Test: AMD Ryzen 9 3950X in the test

Ryzen 9 3950 X in the test: 16 Cores with a lot of performance

Conclusion from 22. 01. 2020

AMD delivers a new hit and thus extends its lead. On the performance side, there is for the AMD Ryzen 9 3950 X in the test currently no worthy opponent: The 16 – Kerner is clearly pulling away from its market competitors, regardless of whether they are cheaper, the same or even more expensive. It is only surprising that the CPU even comes out for the “mainstream” socket AM4. Because not only the performance is extreme for a private PC, but also that 800 – euro price tag

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Extremely performant
Inexpensive for performance
Compatible with old mainboards
No fan included
No integrated graphics unit

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The values ​​in the article refer to the test time of the product ( 22. 01. 2020 ).

The The ratings below show how it compares to the other products in the leaderboard.

test scores (im Comparison to all tested products in this category)

AMD Ryzen 9 3950 X in the test: mainstream or enthusiast?

AMD is giving us a lot of headaches right now. Because: The Ryzen 9 3950) X is too good – at least for his Base. The highly potent 16 – Core CPU with 32 threads is so strong that it actually i9 – 9900 K from the competitor Intel in our best list refers to the grade “good”. An almost 800 – Euro-CPU actually belongs in enthusiast segment. However, we currently separate these leaderboards by mainboard type, in the case of AMD so AM4 (mainstream) and TR4 (enthusiasts). This is mainly due to the special features of the high-end boards, such as quad-channel support for RAM and extra PCIe lanes. In this respect, the 3950 X without these features not quite there. One 800 – euro-CPU is just as unsuitable in the mainstream sector.

We will leave the rankings for now the way they are. In the test, however, we will now compare the CPU with enthusiastic performance rather than hacking at a competitor's CPU that is half as expensive. Before we go into the test results, we explain in a few lines what has changed with the current AMD generation.

Old socket, new CPU: In the AM4, three generations of Ryzen have throne. Picture: Jan Fischer / CHIP

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Make two out of two

With Zen 2 alias “Matisse”, AMD says goodbye to the old Zeppelin die structure on the chip and splits the tasks in several parts: on the silicon of the R9 3950 X three components , Two of these are so-called chiplets. This is where the Ryzen cores live – a maximum of eight per chiplet, divided into clusters of four. The CPU-near cache is also located in the chips. Both chips communicate with the IO-Die via the “Infinity Fabric” data bus (“IO” stands for “in / out”). This in turn takes care of data transfer to the rest of the PC, memory management and also mediates information between the chips.

The chips are also the epitome of AMD's current pride in the number 7 – why the first Ryzen – 3000 – desktop Processors also on July 7th have appeared. The cores are made with a structure width of 7 nanometers. The Ryzen – 2000 – series became still with 12 Nanometers produced. The downsizing allows a CPU manufacturer to either shrink a die to make it more efficient, or to put more processing units on the same area.

Changes for the user the new structure initially nothing. In fact, Matisse hardly brings anything new from the purely functional scope – if you disregard the fact that the AMD CPUs were the first to introduce PCI Express 4.0 in consumer platforms. The performance advantages of the wider data bus (512 instead of 256 Bit) are currently manageable for normal users – for example, it is not to be expected that graphics cards will even begin to exhaust the gigantic bandwidth in the near future. But there is basically nothing wrong with room for improvement. And PCIe 4.0 SSDs can be faster than their older counterparts.

Incidentally, the CPU still fits in the AM4 socket and can be overclocked with most motherboard chipsets. So if you are still satisfied with your first-generation Ryzen board and the manufacturer offers updates, you can continue to use your old board.

At the Ryzen – 3000 he series sit up to two chips with a maximum of 16 cores over the IO circuit. Picture: AMD

Achievement from another star

To return to the input problem: So let's assume that the R9 3950 X against the Enthusiast CPUs would have to claim. Where would the processor end up? The answer is astonishing: in most benchmarks he would both our test winner AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2990 WX with 32 cores for 1. 750 Euro as well as Intel competitors like the Intel Core i9 – 9980 XE with 18 cores for 1. 050 Euro behind.

Both in the everyday benchmark as well as with video coding and trans and Decryption, the “mainstream” processor is clearly ahead. Even in gaming benchmarks in combination with an Nvidia Geforce GTX 1080 depends on the R9 3950 X all competitors both from the enthusiast as well as the mainstream division. All relevant results can be found in the table following this chapter.

The Ryzen 9 3950 X clocks from 3.5 GHz to up to 4.7 GHz (Intel's eight-core Core i9 – 9900 K creates 3.6 to 5.0 GHz) with a TDP of 105 Watts and gigantic cache and memory reserves: 1 MByte L1 cache, 8 MByte L2 cache and 64 MByte L3 cache. In addition, the processor can be freely overclocked with a corresponding mainboard. A cooler is not included, AMD itself recommends water cooling.

The box is deceptive: no fan is included in the scope of delivery. Picture: Jan Fischer / CHIP

AMD Ryzen 9 3950 X in comparison (complete table in desktop View)

AMD Ryzen 9 3950 X AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2990 WX Intel Core i9 – 9900 K

PCMark 8 Creative

. 4 184 Points

. 4 023 Points

. 4 152 Points

PCMark 10 Extended

. 4 258 Points

. 3 842 Points

. 3 783 Points

Excel 2016, Monte Carlo simulation

0, 421 s

1,779 s

0, 41 s

Cinebench R 15 (Multicore)

. 3 956 Points

. 4 950 Points

. 2 033 Points

Cinebench R 20 (Multicore)

. 9 178 Points

not tested

. 4 912 Points

Cinebench R 20 (Singlecore)

528 Points

not tested

511 Points

WinRAR compression

28. 716 KB / s

10. 797 KB / s

25. 476 KB / s


223, 3 fps

132, 2 fps

157, 51 fps

x 264

173, 46 fps

111, 13 fps

120, 31 fps

x 265

16, 3 fps

13, 9 fps

10, 1 fps


. 7 838 Pixel / s

. 9 717 Pixel / s

. 4 273 Pixel / s

TrueCrypt (AES-Twofish-Serpent)

1.200 MB / s

1.0 21 MB / s

697 MB / s

3DMark Fire Strike

21 . 286 Points

18. 140 Points

19. 899 Points

3DMark Time Spy

8th.174 Points

. 7 665 Points

. 7 681 Points

The “cheap” alternative

If you are interested in a good CPU for intensive work and gaming, there are some cheaper alternatives. Both the AMD Ryzen 9 3900 X (12 cores at up to 4.6 GHz) as well as the Intel Core i9 – 9900 K (8 Cores at up to 5.0 GHz currently cost 500 Euro. However, we put the AMD Ryzen 7 3700 X to most users who have a powerful PC system want to build. For 325 Euro you get an efficient CPU and a lot of performance without having to make great cuts in any area.

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