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Drivers & Software

Adept I

Why I will never buy an AMD card again

I don't want this to be a rant post, but I feel I really need to write this down and try to summarize all the issues I have faced so far with my AMD card and let other people know about them. It is not meant to be an angry discussion, but an informative post that everyone should look at before buying another card, because some of these are not documented anywhere else.

General issues with AMD drivers:

  • Bad OpenGL performance: as everyone knows OpenGL implementation on Windows just sucks. It's miles behind the Linux one, and this is particularly bad for emulator fanatics who wants to play old console games.
  • Driver settings not affecting games: so AMD gave you a really cool redesign of the driver's GUI with Adrenaline, but forgot to update how the driver interacts with games. Yes, all the driver settings (Antialiasing, Anisotropic filtering, VSync, etc.) only affect DirectX 9 games. These are USELESS for nowadays standards.

Issues I had with my AMD graphics card (which is an RX 480 8GB):

  • Bad Vulkan performance: I don't know if I am the only one, but could not find anyone else noticing this problem. What happens is that on Vulkan games the GPU is used only at 70-80% max, depending on the game. This is confirmed if you check the dissipated power (around 10W less in my case) or even the card temperature. This is incredibly frustrating because limits my framerate just below 60 (around 50 or so) and I have to make big compromises in terms of graphics quality in order to play the game at a reasonable framerate.
  • "Fake" GPU usage: I extensively use the sleep mode on my PC. Sometimes, it happens that when I wake it up from sleep mode and play a game, the game runs with half the frame rate. GPU usage, however, remains the same. I have to restart the driver (using the utilities that come with CRU) or restart the computer entirely to fix it.
  • Wattman: I modified my BIOS to use a more aggressive fan curve, but no matter what, AMD Wattman prevails and sets its own fan curve. I spent countless hours digging into the registry trying to disable it. Fortunately MSI Afterburner never gives up on me.

Issues I had with specific games:

  • Anisotropic filtering in Death Stranding: in this game anisotropic filtering implementation is very weak and many users suggest to force it through the driver settings. Guess what? AMD driver settings do not work on this game, because of course is not a DirectX 9 game!


Bonus issues: these are just unrelated issues that however should be stated once

  • Ryzen CPU not idling: I got a 2600X. It works really well, never had a problem so far except this little thing that's really annoying: it does not idle. The core frequency always stays at around 4GHz. I come from an i5 2500K which automatically downclocked to 1.6GHz on idle. I had to write a script that runs on background to change the Windows power plan to "Power Saver" in order to keep it at 2.2GHz while I'm not using the PC.
5 Replies

RE:  so AMD gave you a really cool redesign of the driver's GUI with Adrenaline

It is Adrenalin.
No it is not a "cool redesign" of the Drivers GUI. 
It is an ergonomic mess.
The GUI layout and design is inconsistent, takes up far too much screen space.
Any GUI that needs a scrollbar to let the user see all the options at 1080p let alone 4K is doing something wrong. 
Button locations move from one tab to the next. 
Recent media and Performance Report clutters game profiles.
No previous -> Next buttons to navigate the hellish menus.
The Performance Monitor on the Home page and Performance Report reports total nonsense and I cannot turn it off.
There is STILL no user controlled Performance Monitor like in the older Adrenalin 2020 19.12.1 GUI/UI. 
They dropped FRTC because the Drivers Team could not be bothered to add an additional slider Global FRTC slider to the GUI/UI, AMD tried to argue you didn't need FRTC and you could use Chill instead.
Global FRTC slider is back in Adrenalin 2020 20.3.1 
Was/is using a massive amount of CPU resources depending on the driver version. 
This is now supposed to be fixed. 
MultiGPU pairing options are gone, and "CrossFire" button option is pretty much broken. 
There is a built in Web Browser and who knows what data that is stealing there are NO privacy options and it uses Google search. 
There is no longer any way to report bugs to AMD on the WEB and the Bug Reporting Tool Trawls your PC for data and offers no opt out.

Adrenalin 2020 19.12.1 (old style) GUI/UI was and is much better. 
I used to be able to report BUGs to AMD using online WEB form. 
I am still using that GUI/UI with newer AMD Drivers on a number of my PCs. 

Normally there would have been a major update to Adrenalin 2021 at end of 2020. 
That is very late. 
Maybe it is because they are trying to fix the GUI/UI layout and built in web browser and bug reporting privacy options.
I hope so.

It will be interesting to see how "Professional Users" take to this Adrenalin interface for the latest Radeon Pro drivers. 

The "really cool redesign of the driver's GUI" is another reason NOT to buy an AMD card again. 

I completely agree with you. The older GUI was much more responsive, compact and I would say professional. When I wrote "cool" I just wanted to point out the fact that AMD prioritized the look over functionalities.

Journeyman III

Totally agree with you, I had so many problems with my AMD card.
From flashing my bios because the OC of the manufacturer made my GPU crash every sec to my drivers crashing every second without any help or support found online (still happening till this day).

Adept I

I am very very disappointed to buy an AMD gpu card. I feel very much regret of buying asus rog strix rx6900xt lc. I spent thousands of euros to buy this **bleep**in broken amd gpu. I am having problems since the day I built my new pc with rx6900xt. My previous rtx2080 was far better than this card. This card does not worth it and I am never gonna buy an amd gpu again. I have **bleep**in black screen issue and no one is doing a thing from amd. I tried every **bleep**in way to solve this **bleep**in issue but no way. every day black screen issue even 2-3 times an hour. It is frustrating. I want to say F. U. amd.

Adept II

Well said; I cannot believe what a mess AMD has turned their driver GUI into; I have stopped buying AMD GPUs primarily for this reason; I will pay more for an Nvidia GPU so that I have a holistically good user experience; from performance to driver interface execution.