AMD is starting 2022 by bringing its RX 6000-series graphics to a wider range of laptops. The brand has unveiled an Radeon RX 6000S range of GPUs built specifically for thin-and-light laptops (under 0.78in and 4.5lbs). They tout power and performance-per-watt optimizations that theoretically allow for 20 percent thinner designs without steep hits to performance.
The mainstream RX 6600S reportedly delivers 80 frames per second or more at high detail settings across a range of recent games, such as Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War and Deathloop. Bump up to the RX 6700S and you'll get 100FPS or higher, while the RX 6800S musters 100FPS and beyond at maximum settings. Your real-world experience will almost certainly vary, but AMD clearly believes all of the new GPUs can handle common games without a struggle.
There are more options if you value performance above portability. The new Radeon RX 6850M is only 7 percent faster than the 6800M, but the mid-range RX 6650M and 6650M XT are up to 20 percent faster than the 6600M. You'll also find starter RX 6300M and 6500M chips that are billed as 200 percent faster than NVIDIA's GeForce MX450, although we'd expect that gap to narrow with the new MX550 and MX570.
You can expect a wave of laptops using these chips to be announced throughout CES 2022. Prices are bound to vary widely, but they should appear in the first quarter.
And yes, there's plenty for desktop gamers — including a long-awaited software feature. The Radeon RX 6500 XT rivals NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 1650 with a claimed 20 to 60 percent higher performance in 1080p games. And importantly, there's a new Radeon Super Resolution feature that better counters NVIDIA's DLSS upscaling. Enable it in "thousands" of games and you can use a lower internal resolution (like 1440p) to boost frame rates at 4K. The Adrenalin Edition software needed to enable RSR won't be available until later in the first quarter, but it will come with perks like an enhanced AMD Link (up to four friends can connect to your desktop) and an eye-tracking Privacy View.
The RX 6500 XT arrives January 19th for $199. That's a solid value if the performance claims hold up, although we'd note that chronic GPU shortages could easily send that price skyward.
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