The appearance of a new desktop platform always arouses increased interest among those users who need the most powerful solutions in this format. Socket AM5 becomes the basis for AMD systems for the next three to five years, so the nuances of such an update are even more interesting than usual. It’s time to see if the high expectations came true. We will conduct practical experiments using a ready-made assembly from the ARTLINE company, based on the flagship 16-core Ryzen 9 7950X processor complete with a GeForce RTX 3090 24 GB video card. This is exactly the case when it is not enough to specify only the key components, but more on that later.
AMD Ryzen 7000 processors
The starting lineup includes four models: Ryzen 9 7950X, Ryzen 9 7900X, Ryzen 7 7700X, and Ryzen 5 7600X. The cost of the new CPUs varies from $299 for a 6-core 12-thread chip to $699 for a flagship 16-core processor.
|Cores/threads||Frequency||L2+L3 cache||TDP/PPT||Recommended price|
|Ryzen 9 7950X||16/32||4.5/5.7 GHz||16+64 MB||170/230 W||$699|
|Ryzen 9 7900X||12/24||4.7/5.6 GHz||12+64 MB||170/230 W||$549|
|Ryzen 7 7700X||8/16||4.5/5.4 GHz||8+64 MB||105/142 W||$399|
|Ryzen 5 7600X||6/12||4.7/5.3 GHz||6+64 MB||105/142 W||$299|
As you can see, the number of computers has not changed compared to the models of the previous generation. Recommended prices are also close to the Ryzen 5000 at launch. At the same time, the developer promises a significant increase in performance, improved energy efficiency, and expanded functionality for the new Raphael family processors.
Zen 4 architecture and CPU layout
Ryzen 7000 chips are based on the Zen 4 computing architecture. According to the manufacturer, several technical improvements and internal optimizations allowed to increase the performance per clock (IPC) by up to 13%. Such a final integral indicator depends significantly on the applications used.
The increase in IPC was achieved using internal architectural optimizations, which primarily affected the front-end part of the design. In particular, the transition prediction module has been improved, the volumes of the microoperation cache and L1 BTB have been increased, as well as the capacity of the reorder buffer (ROB).
The transition to a 5-nanometer technological process allowed developers to double the amount of cache memory of the second level. In Zen 4 chips, the L2 capacity has been increased from 512 KB to 1 MB for each core. Support has become another long-awaited option for specialized tasks of the AVX-512 instruction set to accelerate HPC calculations and AI algorithms.
We will remind that the chiplet layout is still used for new CPUs. In the top versions of the processors, a pair of 8-core CCDs (Core Complex Die) now manufactured by TSMC according to the standards of the most advanced 5 nm technological process are located on the same substrate, as well as a fundamentally new IOD crystal, which is also produced by a Taiwanese company, but already at 6 nm technology.
Despite the significant increase in the transistor budget (6.57 billion vs. 4.15 billion), the physical dimensions of the CCD crystals have even decreased – 70.8 mm² instead of 83.7 mm² in Zen 3. Obviously, in this case, the heat flow increases, which means there will potentially be more questions about heat distribution and removal. Let’s see how AMD engineers coped with this.
As for the IOD crystal responsible for peripheral systems, its overall dimensions have practically not changed – 124.7 mm² versus 124.9 mm². However, their equipment differs radically. IOD in Zen 4 processors includes an integrated video core with RDNA 2 architecture. All chips of the new series received integrated graphics. In terms of performance, the iGPU is not as fast as AMD’s APU, but a similar solution allows Ryzen 7000 owners to do without a discrete video card in certain situations.
The new IOD also includes DDR5 RAM controllers and PCI Express 5.0 buses, enabling future high-speed SSDs and graphics cards to be used with AMD’s new platform.
The transition to 5-nanometer crystals also made it possible to significantly increase the operating clock frequencies of the CPU – the flagship at its peak is capable of accelerating to 5.7 GHz. Therefore, AMD claims a final increase in single-threaded performance of up to ~29%.
