After an unassuming 2021 where Intel managed to overtake AMD with its Alder Lake 12th gen Core CPUs, 2022 was the year where AMD came firing back. The company teased the Ryzen 7000 series earlier this year, coming with a slew of improvements. Now, the new CPU range has been officially unveiled.
The Ryzen 7000 series is the long-awaited successor to the Ryzen 5000 range introduced in late 2020. And it comes absolutely packed with improvements. The new chips debut the new AM5 socket, representing the first socket change since 2016 when AM4 was introduced one year before the launch of the very first Ryzen chips.
The new chips switch from the PGA layout used by AMD for decades and make the switch to LGA, where pins are located on the motherboard’s socket rather than on the CPU. This allows for increased contact point density, fitting 1,718 contact points over the same area as AM4, which had 1,331. AMD says that it plans to support this socket beyond the year 2025, so it remains to be seen if it’ll last as long as AM4 did.
The Ryzen 7000 series of chips is based on the new Zen 4 architecture, fabricated on a 5nm process. Zen 4 allows for a massive increase in clock speed, with the highest-end Ryzen 9 7950X reaching an impressive 5.7 GHz — 800 MHz more than the Ryzen 9 5950X and 200 MHz more than Intel’s crème-de-la-crème, the Core i9-12900KS. There’s also a 13% improvement in instructions-per-cycle (IPC). Combining both IPC and clock speed improvements, the new Ryzen 7000 chips have a 29% improvement in single-core performance.
AMD is also claiming a 45% improvement in some threaded workloads, which, if true, is an amazing generational improvement. On that note, AM5 should support the same coolers as AM4, but you probably want to get a better one anyway — the Ryzen 5 will come with a 105W TDP, while Ryzen 7 and 9 chips will have an infernal 170W TDP. They also have PCI Express Gen 5 support, as well as DDR5 memory. There’s no DDR4 support at all here unlike with Intel’s most recent chips, so you’ll need to get new memory.
Was it worth it to leave the new Ryzens an extra year in the oven? Only time, and real-life reviews, will tell if this is enough to dust Intel. The new chips will go on sale on September 27th. The 6-core, 12-thread Ryzen 5 7600X will be available for $300, and the 8-core, 16-thread Ryzen 7 7700X will cost $400. Going into the high-end, the 12-core, 24-thread Ryzen 9 7900X will cost $550, and the 16-core, 32-thread Ryzen 9 7950X will cost $700. It’s basically the same prices as the previous generation, which is a relief.