AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2920X And 2970WX Review: Lower Cost, Many Core Beasts

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Ryzen Threadripper 2920X And 2970WX - Our Summary And Verdict

Performance Summary: AMD's Ryzen Threadripper 2920X performed very well throughout our testing and punches well above its weight class. Because it is not quite as thermally dense and features relatively high clocks for a many-core Threadripper processor, the 2920X maintains boost frequencies more often than some of the other chips, and ultimately ends up offering some of the best single-threaded performance from a Ryzen processor, along with strong multi-threaded performance as well. It obviously couldn’t catch Ryzen Threadrippers with more cores, in highly threaded workloads, but the Threadripper 2920X outpaces a far more expensive 10-core Core i9-7900X in multi-threaded tests. It also clearly beats the Core i9-9900K in multi-threaded tests as well, though the 9900K is the current king in single and lightly-threaded workloads.

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AMD Second Generation Ryzen Threadripper Processors -- Find Them At Amazon

Like the Threadripper 2990WX, the Threadripper 2970WX’s overall performance differs depending on the use case. In compute-intensive, multithreaded workloads like those associated with content creation, the 24-core / 48-thread Threadripper 2970WX is the second most powerful desktop processor money can buy. In our ray-tracing and rendering tests, the Threadripper 2970WX was faster than Intel’s flagship Core i9-7980XE, and trailed only the Threadripper 2990WX. Less demanding workloads, however, may not always perform at expected levels due to the non-unified memory architecture and core topology of the 2970WX.

Regardless, AMD gives users the ability to mitigate this issue with a simple toggles in its Ryzen Master Utility and Dynamic Local Mode. In addition, potential updates to Windows may make it much less of a concern in time, but it’s something to be aware of, should you want a Threadripper 2970WX today.

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We suspect the 2nd Gen Ryzen Threadripper 2920X and 2970WX are going to be quite popular with their intended audiences. Enthusiasts looking to jump onto AMD’s HEDT platform with now have a much lower cost of entry thanks to the Threadripper 2920X’s $649 price point. And professional workstation users can snag an immensely powerful (with the right workloads) $1299 24-core Threadripper 2970WX for $500 less than the flagship 2990WX and roughly $900 - $1100 less than an 18-core Core i9 or Xeon processor.

These processors aren’t cheap by any means, but the Threadripper 2920X and 2970WX are good values in the current landscape, relative to other HEDT processors and we look forward to seeing how AMD continues to optimize the platform moving forward.

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  • Strong Multi-Threaded Performance
  • Zen+ Enhancements
  • Easy Performance Boost With PBO
  • Mature Platform
  • Maintains Compatibility With Existing Mobos
  • Competitive Pricing
  • 2970WX Falters With Some Workloads
  • Single Thread Perf Still Trails Intel Overall

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