Performance & Testing
As this is our first X399 review, we’re forced to test against several other systems from Intel and AMD both. Our Intel X299 HEDT systems are equipped with an Intel Core i7-7820X or i9-7960X for 16 core comparisons. Our other AMD systems are based around the X370 chipset and an AMD Ryzen 5-1500X
General Performance Testing
All benchmarks are run using stock settings on the CPU, which leaves XFR enabled for some automatic boosting. We noticed it frequently running as high as 3.9Ghz under light to moderate loads, and 3.6-3.7Ghz under moderate to heavy loads. The ram was manually clocked to its XMP rating of 3200Mhz @ 16-16-16-39 Speeds.
Games where ran at a resolution of 1920 x 1080 and higher settings enabled.
"Use the PCMark 8 Storage benchmark to test the performance of SSDs, HDDs and hybrid drives with traces recorded from Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office and a selection of popular games. You can test the system drive or any other recognized storage device, including local external drives. Unlike synthetic storage tests, the PCMark 8 Storage benchmark highlights real-world performance differences between storage devices."
We see the X399 platform trail Intel's HEDT lineup by a fair amount in Creative and slightly in Home use categories, but when it comes time to work, Threadripper is in the game.
Super PI Modded 1.5
“In August 1995, the calculation of pi up to 4,294,960,000 decimal digits was succeeded by using a supercomputer at the University of Tokyo. The program was written by D.Takahashi in collaboration with Dr.Y.Kanada at the computer center. This record should be the current world record. (Details are shown in the windows help.) This record-breaking program was ported to personal computer environments such as Windows NT and Windows 95. In order to calculate 33.55 million digits, it takes 3 days with a Pentium 90 MHz, 40 MB main memory and 340 MB available storage.”
As a single threaded test, the Threadripper system trails intel's HEDT platforms significantly due to clock speeds. This is no fault of the STRIX X399-E Gaming though.
"CINEBENCH is a real-world cross platform test suite that evaluates your computer's performance capabilities. CINEBENCH is based on MAXON's award-winning animation software CINEMA 4D, which is used extensively by studios and production houses worldwide for 3D content creation. MAXON software has been used in blockbuster movies such as Iron Man 3, Oblivion, Life of Pi or Prometheus and many more.
CINEBENCH is the perfect tool to compare CPU and graphics performance across various systems and platforms (Windows and OS X). And best of all: It's completely free."
Here we see the 1950X slightly trailing the i9-7960X, mostly due to the lower stock clock settings.
The benchmark shows a rating of MIPS (million instructions per second). The rating value is calculated from the measured speed, and it is normalized with results of Intel Core 2 CPU with multi-threading option switched off. So if you have modern CPU from Intel or AMD, rating values in single-thread mode must be close to real CPU frequency. There are two tests, compression with LZMA method and decompression with LZMA method. Once the total passes reaches 100, the score is taken
Raw compute performance is on part with Intel's 6 core offering, and not far behind its 18 core offerings.
Memory Performance Testing
AIDA64 Engineer Edition
“FinalWire Ltd. today announced the immediate availability of AIDA64 Extreme Edition 1.50 software, a streamlined diagnostic and benchmarking tool for home users; and the immediate availability of AIDA64 Business Edition 1.50 software, an essential network management solution for small and medium scale enterprises. The new AIDA64 update implements AVX-optimized benchmarks for the upcoming Intel Sandy Bridge processors, adds a brand new video encoding benchmark, and supports the latest AMD and NVIDIA graphics processors.”
Compared to other HEDT systems, our X399-E does reasonably well with strong write performance, while read rates tail a bit.
On the Latency side it doesn’t look quite as nice, however, there are fundamental architectural differences between the two HEDT platforms, so it really isn’t an ‘apples to apples’ comparison. AMD employs two seperate physical CPU dies each with its own pair of memory controllers. If a compute unit needs something from the memory pool attached to the other CPU die, it has to go across the Infinity Fabric which incurs a pretty hefty latency penalty.
