Motherboard software bug can accidentally kill AMD Ryzen X3D CPUs

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,806   +180
Staff member
In brief: An apparent bug has been discovered in the motherboard management software from several leading board vendors that makes it incredibly easy to fry your X3D-based AMD CPU. We do not yet have a timetable for when safeguards will be installed so until then, be very careful when tinkering around in motherboard management software with these chips. One mistake and poof, your CPU could become a shiny desk ornament.

Igor's Lab recently stumbled upon the issue while tinkering around in MSI Center. Using an MSI B550 Unify board with an AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D processor, Igor noticed the software was seemingly detecting the chip as a standard Ryzen 5xxx, which does not have 3D vertically stacked L3 cache.

The extra cache is known to boost gaming performance but its physical presence also negatively impacts heat dissipation, which is one reason why it ships with slower clock speeds than the standard 5800X.

With the software unable to detect an X3D chip, it treats it like a standard Ryzen 5xxx and allows largely unfettered manipulation of the core multiplier and core voltage. Intrigued, Igor fiddled with the voltage settings and managed to kill the CPU in short order. He did not mention how much juice was fed to the chip to take its life but Tom's Hardware notes that core voltage can be set all the way up to 1.55v.

Worse yet, the apparent bug has since been discovered in similar management software from ASRock, Asus and Gigabyte.

Just last week, renowned overclocker der8auer tried his hand at overclocking and overvolting the AMD Ryzen 7950X3D. Even with liquid nitrogen, the chip instantly died when the core voltage was set to 1.55v. der8auer barely made it out of the BIOS (and without any significant load) before things went south. Needless to say, he was surprised it died so quickly.

At the very least, it sounds like these extreme core voltage options should carry a firm warning before users are allowed to apply risky settings.

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Posts: 363   +403
There's a simple lesson to learn here. If you want to tweak anything CPU related within the OS itself use Ryzen Master or Intel XTU. Nothing else.


Posts: 435   +182
The problem with the software is that it is OLD and hasn't been updated to recognise newer CPU's properly so ofcourse it sees an R7 5800X3D as a standard R7 5800X duh it doesn't know any better
It's not a bug, it's a feature. Makes AMD sell more chips :)
It's not a bug, even on my non buggy X670E Godlike I could manually push the voltage way up and fry some chips. In fact most motherboards allow you to manually push the voltage. You could kill almost any over-clockable Intel/AMD chip as well by overvolting it.


Posts: 718   +336
I got a 5800x3D... Undervolt to -200mV or absolute 1V and it idles at 40ºC. Never gets past 47 gaming, Full load all cores get to 68.
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Posts: 308   +171
I didn't know the overclocking BIOSes even had a safe limit, I just assumed it was common sense to not crank the voltage up all the way. Not surprised running a chip at like 50% over the proper voltage fries it.
This is not a bug, the AMD SMU still allows this on X3D chips as there is nothing blocking you from writing to it directly and the SMU of these Ryzen chips simply has the same commands as all others of its generation.

The AMD AGESA and Ryzen Master just hide this from the user, you can very easily do this via ZenStates on Windows or through the Ryzen SMU on Linux (albeit manually).
There's nothing accidental about purposely entering your bios, ignoring the multiple warnings, then manually overclocking your CPU. Even if you somehow bought an X3D chip without knowing they're locked for a reason, you never overclock the voltage unless you're ready to kill your hardware. Misinformation clickbait is the wordt kind of clickbait