EDIT: It has never felt greater to be so wrong before. False alarm.

Original Article: AMD’s Navi 32 core clocks extremely high, not that consumers will actually have a chance to experiment and experience free performance gains of up to 15%.

Since the introduction of the RX 6000 series, AMD have been arbitrarily hard locking down its maximum GPU core frequency, with the RX 6900 XT being hard clocked to a maximum of 3 GHz (3000 MHz) while the RX 7900 XT / XTX is unlocked but has a locked down power table, limiting OC ability.

While the lower end of the spectrum, the RX 6800 / XT and the newly introduced Radeon RX 7700 XT and 7800 XT which I’ve gone over in more detail HERE, are hard locked to 2.8 GHz (2800 MHz).

With RDNA 2 (RX 6000 series), the hard locks on maximum frequency wasn’t as big an issue as tech outlets lead you to believe, specifically because it was neigh impossible for Radeon RX 6000 series cards to actually reach the upper echelon of its limitations, however it has now become an actual issue with the RX 7000 series.

The Radeon RX 7700 XT and Radeon RX 7800 XT have now officially launched, review outlets all over the internet have pump and dumped their benchmarks and reviews with results being unanimous, the RX 7700 XT crushes the 4060 Ti and the RX 7800 XT is a far better alternative to the RTX 4070 and marginally faster too.

But do you know what genuinely bugs me? Have you noticed how the usual tech press suspects and review channels have seemingly stopped benchmarking their graphics cards with OC figures? Because I fucking have, it’s not a recent thing too for at least several years up until this point review outlets mainly have stopped producing large scale gaming benchmarking figures featuring GPUs that have been overclocked.

OC benches are now regulated to synthetics on the rare occasion on in the case of that prick Gamers’ Nexus, overclocking a graphics card is only useful for verifying…. power consumption and power consumption alone.

Absolutely fucking useless information.

I’ve noticed this sort of trend since around the introduction of the AMD Radeon VII back in 2019, whereas beforehand OC benchmarks were commonplace, I mean it’s literally free fucking performance and increases the longevity of your GPU, it’s possibly one of the most valuable pieces of information a reviewer and provide in their benchmark tests.

In the past these sacks of shit used to actually list the actual frequency of the GPUs they were tested at but now they are just considered STOCK. What the hell is “STOCK” anyway? Last I fucking checked an aftermarket graphics card is essentially overclocked from factory, Gamers Nexus bunches up a bunch of reference GPUs against top of the line AIB “stock” graphics cards and we’re supposed to applaud that?

What the fuck has happened to benchmarking, it’s all horse shit and useless data entries. These people need a goddamn boot up the ass.

Anyways, I am rambling again, said reviews of the Radeon RX 7700 XT and 7800 XT have shown that both graphics cards have a lot of untapped potential from their default frequency, with TechPowerUp being able to achieve core clock speeds of 2936 MHz on the Radeon RX 7800 XT and a staggering 3133 MHz on the Radeon RX 7700 XT. Twice.

Compared to the Radeon RX 7800 XT’s default boost frequency of 2430 MHz, a core clock of even 2850 MHz is over a 17% improvement, while the maximum of 2936 MHz achieved is over 20% higher than stock.

Once again, there is hardly any OC benchmarking figures from the tech press, with TPU only testing performance across a single “game”, that title being 3DMark Time Spy, a synthetic test benchmark.

Of which for the maximum of 2936 MHz achieved with the Sapphire Nitro+ compared to a default Radeon RX 7800 XT, the massive overclock has provided a total performance gain of 19% from 58.4 frames per second to 69.5 frames per second on average.


And tech journalists seemingly don’t give a fuck to cover anything of the sort anymore, suspicious if you ask me, they used to love posting OC benchmarks when it showed AMD Radeons getting their heads kicked in, but that’s just a conspiracy.

The RX 7700 XT is even more severe, with a default boost frequency of 2544 MHz, TechPowerUp managed to overclock the card 23.15% higher than “reference” of which there is no reference designed RX 7700 XT available for purchase, all of them are aftermarket only.

However, the RX 7700 XT Pulse from Sapphire does come with the rated boost frequency of 2544 MHz, and managed to OC fairly well to 3025 MHz with ease, comparing its baseline performance versus that of the “XFX Qick” which reached 3133 MHz, TechPowerUp shows a 19.83% performance improvement by simply moving a bunch of sliders to the right.

The performance improvements from overclocking Navi 32 is so severe that at over 3 GHz you can have the Radeon RX 7700 XT surpass the performance figure or match that of the RX 7800 XT which has much more memory bandwidth at its disposal alongside having 6 additional CUs or 384 Stream Processors.

The performance of the GPUs themselves essentially rival that of the previous generation Radeon RX 6800 XT, with the 7800 XT despite being a much smaller and less “capable” chip marginally ahead while the 7700 XT creams the RX 6800 with ease, performance stagnation if you will but these GPUs cost AMD far less money to produce rather.

So you’re basically getting the same performance plus all the other goodies RDNA 3 has to offer, the Xilinx media encoder, on par with NVENC, the enhanced RT capabilities and AI functionality to boot, while actual gaming performance from the 6800 XT to 7800 XT is roughly less than 5% for almost a quarter less in terms of price.

And of course it goes without saying with the RX 7800 XT and 7700 XT you now have access to HYPR-RX, a driver side alternative to AMD’s frame interpolation FSR 3.0 which works best with RX 7000 series hardware boosting frame rates with fake frames for literally hundreds of DirectX 11 & 12 titles.

So, for a side grade their launch reviews are good. By default both the aforementioned Radeons either match, marginally surpass competitor GPUs that cost $100 or completely dominate equally priced GeForce counterparts by over 15% with both GPUs offering tremendous OC headroom allowing you to leave those NVIDIA GeForce RTX graphics cards in the dust where they belong.

No. No you cannot, because these reviews were obviously conducted with review sample products and said review sampled products have a supplied graphics driver that must be utilized to conduct reviews and testing, there’s actually a difference between graphics driver updates and therefore performance between when a GPU review was conducted and when the NDA or non disclosure agreement is over and the graphics cards have landed on store shelves.

And sadly it would seem that the launch drivers for Navi 32 have brought upon AMD’s ridiculous clock frequency limitation, at least according to my own sources.

For the first time ever AMD’s frequency lock is actually holding back the potential of its Radeon RX graphics cards from reaching core clock frequencies they can actually obtain, with launch drivers for both these new Radeons allegedly locking them down to a maximum of 2.8 GHz or 2800 MHz.

Maybe AMD will rectify the limitations for the RX 7700 XT & 7800 XT but I doubt that, overclocking as a whole has been slowly phased out over the past few years, the tech press cabal no longer share OC benchmarks so what good does it serve to pander towards the supposedly “niche” crowd?

I actually mean it too, hardly if ever does AMD as a company ever step a foot wrong with arbitrary bullshit that goes against the consumer, I understand that most consumers are frankly dumb as a rock, they will never actually overclock their graphics cards but I don’t fucking care. The option should always be there for whoever decides to push their GPU to the ragged edge in pursuit of additional performance, maybe not today or tomorrow but years from now when these GPUs are old and completely irrelevant? Being able to gain an extra 15+ percent performance means a whole goddamn lot to some people.

What a goddamn shame.