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Sapphire NITRO+ AMD Radeon RX 470 8GB Review: Hashrate, Power Consumption and More

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product by:
Sapphire
Price:
$249.99

Reviewed by:
Rating:
5
On August 13, 2016
Last modified:December 27, 2016

Summary:

Sapphire Radeon Nitro+ rx 470 8GB GDDR5 dual HDMI / DVI-D / dual DP OC w/ backplate (UEFI) PCI-E graphics card

The Sapphire NITRO+ AMD Radeon RX 470 8GB is considered the best card of the new Radeon RX 470’s series. It features 8GB of inner memory that can be overclocked to up to 2100 MHz. That’s way faster than its 4GB non-nitro counterpart.

In fact, the mentioned difference between the 4GB and the 8GB versions often bring confusion to reviewers. Many talk about RX 470’s without specifying whether those are Sapphire or not, and that’s a big mistake.

Yeah, when mining GPU intensive coins such as SIA, the hashrate is not really affected by the memory capacity of the GPU, so in theory the 4GB and 8GB versions should perform the same. Nevertheless, there is a difference because as we’ve mentioned, besides having more capacity, the RX 470 8GB version is also faster than the 4GB one.

Sapphire NITRO+ AMD Radeon RX 470 8GB Review Hashrate, Power Consumption and More

In this article I’m going to review the Sapphire NITRO+ AMD Radeon RX 470 8GB. There is a split opinion about this card, since it does not perform equally in all the tests. I’ll try to detail that. Also, people often compare it to its oldest brother, the RX 480. I will use the RX 480 as reference as well, this way you might have a clearer picture about what to expect from the RX 470 8GB.

Gigahertz and Megahertz

Let’s review the frequency parameters first. The RX 470 8GB is a little bit slower than the RX 480, and it overclocking possibilities are less as well:

  • The RX 470 8GB comes with a stock frequency of 8 GHz (2000 MHz). It can be overclocked up to 8.2 GHz (2050 MHz) using WattMan. The other alternative, which became the most popular for the RX 470 is the ASUS GPU Tweak II tool, which allows you to reach the 8.4 GHz (2100 MHz) mark.
  • The RX 480 performs the best when working with 2200 – 2250 MHz. That difference is also reflected on the hashrate as well.

Nevertheless, it is possible that the full potential of the RX 470 8GB is not fully unlocked yet. Since the card is quite new, we still don’t have the proper drivers. Knowing AMD, we might expect some better drivers in the next 20 days or so. While some users speculate that the clock limit is caused by the quality of the memory chips, we cannot be sure about that until we will have the proper drivers in hand.

Another thing you might wan to know is that the RX 470 8GB works faster than the 4GB version, which can hit only the 7 GHz or 1750 MHz mark when overclocked.

  • Notes on tweaking mining rigs: Ideally, you’d like to tweak every card of the rig individually. Even if you’ve got a pack of six RX 470 cards, you’d like to use a “personal approach” to each of them. That’s a lot of work, I know, yet keep in mind that some cards might go to 2120 MHz, while others might not even hit 2080 MHz.

The idea here is to push each of the cards to their respective limits and find that sweet spot where each of them performs the best without crashing or throttling. Therefore, what I’ve listed here are the averages and should be used only for informative purposes. It’s also important to adjust the voltage AND fan speed along with the frequency.

That’s quite a disclaimer, I know, but many people fall into the trap of using the same frequency settings for the whole rig. As a result, they get worse rig performance than listed here.

Power Consumption

The RX 470 8GB operates with slightly higher voltages than the RX 480. That makes it quite more demanding when it comes to power consumption. On the other hand, the higher operating voltages might suggest that the card is designed to be heavily overclocked. That’s another reason why I believe that the actual card clock limit is caused by drivers, rather than by the card hardware.

Back to power consumption, the 470 8GB pulls about 160 W from the wall, when working with a hashrate of 25,6 Mh/s and 1539 Mh Sia, in a rig of six cards.

