That something is the Ryzen 7 3800X. AMD cranks the TDP dial-up to 105W on this 8-core 16-thread monster, making it an upgrade to the 65W Ryzen 7 3700X, basically the same 7nm chip built with the Zen 2 microarchitecture, but with a lower TDP rating. That chip came away from our first look at the Ryzen 3000 series with an Editor’s Choice award, going toe-to-toe with Intel’s Core i7-9700K, so it’s fair to say we have high hopes for the higher-performance model.
The Ryzen 7 3800X sits just beneath the Ryzen 9 3900X, which comes with two 7nm compute die tied together with a 12nm I/O fails to yield a 12-core 24-thread part. AMD has done a brilliant job of minimizing the impact of this sort of multi-chip arrangement. Still, it’s fair to assume that the Ryzen 7 3800X’s single-compute-die design, paired with a higher TDP rating that facilitates more aggressive boost clocks, could rival the 3900X in some applications – including high-performance apps and games.
The Ryzen 7 3800X takes the necessary components of the Zen 2 microarchitecture, which boasts a mean of 15% more instructions per cycle (IPC) throughput, and 7nm process and stamps them onto 0a high-performance chip that is impressive across our test suite, especially when we factor in the competitive pricing, PCIe 4.0 interface, backward compatibility with most AM4 socket motherboards, unlocked overclocking features, and bundled cooler.
The Ryzen 7 3700X offers similar performance to the 3800X, however, for $70 less. The Ryzen 7 3800X is an impressive chip and provides a better mixture of performance than Intel’s Core i7-9700K, no doubt, but in this case, value seekers might opt for its less expensive family member.
Ryzen 7 3800x vs. Core i7-9700k:
The -9700K gives a 95W TDP rating, whereas the 3800X boasts a 105W rating. Keeping in mind that these ratings only measure the amount of heat the chip dissipates under load, and both companies use different test methodologies. Intel specs TDP at the base frequency, thus ignoring peak heat output during boost activity, while AMD measures with all cores fully loaded. The only way to make real power comparisons is via power measurement.
Being the more expensive version of the Ryzen 7 3700X, the 3800X has a higher base and Precision Boost frequencies of 3.9 and 4.5 GHz, respectively. That’s a 300 MHz boost in base frequency and a 100 MHz jump to boost clocks. However, the real advantage should come in the form of higher Package Power Tracking (PPT) envelope, which is a measurement of the maximum amount of power delivered to the socket.
Like the other Ryzen 7 and 9 chips, the 3800X comes with the capable Wraith Prism RGB cooler, rated to dissipate up to 124W if you crank the fans up to high. Given the 3800X’s maximum 142W PPT measurement, that means, at least on paper, that the Wraith Prism might come up a tad shy of dissipating the full heat output of the 3800X at stock settings.
Which Motherboard to Choose for the Ryzen 7 3800X?
You can marry the Ryzen 3000 chips to the new X570 chipset to unleash the increased throughput of PCIe 4.0, a feature that Intel doesn’t offer, or you can drop the processor into most previous-gen motherboards as a value alternative, but you’ll lose PCIe 4.0 support.
A fresh idea, the Ryzen 7 3800X offers a great combination of single- and multi-threaded performance than Intel’s competing chips and support for the PCIe 4.0 interface unlocks the potential of ultimate storage throughput. The impressive power efficiency and performance present a potent upgrade, but value-seekers who aren’t afraid of minimal tuning should look to the less-expensive Ryzen 7 3700X for similar performance.