Too be clear, I have no issue with "erring on the side of caution" for individuals with less disposable income. Certainly, you take a performance hit, but only around 6% compared to the scores I posted. Small price to pay for piece of mind I suppose.
But, your initial post was not presented with the caveats you subsequently offered. It is labeled as "Definitive Guide to Configuring Ryzen 3900X" A definitive guide should also include configuration options for those looking to eek every last bit of performance out of their processors. Unless, to borrow your language, you are referring to a meaning of the word "definitive" that I was heretofore completely unaware of. I would offer "The Definitive Guide to Configuring Ryzen 3900X within TSMC's 7nm Spec" as a viable alternative.
I called it "Definitive" because I tried to make it simple to read, easy to comprehend, and easy to implement.
That is, you want gaming, choose "Profile 1", you want to do production work like rendering, video editing etc. which is heavily multi-threaded and does make use of the SMT (which games doesn't) then choose "Profile 2".
No fuss, no muss, no risk i.e. what I would like to refer to as "definitive".
Although I am perfectly happy to discuss my thoughts on the matter with you, I considered putting those kinds of caveats into the guide which, believe it or not, for many people is probably already tl;dr would have been counterproductive.
Also putting in those kind of caveats would have been sure to get the FanBoys out in droves to muddy the waters and would have devolved into an ad hominem flame-fest.
Thus I decided to keep it to a step by step guide to hitting an optimum that EVERYONE could follow safely, and this optimum would be safe over time for the systems concerned.
Although I did say that the AMD cooler that comes with the CPU is OK for normal usage, a better cooler would be required if the system is going to be optimised - again notice, I didn't mention which cooler, what kind of cooler because again I didn't want to get bogged down in trivial FanBoy nonsense.
In fact I went out of my way to NOT mention anything aside from the Ryzen 3900X and what can be done with it within Ryzen Master - that's it.
I bit my tongue with regard to mentioning why I chose 1.3 Volts, again to avoid FanBoy pile-ons.
I didn't mention Precision Boost, because, as far as I am aware it is applied by default; therefore I didn't consider mentioning it, because of the confusion that could have caused with regard to Precision Boost Overdrive.
I cut down the original draft expressly because I didn't want any extraneous details distracting from the guide itself.
I consider it to be definitive because the few variables in the guide are expressly defined and also the purposes where choosing "Profile 1" over "Profile 2" are also defined.
But of course you couldn't keep the snide out of your comment - which is unfortunate considering how forthcoming I have been with you.
As I said, once you explain the specific situation of the individual you configured, the choices you made make total sense. But...there is something else going on here, that I think is interesting, and deserves to be fleshed out. Maybe this thread isn't the place to do it, but it is something I'd like a little more clarity on in general.
Now you wanted a method of optimization that is easy. To achieve what I have presented in my Cinebench R20 post, the user doesn't have to do anything. If you leave all settings on "Auto" (which they default too), the processor boosts within the PPT, TDC, EDC settings AMD has defined. You would actually have to set PBO to "Enable" to use the mother board limits.
So essentially, to use the processor on defaults provides better performance, and is easier to do than setting up two Ryzen master profiles and switching between them.
Your initial argument against the boosting method was that it voids the warranty, which, as I pointed out it doesn't unless you go into the UEFI and specifically turn on PBO.
So, why go through setting up profiles, when all anyone needs to do is set the RAM profile, leave everything else on "Auto" and be done?
The real issue here, appears to me, to be the voltage used during low current workloads. AMD's FIT function allows ~1.325V on high current workloads, and around ~1.48V on low current. AMD says that is perfectly fine for silicon reliability, but it seems you don't believe them? So the question is, why not? Is there data to suggest 1.48V isn't fine even when the current is low? Or is this based on other experiences that would indicate AMD is somehow untrustworthy? This isn't a rhetorical device, I am curious as to why go through the trouble to stay in the TSMC spec (I haven't seen their paper on this), and assume the AMD spec is somehow disingenuous?
