First released back in 2017, the AMD Radeon RX 580 graphics card is now over 5 years old. Yet despite its age, the venerable RX 580 still offers compelling performance and value for budget-minded gamers today in 2023.
In this detailed guide, we‘ll be exploring the top 10 reasons why the RX 580 remains a smart purchase for smooth 1080p gaming and even capable 1440p gaming with some settings adjustment. From its proven frame rates to abundant used market supply, the RX 580 packs performance that belies its low cost.
The RX 580 delivers stunning 1080p gaming performance in modern titles, nearly matching more expensive last-gen options like the GTX 1060. With further tweaks, enjoyable 1440p gameplay is also attainable in many titles. Extremely affordable new and used pricing combined with high reliability and efficiency make the RX 580 a budget champion.
Let‘s dive into the details on why this 5+ year old GPU still deserves a place in gamers‘ rigs even in 2023!
1. Still Offers Great 1080p Gaming Performance
Thanks to its Polaris architecture and 8GB VRAM, the RX 580 continues delivering smooth frame rates in today‘s games at 1920 x 1080 resolution. It maintains high settings in most titles without compromises.
Here‘s a look at average and 1% low fps performance in a selection of popular games at 1080p:
|Game||Avg FPS||1% Low FPS|
These benchmarks demonstrate enjoyable 60+ fps gameplay is certainly achievable in new releases using the RX 580 at 1080p. For highly competitive shooters like Valorant, frame rates well over 100fps are possible, ensuring fluid gameplay.
While demanding titles may require slightly reduced textures or shadows, the visual impact is minor compared to the big fps boost. Modding and BIOS flashing guides can also push the RX 580‘s performance beyond stock levels to achieve even faster 1080p gameplay.
Overall the RX 580 still delivers smooth high or ultra settings gameplay at 1080p in today‘s latest games, cementing its status as a very capable 1080p GPU even after over 5 years on the market.
2. Capable 1440p Gaming in Many Titles
The RX 580 can also provide enjoyable 1440p gaming experiences in a wide variety of titles. While visual quality settings need to be turned down slightly from max, frame rates between 45-60fps are achievable in many games at 2560 x 1440 resolution on the RX 580:
|Game||Avg FPS 1440p|
|Forza Horizon 5||52 FPS (High Settings)|
|Doom Eternal||61 FPS (High Settings)|
|Control||48 FPS (Medium Settings)|
Competitive online games like CS:GO, DOTA 2, and Rainbow Six Siege all comfortably exceed 60fps on the RX 580 at 1440p, especially if some post processing effects are disabled.
Comparing the RX 580 directly to the similarly priced GTX 1060 6GB reveals how both deliver playable 1440p experiences despite their age:
|Game||RX 580 FPS (Settings)||GTX 1060 FPS (Settings)|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider||55 fps (Medium)||53 fps (Medium)|
|Hitman 2||61 fps (High)||57 fps (High)|
With optimized graphics settings tailored to each game, the RX 580 manages to provide smooth 1440p gameplay, demonstrating it still has legs for higher resolution gaming. Features like Radeon Image Sharpening can also help enhance perceived image quality at lower resolutions when needed.
3. Great Budget Price Point
Priced at around $140-180 for new models, the RX 580 offers tremendous value compared to other entry-level GPUs that cost more but perform worse, like the RX 6500 XT:
|RX 580 8GB||April 2017||$140-$180||100%|
|RX 6500 XT 4GB*||January 2022||$180-$220||75% of RX 580|
*Benchmarks via Tom‘s Hardware
As the table shows, the 5+ year old RX 580 is both faster and cheaper than the brand new RX 6500 XT. Used RX 580s can be found for under $100 routinely on eBay, providing even better value.
Gamers looking for the most performance per dollar are hard pressed to find a better option than a used RX 580, which remains over 25% faster in 1080p gaming than the RX 6500 XT.
4. Excellent DX12 and Vulkan Support
The RX 580 fully supports modern DirectX 12 and Vulkan graphics APIs, both low-level frameworks that can provide performance benefits in games utilizing them.
Thanks to core features like asynchronous compute, the RX 580 sees nice fps uplifts in DX12/Vulkan titles compared to older GCN GPUs:
- Strange Brigade: 69 fps (Vulkan) vs 57 fps (DX11)
- Resident Evil 2 Remake: 87 fps (DX12) vs 78 fps (DX11)
- Battlefield V: 92 fps (DX12) vs 81 fps (DX11)
Recent improvements like variable rate shading and mesh shaders are also available on the RX 580 through driver updates, helping further optimize performance in supporting games.
AMD‘s continued driver support ensures the RX 580 can leverage the latest rendering advancements in game engines. This better positions it against competing older GPUs lacking DX12/Vulkan compatibility and optimizations.
5. Quiet and Cool Thanks to Mature 14nm Process
The RX 580 utilizes an extremely refined 14nm FinFET manufacturing process that has reached maturity after years of production. This results in cooler and quieter operation compared to AMD‘s early 14nm GPUs.
Reviews show the RX 580 topping out around 70°C under full gaming loads. Fan speeds barely exceed 40% of max RPMs even at those temperatures.
