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AMD Ryzen 3000 series memory controller can overclock up to DDR4 5000 MHz

By DarkLord · 17 replies
May 13, 2019
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  1. As we edge closer to the launch of AMD's Ryzen 3000 series we are learning more details about some of the new features it will offer. The latest of which is that the Zen 2 architecture will be able to overclock its memory controller much higher than previous Zen implementations (and thus previous-gen Ryzen CPUs), as high as DDR4 5000 MHz according to the most recent wave of leaks. If this turns out to be the case it will mean that AMD's memory controller has now reached parity with Intel in terms of overclocking capability.

    With Zen 2 AMD has moved the memory controller and PCI Express logic to a separate chip called the "IO die" which will still be manufactured using the existing 12nm process node while the CPU cores and CPU cache will be manufactured with the new 7nm node. The "IO die" will communicate with the "CPU die" via AMD's Infinity Fabric similar to other Zen designs. This separation will also allow AMD to quickly manufacturer new chips and possibly scale CPU core count higher than current generations.

    It remains to be confirmed if these new Ryzen 3000 series CPU's will be able to scale their memory controllers as high on older motherboard platforms such as the X470 and B450 or if this will be a new feature that will help entice users to upgrade to the upcoming X570 platform.

    It will also be interesting to see how much of a performance uplift this will give the Ryzen 3000 series overall, because as we have seen before in testing the Zen architecture is much more memory sensitive then Intel's Core designs and increasing the memory speed has yielded sizable performance increases. One thing is certain, we wont have to wait much longer to see what AMD's latest offering can do.

    Permalink to story.

  2. pcnthuziast

    pcnthuziast TS Evangelist Posts: 545   +153

    Anyone looking to buy a ddr4 kit right now, better not wait. I predict when Zen 2 releases prices will spike like crazy again. Also we'll see new faster kits and some of the most expensive "mainstream" prices ever.
    Clynt and onestepforward like this.
  3. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,803   +3,187

    I've already got a DDR4 4266 kit that runs at 3466 on current Zen+, which is pretty much the limits of the current memory controller. It would be nice to see a sizable jump here
    Charles Olson likes this.
  4. amstech

    amstech IT Overlord Posts: 2,143   +1,308

    All of this damn teasing!
    Evernessince and wiyosaya like this.
  5. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 3,703   +2,071

    Yes. Two weeks until reality manifests itself, and Lisa Su's keynote address will be streamed live! :)

    Charles Olson and Lounds like this.
  6. Bluescreendeath

    Bluescreendeath TS Addict Posts: 111   +139

    What is a good price per performance level of DDR4, or the level where DDR4 performance starts leveling off and gets greatly diminishing returns? DDR4 3000Mhz? 3200Mhz?
  7. bluetooth fairy

    bluetooth fairy TS Booster Posts: 70   +53

    Well, well. TechSpot jumps on this hype train. Let me leave my 5 cents.

    If rumours are correct, the Infinity Fabric can limit memory OC anyway. Or you should choose to set 1/2 divider for IF speed. This, in turn, could degrade overall CPU performance gained from memory OC. Another note is of X570 which could be required for all the bells and whistles to really work.

    Too early for talks, folks.
    Morris Minor and Paul Dougherty like this.
  8. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,803   +3,187

    Anything above 2933 has very little returns in games or most applications and typically you can find 2933 or 3000 for the same price as 2133. Going above that is more or less for fun and that little extra performance. I honestly have not had this much fun overclocking RAM in a long time.

    Infinity fabric was never the bottleneck in the case of Ryzen. Ryzen and Ryzen plus were both bottlenecked at the memory controller. For example, you can increase the infinity fabric speed by increasing the memory frequency past 3466 MHz but it had to be with loose timings. If the infinity fabric was the bottleneck, it would not be fine with those higher speeds.
    Charles Olson and TempleOrion like this.
  9. Paul Dougherty

    Paul Dougherty TS Rookie

    The odds of 5,000 MHz DDR4 on the 3000 series are probably the same as winning the Powerball. And tanking the Infinity Fabric to 2,500 MHz to get there would probably end up with worse performance than just using DDR4-3200.

    Hopefully, AMD can increase the IF and memory speed a bit, but I'd expect more in the neighborhood of ~3600 MHz on most chips (up from ~3000 now).
  10. pcnthuziast

    pcnthuziast TS Evangelist Posts: 545   +153

    If I was going to jump on Zen 2 I'd wanna keep my current ram, but I think it may be too slow. 2x16 2666 c16 1.2v.
  11. Paul Dougherty

    Paul Dougherty TS Rookie

    You could use the old stuff and upgrade it later.
  12. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,803   +3,187

    May not even matter as rumor has it they are decoupling the IF speed from the RAM speed for Zen 2.
  13. grumblguts

    grumblguts TS Enthusiast Posts: 43   +35

    How can AMD do this if their cpu dont use the ring buss.
  14. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 4,363   +2,872

    Sorry for not sharing everyone's enthusiasm here...

    But the true reason AMD is doing a PR like this is to make sure that by the time Ryzen 3000 is released, it does not become obsolete right away, because the first CPU-s with DDR5 memory controllers are coming this year, and Ryzen 3000 platform is the last DDR4-based, which is kind-of sad.

    This is also the most likely reason why the new Threadripper is delayed, because it's gonna be using DDR5, I hope, and as such it would destroy AMD's own Ryzen platform in terms of the performance.

    How much better will DDR5 perform over DDR4's 5Ghz? How about 50%? :)

    - source.
    Last edited: May 14, 2019
    Clynt likes this.
  15. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,803   +3,187

    First generation implementations of memory rarely beat last gen right out of the gate. It took awhile for both DDR3 and DDR4 to mature to the point where it was worthwhile to upgrade.
    Charles Olson, Clynt and TempleOrion like this.
  16. Paul Dougherty

    Paul Dougherty TS Rookie

    If history provides a guide, then we can expect DDR5 to be barely any faster whenever it launches. That's been the case since DDR originally launched twenty years ago. Overclockers had SDRAM running at high speeds. DDR launched and had higher clockspeeds, but higher latency. So, depending on that (and some other things, memory controllers weren't in the CPU at the time) SDR might have still been faster.

    High-end last gen memory has been faster than the new stuff, basically, forever.

    Intel doesn't seem to be planning DDR5 on the desktop soon. I think Threadripper being delayed it's so good chiplets can be used in Epyc which sells for a lot more.
    Charles Olson and TempleOrion like this.
  17. Puiu

    Puiu TS Evangelist Posts: 3,298   +1,749

    DDR5 will start at around 4800 MT/s (up to at least 6400 MT/s without any overclocking) while running at 1.1V. It also has other improvements that go beyond raw bandwidth and power efficiency. At the same frequency, DDR5 should be over 30% faster compared to DDR4.
    VitalyT likes this.
  18. Araeven

    Araeven TS Rookie

    Intel's roadmap shows DDR5 scheduled for 2021. I would not expect AMD to release that this year, earliest next year with Zen 3. If it comes out next year at all and not in 2021 just like Intel and launches at the same time as PCIe 5.0.

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