GPU Performance

The heart of any gaming laptop is the GPU, and with the AMD Radeon RX 6800M, the ASUS Strix G513QY offers one of the fastest GPUs in a notebook computer. AMD’s latest RDNA2 graphics architecture is at the core of the platform, which also offers new synergies when paired with the AMD Ryzen 5000 processor.

The AMD Radeon RX 6800M sits at the top of their product stack, and AMD feels it can go toe to toe with NVIDIA’s RTX 3080L. Designed for systems with 145-Watt TDPs and above, the 6800M can push a laptop to its limits. Thanks to AMD SmartShift, which leverages machine learning algorithms to match the workload with the power requirements, the 6800M can be boosted up to 15% by shifting some of the processor power budget over to the GPU.

Thanks to the RDNA2 architecture, the Radeon RX 6800M also gets new features such as hardware ray acceleration, and variable rate shading. The former will improve visuals on games that support it, while the latter will improve performance by reducing the shading effort on portions of the image where it is not important, while keeping the full visual fidelity where the player will notice it. As both features require developer support, this won’t impact all games, but partially thanks to AMD’s win in the console space, features like variable rate shading already are available in some titles.

The Radeon RX 6800M features 40 compute units, with a 2300 MHz frequency. It also is able to be switched off when not in use, which is very important for a notebook, and AMD claims a near 0-Watt power level when in the disabled state. There is also 96 MB of Infinity Cache, which is a global cache for fast data access at lower power levels. In addition, AMD offers Smart Access Memory, which requires a Ryzen 3000 or Ryzen 5000 processor, and allows the CPU to bypass the typical 256 MB limit per transaction.

Although similarly named to the desktop counterpart, the Radeon RX 6800, AMD, like NVIDIA, has to deal with far more constrained thermals in the notebook form factor, which limits TDP much more than the desktop cards, which can draw 300+ Watts on their own. AMD focuses the 6800M on the 145-Watt and over range, and targets the GPU at 2560x1440 resolution panels. The review unit AMD sent is just a 1920x1080 panel though, albeit a 300 Hz refresh rate FreeSync IPS LCD. A device such as this would target the lowest latency for e-sports and the like, since the Radeon RX 6800M is really too much GPU for this resolution as we will see shortly.

As usual, we’ll kick off with some synthetics, then move on to some gaming tests.

3DMark

Futuremark 3DMark Fire Strike

Futuremark 3DMark Sky Diver

UL’s 3DMark offers several workloads with varying levels of complexity. Generally, as the workload gets less complex, it becomes more CPU bound. The ASUS Strix G513QY demolishes the competition in the most complex test of this suite, Fire Strike, but then falls back as the workloads get lighter and the CPU comes more into play.

GFXBench

GFXBench 5.0 Aztec Ruins Normal 1080p Offscreen

GFXBench 5.0 Aztec Ruins High 1440p Offscreen

With version 5.0 of GFXBench, Kishonti added DirectX 12 workloads to their suite, which are the two we run. GFXBench is geared towards lower-powered devices, including tablets, so running them on a GPU such as this is more academic than useful, but as it is part of our normal suite, it was run here as well, and unsurprisingly the Radeon RX 6800M had no issues with such a small amount of work.

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider - Enthusiast

Although an older game, we keep Tomb Raider around mostly for the integrated graphics solutions, so it should be no surprise that the ASUS G513QY crushes this benchmark. Enjoy the 300 Hz display, because it will get a workout here.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

Rise of the Tomb Raider - Enthusiast

The second installment in the Tomb Raider franchise increased the visuals significantly, which results in a much more stressful test, but here the Radeon RX 6800M does not really do overly great in the DirectX 12 mode. Likely at this resolution, the benchmark is 100% CPU bound.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Shadow of the Tomb Raider - Enthusiast

One of the best aspects of the Shadow of the Tomb Raider benchmark is that it outputs the percentage of how often the framerate was GPU bound. It very much confirmed the previous data points here, since at the 1920x1080 resolution with everything set to its highest level in terms of fidelity, the benchmark was GPU bound 0% of the time. Translating that, it means that in fact, the 6800M is 100% CPU bound on these tests.

Strange Brigade

Strange Brigade - Enthusiast

One of the newer titles to our suite is Strange Brigade, and the DirectX 12 title offers a wide range of performance levels, allowing it to be played on anything from integrated graphics, all the way up to top-tier GPUs. Although likely CPU bound again, the 6800M is still very fast.

Shadow of War

Shadow of War - Enthusiast

In a theme that seems to keep repeating itself, the ASUS Strix G513QY continues to not really set itself apart from the competition at this resolution. It still does well but is clearly being held back.

