AMD Radeon RX 5700 Series Overclocking

Radeon RX 5700 Overclocking

Before we show you our highest stable overclocking results, first let’s talk about what is allowed and what is not.  By default, the voltage is set at “970” in MSI Afterburner. This allows the 0.975V that is the default voltage.  You can adjust the voltage slider in MSI Afterburner all the way up to 1.300V on this video card.  You can also lower the voltage all the way down to 0.800V on this video card as well.  We tried both undervolting and overvolting to hone in the test temperatures and highest clock speed.

When we tried overvolting we found that this just hurt our clock speed.  It actually caused the clock speed to lower because this was exceeding the board power of the video card.  We then tried undervolting to see if we could shave off some temperature.  However, when undervolting we started getting artifacts at 0.912V.  The voltage just wasn’t high enough at that point to maintain a stable frequency.   

Therefore, both undervolting and overvolting just didn’t help us with this video card.  We found the best thing to do was just leave voltage alone on this reference Radeon RX 5700 altogether.  We also found that with the Radeon RX 5700 the highest Power Limit we could set was +20.

In the picture above you can see what we found as the highest stable overclock.  Voltage is at default, Power Limit is at +20 and Core Clock is at 1850MHz and Memory Clock at 910MHz with a forced consistent 60% fan speed.

This is where we hit a limit that is imposed by AMD.  We physically could not raise the Core Clock beyond the 1850MHz setting.  The default remember is 1750MHz.  This is a hard limit imposed by AMD in hardware.  Without BIOS table hacking and other means, this is as high as you will be allowed to push the core clock no matter what.  In addition, the memory clock is also locked at 930MHz maximum setting.  You physically cannot raise the memory slider past 930MHz, remember the default is 875MHz.  These hard limits don’t leave us with a lot of options. 

In order to try and eek out as much clock speed as we can, we tried overvolting at the 1850MHz setting.  As we mentioned above this just caused the clock speed to diminish, hurting the clock speed because board power is being exceeded.  We then tried undervolting, and just got artifacts.  Therefore, 1850MHz was as high as we could set this video card, and that is all there is to it.  On the memory we could not hit the maximum of 930MHz, we did get artifacts and crashing.  Our maximum memory clock speed we could hit was 910MHz.  So let’s see what this translates to in the real world.

Overclocking Frequency

This graph does a great job at showing that even though we are locked at 1850MHz setting, it does yield a real-world positive overclocking result.  The overclock is between 1765MHz-1785MHz versus the 1665-1685MHz at default.  This is around a 100MHz overclock, and it is very consistent.  Where the default average was 1677MHz, the overclocked average is now 1780MHz.  That is a 6% clock speed improvement.  What’s more, it now exceeds the “Boost Clock” of 1725MHz. 

On the memory side of things, 910MHz equates to 14,560MHz versus the default 875MHz which is 14,000MHz.  That raises the bandwidth from 448GB/sec to 466GB/sec.  For the fan, we set it at 60% to ensure heat would not hold us back.  However, this was extremely loud, and one would really have a hard time keeping the fan so loud at all times.  This is not ideal to be honest; the cooling has a hard time keeping up when overclocking. 

You can see at 60% fan speed our GPU Temperature is 57c when overclocked, and the Junction Temperature is 69c.  These are good temps, but to achieve that we have to deal with an annoyingly loud fan that no one in their right mind would leave like this for an extended period of time.  Total System Wattage rose to 298W from 292W.    

Our Final Overclock we will use in the game testing is:
1780MHz GPU
14,560MHz Memory

Brent Justice
Former managing editor of GPUs at HardOCP for 18 years, Brent Justice has been reviewing computer components since the late 90s, educated in the art and method of the computer hardware review, he brings experience, knowledge, and hands-on testing with a gamer-oriented and hardware enthusiast perspective. You can follow him on Twitter - @Brent_Justice You can sub to his YouTube channel - Justice Gaming You can check out his computer builds on KIT - @BrentJustice

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