In multi-threaded mode, AMD promises an even greater increase. For example, comparing the capabilities of the 16-core Ryzen 9 7950X and the Ryzen 9 5950X, the results of the new CPU are 30-48% better. And even in games, the top representative Zen 4 had an advantage of 6-35%.
Socket AM5 platform
Along with the processors, a new desktop platform was also introduced. To work with the Ryzen 7000, you will need motherboards with a Socket AM5 processor connector. The previous Socket AM4 platform lasted 5 years without changing the main connector, although during this time it was not without nuances regarding compatibility.
In the case of the Ryzen 7000, there was no doubt that such drastic architectural and peripheral changes would require a thorough redesign of the entire platform. Here, first of all, it is worth noting a constructive change. Socket AM5 has an LGA1718 layout with pins, while instead of legs on the processor substrate, contact pads are provided. The main competitor has been using this format for a long time, and now AMD has turned to this option.
Considering the TDP of the new chips, it was also necessary to increase the power reserves of the power units. Motherboards should now be able to deliver up to 230W on the CPU socket. Well, and of course, support for DDR5 standard RAM, as well as PCI-E 5.0 bus, requires a suitable schematic binding.
To simplify the transition to the new platform, the manufacturer has maintained compatibility with the attachment of coolers that were used for Socket AM4. A nice option, considering the huge park of cooling systems, which are quite suitable for cooling Ryzen 7000 chips.
At the start of sales, motherboards based on the top AMD X670/X670E chipsets will be presented on the market. Obviously, a powerful power unit, PCI-E 5.0 binding, and advanced functionality will affect the cost of such devices.
In October, more affordable AMD B650/B650E models appeared. Initially, it was assumed that Extreme versions of chipsets would be offered only for top logic, but a similar approach is also relevant for mass solutions.
As for RAM, there are no alternatives to DDR5. Ryzen 7000 processors simply do not support RAM of another standard. The typical mode for new CPUs will be DDR5-5200. At the same time, AMD plans to develop the AMD EXPO (EXTended Profile for Overclocking) technology, which involves creating profiles similar to XMP to go beyond the standard modes in one click.
AMD says it will support Socket AM5 until at least 2025. Given the company’s plans, this means that this platform will be able to be used together with 4-nanometer chips based on Zen 5, as well as variations with an additional 3D V-Cache buffer.
ARTLINE system unit based on Ryzen 9 7950X
For a visual introduction to the new platform, we chose a computer from ARTLINE — a system based on the model ARTLINE Overlord STRIXv102Winw with certain modifications. It is assembled in a case ASUS ROG Strix Helios White Edition and has a very impressive appearance.
First, it is a very large case of the Mid-Tower format (almost 60 cm high and more than half a meter long), which even without the system weighs as much as 18 kg (the finished computer we had for review is about 26 kg).
It has a durable brushed aluminum chassis and tempered glass panels. In a normal usage pattern, the computer is not often moved from place to place, but in the case of our test bench, the special cloth carrying handles came in handy.
ASUS ROG Strix Helios supports the installation of ATX/EATX form factor motherboards and three video cards in standard position or two in a vertical orientation (using the included mounting bar). The case provides for the installation of liquid cooling systems (installation of a pump, tank, and frontal radiator up to 420 mm in size and upper radiator up to 360 mm in size).
On the upper part of the case, there is an interface panel with a USB 3.1 Gen2 Type-C port, four USB 3.0 ports, and buttons for controlling the backlight and fans.
Almost all components in the system unit have an unusual white color, and thanks to the transparent side of the case, complex RGB lighting is perfectly visible – coolers, video card, motherboard, front panel, and even the power cable to the video card and the ARTLINE branded panel, behind which the power supply unit is “hidden” (one of the few elements of the traditional black color). ASUS proprietary technology Aura Sync combines all this into a single synchronous lighting system. It should be noted that the white color of almost all components very favorably emphasizes the backlight: it does not go dim on traditional black surfaces, but on the contrary, evenly illuminates the “insides” of the computer.
