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Friday, April 12, 2024

AMD Radeon RX 6400 graphics cards are coming soon

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AMD’s entry level Radeon RX 6400 looks set for a retail release, and though there hasn’t yet been any official confirmation from AMD, some resellers have jumped the gun. Several stores in countries including China, Argentina and Singapore have already listed the baby of AMD’s range.

The existence of the RX 6400 was already known. It was launched alongside the underwhelming RX 6500 XT. At the time it was announced to be an OEM card only, with no plans for a retail release. That appears to have changed as a Singapore retailer (via @momomo_us) has a picture of a retail MSI Aero ITX card and its packaging.

The MSI Radeon RX 6400 Aero ITX comes with 4GB of GDDR6 memory with a 64-bit interface. Outputs consist of DisplayPort 1.4a and HDMI 2.1 ports. It comes in with a dual-slot form factor that’s cooled by a single-fan.

The GPU itself is a Navi 24 variant. It’s a cut down version of the GPU that powers RX 6500 XT cards. It includes 768 Shader units and comes with a typical board power of 53W, which means it doesn’t require external PCIe power connectors. That alone is appealing to many users. It also means that low profile or single slot cooling will be enough to keep the GPU cool.

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Sadly, the RX 6400 inherits the weaknesses of the RX 6500 XT. It lacks a fully featured media encoder and decoder which will limit its appeal to HTPC users. There’s also its limited dual display support and its much derided PCIe x4 limitation. The latter is particularly noteworthy given that the RX 6400 is a card that’s more likely to find its way into PCIe 2.0 or 3.0 systems than PCIe 4.0 ones.

Its gaming performance isn’t expected to blow us away either. In fact it’ll be a tough sell when compared to the integrated graphics of AMDs own relatively powerful APUs. So, other than as a necessary replacement for a dead graphics card in an older system, it’s pretty tough to see how the 6400 will truly appeal to many users.

However, its low power consumption, reasonable performance in older games and its ease of installation in systems with weak power supplies will see it fill a niche. Just don’t expect to be playing Cyberpunk 2077 with full ray tracing at 4K. Although running it at 72p might be possible! Stick to Angry Birds or Candy Crush Saga or perhaps a bit of CS:GO and it’ll be fine.

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