The budgeter's budget card
Here we go again. AMD’s RX 470 is barely cooling its heels on store shelves yet in walks the AMD Radeon RX 460 already. Team Red’s latest graphics card is the epitome of a budget card, with a ridiculously low $109 MSRP. With a sub-75 watt power draw in its reference configuration, the RX 460 can draw all of its power from your PC’s motherboard, no extra power connectors required. That makes it an ideal option for giving a prebuilt “big box” PC beefed-up gaming capabilties.
But just like its bigger brother, the RX 460 is rolling out with a wide array of customized cards from partners such as Asus, Gigabyte, MSI, PowerColor, Sapphire, and XFX. That means there’s a version of this card for every sub-$150 budget.
Here’s a look at every RX 460 you can buy right now.
But first, the specs
AMD's specs chart will give you an idea of the difference between AMD's dreams for the RX 460 and the reality of what's rolling out from graphics card makers. The card designed with the e-sports enthusiast in mind. The card is meant to hit 90fps with high settings for games such as League of Legends, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Overwatch, and Dota 2. It can also support H.264 video streaming up to 120fps at 1080p, which comes in handy for game streaming as well as living room duty in an home theater PC.
That said, the card can also handle traditional gaming if you turn the graphics settings down to Medium at 1080p resolution.
PowerColor Red Dragon RX 460 2GB
The 2GB Red Dragon from PowerColor ($110 on Newegg) is as close to the stock version of the RX460 as you're going to see. The card features 7Gbps memory speed, a 1212MHz boost clock, and 896 stream processors. For ports, you'll get the RX 460 standard: one each of DVI-D, HDMI, and DisplayPort.
But whereas the reference design is a pint-sized card, this device is still standard size, despite having just one fan. The good news: PowerColor's card draws its power right from the motherboard, no extra power connectors required.
Sapphire Radeon RX 460 100409-2GOCL 2GB
Another 6-pin-free option, Sapphire's 2GB Radeon RX 460 ($120 on Newegg) sports a reference maximum clock of 1210MHz. Unlike PowerColor's card, Sapphire's features dual fans, which should help this power-sipping card stay even cooler.
Gigabyte Radeon RX 460 Windforce OC 2GB
While AMD's suggested price for the RX 460 falls in the $110 range, the early models really targeting a $120 price, PowerColor excepted. Another 2GB special, the claim to fame for Gigabyte's RX 460 Windforce OC ($120 on Newegg) is its gold plated DisplayPort and HDMI ports. There's also a dual-link DVI-D that swaps gold plating for gamers' tears.
This dual-fan, dual-slot card is another motherboard special, with no need for an extra power pin. That makes it especially versatile, opening compatibility to a wide variety of PCs.
Asus Dual-fan Radeon RX 460 2GB OC Edition
We've almost reached escape velocity for the $120 cards. The standard out-of-the-box speed for the Asus Radeon RX 460 OC ($120 on Newegg) is 1224MHz in gaming mode or 1244MHz in OC mode. Even better, it doesn't require a six-pin power connector—an interesting feat considering its high overclocks.
Gigabyte Radeon RX 460 Windforce OC
Another gold-plated special, the beefed-up Gigabyte Windforce OC ($130 on Newegg) is the lowest price we've seen for a RX 460 with 4GB of memory. While the 2GB RX 460s work perfectly with e-sports games, if you want to play traditional games, upgrading to a 4GB model is a worthwhile upgrade.
Gigabyte's dual-fan, dual-slot, 4GB special is the shortest card in the lineup thus far at 7.52-inches. It also doesn't have a 6-pin power connector meaning it can draw power from the motherboard. In fact, it's very power efficient, with a real TDP power claim of just 55W.
XFX Radeon RX 460 DirectX 12 RX-460P2DFG 2GB
This XFX Radeon 460 ($130 on Newegg) is basically the same basic card as the $120 OC version we talked about earlier. But for an extra $10 you get a card specially tuned to support CrossFireX—a great feature if you feel like spending $260 and going dual-GPU with these moderately misbehaving boys. Just bring your extra power connectors, because motherboard power is not enough for this card.
(Pictured: $120 version of XFX's RX 460)
Sapphire Nitro Radeon RX 460 100409NT-4GOCL 4GB
Sapphire's Nitro Radeon RX 460 ($140 on Newegg) comes equipped with a visual design similar to the Sapphire Nitro+ RX 480 we reviewed earlier this year. It hits up to 1250MHz speeds with the help of a six-pin power connector.
At this price point, however, you'll get more bang for your buck opting for a GeForce GTX 950 over a Radeon RX 460, even if the GTX 950 you choose only has 2GB of memory. Nvidia's cards need a 6-pin power connector, but so do all of these pricier RX 460 variants.
ASUS ROG STRIX Radeon RX 460 4GB OC Edition
Now we’re getting serious. The Asus ROG Strix version of the RX 460 ($140 on Newegg) comes with dual “wing-blade” fans and direct-GPU contact heatpipes on the heat sink. There’s also a 4-pin GPU-controlled header you can connect to a system fan for even more cooling when you need it. Just be ready with that 6-pin power connector.
XFX Radeon RX 460 DirectX 12 RX-460P4DFG5 4GB
XFX’s card features two fans sitting on a standard-issue aluminum heatsink. The fans can speed up or slow down based on the performance load, and they pop out quite easily if you ever need to do an in-house replacement. Again, however, at this price you're probably better off buying a GTX 950.