AMD was under criticism post the observations and combination of user-submitted reports compiled by Der8auer about AMD’s third-generation Ryzen processors which were not reaching its respective SKU’s clock speeds. While AMD did assure they will release an update, the question was when.
Didn’t take that long! And that’s appreciated!
Recently, AMD announced that it released the 1003ABBA AGESA code to its motherboard partners. According to reports, this will enable manufacturers to fix the issue where hopefully it would reach the advertised clock speeds. Based on the submission numbers and the number of users per surveyed reviews indicates that the number was not small. This was the case even with the tools AMD recommended to Der8auer.
The chipmaker claimed its 3rd gen CPUs did not reach the advertised clock speeds were due to its longevity reasons. But they also said the new updates were designed to provide better CPU stability. Additionally, the company will be releasing a new monitoring SDK (software developing kit) for its Ryzen users. The SDK Preview is available in AMD Ryzen Master Utility but the final will be rolled out on the September 30th. Some of the tools are as follows:
- Current Operating Temperature: Reports the average temperature of the CPU cores over a short sample period. By design, this metric filters transient spikes that can skew temperature reporting.
- Peak Core(s) Voltage (PCV): Reports the Voltage Identification (VID) requested by the CPU package of the motherboard voltage regulators. This voltage is set to service the needs of the cores under active load but isn’t necessarily the final voltage experienced by all of the CPU cores.
- Average Core Voltage (ACV): Reports the average voltages experienced by all processor cores over a short sample period, factoring in active power management, sleep states, Vdroop, and idle time.
- EDC (A), TDC (A), PPT (W): The current and power limits for your motherboard VRMs and processor socket.
- Peak Speed: The maximum frequency of the fastest core during the sample period.
- Effective Frequency: The frequency of the processor cores after factoring in time spent in sleep states (e.g. cc6 core sleep or pc6 package sleep). Example: One processor core is running at 4GHz while awake, but in cc6 core sleep for 50% of the sample period. The effective frequency of this core would be 2GHz. This value can give you a feel for how often the cores are using aggressive power management capabilities that aren’t immediately obvious (e.g. clock or voltage changes).
- Various voltages and clocks, including SoC voltage, DRAM voltage, fabric clock, memory clock, etc.
According to AMD’s internal testing, the AGESA updates increases approximately 25-50MHz on boost clock on various workloads. This testing, however, was on an AMD’s in-house Reference motherboard. The tests were done with different Ryzen 3rd gen CPUs in a combination of its stock Wraith CPU coolers and Noctua NH-D15S.
According to Gamers Nexus, the difference between ABB and ABBA is very mixed enough for Steve to say if the difference is significant:
My personal opinion…
If AMD was genuinely concerned about longevity issues, it should have been equally concerned about lits labelled boost clock speeds. The new AGESA rollout that apparently fixes the issue makes such claims contradictory. These claims shouldn’t be made if the end product cannot meet the specifications. This applies to every chipmaker and product.
Hopefully, the respective motherboard manufacturers will roll out the new updates as soon as possible. While this doesn’t break an end-users decision to buy the CPU, it is not a good habit to develop. At the end of the day, the PC component retail market is a community-driven market. And therefore it needs to draw a thicker line to use marketing for fudging accuracy.
Motherboard Manufacturers Update
In the end, AMD resolved the issue hopefully. Gigabyte/ AORUS motherboards have rolled out its updates a few days ago so we should see user reports supporting the changes. ASUS did not release any BIOS update yet, at least based on the BIOS logs for its Strix X570-E Gaming motherboard. MSI, who had to release the newer B450 and X470 motherboards just to have a standard 256mbit BIOS needed to work with Ryzen 3rd generation CPUs, did not release a BIOS with the AGESA update at the time of writing.
These are some of the well-known models sold via Amazon in their respective countries:
— Hardware BBQ (@HardwareBBQ) September 13, 2019