Well the Strix RX 570 isn’t the first RX 570 that has come into the office but it is the first Asus video card that we have had in a while. Today I want to check out what Asus is doing to set themselves apart from everyone else, compare the performance of this card to the XFX 570 as well as the rest of the competition, and see how it compares in value. I’ve been impressed with the Asus Strix styling on motherboards recently and it looks like some of that has carried over to the GPU market so it should rate high but the only way to find out is to get to it so let's do that.

Product Name: Asus Strix RX 570

Review Sample Provided by: Asus

Written by: Wes

Pictures by: Wes

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Specifications

Graphics Engine

AMD Radeon RX 570

OpenGL

OpenGL®4.5

Video Memory

GDDR5 4GB

Engine Clock

1310 MHz (OC Mode)

1300 MHz (Gaming Mode)

Stream Processors

2048

Memory Clock

7000 MHz

Memory Interface

256-bit

Resolution

Digital Max Resolution:5120x2880

Interface

DVI Output: Yes x 2 (Native) (DVI-D)

HDMI Output: Yes x 1 (Native) (HDMI 2.0)

Display Port: Yes x 1 (Native) (Regular DP)

HDCP Support: Yes

Power Connectors

1 x 8-pin

Accessories

2 x ROG Cable Ties

2 x Orange Color Decals

Software

ASUS GPU Tweak II & Driver

Aura (Graphics Card) Utility

Dimensions

9.5 " x 5.1 " x 1.5 " Inch

24 x 12.9 x3.9 Centimeter

Before jumping into everything I do want to include a copy of the GPUz from my testing. This shows that I was on the 17.5.1 driver when testing and what BIOS revision as well. The 1300 MHz clock speeds also line up with what is listed in their specifications for the gaming mode, using Asus’s software you can bump up to the OC mode for an extra 10 Mhz as well. This is a little faster than the 1264MHz of the XFX 570 that I also covered.

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Packaging

The Strix RX 570 sticks with a typical Strix look, that means on the front of the box they do have the Strix logo in its multi-color glory. Asus also slipped in a photo of the actual card on to the front, something I wish everyone would do. Beyond that, the Radeon branding is on the bottom right corner along with the ROG logo in the top left. On the back, Asus has split up a few of the features with photos and a short description on each. They touch on the Aura lighting, their 0dB tech, wing blade fans, GPU Tweak II software, and they even mention their new fan connect II where the card itself has a fan header on it. There is also a short specification listing as well as a drawing of the back of the card to show the display connection options.

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Inside the card comes wrapped up in a static protective bag and then it sits in a foam tray cut to fit the card. On top is another layer of foam for complete protection.

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For documentation, you just get a speed setup guide. There is also a driver disc that also has the GPU Tweak II software on it but as always I suggest downloading both from online to get the most up to date versions. For accessories, the card comes with two ROG themed wire ties and there are two small metal stickers that you can add to the card if you don’t want a monochrome look.

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Card Layout and Photos

If you haven’t see the Strix styling that Asus has been moving to recently this is a great example of it. The main idea is to move to a color neutral theme and to use a little lighting to match your PCs theme. So they use a dark gray and black for the fan shroud. The design itself has a very angular styling and you can especially see this where the shroud bends around to the top. The ROG logo is still there and it is backlit. The fans for this specific card are really big, you can get some scale by looking at how far up past the top of the PCI bracket. One fan ahs the ROG logo on it and the other has the Asus logo. Up on the top edge, there is also the Strix logo embossed into the shroud.

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The cooling design is similar to what you find from the other manufacturers. The GPU has the heatsink directly on top of it and if you look from the top view you can see that the two heatpipes are also direct contact where a lot of other companies don’t have that. The heatpipes feed down and then over to pull heat from the GPU out to the outside portions of the heatsink that runs the length of the GPU. Then the two large fans blow down over the heatsink to cool things down. The shroud design has openings around the top, bottom, and end for the warm air to have a place to vent. The normal blower style reference cards don’t do this, they try to push all of the air out the back of the case. Also on the end of this card was something very unique. I spotted a 4-pin PWM fan header, I’ve never seen this before. Asus added this so you can hook a fan directly up to the video card if that fan controls the air around the video card. Motherboards normally control the fans based off the CPU or chipset temperatures, this way if everything else is running cool but the video card needs more air it can turn it up.

