AMD announces third-gen Threadripper chips, delays Ryzen 9 3950X launch to November

Polycount

TS Evangelist
Staff member

In the realm of high-performance computing, AMD undoubtedly has the advantage in today's market. As we note in our Best CPUs of 2019 line-up, the company's 7nm Ryzen 9 3900X offers better workstation performance than its similarly-priced competition, while still holding its own in the gaming front.

We also pointed out in our piece that AMD's Ryzen 9 3950X is just around the corner; in fact, the chip was supposed to launch this month with 16 cores, 32 threads, and a base clock speed of 3.5Ghz. Unfortunately, if you were holding out hope for a timely release, we've got some mixed news for you today: the 3950X has been delayed to November (no specific day has been announced) so AMD can better focus on meeting the "strong demand" for existing 3rd-gen Ryzen offerings.

Now for the "mixed" part of the news: while the 3950X won't be launching as soon as previously stated, AMD softened the blow a bit by announcing its third-gen Threadripper CPUs. Sadly, the company didn't offer much in the way of details, other than a vague claim that they will "premiere" with 24 cores. Regardless, the chips will also be launching in November, so PC hardware enthusiasts won't be starved for choice over the holiday season.

The relevant portion of AMD's statement is as follows:

We are focusing on meeting the strong demand for our 3rd generation AMD Ryzen processors in the market and now plan to launch both the AMD Ryzen 9 3950X and initial members of the 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper processor family in volume this November. We are confident that when enthusiasts get their hands on the world’s first 16-core mainstream desktop processor and our next-generation of high-end desktop processors, the wait will be well worth it.

Naturally, we don't recommend that any of our readers go out and try to snag one of these chips on day one. As always, we advise you to wait for reviews and benchmarks (such as our own) before making a purchase decision.

However, given AMD's track record in the CPU market as of late (barring some supply issues), we'll be surprised if the company's upcoming products don't set new performance or value standards in their respective price brackets.

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R

retsxel

I'm not in a hurry to build, but third gen threadripper will definitely be my next processor.
I've been thinking about TR for a little bit. Thinking I might go that route as well. Can't decide between the 1900X and the 2920X. The 1900X can OC easier, but the 2920X has more cores and higher default ram speed...
 

Mr Majestyk

TS Maniac
I do a fair bit of simulation (CFD, Matlab, Mathematica) as well as gaming. I'm guessing I'd be better off with 3950X on balance than TR3, but it will be interesting to see what clock speeds TR3 ships with and how it fairs with gaming.
 
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wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
TR 3 has 24-cores to start? Sounds like AMD is likely trying to prevent any competition between TR 3 parts and the Ryzen 9 series. I wonder where they will price it. sIntel set the bar for HEDT pricing, so I would be surprised if we see a TR 3 under $1k because they can.

AMD's top-end parts were more expensive than sIntel's back in the days before Core 2; it would not surprise me if AMD does the same thing now. What would surprise me, given the price of the top TR 2 part, is if AMD actually made these reasonably priced parts. It will be interesting to see where they are priced, however, I would not be surprised to see the top-end TR 3 parts in excess of $2K.

It's good to have the competition, but IMO, it took too long to get to market which in turn, let sIntel asininely price their HEDT parts which now enables AMD to asininely price their HEDT parts.

Ah, the perils of a vicious circle.
 
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wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
I do a fair bit of simulation (CFD, Matlab, Mathematica) as well as gaming. I'm guessing I'd be better off with 3950X on balance than TR3, but it will be interesting to see what clock speeds TR3 ships with and how it fairs with gaming.
Those types of programs, particularly CFD/FEA with high mesh density, benefit the most from a wide memory bus - which TR sports. Unless you are using Mathematica or Matlab as a solver for the CFD, my bet is that you are correct. However, high mesh density CFD/FEA should benefit from a fully-fleshed out memory bus.

