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Yeah, it will be expensive for sure. The 3960/70 certainly are relatively expensive considering the prior threadrippers and Intel's price drops but they do have great performance. 

On clocks, most of the 3960/70X reviews did get to an overclock roughly equivalent to a 3900/3950X, though of course the cooling requirements were... significant and will only go up more as the core count increases. If they bin the 3990X same way I'd expect it to overclock up to the 4.5- 4.7 range at least theoretically, but you'd probably need an Intel style industrial chiller to do it.

I'd have said it was a halo product mostly made because they can and because it makes Intel look bad much like the 3950x on AM4, but they always seem to find a market for more cores.

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Ryzen 4000 series laptops look really nice. 8 cores, 16 threads for the 4800 series. LPDDR4x. 6 cores and 12 threads for the 4600 series. I'm not upgrading at least until DDR5 lands but I wish I had just waited a few more months to get a new laptop...

Also Videocardz is saying the 3990X is 'only' 3950 USD!

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Turns out the 3990X is... $3990. AMD marketing having some fun.

Perhaps a bit surprised that the 4000 laptops have fewer and vega cores for their iGPU, though in terms of practical performance that should be outweighed by the improvements to frequency and memory.

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So I bought a Ryzen 3900k because I never owned one before.  I've always gone Intel.  I am now officially on team 'Yellow' (Amd, Nvidia), and will eventually pick up the 4xxx series and the 3080 ti (or whatever Nvidia's next batch will be called).

Don't make me regret giving up Intel, I'm expecting the 4xxx series Ryzens to have significantly improved clock speeds.

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I'm still very happy with my Ryzen 2700X. After tweaking my RAM timings (3600MHz, Cl15!) and overclocking it 10%, and still keeping thermals under control (admittedly using watercooling), I can't be anything but impressed. I was thinking about upgrading to a 3800X for a while, but.. there's really no need. Maybe when Gen 4 comes along..

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Yeah I sent mine back for a full refund, they just can't keep up with Intel's clock speeds and since I work for a living, I don't do anything on my PC than browse and play games so I'm kinda bullet proof to the alleged superiority of AMD Ryzen.

Get those clock speeds up and then we'll talk.

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The scuttlebutt is that Intel's Comet Lake (still 14nm) desktop cpus should arrive late May/early June. I expect higher clock speeds (the one area Intel still leads) and competitive performance with Ryzen 3xxx chips. At ultra high clock speeds they'll suck tremendous amounts of power and give off tons of heat, but they'll make very good gaming chips. 

AMD's Ryzen 4xxx chips are supposedly coming late August/September. I expect even higher core counts and bigger L3 cache. The rumor is 10-15% IPC gain over Ryzen 3xxx, which, combined with higher core counts, would make them absolute monsters. Of course, I don't take AMD's (or Intel's) own internal benchmarks as gospel, so we'll see once we get independent benchmarks. Also, these are supposedly going to be the last chips using the AM4 socket. The 5nm Ryzen 5xxx chips will supposedly use a new socket (AM5?) and even more supposedly may arrive as soon as late 2021 (I HIGHLY doubt that).

Edited by Keyrock

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The AM5, either the first or second generation I think, will probably be when I upgrade from my 4770k, which is getting a little long in the tooth these days (although my 32GB of RAM still makes it more than good enough for most everything). Looking forward to a ridiculous amount of cores and threads with great power-to-performance efficiency. Intel's current ridiculous lineup of hot and power-hungry 14nm+++s are sadly not terribly to my liking.

Edited by Bartimaeus

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Limiting factor for AM5's arrival will likely be when (practically, after) DDR5 gets to mass production. TSMC 5nm is basically functional now and Apple and a few other large manufacturers are set to migrate to it soon, which should free up additional 7nm fab space. AMD has been doing a new generation a year pretty regularly with Zen, so AM5/ [Ry]Zen5/ 5nm in 2021 would not be unheard of. I personally suspect the initial AM5 offerings will be on an advanced 7nm node though, even with the obvious marketing angle of [Ry]Zen5- DDR5- 5nm. Probably also depends a bit on whether Intel's 7nm is or isn't 10nm redux, if it has even standard teething troubles like 14nm had there will not be much pushing AMD onto a more expensive option.