Having the same rig size filled with RV 480’s, some users report a power consumption of 800 W (133 W per GPU), running on Windows 10 and using Wattman to achieve a 27 Mh/s hashrate. Notice that the RX 480 can achieve a hashrate of 28 Mh/s when overclocked to 9 GHz. In that case, obviously, the power consumption rises as well.

Now, according to some credible sources, the RX 470 8GB can be underclocked without notable performance losses. That might be useful for memory-dependant algorithms, such as Ethereum mining. Underclocking allows you to drop power consumption down to 130 W and decrease fan rotation speed (which means less fan noise and wear).

Performance and Hashrate

As for now, looks like Claymore is giving the most accurate Hashrate metrics. It is also the most used testing technique as well. Therefore, the numbers you’ll find on the internet are more likely been made using Claymore.

Also, please keep in mind that every pool is different. For instance, ethermine.org proved to give an average of 11% higher hashrate than Claymore. Let’s review the results, made with Claymore’s Dual Miner ETH:

  • The RX 470 8GB has a 24.5 Mh/s average with factory memory clock (2000 MHz). It can be overclocked up to 8100 MHz when using the Asus Tweak II tool. In that case, the card achieves a hashrate of 25.5 Mh/s. As for now, that’s the most you can get from it.
  • The RX 480 has the same 24.5 Mh/s average when used with the factory clock. Now, the card really excels when overclocked, achieving a hashrate of 27.9 Mh/s.

Driver Compatibility and Known Issues

Same as the RX 480, the RX 470 8GB does not work with all of the modern mining algorithms. Looks like that’s a common issue all new Radeon cards share, so don’t expect the RX 470 to be an exception. The three most popular algorithms that show zero hashrate are Neoscrypt, Blake256r14 and WhirlpoolX.

In addition, it has been reported that:

  • The video driver crashes with the LBRY sgminer, and no one found a way to overcome that issue yet;
  • The card can mine SiaCoin via the sgminer. In the tests, Stratum was used on the Siamining pool, and the average hashrate was 906 Mh/s.

In Conclusion

As for now, the RX 470 8GB is mostly used to mine Ethereum (ETH). It might be slower than the RX 480 and require slightly more power, but there’s hope yet. Having in mind the higher GPU voltage, we can speculate that the future hotfixes and driver updates might allow us to overclock it way more than we can now.

There are few other facts worth mentioning about the RX 470 8GB:

  • It comes with an 8-pin PCI-E power connector. It has two additional ground pins, compared to the 6-pin connector. This might have a positive impact on the card performance.
  • It features improved cooling. The RX 480 needs an 80% fan speed or more in order to mine properly, while the RX 470 8GB is often useable when having the fan at only 30%-40%.
  • The 470 8GB also features a 1260 MHz boost clock of the GPU. That’s quite low, compared to the 1340 MHz boost you can get on the RX 480. However, the difference isn’t so bad, considering that the RX 480 has temperature issues when its GPU hits the maximum frequency mark.

It’s up to you to choose the winner.

The prices are quite the same, at least for now. The RX 480 is older and thus better known that the RX 470. Now, you might opt for the RX 470 8GB if you want less cooling issues. Also, due to its newness, it’s still unclear how good it might become once AMD releases some good drivers for it. It might become as fast as the RX 480, or it might not.

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Thank you for reading. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are welcome.

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  • Agustin Alvarez

    Great post!
    I’m in the dilemma of buying a RX 470 or a 480 rx … It’s for a single GPU Rig and I hope to generate mid-term gains to buy another Rig multi gpu. What do you advise me? I need to generate the biggest possible profits so I can buy my next rig in less time. I have advanced skills about computing so if you advise me a rx 470 could overclock if you can help me with the instructions or some software and the parameters to configure! : D The idea is to use it to mine MONERO, ZCASH and ETH. Greetings and I await your response and advice! : D

    • Hey Augustin… I will recommend sapphire nitro+ rx 470 4gb, hynix mem or at leas elpida.. samsung is the slowest..with a modified bios you can reach up to 28-29 Mh/s. I will write this days a tutorial on how to do it properly.