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For power, the Strix RX 570 has the same 8-pin power connection that the XFX RX 570 RS has as well. This should handle the 150-watt TDP of the RX 570 plus the additional power needed for Asus’s overclock. The connection is flipped around with the clip on the PCB side and the PCB is notched to give clearance for that. This is to still have room to unhook the power without cutting into the heatsinks space.

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For display connections, the Strix RX 570 has two DVI, one DisplayPort, and one HDMI. This is very different from the direction that most cards are going including the XFX 570 RS that has one DVI, one HDMI, and three DisplayPorts. I love the large air vent opening and the small additional holes above the HDMI and DisplayPort. Up above the top of the PCI bracket, we can get a good idea of the total height of the Strix RX 570 as well where it sticks up about an inch. The PCB sticks up slightly but the fan shroud is even higher if you look past the metal support bracket.

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The back of the Strix RX 570 doesn’t have a backplate or anything but the flat black PCB looks awesome. I was surprised that Asus went with such a tall PCB, but it is nice to see them using their own PCB design not just the off the shelf reference design from AMD.

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Our Test Rig and Procedures

Our Test Rig

CPU

Intel i7-5960X

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Memory

Kingston HyperX FURY Black 32GB Quad Channel Kit 2666 MHz

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Motherboard

Gigabyte X99-SOC Champion 

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Cooling

Noctua NH-U12S Cooler

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Power Supply

Corsair AX1200w

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Storage

Kingston Hyper X Savage 960GB SSD

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Case

Primochill Wetbench

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OS

Windows 10 Pro 64-bit

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Our Testing Procedures

3DMark

The same goes for the most current version of 3DMark using the Fire Strike benchmark in normal, extreme, and ultra settings. Tests are also run in the DX12 focused Time Spy benchmark as well.

Unigine Superposition

1080p Medium, 1080p Extreme, 4k Optimized, and 8k Optimized benchmarks all run in DirectX

Unigine Valley Benchmark 1.0

Using the Extreme HD preset to get an average FPS

Catzilla 4k

Default tests for 1080p, 1440p, and 4k resolutions using the overall score for each as our result

SteamVR

Default SteamVR test using Average Quality score

VRMark

Orange and Blue rooms tested, use Average FPS for the result

Ghost Recon Wildlands

Ultra and High detail settings are used in the built-in benchmark run at 1080p, 1440p, and 4k

Deus Ex: Mankind Divided

Tests are done using the built-in benchmark at High and Ultra graphic settings at both 1080p 1440p, and 4k resolutions.

DOOM

Doom is tested on the Ultra quality setting. Tests are run at 1080p 1440p, and 4k using both OpenGL and Vulkan. The benchmark is a basic one using just the average FPS in the opening scene.

HITMAN 2016

Fullscreen with V-Sync turned off Detail, Texture Quality, Shadow Maps, and Shadow Resolution all set to their highest settings. We test using both DX11 and DX12 at 1080p 1440p, and 4k.

Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation

Built-in benchmark ran at 1080p 1440p, and 4k with graphics settings set to the “Crazy” setting with the exception of turning off V-Sync Mode. The benchmark scenario is set to GPU Focused and we use the Average Framerate for All Batches as the result. Tests are run in DX12

The Division

Built-in benchmark ran at 1080p 1440p, and 4k with graphics settings set to the default “Ultra” setting with the exception of turning off V-Sync Mode

Total War: ROME II

Ultra-setting tested at 1080p 1440p, and 4k, built in forest benchmark

Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor

Using the built-in benchmark we test with ultra settings at 1440p and 4k

Sniper Elite 3

Ultra-setting tested at 1080p 1440p, and 4k, built in benchmark

Thief

Tested using the “Very High” setting at 1080p 1440p, and 4k with V-sync off

Passmark Performance Test 9

Test using the GPU Compute Score inside of Passmark’s Performance Test 9

CompuBenchCL

Video Composition and Bitcoin tests

Unigine Valley Benchmark 1.0 heat testing

We run through Unigine Valley using the “Extreme HD” preset for 30 minutes to test in game cooling performance with the fan speed set to auto then again with the fan set to 100%.

Power Usage

Using 3dmark Fire Strike with the “performance” preset, we get our “load” power usage number from the peak power usage during our test. We get our numbers from a Kill-A-Watt connected to the test benches power cord.

