AMD Ryzen TR 3960X Review

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The third-generation refresh of AMD’s Ryzen Threadripper CPU line this year is significant, bringing new technologies, approaches, and levels of performance to what were already some of the fastest high-end desktop CPUs on the market. The $1,399 (on release) Ryzen Threadripper 3960X is AMD’s “lower end” of this decidedly high-end desktop (HEDT) market segment.

This 24-core processor doesn’t have the same $1,999 price tag as its bigger brother, the Ryzen Threadripper 3970X, but it still provides a lot of performance for your money. If you’re just looking to get your work done quickly rather than really quickly, the Threadripper 3960X is a good compromise for all of your multicore multitasking needs, assuming you’re willing to jump into an entirely new platform for your next major PC build or upgrade.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X Specifications

The AMD Ryzen TR 3960X processor is nothing short of spectacular. This processor has 24 cores and 48 threads, a 3.8GHz base clock, and 128MB of L3 cache. That is comparable to, if not superior to, many dual Intel Xeon E5 V3 and V4 workstations currently in use. AMD has introduced a number of features with the new 3rd generation Threadripper that Intel still cannot match. In this review, we will compare the performance to other workstation options on the market today.

Key AMD Ryzen TR 3960X specifications: The processor has 24 cores and 48 threads, with a base clock of 3.8GHz and a turbo boost of 4.5GHz. L3 cache is 128MB in size. The CPU has a TDP of 280W. These parts have a list price of $1399 (on release) each.

AMD claims 140MB of cache, but keep in mind that this is actually L2 + L3 cache. Still, when you compare the 128MB of L3 cache here in 8x 16MB segments to top-end Intel SKUs like the Intel Xeon W-3275 28-core halo product, you get a lot more cache.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X 2

Ryzen Threadripper has used the AMD EPYC 7002 series “Rome” package as a base since the third generation, with features such as PCIe Gen4 and DDR4-3200 support. AMD’s third-generation Threadripper platform includes features like PCIe Gen4 that Intel simply cannot match, even if the Xeon W-3275 can match its core count.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X Specs

PlatformBoxed Processor
# of CPU Cores24
Base Clock3.8GHz
L3 Cache128MB
Unlocked for OverclockingYes
Max. Operating Temperature (Tjmax)95°C
Product FamilyAMD Ryzen™ Processors
# of Threads48
L1 Cache1.5MB
Default TDP280W
CPU SocketsTRX4
Launch Date11/25/2019
Product LineAMD Ryzen™ Threadripper™ Processors
Max. Boost ClockUp to 4.5GHz
L2 Cache12MB
Processor Technology for CPU CoresTSMC 7nm FinFET
Thermal Solution (PIB)Not included
*OS SupportWindows 10 – 64-Bit EditionRHEL x86 64-BitUbuntu x86 64-Bit*Operating System (OS) support will vary by manufacturer.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X Overclocking

The Gigabyte motherboard we used for our overclocking test was a little more difficult to tweak than the ASUS motherboard used in the 3970X review. We made the decision to overclock with 24 cores and the default temperatures, but not with added voltages to keep that temperature in line. If the load is heavy and prolonged, the all-core overall clock will drop to, say, 3600 MHz.

In this case, even tweaking 4000 MHz on all cores would be beneficial. We can reach 4.0 GHz with the default voltages, but 40.5 and 4.1 GHz crashed. We’ll probably need more voltage, which I don’t think is feasible right now. We used a simple Enermax 240mm LCS kit. In CB20 MT, we previously scored 13565 points and now have 13676 points. That is, at best, marginal. In its current state and with this motherboard, I’d leave things alone and avoid overclocking.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X Benchmarks & Tests

The Cinebench R15 benchmark, which provides a good overview of performance on many different types of demanding apps, is one of the best predictors of a CPU’s performance. It is a CPU-centric test that evaluates both a processor’s single-core and multicore performance. The scores that result are proprietary numbers that represent the CPU’s capabilities when rendering a complex 3D image.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X 3

It’s no surprise that HEDT processors like the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X perform well on content-creation benchmarks like Cinebench. What is surprising is the margin by which it won. Within the limits of its price difference, the 3960X outperforms any competing Intel processor, most notably the Core i9-10980XE.

And we saw some unusual results on the 7-Zip compression benchmark.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X 4

While not as fast as the Threadripper 3970X, the Threadripper 3960X is far ahead of the competition and its predecessors at this point. One caveat: To see how much the amount of RAM we had installed affected the 7-Zip results, we removed 32GB of the 64GB and saw an 18% drop in scores. Again, the truth is that 64GB of memory or more is required to get the most out of your content creation machine.

Then there’s Cinebench R20. R20 is said to be eight times more demanding than Cinebench R15, and it better represents how a chip will perform in more modern workflows that incorporate newer rendering techniques used in today’s 3D modeling shops.

As a content-creation machine, the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X shines brightly here. It’s significantly more powerful than the Core i9-10980XE and slightly less expensive than the Threadripper 3970X. The Threadripper 3970X is the ultimate content-creation machine, but if you want to save some money while still getting roughly 80% of the performance of that chip, the Threadripper 3960X will suffice.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X Conclusion

The AMD Ryzen TR 3960X performs admirably. Users in this market will undoubtedly want to see and will see top-tier performance with the new AMD chip. The story extends beyond CPU performance. Our platform reviews, such as the ASUS ROG Zenith II Extreme Review and the MSI Creator TRX40 Review, demonstrate the benefits of a large number of PCIe lanes, DIMM channels, and PCIe Gen4. Next-generation PCIe Gen4 in large quantities is something Intel simply cannot provide today, which is critical if you want to use Gen4 storage and networking.