IMO, it definitely would be interesting to see these parts tested with real workstation work loads - especially very high mesh density CFD/FEA/CAD. However, I would be surprised if any but a very few tech sites go there.
 
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yRaz

Nigerian Prince
I do a fair bit of simulation (CFD, Matlab, Mathematica) as well as gaming. I'm guessing I'd be better off with 3950X on balance than TR3, but it will be interesting to see what clock speeds TR3 ships with and how it fairs with gaming.
Those types of programs, particularly CFD/FEA with high mesh density, benefit the most from a wide memory bus - which TR sports. Unless you are using Mathematica or Matlab as a solver for the CFD, my bet is that you are correct. However, high mesh density CFD/FEA should benefit from a fully-fleshed out memory bus.

IMO, it definitely would be interesting to see these parts tested with real workstation work loads - especially very high mesh density CFD/FEA/CAD. However, I would be surprised if any but a very few tech sites go there.
Anandtech will probably be one of the only ones and the only one people really cite
 
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Aus spot

TS Enthusiast
Yeah, get a 16-core CPU for your desktop, extract the mighty 1% of its performance on an average.

People like drooling over things they do not need.
This has got to take the thread's prize for most useless comment.
For a start even if only using one core 1/16 is not 1%. No where near.

Many games can use 8 cores now. In the future likey more. Never seen on average games using less cores.

Now take the mindset away from games and onto any basic productivity and many cores can be used.

For me I game and use video and possibly encoding in the back if I had the grunt all at the same time. 16 cores will be great and a bit of future proofing.
 

wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
Anandtech will probably be one of the only ones and the only one people really cite
They were one of the ones that I was thinking of. Perhaps Tom's, too. I have seen Tom's run SolidWorks benchmarks - though people I know argue that SolidWorks is not high-end.
 

Hardware Geek

TS Addict
I've been thinking about TR for a little bit. Thinking I might go that route as well. Can't decide between the 1900X and the 2920X. The 1900X can OC easier, but the 2920X has more cores and higher default ram speed...
I've been really tempted to buy one of the insane deals I've seen on the first gen, but I want pcie gen 4. I might however pick up a second gen threadripper and a motherboard that supports pcie gen 4 so I have the ability to increase core counts and storage speeds at my leisure. I'm still running a 4th gen i7 on a sata ssd raid array. Patience is not a problem and I don't play games much, nor is that a primary concern, but do want to have that option available now that the kids are getting older. The plan is to have multiple simultaneous VMs running so they each have their own "computer" so to speak, but one I control and can allocate more or less resources to as necessary, and they can run off the local network on a basic thin client.
 

DrSuess

TS Rookie
Yeah, get a 16-core CPU for your desktop, extract the mighty 1% of its performance on an average.

People like drooling over things they do not need.
Some of us use applications that benefit significantly from more cores and RAM. I use Matlab, Labview and various compilers, and run simulations that kick off 100+ system threads. I have used this workflow on a 4-core system and it was painful.

I was ready to buy but if I have to wait I might just get the threadripper if attractively priced.
 
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DrSuess

TS Rookie
TR 3 has 24-cores to start? Sounds like AMD is likely trying to prevent any competition between TR 3 parts and the Ryzen 9 series. I wonder where they will price it. sIntel set the bar for HEDT pricing, so I would be surprised if we see a TR 3 under $1k because they can.

Ah, the perils of a vicious circle.
I think a 24-core TR 3 has a lot more to do with the scarcity of 7nm chiplets, by not creating a 32-core TR 3 those 7nm chiplets can be used on other Ryzen products that are also scarce like 3900X, and we can assume the 3950X when available. Their decisions are production related.
 

wiyosaya

TS Evangelist
I think a 24-core TR 3 has a lot more to do with the scarcity of 7nm chiplets, by not creating a 32-core TR 3 those 7nm chiplets can be used on other Ryzen products that are also scarce like 3900X, and we can assume the 3950X when available. Their decisions are production related.
Maybe so. Scarcity may, in whole or in part, also be related to demand.