Configuration of the tested system:
- Processor: AMD Ryzen 9 7950X
- Motherboard: ASUS ROG CROSSHAIR X670E HERO
- RAM: 2×16 GB DDR5-6000 DDR5 SDRAM (G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB F5-6000J4040F16GX2-TZ5RS)
- Video card: ASUS ROG Strix RTX3090 24 GB (ASUS ROG-STRIX-RTX3090-O24G-WHITE)
- Drives: WD_BLACK SN770 1 TB (M.2 2280 PCI-E Gen4 x4), Samsung SSD 870 QVO 2 TB (SATA-III)
- Cooling system: ASUS ROG Strix LC 360 RGB White Edition
- Power supply unit: ASUS ROG-STRIX-1000G (1000 W Gold)
A few words about the features of the test configuration. The top 16-core Ryzen 9 7950X model is used for the PC. The processor supports SMT technology, allowing simultaneous processing of up to 32 data streams.
The standard frequency formula of this model is 4.5/5.7 GHz. But, as can already be seen even on the CPU-Z screen, the processor was accelerated even to 5.75 GHz. In the new chips, the L3 cache memory capacity remained at the same level – 64 MB, but the L2 buffer was doubled – up to 1 MB per core. Therefore, the total size of the L2+L3 cache, in this case, is an impressive 80 MB.
TDP is 170 W. The PPT (Package Power Target) parameter does not always appear in the technical description, but do not forget that for older Ryzen 7000 models it is 230 W. And this is definitely a challenge for the cooling system.
It is not surprising that the ASUS ROG Strix LC 360 RGB White Edition liquid cooling system is used in this case. With such potential power consumption, it will be problematic to get by with a mediocre cooler. It is precisely for this reason that Ryzen 7000 processors are offered without standard coolers at all.
The platform is assembled based on the ASUS ROG CROSSHAIR X670E HERO motherboard. Model based on AMD X670E with a powerful 20-phase processor power subsystem. Such a VRM power module no longer seems redundant when using processors with increased energy appetites. The board is equipped with a pair of PCI-E x16 5.0 slots, as well as two connectors for future high-speed M.2 PCI-E 5.0 drives. Another pair of M.2 PCI-E 4.0 will also allow configuring the disk subsystem based on performance SSDs. Support for DDR5-6400+ is declared, which will also come in handy during experiments with powerful Raphael.
A dual-channel set of G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB F5-6000J4040F16GX2-TZ5RS RAM with a total volume of 32 GB and a timing formula of 40-40-40-96 was used for the PC.
Also, the platform is loaded with a slightly forced video card ASUS ROG Strix RTX 3090 24 GB (ASUS ROG-STRIX-RTX3090-O24G-WHITE) in a version with a white protective cover to match the general tone of the system. Even after the release of the NVIDIA graphics adapters of the new generation, the RTX 3090 models remain in the manufacturer’s cage.
For certain tasks, models with 24 GB of memory will be most in demand. However, if desired, the platform can be easily equipped with a new GeForce RTX 4090 24 GB. These models are already on sale in Ukraine and may well become a component of a similar configuration.
The data storage subsystem in this case consists of a pair of drives – a faster WD_BLACK SN770 1 TB for the system partition and a more capacious Samsung SSD 870 QVO 2 TB for the rest.
The power supply unit ASUS ROG-STRIX-1000G with a capacity of 1000 W is quite enough for such a configuration.
Ryzen 9 7950X performance
Before starting to determine the performance of the new CPU, we decided to check how the Ryzen 9 7950X works with RAM. We remind you that the ARTLINE system was equipped with DDR5-6000 modules.
Despite the fact that the base for Ryzen 7000 is DDR5-5200, it definitely makes sense to use higher-speed modules. Moreover, the optimal result should be provided by DDR5-6000 kits, which allow the memory controller to be used in a synchronous mode without a 1:2 reduction factor.
