AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D Evaluate: AMD Retakes the Gaming Throne

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In the present day, AMD is launching its Ryzen 7 5800X3D eight-core CPU at $449. The brand new chip is each an easy enchancment over the 5800X and a much bigger deal than it may appear. The “3D” within the mannequin title refers back to the extra 64MB of vertically-mounted L3 cache (V-Cache) that AMD has hooked up on prime of the CPU die. The brand new chip options 96MB of L3 cache in complete and a barely decrease clock pace in comparison with the Ryzen 7 5800X. General, AMD is claiming a 15 p.c enchancment in gaming.

That is the primary time any high-end semiconductor producer has launched a chip with this type of configuration. AMD is utilizing TSMC’s CoWoS (Chip on Wafer on Substrate) expertise to construct the 5800X3D, however dropping a big L3 cache on prime of the CPU creates some important cooling challenges. AMD prevented trapping extra warmth on the CPU die by retaining the brand new L3 effectively away from typical hotspots.

Placing the 5800X3D In Context:

Slapping a bigger cache on a CPU is a tried-and-true methodology of boosting its efficiency. Twenty years in the past, a big L3 cache was a serious distinguishing issue between Intel’s consumer-oriented “Northwood” P4 CPUs and its “Gallatin” Xeon server platform. Intel would later recycle the Gallatin core because the Pentium 4 “Excessive Version” to problem AMD’s then-new Athlon 64.

It makes specific sense for AMD to discover this idea given Zen’s long-term growth trajectory. A number of the most vital modifications AMD has made to its flagship CPU structure over the previous 5 years have addressed shortcomings in its L3 cache design. Its RDNA2 GPUs distinguished themselves from their RDNA predecessors because of the addition of ray tracing and a large L3. Clearly AMD has had huge caches on the mind for fairly a while.

There are a number of components that make the 5800X3D an attention-grabbing chip to look at. First, it could be a partial preview of AMD’s future expertise roadmap. We count on to see V-Cache deployed extra broadly with Zen 4 if the 5800X3D is profitable, so measuring V-Cache efficiency now offers us a window into how AMD chips could reply to bigger cache loadouts sooner or later.

Second, the 5800X3D is the primary high-end CPU from any producer that integrates a vertical cache. This type of integration was traditionally unimaginable because of the issue of routing so many connections by way of the highest of a CPU die and the thermal issues related to sticking an extra heat-generating die on prime of chips we battle to chill already. Prior to now, top-mounted reminiscence was restricted to very low-power gadgets, and even then the hooked up RAM was wired to the CPU package deal externally, not linked instantly by way of through-silicon vias.

Whereas vertical die placement is restricted by the necessity to keep away from aggravating current scorching spots, there are actual long-term benefits to this type of manufacturing. The liberty to mount silicon vertically gives chip designers a wholly new dimension to play with in the case of optimum hint routing. In some instances, it could be attainable for corporations to cut back latency throughout a chip by strategically mounting some circuits above others.

The power to mount cache vertically might pay specific dividends in chiplet-based designs. If AMD needed to construct a CPU with a 96MB L3 cache in a traditional planar structure, every of its chiplets could be a lot bigger than right now. That wouldn’t essentially be an issue for single or dual-chiplet designs, however AMD packs as much as eight chiplets per package deal on a Threadripper or Epyc CPU. Smaller chiplets means extra chiplets per package deal and extra cores per bodily CPU.

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Third, AMD’s choice to slap one other 64MB of L3 on the 5800X offers us a wonderful window into how bandwidth-limited an eight-core Ryzen really is – with the caveat that the 5800X3D shouldn’t be the chip we’d want to check for this type of measurement. The 5800X3D gives one reminiscence channel for each 4 CPU cores. Chips just like the 5950X and Threadripper 3990X solely provide one reminiscence channel per eight CPU cores. We’d want to measure the impression of extra cache on a better core-count chip, however we should see some attention-grabbing outcomes from the 5800X3D.

Positioning the 5800X3D

Formally, the 5800X3D is a gaming CPU. AMD’s whole advertising and marketing push for the chip focuses on that market completely. The corporate went as far as to jot down in its Reviewing Information: “We wish to be clear, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D is a gaming processor, there isn’t a uplift in content material creation efficiency.”

This assertion is stronger than it ought to have been. There are content material creation workloads that profit from the Ryzen 7 5800X3D’s extra V-Cache, however AMD isn’t focusing on these markets with this chip.

When AMD first unveiled its V-Cache expertise it demoed the L3 on CPUs with greater than eight cores. AMD quietly shifted its plans sooner or later between its preliminary unveil and right now’s launch, and we are able to hazard a number of guesses as to why.

