Model: Ryzen Threadripper 3970X & Ryzen Threadripper 3960X
Ryzen Threadripper 3970X RRP: £1899.99(Inc. VAT)
Ryzen Threadripper 3960X RRP: £1349.99(Inc. VAT)
Read the Bit-Tech review on the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3970X & 3960X…
There are some very good reasons to be excited by the HEDT market this month. Intel has slashed prices with its new Cascade Lake-X CPUs with the Core i9-10980XE offering decent performance for the cash and plenty of overclocking headroom. AMD has also released the Ryzen 9 3950X – a stunning 16-core CPU that brings HEDT-level performance to the mainstream. It’s time to put all that to one side, though, as we gear up for the third instalment of Threadripper – that sneaky, unexpected HEDT CPU that forced Intel to massively boost its HEDT core counts and now comes wielding 24 and 32 cores along with the 7nm Zen 2 architecture, which we know is a bit of a good performer. The question is, are we really looking at a Ryzen 9 3950X but with more cache and more cores, or are we going to be slightly disappointed, as we were with the WX-series last year?
In most cases we’re genuinely astounded by the gains AMD has made over the WX-series Zen+-based Threadrippers. Performance across the board is in a different league and we’d argue that this is a bigger, more impressive leap than mainstream Ryzen moving from Zen+ to Zen 2. You only have to look at benchmarks such as Adobe Premiere Pro to see just how much better these CPUs are. In fact they almost make the old ones look broken.
AMD has been keen to pitch 3rd Gen Threadripper as a CPU you can use for all tasks too – not just dumping those multi-threaded workloads onto it. We’d have to agree in all but extreme situations such as getting the absolute best frame rates. Here, the Core i9-10980XE does still hold an advantage, but only once overclocked. The important thing to take away is that there’s next to no need to have a second system for gaming or lightly-threaded tasks. Such are the improvements, 3rd Gen Threadripper is a great all-rounder as well as a multi-threaded powerhouse.
As we eluded to at the start, though, the Core i9-10980XE isn’t really a competitor. It has its own niche in its own price bracket that sits well below 3rd Gen Threadripper and the TRX40 platform. If you need the best performance, though, and you’ll be saving money by shaving those export or rendering times, then there’s currently nothing else out there in the desktop PC market that offers the same grunt. The 64-core CPU will likely be extend the lead in those select workstation-focussed tasks, but we’re honestly wondering what on earth 2020 will bring and what Intel can do to counter it.
As for recommending either the Threadripper 3970X or 3960X, overall, the latter offers better value. In games and lightly-threaded tasks they perform similarly and it’s only in a select few tests that the 32-core SKU reaches its full potential. Everywhere else the Threadripper 3960X is never far behind, so the more value-conscious out there will likely want to put that extra $600 towards a bigger storage array, more powerful graphics card or water-cooling system.
Read the review here…
To buy AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3970X-
To buy AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3960X-