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AMD Ryzen 9 7950X


A multi-threading monster of a computational CPU, hitting clock speeds we may solely beforehand get close to via critical overclocking. It is also bought an Eco Mode that delivers cool-running efficiency even in video games, although it is within the body charge battle the place Zen 4 falls down in opposition to the present finest Intel chips.


  • Monstrous multithreading efficiency
  • $100 lower than 5950X
  • Eco mode bangs
  • 5.9GHz?!

In opposition to

  • Do you want a 16-core CPU?
  • Struggles in gaming in opposition to Alder Lake
  • The place’s the actual X3D gaming chip?
  • Scorching. Or is it?

The AMD Ryzen 9 7950X is the vanguard for an entire new era of CPUs and GPUs launching in these subsequent few months. However, regardless of its many advances, an entire new AM5 motherboard platform, and glossy new heatspreader design, this is not the finest gaming CPU (opens in new tab) we have been hoping for.

I imply, it is good. And positively smashes the 16-core Ryzen 9 5950X (opens in new tab) from the Zen 3 era, however this Zen 4 chip has a resurgent Intel CPU structure to take care of in Alder Lake. And that is getting its personal Raptor Lake replace within the coming weeks, too.

However we have come a great distance (child), and it has been a gentle street from the heady instances of 2017, when AMD launched its very first AMD Ryzen processor. Closing the hole on Intel’s efficiency lead was solely a part of the puzzle for its burgeoning line of Zen architectured CPUs; consistency was at all times the watchword. AMD knew then the long-term success of its new processor line, whether or not in our gaming PCs, laptops, or in datacentres the world over, was right down to delivering on its guarantees era after era.

And it is onerous to argue that AMD hasn’t accomplished precisely that within the years since its inception. Every successive CPU era has constructed on these preliminary Zen foundations, confidently pushing the structure to better efficiency ranges, and with extra expansive specs lists. And it is accomplished so on a daily cadence, just about precisely when and the way it stated it will.

Delivering on its guarantees is what’s put AMD within the place it is in now—threatening Intel on all fronts. And, at a time when Intel has been struggling to ship what it promised, that is cemented AMD’s place. 

The brand new Ryzen 9 7950X is an evolution of the Zen 3 design, and is without delay a brute of a processor, operating on the ragged fringe of its thermal constraints, and but with an impressively elegant design. Even on the skin. 

Yeah, I am going to say it, I like that new heatspreader look. 

However it’s nonetheless not the processor I would decide up at the moment and there is a probability it would get savaged on the market for being extra of a by-product than a revolutionary CPU. There isn’t any spectacular new tech on show, no vertically bonded cache chips, no further cores, only a wholesome clock pace bump, some finessed microarchitecture, and a brand new socket.

Zen 4 structure and spec

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU

(Picture credit score: Future)

Ryzen 9 7950X spec

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU

(Picture credit score: Future)

Cores: 16

Threads: 32

Socket: AMD AM5

CCD lithography: TSMC 5nm

CCD die dimension: 70mm²

CCD transistor depend: 6.5 billion

IOD lithography: TSMC 6nm

IOD die dimension: 122mm²

IOD transistor depend: 3.4 billion

Max enhance clock: 5.7GHz

Base clock: 4.5GHz

L2 cache: 16MB

L3 cache: 64MB

Reminiscence assist: DDR5-5200 (non-OC)

TDP: 170W

Value: $699

At its most simple stage, the Ryzen 9 7950X is a straight 16-core, 32-thread CPU, packing a pair of eight-core compute chiplets along with an I/O die to get all the info into and out of the processor bundle. 

However although Zen 4 is a by-product structure constructed from Zen 3 (opens in new tab), there are some elementary variations. Firstly, it is constructed on a brand new course of node from its long-time TSMC foundry associate. The eight-core chiplet (CCD) is constructed on the 5nm lithography whereas the I/O die (IOD) has shifted to a 6nm node. 

The transfer from 7nm to 5nm is probably not big—although it’s actually delivering a extra environment friendly chip on the entire—however going from the 12nm IOD of Zen 3 to a brand new 6nm model is. And arguably the most important adjustments have truly been made in there on the platform stage, reasonably than within the new Zen 4 CCD. 