The extra 64MB of L3 cache constructed into the 5800X3D isn’t low-cost, even when AMD can obtain equal yield between the 5800X3D and non-3D CPUs. AMD’s choice to not launch the Ryzen 9 5900X3D and 5950X3D means that the corporate doesn’t assume it wants the elements in-market to compete towards Intel within the 6-8 months earlier than Zen 4 launches.

Right here’s our take: AMD designed Zen 3 to be V-Cache appropriate from the start, as a result of it all the time knew it might introduce the expertise sooner or later and it needed the choice to deploy giant L3 caches on AM4 if Zen 4 / AM5 was delayed or if Intel proved to be extra severe competitors than anticipated. Regardless of the circumstances have been for activating that contingency, they didn’t come to cross – however AMD nonetheless needs to launch a swan music for AM4.

AMD is focusing on the eight-core market as a result of eight-core chips are the present candy spot for players between excessive core depend and excessive frequency, and since it solely has to bin one good L3 chiplet per bodily CPU as a substitute of two. The corporate’s choice to go ahead with a comparatively restricted launch may very well be learn as an announcement on AMD’s total yield or it might mirror the realities of the pandemic’s strained provide chains.

Launching a single chip just like the 5800X3D lets AMD place the CPU as a goodbye current for players and client lovers. Dropping a full launch stack out the door right now and following with Zen 4 in simply six months might result in upset prospects who purchased into AM4 not realizing it was a dead-end platform.

In comparison with the 5800X, the 5800X3D trades a modest quantity of clock for a whopping chonk of cache. The truth that AMD has gone as far as to disable overclocking means that the corporate has tuned the 5800X3D’s base clocks very fastidiously and that trying to exceed them might harm or destabilize the chip briefly order.

The final cause AMD is focusing this chip on the gaming market, particularly, is as a result of it values having the ability to declare prime bragging rights in gaming simply as a lot as Chipzilla does. Lots of boutique methods get offered on the premise of who’s main in a naked handful of gaming checks.

Is the 5800X3D “Simply” a Gaming Chip?

Our evaluate analysis might be based mostly totally on the 5800X3D’s efficiency in video games, however we count on the L3 cache to enhance utility efficiency, too. The query of the place – and the way a lot – is one matter we’ll regulate on this evaluate, each in video games and in functions.

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Totally different CPU architectures reply to cache boosts in several methods. The Pentium 4 Willamette and Northwood architectures have been very delicate to L2 cache dimension, whereas AMD CPUs of the identical period have been much less so. To be clear – “much less delicate” doesn’t imply that including L2 or L3 cache didn’t enhance efficiency. It signifies that totally different CPU architectures reply in a different way to a cache improve, and the diploma of enchancment usually depends upon whether or not a chip was cache-starved to start with.

Checks like Cinebench are unlikely to reply to a bigger L3 as a result of they don’t stress cache. Different checks / functions may see a major efficiency enchancment if the extra L3 permits crucial knowledge to be saved nearer to the CPU.

How We Take a look at

There are two colleges of thought in the case of CPU-centric testing in video games. If you wish to get the GPU out of the best way and study how briskly the CPU can transfer knowledge out and in of the core, benchmarking the sport on the lowest attainable settings is a good suggestion. Whereas that is academically attention-grabbing, it’s not how most individuals really play.

We’ve targeted our testing on 1080p, 1440p, and 4K, although I did run Borderlands 3 at 720p / Very Low element to get a way for a way a lot the 5800X3D’s L3 might increase efficiency in that situation. Many video games we examined confirmed a bigger delta between the 5800X and 5800X3D at 1080p with the hole shrinking or disappearing altogether at 4K, whereas the 5800X3D led in different titles in any respect three resolutions.

Borderlands 3: Examined in Badass Mode.
Hitman 3: Dartmoor: Examined in Extremely element mode, with Movement Blur off.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider: Examined in “Excessive” graphics mode with SMAAT2x enabled.
Far Cry 6: Examined in Extremely element with HD textures enabled.
Horizon Zero Daybreak: Examined in Extremely element.
Warhammer III: Examined in Extremely element with display house reflections enabled.
Murderer’s Creed: Valhalla: Examined in Extremely Element mode.

Let’s do the Borderlands 720p numbers first. The Ryzen 7 5800X and Intel Core i9 12900K scored 257.51 and 260 fps in 720p / Very Low element settings, whereas the Ryzen 7 5800X3D leaped forward at 317 fps. The dimensions of that hole doesn’t maintain at 1080p but it surely’s an attention-grabbing instance of how low-resolution gaming can significantly profit from giant L3 caches.

