AMD RX 6700 XT leak suggests a GPU that could rival Nvidia’s RTX 3070

AMD Radeon RX 6700 XT
(Image credit: AMD)

AMD’s Radeon RX 6700 XT, the new GPU which goes on sale in a few days’ time on March 18, has been spotted in another leaked benchmark, with the 3DMark result of a third-party card (from Sapphire) hinting at a competent rival for Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 3070 – with caveats.

And we don’t just mean the normal caveats around any leak, which should always be regarded with a good deal of skepticism for obvious reasons. The 3DMark results highlighted by VideoCardz – purportedly of the Sapphire RX 6700 XT Nitro+ – come from China, or Bilibili to be precise, not always the most reliable source, so certainly bear that in mind.

Assuming this leak is genuine, the grabs provided (as VideoCardz notes, no pictures of the card are shared – or any specs of the Sapphire Nitro+) show a Time Spy Extreme score of 6,685, and Fire Strike Extreme and Ultra scores of 17,435 and 8,568 respectively. In Port Royal the 6700 XT racks up a tally of 5,891.

The leaker’s claim is that the RX 6700 XT does actually outdo the RTX 3070 very slightly – by around 5% – under 3DMark’s DX11 benchmark (Fire Strike), but struggles to match the 3070 in DX12 (Time Spy), and ray tracing (Port Royal) performance is heavily in favor of Nvidia.

As mentioned, we don’t know what speed the Sapphire RX 6700 XT Nitro+ is clocked at, or how much higher the card manufacturer might have pushed things compared to AMD’s reference design – which already runs with very fast clocks.

However, VideoCardz also made an interesting point in citing a comparison with the review of Sapphire’s 6800 XT Nitro+ from Wccftech, which paired that GPU with the same processor as the Bilibili leaker used in their benchmarking, namely the AMD Ryzen 9 5900X.

So, even if the rigs weren’t identical, they provide something of a similar reference point, using the same Nitro+ models from Sapphire. Comparing 3DMark scores across that old review and current leak, the 6800 XT proves to be just over 50% faster than the 6700 XT, though the former GPU has 80% more cores – showing just how ramped clock speeds are with the RX 6700 XT Nitro+.

It’s worth underlining that we should be careful about reading too much into all this, and into any single benchmark, and indeed bear in mind that we don’t know the state of the graphics driver used either (the full release version could provide an uplift for the 6700 XT, naturally).

Ashes spillage

Still, this isn’t the first spilled 6700 XT benchmarking we’ve seen of late. We can also consider the Ashes of the Singularity leak which just popped up, showing the incoming graphics card to be 32% quicker than its predecessor, AMD’s 5700 XT, a promising result. And certainly more positive than the previous Geekbench leak which painted a gloomier picture of 6700 XT performance (although that’s not a gaming benchmark, of course).

AMD is positioning the 6700 XT to take on the RTX 3070 (at 1440p) in the benchmark presentations it provided with the graphics card’s reveal, and the game leaks we’re seeing back this up to some extent – at least if you’re not considering ray tracing (or DLSS, another area in which AMD is trying to keep up with Nvidia). Notably, AMD’s official benchmarks didn’t include any ray tracing comparisons, as you may recall.

As ever, we’ll only really know the full story when we get to test the RX 6700 XT ourselves. Although the reality is no matter how the final verdict falls for comparisons between the 6700 XT and the RTX 3070 or Nvidia’s RTX 3060 models, AMD’s new GPU will fly off the shelves regardless. Because as we’ve seen at the moment, it’s not really a case of what graphics card should you buy, but rather, what graphics card can you buy – if you’re really lucky.

There’s no denying that any available 6700 XT stock will doubtless disappear in the blink of an eye anyway…

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).