ASUS ROG Strix RX Vega 56 Review


ASUS Strix RX Vega 56 Review


Our initial experiences of the RX Vega GPU demonstrated how well the AMD Radeon had returned to the fray as a genuine contender. 

When we reviewed the PowerColor Red Devil we found it to be the best Vega 64 that you'll probably come across, and certainly something worthy of consideration. However, like the sign above the door says, we are all about taking a more affordable graphics card and squeezing the absolute maximum from it, in the hopes that we can attain the performance of the next model up in the range. So if you're after a Vega 56 rather than the more expensive Vega 64, the Strix could just fit the bill.

We say 'could just', but the truth is it most definitely does.

The Vega 56 GPU is already a very capable basis for a graphics card, and the performance is up there with the GTX 1070 Ti, not an inconsiderable card itself. With the addition of the Strix trimmings - DirectCU cooler, RGB lighting, AURA Sync connector and fan headers - it already steps up into something that would require serious consideration. With some careful overclocking it moves from definitely on your shortlist to pretty much at the top.

It might seem like we're damning with faint praise to suggest that the combination of simple ingredients makes the Strix Vega 56 into something so desirable, but in truth that's what we have. A great GPU made better with the addition of one of the best coolers on the market, and then sprinkled with enough additional elements to step it up above the competition. After all, nobody ever complained that Steak and Chips wasn't tasty. Everything ASUS have put their DirectCU cooler onto has benefited from its inclusion and the Strix Vega 56 is no exception. The card runs cool and quiet at stock but, most importantly, with the correct overclocking it ends up amongst the coolest Vega cards around.

That overclocking has to be seen to be believed. With the voltages at stock and just increasing the power target the card works pretty much as you might expect. However, lower the voltage slightly to help keep the temperatures in check and smooth out the power delivery and it absolutely flies. You can just keep turning up the power target and the card responds with blistering clock speeds and soaring frame rates. What makes it jaw-droppingly impressive is how, because of the lower voltages, the overclock ended up both cooler and requiring lower power than the stock card, which was already suitably good.

To summarise. The Strix is seriously fast out of the box, and with some judicious overclocking ends up faster, cooler and more efficient. It's the holy trinity of what we do. No downside, only positives. It has to win our OC3D Enthusiast award.

ASUS Strix RX Vega 56 Review  

Discuss the ASUS Strix RX Vega 56 on the OC3D Forums.

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Most Recent Comments

16-12-2017, 01:29:06

Seriously tempted to buy a Vega 56 solely because of Freesync - saving 100€+ on the monitor is kind of a big deal.Quote

16-12-2017, 02:25:11

Wow those temps and power draw results are seriously interesting! AMDs stock profiles are trash. Interested to find out other peoples OC results. Because if this is consistent then AMD are really making themselves look worse by running more hot and consuming more power than they need.

Also I really want to suggest testing in DX11 for Warhammer 1 and 2. DX12 in that game is very very inconsistent and more often than not worse performance even with AMD. It's hit or miss with AMD and definitely does worse on any Nvidia card.Quote

16-12-2017, 03:08:14

The cons is that the top MOSFET is still not fully covered by the cooling plate of the heatsink, resulting in extremely high vrm temp on that area just like what guru3d has shown on its vega64 strix review.Quote

16-12-2017, 09:44:33

If there is ever anything for a gamer and enthusiast to be interested in with Vega, it's what Tom has done here. 65°C at 1600Mhz is excellent. Power consumption is high, but if temperatures and performance is consistent and good then it's not a deal breaker for the majority of PC enthusiasts. Performance still isn't great when compared to the 1070Ti, but it would be a fun card to tweak. It's largely not worth it considering its current £560 price tag (that's what I paid for my faster 11Gbps GTX 1080), but it would be a fun project for those who have a lot of money to spare and are more interested in tweaking than gaming. Vega is more of a passion project than a good all round gaming card.Quote

17-12-2017, 01:09:41

Asus is really knocking it out of the park lately with their Strix cards....hell their Strix motherboards too. I've always been an Asus fan but they really just seem to be upping their game lately.Quote

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