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posted by martyb on Thursday November 14 2019, @11:47PM   Printer-friendly
from the smaller-faster-cheaper dept.

The AMD Ryzen 9 3950X Review: 16 Cores on 7nm with PCIe 4.0

Earlier this year AMD pushed again, this time putting 12 cores in the market for the same price as 8, or what had been the 4-core price point only three years prior. In three years we had triple the cores for the same price, and these cores also have more raw performance. The frequency wasn't as high as the competition, but this was offset by that raw clock-for-clock throughput and ultimately where the competition now offered eight cores, AMD offered 12 at a much lower power consumption to boot.

Today is round 2 part 2: taking that same 12-core processor, and adding four more cores (for a 50% increase in price), and not only going after the best consumer processor Intel has to offer, but even the best high-end desktop processor. This is AMD squeezing Intel's product portfolio like never before. What exactly is mainstream, anyway?

AMD's new Ryzen 9 3950X has a suggested retail price of $749. For that AMD is advertising sixteen of its latest Zen 2 cores built on TSMC's 7nm process, running at a 3.5 GHz base frequency and a 4.7 GHz single-core turbo frequency. The TDP of the chip is rated at 105 watts and it has 24 PCIe 4.0 lanes as well as dual memory channels that support up to 128 GB of DDR4-3200.

From the conclusion:

Because it is competing against Intel's high-end Skylake Refresh desktop platform (comparing equal core count, rather than price), it can't compete when AVX-512 is in play, or memory bandwidth is the limiting factor. At some level having this many cores requires extra memory bandwidth, and dual channel isn't going to cut it. This is one of the downsides of moving 'mainstream' up to a HEDT price point, even if it does come with more cores.

There are some other minor points to note – if we compare single threaded performance, despite AMD's Zen 2 having a general IPC advantage, the Core i9-9900KS is still running at 5.0 GHz for sustained single threaded work, which is still 7-15% higher than the Ryzen 3950X, and as a result it does pull out ahead in a number of ST tests as well as in low resolution (CPU-bound) gaming. At higher resolution gaming, most of the CPUs in our test perform within a fraction of each other.

[...] In terms of absolute performance across our benchmark range, the Ryzen 9 3950X has the lead. This metric also puts the 3900X above the 9900KS, because despite the 5.0 GHz all-core on 8-cores, moving to 12-core and 16-core at almost the same performance per core gives more of an advantage in our test suite's MT-heavy workloads. As we move to the more expensive HEDT chips, the 16-core and 18-core from Intel, then even with strong AVX-512 performance, it's not enough to offset other areas.

See also: AMD Ryzen 9 3950X 16 Core CPU Review Roundup – The Intel HEDT Destroyer For $749 US, Achieves Several World Records
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X Review: 16 Cores Muscles Into the Mainstream

Previously: 16-Core Ryzen 9 3950X and 24-core Threadripper 3 Will Launch in November
AMD Announces 3rd-Generation Threadripper CPUs, Ryzen 9 3950X available on November 25th, and More


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  • (Score: 0, Informative) by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15 2019, @06:43AM (3 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15 2019, @06:43AM (#920622)

    I just love how many insightful comments we get on hard-core tech articles! Nothing can be more hard core than CPUs, unless it is porn, apparently. Maybe the wrong people came over from the site-which-must-not-be-named? SoylentNews could be like South Africa, where the Dutch sent all their less-intelligent funamentalists, and so evolved into a liberal-progressive nation!! And of course, America, and SN, are much more like pre-end-of-apartheid South Africa. Bloody Brits!

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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15 2019, @11:31AM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15 2019, @11:31AM (#920656)

    Yea, Takyon is pretty good but besides that it is mostly crickets here unless they is some angle where idiots can spew their orange man bad bs. For awhile I was submitting stories about ASML, etc but they didn't really take.

    Personally I awaiting for the new threadrippers.

    • (Score: 2) by Pslytely Psycho on Friday November 15 2019, @12:43PM (1 child)

      by Pslytely Psycho (1218) on Friday November 15 2019, @12:43PM (#920666)

      Interesting.

      So you don't consider "SoylentNews could be like South Africa, where the Dutch sent all their less-intelligent funamentalists, and so evolved into a liberal-progressive nation!!" to be as jingoistic and bad as the "orange man bad," that you referenced?

      Don't rip conservatives, but denouncing liberals is A-OK?

      Telling, indeed.

      --
      Trump succeeds in making Nixon look respectable, Mission Accomplished!
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15 2019, @12:50PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 15 2019, @12:50PM (#920672)

        Uh, no. This entire thread is empty of any content except my short sentence about "I am waiting for the new threadrippers". I am literally the only one who has contributed to this thread.