Whenever a new generation of CPUs is launched, the main question everyone wants answered is exactly how well they perform in the applications they use. In the case of AMD's Ryzen, there are also a lot of questions surrounding how they compare to the processors available from Intel - especially in programs like Premiere Pro which can utilize a high number of CPU cores. For quite a while now Intel has held a dominant position in nearly every computing market, but there is a lot of hype around Ryzen due to the fact that you can get eight CPU cores for half the cost of an Intel processor of the same size.
When AMD announced that all of its Ryzen 7 CPUs would get unlocked multipliers and eight cores, we immediately imagined opportunities for enthusiasts to snag the lower-end models for less and overclock to great effect.
Our testing shows that, if you're willing to spend some time tuning, the Ryzen 7 1700X offers better overall value. After all, Ryzen 7 1700X bears many of the flagship's attributes, differing mainly in base and peak clock rates. As a result, you get satisfactory performance in heavily threaded workloads at a lower price. Though most professionals eschew overclocking in favor of stability, even at its stock settings the 1700X serves up a solid price-to-performance ratio.
The Ryzen 7 1700X boasts of a base clock speed of 3.4 GHz with a boost clock of up to 3.8 GHz (just 0.2 less than the 1800X’s 4.0 GHz). The story gets better once you push Ryzen 7 1700X up to and beyond the 1800X's default configuration. And overclocking is simple, too. We bumped the core voltage up to 1.3875V and increased the SoC voltage to obtain a rock-solid 3.9 GHz across all of the chip's cores. With the right cooler, a moderate overclock doesn’t come close to pushing Ryzen's thermal boundaries, and there is likely some additional headroom if you're willing to tolerate higher voltages. Memory tuning is still somewhat limited, but we're told that future firmware updates should make more settings available.
- Ryzen 7 Is All About High-Speed Performance and Multitasking
- AMD Ryzen Ready AM4 Chipsets and Motherboards
Overclocking is impressive with the Ryzen 7 1700X. I managed to get all eight cores running at 3.9Ghz. If you invest in a good water cooling solution, you will most likely be able to hit 4.0-4.1GHz with either the 1700 or 1700X. AMD Ryzen's gaming performance will only improve with future patches and AMD has already started working with game developers to get current and future games optimized for Ryzen.
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