      • Agustin Alvarez

        If I perform such a high overclock would not be putting at risk the useful life of the gpu? I have the possibility to acquire any of the three gpu mentioned! RX 470 4 and 8GB and I can also buy the RX 8GB … In general terms thinking about a future AMD update to the drivers, you still recommend the 470? Reading in forums, the most recommended is the 470 8gb, still I still prefer to go on the 480 thinking that AMD update the drivers to improve their performance … What do you think about it? My decision is between 470 8gb and 480 8gb. Money is no problem in this decision but I do not want to make an unnecessary purchase either. Remember that it is a RIG with a single GPU and I need to buy the one that generates more profits of these gpu.

        • The card will not be in any risk since the bios is well modified and the power consumption is 70-80w, less energy=more profits! So basically one RX470 4GB,modded bios will hash 28+Mh/s and an RX480 8GB,modded bios, can hash 29+Mh/s consuming 90w+.

          • Agustin Alvarez

            And how is the performance of the rx470 8gb vs. the rx 470 4gb?

          • As o know isn’t he same hashing speed.. maybe the 8gb will consume more power but not really sure.

          • Agustin Alvarez

            I decide on the 470 8gb then, thank you! I hope the tutorials to be able to perform a correct overclock without putting the gpu at risk: D Do you have Facebook? Or some place to talk more comfortable?

          • you can message me on facebook here: https://www.facebook.com/1stminingrig/ or on twitter https://twitter.com/1stMiningRig

          • Agustin Alvarez

            Thanks! 😀

          • Dennis

            Hi Agustin,

            How is the RX470 8GB working? With what OS, mining tool and mining pool are you operating right now? And what settings do you prefer?

            Have you bought the Sapphire RX470 8GB Nitro+ OC?

          • Hey Dennis, ill recommend Sapphire Nitro+ OC RX 470 4GB!

          • Dennis

            Hi Ciprian,

            Why do you recommend the 4GB over the 8GB version? In multiple test i see that the 8GB version got higher scores and the price difference is €15,-.

          • Same hashing speed,modded bios, undervolted, less power usage. In my country there is a difference of €50. And if you have the luck to get with Hynix/Elpida memory then you will have 31Mh/s on ethereum at 70w per card. I have Samsung memory, the max i can get is 29. xxx Mh/s with 75w, still a good number.

            Many miners tested all RX versions and this model had the best results in hashing speed/power usage/

          • Dennis

            Hi Ciprian,

            Also at mining ZEC (Zcash)? Can you also tell me what coin i can mine at best?

            Thanks!

          • yes, you can mine ZCash, also Monero, Pascal.. etc.. 🙂 currently I guess Monero is the most profitable but if you have a 6x gpu rig you can stay with eth till pos.

          • Agustin Alvarez

            Sorry for the delay! I see Ciprian already help you with doubts! regards ;D

          • Agustin Alvarez

            Okay! I hope the tutorial to perform overclok!

    • Forgot to mention about the low energy.. like 70+w per card.

  • Syam Sundar

    does hash rate depend upon internet or hardware ,i have I5 and Nvidea my hash of dash coin is 75 H/s ..i used internet 4mbps only …can anyone tell me

  • Zulfiqur Rahman

    I am using Sapphir RX470 and RX480 cards all are 8GB. The performance looks not so big as price diff so big! So I next cards I will add RX470 8GB.

  • Benjamin Houde

    Why do you state that 1 Ghz = 250 Mhz?

  • Akuma

    I wanna start to create my first mining small ring for Ethereum. After reading a lot of forums included this great review I think I’m going to buy the RX 470 8Gb due to lower price in my country. In the beginning I would like to start with 1 card, and then see how it works. What motherboard and process should I choose to get the best possible performances???
    Thanks a lot!!!

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