Over the last few weeks, we have learned all about AMD’s next offering of CPUs and GPUs. I have been trying to stop myself from buying a new build for the last couple of months, as I waited to get a clearer picture of what the PC component landscape would look like over the coming year. When I built my current PC, I opted for the 3970x, and it has been a workhorse, but some years down the line, it is time for a change. The primary consideration for me is that the motherboard locks me into certain options, and I would be picking either Intel or AMD for the next few years of gaming. My normal tactic when building a new PC is to go big or go home. If it takes a little longer to get your hands on the parts, then do that.
We were already aware of the new Ryzen CPUs that AMD announced at Computex recently, but last night I was introduced to what will probably be my next CPU. AMD’s 16 core Ryzen 9 3950X. That is 16 cores, 32 threads, with a base clock of 3.5Ghz and a boost clock of 4.7Ghz. It comes with 8MB of L2 cache, 64MB of L3 cache, and has a TDP of 105W. At a recommended retail price of $749 it will be the only investment I need to make in a CPU for years, and it will handle gaming, music production, video production and the messing around I like to do in 3D graphics programs without breaking a sweat.
If you don’t quite want to drop that much money, you can opt for the Ryzen 9 3900X instead. 12 cores, 24 threads, a 3.8Ghz base clock with a 4.6Ghz boost, 6MB of L2 cache, 64MB of L3 cache and a TDP of 105W for $499. Alternatively, save yourself a hundred bucks and go for the 3800X. What I am hinting at here is there is something in the new Ryzen line that will suit your budget and your needs.
I’m not going to focus too much on the performance side of things here. All we have to go on right now are approved numbers from AMD, and I prefer to wait until the CPUs get out into the world and people have a chance to test, build, and benchmark with them. At the moment, I can see no real reason why I wouldn’t opt for one of the new Ryzen lineups.
Last night, we also got our first look at the new GPUs from AMD. The RX 5700 XT is positioned to take on Nvidia’s GTX 2070, while the RX 5700 is here to spar with the RTX 2060. I have a GTX 2070, and I won’t be changing it out for the new offering from Nvidia. This is not to say that the RX 5700 XT will not be worth it, it simply won’t be worth it to me because I am already up in that general area for GPU power.
The RX 5700 XT will cost $449, and is based on AMD’s new RDNA architecture, and is fabricated on TSMC’s 7nm process tech. Once again, I am not going to fret about numbers here. People who make things tend to show them off in the best light, I will be waiting for that real-world testing that will be done when the components releases in July. On that stats side, the 5700 XT packs in 40 compute units, 2560 stream processors, can reach up to 9.75 teraflops, has 8GB of GDDR6 memory, has a boost clock up to 1905Mhz, and a base clock of 1605 Mhz. It’s a solid card, precisely what you would expect to see from something being positioned to make a dent in Nvidia’s high-end GPU market share. While it is a little, or a lot, more expensive that some people expected, I think those people were dreaming a little when you consider the simple component costs of a beefy GPU like this. It is important to note that there are also assumptions we need to make about improved performance per core due to the architecture, and once again we need to wait for real-world testing to see if this all holds up.
The Radeon RX 5700 has 36 compute units, 2304 stream processors, hits up to 7.95 teraflops (at boost clock), still packs 8GB of GDDR6 memory. It has a boost clock of 1725Mhz, and a base clock of 1465Mhz. Interestingly, the memory clock of the 8GB GDDR6 is the same across both cards, at 14GT/s. It also has a lower TDP, coming in at 175W vs. the 5700 XT’s 225W. This one sells for $379. This positions it well to take on the GTX 2060, although you will find the 2060 available for lower prices than that due to the sheer variety of manufacturers out there doing different cards at different performance levels.
For now, there is so much more real-world information that we need to know about these cards. Graphs from either AMD or Nvidia are fine, but it is also easy enough to show the information that suits your product, rather than the information that shows the truth. That said, a new AMD CPU and GPU combo build is shaping up to be an attractive offer to people looking to put a new PC together. Both the new CPUs and GPU will be launching on July 7, except for that new 16 core monster of a GPU, which will arrive in September.