To answer your last question first I would refer you to an official AMD video that was released:
which was a lie and is on par with the load of dingo's kidneys and porkies that AMD was putting out about Vega back in the day.
So now that we have that out of the way, I would have to ask you, when you did your Cinebench runs, what else was running?
When I configuring and testing my friend's rig the following were running:
Teamviewer (to actually configure the system)
Discord (to talk to the person whose system I was configuring)
iCue (Fan and Pump control)
Motherboard manufacturer bloatware (RGB etc.)
Other stuff that he considers to be required at boot.
I didn't care about that because I was not interested in a Cinebench score to be compared to other systems but rather using Cinebench to test out the result of any manipulation I was undertaking with regard to the system. With the amount that had to be loaded just so that I could do what I set out to do and of course iCue has been shown to be a relatively big resource hog by a recent Gamers Nexus video "cleaning up" the rest of it seemed like a bit of a waste of time.
I have however run the Cinebench benchmark on my testbed system, a Ryzen 3600X system with only Ryzen Master and Cinebench running:
Ryzen Master Options
Cinebench Single Core 507, Voltage = 1.445 - 1.465 Volts
Cinebench All Core 3737, Voltage = 1.39 Volts
Cinebench Single Core 509, Voltage = 1.45 Volts
Cinebench All Core 3733, Voltage = 1.385 Volts
Cinebench Single Core 508, Voltage = 1.465 Volts
Cinebench All Core 3788, Voltage = 1.425 Volts
To have the system reliably run the Cinebench benchmark multiple times in a row I had to use a voltage of 1.3125 Volts to hold an all core of 4.2 GHz
Manual setting 4.2 GHz All-Core at 1.3125:
Cinebench Single Core 492, Voltage = 1.3125 Volts
Cinebench All Core 3730, Voltage = 1.3125 Volts
After clocking my 3600 CL16 RAM from 1800 to 1867 (RAM speed 3733) for both the RAM and the Infinity Fabric my Cinebench scores were:
Manual setting 4.2 GHz All-Core at 1.3125:
Cinebench Single Core 495, Voltage = 1.3125 Volts (not really sure why this score went up, I was expecting it to stay the same).
Cinebench All Core 3793, Voltage = 1.3125 Volts
This myth about "Higher voltage at less current" is pretty much busted in my testing for one reason - the heat that is generated. Voltage x Amps = Watts and if there were less current (Amps) then the increased voltage should not result in more heat being generated. This is just not the case.
In the all core tests there is a difference of 5.5° C to 8.5°C between using the various Ryzen Master settings and running it on manual.
In the single core tests there is a difference of 9°C to 10.5°C between using the various Ryzen Master settings and running those tests on manual.
As you can see the added voltage didn't bring much in the way of a higher Cinebench score, be it on single core or all core.
The cooler I am using is the Noctua NH-U12A. It is an excellent cooler, especially given the topology of single chiplet Ryzen 3000 series CPUs and the fan curve I have implemented ramps up quite smartly, so the increases in temps are largely mitigated by the fans accelerating to keep those rising temps in check.
"which was a lie and is on par with the load of dingo's kidneys and porkies that AMD was putting out about Vega back in the day."
I'm glad you said it. I 100% agree. The video you linked is also great stuff, as it seems to imply that the 3000 series will boost higher with better cooling and the better VRMs of the X570 series motherboards. They don't, at all.
As far as I can tell, the Ryzen 3000 series is effectively voltage bound when boosting. I'm not hitting PPT, TDC, EDC or thermal boundaries during single core boost, just F-max. If F-max is raised using the auto-overclock feature...nothing happens. So all the extra PPT, TDC, EDC headroom on the X570 does absolutely nothing.
Even in multicore boost, my 3900X is slightly EDC bound on an all core boost. If I raise it up using PBO, I hit another voltage limit with my EDC at 63% or so (155A only 15A over the 105W TDP spec). All that extra headroom is wasted on the X570 series.