AMD has made the transfer to a DDR5 reminiscence controller, and it is also popped PCIe 5.0 assist in there too. That provides you a similar quick reminiscence as Intel’s Alder Lake platform, however with a brand new era interconnect that may supply big bandwidth alternatives for future graphics playing cards and next-gen SSDs. Which will not be right here till November, however hey, the brand new AM5 platform is prepared no less than.

AMD Zen 4 architecture

(Picture credit score: AMD)

However, for the primary time exterior of its APU vary, AMD can be packing built-in graphics into its chips, into the IOD. That is current-gen GPU know-how dropping into all of its Ryzen 7000-series CPUs. Earlier than you get too excited, nevertheless, AMD has been at pains to level out that is largely simply to maintain the lights on in your monitor with no separate GPU. It is also there to assist promote into the company Dell field world Intel has dominated as a result of most firms don’t desire discrete graphics playing cards of their workplace programs.

It is too distracting for the workforce. Or one thing. 

No matter, there are a pair of RDNA 2 compute models in there, which do not even get to characteristic within the chip’s reviewer’s information. It would not even seem on the important specs checklist of any of the Ryzen 7000-series processors; it is that irrelevant exterior the corpo world.

Except your GPU dies, after all, and it is advisable to get your PC up and operating whether or not it may possibly sport or not, till you remortgage the youngsters so you’ll be able to afford a brand new RTX 4090 (opens in new tab). However it does have one different probably helpful characteristic: Hybrid Graphics. 

It is mainly like a gaming laptop computer, the place more often than not the show is definitely related to the CPU’s built-in graphics, and the beefy discrete GPU solely kicks in when a sport is performed or one thing else in want of graphics {hardware}. Sure, now you can plug immediately into the motherboard and nonetheless sport in your highly effective graphics card.

As a PC gamer, you in all probability should not do this, although, as a result of it does have an effect on the gaming efficiency of your system. To an impressively negligible extent, I’ve to confess given what it is doing. At its very worst I noticed a ten% drop at 1080p body charges, however typically, it was round 3–5% down. That is not unhealthy, however nonetheless not likely price it should you’re chasing the very best body charge you’ll be able to squeeze out of your gaming rig.

AMD Zen 4 architecture

(Picture credit score: AMD)

Over in that 5nm CCD, there have been another adjustments made. It is primarily the identical core format as Zen 3, with the identical 32MB L3 cache catering to an eight-core advanced. To get to its 16-core make-up the Ryzen 9 7950X comes with a pair of these compute dies, every holding eight cores and a complete of 64MB of L3 cache. However there is a doubling of the L2 cache to assist cut back general latency with every core getting its personal 1MB L2 “to offer vital information sooner,” says AMD’s Mark Papermaster throughout our introduction to the structure.

Although this further cache bump just isn’t in the identical league because the latest Ryzen 7 5800X3D (opens in new tab), however we’ll come again to the way forward for 3D V-cache in a while. As will AMD itself; there is a cause there isn’t any Ryzen 9 7800X within the launch lineup.

“With Zen 3 we elevated the execution width,” Papermaster tells us. “And so with Zen 4 it grew to become vital for us to work on how we feed the directions even sooner into the machine. And that is why you see many of the enhancements coming from the entrance finish and department prediction. Actually that makes up nearly 60% of that IPC achieve.”

That is echoed by AMD architect Mike Clark, the daddy of Zen, throughout our deep dive. 

“With Zen 4 as barely a by-product structure, we knew that with Zen 3 we actually elevated the execution aspect, added a pair extra execution models. However we knew with Zen 4 we want to have the ability to feed these issues as quick as doable to essentially get the advantage of the brand new wider engine that now we have.”

AMD Zen 4 architecture

(Picture credit score: AMD)

So, it is the entrance finish of the Zen 4 structure the place AMD has put probably the most thought in from a core design perspective. And that begins with the department prediction block, as a result of that is the place quite a lot of the effectivity and efficiency of a chip design might be gained or misplaced.

“One of the inefficient issues,” says Clark, “is clearly executing the incorrect directions, after which having to throw that away. So we wish to be certain we’re on the best path, in addition to getting that proper path within the machine as quick as doable”

In microarchitecture phrases, it is mainly all about widening the funnel on the prime, whereas additionally jamming extra information down into the integer and floating level execution machine. That is my dumb method of claiming AMD is trying to widen any of the bottlenecks of the Zen 3 design.

