Sapphire Radeon RX 580 Nitro+ review: AMD battles for PC gaming's sweet spot, again

Polaris refined and repurposed still kicks ass.

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Hitman

Hitman’s Glacier engine historically favored AMD hardware. It’s no surprise; Hitman’s a flagship AMD Gaming Evolved title. That said, GeForce cards certainly don’t slouch after recent driver optimizations. We test in both DirectX 11 and DirectX 12 with SSAO disabled.

hitman 1440 Brad Chacos/IDG
hitman 1080 Brad Chacos/IDG

The Radeon RX 580 Nitro+ again delivers a mere few frames-per-second increase compared to its predecessor, and a sizable lead over the RX 570, though it draws fairly even with the overclocked 6GB GTX 1060.

Aside from the RX 580’s paltry performance uptick, the most noticeable thing here is the 3GB GTX 1060’s DirectX 12 performance. DX12 tends to hit memory pretty hard, and it shows in cards with less than 4GB of RAM. EVGA’s 3GB card stutters heavily when you flip the DX12 switch, which in turn drags down its overall frame rate.

Next page: Rise of the Tomb Raider

At a Glance
  • The Radeon RX 580 is basically the Radeon RX 480 with a new name, but that still makes it the best mainstream graphics card around. Sapphire's custom Nitro+ design is stellar.

    Pros

    • Great 1080p, good 1440p, and solid VR gameplay
    • Compelling price to performance
    • Sapphire's Nitro+ customizations look and work great

    Cons

    • Lags far behind GTX 1060 in power efficiency
    • Basically a rebrand of the RX 480 with slightly higher clock speeds
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