Recently launched, the Radeon RX 460 is an entry video card form the new AMD RX400 series, based on Polaris architecture. Let’s analyze the 4 GiB model from XFX and check how it goes against its competitors.
The Radeon RX 460 chip (codenamed Baffin) is based on Polaris architectures, the same used on the Radeon RX 480, but is a value model, with more modest specifications. According to AMD, it is targeted at casual gamers and “E-sports” players. Like its big brother, is is manufactured under 14 nm “FinFET” technology, which grants it higher energetic efficiency than the earlier generation.
The reference Radeon RX 460 has 896 processing cores, with 1,090 MHz base clock and 1,200 MHz turbo clock, 128 bit memory bus, 7 GHz memory clock (112 GiB/s memory bandwidth), and 75 W TDP.
This XFX model comes with a small (1,7%) overclocking, running at 1,220 MHz turbo clock. The tested card has 4 GiB of GDDR5 memory, running at 7 GHz, like on the reference model. So, keep in mind that the results obtained are valid for the tested card; other models with different clock rates can show slightly different performance.

Figure 1 shows the Radeon RX 460 from XFX (RX-460P4D).

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 1: the box of the XFX Radeon RX 460

Figure 2 unveils the tested video card.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 2: the XFX Radeon RX 460 (model RX-460P4D)

The MSRP for the Radeon RX 460 is USD 109, which means its direct competitor is the GeForce GTX 750 Ti.
While there are actually Radeon RX 460 models that cost USD 109 at the USA, the tested model costs USD 140, because it is a 4 GiB model. That puts this video card competing directly in price with some GeForce GTX 950 models.
So, in our tests, we compared the performance of the 4 GiB XFX Radeon RX 460 (RX-460P4D) to a reference GeForce GTX 750 Ti, but also to a GeForce GTX 950 from Gigabyte. Besides that, we also included a Radeon RX 360 from HIS, so we can have an idea of the performance difference between two entry video cards from different generations.
In the table below, we compare the main specs from the video cards we included in this review. Prices were researched at Newegg.com for this article.

Video card

Core clock

Turbo clock

Effective memory clock

Memory bus

Memory bandwidth

Memory

Processing cores

TDP

DirectX

Price

Radeon RX 460

1,090 MHz

1,220 MHz

7.0 GHz

128 bit

112.0 GB/s

4 GiB GDDR5

896

75 W

12

USD 139

GeForce GTX 950

1,102 MHz

1,279 MHz

6.6 GHz

128 bit

105.6 GB/s

2 GiB GDDR5

768

90 W

12.1

USD 135

GeForce GTX 750 Ti

1,020 MHz

1,085 MHz

5.4 GHz

128 bit

86.4 GB/s

2 GiB GDDR5

640

60 W

11.2

USD 105

Radeon R7 360

1,070 MHz

1,070 MHz

6.5 GHz

128 bit

104.0 GB/s

2 GiB GDDR5

768

100 W

12

USD 90

Now let’s take a closer look to the tested XFX Radeon RX 460 video card.
[nextpage title=”The Radeon R7 360″]
In Figure 3, you can see the video connectors of the Radeon RX 460 (RX-460P4P). It has one DVI-D, one HDMI 2.0b and one DisplayPort 1.4 connectors.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 3: video connectors

In Figure 4 you see the top of the card. It uses a six-pin PCI Express power connector.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 4: top view

In Figure 5 you see the rear of the card.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 5: rear view

A highlight of this card from XFX is that the fans are just fitted in slots, and can be easily removed from their places (whilst keeping attached by their cables) for cleaning.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 6: removable fans

Figure 7 shows the solder side of the RX 460. There are no memory chips on this side. You may notice the PCB is way shorter than the cooler, which have a metallic plate to make the video card longer.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 7: solder side

Figure 8 unveils the Radeon RX 460 with the main cooler removed. It has two heatpipes and two 90 mm fans. The cooler touches only the GPU.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 8: the Radeon RX 460 with the cooler removed

In Figure 9 you see the Radeon RX 460 without the cooler. This circuit has four phases for the GPU plus one phase for the memory chips. You can also see the four memory chips.
Another interesting detail is that the PCI Express x16 connector uses only half the lanes, so the video card works up to x8 speed.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 9: the Radeon RX 460

In Figure 10 you see the “Baffin” chip, which is manufactured under 14 nm technology.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 10: Baffin chip

Figure 9 shows one of the memory chips present at the Radeon RX 460. It is a Micron chip with 5YA47 D9SSX markings, with 8 Gib (1 GiB) capacity. Unfortunately, we were not able to find more information about those chips.