Compared to the notoriously hot RX 480 which saw 83°C temps and loud fans speeds, the RX 580 runs 13°C cooler and significantly quieter thanks to manufacturing improvements. This gives it a huge advantage in small form factor builds where heat dissipation is critical.
With aftermarket cards utilizing large heatsinks like the Sapphire Pulse model, the RX 580 can game comfortably under 60°C with fans almost inaudible under 40% speed. Overall the highly mature 14nm process contributes greatly to the RX 580‘s cool and quiet operating profile.
6. Wide Driver Support and Game Optimization
AMD has maintained consistent driver support for the RX 500 series for over 5 years now. Along with continued optimizations and new features, they‘ve also specifically enhanced performance in older games that were profiled on the RX 580 architecture.
For example, 2017 titles like Prey and Dawn of War 3 have seen performance boosts over 10% in recent drivers compared to their launches thanks to mature software optimization by AMD.
AMD has committed to supporting the RX 500 series with quarterly driver updates going forward. So the RX 580 will continue seeing new optimizations and functionality improvements as part of AMD‘s ongoing driver rollout strategy. This wide software support provides great peace of mind for those wanting to run both older and newer games smoothly on the RX 580.
7. Readily Available Used Supply
As one of AMD‘s most popular GPUs of the past decade, there is ample supply of used RX 580 cards available. They are easily found on eBay with daily listings numbering in the hundreds.
Based on completed listing analysis, recent used RX 580 8GB prices average around $85-100 depending on model and condition. These are full featured cards and not stripped down mining variants.
Buying used provides big savings over new models. But those savings do require carefully inspecting the GPU‘s condition and testing performance once installed.
Used buyers should check for obvious damage, compare benchmarks to expected scores, and stress test the card thoroughly to catch any artifacts or issues from heavy use like mining. But with some diligence, used RX 580s offer virtually new performance for under $100.
8. Proven Reliability and Durability
After over 5 years of use across tens of millions of gamers and miners, the RX 580 has demonstrated exceptional reliability and durability.
Sapphire reports return rates consistently under 0.5% for RX 580 cards, even on units with years of use already, indicative of very high reliability. And enthusiast testing has shown most RX 580s easily surviving over 2 years of continual cryptocurrency mining with undervolting applied.
Reviews praise the quality of RX 580 models across brands like Sapphire, ASUS, and MSI. Cards utilize premium components including new heat spreader designs that reduce hot spots and improve cooling compared to the RX 400 series.
AMD also optimized the RX 580‘s power delivery and load balancing compared to early Polaris GPUs. These improvements translate to real-world reliability, making the RX 580 a graphics card built to last years even under demanding use cases.
9. Low Power Consumption
The RX 580 is remarkably power efficient compared to modern high-end graphics cards, with an average board power of just 185 watts.
That‘s over 100W less than a GPU like the RTX 3060 Ti which draws upwards of 300W. Lower wattage cards like the GTX 1650 are still beaten in gaming performance by the RX 580 despite drawing 20W+ less power.
With an 8-pin connector capable of delivering 150W on its own, most RX 580 models run fine even on lower wattage 400-500W power supplies.
The RX 580‘s frugal power appetite makes it a great choice for system builders working with restrictive OEM power supplies. Gamers can enjoy cool, efficient RX 580 performance without the high energy costs associated with modern 250W+ GPUs during today‘s energy crunch.
10. Unlocks Well for Extra Performance
While the RX 580 already provides great 1080p performance at stock settings, enthusiasts can push it further through overclocking and BIOS flashing.
Many RX 580 cards share identical hardware to the RX 480, allowing the RX 580 BIOS to be cross-flashed onto the RX 480 for an immediate 5-10% performance bump from the increased power limits and clock speeds.
With sufficient cooling, RX 580s can often hit over 1550MHz core clocks with BIOS tweaks and voltage adjustments. Memory overclocking to 9Gbps is also common for additional bandwidth. These modifications can push the RX 580‘s performance to rival much more expensive RX 590 GPUs while spending minimal upgrade costs.
So if you want to extract every last drop of speed from the RX 580, there‘s definitely headroom beyond stock specs accessible to PC enthusiasts.
To summarize, the AMD Radeon RX 580 continues to prove itself as a very capable 1080p gaming GPU option even in 2023 thanks to its strong frame rates, abundant used supply, and exceptional efficiency and reliability.
If you‘re a gamer focused on smooth 60fps+ performance in 1080p on a strict budget, the RX 580 remains hard to beat. With further settings optimizations, enjoyable 1440p gameplay is also within reach in many titles.
Of course, compromises versus newer GPUs exist – the RX 580 won‘t deliver high frame rates in 4K or enable every graphical bell and whistle in the newest games. But for shoppers wanting the most bang for buck from a GPU around $100, the RX 580 still represents an outstanding value over 6 years since its launch. Paired with a decent quad core CPU, it can readily power through today‘s games without breaking the bank.
So don‘t overlook this solid older GPU just because of its age – the RX 580 has stood the test of time and remains a cost-effective choice for high fidelity 1080p gaming here in 2023.