The way I understood precision boost overdrive in the 2000 series, was that your processor would boost until it hit the PPT, TDC, EDC or temperature boundary. If it didn't hit any of those, it boosts to Fmax, which it will never go past (you can raise Fmax by up to 200MHz). The 3000 series clearly doesn't do this. You can be below every limit, and the processor will still stop boosting because there is also clearly a voltage limiter. My CPU will not go past 1.325V on all core boosts, and 1.485V appears to be the limit for single core. You hit that limit way before PPT, TDC or EDC limits are reached, even on my X470, so what is the point of more headroom?
And that was the FIT (silicon fitness monitoring tool) function I mentioned in my earlier post does. The problem is, AMD doesn't discuss FIT at all. I think this functionality was part of the reason for the boost clock debacle. The processors need essentially all the voltage FIT will allow to reach the boost clock. So why not mention it? A cynical person might refer to the video you linked. AMD wants to sell X570 motherboards. They spent money redeveloping the chipset, but as far as I can tell, they offer no benefit outside of using fewer PCIe lanes for devices and being PCIe 4 compliant. Other than that, they just raise your power bill. It is strange that I haven't seen much reporting on this, which is why I asked the question about trusting AMD.
My Cinebench numbers were generated after a cold boot with: GOG service, DisplayCal, Steam, Samsung Magican, and Radeon Settings loaded in the background. I do not have any bloatware from the MB manufacturer installed.
"This myth about "Higher voltage at less current" is pretty much busted in my testing for one reason - the heat that is generated. Voltage x Amps = Watts and if there were less current (Amps) then the increased voltage should not result in more heat being generated. This is just not the case."
I wonder if that is specific to the 3600X or lower core counts? In my testing, the all core load definitely has high TDC, EDC amperage in Ryzen master, but also more heat. I am using a custom loop, and all core loads boost to ~4.15GHz at 1.325V. Temps are around 70C. Lightly thread loads boost into the ~4.5GHz range at 1.485V with temps around 53C. The lower voltage, highly threaded load is definitely much hotter on my system.
"As you can see the added voltage didn't bring much in the way of a higher Cinebench score, be it on single core or all core."
That is very true. Even on the 3900X, I can obtain 529 single threaded score, and If I manually set voltage at 1.325 I can get to about 504. That is about a 5% increase, which, yeah isn't really that much. But, my point, is that is performance that is within AMD's acceptable voltage for silicon reliability. What is acceptable silicon reliability as far as AMD is concerned? They aren't saying. Will your method of overclocking lengthen product life? Most likely.
So I guess what it comes down to is, if you want to configure a system for max performance and don't need a processor to last 10 years just set defaults and be done. But, if you can deal with slightly reduced performance an a longer CPU life then yes, the method you posted is certainly viable.
The thing is that cooling the Ryzen 3000 series is a bit of a nightmare if you are using an AIO.
If you take a look at the topology of the Ryzen 3000 chips then, for the single chiplet CPUS (3600, 3600X, 3700X and 3800X), the business part of the AIO, that is where the heat exchanging fins are in the water block, is covering less than 25% of the hotspot with its cooling capacity, that is where the chiplet is located.
This is because the AIO water block is designed to have the CPU in the middle of the PCB and not offset to a corner (you can easily imagine the finned portion of your waterblock overlayed on top of the image above).
An air cooler on the other hand covers that with 50% of its cooling capacity (heatpipes).
With a two chiplet CPU (3900X and 3950X) the heat exchanging fins cover less than 50% (more like 45%) of the hotspots created by the chiplets; whereas an air cooler will have 100% coverage of those two hotspots with the heatpipes.
What makes matters worse is the fact that the common wisdom for applying TIM is to use the "Pea", "Grain of Rice" or "Line" sized blob in the middle of the IHS.
Or of course you could use the now infamous The Verge, "Ejaculate all over the damned thing" method - who knew you could build a computer with a Swiss Army knife that "Hopefully has a Philips screw driver".
If you want to totally cringe, then here is a mirror of the original video:
Here is a compilation of reactions to this abomination of a "Howto" video.
I have to warn you though that you should wear an oven mitt to mitigate the damage caused by any nuclear facepalms you may experience, or padding on the desk in case you feel the urge to violently slam your head onto it.