The 4000 series laptops have been released recently too with great reviews and excellent power/ performance.

[have I mentioned how much I hate AMD's incoherent naming schemes recently?]

 

Edited by Zoraptor
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I believe 4000 mobile is Zen 2 while 4000 Desktop coming late fall is Zen 3.

It's possible that 5000 will not be ready for AM5 DDR5 5nm, but instead it is Zen 5 (Ryzen 6/7000) where everything comes together. I'm sure the DDR5 lobby is ready to get the ball rolling, but it will take some time, and I could see it becoming consumer ready in 2022. If it does launch in 2021 it will be late, and won't really be consumer viable until 2022 anyways.

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I have a consumer question.

So I plan to build a new PC, namely for Cyberpunk 2077. Ryzen 4000 (Zen3) seems to be launching a good month or two after the game. So should I just go with Ryzen 3000 (Zen 2)???

My take is it would be somewhat cheaper of a build. The GPU probably matters more. I'd have less guilt re-upgrading to AM5 for DDR5 when that comes out. I'd get to play some games from my backlog sooner and isolation is certainly itching at me. I believe AVX512 also failed to get into Zen 3, so less of a reason to upgrade to the new and expensive half-measure.

Also Nvidia GPUs work well with Ryzen CPUs right? I've only ever had Intel/Nvidia machines up to this point.

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7 hours ago, injurai said:

I believe 4000 mobile is Zen 2 while 4000 Desktop coming late fall is Zen 3.

Yes, the Ryzen 4000 laptop chips are 7nm Zen 2, wile the coming 4000 desktop chips are 7nm+ Zen 3. Laptops are basically 1 generation behind.

7 hours ago, injurai said:

I have a consumer question.

So I plan to build a new PC, namely for Cyberpunk 2077. Ryzen 4000 (Zen3) seems to be launching a good month or two after the game. So should I just go with Ryzen 3000 (Zen 2)???

My take is it would be somewhat cheaper of a build. The GPU probably matters more. I'd have less guilt re-upgrading to AM5 for DDR5 when that comes out. I'd get to play some games from my backlog sooner and isolation is certainly itching at me. I believe AVX512 also failed to get into Zen 3, so less of a reason to upgrade to the new and expensive half-measure.

Also Nvidia GPUs work well with Ryzen CPUs right? I've only ever had Intel/Nvidia machines up to this point.

My general stance on building a new rig is "just do it when you feel the need to do it". It's easy to get carried away waiting for the next thing, I'm guilty of that myself, but there's always going to be some exciting new tech "right around the corner", so you'll wait forever. If gaming is your primary function for the new rig, then, quite honestly, it makes little difference if you get a Ryzen 3000 or wait for a Ryzen 4000, or get an Intel chip, for that matter. Unless your CPU is of the super budget variety and becomes a bottleneck, the GPU is going to be the OVERWHELMINGLY biggest part of the performance equation. If you plan to do a lot of heavy multitasking and have highly threaded workloads that the rig will run regularly, then it might be worth waiting for the new Ryzen 4000s, but it's not like a 3000 is going to be a slouch.

To the best of my knowledge, there should be no issue running a team red/team green combo, as unholy a union as that is.

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If all you do is game and browse, any new gen core i7 is best. 

If you game and stream and edit videos, go with an i9.

If you're a mid range gamer who gets his/her jollies off of running multiple apps/games at once and is not very conscience of cpu usage, Ryzen is your bag.

It's class vs. trash.  The color Red used to be class, but 1989 changed that, so now it's synonymous with trash, so classy gamers stick with blue/green (cyan).

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How on earth do you become a fanboy of a faceless brand? Why not just do yourself a favour and purchase whatever is the best at the moment of purchase? Right now the overwhelming majority of tech experts recommend Ryzen, your fanboing won't change that.

I just recently switched from Intel to AMD myself. It's not that difficult, I promise.

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AMD to create "one way ticket" BIOS upgrade path for X470 and B450 motherboards to support AM5 Zen 3 CPUs.

