Having a great GPU is essential to any PC setup. But what does the GPU even do? The GPU is important because it is the main driver of the image creation speed that displays on the monitor. Meaning, a faster GPU would mean a faster frame rate. This is critical for gamers, working professionals, and hobbyists looking for a competitive edge.
The RTX 3050 and the RX 580 are two amazing entry-level GPUs that many new and experienced PC builders pick up when starting a new build. With both GPUs costing the least amount of all the other GPUs in their own respective series, it begs the question, which is the better one to buy?
Today, we’re going to break down the difference between the RTX 3050 and the RX 580. And by the end, you’ll be able to know which GPU is best for you. Let’s get into it!
RTX 3050 vs. RX 580: A Side-by-Side Comparison
|Boost Clock Speed
|Thermal Design Power
|Texture Fill Rate
|Memory Clock Speed
RTX 3050 vs. RX 580: What’s the Difference?
Nvidia released the RTX 3050 on January 22, 2022, at an MSRP of $249 USD. At the time of its release, the graphics card was so popular that the product quickly sold out. This combined with, at the time, the silicon shortage saw that it was immensely difficult to find the product in stock almost anywhere. Currently, you can purchase the RTX 3050 on amazon at $300 to $375 USD.
On the other hand, AMD Radeon released the RX 580 six years ago on April 17, 2017, at an MSRP of $200 USD. Because this line of graphics cards has been out for so long, there are a ton of new and used options for PC builders to take advantage of. Currently, you can buy an RX 580 new anywhere from $150 to $210 USD. This price makes it an amazing choice for first-time builders or experienced builders on a budget.
These two graphics cards are similar in price. But, what’s really the difference? Here we’ll discuss the biggest differences between these two graphics cards.
Although the difference in CUDA cores is not incredibly different, the extra cores allow for the RTX 3050 to complete tasks faster. This ability to process tasks quickly is one of the many reasons that contributed to the mass use of graphic cards for crypto mining.
More CUDA cores are also great news for those who are in occupations and hobbies that involve computing tasks quickly like programming, video games, data science, and more. These areas of study need their graphics cards to be able to render and generate their work rapidly.
Boost Clock Speed
Again, the RTX 3050 beats the RX 580 for the fastest boost clock speed. The boost clock speed can be often confused with overclocked speeds. This is not the case. Boost clock speed refers to the maximum speed possible by the graphics card before overclocking.
A high boost clock speed can be a great asset if you often find yourself in situations where having the fastest refresh rate can make the difference. It can literally be a game-changer. Because of the faster boost clock speed and more CUDA cores, the RTX 3050 has a definite advantage in being able to complete tasks.
Thermal Design Power
For thermal design power, the RX 580 has the RTX 3050 beat. But, this win comes at a cost. This cost comes in the form of heat. Because more power consumption means better performance, it can also mean higher temperatures and a greater demand on cooling systems.
When checking out new parts for a PC, always check to make sure that you would have adequate cooling to midgate against overheating, which can make the extra performance disappear. Also, make sure you also have an adequate battery supply to provide enough energy to power the GPU.
Texture Fill Rate
For texture fill rate, the RX 580 takes quite a generous lead with 193.0. For some, this is a crucial statistic when deciding which graphics card to buy. This is because, with a better texture fill rate, the graphics card is able to map elements to pixels more efficiently. In areas like 3D modeling and video game design, this fill rate can be crucial.
At first glance, you might be tempted to think that the GDDR6 is just a better version of GDDR5, and you wouldn’t be totally incorrect, but there are some factors that might affect your purchase.
The RTX 3050 has a GDDR6, the newer version of GDDR5. The GDDR6 is better at transferring data at a rate of 16GB per second than the GDDR5, which has a transfer rate of 8GB per second. But, this is not to say that the GDDR5 has no merit. The GDDR5 performs better with older technologies where stacked chips are not used. The reason is that the GDDR6 was designed for a new chip structure (stacked chips). This chip structure could be a deciding factor for prospective buyers who work with older technologies.
In fact, the extra money you would spend on upgrading to the GDDR6 sometimes wouldn’t even be noticeable unless you are specifically using technologies with stacked chipsets. Do some research on what memory types would best suit your needs for your build. If you find out that the GDDR6 wouldn’t be necessary for your use cases, then feel free to pocket that extra cash and get the previous structure. You can even spend the extra cash on some better peripherals like a mouse, headphones, and keyboard (these often get overlooked). Just keep in mind though that the GDDR5 runs hotter than the GDDR6. Make sure you would have a sufficient cooling system to keep the GDDR5 running optimally.
RTX 3050 vs. RX 580: 6 Must-Know Facts
- When buying a graphics card from AMD Radeon, check to make sure that your CPU would be compatible. There have been many instances where AMD Radeon graphics cards have compatibility problems with different types of CPU chips, which can make your whole experience frustrating.
- Nvidia is known for producing drivers that have proprietary software that makes it difficult for those who use a Linux operating system. AMD Radeon, however, is slightly better about this and works better for those downloading/running Linux operating systems.
- Make sure that you install drivers for your graphic cards so that they are able to be managed by you for how much overclocking you want to do. Because the RTX 3050 has a better boost clock than the RX 580 when overclocked the RTX 3050 can really put out.
- Both the RTX 3050 and the RX 580 were designed for PC builds focused on video games. If you are not using your graphics card for gaming, check to see what the system recommendations are for the applications and software that you are using to understand if buying one of these graphics cards is necessary.
- The AMD Radeon RX 580 consumes more power than the RTX 3050. You should check to see if you have the appropriate cooling and power system. This is done to keep the graphics card running at its peak optimal level.
Where to Buy
- 2X the FP32 throughput and improved power efficiency
- 2nd Generation RT Cores: 2X the throughput of 1st gen RT Cores
- A whole new level of ray-tracing performance
- Axial-tech fan design, 2-slot design for cooling efficiency
- PCIe 4.0, 8GB GDDR6 Memory
- HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4a, 2-Slot
- Based on the Polaris 20 graphics processor
- Supports DirectX 12
- Equipped with 2048SP and 8GB GDDR5 memory with a 1750 MHz (8 GB)
- 3 monitor support output included 2X DisplayPort 1.4a. +1X HDMI 2.0b
- Supports up to 8K display
- Semi-automatic intelligent fans system, which can automatically sense the GPU temperature.
- Draws power from 1x 8-pin power connector, with power draw rated at 185 W maximum
RTX 3050 vs. RX 580: Which One is Better for You?
Choosing between the RTX 3050 and the RX 580 is difficult as both demonstrate their ability to be useful to different types of professions and hobbies. Depending on what it is you do and your main focus, your choice can differ greatly.
That being said, our choice for which graphics card you should buy is the RX 580. Because the RX 580 is a great entry-level graphics card that you would most likely upgrade in the future. By buying the RX 580 you would be able to save some money, get a great graphics card, and be able to do most if not all of your activities. Plus, whenever you do decide to upgrade in the future, you know in which direction you would like your graphics card for better performance for you personally.
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