XFX AMD Radeon RX 460 4GB Double Dissipation full review
The AMD Radeon RX 460 4GB Double Dissipation from XFX is a reasonably priced graphics card featuring AMD’s latest graphics technology and optimised for playing the latest AAA games at 1080p resolution.
See also: Best graphics cards to buy right now
The RX 460 comes in at the bottom of a range of three GPUs based on the 4th generation of AMD’s Graphics Core Next (GCN) technology and brings with it all of the main technologies of the more expensive cards, but at a much lower price. This means you get Freesync, DirectX 12 and Vulkan support as well as Virtual Super Resolution and HDR ready graphics.
XFX AMD Radeon RX460 4GB Double Dissipation review: Features and design
XFX has taken AMD’s reference design and added an almost negligible 20MHz overclock, but the hardware has been enhanced in several more significant ways.
Our review sample is XFX’s Double Dissipation model, featuring two ‘silent but deadly’ 90mm fans which adjust their speed to keep the system as quiet as possible, shutting off entirely when they’re not needed. Even when blowing at full speed, this card remains relatively quiet.
These fans clip into place and can easily be detached (although not fully removed) without tools, allowing free access to the heatsink below for cleaning purposes.
XFX AMD Radeon RX460 4GB Double Dissipation review: Installation
The card features a standard-height design which should fit in most standard PC cases, but do be aware that it is both longer and wider than the smallest RX 460 boards you’ll find available, so check the capacity of your case if you have a compact or small form-factor PC.
Its dual-slot design means you’ll need adequate room inside your case as well as two spare slots at the rear. It’s also a few centimetres longer than a standard RX 460 board, although at 238mm you’re unlikely to have any issues with anything but the smallest cases.
These extended dimensions make room for the card’s large heatpipe-based cooler and the twin fans mounted above it. These provide additional cooling over a single-fan system while generating less noise than a single fan, which would have to spin faster to maintain the same temperatures.
If you do need something physically smaller, XFX also makes single-slot versions of the card which also feature a single fan design and are short enough to fit in compact system cases.
Unlike comparable Nvidia-based products, you can also use RX 460 cards in a dual-card CrossFire setup. We wouldn’t recommend designing your system around such a configuration, but if you end up getting two for Christmas, then why not?
Designed to be compatible with less expensive PC systems, the card requires only a 400W power supply as a minimum, although a 450W model is recommended. The card requires a single 6-pin power connector, but if your power supply doesn’t have one, you can use the handy Molex power adapter cable, included in the box, to hook it up to a spare hard drive connector instead. That said, with a power rating of only 75W, you’ll probably be able to use this card just fine without using the 6-pin power connector at all, although it’s there if you need more headroom for overclocking.
XFX AMD Radeon RX460 4GB Double Dissipation review: Performance
As stated earlier, the RX 460 is designed for competent gaming at 1080p resolution and our test results show that it does indeed meet these requirements. You won’t always be able to select ‘Ultra’ quality settings, but you should be able to enjoy new game releases with smooth gameplay and decent visual quality.
Featuring 14 Compute Units and 896 Stream processors, the RX 460 offers less than half the computing power of the more expensive RX 470. Iin real-world tests it does appear to offer about 50 per cent of the performance when pushed hard. For example, the Asus ROG Strix RX 470 averages 118fps in Alien Isolation at 1080p with Ultra settings, while the XFX RX 460 4GB achieves 67fps.
As both of these results are well above the 60Hz limit of a standard monitor, the RX 460 will give you just as good a gaming experience at 1080p for considerably less money.
However, switching to Thief in DirectX mode at the same 1080p ‘Ultra’ settings, we see average frame rates of 56fps and 43.1fps respectively, indicating that the RX 470 is delivering a noticeably better experience than the RX 460 although the RX 460 is performing much better than half as well as the more expensive card.
These differences will become more noticeable if you use a gaming monitor with a high refresh rate and, of course, if you attempt to play at resolutions higher than 1080p. If this is what you need, we would recommend saving up for the RX 470 as it will certainly be able to deliver a higher-quality gaming experience than an RX 460 on a 1080p monitor.
Another big difference, between the RX 460 and the RX 470 is that the latter is designed to be capable of running VR games. The RX 460, however, most certainly is not. Looking at the Steam VR benchmark, we achieve a ‘Low’ VR rating, a VR Quality score of 0.5 and a ‘Not Ready’ designation.
XFX AMD Radeon RX460 4GB Double Dissipation review: Price
With an otherwise equivalent RX 470 costing around £35 more, it’s the obvious upsell from the RX 460 and one that’s well worth considering if you can afford it.
However, the really strong competition comes from the Nvidia camp, in the form of the GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti boards; the most recent models based on the company’s Pascal architecture and released in direct competition with the RX 460.
Price-wise, the RX 460 falls somewhere between the two, but the performance is a different story. In our tests, even the lower-spec GTX 1050 2GB is able to beat the 4GB RX 460 at some 1080p games while costing significantly less. A 4GB GTX 1050 Ti delivers even more speed for around £25 on top of the price of the RX 460.
XFX AMD Radeon RX460 4GB Double Dissipation review: Should I buy one?
With so many graphics cards on the market it can be difficult to decide which is the best for you. XFX alone makes no fewer than nine boards based on the AMD RX 460 chip. If you want to go with AMD, we’d recommend saving up a little for an RX 470, but at the moment Nvidia’s GTX 1050 and GTX 1050 Ti cards seem to offer a better alternative for budget gaming.
Zotac GeForce GTX 1050 Ti review: Benchmarks
Below you can see how the AMD Radeon RX460 4GB Compares to the Palit GTX 1050 and Zotac GTX 1050 Ti, and we've also included the 1060, 1070, RX 480 and even the older 980 Ti just to show how these new budget cards compare.
XFX AMD Radeon RX 460 4GB Double Dissipation: Specs
- GPU AMD Radeon RX 460
- Compute Units: 14
- Stream Processors: 896
- Core Speed: 1220MHz (Boost Mode)
- Memory Speed 7GHz
- Memory bus width: 128-bit
- Memory type and capacity GDDR5 4GB
- Maximum digital resolution 4096x2160
- PCIe 3.0
- CrossFire Ready: Yes
- DirectX 12 Support: Yes
- HDR Ready: Yes
- Power Consumption: <75W
- Minimum System Power Supply: 400W
- Recommended System Power Supply: 450W
- Power Connector: 1x 6-pin
- Ports: 1x DVI-D, 1x HDMI 2.0b, 1x DisplayPort 1.4
- Card width: 2 slots Dimensions: 121mm x 238mm
- Accessories: Installation guide, 4-pin to 6-pin power cable, warranty card
- Software: Installation DVD
- Warranty: 3 years