As we head into our upcoming “Zen 3” architecture, there are considerable technical challenges that face a CPU socket as long-lived as AMD Socket AM4. For example, we recently announced that we would not support “Zen 3” on AMD 400 Series motherboards due to serious constraints in SPI ROM capacities in most of the AMD 400 Series motherboards. This is not the first time a technical hurdle has come up with Socket AM4 given the longevity of this socket, but it is the first time our enthusiasts have faced such a hurdle.

Over the past week, we closely reviewed your feedback on that news: we watched every video, read every comment and saw every Tweet. We hear that many of you hoped for a longer upgrade path. We hear your hope that AMD B450 and X470 chipsets would carry you into the “Zen 3” era.

Our experience has been that large-scale BIOS upgrades can be difficult and confusing especially as processors come on and off the support lists. As the community of Socket AM4 customers has grown over the past three years, our intention was to take a path forward that provides the safest upgrade experience for the largest number of users. However, we hear you loud and clear when you tell us you would like to see B450 or X470 boards extended to the next generation “Zen 3” products.

As the team weighed your feedback against the technical challenges we face, we decided to change course. As a result, we will enable an upgrade path for B450 and X470 customers that adds support for next-gen AMD Ryzen™ Processors with the “Zen 3” architecture. This decision is very fresh, but here is a first look at how the upgrade path is expected to work for customers of these motherboards.

1) We will develop and enable our motherboard partners with the code to support “Zen 3”-based processors in select beta BIOSes for AMD B450 and X470 motherboards.

2) These optional BIOS updates will disable support for many existing AMD Ryzen™ Desktop Processor models to make the necessary ROM space available.

3) The select beta BIOSes will enable a one-way upgrade path for AMD Ryzen Processors with “Zen 3,” coming later this year. Flashing back to an older BIOS version will not be supported.

4) To reduce the potential for confusion, our intent is to offer BIOS download only to verified customers of 400 Series motherboards who have purchased a new desktop processor with “Zen 3” inside. This will help us ensure that customers have a bootable processor on-hand after the BIOS flash, minimizing the risk a user could get caught in a no-boot situation.

5) Timing and availability of the BIOS updates will vary and may not immediately coincide with the availability of the first “Zen 3”-based processors.

6) This is the final pathway AMD can enable for 400 Series motherboards to add new CPU support. CPU releases beyond “Zen 3” will require a newer motherboard.

7) AMD continues to recommend that customers choose an AMD 500 Series motherboard for the best performance and features with our new CPUs.

There are still many details to iron out, but we’ve already started the necessary planning. As we get closer to the launch of this upgrade path, you should expect another blog just like this to provide the remaining details and a walkthrough of the specific process.

At CES 2017, AMD made a commitment: we would support AMD Socket AM4 until 2020. We’ve spent the next three years working very hard to fulfill that promise across four architectures, plus pioneering use of new technologies like chiplets and PCIe® Gen 4. Thanks to your feedback, we are now set to bring “Zen 3” to the AMD 400 Series chipsets. We’re grateful for your passion and support of AMD’s products and technologies.

We’ll talk again soon.

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Think MSI in particular will be breathing a sigh of relief, their 450MAX boards were sold with the explicit promise of being compatible with Zen3. Most of the other brands were a lot more weaselly about future support. AMD did themselves no favours with the extremely tardy roll out of their B550s, and with x570s being expensive.

Have to admit that as owner of an x370 board I have some sympathy with AMD's position and always expected an AM4+ type situation. Getting Zen2 support on my x370 was non trivial and involved 2 BIOS flashes and use of an external utility (plus losing support for some pointless AM4 compatible Bulldozers). That's not the sort of thing that the average user is going to want to go through, since I doubt the average user even knows what a 'BIOS' is.

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As I understand it, this whole situation is a result of less expensive boards, such as the B450s, utilizing a 16 MB ROM. There are only so many different chips that can fit onto 16 MB of memory, so to support future Zen 3 chips, support for some older chips will have to be removed to make room. Someone with an older chip could brick their system were they to install this BIOS update, hence limiting this to verified Zen 3 purchasers.