Noise Testing

Our Noise testing is done using a decibel meter 18 inches away from the video card on the bottom/fan side of the card. We test at both 50% and 100% fan speeds. The 100% test isn’t a representation of typical in-game noise levels, but it will show you how loud a card can be if you run it at its highest setting or if it gets very hot. This is done using a Protmex PT02 Sound Meter that is rated IEC651 type 2 and ANSI S1.4 type 2. Tests are done set weighted to A and set to a slow response using the max function. The ambient noise level in the testing area is 33.3 decibels using the test settings.

 


Synthetic Benchmarks

As always I like to run through a few synthetic benchmarks to help directly compare the difference between cards before taking a look at in game performance. Before that, though I should touch again on the clock speeds of the Strix RX 570 and the XFX RX 570 RS that I already covered. The Strix has a fairly significant clock speed advantage over the XFX card, it’s out of the box clock speed is 1300 MHz where the XFX card was clocked at 1264 MHz. That should translate to better performance, but to find out for sure I tested using 3DMark. I used the Fire Strike benchmark at 1080p, 1440p, and 4k resolutions and then I used the newer Time Spy benchmark to check out DX12 performance. In all four tests the Strix card was noticeably faster than the XFX RX 570 and this was also enough to push us up surprisingly close to the RX 480 4GB reference numbers as well. In the case of the 1080p performance setting it came up near the GTX 1060 Founders Edition card.

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In the two Unigine benchmarks, the results were similar, the extra clock speed put us back over the fastest RX 470, well above the XFX 570, and up near the RX 480 except in the 8K Superposition test, but that one doesn’t matter much 8K is still a long way out.

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In Catzilla I tested again at 1080p, 1440p, and 4k but I was mostly focused on the 1080p results as they are the most relevant for this card. The Strix RX 570 came in about 100 points behind the RX 480 4GB reference design.

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VR Benchmarks

While the number of VR-focused benchmarks isn’t all that high just yet, I did test using two popular tests. The first is the SteamVR benchmark a simple test from Valve that checks the cards capabilities with current games. Anything above a 6 is playable with the higher the number goes the better it is. The cap is 11 as well. The Strix RX 570 came in at 6.5 and right next to the RX 480 4GB. In my second set of tests, I used VRMarks two benchmarks. The orange room test checks performance of today's VR games and the blue room is future looking, testing performance in an ultra high detail VR environment. The goal is 120 FPS as anything lower isn’t smooth in VR. The Strix RX 570 did great in the orange room test with 142.38 FPS but like everything else failed badly on the blue room test.

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In-Game Benchmarks

Now we finally get into the in game performance that is the main reason people pick up a new video card. To test things out I ran through our recently updated benchmark suite that tests 10 games at three different resolutions (1080p, 1440p, and 4k). I also slipped in a few variations on the same games for comparisons like DX11 to DX12, OpenGL to Vulkan, and a couple of games are just tested at their highest setting and lower but still high detail options to show the performance difference when things are turned down slightly. In total, each video card is tested 41 times and that makes for a huge mess of graphs when you put them all together. To help with that I like to start off with these overall playability graphs that take all of the results and give an easier to read the result. I have one for each of the three resolutions and each is broken up into four FPS ranges. Under 30 FPS is considered unplayable, over 30 is playable but not ideal, over 60 is the sweet spot, and then over 120 FPS is for high refresh rate monitors.

So how did the Strix RX 570 perform overall? Well at 1080p, the resolution is it designed for it did very well. 8 games at their highest settings were above 60 FPS with two of those being up past 120 FPS. Even the worst performing games were still in the 30 to 59 FPS range where you can play but it’s not smooth or you can drop the settings slightly and get up in the higher numbers. At 1440p almost all of the games were in the 30-59 FPS range with just two above 60 and 1 below 30. That actually isn’t too bad as well, it wouldn’t be my first choice at that resolution but as you can see it is playable. Then with things up to 4k 8 games were unplayable and 6 were in that playable but not great 30-59 FPS range.

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For any of the people crazy enough to sort through the rest fo the results, like myself, I do have those below as well. The Wildlands results were interesting as going from Ultra to High settings was enough to go from 30 FPS to 65 FPS at 1080p, a great example of how dropping down just slightly on the settings can make a big difference. Deus Ex was similar but was just short of 60 on the lower setting. As always the DOOM Vulkan performance was crazy, like on any AMD card. At 1080p the FPS went from 80, a good number all the way up to 125 FPS! The difference between DX11 and DX12 wasn’t much in Hitman and as usual, the Ashes of the Singularity results were all low and all very close together.