The trade-off with rising the cache, nevertheless, is a rise in latency, however that is one thing AMD has internalised as a part of its design course of with Zen 4. The latency has nonetheless gone up, however the truth that it may possibly get extra directions operating via the processor at anybody time, and with the general efficiency enhancements the structure then affords, that may offset what it is calling “a small improve in latency.”

How does the Ryzen 9 7950X carry out?

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU in a motherboard socket

(Picture credit score: Future)

I imply, it’s actually quick. I did a little bit of a double take testing the numbers once I noticed the Cinebench R23 single thread run tipping the odd core as much as 5.9GHz. Even steady at 5.8GHz was fairly stunning. It is not fairly that prime beneath all-core load, however 5.4GHz throughout all 16 cores nonetheless makes it one blazing chip.

It is blazing in one other method, too, as a result of rattling, does this factor get scorching?! Really, no. It is okay. AMD says that “At 95 levels it’s not operating scorching, reasonably it is going to deliberately go to this temperature as a lot as doable beneath load as a result of the ability administration system is aware of that that is the perfect technique to squeeze probably the most efficiency out of the chip with out damaging it.”

Apparently, the Ryzen 7000-series processors are designed to run at this stage “24/7 with out threat of harm or deterioration.”

However does quick and scorching make it the last word gaming processor? Not likely, by no means actually. On that rating, it is going to usually get outperformed by the eight-core Ryzen 7 7700X which launches alongside it. It’s comfortably sooner than the earlier era’s Ryzen 9 5950X, which is vital, particularly as that was priced some $100 increased on launch.

It additionally commonly outpaces the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, which was AMD’s most up-to-date play for the quickest gaming CPU crown. However in opposition to Intel… nicely, the Core i9 12900K (opens in new tab) remains to be trying like an excellent gaming processor. 

Gaming efficiency

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X benchmarks

(Picture credit score: Future)

In gaming phrases, with the very same GPU, the identical drivers, and the identical OS, Intel’s Core i9 12900K retains itself forward of this, AMD’s newest chip. The chip it has been calling “one of the best for players and creators.”

There is not a sport in our take a look at suite which has the brand new Zen 4 chip forward of Intel’s Alder Lake CPU. Which does not make for excellent studying when you think about that it’s going to quickly get replaced by a good speedier Raptor Lake vary of processors that might push gaming efficiency even additional forward of AMD’s chips.

Creator efficiency

On the multi-threaded aspect, nevertheless, AMD’s high-speed benefit involves the fore. Critically, I am going to take that 95°C temperature if I can have all 16 cores working at 5.4GHz for the length. That makes all of the distinction relating to issues like rendering and encoding, and AMD’s dominance is obvious to see.

Within the Blender render take a look at, the Ryzen 9 7950X is over 50% sooner than the Core i9 12900K, and over 40% sooner than the Zen 3-based Ryzen 9 5950X. That highlights simply what a multi-threaded monster the brand new Zen 4 platform can create, and is de facto the place all these front-end enhancements actually come to the fore.

It is the wedding of brute-forcing the clock pace and the magnificence of these microarchitecture tweaks that ship a processor that may be the idea of a robust residence workstation.

I imply, there is a cause the high-end desktop (HEDT) CPU market is lifeless; these previous Intel Core X chips, and even AMD’s personal Threadripper. They do not seem on the PC roadmap exterior of the skilled area lately. And that is as a result of AMD gambled on increased core counts after which once more on an modern chiplet design that has been one of many greatest success tales in trendy processor creation.

However you do not want a Threadripper chip when the brand new Ryzen 9 7950X rocks up with 16 cores of Zen 4 grunt and can comfortably push every one in all them to five.4GHz for a fraction of its worth. There are few bed room videographers or renderers who would not be enthusiastic concerning the efficiency of this chip and would argue paying one other $1,700 for a 24-core Threadripper Professional makes any type of sense.

The brand new AM5 platform’s penchant for the quantity 5 is demonstrated by the rise in reminiscence bandwidth owing to the assist for DDR5 reminiscence. With the brand new EXPO reminiscence profiles tailor-made for each DDR5 and AMD’s new platform, we may immediately hit the highest frequency with our G.Talent DDR5-6000 package. That delivers a simple 68% improve in reminiscence bandwidth over the earlier Zen 3 era.

