At Computex 2019, an international tech conference held in Taipei, AMD announced what drove tech enthusiasts into a frenzy: the AMD Ryzen 3000 series, new processors that promise to push the boundaries of any hardware previously shown.
This is remarkable because AMD has been the second processor among processors for quite some time now, always behind Intel despite tremendous efforts from AMD.
What makes AMD Ryzen 3000 so special is that its specs could put the company ahead of Intel, and in some cases even negate previous record benchmarks.
As you begin to understand why and how this happens, you will quickly find yourself in a jargon and jargon jungle. In this article, in a non-professional language, it will be explained how this processor differs from others and why it is important.
Determine the conditions
Certain terms are used in relation to hardware, which are the best way to explain certain concepts. We will do our best to define them here so that they are easy to understand and remember.
- Nanometer (nm): A nanometer is one billionth of a meter. Numerically, this is 0.000000001 meters. Nanometers are abbreviated as â€œnmâ€.
- Transistor: A semiconductor found on the chip that is either on or off. Transistors are important sensors for CPUs (central processing units). A good rule of thumb is that the more transistors, the more efficient the processor.
- Central Processing Unit (CPU): The CPU is the â€œbrainâ€ of the computer. This small chip sits inside the motherboard and controls many of the operations and processes that take place on your PC. The CPU is also referred to as a “processor” or, less commonly, a “microprocessor”.
- Motherboard. If the CPU is the “brain” of the computer, then the motherboard is the cardiovascular, endocrine, and musculoskeletal systems. The motherboard is a fiberglass and copper circuit board that directs the flow of power to the various components, organizes the results of the CPU processes, and acts as a central connection for the various components.
- Core: You often hear about “multi-core” processors. This is the part of the CPU that performs calculations based on given instructions. CPUs come in single-core, dual-core, quad-core, and eight-core. Although there are processors with even more cores, they usually outperform consumer-grade hardware.
- Thread: Computationally, a “thread” is a sequence of instructions that the processor executes. Multithreading is when the CPU splits up different threads between its cores to perform more than one operation at a time.
- Cycle: single electronic pulse from the CPU.
- Clock Speed: The number of cycles per second that the CPU can execute.
- Overclocking: The act of increasing the processor’s clock speed beyond what it was designed for. The higher the clock speed, the more heat the processor produces. The clock speed is limited by how much the CPU and its materials can get hot before the computer is permanently damaged.
- Cache: A smaller aggregate of memory at higher speeds that often stores frequently needed data or information. quick and easy access.
A note on Moore’s law
Moore’s Law is not “law” in the scientific or legal sense; rather, it is the observation that the number of transistors on a single processor doubles year after year.
It is named after Gordon Moore, Intel CEO and founder of Fairchild Semiconductor, based on an article he wrote in 1965. Moore’s Law has been observed for decades, but in recent years it has begun to be refuted.
This number will double because the transistors will become smaller and require significantly less power. As we get closer to the limits of current manufacturing processes, the number of transistors added each year also decreases. The AMD Ryzen 3000 series marks the first time that transistors have shrunk dramatically since 2014.
Transistors are usually made of silicon, but below 7 nm they become bulky. Physical space is so packed that electrons actually pass through physical barriers. (The official name for this phenomenon is quantum tunneling.
Don’t worry about that.) However, materials other than silicon can work so closely together to create even smaller transistors. Manufacturers and computer scientists are conducting research to overcome this hurdle. The discovery of a material that can be used to make smaller transistors on a mass scale would be a big breakthrough in computer hardware.
AMD Ryzen 3000 specifications
Now that we have those terms, let’s take a closer look at just how powerful the AMD Ryzen 3000 series is. At Computex, AMD announced five specific processors (although the leak has increased since then):
- Ryzen 9 3900X: 12-core, 24-thread, 3.8 GHz base clock and 4.6 GHz boost. Starting price: $ 499.
- Ryzen 7 3800X: 8-core, 16-thread, 3.9 GHz base clock and boosted to 4.5 GHz. Starting price: $ 399.
- Ryzen 7 3700X: 8-core, 16-thread, 3.6 GHz base frequency and 4.4 GHz boost. Starting price: $ 329.
- Ryzen 5 3600X: 6-core, 12-thread, 3.8GHz base clock and 4.4GHz boost. Starting price: $ 249.
- Ryzen 5 3600: 6-core, 12-thread, 3.6 GHz base frequency and 4.2 GHz boost. Starting price: $ 199
Apart from these new processors, it should be noted that AMD has introduced the new X570 chipset with PCIe 4.0. In simple terms, this means that these processors can take advantage of the higher data transfer rates. This means significant performance improvements for graphics cards, network devices, and storage devices.
The numbers above are impressive, but not that . There are higher clock speeds. So what makes the AMD Ryzen 3000 series such a thrill? Well, there’s more going on under the surface of the chip.
In addition to the numbers quoted here, AMD stated that the Zen 2 architecture on which these processors are built has 15% more instructions per clock than the Zen + architecture. The reason is how the Zen 2 architecture is designed.
Let’s briefly explain how it works. Inside the chipset are various components that all work together, including things called cIOD (short for client IO die) and CCD (short for charge coupled device). CIOD communicates with one or two CCDs.
This divides work between the components, which means potential delay (or delay) in processes. Of course, this lag is measured on a nanosecond scale, so while invisible to the user, it represents a potential throttle to achieve the fastest possible speed. However, according to AMD, this should be a moot point.
AMD has also doubled the size of its L3 cache. The cache allows the processor to retrieve the information it needs faster. These new processors use multiple caches to split this memory so that nothing gets replicated, resulting in performance gains, making the latency of the process unimportant.
Why is all this important – and why is it exciting
Now that we have covered the technical aspects of these chips, let’s focus on the reason why you are reading this article in the first place: why it is so interesting.
The first and foremost reason is competition. Intel has had a monopoly on high performance cards for years. AMD is not a bad option, but those looking for maximum performance have to pay at the price Intel installs their cards. With AMD entering the scene and at least a comparable or potential victory over Intel, that means competition and hopefully lower prices.
The second reason is that new manufacturing processes mean more innovation and improvements in computing. There has been a lot of talk over the years about quantum computing and other potential avenues of research, and for good reason: everyone could see the end of the line for our previous methods.
While 7nm transistors are problematic in their own right, their development and use in consumer products is a good sign that manufacturers are on the right track to the next phase of computing.
The third reason, and one of the most relevant for gamers, is the ability to improve graphics and increase frames per second at a partially affordable price. An advanced gaming PC isn’t always affordable, and maintaining the latest system will never be a cheap hobby, but better processors mean less power, which means less of your budget should go to your PSU.
People are in awe of new games and awesome PC builds, but behind all the flash and glamor lies the heart of computing: the processors, motherboards, and other components that make it all work. And when these components get such major improvements, well, that’s cause for excitement.