AMD Ryzen TR 3960X 5

Overall, we believe that the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X strikes an excellent balance between providing a large number of cores and excellent single-core and real-world performance at a reasonable price.

Is AMD Ryzen TR 3960X worth it?

A high-end desktop processor having 24 cores and 48 threads is the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3960X. How much it’s “worth it” will depend on your needs, budget, and use case. Here are some things to think about:

Multithreaded Performance: With its outstanding multithreaded performance, the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X is a great choice for professional workloads that require a high core count, like video editing, content production, 3D rendering, and other similar applications.

Budget: The AMD Ryzen TR 3960X and other Threadripper processors are premium CPUs, and as such, their prices reflect this. Think about your spending plan and whether the extra cores and improved performance are worth the money for your particular needs.

Gaming: Although the Threadripper 3960X is capable of handling both gaming and other duties, if gaming is your main priority, it might not be the most economical option. High clock speeds and potent single-threaded performance, which are available in other processors at a lower price range, are frequently more advantageous for gaming.

Newer Generations: It’s possible that newer CPU generations have been launched after my last update. Examine the cost and availability of more recent models to determine whether they provide better features or performance within your price range.

Workload: Take into account the particular programs and jobs you’ll be using. The higher core count of Threadripper CPUs may not be completely utilized by some software, thus it’s critical to match the CPU to your workload.

Availability: Due to technological advancements, older models, such as the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X, may become less common. Look for more recent solutions that offer a decent trade-off between price and functionality.

Is AMD Ryzen TR 3960X good for gaming?

A top-tier desktop CPU for professional workloads and content creation jobs is the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3960X. With 24 cores and 48 threads, it can handle gaming without a doubt, but if gaming is your main priority, it might not be the most economical option. Here are some things to think about:

High Core Count: Most games cannot fully exploit the Threadripper 3960X’s 24 cores and 48 threads. Numerous games are designed to run at higher clock speeds but with fewer cores. Processors with fewer cores but faster clock speeds may perform better in gaming scenarios.

Cost: Threadripper processors, such as the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X, are more expensive than ordinary CPUs because they are premium chips. A high-end processor from AMD’s Ryzen 7 or Ryzen 9 series can offer better value if gaming is your main use case.

GPU Matters More: When it comes to gaming, the graphics card (GPU) frequently affects performance more so than the CPU. To maximize the performance of the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X, ensure sure it is paired with a potent GPU.

Gaming-Optimized Alternatives: Processors with fewer cores but higher clock speeds, such as the Ryzen 9 5950X or Intel Core i9-11900K, may provide greater value and comparable gaming performance at a lower price point for setups that are primarily focused on gaming.

The AMD Ryzen TR 3960X is made for workloads that can benefit from its large number of cores, but it can certainly handle demanding applications like gaming. If gaming is your main priority, you may want to look for a processor that strikes a compromise between inexpensive cost and potent single-threaded performance. To make sure you have access to the most recent data on performance and cost, always look for updated benchmarks and reviews.

Can you overclock AMD Ryzen TR 3960X?

Like many other Ryzen processors, the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X is capable of being overclocked. Overclocking is the process of altering several factors, like voltages and clock speeds, to make the processor function better than it does at stock.

AMD’s official overclocking tool, the AMD Ryzen Master program, can be used to overclock the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X. To maximize performance, Ryzen Master offers an intuitive interface for modifying voltages, clock rates, and other settings.

The following are general procedures for Ryzen Master overclocking:

Download Ryzen Master: The official AMD website is where you can get Ryzen Master.

Install Ryzen Master: To install the Ryzen Master program on your computer, adhere to the installation guidelines.

Start Ryzen Master: To utilize the overclocking options, open the Ryzen Master application.

Modify Settings: Ryzen Master gives you the ability to modify voltage, core clock speed, and other settings. Gradually adjust while keeping an eye on the system’s temps and stability.

Stress Testing: To make sure your system is stable after making changes, you must stress test it. For stress testing, programs such as Prime95 or AIDA64 can be utilized. Make sure the temperature stays within safe bounds by keeping an eye on it.

Fine-Tune: The process of overclocking is iterative. Adjusting your settings may be necessary to achieve the best possible balance between stability and performance.

Remember that there are certain risks associated with overclocking, such as increased heat generation and possible instability. It’s critical to keep an eye on temperatures, make sure the system is stable, and understand the cooling solution’s limitations. Furthermore, overclocking may cause your warranty to lapse, so be careful to know what that means for your particular processor.

What temperature should an AMD Ryzen TR 3960X run at?

The official AMD website states that the maximum operating temperature of the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X is 95°C. On, several users claim that the optimal temperature range for the processor is between 40 and 50°C when it is operating at maximum speed.

I came over a post on AMD Community 3 where a user stated that after 5 to 8 minutes of rendering, the CPU temperature might rise to 92–94 degrees when Blender is operating at maximum load, which is approximately 4466MHz. While the GPU doesn’t appear to achieve these values, the temperature tends to rise more quickly during GPU renderings.

Please be aware that the workload, the cooling solution being used, and other variables can all affect the processor’s temperature. In order to lessen the strain on the processor, you might want to think about changing your system settings or updating your cooling solution if you are experiencing excessive temperatures.

How much power does AMD Ryzen TR 3960X draw?

The AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3960X is a high-end desktop processor whose Thermal Design Power (TDP) indicates how much power it uses. The greatest amount of heat that the cooling system is anticipated to dissipate under typical operating circumstances is measured by TDP.

280 watts is the standard TDP for the AMD Ryzen TR 3960X. This suggests that, even with typical workloads, the processor’s cooling solution should be able to dissipate up to 280 watts of heat in order to maintain ideal operating temperatures.

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