AMD Ryzen 7 2700 Review: The Non-X Factor

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Overclocking & Test Setup


Like the Ryzen 7 2700X, we overclocked AMD's 2700 to 4.2 GHz. While the lower-end chip did need a bit more voltage to get there, our 1.4V Vcore, 1.2V SoC, and Level four Loadline Calibration (LLC) settings are still within the safe zone for AMD's processors. They just make the CPU operate a little warmer than it would otherwise. Top the 2700 with a capable closed-loop watercooler and thermals won't be an issue. If you're stuck with AMD's bundled heat sink and fan, though, expect Ryzen 7 2700 to fall short of its best possible overclock. Our sample topped out at 4.05 GHz as it exceeded 95°C.

We did match the 2700X's overclocked memory settings (DDR4-3466 at 14-14-14-34 timings) with minimal effort. That's particularly encouraging since memory tuning dramatically improves Ryzen's gaming performance.

Precision Boost Overdrive

AMD isn't giving us much detail about its Precision Boost Overdrive feature, though we know it increases maximum boost voltage and boost duration. However, we also know that Precision Boost Overdrive is an AMD-sanctioned feature. Because this is a standard capability for Ryzen 2000-series processors, we leave it enabled. Conversely, we disable the Multi-Core Enhancement BIOS option found in many Intel-based motherboards because it overclocks beyond the company's specifications.

MSI X470 Gaming M7 AC

Our MSI X470 Gaming M7 AC has a PCI Express 3.0 slot with a x16 link, a slot with a x8 connection, and another PCI Express 2.0 slot with a four-lane link for graphics cards. Its four RAM slots support DDR4-2933 and scale quite a bit higher through overclocking.

The motherboard also provides two M.2 slots with PCIe connectivity. The I/O panel has a USB 3.1 Type C connector. The USB 3.1 and USB 3.1 Gen 2 ports support fast charging for smartphones and tablets. If RGB is your thing, MSI has you covered. The integrated RGB Mystic lighting allows customizable effects with several software-controlled zones.

Comparison Products

Test Systems

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Test System & Configuration
HardwareAMD Socket AM4 (400-Series)AMD Ryzen 7 2700, Ryzen 7 2700X, Ryzen 5 2600XMSI X470 Gaming M7 AC2x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2933, DDR4-3466Intel LGA 1151 (Z370):Intel Core i7-8700K, i5-8600K, Core i5-8400MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC2x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2400, DDR4-2667, DDR4-3466AMD Socket AM4 (300-Series)AMD Ryzen 7 1800X, 1700, Ryzen 5 1600XMSI X370 Xpower Gaming Titanium2x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2667, DDR4-3200All EVGA GeForce GTX 1080 FE 1TB Samsung PM863 SilverStone ST1500-TI, 1500W Windows 10 Creators Update Version 1703 - All Spectre and Meltdown mitigations
CoolingU.S.Corsair H115i


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Paul Alcorn
Managing Editor: News and Emerging Tech

Paul Alcorn is the Managing Editor: News and Emerging Tech for Tom's Hardware US. He also writes news and reviews on CPUs, storage, and enterprise hardware.

  • rantoc
    @1440p or 4k the gaming difference wont be noticeable as the gpu starts to become the bottleneck. Game with an 2700x on an 3440x1440 100hz display (1080ti) and couldn't be happier as it also have the benefits of chewing through threaded workloads like a champ and that at a good price. So good mid-high res gaming with very good threaded performance, hard to beat really.
  • philipemaciel
    I am going to buy the 2700.

    The 65W TDP is low enough for passive cooling. That it is cheaper than the 2700X is just the icing on the cake.

    For *my* needs, it is perfect. I am more than happy to lose a little performance and have the TDP drop 40W.
  • mitch074
    I think @philipemaciel hit it right on the head: the 2700 is a much better choice if you're looking for a powerful CPU that sips power (65W is damn impressive, and that's before taking into account the possibilities offered by undervolting), as this puts it in a spot both the 2700X and the 2600X can't touch. For pure gaming, the 2600X is a much more sensible choice, and if you need absolute power without the need to tinker with it, the 2700X is perfect (an 8-core CPU that overclocks itself, it's a dream come true).
    Now though, it would have been better if AMD had sold those without a cooler for $20 less - the price gap with 2700X would have made it much more enticing, and overclockers could have pushed the hell out of it with watercooling etc.
  • redgarl
    You rated that 6/10? Are you mad? Also, the stock cooler is not sufficient for Overclocking? Do you realize that this is the case for all marketed CPUs?

  • theyeti87
    20974031 said:
    I am going to buy the 2700.

    The 65W TDP is low enough for passive cooling. That it is cheaper than the 2700X is just the icing on the cake.

    For *my* needs, it is perfect. I am more than happy to lose a little performance and have the TDP drop 40W.

    Your reasoning is the same logic I used in selecting my 1700 non-X. I am attracted to efficient power.
  • Combat_Medic
    "...our 4.0V Vcore, 1.2V SoC"

    That's a LOT of vcore right there!
  • PaulAlcorn
    20974322 said:
    "...our 4.0V Vcore, 1.2V SoC"

    That's a LOT of vcore right there!

    Thanks, good eye! fixed. (1.4V)
    I would expect the 2700 to have longevity.

    NeoHome economics 101: Buy quality parts that/and don't push the hardware limits.
    Main System(5-7 years) becomes Utility System(5+ years)

    Unless of course you burn out the mainsystem in 3-4 years *factory overclocks tend to do this too). ;)
  • Garrek99
    The point of this processor is power efficiency not performance.
    Where are the performance per Watt or Temp charts?
  • ElectrO_90
    You do realise, the whole point is to sell the 2700 for $30 so they can sell the main 2700x, because people don't mind spending 10% more, unless they are really restricted for power/heat.