It looks as though Christmas is coming early for quite a few AMD fans. Reports have surfaced around the web that some users in Russia are finding their recently-purchased AMD Ryzen 3 1200 CPUs have 8 active cores, which normally would pack only 4 cores.
The reports come just a few weeks after a number of folks received Ryzen 5 CPUs with 8 active cores with SMT for 16 threads, although the chips would actually sport 6 cores and 12 threads. The cases emerged in Russia include the Ryzen 3 CPUs, specifically the Ryzen 3 1200, which were shipped with 8 cores but with SMT disabled (thus 8 threads), instead of 4 cores and 4 threads.
The users obviously couldn’t believe their luck, and one of them even posted a YouTube video of their Ryzen 3 model, stating, “this is AMD, the cheapest AMD processor, why do I have 8 cores and 8 threads.”
The user shows that both CPU-Z and Device Manager display 8 active cores without SMT. Furthermore, the processor scores around 900 points in the Cinebench R15 multicore test, where it would normally hit around 500 points.
This is definitely a welcome surprise to fortunate Ryzen users, no less than winning a silicon lottery. Reddit also reacted to the incident, with one user calling it “AMD’s version of loot boxes.” Another put this into some sort of 2016 perspective, stating, “imagine an Intel customer buying an i5-6400 or 6500 and receiving instead an i7-6900k with HT deactivated.”
It’s unclear why exactly this is happening. You may think of it as some kind of factory mistake, but it’s implausible for the manufacturing facility to remain unaware of the number of CPU cores on a processor before it is packaged. So is this a PR stunt of some sort? We don’t know at the moment.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments below.