If you've been waiting to get your hands on a new AMD Radeon 6800 XT then you may be in luck. Gigabyte's gaming division Aorus live-streamed a launch event to YouTube and Facebook on December 14 to announce the latest AIB (add-in-box, or custom) Radeon RX 6800 series cards.
Versions of both the 6800 and 6800 XT were unveiled for the Aorus Master and Gaming OC lines, but if you were hoping for some low-cost gaming from this announcement then you're set up to be disappointed. To try and coax cash from your pocket, Gigabyte did a performance comparison against the last generation of RX 5700 XT cards, with new graphically demanding games such as Watch Dogs: Legion and Assasins Creed: Valhalla.
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Big power, big pricetag
First up, we have the RX 6800 Aorus Master version coming in at $719 (around £540, AU$1,000), which makes it the cheapest of the lineup. Note that this isn't the XT version of the Radeon card, and the price is still a good bit over the reference card MSRP of $579 (around £599, AU$820).
The next upcoming GPU (graphics processing unit) announced is the Gigabyte Gaming OC 6800 XT at $849 (around £635, AU$1,130), also sporting a hefty price increase with a 31% markup from the founder's edition card. Gigabyte has also included their 'screen cooling' tech in this card, promising a cooler and quieter gaming experience.
Finally, we have the premium option for the Aorus Radeon RX 6800 XT Master Type C. This GPU comes with all the bells and whistles, with an LCD monitor where you can display custom graphics or information (even your favorite gifs), and a USB-C output option. This will cost you $899 (around £670, AU$1,200) over the $649 (around £649, AU$960) MSRP of the reference AMD card, a 38.5% increase.
The cards have launched on the Gigabyte website, however we cannot locate any stock for them at this time.
Whilst the prices aren't in the region of those being seen for custom GeForce GTX 3090 cards, it still stings to see the premium being charged for these non-reference GPUs. It's standard for custom GPU manufacturers to increase the price of reference graphics cards, but that doesn't make the pill any easier to swallow when the AMD cards were marketed as 'affordable'.
With the high demand for next-gen hardware for both console and PC gaming, it's also likely we will see more of these high prices going forward. We'll keep our fingers crossed that the stock shortages are resolved soon.
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