Far Cry 5

Far Cry 5 - Enthusiast

In what may be the most CPU-bound game in the suite, it is probably no surprise to see the ASUS where it is.

UHD Benchmarks

Although the ASUS G513QY is offered with a 2560x1440 panel, and almost certainly that would be the correct one to go with for this system, AMD sent us the 1920x1080 panel for the review, and that is a shame. There is a lot of performance left on the table. To see just how capable the GPU is, it was plugged into an external UHD monitor and some of the workloads were re-run.

ASUS G513QY UHD Resolution Benchmarks

Remember Shadow of the Tomb Raider saying it was GPU bound 0% of the time at 1920x1080? At UHD it was 77% of the time GPU bound. That is more like it. At the highest settings, most of these games can hit 60 FPS average even at 3840x2160, and a game like Shadow of the Tomb Raider would just need some tweaks to the settings to achieve that as well. The Radeon RX 6800M is really one of the first laptop GPUs that could power a UHD panel, and yet the unit it ships in is a 1920x1080 resolution, offering just one quarter of the pixels.

GPU Conclusion

AMD targets the Radeon RX 6800M at 2560x1440, and for good reason. As we have seen, in pretty much every title, it is completely CPU bound at 1920x1080, even with the newest Ryzen 9 5900HX as the processor. The synthetic tests, as well as the UHD resolution results, really prove this point.

Although there is certainly a market where the 1920x1080 resolution is desired for the lowest latency, in this system, that panel is really too low of a resolution for such a powerful GPU, and it becomes wasted money spent.

System Performance Display Analysis
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  • Tams80 - Saturday, June 5, 2021 - link

    1. Laptops like these are not primarily work machines. People buy them to play games.
    2. External webcams almost always have compact mounting options built-in.
    3. Where are all these people going to to do their video calls that an external webcam would be a problem?
    Reply
  • pSupaNova - Sunday, June 6, 2021 - link

    I thought companies issue laptops are locked down and would not let you install games in the first place. And this heavy power hungry machine is not really a good fit for students. Webcam is definitely not needed on this. Don't even see a reason for trackpads. Reply
  • eastcoast_pete - Tuesday, June 1, 2021 - link

    I agree that a "shitty integrated webcam" doesn't have much appeal. However, I would like a decent webcam in my laptop. If you have to or want to host a video call or conference, doing so from your smartphone can suck quite badly; most platforms won't let you use a virtual background, or, even worse, what if you want to screen share? I know some people use an app to use their smartphone's cameras as their webcam. But, this is a "hard core" gaming laptop, so I might not be the customer they are thinking of. Well, some of us do things besides gaming on our machines. Reply
  • pSupaNova - Sunday, June 6, 2021 - link

    Do it on another machine or get a webcam this is optimised for gaming. Get over it Reply
  • vlad42 - Sunday, June 6, 2021 - link

    People don't like to waste their money buying separate machines for work and play. Get over it. Reply
  • Manch - Tuesday, June 1, 2021 - link

    I still prefer a dedicated webcam I can keep in my bag. Where I work, webcams and mics arent allowed except for in specific areas. We have to ensure theyre dosabled and put those thin strip lens covers on. If Im on the go, ie airport. Phone/zoom/earbuds. Reply
  • eastcoast_pete - Friday, June 4, 2021 - link

    I agree that, for integrated webcams, a slider or (better) an actual hardware disconnect, also for the microphones, would be preferable. Neither works without electric contacts. Reply
  • Tams80 - Saturday, June 5, 2021 - link

    And how many of those employees are moving their laptops around much?

    Very few, I'd imagine. So they could easily get by with a better quality external webcam.

    Not that many businesses are going to be buying laptops like this for their employees.
    Reply
  • wr3zzz - Tuesday, June 1, 2021 - link

    12GB of VRAM in a 1080P machine with 16GB of DRAM... Reply
  • WaltC - Friday, June 4, 2021 - link

    I'm almost positive I read the laptop offers an HDMI and DP (USB-C) output, for external monitors/TVs one would presume--too bad the reviewer here forgot to test a 1440P external monitor--which is likely considering the target market for this monitor. The reviewer kept talking about the absence of a web cam and a limit of 1080P (which doesn't exist) as if either was an insurmountable design flaw--oh, gee, I guess thinking just a little bit out of the box is difficult for people these days. He could have tested with an external monitor at > 1080P--and if he looked hard enough he might even have found one with a built-in web cam. Do tell. But that would have prevented the negative observations, I guess--so we can't have that, eh? BTW, 1080P is nice indeed when you are running on batteries--but I guess that was a bit too obvious to get his attention. Many, many people with laptops plug them into the wall at home and attach monitors/TVs/ whatever else they might want. No sense in writing a review which pretends otherwise. Reply

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