We recently took a look at PowerColor’s simple version of the Radeon RX 560. The considered video card was equipped with 2 GB of video memory and worked at low frequencies, so a number of reservations were made in the conclusions. It’s time to explore the more powerful versions of the Radeon RX 560 with 4 GB of memory and additional power. Such a video card is ASUS ROG Strix (ROG-STRIX-RX560-O4G-GAMING), which is the subject of this review.
ASUS ROG Strix Radeon RX 560 O4GB Gaming OC Edition
The ASUS video card comes in a small box. In addition to the traditional disk with software, the package includes Velcro ties for wires and overhead decorative elements for the case.
The design retains continuity with other models of the ASUS Strix series, but this card is smaller in size. It is equipped with a cooler with two fans.
Solid black plastic body. Complete overlays allow you to dilute the overall style with small inserts with red elements.
Two heat pipes peek out from the side. Total length 19.5 cm, board is shorter. In the corner is a 6-pin power connector. Recall that many inexpensive versions with 2 GB of memory are deprived of a power connector.
There is an illuminated logo on the side of the case. The glow mode and color can be changed through a special software application.
There are three output connectors on the rear panel: DisplayPort, HDMI and DVI-D.
The cooling system is identical to that installed on the ASUS ROG Strix Radeon RX 460. This is an aluminum one-piece heatsink with two heat pipes.
With direct contact, the tubes are in direct contact with the surface of the GPU die. At the point of contact, the tubes are closely fitted to each other; in terms of thickness, they just correspond to the width of the crystal. It is worth noting that our specimen had a dark, oily fingerprint in the contact zone under the paste. This indicates some slovenliness when assembling budget video cards. However, this is the only nitpick against ASUS against the background of many other reviewed models.
The radiator is one-piece, with many fins. There are slots that allow fans to blow over the board and the elements on it.
The plastic casing with fans clings to the edges of the radiator with latches. The diameter of the Power Logic PLD8010S12H propellers meets the standard 80 mm.
A small radiator is installed on the transistors of the supply circuit.
The circuit board is identical to that of the previous Strix Radeon RX 460 model. The GPU is powered by four phases.
Four gigabytes of memory are provided by four GDDR5 Micron 6YA47 D9SXD chips. A small chip is located on a substrate without a protective frame, but there are pads around the board that prevent the cooler from being skewed.
ASUS ROG-STRIX-RX560-O4G-GAMING runs at higher frequencies. The processor operates at 1326 MHz, the effective memory frequency is 7000 MHz.
The PowerColor Red Dragon RX 560 2GB example showed that the GPU frequency in this series can vary greatly, and differs from the declared maximum value. But in this case, we can talk about the «correct» version, which does not have strict power restrictions. Therefore, the actual frequency under gaming load turned out to be as close as possible to the declared 1326 MHz. By the way, this is close to the maximum overclocking level of the PowerColor video card. When tested in Tom Clancy’s The Division, there were slight drops below 1326 MHz, up to about 1317 MHz. In Gears of War 4 with DirectX 12, the overall frequency was closer to 1300 MHz.
When testing indoors with temperatures around 25°C, the GPU warmed up to 77-79°C. At the same time, the fans spun up to 2400 rpm, creating a certain noise. ASUS STRIX-RX460-O4G-GAMING had lower temperature and noise characteristics and were more comfortable. It seems that increasing the frequency dramatically affects the heat dissipation of Polaris. As a result, the new AMD graphics cards show a hot temper, which is true for both the Radeon RX 570/580 and the Radeon RX 560.
Other frequency profiles are also supported. Through the ASUS GPU Tweak II utility, you can enable Silent mode or select the OC Mode profile with an increase in the core frequency to 1336 MHz. We are primarily interested in maximum overclocking. As a result of the experiments, we stopped at a core frequency of 1370 MHz while overclocking the memory to 8080 MHz. This is significantly higher than the overclocking performance of the economical PowerColor RX 560 2GB card and higher than the overclocking of the old Radeon RX 460.
Overclocking to 1370/8080 MHz was achieved by raising the power limit to the maximum and switching the cooling to a more powerful mode. The latter was achieved by manually speeding up the fans to 3200 rpm, while peak temperatures could still reach 75-76°C. Noise in such conditions is very high.
For the sake of interest, experiments were carried out at higher frequencies. The best achievement is passing the hard 3DMark Time Spy test at 1400/8200 MHz. An impressive result, but there was no complete stability in this mode.
For our testing, we needed a mode in which ASUS would replace the simple Radeon RX 560 4GB models. It is unlikely that simple cards demonstrate a stable frequency in Boost mode without drawdowns, so it was decided to limit the maximum frequency to 1250 MHz