Almost simultaneously as with Nvidia and their RTX 4060 Ti, AMD has chosen to release their 8GB, 1080p card. It's not quite the same specifications, because the actual corresponding Nvidia card is a non-Ti version, and that won't be released for a few months.
Fortunately for AMD, this shows their product in an even better light, because the Nvidia card costs 50% more, but by no means gives 50% more performance, in fact the Radeon RX 7600 is able to beat it in several cases, and the same goes for Intel's A770 series of graphics cards, which also has twice as much VRAM.
And the price is steep, $269 worth of expensive. That said, it pains me that entry level graphics cards cost over $200. I know I'm old, but the price is high, inflation or not. If you go up in price, an RX 6650 XT card is quite cheap right now, but it has neither AV1 support nor DisplayPort 2.1 functionality. On the other hand, AMD does not hide in their press material that the 32 Compute Units and 2048 Stream Processors are accompanied by a significantly better Ray-Tracing performance, as with the RDNA 3 platform, 64 dedicated AI accelerators have also been added. It will be fun to see what third party cards will cost, because the versions and not least the price of them, are unknown at the time of writing this review.
The RX 7600 is in the same aesthetic style as its big brothers; black, industrial, and very clean lines. It's a work tool, and doesn't feature unnecessarily large fans, RGB, or a dual BIOS. Instead, there are two fans, making it extremely compact, and best of all, it only needs a single power connector. The cooling is surprisingly good, the noise is drowned out by the fans from the rest of the system as it's only 32dB, and the card maintains 36-degrees of temperature in normal use, and a surprisingly low 54-degrees at full load. So, there should be potential for overclocking, if we look at the temperature numbers in isolation. It's also built on the Navi33 GPU that maxes out at 2625 MHz and runs on a 128-bit interface.
Unfortunately, it's virtually impossible to run anything today without large amounts of RAM. In fact, we're at the point where I'd say 12GB should be the minimum, if not 16GB for cards intended for 1440p gaming. I'm actually seriously worried that the many poorly optimised PC games on the market, The Last of Us being a prime example, means that it's hard to get a reasonable resolution unless you're rolling in money. But AMD should be commended for being honest in the press briefing material that less than 8GB of RAM is no longer realistic, even in 1080p. It goes one step further, not being shy about openly showing that they are targeting users with GTX 1060, RTX 2060 and perhaps also those with RX 6000 series cards.
The software is, as always, AMD Adrenalin, which fortunately doesn't require user profiles and other nonsense, and there are as many or as few settings as you want. However, I wonder why the AMD Ryzen Master software has a simplified interface and you can change it to advanced, where Adrenalin is always just an advanced interface, because there are so many things to adjust. Personally, I mostly use the upscaling, FSR 2.1, which can often be switched on in individual game's settings, and if not, it doesn't matter, because unlike many other upscaling options, FSR 2.1 doesn't require implementation by the developer, the card does it all by itself.
Once that's in place, the interesting part is the benchmarks. We tested on an AM5 motherboard with a 7950X AMD CPU, 32GB DDR5 RAM, and everything was run from NVMe drives. Everything is on maximum quality setting too, as life is too short for poor image quality.
Total War: Warhammer III
Red Dead Redemption 2
Assassin's Creed Valhalla
Far Cry 6 behaved really strangely, starting the benchmark in the wrong place, and it looks like it loads the graphics while the benchmark is running instead of before.
So, we get what AMD has promised, even with the real possibility of 1440p as well, as here you don't have to settle for less than maximum quality when gaming in 1080p. But boy, I would love to have a 1080p card that costs just a little less.