73-76 GB/s read/write performance was previously unattainable for an AMD platform. But in general, transfers are still somewhat lower than those provided by Intel processors. A delay of 73 ns is normal, although not the best result. Although here we can discount the fact that the memory kit does not have the best basic timing formula (40-40-40-96) for this mode.
What we pay special attention to is the very good data transfer rate indicators for the L2 and L3 caches. A significant improvement over previous generation chips. In addition, delays have also become smaller.
The primary testing of new processors in Cinebench R23 has become an almost classical approach to evaluating CPU capabilities. This stage allows you to quickly reveal the potential of chips for resource-intensive rendering tasks.
Based on the results of this stage alone, it is possible to draw the first conclusions. As a benchmark in single-threaded mode, the Ryzen 9 7950X was able to score 2,052 points and 37,576 points when all cores were loaded. If we compare these indicators with those of AMD’s 16-core predecessor, the Ryzen 9 5950X, the latter provides approximately 1650/26000 points at this stage. If we evaluate the relative indicators, we can see that the novelty in single-stream mode has accelerated by 25%, while in multi-stream mode the results have already improved by 44%. Not bad at all, considering that we are talking about chips with the same functional formula – 16 cores and 32 threads.
What about competing solutions from Intel? Ryzen 9 7950X quite simply dealt with the top processor of the 12th generation – Core i9-12900K, which in Cinebench R23 scores approximately 2000/27000 points. In this case, AMD’s new processor managed to overtake the opponent even in single-threaded mode, which has always been a strong point of Intel chips. Well, even the Ryzen 9 5950X competed quite successfully with the Core i9-12900K in multi-core, so the significant advantage of the Ryzen 9 7950X here was not even surprising.
The comparison of indicators with those for the new Core i9-13900K looks more interesting. Raptor Lake processors went on sale just a few days ago. We have not yet had the opportunity to familiarize ourselves with the results of the 13th generation Core chips, but there are already many materials on the topic on the Internet. Therefore, we can focus on the obtained indicators of independent experts. We will remind you that Intel has modernized the architecture, increased the amount of cache memory, and significantly increased the clock frequencies. In addition, the manufacturer in some cases also increased the number of functional blocks. As a result, the flagship Core i9-13900K received a functional formula of 8/16+16, leaving the number of productive cores (P-Cores) with Hyper-Threading support at 8, while the number of additional energy-efficient ones (E-Cores) increased from 8 to 16.
After such manipulations, the flagship of the new Intel line also received a significant acceleration. In particular, in the Cinebench R23 rendering test, it scores around 2250/39000 points. That is, the Core i9-13900K has a certain advantage over the Ryzen 9 7950X, but the indicators are quite close, especially in multi-threaded mode. However, similar acceleration is achieved by the Core i9-13900K not so easily. Power consumption under high load on all cores even in stock mode is about 285 W, while after removing consumption restrictions, it can even increase to 380-400 W. In turn, the Ryzen 9 7950X at its peak consumes about 235 W, but we will return to this nuance later.
We also tested the processor capabilities in Blender 3.3.0 rendering. The Ryzen 9 7950X copes with this task perfectly, scoring about 613 points. At the same time, the top-end Core i9-13900K has about 580-600 points, while its predecessor, the Core i9-12900K, barely scores 400 points at all. Ryzen 9 5950X also had much more modest indicators than modern models – about 420 points.
A test of the capabilities in the synthetics from the CPU-Z utility indicates that the Ryzen 9 7950X here significantly improved the performance of the Ryzen 9 5950X (680/12300 points), scoring 788 points in single-threaded mode and 15,873 in multi-threaded mode. Core i9-12900K has an advantage in single-thread and is significantly inferior in multi-thread mode – 820/11 400, but Core i9-13900K is already ahead of the AMD chip in both cases – 890/16 700 points.
