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rx 5700 xt low GPU usage

I just got my Graphics Card today (Gigabyte OC RX 5700 XT) and I noticed that it doesn't seem to ever be using a high amount of the Mhz at any time for more than a few seconds. I noticed this in Subnautica where I'm getting like 60 frames average at High Settings. When I look at my monitoring overlay, I see that my GPU is being used very little where my CPU is for some reason being used around the same or in some cases SLIGHTLY higher than my GPU. I know that this sounds like a bottlenecking issue, but a Ryzen 5 3600x shouldn't be doing this to my GPU. I also notice that in Dishonored 2 my Graphics card will be running at like 80-95% (Getting 100-125 FPS) for about 20 seconds and then it goes down to only about 40-55% and the FPS drops significantly (55-65 FPS). In a game like Rainbow Six Siege I think it is running good, I get what I see others getting in benchmarks so it's performing the same there. I really wanna troubleshoot this quickly, because I was looking forward to using this card and running games at high FPS to fully enjoy them. I have high hopes for this card still, assuming I can fix it somehow. I guess in order to make this into the correct "Question" Format, is there any good way I can fix this issue?

For a quick summary of the issues, my GPU is using only about half of what it should be using, and it never seems to run some games like it should.

Thanks for any help

  • Specs: Gigabyte OC RX 5700 XT
  • GPU: Gigabyte OC RX 5700 XT
  • CPU: Ryzen 5 3600x
  • RAM: 16gb DDR4 3200mhz Corsair Vengeance
  • PSU: Rosewill ARC 650W Bronze
  • MOBO: Gigabyte x570 Aorus Elite
13 Replies

I think the thing is with these cards, dynamic clock speeds/watts (clocks drop depending on graphics use/requirement per game). Not like older Gen. where older cards had a somewhat fixed core clock.

I bought the card for higher graphics quality, not higher fps on lower settings, obviously there are people who want 400+ fps in games with low graphics, but not me.

For me, games on high/ultra @1440p/120 capped are mostly working well.

I don't use any 3rd party/graphics/mobo oc/fan apps., or wattman (card runs off vbios only).

IMO wattman is really only for ref. design cards, once it's enabled, overrides/conflicts with AIB vbios (one example is losing zero fan on AIB cards.).

Drivers still need some work, one good for most games but next may break some.

Currently using 19.12.1.

I don't have Subnautica, so can't comment on that, but there are many games that have high cpu/ram use which may affect gpu use in some cases.

One major? thing I have done is change radeon settings to 'use app....' since swapping from R9 390 (& tweaking in game settings only), for me more stable (but I've always read (name of game) graphics performance tweak guides) to find what suit me).

Ryzen 5 5600x, B550 aorus pro ac, Hyper 212 black, 2 x 16gb F4-3600c16dgtzn kit, Aorus gen4 1tb, Nitro+RX6900XT, RM850, Win.10 Pro., LC27G55T..

When you say switch to "Use App" do you mean going into global settings in the AMD Setttings and setting everything to use app there?


Yes, Global (I don't use Profiles).


Ryzen 5 5600x, B550 aorus pro ac, Hyper 212 black, 2 x 16gb F4-3600c16dgtzn kit, Aorus gen4 1tb, Nitro+RX6900XT, RM850, Win.10 Pro., LC27G55T..
Adept II

Same here. Sniper Ghost Warrior in full hd - 40 fps and gpu usage 40%


What graphic settings are you using? There is a known issue with the RX5700 series running at 1080 low settings. It used to say 240hz but that is the settings they would use on 240hz monitors anyway so they probably realised it's a 1080p low setting issue. If your not using ultra try Ultra and see if that helps.

I had the same issue on my RX Vega 64 with BF5 the fix there is using pre-render frames option. I found my sweet spot was pre render 1 frame ahead using the console command. My GPU usage would drop severely and it would cause stutters at times. This wasn't a issue on previous battlefield titles, but for some reason my setup needs that option on to use the GPU at 100% and have smooth 1440p 144hz game play.

See if the games your playing lets you change the pre render frames option, otherwise it "might" be possible to do in Radeon Settings under the override settings in the games profile.

So I would try increasing the graphic setting and using pre-render frames.

Adept II

Of course max settings (ultra). I have full HD monitor and 5700 can't fully go. When i use VSR then i have 1440p and 100% GPU usage but lower than 60 fps. This is sick.


Which vers. of SGW, (I don't have Contracts), but all previous were buggy and needed some tweaking.

Ryzen 5 5600x, B550 aorus pro ac, Hyper 212 black, 2 x 16gb F4-3600c16dgtzn kit, Aorus gen4 1tb, Nitro+RX6900XT, RM850, Win.10 Pro., LC27G55T..


On nvidia it worked well, 99% gpu usage. on 5700 - 40-60%

Journeyman III

Has anyone figured this out yet? I've had my MSI 5700 XT Evoke for a couple of months now and this is driving me crazy. In most games, GPU utilization is erratic. In SGW Contracts, for example, I would get 30 FPS on some areas with GPU utilization of only 20%! I was previously using a Ryzen 1600 and upgraded to a 3600 because I thought the CPU was causing a bottleneck. But same result. I am now contemplating selling this card at a loss just to get rid of it. I have spent more time trying to fix this broken mess rather than enjoying gaming. I should have gone for the 2070. 

What PSU you have and 2 separete cables to the card? You reinstalled Windows?

Adept I

same issue here

Adept II

did you fix this?

same problem with a ref model... once this pandemic is over i'm going to the store to return it... ever since i've got this care all i've been doing is tweaking and tweaking and tweaking... nothing seems to work

Adept II

Has anyone had any luck fixing this? I have exactly the same issue with some games (brand new RX 5500 XT Pro) - particularly Far Cry 5 and Star Trek Online - unplayable no matter if I use ultra or low settings and even at the lowest resolutions, I get exactly the same frame rates, as low as 6fps and GPU usage spikes between 40% and 0% erratically all the time.

However Godfall runs perfectly at 1080p on ultra settings - 75fps with a steady 98% GPU usage. 

I started a thread here (I didn't see this one) if you want to see screenshots showing the massive difference in GPU usage