The problem with this is that it will not spread to the corners of the IHS which means that generally there will be quite a bit of the corners of the IHS which doesn't have any TIM facilitating the transfer of heat.
It is for this reason that I have recommended to people to spread the TIM over the entire IHS.
Excess will squidge out, but as long as your are using a good TIM (I recommend Thermal Grizzly Kryonaut or Noctua's new NT-H2) which is non-conductive and safe. Even if there is a bit too much, the expansion and contraction of the interface between the IHS and the cooler as it heats up and cools when you turn the system on or off or going from high load to low load will "pump" out the excess leaving you with a thin layer.
I'm not personally using an AIO (EKWB custom loop). But more than just the hotspots, the Ryzen 3000 series will run hotter than the 2000/1000 series regardless of the cooler used. The chiplets generating the heat are tiny (74mm^2), and there is less surface area contacting the IHS to transfer away heat from the cores.
Because of that, Ryzen 3000 CPUs can very easily hit 80C under normal operation (the limit for Grizzly Kryonaut). I probably wouldn't use Kryonaut with 3000 series processors as temps above 80C can be fairly common (NT-H2 is rated much much higher). High temps are actually more common with the single chiplet variants of Ryzen 3000 than the 3900X. In the 3900X the total package power of 144W is split between two chiplets, for 148mm^2 of surface area contacting the IHS. Heat density is 0.97W/mm^2 there, vs 1.19W/mm^2 for the 3600/3700 and 1.96W/mm^2 for the 3800X.
I have heard this a lot, namely that the temps people are experiencing with their Ryzen 3000 systems are relatively high, and I don't know whether it is my choice of motherboard, case (and the fans in it) or my choice of cooler but my temps are pretty reasonable.
I have to say first that I have had two spine operations and have spinal arthritis, so I have to have to keep my environment pretty warm; therefore my ambient temperature will almost certainly be warmer than it is for most other people.
A number of times when people have been around to visit, they have complained that the room is too warm for them - I point to the door and say, "You can leave any time you want".
Even when I have the system running on Auto Overclocking, my temps are just over 70° C
There is one, and only one, company where I would confess to being a FanBoy and that is Noctua.
I bought the very first 140mm fan they brought out (which could be mounted to 120mm) about 14 years ago, and that fan is still doing its stuff, just as quietly as the day I bought it, in the computer of my friend.
The company has never let me down, I have never had a fan that failed, or started to get loud.
And before you say it:
Noctua has opened a hotline in the US for people triggered by the colour of their fans.
The number is 1-800-248 363
Yes, that's 1-800-BITE-ME
The case I have is the Phanteks Evolv X, I replaced all the fans in the case with seven Noctua NF-U12A PWM fans and the cooler I have is the Noctua NH-U12A (which also has two NF-U12A PWM fans on it).
The NF-U12A is great as both a case fan and a static pressure fan and has a max RPM of 2000, what is however impressive is that they will go down to as low as just over 200 RPM before they stop entirely, which gives me a really good control of the environment inside my case.
The fans that come with cases are generally rubbish (although the 3 140mm fans that come with the Phanteks case aren't too bad). The thing is that you need static pressure optimised fans to push air through a radiator or a cooler stack, but it is considered normal to have ordinary case fans trying to suck air through mesh which is a lot more obstructive to airflow than any radiator.
I have seven of those fans in the case, three in the front, three in the top and one at the back of the case. The one at the back of the case can be moved and I have it moved all the way down so that it is drawing air over the back of the graphics card (I have an EVGA 1080 Ti ICX FTW3 which has a backplate that actually does act as a heatsink) and all of the fans are governed by the temp of my CPU.
The fan in the middle of the top of the case is configured to run faster than the two to the left and the right and it runs at the same profile as the rear fan.
All the fans are controlled by a Corsair Commander Pro which is a lot more granular than plugging the fans into the motherboard headers and also makes controlling the fans a lot more convenient (although the iCUE software does impose a bit of a hit on the performance).