Gaming Efficiency

The Ryzen 7 5800X3D is quicker than each the Ryzen 7 5800X and the Core i9-12900K, significantly at 1080p. The dimensions of the uplift ranges from modest to substantial. At 1080p, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D wins or ties each recreation aside from Warhammer III. As anticipated, the positive factors usually are not evenly distributed. Some titles acquire quite a lot of efficiency whereas others don’t budge.

Our checks present a ten p.c uplift for the Ryzen 7 5800X3D over the Ryzen 7 5800X at 1080p. Since positive factors are game-dependent, selecting a unique collection of video games would permit a reviewer to hit AMD’s 15 p.c declare. The 5800X3D’s lead over the Core i9-12900K is smaller, however AMD nonetheless clinches a 2.5 p.c total efficiency uplift. That’s a tie for all intents and functions, but it surely’s additionally sufficient of a lead for AMD to assert the title of “Quickest Gaming CPU” in its advertising and marketing copy.

The positive factors shrink as one strikes by way of 1440p and 4K and workloads grow to be extra GPU-bound. The 5800X3D continues to supply a 1-3 fps benefit at 4K relying on the title.

Non Gaming Efficiency

We promised to judge the 5800X3D totally on its gaming efficiency, however we wish to contemplate the non-gaming angle too, if solely unofficially. These outcomes illustrate a part of why AMD doesn’t wish to market the Ryzen 7 5800X3D as something however a gaming chip — however in addition they present extra enchancment than AMD implies.

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Efficiency in Blender 3.1.2 and Cinebench R23 favors greater clocks over extra cores and the 5800X wins these comparisons towards the 5800X3D. The 5800X3D beats its higher-clocked sibling in our H.264 encoding checks and in one of many H.265 checks, however loses the final.

The H.264 and H.265 checks we run are primarily reminiscence bandwidth checks, with some impression from clock and core depend. The 2 requirements don’t reply identically to the 5800X3D, nonetheless. H.264 encoding advantages from the extra cache, whereas H.265 principally doesn’t. The AMD CPUs have been examined with Prefetch(12) in H.264 and Prefetch(8) in H.265. This proved to be probably the most advantageous configuration for them. The Intel Core i9-12900K used Prefetch(12) for each H.264 and H.265.

The extra L3 cache offers the 5800X3D a 1.14x efficiency increase in H.264 Extremely Quick and a 1.13x increase in H.264 QTGMC Medium. In 7zip, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D is 1.11x quicker in compression however barely slower in decompression in comparison with the Ryzen 7 5800X.

The Core i9-12900K is way more costly than the Ryzen CPUs. Not like in gaming, the place the 5800X3D and Core i9-12900K are sometimes on prime of one another, the Alder Lake CPU leads or ties all of those checks. That is to be anticipated given the worth distinction between the 2 chips.

If the Ryzen 7 5800X3D highlights among the strengths of including extra cache, it additionally highlights among the weaknesses. The 5800X3D runs at simply 89 p.c of the 5800X’s base frequency and 96 p.c of its increase frequency, and the additional L3 doesn’t all the time compensate for the diminished clock. General, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D gives between 95 – 115 p.c the efficiency of the Ryzen 7 5800X. An equally clocked model of the CPU could be between 0 – 25 p.c quicker than the vanilla 5800X, with most functions selecting up at the least a small enchancment.


The 5800X3D is an attention-grabbing CPU. It gives the extra oomph that AMD promised in each video games and in addition in some functions, although there’s no strategy to predict which video games and apps will profit till you check them. It additionally offers AMD an actual argument that it gives the quickest gaming CPU, with the caveat that we have now not been supplied the chance to check the Core i9-12900KS.

If you’re trying to maximize your gaming worth per greenback, nonetheless, you’ll wish to contemplate different chips. The Core i9-12900K is overkill for gaming in comparison with both AMD choice. Clearly there are additionally cheaper Alder Lake CPUs. If gaming is your precept workload and also you wish to run an Intel system, we advocate one thing within the Core i5 or Core i7 households.

Equally, AMD customers who do greater than recreation could discover chips just like the Ryzen 9 5900X to be a greater worth than the Ryzen 7 5800X3D. The 12-core 5900X is promoting for as little as $394 on-line, effectively under this chip’s $450 MSRP.

The efficiency distinction between the 5800X and the 5800X3D shouldn’t be giant sufficient to justify the worth hole between the 2, even by boutique pricing requirements. This launch is about AMD slugging it out with Intel on the very prime of the market the place cash is not any object. Players who need absolutely the quickest gaming CPU AMD producers could wish to severely contemplate the Ryzen 7 5800X3D. Players who need the wonderful worth/efficiency ratio AMD is understood for might be happiest in the event that they contemplate different chips.

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