AMD Ryzen Review Out before NDA lifts; On par with Intel’s $1000 Core i7-6900K?

AMD Ryzen refresh to be called KYZEN?

A well-known French PC magazine has apparently published the AMD Ryzen review before the NDA lifts. The review is conducted by Doc Teraboule, a hardware guru from CPCHardware, short for Canard PC Hardware, revealing the real-world performance of AMD’s upcoming CPU based on their next generation Zen architecture.

Before we proceed, it’s worth mentioning that the Ryzen chip used in the testing is not mentioned by its marketing name but rather the identifying code AMD 2D3151A2M88E. The CPU is configured at an all-core turbo of 3.3GHz with a base clock speed of 3.15GHz although CEO Lisa Su has stated at the New Horizon event that the final Ryzen chip will have base clock of 3.4GHz+.

This shows that the review was conducted using an engineering sample of Ryzen. The ES runs at reduced clocked speeds, but it gives a clear idea about Ryzen performance numbers. So without further ado, let’s get to the benchmark results.

AMD Ryzen Rendering Benchmarks: 60% Performance boost over the FX-8370

The first part of the Ryzen review focuses on rendering programs, which are optimized to utilize the compute of a processor, as well as all its resources effectively. This would give performance numbers that you can expect to achieve in real-world applications.

In rendering benchmarks, the Ryzen CPU performs incredibly impressive, outperforming the hexa-core Intel Core i7-6800K. The chip is, however, nowhere close to the Core i7-6900K, which makes sense considering the latter retails for around $1000.

When compared to the previous-gen 8-core AMD FX-8370, the Ryzen CPU shows a performance improvement of up to 60% thanks to the latest 14nm FinFET architecture.

AMD Ryzen Gaming Benchmarks: Performance Close to Core i5-6500, but Wait for Final Clocks

Now, let’s move to gaming benchmarks; these represent performance of the un-optimized real-world applications which are not designed to take full advantage of multi-threaded processors. Here, CPUs with the highest clock rate usually dominate the charts – or at least that is what we’ve seen in the latest Ryzen gaming benchmarks.

The testing included seven games where the Core i7-6700K with its high turbo clock leads the benchmark. It even outperforms the most expensive Core i7-6900K.

This, coupled with the fact that the sample is clocked at a lower speed, explains why the AMD Ryzen CPU offers lower performance in games than Intel’s i5 CPU. As expected, however, Ryzen performs roughly 32% faster than the FX-8370.

AMD Ryzen Power Draw – Beats the Core i7-6900K HEDT processor

Finally, we have the Ryzen power consumption figures. The new AMD CPU consumed 93W under load during tests, which is significantly lower than that of the older FX-8370 (around 118W) and even outperforms the Core i7-6900K (96W) by a slight margin.

AMD Ryzen Review – Conclusion

The benchmark results pretty much fall in line with what AMD commented about Ryzen earlier at the New Horizon event. But, will the AMD Ryzen CPU outperform Intel’s 6900K monster? Well, the answer is no, at least on paper.

As mentioned above, the retail version of the Ryzen will be clocked at 3.4GHz+ which means we’re looking at around 8% increase in performance given the turbo clock gets a similar uplift. Based on these figures under an ideal case scenario, the Core i7-6900K will still beat the Ryzen by at least 6%.

That being said, the AMD Ryzen is no less than impressive, in fact, it promises to deliver more performance per dollar than the i7-6900K CPU. This brings us to the last and exciting part of our Ryzen discussion.

AMD Ryzen Price and Release Date Rumors

AMD has not revealed Ryzen price yet, but if earlier reports are to be believed, the new 8-core / 16-thread processor could be 2-3 times as cheap as Intel’s 6900K solution. So we hope to see it priced close to the $550 mark.

AMD is set to launch their next-generation Ryzen CPUs in Q1 2017, around February – March. Fans should expect more details on pricing and SKUs based on Zen architecture at CES 2017, which kicks off on January 5 in Las Vegas.