The implementation of AMD's new V-Cache 3D technology, which greatly expands the total L3 cache available on a CPU, comes on the new AM5 platform after first introducing it last year with the Ryzen 7 5800X3D processor.
AMD has just released 2 new processors with the latest generation Ryzen 7000 chip integrating additional cache: the Ryzen 9 7950X3D (16C / 32T) and the Ryzen 9 7900X3D (12C / 24T). Both chips build on their X-series predecessors by adding another 64 MB of L3 cache, for a total of 128 MB.
AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D
The AMD Ryzen 9 7950X3D is the first 16-core CPU to feature 3D V-Cache technology. The chip incorporates a total of 32 threads, a total of 144 MB cache (64 MB CCD, 64 MB V-Cache + 16 MB L2) and a TDP of 120W. As for clocks, the chip has a base clock of 4.2 GHz, 300 MHz less than the standard 7950X, but the boost clock is 5.7 GHz.
AMD uses an asymmetric chiplet design, where one of the CCDs is a regular Zen 4 CCD and the other is a Zen 4 CCD with 64 MB of V-Cache. This means that the Ryzen 9 7950X3D has a CCD with 96 MB of L3 cache, while the second CCD still has the usual 32 MB available.
The two CCDs are not the same when it comes to cache, but also when it comes to clock peaks. Adding a V-Cache die to a CCD limits the maximum clock speeds it can reach, limiting them to around 5.25GHz. Therefore, compared to the maximum clock speed of 5.7GHz of a simple Zen 4 CCD (such as the one used in the 7950X models), the addition of V-Cache forces the maximum frequency reduction of about 8%.
AMD said that the presence of a CCD with V-Cache and a standard CCD offers the best balance to maximize performance in both gaming workloads and general computing tasks with high workloads. Applications and games that can benefit from a larger pool of L3 cache can be loaded onto the CCD with V-Cache, while everything else is loaded onto the standard CCD (and possibly the second CCD).
The Ryzen 9 7950X3D does not have the multiplier unlocked; This means that manual overclocking of cores is disabled.
AMD has set the price of the Ryzen 9 7950X3D at what was the original MSRP of the Ryzen 9 7950X: $699.
AMD Ryzen 9 7900X3D
The second chip is the AMD Ryzen 9 7900X3D which will feature 12 cores and 24 threads. This is also a 2-CCD configuration, with one CCD configured with the V-Cache and the second without. The chip has a total of 140 MB cache (64 MB CCD, 64 MB V-Cache + 12 MB L2). Clocks are rated at 4.4 GHz baseline, 200 MHz less than the Non-3D SKU, while the boost clock remains unchanged at 5.6 GHz. The CPU has a TDP of 120W.
AMD has confirmed that the 7900X3D has 6 active cores in each chiplet. This means that there are no non-uniform configurations such as 8 cores in the 3D V-Cache chiplet and 4 cores in the regular CCD.
In this case the sale price is starting at $599.
Operating system optimizations
AMD Ryzen 7000 processors with AMD 3D V-Cache technology require AMD Chipset Driver 5.02.16.347 (or newer) for optimal system performance and stability. Using an older version of this driver will not optimize the performance of X3D / Ryzen 9 games. Once the chipset driver is installed, you need to restart the system.
Make sure Windows Game Mode is enabled: Game Mode is enabled by default on your PC.
Make sure the Xbox Game Bar application is installed and updated: this application needs to be updated to the latest version (5.823.1271.0 at the time of writing).
The first boot of the system after assembling the platform can take 2–3 minutes. During this time, the system may appear unresponsive. This period is used to perform memory training at first boot. After this initial memory tuning, boot times will be reduced to the typical 5–10 seconds you're used to with AMD Socket AM4. Additional BIOS versions will reduce this first boot time.
In tests performed on 12 games by the YouTube channel “Hardware Unboxed”, the 7950X3D is on average 9% faster than the standard 7950X, while performance compared to the Intel i9-13900KS is practically in line, albeit with significantly higher energy efficiency.
In addition, simulations have also been made on the possible performance of the Ryzen 7 7800X3D (which will be released in April) by disabling the CCD without 3D cache, and the results show without doubt how it could become the flagship processor as far as gaming is concerned.
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