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AMD Ryzen 7 1800X Review: The Red Wedding

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It’s hard to deny how much hype the Ryzen has generated, with many hoping that it would shake up the market, and unseat Intel from its perch of pride. So has it met our expectations? And is it worthy of the hype?

The Ryzen 7 1800X is a octa-core, 16-thread, 14nm behemoth of a processor. Each core sports 64KB of LI cache, followed by 512KB of L2 cache, and 8MB of L3 cache shared between each set of four cores, giving each R7 series chip a combined total of 16MB of L3. Instead of allocating 2MB to each core, the cache is shared across each set of four.

So what’s the difference between all the 7-series chips? It mostly comes down to two things: clock speeds and TDR At the very bottom of the ladder is the Ryzen 7 1700, with a clock speed of 3GHz at stock, boosting to 3.7GHz, and a 65W TDP. If overclocking isn’t your jam, this is perfect. Next is the 1700X, with a 3.4/3.8GHz clock speed, and a 95 W TDP,

so if you’re after a content creator on a budget, this one is ideal. Lastly, the 1800X, still touting that 95W TDP, but with a base clock of 3.6GHz, turboing up to 4.0GHz when the situation demands. If you want the absolute maximum, you’ll go for this little beauty.

On top of the TDP and clock speed variance, the X-series processors come with AMD’s latest SenseMi software suite, including one neat little inclusion in the form of extended frequency range (XFR). Think of it as GPU boost for processors. Thanks to Ryzen incorporating over 1,000 different sensors into each chip, it can detect how much voltage is being directed to each area, and how well the chip is being cooled, then overclocks individual cores as necessary, boosting frequencies by 50-100MHz. Although not hugely impressive considering how little overclocking potential the R7 series has, it bodes well for AMD’s future chip design.

Now the bit you’ve been waiting for: performance. For the price, it’s incredible. It absolutely smashed what we expected, scoring 1,612 in Cinebench R15, with single-core performance at an impressive 160 points — only 20 behind Intel’s top-end Skylake chips. Power wattage was low for an eight-core part, though not quite as low as Intel’s mainstream consumer chips — but those are still only quad-core parts. Gaming was impressive, too. Across all our 1440p tests, we only saw frame rates differ by l-2fps at most from the Intel counterparts.

That said, this chip is unusual. Its aggressive price point, insane core count and stunning performance only account for one part of its disruptive nature. Overclocking is a mixed bag, with most 1800Xs only capable of maxing between 4.0 and 4.1GHz on all eight cores. But the real kicker is how the 1800X handles temperatures. With a 280mm AIO locked into place, we recorded idle temps at 50-60°C, which is ridiculously hot. We conferred with colleagues and other industry journalists, but they were seeing the same. However, weirdly, under 100% load across all eight cores, the 1800X topped out at 73°C, and then just held it there.

When all’s said and done, the Ryzen 71800X is phenomenal. For the money, its performance dwarfs the competition, and shines a light on the profit margins Intel has been leveraging over the last few years. Disruptive? Definitely.

Is AMD on top again?

Time will tell.

■ Zak Storey

Verdict

Stunning multi-core performance, solid single-core support, advanced feature set and good TDP, but at an insane price.

9 Total Score
AMD Ryzen 7 1800X Review

Stunning multi-core performance, solid single-core support, advanced feature set and good TDP, but at an insane price.

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Last update was on: 2017-11-17 5:21 am

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