Passmark Performance Test - Memory Mark - Threaded
“Fast, easy to use, PC speed testing and benchmarking. PassMark PerformanceTest ™ allows you to objectively benchmark a PC using a variety of different speed tests and compare the results to other computers.”
Passmark’s memory mark shows a good gain going from a dual channel setup on our Ryzen builds to Threadripper, however, it still can’t quite catch Intel’s latest quad channel setups.
“SiSoftware Sandra provides a robust package of diagnostic tools for testing your system and teasing out its problems--or potential headaches.”
Sisoft Sandra shows the same trend as the other memory testing.
ATTO Disk Benchmark
“As the industry's leading provider of high-performance storage & network connectivity products, ATTO has created a widely-accepted Disk Benchmark freeware utility to help measure storage system performance. As one of the top tools utilized in the industry, Disk Benchmark identifies performance in hard drives, solid state drives, RAID arrays as well as connections to storage. Top drive manufacturers, like Hitachi, build and test every drive using the ATTO Disk Benchmark"
“CrystalDiskMark is designed to quickly test the performance of your hard drives. Currently, the program allows measuring sequential and random read/write speeds."
Measuring our OS Drive in AHCI mode, the Corsair Force LX we see exactly what the manufacturer's specifications show it should be.
A Samsung 960 Pro 2TB M.2 SSD shows full performance in the STRIX X399-E’s vertical M.2 port.
"Test the sequential or random read/write performance without using the cache. AS SSD Benchmark reads/writes a 1 Gigabyte file as well as randomly chosen 4K blocks. Additionally, it performs the tests using 1 or 64 threads and it determines the SSD's access time.
Two extra benchmark tests examine the drive's behavior when (1) copying a few big files, a lot of small files and a mixture of file sizes by using cached copy functions of your OS as well as (2) reading/writing data depending on the data's compressibility."
AS SSD shows the same as Crystal Disk Mark for our OS drive.
3DMark – Fire Strike
"Fire Strike is a showcase DirectX 11 benchmark designed for today's high-performance gaming PCs. It is our most ambitious and technical benchmark ever, featuring real-time graphics rendered with detail and complexity far beyond what is found in other benchmarks and games today"
On the gaming side of the world, The X399 based ROG Strix X399-E Gaming does well.
3DMark – Time Spy
"3Dmark Time Spy is a new DirectX 12 benchmark test for Windows 10 gaming PCs. Time Spay is one of the first DirectX 12 apps to be built “the right way” from the ground up to fully realize the performance gains that the new API offers. With DirectX 12 engine, which supports new API features like asynchronous compute, explicit multi-adapter, and multi-threading, Time Spy is the ideal test for benchmarking the latest graphics cards.”
While it doesn’t top the charts in Timespy, it does hold its own quite well placing in the upper middle of the pack of HEDT systems.
Grand Theft Auto: V
"When a young street hustler, a retired bank robber, and a terrifying psychopath find themselves entangled with some of the most frightening and deranged elements of the criminal underworld, the U.S. government and the entertainment industry, they must pull off a series of dangerous heists to survive in a ruthless city in which they can trust nobody, least of all each other.”
Lower stock clock speeds keep the Threadripper system trailing just a hair in GTA: V even with plenty of horsepower under the hood.
Metro: Last Light
"It Is the Year 2034. Beneath the ruins of post-apocalyptic Moscow, in the tunnels of the Metro, the remnants of mankind are besieged by deadly threats from outside – and within. Mutants stalk the catacombs beneath the desolate surface, and hunt amidst the poisoned skies above."
Developed by 4A Games and published by Deepsilver, Metro: Last Light uses the 4A game engine. At its highest settings, the 4A game engine is capable of bringing all but the most extreme gaming systems to their knees.
And again, the lower stock clock speed hurts gaming performance when the game cant take advantage of the massive amount of threads, as most currently cant.