AMD delivers Smart Access Memory to its RX 5000 series GPUs with their 21.9.1 drivers

AMD delivers Smart Access Memory to its RX 5000 series GPUs with their 21.9.1 drivers

AMD’s Radeon RX 5000 series GPUs have just gotten a performance boost with Smart Access Memory

AMD has just launched its Radeon Software 21.9.1 drivers, and they have given the company’s last-generation graphics cards a much-requested feature, Smart Access Memory. 

Smart Access Memory is AMD’s Radeon implementation of the PCI Express Resizable BAR feature, and it has been used with AMD’s RX 6000 series graphics cards to deliver significant performance boosts in a variety of games. We tested this feature in late 2020 with AMD’s RX 6800 graphics card, achieving major performance increases in some titles. 

Unlike Nvidia’s RTX 30 series, AMD’s Smart Access Memory/Resizable BAR update doesn’t appear to require GPU firmware updates to function correctly, which is great news for RX 5000 series GPU owners. This addition will give RX 5000 series GPU users a useful performance boost and give developers more reason to optimise their PC games with Resizable BAR/Smart Access Memory in mind. 

AMD’s Radeon Software 21.9.1 update also delivers game-specific optimisations for Deathloop and Call of Duty: Vanguard’s Open Beta, making this driver a must for anyone interested in those games. These drivers also contain performance optimisations and support for new Vulkan API extensions, as detailed below. 

AMD delivers Smart Access Memory to its RX 5000 series GPUs with their 21.9.1 drivers

Radeon Software Adrenalin 21.9.1 Highlights

Support For

– Deathloopâ„¢
– Call of Duty® Vanguard Open Beta
– AMD Smart Access Memory on Radeonâ„¢ RX 5000 Series Graphics

Added Vulkan® Support

– VK_KHR_zero_initialize_workgroup_memory

This extension allows implementations to use the null constant initializer on shader workgroup memory variables. This in turn allows applications that run untrusted content to defeat memory-scraping attacks.

– VK_KHR_shader_integer_dot_product

This extension adds support for the integer dot product SPIR-V instructions defined in SPV_KHR_integer_dot_product. The SPV_KHR_integer_dot_product extension allows dot product operations on integer vectors with optional accumulation. In addition to allowing dot product operations for all input vector types, it also allows integer dot product for 4-component vectors of 8-bit integers that are packed into 32-bit integers.


This extension provides shaders with the capability to perform 16-bit floating-point atomic operations on buffer and workgroup memory. It additionally allows floating-point atomic minimum and maximum operations on buffer, workgroup, and image memory.


This extension allows an application to specify the contents within the render area that will not modified or can be expected to be undefined after rendering.

Fixed Issues

– Visual artifacts in PAYDAYâ„¢ 2 may be observed during gameplay on some AMD Graphics products such as Radeonâ„¢ RX 6800 XT.
Connecting two displays with large differences in resolution/refresh rates may cause flickering on Radeon RX Vega series graphics products.
On Radeon™ RX 5500 XT Graphics, higher than expected memory clock speed and power consumption may be experienced when idle and the display’s resolution and refresh rate are set to specific values such as 1080p @ 60Hz.
While playing Assassin’s Creed® Odyssey, driver timeouts or black screens may be experienced on some AMD Graphics products such as Radeon™ RX 480 Graphics when the user quickly navigates through the game menus or swiftly looks around an environment with their character.

Known Issues

– Open Broadcaster Softwareâ„¢ may continue to run in the background after a user ends a recording session and closes the application.
– Driver timeouts may be experienced while playing a game & streaming a video simultaneously on some AMD Graphics products such as Radeonâ„¢ RX 500 Series Graphics.
– AMD Radeonâ„¢ Software may crash or become unresponsive while playing some DirectX® 11 games such as PlayerUnknown’s Battlegroundsâ„¢ with multiple displays connected in extended mode.
– Playing Horizon Zero Dawnâ„¢ for an extended period may lead to a driver timeout or game crash on some AMD Graphics products such as Radeonâ„¢ RX 6700 XT.
– Enhanced Sync may cause a black screen to occur when enabled on some games and system configurations. Any users who may be experiencing issues with – Enhanced Sync enabled should disable it as a temporary workaround.
– Radeon performance metrics and logging features may intermittently report extremely high and incorrect memory clock values.

AMD Link for Windows Known Issues

– Intermittent grey frame corruption might be observed when streaming with HEVC on certain configurations via an Internet connection. A workaround is to use the AVC encoding setting instead.


AMD delivers Smart Access Memory to its RX 5000 series GPUs with their 21.9.1 drivers  

Desktop GPUs 

Radeon Product Family Compatibility

Radeon RX 6000 Series Radeon RX 6000M Series
Radeon RX Navi 5700/5600 Series Radeon VII
Radeon RX 5500 Series RX 5300M (Notebook GPU)
Radeon RX Vega Series AMD Radeon Pro Duo
Radeon RX 500 Series Graphics AMD Radeon RX 400 Series Graphics


Download Links

– Windows 10 (64-bit)

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