As far as I know, x470 uses a 32 MB ROM, so that limitation is not present on those more expensive boards.

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BIOS size depends on the manufacturer- so far as I am aware for example every single Gigabyte x_70 MB has a 16MB ROM (or two, if dual BIOS) including the super premium x570 model that costs 1000NZD and doesn't have a chipset fan.

They certainly all have the BIOS limitation my one has, ie they can't support 3000 series and Bristol Ridge at the same time which is due to the 16MB limit. OTOH, most of the GB ones do have a dual BIOS, which can be a godsend if for example using XMP settings for your RAM causes a boot loop...

The motherboard ecology is a bit of a mess really. IIRC ASUS also mostly has 16MB ROMs in their 400 series, and ASRock never even updated the premium x370 Taichi's BIOS for 3000 series at all. It's partly AMD's fault for being too slow with B550 and too optimistic about all AM4s being upgradeable but there's certainly a decent amount of blame to be shared with the MB manufacturers.

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I'm mostly annoyed that the older processors aren't supported in the newer MB, I can't buy a new x570 and plonk my 1800x into it and get a 4000 series later, have to but a new cpu aswell, I really don't want to buy a new mb+cpu and then within a years time a new cpu again.

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Zen 3 is supposedly the end of the line for AM4. My plan is to go fairly high-end on the CPU when I do a new build later this year, likely the Zen 3 equivalent of R9 3900X, so R9 4900X, I guess. I figure that should future proof me. The only component I might upgrade in a couple years is the GPU and I can't see any scenario in which a 4900X monster becomes a bottleneck for gaming within the next 6 or so years and (presumably) 12-cores will have me all types of covered for multitasking and any highly threaded task.

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Oops, in my previous I post, I had a brain fart in my previous post and wrote "AM5" - I *presumed* Zen 3 would have to be AM5 to necessitate this to begin with, but I guess AMD has its own set of socket issues.

I've been getting more and more annoyed with my 4770k system over the past year or so - weird and inexplicable slowdowns and response times (with 32GB of RAM!) seem to occur much more frequently than they used to. Wonder if that's been the result of the various security patches Intel's CPUs have had forcibly applied? Making me want to upgrade sooner than I had planned...

Edited by Bartimaeus

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The way I hear it, DDR5 is what's going to determine when AMD moves to a new socket, presumably AM5. It's entirely possible that if things get delayed then Ryzen 5xxx will still be AM4 Zen 3 7nm+(+). 

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6 hours ago, Azdeus said:

I'm mostly annoyed that the older processors aren't supported in the newer MB, I can't buy a new x570 and plonk my 1800x into it and get a 4000 series later, have to but a new cpu aswell, I really don't want to buy a new mb+cpu and then within a years time a new cpu again.

Same boat with me. Though I do have to say it's a sign of how good things have been on the AMD side when we are complaining about being limited to 2x cores, 1.5 node improvements, +20% IPC and +20% clocks across a single motherboard. Shame it won't be ~35% IPC improvement, but then the alternative has gone through 3 new motherboards, +400Mhz, -IPC, 2.5x cores, ++++ node and a hundred odd extra watts heat over the same period. Could definitely be worse.

The problem is now that 4000 series will (probably, gods of DDR5 permitting) be on an otherwise dead socket. Has to happen at some time, but it will put off some buyers; and the alternative may be extortionate RAM prices as phones grab all the new ddr5 and shaky gen1 memory controllers like the one I have that tries to brick my MB if I use XMP. You'd also have to expect that 3000 series procs will hold their value well too given that they'll be a terminal upgrade for a lot of people.

5 hours ago, Bartimaeus said:

Wonder if that's been the result of the various security patches Intel's CPUs have had forcibly applied? Making me want to upgrade sooner than I had planned...

Most of the security updates are done via windows updates iirc, so they can be turned off if you want to check if they are the issue.

Edited by Zoraptor
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If the DDR4 to DDR5 changeover will be anything like DDR2 to DDR3 and DDR3 to DDR4, then initially there will be nearly zero performance upgrade. It's usually about 2 years after the initial switch that the new memory standard starts pulling ahead.

Edited by Keyrock

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