Ryzen Threadripper 1920X bears most of the same features touted on Threadripper 1950X. It clearly offers strong performance in threaded applications, but it also comes with higher base clock rates and more overclocking headroom than any Ryzen model we've tested. Compared to the 1950X, you save $200 in exchange for four cores and eight threads. However, you also gain higher performance in many lightly threaded productivity applications.
AMD positions Threadripper as a solution for content creators, heavy multi-taskers, and gamers who stream to services like Twitch. It also says the processors are ideal for gaming at high resolutions (a most logical pairing, given the likely specs of a desktop with an $800 CPU). The 1920X isn't intended for low-resolution gaming, particularly with lightly threaded titles. Still, we test at lower resolutions to unearth the differences between competing architectures, rather than be bound by graphics performance.
The following gaming price efficiency charts use a geometric mean of the 99th percentile frame times (a good indicator of smoothness), which we convert into an FPS measurement and plot against price. Our suite includes six games released in 2016 and five older titles that launched in 2014/2015. Threadripper’s extra cores could enable more performance in the future as software evolves to utilize them better, so we also include a chart with newer games that exploit host processing resources more thoroughly.
Ryzen Threadripper 1920X drops into the gap between Intel's $600 Core i7-7820X and $1000 i9-7900X. It offers less performance than the Intel processors in both new and older games, even after a substantial overclock. Those deltas will shrink at higher resolutions, though. The 1920X's performance is fairly comparable to the higher-end 1950X, although AMD's flagship also exhibits a relatively small lead over the 1920X in stock and overclocked configurations.
Threadripper's true value registers in more intense workloads, such as heavy multitasking while gaming. Moreover, its hefty allotment of 60 available PCIe lanes allows for plenty of expansion. Even though the X399 motherboards are quite stable, more performance-enhancing firmware is trickling out from several vendors. We've already seen much higher gaming performance from the 1950X in Game mode, which is promising. Ryzen-specific optimizations for current titles continue surfacing as well, and we expect most new games to include similar optimizations. Gaming on Ryzen should only improve with time.
Of course, we still recommend sticking with mainstream processors like Ryzen 7/5 or Core i7/i5 for the best gaming value. That recommendation applies to both Intel and AMD high-end CPUs.
Focusing more on Threadripper's core competency, the 1920X offers great performance in a few of our less demanding productivity tasks, such as the Adobe suite. Notably, the 1920X's extremely high score in Adobe Illustrator feels like an outlier, so we provide charts both with and without that test. In either case, the 1920X's frequency advantage provides more performance than Core i9-7900X in this and some other lightly threaded tasks, like decompression.
The 1920X excels in encoding and compression workloads, often matching or outstripping Intel's Core i9-7900X. The 1920X isn't as dominant in the Blender and LuxRender tests, but it delivers incredibly competitive performance, especially in light of its lower price point. It also fares well in many of our HPC and scientific workloads, highlighting its diverse capabilities.
The Threadripper processors are a solid choice for highly parallelized or simultaneous workloads. Intel still enjoys an advantage in most lightly threaded tasks. But overall, the 1920X is more competitive in these applications than the lower-frequency 1950X. Of course, switching into Game mode might enable higher performance in some situations, but we don't think professional users will tolerate constant reboots to toggle back and forth.
Intel's X299 and AMD's X399 platform costs are similar, at least by early indications. Several TR4-specific coolers have already come to market, and we expect more in the future. Surprisingly, the bundled Asetek bracket, which provides poor IHS coverage, is sufficient to attain substantial overclocks (at least by Ryzen standards). We used the bracket and a standard Thermaltake 360mm radiator to achieve a rock-solid 4.1 GHz, so cooling isn't as much of a worry here as it was with Skylake-X. Take note Intel; solder pays off.
Intel's Skylake-X models are still trickling out, so the company will have faster options soon. But they'll launch at hideous price points. Meanwhile, the 1920X slots into the $400 chasm between Core i9-7900X and i7-7820X, and it doesn't appear that Intel will have a Skylake-X processor to compete any time soon. This is a tremendous opportunity for AMD, and it's great news for anyone seeking no-compromise connectivity, competitive responsiveness in everyday apps, and superior performance per dollar in threaded software.
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