We will remind that Ryzen 7000 processors received support for AVX-512 vector instructions. Although they are rarely used for typical desktop tasks, they can significantly speed up processing in specific applications. In turn, Intel, on the contrary, believes that AVX-512 is not needed for desktop chips at all. For the Core-12th generation, support for this set was initially implemented for performance P-Core cores. But over time, Intel decided to abandon such an option, trying to block the possibility of activating AVX-512 at the BIOS level. The official explanation is the increase in heating and energy consumption of chips, as well as the need to deactivate energy-efficient E-Cores. Although it is more similar to the desire of the manufacturer to separate the areas of application of mass consumer CPUs and more expensive Xeon chips. Therefore, it is not surprising that for the 13th generation Core, the AVX-512 instruction set is generally deactivated at the crystal level. Does this increase the attractiveness of AMD chips, which, on the contrary, became available with such an option? Well, at least it does not reduce it, and if the tasks use these instructions, then the new Ryzen will be better.
Another synthetic test is GeekBench 5. Here Ryzen 9 7950X also shows convincing results – 2255/22560 points. The new Core i9-13900K in a single thread has approximately the same indicators and is about 10% higher when using all available threads. For comparison, the Ryzen 9 5950X scores here 1700/16500, and the Core i9-12900K scores 2000/18500.
The Performance Mark 10.2 utility also allows you to evaluate the capabilities of the platform based on the results of a set of test stages. The platform’s overall integrated score of 10,881 points means little without comparison. At the same time, as noted in the application itself, this platform score is higher than 99% of systems tested with Performance Mark. Of course, the indicators of the CPU, video card, drives, and RAM are taken into account here. All values are available on the screens. It is possible to compare them with the indicators of your systems.
Another comprehensive test of PCMark 10 with a set of diverse tasks, starting from browsing and typical office packages, ending with photo processing, scene rendering, and video editing. The total score is 9684 points. For reference, Core i9-13900K scores around 10,100 points, and Core i9-12900K – ~9400.
The new Ryzen already traditionally show themselves well in archivers. If in 7-Zip at the compression stage the Core i9-13900K was able to show a similar result, then when unpacking the data, the Ryzen 9 7950X’s performance turned out to be unattainable for the aggressive newcomer Intel. Here, AMD’s flagship demonstrates sky-high 267,000 MIPS, while the Core i9-13900K delivers around 205,000 MIPS and 232,000 MIPS when power consumption is uncapped. A large amount of cache memory works in favor of the AMD chip here.
In WinRAR, the performance of the Ryzen 9 7950X and Core i9-13900K is close, the Intel chip has a slight advantage. At the same time, both chips are significantly ahead of their predecessors.
This is how we got closer to game synthetics. The results of the top Ryzen with Zen 4 architecture are also convincing here. Internalmodernization and a significant increase in operating frequencies benefited the Raphael chips. At the same time, if you take into account the performance of the Intel chips in this test, both Core i9s still have a significant advantage here. However, indicators in game synthetics do not always reflect the state of affairs in real projects.
Despite the fact that we did not have the opportunity to compare the performance of different platforms in practice, in the presence of a “charged” PC with a GeForce RTX 3090 24 GB video card, we took the opportunity to obtain the system results in heavy projects with high settings of image quality in 1920× modes 1080 and 3840×2160.
Based on the comparative results of our colleagues, we can note that the new AMD chips have significantly improved gaming performance. In this component, older Ryzen 7000s even have a minimal advantage over 12th generation Core processors on average. Here we can talk about parity and this is tangible progress.
The appearance of the Core i9-13900K somewhat brought Intel chips back to the fore. The top model is in most cases 5-10% faster than the Ryzen 9 7950X when it comes to 1920×1080 mode using the most powerful video cards. As resolution increases, the difference in overall results decreases and is almost non-existent in 4K mode.
Ryzen 9 7950X power consumption and heating
Another nuance of the new platform that deserves special attention is the power consumption of the Ryzen 7000 processors. According to the declared technical characteristics, the TDP (Thermal Design Power) of the older models of the line has increased significantly compared to that of its predecessors and is now 170 W. In addition, the PPT (Package Power Target) parameter has also increased to 230 W.
