AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D | Review

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D | Review

Finally, the new AMD Ryzen 7000 series processors with 3D V-Cache technology are coming to market. This solution, already used on the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, allows you to have a cache memory stacked on the die which guarantees a significant increase in performance, especially in gaming.

All the advantages of Zen 4 with 3D V -Cache

The new Ryzen 7000 models, including the top of the range Ryzen 9 7950X3D , presented in this review, retain all the innovations introduced with the Zen 4 architecture produced at 5nm. In particular, there has been a significant increase in the average IPC of 13% compared to the previous generation, thanks to the new front-end design and the new branch prediction, which now manages two branches per cycle. Furthermore, there is an increase in the L2 cache and a greater load/store capacity.

But the news does not end there. The Ryzen 7000s feature a new 6nm I/O Die, integrated RDNA2 graphics, ECC DRAM support, 28 PCIe 5.0 lanes (4 more than the previous generation), USB Type C support (up to 3 USB 3.2 + 1 USB -A 3.2 + 1 USB 2.0) and the BIOS flashback feature, now also directly introduced by AMD for medium-low-end motherboards that don't have a proprietary one.

The integrated graphics, while not suitable for gaming, support AV1 decoding, H.264/H.65 encoding and decoding, DisplayPort 2.0 UHBR10, HDMI 2.1 with fixed-rate link, video via USB-C as DisplayPort alternative and monitor up to 4K 60fps. The new Hybrid Graphics feature allows you to connect a monitor to the CPU's integrated graphics, perhaps via the USB-C port, but still use the discrete GPU to render content.

Not only that, the Ryzen 7000s support AVX-512 instructions, which greatly improve the use of software capable of exploiting them, without affecting operating frequencies. AMD claimed to have increased the frequencies without worsening the latencies, but keeping them similar to those of the Ryzen 5000, guaranteeing a further increase in performance.

Finally, the Ryzen 7000 offer support for DDR5 and PCIe 5.0 technologies, the new AM5 socket, an LGA1718 with 1718 pins, with which AMD abandons the old AM4 BGA and which makes the processor installation practically identical to that of Intel solutions.

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D: the top for gamers and content creators

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D is defined by AMD as the ultimate processor for gamers and content creators. The chip features 16 cores and 32 threads with a base frequency of 4.2GHz, but capable of maxing out at 5.7GHz, integrates 128MB of 3D V-Cache (for a total of 144MB of cache), and has a TDP of 120W .

The asymmetric chiplet design , with two different CCX units , was the right choice for AMD. In fact, it reduces costs compared to dual 3D V-Cache setup without sacrificing gaming performance. Also, frequency-dependent applications can run faster on the standard CCX unit, achieving a perfect balance.

The AMD chipset drivers also offer some specific optimizations for Ryzen 7000 processors with 3D V-Cache, such as the Ryzen 9 7950X3D. The “ AMD 3D V-Cache performance optimizer driver ” feature evaluates computer performance in real time and dynamically changes the cores preferred by the Windows operating system. In practice, it chooses whether to use the CCX with 3D V-Cache (for caching) or the standard one (for frequency) based on the workload. The driver does everything automatically, but you can manually intervene in the BIOS if you wish. This way, you will get the best and optimal performance according to your needs.

Finally, there is the “ AMD PPM provisioning file driver ” feature, which detects when a game is running and running on only one CCX, while the second is used dynamically to reduce response times and improve overall fluidity. Basically, the game runs on the CCX that offers the best performance, usually the one with the largest cache, and this means higher performance.

In the new BIOS there is a new setting, which appears when it is detected a processor with 3D V-Cache. It is called “ CPPC Dynamic Preferred Cores ” and allows you to manage these behaviors through four modes: Auto / Driver are the two that allow you to change performance dynamically (for the tests we used the Auto mode, as indicated by AMD); Frequency forces the preference of CCD1 without 3D V-Cache and finally Cache, as the name suggests, forces the preference of CCD0 with 3D V-Cache.

AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D AMD Ryzen 9 7950X Core/Thread 16/ 32 16/32 Max Boost 5.7GHz 5.5GHz Base Clock 4.2GHz 4.5GHz L2 Cache 16MB 16MB L3 Cache 128MB 64MB TDP 120W 170W TjMax 89°C 100°C Boost Algorithm Precision Boost 2 Precision Boost 2 Maximum memory speed (Non-OC) DDR5-5200 (2x16GB) DDR5-5200 (2x16GB)


To evaluate the performance of the Ryzen 9 7950X3D we used a suite with productivity and rendering software, games, synthetic benchmarks and loads workstations. For the tests we used test platforms as similar as possible, adopting on both PCIe 4.0 SSDs, 32GB DDR5-6000 CL30 RAM, an AIO cooler with 360mm radiator, an RTX 4090 and Windows 11 version 22H2. The only difference obviously lies in the motherboard, with X670E chipset for AMD processors and Z790 for Intel ones.

In addition to the graphs with the percentage differences between the processors, we have also included those with the FPS obtained in the different tests. As far as consumption is concerned, we recorded both the peak data recorded under stress during a rendering with Blender and the average and maximum data obtained in the game with Cyberpunk 2077.

Games performance

The benchmarks the games were run at Full HD resolution with maximum details, to better highlight the differences between the processors tested. If available we use the integrated test, in particular in F1 22 we choose rainy weather conditions and the Monaco circuit. In Doom Eternal, where the built-in benchmark is not present, we fight several demons in a limited area of ​​the map, so that we can easily repeat the test.

The Ryzen 9 7950X3D proves to be faster than the Core i9-13900K and Ryzen 9 7950X  in practically all games, except for Far Cry 6 where the new AMD processor is about 3.5% slower than the top of the range Intel. The 3D V-Cache remains fantastic in games, guaranteeing an average performance improvement over the Ryzen 9 7950X of 14% and 12% over the Core i9-13900K in these tests.

Since the new features of the Ryzen 9 7950X3D mainly concern the video game field, we carried out other tests with video games, which you can see below. We again compared the processor with Core i9-13900K and Ryzen 9 7950X, obtaining results that reaffirm what we have already seen: the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is the best gaming CPU, with overall performance 11% higher than the Core i9-13900K and nearly 12% better than the Ryzen 9 7950X.

Rendering performance

For rendering we use Cinebench R23, POV-Ray and Blender, respectively two fairly famous synthetic benchmarking software and a program also used by several professionals. With the first two we perform both single core and multi core tests, while with Blender we render the demo scene called "Classroom", available for download on the official website of the software.

Where 3D V-Cache doesn't have much say, the performance of the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is in line with (or slightly lower than) that of the Ryzen 9 7950X; a result not too surprising considering the few technical differences between the two processors. On average the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is about 8% slower than the Core i9-13900K,  but the difference is mostly noticeable in Cinebench and POV-Ray; in Blender the two processors take the same time to finish the render.

Office load performance

For typical office use we use PCMark 10, where we run both the general test and the Applications one, which takes advantage of the Microsoft Office suite and the Edge browser to evaluate the performance of the most common software, both in offices and in home use of the computer, where you surf the net and manage emails and documents.

These benchmarks still show a slight superiority of the Core i9-13900K, which is faster than both Ryzen 9s. The Ryzen 9 7950X3D has practically equivalent performance to the Ryzen 9 7950X, while it is about 3 % slower than Intel CPU.

Performance under workstation loads

The last set of benchmarks shows what performance would be like in a workstation. We use 7-Zip for file compression and decompression, Handbrake  for video transcoding in H.264 and H.265,  UL Procyon  for photo editing performance with Lightroom Classic and Photoshop and SpecViewPerf,  which integrates multiple mathematical calculation tests, modeling , graphics and rendering.

The workstation loads are diversified and therefore show different scenarios: on average the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is slightly slower than the Ryzen 9 7950X is in line with the Core i9-13900K, but as you can see from the graphs, in some cases the Intel processors are much more performing than the AMD ones (as in the Poisson test), in others the Red team solutions have the upper hand (like in Decompression or Convolution), in still others they are very close together. In the Handbrake H.264 test, the difference between Ryzen 9 7950X3D and Ryzen 9 7950X appears marked, but in reality it is only 1 second.