The Ryzen system I am building is still a work in progress, so I only had it in the case for testing purposes, but otherwise it is on an open air testbench. As far as temps go, I don't take a hit either in the case or outside of the case, although understandably the fans on the cooler run faster under load in the case than they do outside of the case.
The three fans in the front of the case are all connected to one header and have their own profile.
Here is a picture of my current main machine which has an Intel i7-4790K CPU which will give you an idea of what the finished Ryzen system will look like:
The AIO is the Corsair H150i which I have not tried out yet with the Ryzen CPU.
I do not want to rip this system apart to cannibalise parts other than to transfer the Harddrives.
Typically this is what the front fan activity looks like for the system pictured above (Fan#1 are the three front fans):
This is the temps of my i7-4790K (clocked at a modest all core OC of 4.4 GHz) system when running AIDA 64 Extreme:
And these are the fan speeds running AIDA 64 Extreme:
It also has to be said that I did this benchmark test on what turned out to be one of the hottest days in UK recorded history in Summer.
The pump speed on the Corsair H150i is set to balanced.
I will be getting the AMD 3950X to replace the 3600X I currently have when it comes out, and the motherboard I will have for the completed system will be the GigaByte X570 AURUS Xtreme. Currently the motherboard I am using is the GigaByte X470 Gaming 7 WiFi (Rev. 1.1).
This is what it looks like on the testbench:
I don't have any pictures of the Ryzen system in the case, because the cable management is a complete and utter shambles. Everything was just thrown into the case haphazardly and I tested it for a day. I probably will not be putting the system together until the end of December or even January (assuming that the 3950X does come out on the 19th of November). In fact, come to think about it, I think that 12:01 AM on January the first 2020 would be the ideal time to go live with the new system.
Because my main system works just fine I can take my own sweet time configuring the Ryzen system to be as perfect as I can make it, before going gold.
At the moment I am messing around with the RAM timings to get them as tight as possible at 3733 16-16-16-31 and as you can guess, that is a bit of a PITA with regard to getting the minor timings tightened up just right.
The good news is that after tightening up the timings with the main timings being 16-16-16-16-32 at 3733 and the with the FCLK running at 1866 I have succeeded in doing multiple Cinebench R20 runs with an all core score of 3811, but the single core stays just below 500 and that was at 1.4 Volts.
I am not going to see if I can maybe tickle a bit more out of it, but I don't know how stable it will be - gotta love B-Die.
Probably by far the most important things for a ryzen system is the memory timings. Getting them lower is almost always better than having higher clock speeds. I have some of the cheapest gskill RAM with the worst timings around maybe 16 18 18 18 38 3200mhz or whatever it was. Trying to OC the RAM to 3200mhz and get it stable is beyond me. However what I found very easy to do was set the XMP profile on, check the JDEC timing info and set my RAM as low as it will let me down to 1866mhz, then looking at the JDEC timing info for 1600mhz it set my timings to those and then slowly reduce my RAM timings. I ended up having it seemingly stable at 10 11 11 11 26 1866mhz. And now my computer feels much much faster. Also simply enabling PBO precision boost overclocking in bios and double checking your PCI express bus settings are set to 3.0 or 4.0 or whatever at 16x can make a rather large difference as by default they may be set to auto or lower changing them can sometimes speed things up. you can also force your m.2 to PCI E 3.0 or 4.0 maybe so fiddling with the bios is the first step in getting and AMD system to work correctly. Otherwise it will seem very slow and unresponsive. The lower you clock your RAM and bring your timings down the faster the system goes. It seems OCing RAM to 3200mhz and beyond often doesn't provide much real world gains unless you buy crazy expensive RAM and go much much much higher clocks but I still think lowering timings may be the better bet and be far more stable!
its almost like the RAM and mainboards cant keep up with ryzen CPU's strict timings and high speeds
Actually, the number of ranks has a bigger impact on memory based performance than either clock speed or the timings. Clock speed is only really effective if you can maintain FCLK, UCLK parity. But having those extra ranks helps a bunch, even if you don't need the capacity.