AMD Ryzen 7 3800X Review

Written by Antony Leather

September 10, 2019 | 17:30

Tags: #3rd-gen-ryzen #7nm #cpu #ryzen #x570 #zen-2

Companies: #amd

Manufacturer: AMD

UK price (as reviewed): £379.99 (inc. VAT)

US price (as reviewed): $399.99 (exc. tax)

We've nearly completed our 3rd Gen Ryzen review marathon, having covered four CPUs already, including AMD's other 8c/16t monster, the Ryzen 7 3700X. There's a lot to consider when it comes to choosing the right model, and at this price there's also Intel to consider, as the Core i7-9700K is now available for less than £400 too. Today, it's all about AMD's fastest 8c/16t model, the Ryzen 7 3800X, where it fits into the product stack, whether it's worth the extra cash over the Ryzen 7 3700X, and whether you should buy it over the other various attractive options that landed on 7th July.

AMD includes the Wraith Prism RGB cooler with this CPU, but we'd suggest adding a decent air-cooler as a minimum, even if you're not planning to overclock. Boosting behaviour is absolutely affected by the cooler you put on top of a Ryzen CPU, and we are dealing with a 105W TDP part here, not 65W out of the box like the slower Ryzen 7 3700X.

Model Cores/Threads Base Freq Boost Freq Total Cache TDP (Watts) Included cooler SEP (USD) Availability
Ryzen 9 3950X 16/32 3.5GHz 4.7GHz 72MB 105W Wraith Prism RGB $749 September
Ryzen 9 3900X 12/24 3.8GHz 4.6GHz 70MB 105W Wraith Prism RGB $499 July 7, 2019
Ryzen 7 3800X 8/16 3.9GHz 4.5GHz 36MB 105W Wraith Prism RGB $399 July 7, 2019
Ryzen 7 3700X 8/16 3.6GHz 4.4GHz 36MB 65W Wraith Prism RGB $329 July 7, 2019
Ryzen 5 3600X 6/12 3.8GHz 4.4GHz 35MB 95W Wraith Spire $249 July 7, 2019
Ryzen 5 3600 6/12 3.6GHz 4.2GHz 35MB 65W Wraith Stealth $199 July 7, 2019

The differences between the two 8c/16t parts are mostly small, though, with both sporting the same 32MB L3 cache and 4MB L2 cache, which is 1MB more than the 6c/12t 3rd Gen Ryzen models due to two cores being disabled, whereas here all cores on both Core Complexes are active, providing access to 25 percent more L2 cache as a result (512KB per core). The higher frequencies - enabled mostly by the higher TDP - are the main selling points here, though, and with somewhat limited overclocking headroom so far on 3rd Gen Ryzen, sticking to stock speed can often be the best option if you want the best gaming performance, as you get the full benefit of those boost frequencies.  

We saw a 4GHz all-core boost with the Ryzen 7 3700X, and this rises to 4.2GHz with the Ryzen 7 3800X, which also enjoys a 100MHz peak boost frequency advantage over not just the Ryzen 7 3700X but also the Ryzen 5 3600X. As such, if you're gunning for high lightly-threaded performance and don't intend to overclock, it's another feather in the Ryzen 7 3800X's cap. The next step up in price is a hefty one to the Ryzen 9 3900X, which currently holds the speed record at a peak boost of 4.6GHz until the Ryzen 9 3950X lands later this month.


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