Consumption and temperatures

We record consumption and temperatures in two different tests, under stress and in play. The latter scenario is the most interesting, because the CPU is under less pressure and therefore heats up and consumes less. For the stress test we use Blender and the “Classroom” demo file, while for the gaming tests Cyberpunk 2077.


The Ryzen 9 7950X3D records low consumption in both benchmarks, which put it in an excellent position both compared to the Core i9-13900K and the Ryzen 9 7950X, also thanks to the 120 watt TDP. In the Blender stress test, we recorded 144 watts, which is 35% less than the Ryzen 9 7950X and 52% less than the Core i9-13900K. In gaming we record maximum consumption of 95 watts, while on average the processor absorbs 74 watts; also in this case, about 50% less than the Core i9-13900K.


Excellent results also for what concerns temperatures, which do not go above 72°C in gaming and approach 80°C in Blender. Here too, the Ryzen 9 7950X3D performs better than the Core i9-13900K and the Ryzen 9 7950X, remaining cooler in both tests.


Last year the Ryzen 7 5800X3D gave a good shock to the world of CPUs, showing how much impact 3D V-Cache was in video games and making enthusiasts clamor for the arrival of the technology even on higher-end processors. The new Ryzen 7000 with 3D V-Cache aim to replicate the success of their predecessor, but they will probably do better: in addition to all the benefits in the gaming field and the resulting performance increases, the new solutions in fact enjoy all the innovations of the architecture, which allow AMD processors to compete on equal terms with the thirteenth generation Intel Raptor Lake.

As we have seen from the tests, outside of gaming the Ryzen 9 7950X3D offers very similar performance to those Ryzen 9 7950X "smooth", without 3D V-Cache, resulting overall very close to the Intel Core i9-13900K. The substantial difference, however, lies in gaming: we tested a total of 14 different games and as you have seen from the graphs, the only one in which the top of the Intel range is faster is Far Cry 6: in all the others the Ryzen 9 7950X3D dominates, with a gap that even exceeds 30% in F1 22. Taking the average, the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is almost 11% faster than the Core i9-13900K in gaming.

The performance increase of the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is also accompanied by better energy efficiency, with the TDP dropping from 170 watts to 120 watts, a factor that translates into lower consumption: looking at our consumption tests , we see that in Blender the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is as fast as the Core i9-13900K but consumes less than half, while in Cyberpunk 2077 it is 5% faster and the average consumption is about 51% lower. Compared to the Ryzen 9 7950X, in Blender the new CPU is 5% slower but consumes 35% less energy, while in Cyberpunk 2077 it is 11% faster and consumes 34% less energy. Even with regard to temperatures, the balance leans in favor of the Ryzen 9 7950X3D, cooler than the other two CPUs examined in this comparison.

Summing up, it seems that AMD has created the ideal processor for those who want a top-of-the-range configuration dedicated to gaming: the new Ryzen 9 7950X3D is the best processor for gaming and is obviously also suitable for many other tasks, thanks to the high number of cores and the benefits of the architecture Zen 4. It should also be noted that, unlike what happened with the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, on these new models it is possible to take advantage of Curve Optimizer and Precision Boot Overdrive, for an automatic overclock that further increases performance; unfortunately it is not yet possible to overclock manually, but it is still a step forward.

Speaking of prices, the Ryzen 9 7950X3D should debut in our market at 799 Euros, while the Ryzen 9 7900X3D (absent in this review as not received) should have a price between 699€ and 719€. The price is higher than both the Ryzen 9 7950X, which can be purchased at the time of writing for around €630, and the Core i9-13900K, available at around €615, but not exaggerated considering that the other two processors have been on the market for some month and have undergone price cuts.

In conclusion, if you want to build a top-of-the-range PC and love to play games, then the Ryzen 9 7950X3D is the processor to choose. The only unknown remains availability, but the hope of course is that at launch there will be enough processors to meet demand and thus prevent the price from skyrocketing.

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