The advantages of the PCIe 5 interface, nevertheless, will not manifest till we pay money for some stable state storage drives maxing out the elevated bandwidth once they arrive in November.

It is attention-grabbing to notice, although, that whereas our AMD system is operating with 32GB of DDR5-6000, our Intel Alder Lake machine is slumming it with one other G.Talent set, however a 32GB package operating at DDR5-5600. And it nonetheless affords increased reminiscence bandwidth.

System efficiency

However what of effectivity? That was the watchword across the change to Zen 4 and a 5nm CCD, however the Ryzen 9 7950X has a TDP of 170W and a max socket energy of 230W. Even the Ryzen 5 7600X has a excessive TDP of 105W versus the earlier gen at 65W.

However the efficiency per watt of Zen 4 is spectacular, particularly relating to gaming. Measured in Far Cry 6 we’re getting 1.61fps per watt of energy, in contrast with lower than 1fps per watt with the previous Ryzen 9 5950X. It is also loads cooler once you’re speaking about constant gaming workloads.

Positive, beneath a 100% all-core load the Zen 4 cores are stable at over 95°C, however in video games, we measured it at simply 65°C.

What’s attention-grabbing, nevertheless, is that for all of the discuss of Intel’s determined energy calls for making its chips energy hungry and inefficient, the Core i9 12900K is each higher by way of efficiency per watt and thermals.

You’ll be able to take the shackles off Intel’s chips, and permit them to make use of all the ability in your motherboard’s BIOS, however should you keep on with Intel’s personal specs they will not stretch to the identical ranges. Okay, it is going to nonetheless prime the 200W level when thrashing via Cinebench R23, however in video games, you are 81W and 50°C—decrease than this 5nm Ryzen chip.

Eco Mode efficiency

PC Gamer take a look at rig


Motherboard: ASRock X670E Taichi

Reminiscence: G.Talent Trident Z5 Neo DDR5-6000 CL30 2x 16GB


Motherboard: Asus ROG Z690 Hero

Reminiscence: G.Talent Trident Z5 RGB DDR5-5600 CL36 2x 16GB

Graphics card: Nvidia RTX 3080 10GB

Storage: 1TB WD Black SN850

Cooler: Corsair H100i RGB


Chassis: DimasTech Mini V2


Even in Eco Mode, the Ryzen 9 7950X cannot carry its efficiency per watt as much as the degrees of the Alder Lake chip. However Eco Mode remains to be one of many greatest wins for the brand new Zen 4 cores. The efficiency enhance going from 7nm to 5nm is at its biggest on the 65W stage, and that’s highlighted by simply how a lot sooner the Zen 4 chip is, even locked to 65W, in contrast with the Ryzen 9 5950X. 

In Eco Mode, it is going to additionally nonetheless beat the Core i9 12900K in inventive functions, too.

Truthfully, if I am operating a Zen 4 chip in my rig, I’ll be setting it to Eco Mode on a regular basis. You do not want the additional multi-threading efficiency for more often than not you utilize your PC, and once you do, simply swap it out of Eco Mode and let these cores fly. You barely lose any efficiency whereas gaming—particularly not on the 1440p or 4K resolutions—and the decrease temps will make for a quieter rig, too. 

Admittedly for the time being that is not really easy. Within the pre-release BIOSes you must dig round within the AMD Overclocking settings to manually set PPT limits, and so forth. however AMD is promising to make it a extra accessible characteristic in your Home windows desktop after launch.

I hope it does, as a result of Eco Mode is without doubt one of the issues which units the Zen chips aside, and it is higher than ever.

How does the Ryzen 9 7950X stack up?

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU

(Picture credit score: Future)

The place does the brand new Zen 4 flagship chip stand within the CPU market? In the present day, it is one of the best chip for creators, and perhaps even one of the best chip for creators who additionally sport. However it’s actually not one of the best gaming CPU.

This $700 16-core processor, regardless of its heady 5.8GHz clock pace, nonetheless falls behind Intel’s barely cheaper Core i9 12900K relating to uncooked body charges. And you’ll nonetheless get the GPU-less KF model of that Alder Lake CPU for a lot lower than that. Although provided that Raptor Lake is on its method very quickly I would not advocate that buy proper now, both.