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Compute Benchmarks

The RX 570 isn’t exactly the first card that comes to mind when looking at overall compute performance but I like to check out every card that comes in. I test looking at a few areas that everyday users are more likely to use. The Passmark benchmark is just a look at overall compute performance, then I use CompuBenchCL to check out video composition performance and then Bitcoin mining performance. In Passmark, our first test the Strix RX 570 didn’t do as good as I expected, in fact, it came in below the XFX card with a lower clock speed for some reason. The gap was small though.

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In CompuBenchCL the Video Composition benchmark checks out the FPS that the card can render video at and here the Strix RX 570 did better with an FPS of 104.71 putting it just behind the GTX 1060 FE. The Bitcoin benchmark was about on par with the XFX RX 570 with it having a slight edge putting the Strix right in the middle of last years RX 470’s so there wasn’t any improvement here.

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Cooling, Noise, and Power

For the last batch of testing, I focused on areas that aren’t game performance specific. I tested power, cooling, and noise levels. All three are also areas where card manufacturers play a bigger role in performance, in other words, this is where cards with the same GPU can stand out against the competition. The first benchmark was to take a look at the overall power usage. I use a Kill-A-Watt to monitor the wattage draw of our entire test system and put it under load in 3DMark Fire Strike at 1080p (performance setting) noting the highest wattage pulled. The Strix RX 570 ended up pulling 312 watts at peak, this was much higher than the XFX RX 570 that I already consider to be a high power usage card and it even put the card up above the RX 480 8GB reference card. The next highest draw was actually the GTX 1080 Founders Edition for some perspective.

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For the next round of tests, I was focusing on overall fan noise. Considering the Strix RX 570 doesn’t turn the fans on at idle and low power draw I manually set the fans at 50% and 100% and documented the decibel levels from 18 inches away. I also took note of the fans speeds as well because they play a big role in the noise levels. In this test the Strix RX 570 really impressed me, being the quietest card tested under our new test conditions at 51.5 decibels. The 50% fan speed results weren’t the lowest as well but they still weren’t bad. The 1553 fan speed at 100% played a big role in the lower noise levels of course.

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Our last tests were temperature testing where done in Valley benchmark with it on loop and I tested at the stock fan settings and then after things cooled off I tested again at 100% fan speed. This gives us a look at the out of the box performance with the stock settings then a look at how much headroom is left in the cooler as well if sound isn’t an issue. At the stock settings, the Strix RX 570 didn’t do too bad at 65 degrees, the XFX in this same test was up at 73 degrees. With the fan turned up it dropped 20 degrees and was exactly on par with the XFX for overall cooling capacity. Of course, given the higher clock speed and the much higher power draw, I think the Asus’s cooling is slightly better all things being equal.

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Overall and Final Verdict

So with all of my testing done and having taken a closer look at the Asus Strix RX 570’s features lets break it all down. With this being the first Asus card that has come in for a while I am really liking the direction they have gone. The new Strix styling really looks good on video cards and with it being color neutral it is going to match most PCs better than the old red and black ROG theme as well as the same red and black look that the XFX 570 had. Like the XFX the 1080p performance was great and 1440p was even playable but the Strix improved on the performance even more with its much higher clock speed. Even with that the Strix RX 570 managed to run surprisingly cool and be the quietest card tested as well. Really the only downside was with the power usage. The higher clock speed translated to much higher power usage when put under load, putting the 570 all the way up below the GTX 1080.

The Strix RX 570 seems to be one of if not the best RX 570 on the market so if you are locked in getting an RX 570 this is a great one to be looking at. As I brought up in our XFX review, I do have some concerns with the price points that the RX 570’s are running at overall when compared to the GTX 1060’s currently. But for anyone looking to stick with AMD and to get good 1080p performance the Strix RX 470 looks to be a good way to do that.

fv5tophonors

Live Pricing: HERE

Author Bio
garfi3ld
Author: garfi3ldWebsite: https://lanoc.org
Editor-in-chief
You might call him obsessed or just a hardcore geek. Wes's obsession with gaming hardware and gadgets isn't anything new, he could be found taking things apart even as a child. When not poking around in PC's he can be found playing League of Legends, Awesomenauts, or Civilization 5 or watching a wide variety of TV shows and Movies. A car guy at heart, the same things that draw him into tweaking cars apply when building good looking fast computers. If you are interested in writing for Wes here at LanOC you can reach out to him directly using our contact form.

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