There’s been some question about what AMD’s Ryzen 3000 refresh would look like in 2020, given that Zen 3 is intended to launch before the end of the year. The company has given us our answer in the form of the new Ryzen 3000XT CPU family.
There are three new CPUs to talk about: the 3600XT, 3800XT, and 3900XT. Each of these is a clock-tweaked version of the CPU AMD launched last year.
AMD writes that “3000XT series desktop processors are optimized with higher boost frequencies to deliver elite-level performance that dominates gaming and content creation,” but it doesn’t answer the question of just what kind of boost frequencies we can expect. AMD’s Ryzen CPUs don’t tend to maintain clocks as high as their Intel counterparts do, so it’s not clear how much additional performance +200MHz turbo will deliver.
As for pricing, well, it depends on whether you want to consult AMD’s official price lists or the practical cost of CPUs today. On paper, the 3900X is still a $500 CPU, the 3800X is still $400, and the 3600X is still $300 — so these three new chips officially slot in at exactly the same price.
In reality, the 3900X is selling for $419, the 3800X is selling for $328, and the 3600X is selling for $219. The new XT-class CPUs are 1.2x, 1.2x, and 1.36x more expensive than the X-class CPUs they supersede. These CPUs may face an uphill battle to gain traction in the market, but we’ll wait and see what they cost at launch and how they perform before rendering any verdict.
Only the 3600XT will include a cooler (AMD’s Wraith Spire). The 3800XT and 3900XT will ship without one. AMD recommends a minimum 280mm radiator for best performance, which seems a bit overkill given that these CPUs still have a 105W TDP officially — but if you’re trying to squeeze every last percentage of performance out of a chip, a little overkill is typically in order.
Two other bits of AMD news. First, B550 motherboards are now available if you’ve been eyeing one, and second, AMD will also launch StoreMi 2.0 with a revamped UI and a new, AMD in-house design. The previous version of StoreMi, which launched in 2017, was built in partnership with Enmotus and could interface with Optane drives, theoretically allowing enthusiasts to deploy Intel Optane on AMD hardware.
Ultimately, we aren’t surprised to see a relatively small update for the Ryzen 3000 family this summer. With Zen 3 still coming later this year, this has the feel of a snack rather than the main entree. Data suggests that AMD continues to perform well, with strong uptake in desktop, laptop, and server markets. The Ryzen 3000 family has done an excellent job holding value against the Intel 9th Generation and 10th Generation Core families to-date.
- AMD Updates Roadmaps for Zen 3, 5nm, and RDNA2, the GPU Powering Xbox Series X, PS5
- A Competitive Apple ARM Core Could Finally Break x86’s Long Computing Monopoly
- Is Your AMD X570 Motherboard Secretly Overclocking Your CPU?