Is the Ryzen 7 7800X3D the fastest gaming CPU?
Updated: March 3, 2023 1:05 PM
The Ryzen 7 7800X3D released on April 6, 2023 will be the next addition to the Ryzen 7 lineup. This processor features AMD’s powerful 3D V-cache technology, known to improve gaming performance by incredible margins. So we have to ask: Is the Ryzen 7 7800X3D the fastest gaming CPU?
Now read: The best CPU for gaming 2023.
The Ryzen 7 7800X3D
Here are the specifications of the upcoming Ryzen 7 processor.
- Core Count: 8 (Multithreading enabled)
- Number of threads: 16
- Boost Clock: 5GHz
- L2 cache: 8 MB – 1 MB per core
- L3 cache: 96 MB – shared
- TDP: 120 watts
- iGPU: Radeon Graphics
- Socket: AM5
At first glance, they look like pretty standard high-end specs. That is until you notice the whopping 96MB of L3 cache this processor has.
The cache is high-speed memory located on the CPU die, right next to the cores. More cache allows the cores to keep important data close by, saving them from having to access the much slower DRAM.
To put 96MB into perspective, Intel’s current flagship, the Core i9-13900KS, has a 32MB L3 cache.
The “non-3D” equivalent of the 7800X3D, the Ryzen 7 7700X, also has a 32MB L3 cache, which means that the 3D V-cache technology employed here by AMD allows this processor to have three times its standard cache size.
What is the fastest gaming CPU?
Currently the fastest gaming desktop processor is the Ryzen 9 7950X3D. This is the big brother of the Ryzen 7 7800X3D and is included in the same line of CPUs. The 7950X3D was released on February 28.
We initially expected all three Ryzen 7000 X3D processors, the Ryzen 7 7800X3D, Ryzen 9 7900X3D, and Ryzen 9 7950X3D, to launch together on February 28. However, the release of the 7800X3D was pushed back to April.
The Ryzen 9 7950X3D shares a lot of similarities with the 7800X3D, but is primarily an upgraded version of it.
It is a 16-core, 32-thread processor with a maximum clock speed of 5.7 GHz and an L3 cache size of 128 MB, which means it outperforms the Ryzen 7 7800X3D in all major CPU specs. Or at least, so it seems on the surface.
The performance gap between the two may not be as significant as this difference in specs would lead you to believe.
How does the 7800X3D compare to the 7950X3D?
The 7950X3D has two chiplets (CCDs) on the CPU die, each with 8 cores. The first 8-core CCD has the V-cache upgrade (96 MB L3 cache) but runs a much lower maximum clock speed of around 5.25 GHz due to the temperature sensitivity of V-cache demanded by the need to keep heat generation low.
The second 8-core CCD features a standard Ryzen L3 cache (only 32MB), but all 8 cores here can run at the stated maximum of 5.7 GHz.
All game-related processing on the 7950X3D takes place on the world’s first V-cache enhanced CCD. The cores of the second CCD are parked or on standby.
That means that during gaming, the 7950X3D is effectively an 8-core, 16-thread processor with a maximum clock speed of 5.25GHz and an L3 cache size of 96MB.
And, as you’ve probably guessed by now, these specs are remarkably similar to the 7800X3D. The only difference is the higher boost clock of 250 MHz.
For gaming, the 7800X3D and 7950X3D (and even the 7900X3D) end up offering very similar performance.
It is theorized that AMD delayed the release of the 7800X3D simply because it would cannibalize sales of the 7950X3D, offering almost equivalent gaming performance for $250 less.
Still, because the first CCD in the 7950X3D runs at a higher clock speed, this CPU can get a win over the 7800X3D in terms of delivered frames, if only by a minimal margin.
To answer the question posed in the title: no, the Ryzen 7 7800X3D is not the fastest gaming CPU. The fastest gaming CPU is the Ryzen 9 7950X3D, and it will probably stay that way at least until the release of the next generation of Core and Ryzen processors.
The 7800X3D is only slightly worse than the 7950X3D. And if we’re realistic, the performance difference in games is negligible. But the 7800X3D costs $250 less, which calls into question the 7950X3D’s value as a gaming processor.