As you already probably know, AMD released a new series of GPUs – the RX570 and RX580 – a couple of weeks ago. Those are upgraded versions of the existing RX470 and RX480, respectively. The RX 5xx series were really anticipated by the mining community; however, those two new models received mixed reviews.
As it always happens, there is always a group of people who expect too much from new GPUs and thus get frustrated when their expectations are not met. Until not long ago, only a small number of people were able to test and review the GPUs. Now that more people got their hands on the GPUs there is a lot more information about the mining performance of the new RX 5xx.
Let’s see what we got
Can BIOS Be Modified?
This is a topic that caused the most controversy in the community at first. As we will review in a bit, the RX 5xx series have higher power consumption than their predecessor while at the same time feature the same hashrate. This made an outrage in the community because more power consumption obviously means longer ROI.
That low hashrate and high wattage combination was due to the fact that there was no way to properly configure the BIOS of the 5xx at first.
Now that some time passed, some users found ways to tweak the BIOS in order to further optimize the GPU. They found ways to both overclock and undervolt the GPU, increasing the hashrate/wattage ratio considerably.
This video explains how to do that to RX 580:
While this one is for the RX 570:
Notice that they use a modified version of the Polaris Bios Editor https://github.com/jaschaknack/PolarisBiosEditor/
You can use it with other memories too. It all comes down to straps to use:
Samsung & Micron = 1750 straps ; 1:xxxx timings
Others = 1500 straps ; 2:xxxx settings
Also, 1xxx stands for Samsung and 2xxx is for Micron chips.
Hashrate and Power Consumption
Now that we see how the 5xx can be both overclocked and undervolted, we can make a more precise comparison.
Let’s start with stock clocks.
The first tests of the boards showed those results:
- RX570: 22 MH/s on stock frequencies and 27 MH/s when overclocked. The power consumption is 115 W and 135 W respectively.
- RX580: 24 MH/s on stock frequencies and 29 MH/s when overclocked, with a power consumption of 136 W and 153 W, respectively.
This gives quite a grim outlook on the new cards because their RX 4xx counterparts output the exact same hashrate with an average 10 – 20% less power consumption (both on stock settings and when overclocked).
So, what’s the catch?
Firstly, and I will review it a bit later, the 5xx series excel when dual mining.
Secondly, let’s see what other users could find out after the cards were released to the public.
I will list the most interesting configurations I could find. Some apply only to a certain edition of the card (such as the RX 580 Nitro / MSI).
AMD Radeon RX 570 4GB & RX 580 8GB Series Mining Performance
Click to expand!
Click to expand!
It is now obvious that it is a must to both overclock and underclock the RX 580 to make it work properly. Otherwise, the most you can get from the stock one is 25 MH/s (instead of 24 MH/s) having 17.4.3 ReLive drivers and using Claymore 9.3 with a power draw of about 150 W from the wall. Not impressive.
An RX 480 Nitro does 29.5 MH/s when overclocked. A RX 580 stands a chance against it only when configured properly.
According to several reviews, the RX5xx series truly outperform the RX4xx when dual mining.
It looks like after all, those two sets of models have different architectures. The 5xx might be a bit more than just a downgrade of the widely-loved 4xx.
Some tests of the RX 580 gave those results:
- Ethereum: 30.5 Mh/s
- Decred: 1130 MH/s
- VDDC: 0.877
- Core: 1300
- Mem: 2100
- Mem voltage: 0.9
- Strap: Custom mix
- Mem Errors: 0/min
- Power Usage: 125W
It can also give about 30.5 MH/s + 1450 MH/s if power and voltage are left as they came from factory. However, power usage increases to about 15% too.
Windows or Linux?
According to one renowned reviewer, it is better to mine with the RX 5xx on Linux, at least for now. He states that Linux drivers work better than Windows ones.
Cooling is probably one of the best things about the 5xx series. Both the RX570 and the RX580 are bigger and have better cooling system than their predecessors. They use more copper too. Just like the 4xx, the 5xx GPUs come with two coolers of the same size and there were no complaints about temperature issues to the date.
Both RX570 and RX580 are praised for being more silent than their older counterparts too.
Price Change Prospects
Some people of the mining community managed to get the most of their 5xx and are happy with their purchase; others – not so much. If you think that the 5xx are not for you, then you might want to buy some 4xx while there are in stock.
You see, it is still not clear for how long the 4xx series will be available for sale. Some sources claim that 4xx series are no longer manufactured and will disappear from the shelves quite soon. If that is the case, then now it might be the right time to purchase a couple.
However, other miners say that it is a good idea to wait a little until the 4xx will naturally drop in price. While their point seems valid, I am more prone to think that the 4xx won’t be getting any cheaper anytime soon. The reason is simple – the 5xx are not a lot better than the 4xx (at least according to popular opinion), therefore I don’t expect a lot of people to run after 5xx GPUs.
Should you buy it? I guess the 5xx are no worse than the 4xx. Some community members proved that the 5xx are even better than their predecessors.
Since RX5xx’s have reasonably low price, it might be a good idea to get them for your rig if you are buying one. RX 5xx GPUs work stable as they are now, and one never knows what surprises further patches and fixes will bring. Who knows, maybe the new architecture will allow us to overclock them even more or save more power.
Also, the RX 5xx might be easier to sell in the future, since they are definitely better for gaming than their 4xx predecessors.
Now, if you do have a rig of 4xx already, then it definitely a good idea to stick to it. The RX5xx’s – even when properly configured – are not superior enough to the 4xx, at least in my opinion. They are good, but the 4xx proved to work wonder, and it might be a great idea to keep your 4xx rigs, at least for now.
Thank you for reading. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are welcome.
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