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Ryzen Threadripper 2 (2990WX and 2950X) Review: AMD Unleashes 32 Cores

Editor's Choice

Workstation - Graphics

Anyone interested in using a Threadripper processor in a workstation should carefully consider the applications they're running. Over and over, we're reminded that not all tasks can be effectively parallelized, and many workloads are only optimized for four to eight cores.

AutoCAD is a prime example. If you work in 2D draft mode, it's rare to see more than two cores utilized. There, IPC throughput wins over core count. Ryzen Threadripper 2950X can at least push out in front of Ryzen 7 2700X. However, Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX looks out of place, given a much higher price tag.

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Our results were similar in the Cinebench graphics benchmark, which combines host processing and 3D workloads. Faced with a slightly more demanding benchmark, Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX with PBO enabled hit a high enough clock rate to match Threadripper 2950X.

In the end, though, Intel's line-up fared far better.

SolidWorks consists of several components and packages that utilize host processing resources differently. In the graphics-bound composite, which is not optimized for threading, AMD's portfolio was generally routed.

AMD's extra cores were a little more effective in the Creo graphics composite test. But again, Intel dominated absolutely.

Catia is similar to the Cinebench graphics test, so our results weren't particularly surprising. Ryzen Threadripper 2950X took a wafer-thin lead over the Ryzen 7 2700X, demonstrating that its extra cores don't trip over themselves in lightly-threaded workloads.

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This Blender workload doesn't utilize lots of execution cores, but at least it put AMD's newest Threadripper CPUs ahead of Ryzen 7 2700X.


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Paul Alcorn

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