Therefore, it was particularly interesting to evaluate how the ASUS ROG Strix LC 360 RGB White Edition liquid cooling system will cope with the Ryzen 9 7950X.
During the AIDA64 stress test, the chip’s power consumption was around 205-210 W. At the same time, the CPU temperature was kept within 90C. The constant operating frequency of the processor in such conditions is about 5150 MHz.
Surprisingly, the Cinebench R23 test strained the system even more. When rendering a scene in multi-threaded mode, the CPU even slightly exceeded the specified PPT, requiring 235 watts. At the same time, the operating clock frequency of the CPU was kept in the range of 5050–5100 MHz while the temperature of the Ryzen 9 7950X reached 95C. Yes, indeed, there is no mistake here. Even with the presence of a liquid cooling system for the top Ryzen 7000 with two CCDs, similar values should be expected under heavy load on all cores.
95C is the new normal according to AMD. The fact is that for Ryzen 7000, the very principle of dynamic adjustment of key parameters has been changed. The chip allows the temperature to rise up to 95C, simultaneously increasing the operating frequency as much as possible. If high efficiency cooling system is used, the CPU operating frequency will exceed 5 GHz on all computers. In fact, we have an actual rule, the more effective the cooling, the higher the operating frequency of the processor under high load.
A liquid cooling system is therefore highly desirable, especially for the older Ryzen 7000 models with 12-16 cores, which have a TDP of 170W and a PPT of 230W. If mediocre air coolers are used with such CPUs, the processor will also heat up to 95C, but at the same time, the operating frequency and supply voltage will decrease significantly. That is, such parameters will be selected that will allow for keeping the temperature of the chip within the specified limits. Of course, this will affect the final performance. Although it is possible to use a mediocre cooler with the top Ryzen 7000, it is not logical. What is the point of buying an expensive processor and not using its full potential?
In general, how safe is heating and long-term use of the chip at 95C? The developers assure that it is completely safe to refer to a similar approach in the case of mobile processors. Yes, such CPU temperatures are unusual for desktops. But, obviously, you’ll have to get used to it. Because this is not only a feature of top models for Socket AM5. The new 13th generation Core processors consume even more energy and heat up to higher temperatures. The liquid cooling system era is returning, and now we can’t do without them, especially in cases with powerful CPUs.
As for the heating of the Ryzen 9 7950X during significant loads, in our case, for example, the temperature of the chip in games was kept at the level of 65-70C. Of course, such indicators are already more common.
AMD’s new desktop platform significantly expands functionality and allows you to use the most powerful processors for systems of a similar format. The developers modernized the interfaces by adding support for the PCI-E 5.0 bus and the ability to use DDR5 standard RAM. In turn, the new Ryzen 7000 processors have significantly raised the performance bar compared to the capabilities of the chips of the previous generation. The release of Raptor Lake processors from the main competitor does not allow AMD to feel euphoric, rest on their laurels, and enjoy the title of “manufacturer of the most powerful CPUs”. However, this kind of competition ultimately only benefits the users, who have to get their profit from such a situation.
As for the flagship of the new processor line – Ryzen 9 7950X, it is a very powerful 16-core chip with increased speed for both single-threaded and multi-threaded conditions. In some cases, it has an advantage of up to 40% over its predecessor with the same number of computing units. Architectural changes of Zen 4, modern manufacturing process, significantly increased operating clock frequencies, and DDR5 support, all these are components of a noticeable acceleration that really pulls to change the platform. However, at the start, Socket AM5 looks like a rather expensive solution, which requires costs not only for the purchase of a powerful processor but also for an inexpensive motherboard, DDR5 memory, and an effective CPU cooling system. But if you really need an ultra-powerful platform for serious tasks, and the cost of its purchase is justified, then this is a good opportunity to get the best.