The 3950X is a 16-core part. https://www.amd.com/en/products/cpu/amd-ryzen-9-3950x In previous generations, the core count of the low-end TR parts was the same as high-end Ryzen parts. They were also very closely priced which put them in direct competition with each other; that may have hurt sales of either the Ryzen or the TR part - depending on affordability to the end-user.

By starting TR 3 parts with more cores than high-end Ryzen parts, they no longer directly compete with each other. There is a clear differentiation between TR and Ryzen in gen 3. TR is appears aimed at HEDT/Workstation/Prosumers. Ryzen may do well in similar workloads; however, head-to-head, the higher core count on the TR parts should easily give TR 3 a good lead over Ryzen especially for applications that can make use of the extra cores. I am sure they will be bench-marked against each other, and that, of course, will show the differences.
 

Theinsanegamer

TS Evangelist
Yeah, get a 16-core CPU for your desktop, extract the mighty 1% of its performance on an average.

People like drooling over things they do not need.
This has got to take the thread's prize for most useless comment.
For a start even if only using one core 1/16 is not 1%. No where near.

Many games can use 8 cores now. In the future likey more. Never seen on average games using less cores.

Now take the mindset away from games and onto any basic productivity and many cores can be used.

For me I game and use video and possibly encoding in the back if I had the grunt all at the same time. 16 cores will be great and a bit of future proofing.
I mean, I agree with you, but "most games cant use 8 cores now"? Citation needed. As a reminder, the 6 core 6 thread core i5 9600 CPUs regularly beat out the 3800x from AMD in games in 1%, .1%, and average frame rates. Even quad cores are still capable of keeping up in certain games.

Games can now use 3-4 cores more effectively, resulting in 6 core CPUs being generally faster as modern OSes are far better at load balancing then they were back when the phenom II x6 came out. It will likely be another 5-10 years before having 8 CPU cores becomes mandatory for decent performance, especially as the upcoming generation of game consoles will still have only 8 cores, and likely will still only allow games to use 5-6 cores like current consoles do.
 

VitalyT

Russ-Puss
It is easy to tell a thinker from a nut ball. The latter tends to understand every statement literally. Like when I said 1% performance, they cannot fathom it being a wide verbal approximation.
 

Aus spot

TS Enthusiast
. Like when I said 1% performance, they cannot fathom it being a wide verbal approximation.
You said it, can't run away from it now. Your wide approx is so far off, if you drove to new york, you would end up in alaska. As described previsiously there was no basis in fact for those who use a PC for more than games and little for those that do.

Just admit you made the wrong call.

Oh and you note I rubbished your comment, not you personally. If all you can do is make personal attacks then maybe you need to take a long hard look at yourself and consider if you should be posting.
 
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VitalyT

Russ-Puss
Oh and you note I rubbished your comment, not you personally. If all you can do is make personal attacks then maybe you need to take a long hard look at yourself and consider if you should be posting.
I was referencing several comments above, not just your own. So it is in fact yourself who just made it personally.

In your own words:

Just admit you made the wrong call
And stop attacking people, that's very rude. This is not Reddit.
 

Markoni35

TS Addict
What's the purpose of TR? Only a small number of people really need it. And it's adding a new naming scheme that totally doesn't fit with anything else. Why didn't they just add it to the Ryzen 9 line, so that Ryzen 9 family looks even more impressive compared to Intel?
 
R

retsxel

What's the purpose of TR?
If you have to ask that question, the answer would be meaningless to you.

Only a small number of people really need it.
Opinion not supported by market research and demands.

And it's adding a new naming scheme that totally doesn't fit with anything else. Why didn't they just add it to the Ryzen 9 line, so that Ryzen 9 family looks even more impressive compared to Intel?
That's like asking why Intel needs the Extreme series of Core-I CPU or even the Xeon's.
 
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