPPHIRE Nitro+ RX 5700 XT - A Closer Look

SAPPHIRE introduced their Nitro lineup a few generations ago with the Radeon 300 series and they have continued to keep that line clean, yet a more mature in style and features.  Monochrome, sharp lines, yet packing where it counts.

The SAPPHIRE Nitro+ RX 5700XT comes in with an overclocked Base Block of 1770MHz, a Boost Clock of 2010MHz, and a Game Clock of 1905MHz.  In all our testing the card ran between 1925MHz and 1950MHz.  Memory is still 8GB of GDDR6 on a 256bit bus clocking in at an effective 14Gbps transfer rate.  So this card features an actual overclock rather than just a slightly bolstered boost clock

Sapphire Radeon RX 5500 XT NITRO+ Special Edition Graphics Card Listed For $259 US – Navi 14 With Short PCB, Massive Cooling

The shroud wraps the enormous heatsink effectively and has the usual Nitro+ colors of black, silver, and gray. The only complaint is that the shroud does have a bit of flex to it.   The backplate extends over the side of the card but has welcome cutouts for the BIOS Switch as well as exhaust and PCIe power connector cutouts. As an added bonus of functionality to the aluminum backplate SAPPHIRE has added thermal pads to help transfer additional heat from the VRM section of the back of the PCB to the backplate for extra cooling.  The cutouts on the area above the exposed heatsinks that allow air to flow from the fan through the heatsink and leave the card unrestricted is a good move, but there is quite a bit of blank space on the back of the PCB that makes me wonder if they couldn't have made the card itself smaller and allow for more of an opening like they did in the past with high-end Radeon cards. I/O of the card gets a bit of a shakeup and now features a pair of HDMI and a pair of DisplayPort 1.4 connections

The sides of the card expose the densely packed finned heatsink.  Peeking under the heatsink we can see that the VRAM and VRM heat dissipation plate is nicely adorned with fin stacks to help dissipate heat even better since it's independent of the GPU core heatsink.  The large section of the heatsink between the SAPPHIRE logo and the I/O of the card is actually connected to the VRAM cooling plate to allow for exceptional memory cooling.  The VRM is connected right into the massive cooling fin stack that also doubles to make the card more rigid.

We see a return of SAPPHIRE's Fan Check and removable fan design making for easy cleaning of the heatsink or replacing a dead or dying fan.  They are using an asymmetrical fan design here with two 95mm fans flanking a smaller 87mm that is spinning in the opposite direction in the middle, a very interesting approach and one that is pretty effective and keeping the full bore Navi core cool and quiet.  SAPPHIRE is also planning to offer replacement clear fans that feature addressable RGB in case the side color and backplate aren't quite enough for you.

Speaking of Addressable RGB, there's quite a bit on here for a SAPPHIRE card.  The diffused side light is much nicer than I expected it to be and the lights on the back of the card are almost as muted as the colors of the card itself, but it all comes together in a rather impressive package.  For those who don't want to use the TRIXX software to control the aRGB can actually use an aRGB header located on the card itself to control the lighting from the motherboard instead so that all your colors could be perfectly in sync.

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