Radeon RX 460 ReviewFigure 11: memory chip

[nextpage title=”How We Tested”]
During our benchmarking sessions, we used the configuration listed below. Between the tests, the only variable component was the video card being tested.
Hardware Configuration

  • CPU: Athlon X4 880K running at 4.4 GHz
  • Motherboard: ASRock FM2A88X Extreme 6+
  • CPU Cooler: stock
  • Memory: 16 GiB DDR3-2133, four G.Skill Ripjaws Z F3-17000CL9Q-16GBZH 4 GiB memory modules configured at 2,133 MHz dual channel
  • Boot drive: Kingston HyperX Savage 480 GB
  • Video Monitor: Philips 236VL
  • Power Supply: Corsair CX500M

Operating System Configuration

  • Windows 10 Home 64-bit
  • NTFS
  • Desktop video resolution: 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz

Driver Versions

  • AMD driver version: 16.5.2.1
  • NVIDIA driver version: 358.91

Software Used

Error Margin
We adopted a 3% error margin; thus, differences below 3% cannot be considered relevant. In other words, products with a performance difference below 3% should be considered as having similar performance.
[nextpage title=”3DMark”]

3DMark is a program with a set of several 3D benchmarks. Fire Strike benchmark measures DirectX 11 performance and is targeted to high-end gaming computers, while Sky Diver also measures DirectX 11 performance being aimed at average computers. The Cloud Gate benchmark measures DirectX 10 performance.

Radeon RX 460 Review

On Fire Strike, the Radeon RX 460 was 10% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 26% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 34% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

Radeon RX 460 Review

On the Sky Diver benchmark, the Radeon RX 460 was 6% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 18% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 19% faster than the Radeon R7 360.
Radeon RX 460 Review

On Cloud Gate, the Radeon RX 460 was 4% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 6% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 10% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

[nextpage title=”Gaming Performance (part 1)”]

Battlefield 4

Battlefield 4 is one of the most popular games of the Battlefield franchise, being released in 2013. It is based on the Frostbite 3 engine, which is DirectX 11. In order to measure performance using this game, we walked our way through the first mission, measuring the number of frames per second (fps) three times using FRAPS. We ran this game at Full HD, setting overall image quality at “medium.”
The results below are expressed in fps and they are the mean between the three collected results.
Radeon RX 460 Review

On Battlefield 4, the Radeon RX 460 was 14% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 21% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 38% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

Dirt Rally

Dirt Rally is an off-road racing game released in April 2015, using Ego engine. To measure performance using this game, we ran the performance test included in the game, in Full HD resolution and image quality configured as “medium” and MSAA off.
The results below are expressed in fps.
Radeon RX 460 Review

In this game, the Radeon RX 460 performed similarly to the GeForce GTX 950, was 7% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 34% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

Dying Light

Dying Light is an open-world horror game launched in January 2015, using the Chrome Engine 6. We tested the performance at this game with all quality options as “high” and Full HD resolution, measuring three times the frame rate using FRAPS.
The results below are expressed in fps and they are the mean between the three collected results.
Radeon RX 460 Review
On Dying Light the Radeon RX 460 was 9% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 36% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 55% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

Grand Theft Auto V

Grand Theft Auto V, or simply GTA V, is a open-world action game released for PCs in April of 2015 and uses the RAGE engine. In order to measure the performance on this game, we ran the performance test of the game (the plane portion), measuring the frame rate with FRAPS. We ran GTA V at Full HD, with image quality set as “high” and MSAA as 2x.

The results below are expressed in frames per second.

Radeon RX 460 Review

On GTA V, the Radeon RX 460 was 13% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 26% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 37% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

Mad Max

Mad Max is an open-world action game launched in September of 2015, using the Avalanche engine. In order to measure the performance using this game, we ran its intro, measuring the framerate with FRAPS three times. We ran the game at Full HD, with image quality set as “normal”.

The results below are expressed in fps and they are the mean between the three collected results.Radeon RX 460 Review

On Mad Max, the Radeon RX 460 was 27% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 7% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 26% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

Rise of the Tomb Rider

Rise of the Tomb Rider is an adventure/action game launched in January of 2016, based on Foundation engine. In order to measure the performance using this game, we ran the benchmark included on it, using Full HD resolution and graphics quality “medium”.
The results below are expressed in frames per second.
Radeon RX 460 Review
On Rise of the Tomb Rider, the Radeon RX 460 was 18% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 24% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 34% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is an open-world RPG released in May of 2015 and based on the REDengine 3 engine. In order to measure the performance on this game, we walked around at the first scene of the game, measuring the frame rate with FRAPS three times. We ran the game at Full HD with image quality set to “medium.”

The results below are expressed in fps and they are the mean between the three collected results.

Radeon RX 460 Review

In this game, the Radeon RX 460 was 6% slower than the GeForce GTX 950, 31% faster than the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, and 44% faster than the Radeon R7 360.

[nextpage title=”Conclusions”]
The entry level video card market, targeted to budget gaming computers, is one of the most important ones, since not every gamer want or can buy a high-end video card. So, our first conclusion is that even a simple and inexpensive video card like the Radeon RX 460 can run recent games in Full HD and intermediate video quality with a good framerate, allowing a satisfying gaming experience.
Compared to the Radeon R7 360, which is its predecessor in this segment, the Radeon RX 460 evolved a lot: it was faster on all the tests, even with a lower TDP.
Compare to its direct competitor, the GeForce GTX 750 Ti, the Radeon RX 460 also proved to be faster on all the tests, being a better option (besides being compatible with DirectX 12). Actually, the XFX Radeon RX 460 performed close to the GeForce GTX 950.
So, the Radeon RX 460 from XFX proved to be an excellent new actor on the value/entry video card scenario. The question, however, is the price you will find it at your dealer: if it costs near a GeForce GTX 750 Ti, the Radeon RX 460 is a better deal. But if its price is close to a GeForce GTX 950, in this case the NVIDIA card is a better choice.