However the multicore efficiency is fairly staggering. If you wish to throw a ton of advanced computational duties at a shopper platform, say for video rendering or encoding, then there may be nothing on the market on this worth bracket that may come near the processing prowess of AMD’s new Zen 4 prime chip.

Its last-gen flagship all of the sudden appears very previous certainly.

That is true even should you restrict the Ryzen 9 7950X to only 65W. I feel Eco Mode is the factor that has impressed me most concerning the new structure, exhibiting simply how environment friendly it may be. Sadly, to be aggressive with Intel’s Alder Lake, AMD has needed to go all out on the ability and thermals by default to provide its Zen 4 cores sufficient headroom to carry out at their finest. 

And the uncooked clock pace numbers are spectacular, too. I imply, hitting 5.8GHz inventory, out of the field is one thing I do not assume many people have been actually anticipating. 

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU

(Picture credit score: Future)

I have been testing the eight-core Ryzen 7 7700X alongside this 16-core chip, and that may be a efficiency gaming chip that may typically even beat the Ryzen 9 7950X. However it, too, is shy of the Alder Lake competitors in uncooked body charges, although can no less than match it by way of efficiency per watt.

Although if we’re speaking about AMD gaming CPUs, there’s a huge, flappy-eared gray mammal within the room. There isn’t any Ryzen 7 7800X within the launch lineup, and that appears like a niche tailored for a cached-out X3D chip, alongside the traces of the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, to pop into. With an unlimited chunk of additional L3 cache to play with, the 3D V-cache design is made for gaming, and that ought to be AMD’s actual play for one of the best gaming CPU. Although when that launches, we nonetheless do not know.

AMD has been very cagey about its plans, initially suggesting it will be launched this 12 months and now we’re not so positive. Joe Macri instructed us that “we’re not making an attempt to dribble issues out to you, the cycle time of operating stuff via the fab simply takes longer once you wish to take two items of silicon and actually fuse them collectively on the molecular stage.”

Till it is bought these huge cache chips bonded onto the CPU we’ll have to attend and see what further gaming impression the expanded L3 cache can have alongside a Zen 4 core.

Ryzen 9 7950X verdict

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X CPU

(Picture credit score: Future)

I really feel fairly optimistic about AMD’s prime Zen 4 processor, which is perhaps somewhat unusual provided that it is extra evolution than revolution and would not fairly have the standout efficiency leaps that characterised the earlier generations of Zen chips. 

However I feel we have in all probability been spoiled by AMD in latest instances.

The Ryzen 9 7950X remains to be an enormous generational soar over the Ryzen 9 5950X, however it hasn’t managed a convincing exhibiting in opposition to its essential Intel rival. That is very true in gaming, and whereas the multi-threaded efficiency is fairly spectacular, we’re able the place we all know Intel’s bumping that up with its incoming Raptor Lake chips and that might completely negate the enhancements AMD has managed to muster for Zen 4.

Inevitably then you’ll doubtless see loads made about it being a disappointing launch. However, to me, it appears like a assured, constant launch. You may argue it is perhaps not tremendous formidable, however AMD has bought the place it’s at the moment by at all times delivering on its Zen guarantees, and but once more Dr. Su’s gang has completely accomplished that.

The Ryzen 9 7950X is the quickest, hottest, most power-hungry Zen chip but, however although it isn’t the gaming champ it’s nonetheless one of the best all-round AMD CPU.

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X

A multi-threading monster of a computational CPU, hitting clock speeds we may solely beforehand get close to via critical overclocking. It is also bought an Eco Mode that delivers cool-running efficiency even in video games, although it is within the body charge battle the place Zen 4 falls down in opposition to the present finest Intel chips.

Dave has been gaming for the reason that days of Zaxxon and Girl Bug on the Colecovision, and code books for the Commodore Vic 20 (Demise Race 2000!). He constructed his first gaming PC on the tender age of 16, and at last completed bug-fixing the Cyrix-based system round a 12 months later. When he dropped it out of the window. He first began writing for Official PlayStation Journal and Xbox World many many years in the past, then moved onto PC Format full-time, then PC Gamer, TechRadar, and T3 amongst others. Now he is again, writing concerning the nightmarish graphics card market, CPUs with extra cores than sense, gaming laptops hotter than the solar, and SSDs extra capacious than a Cybertruck. blind fold fuck. queen of bath sheeba nude. sexvid block head.