In mid-May 2022, AMD officially presented its new desktop processors based on Zen 4, but continued to keep almost all important data under wraps. On AMD's Financial Analyst Day on June 9, 2022, the manufacturer followed suit and published a lot of technical data, including the IPC (instructions per cycle) increase, which according to AMD should be around 8 to 10 percent. AMD had already reported in mid-May that the clock frequencies of the AMD Zen 4 CPUs will increase significantly.
Clock frequencies of up to 5.5 GHz are realistic for the flagship, which is probably called AMD Ryzen 9 7950X. Based on the data that is now available, the benchmark values for Cinebench R23 and Geekbench 5 can be calculated relatively easily, since they scale fairly precisely with the IPC and the clock frequency. In Geekbench 5, the now faster main memory should also provide an additional, small improvement over the previous generation.
The change in manufacturing technology from 7 nm to 5 nm should also ensure even greater efficiency: AMD claims of more than 25 percent (performance per watt). Additional improvements include the move from DDR4 memory to DDR5 memory and support for the new PCIe 5.0 interface.
The new AM5 socket should also allow significantly more power: AMD increased the allowed TDP to up to 170 watts, and up to 230 watts are even possible for a short time (PPT). However, it is doubtful that the Zen 4 processors, which will be released at the end of the year, will exhaust these limits. It is more likely that AMD may later be able to offer more than 16 CPU cores on the AM5 socket.
Exact naming of the Zen 4 processors still secret
AMD has not yet announced the actual names of the Zen 4 processors expected by the end of 2022, but it is certain that they belong to the AMD Ryzen 7000 series. If AMD keeps its structure when naming the processors, at least the following 4 processors could be presented at launch:
AMD Ryzen 5 7600X (6 cores, 12 threads)
AMD Ryzen 7 7800X (8 cores, 16 threads)
AMD Ryzen 9 7900X (12 cores, 24 threads)
AMD Ryzen 9 7950X (16 cores, 32 threads)
Development of the AMD Zen desktop processors
Technical specifications of AMD Ryzen 9 7950X and AMD Ryzen 9 5950X
AMD Ryzen 9 7950X
AMD Ryzen 9 5950X
CPU cores / threads
4.5 GHz *
Max. memory amount
PCIe 5.0 x20
PCIe 4.0 x20
5 nm (TSMC)
7 nm (TSMC)
* Estimated values based on AMD's performance forecast
AMD Ryzen 7000 processors bundled with an RDNA2 iGPU
Unlike the competitor Intel, the normal AMD Ryzen desktop processors did not have an iGPU installed from the start. The thought was probably that a dedicated graphics card would be built into a fast desktop processor anyway. With the 5th generation of AMD Ryzen processors, AMD wants to change this structure and, like the competition, is now also installing an integrated graphics solution.
There is not much information about the new iGPUs until now, but the rumors speak of only 2-4 graphics cores. That would also make sense, because otherwise the iGPU would take up too much space in the CPU and the Intel iGPUs in the desktop processors are also weak in terms of performance. The iGPU only has the task of displaying an image and playing videos. The RDNA2-iGPU should undoubtedly be able to decode alle modern video codes, probably including the new AV1 codec.
Performance projection of the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X in Cinebench 23
AMD does not give any exact benchmark results for the expected performance, but in the multi-core run of Cinebench 23 it mentions an improvement of more than 35% compared to the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X. The power consumption should increase significantly in multi-core operation, because even if the overall efficiency is better, you can assume a plus in consumption with a 35% increase in performance. The new AM5 socket also provides this.
AMD specifies the increase in performance (IPC) as approx. 8-10 percent, so we assume the middle in our calculation, i.e. 9 percent. We now subtract this from the 35 percent AMD mentions in their press release, which means that the average clock rate in Cinebench 23 (multi-core) should be 26 percent higher than that of the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X. Under optimal circumstances, the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X can maintain a stable multi-core clock of approx. 4.2 GHz.
If you add 24 percent to the 4.2 GHz of the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X (2 percent of the increase in performance should come from the memory, see below), you end up with pretty much exactly 5.2 GHz clock frequency (multi-core) for the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X.
The main memory and the cache can be almost completely ignored in Cinebench R23, the difference between DDR4-3600 (AMD Ryzen 9 5950X) and DDR5-5200 (AMD Ryzen 9 7950X) should be a maximum of 1-2 percentage points in the end result. This should already be included in AMD's IPC calculation. By the way, AMD mentions all relevant information of the test systems in the footnotes of its press kit.
Regarding the performance assessment, it should be said that AMD has not cheated with the results in the past, with the AMD Ryzen 3000 and AMD Ryzen 5000 series the values were realistic and could later be confirmed by independent tests.
Our final calculation looks like this:
Single-core performance vs. AMD Ryzen 9 5950X:
1.08 [IPC] x (5.5 [GHz] / 4.9 [GHz]) = 1.21 = +21% single core performance
Performance of the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X in Cinebench 23
AMD states a performance increase of more than 15 percent (single-core performance) and a performance increase of more than 35 percent in Cinebench R23 multi-core (AMD Ryzen 9 5950X vs AMD Ryzen 9 7950X). According to our calculation, the likely top model in the form of the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X could even be significantly faster in single-core benchmarks.
In our calculation we get a benchmark result of approx. 1989 points (single core) and approx. 38293 points (multi-core) for the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X. That's decent and a lot more than what you would have expected from AMD after their presentation in May 2022.
From a marketing point of view, it was also bad at best, because AMD had only pointed out the increase in performance in single-core operation. Presumably also because the final clock frequencies of the processors have not yet been determined or have not yet been determined.
Nevertheless, that was worded very unhappily and immediately triggered a small shitstorm or astonishment on the internet about the obviously (too small) improvement of Zen 4 vs Zen 3. This was crowned by incorrect TDP values that AMD had published for the AM5 socket, where AMD mixed up TDP and PPT.
Performance Comparison AMD Ryzen 9 7950X vs Intel Core i9-12900KS
Now that we know the approximate performance of the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X, we can of course compare it to other processors. First a comparison against the Intel Core i9-12900KS, the current top model from Intel in the desktop area. It should be mentioned that Intel also wants to release its successor generation (Intel Core i 13th Gen, Raptor Lake) by the end of 2022.
Performance Comparison AMD Ryzen 9 7950X vs Apple M1 Ultra
And when comparing it with Apple's current top model, the Apple M1 Ultra, the same applies: here, too,. The successor (most likely Apple M2 Ultra) will follow relatively soon. It is not yet known whether this will be the case by the end of 2022 or only at the beginning of 2023.
As soon as AMD confirms the Zen 4 CPU names that will be launched first, you will of course find the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X and all other expected Zen 4 processors in our CPU comparison, so that you can compare the new AMD Zen 4 processors with any other processors yourself.
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