Packaging & Accessories: 7 out 10
MSI has been creating well-crafted shipping containers for many generations now and the Radeon RX 6600 XT is no exception. It is attention getting, but not garish. The outside is filled with good assortment of details and infographics. The internal defense offers excellent protection, and while the accessories are sparse… they get the job done without needless adding to the already overly inflated asking price of the entire RX 6600 XT market.
Functionality & Aesthetics: 17 out of 20
From an aesthetics standpoint MSI knocked it right out of the park. Easily ten out of ten for its MSRP class. The functionality is also pretty good as the combination of oversized heatsinks with two beefy 95mm fans keeps both noise and temperatures firmly in check. The only problem is the fascia does make the card longer than it should be and that room should have been populated with more fin array goodness. The monitor header selection is bog standard… and the increased dimensions make it more difficult to fit into smaller cases. So much so it makes some GeForce RTX 3060 Ti cards look waifish in their dimensions. So still well beyond average, but plenty of room for improvement.
Build Quality & Warranty: 15 out of 20
While we would have liked less ‘overhang’ (which needlessly extends the length of this card), the MSI Radeon RX 6600 XT Gaming X it is built to a very high, very good standard. So while not perfect, it is pretty decent from this point of view. The same can be said of the warranty which is pretty much bog standard 3-year warranty. That is to say, very decent but still plenty of room for improvement.
Performance: 10 out of 30
To be clear, the performance this card offers does not resemble a potato… it just looks like one when compared against similarly priced cards. Seriously. It’s not that bad. It just that badly priced… and does not have the horsepower to compete in its higher price class. Honestly, if the RX 6600 XT’s were priced like what GeForce RTX 3060’s were on launch day (i.e. low 3bill range) we would have a lot less issues with the performance this card has to offer. We would probably even be lauding its ability to outcompete 3060s while nearly being able to compete against 3060Ti cards. Sadly, AMD dictated a price gouging MSRP on their (vaporware) AMD branded version and demanded their board partners follow suit with laughably high pricing. Thus, the low score we are forced to give it.
Value: 2 out of 20
The only reason we are not awarding the MSI Radeon RX 6600 XT Gaming X a negative value score is because it is not MSI’s fault for its pricing. It is AMDs. MSI put a veritable ton of effort into their creation, and it shows. So while it, just like all Radeon RX 6600 XT cards, are so overly inflated in their asking price it is shameful… at least with the MSI Radeon RX 6600 XT Gaming X you get a pretty card that is extremely well behaved. One that also offers about as good performance as one can expect from the Navi 23 XT core. That is what turns a negative 20 into a positive 2.
Final Score: 51%
The MSI Radeon RX 6600 XT Gaming X is easily one of the most frustrating pieces of hardware we have reviewed in long time. The aesthetics are darn near perfect for most people. Its custom cooling solution with dual fan configuration all but ensures the card will be at or near ambient noise levels. That selfsame custom cooling solution also makes sure this card never runs hot. Yes, on the surface it is darn near perfection. Sadly, at the end of the day a GPU must be able to push pixels fast enough to justify its asking price. That is not a battle any NAVI 23 XT equipped card can win. Bluntly stated, AMD has dictated prices that are insanely overpriced. This has murdered what could have been a bunch of great cards like the MSI Radeon RX 6600 XT Gaming X. Put another way beauty may only be skin deep, but ugly goes to the bone… and the NAVI 23 XT core is one ugly core at its existing price point.