As the great graphics card mining crisis rumbles on, picking a time to upgrade your PC has become a minefield of inflated prices and overblown mark-ups – and nowhere has this been felt more keenly than AMD’s new Radeon RX Vega 56 card and its big brother, the Radeon RX Vega 64.
Whereas the RX Vega 64 targets the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 (our current best graphics card for 4K gaming), the RX Vega 56 takes aim at the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070. That is, an excellent graphics card for 2560×1440 resolutions with ambitions of pushing into the 4K arena with a couple of compromises. And yet their respective prices couldn’t be more different, with the cheapest GTX 1070 currently costing around £500 / $665, while the poor old RX Vega 56 will set you back at least £750 / $750. The easily-parsable Asus Radeon RX Vega 56 ROG Strix OC Gaming version I’ve got here demands even more, too, with prices at time of writing sitting lamentably out of reach around the £840 / $900 mark.
This immediately puts the RX Vega 56 on the back foot, regardless of which make you go for, but assuming everything starts settling down at some point in the future (and good gravy I hope they do), I’m going to ignore prices for the moment and just focus on whether it’s just a good graphics card. Capice? Capice. Let’s get to it. Read the rest of this entry »