The new AMD-optimized Windows scheduler is only present in Windows 10 1903 and promises to expose gains in several types of applications. As such, we updated our test image to the latest version of Windows 10 available at the time of publication (18362.207). All of our test results come from the aforementioned operating system and include all publicly available security mitigations and the latest motherboard firmware revisions. Intel is currently impacted by Spectre, Spectre v4, Meltdown, Foreshadow, Spectre v3a, Lazy FPU, Spoiler, and MDS, while AMD is only impacted by Spectre and Spectre v4. AMD has added hardware-based mitigations for both variants of Spectre, which should reduce the performance impact, but the requisite patches for both companies have performance penalties, which also furthers the need to move forward to the latest operating system available.
We also revamped our game suite, updated to all of the latest versions of application tests, adding a few more along the way, and expanded our power testing suite. We also moved from an EVGA Nvidia GeForce 1080 FE graphics card to the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti for game testing. We use a Gigabyte GeForce RTX 2080 for synthetic tests to streamline our testing process.
Other improvements include moving from SATA SSDs to Intel's 2TB DCP4510 NVMe SSDs. It helps that the drive delivers 3,200/2,000 MB/s of sustained sequential read/write throughput, which speeds up the imaging process.
All applications, drivers, and BIOS revisions are up-to-date as of seven days prior to the publication date (excluding the Ryzen 3000 BIOS, which is two days old). Due to the significant overhaul of our testing methodology and systems, all test results in this review are not directly comparable to previous reviews, but will be comparable moving forward.
A Note on Multi-Core Enhancement (MCE)
Intel's motherboard partners have infused their boards with predefined all-core boost profiles that go by many names, such as Multi-Core Enhancement (MCE) with ASUS motherboards and Enhanced Turbo with our MSI motherboard. These features are largely referred to as MCE, but the functionality remains the same: These settings essentially apply an all-core overclock to the processor that is defined by the maximum Turbo Boost bin supported by the processor. This setting modifies the CPU's clock rate and voltage to deliver higher performance, which is basically factory-sanctioned overclocking.
MSI turns this on by default in its BIOS, similar to most of its competition. Performance, power consumption, and heat are all affected, naturally. We manually disable this feature for our stock CPU testing to best reflect Intel's specifications.
MSI MEG X570 Godlike
We're using MSI's MEG X570 Godlike as our test platform for the second- and third-gen AMD processors. Due to the compatibility matrix for the AM4 socket, we stepped back to the MSI X470 Gaming M7 AC for the Ryzen 7 1800X.
The pricey Godlike board retails for around $800, but has the 14+4+1-phase power delivery subsystem to support aggressive overclocking.
The MEG X570 Godlike sits at the top of MSI's motherboard hierarchy. It also comes with a few nifty accessories likea 10Gb “Super LAN” Ethernet card and a PCIe Gen 4 Xpander-Z M.2 expansion card. That let's you add two more M.2 drives to complement the three M.2 PCIe Gen 4 M.2 ports on the board. You also get four PCIe 4.0 x16 slots, an RGB Mystic Light Infinity II mirror over the IO shroud, and a tiny OLED screen, alongside the two-digit LCD display for error codes.
Test System and Configuration
|AMD Socket AM4 (X570)|
|AMD Ryzen 9 3900X, Ryzen 7 3700X, Ryzen 7 2700X|
|MSI MEG X570 Godlike|
|2x 8GB G.Skill Flare DDR4-3200|
|Ryzen 3000 - DDR4-3200, DDR4-3600|
|Second-gen Ryzen - DDR4-2933, DDR4-3466|
|Intel LGA 1151 (Z390)|
|Intel Core i9-9900K, i7-9700K|
|MSI MEG Z390 Godlike|
|2x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2667 & DDR4-3466|
|AMD Socket AM4 (X470)|
|AMD Ryzen 7 1800X|
|MSI X470 Gaming M7 AC|
|2x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2933|
|AMD Socket SP3 (TR4)|
|AMD Threadripper 2920X|
|MSI MEG X399 Creation|
|4x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2933|
|Intel LGA 2066|
|Intel Core i9-7920X|
|MSI X299 XPower Gaming AC|
|4x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2666|
|Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Ti|
|2TB Intel DC4510 SSD|
|EVGA Supernova 1600 T2, 1600W|
|Windows 10 Pro (1903 - All Updates)|
|Custom Loop, EKWB Supremacy EVO waterblock, Dual-720mm radiators|
|AMD Wraith Prism Stock Cooler|
|Enermax Liqtech 240 TR4 II|