AMD makes big announcements: Ryzen 3000XT processors, budget A520 chipset, and more

Today, AMD is announcing a refresh of its Ryzen 3000 series mainstream desktop Matisse CPUs and is calling them the 3000XT processors. These are compatible with existing AM4 motherboards, though you might need a BIOS update if you wish to upgrade an older Ryzen CPU.

AMD has often used the 'XT' moniker on its GPUs but this is the first time the company will be using it on its CPUs. XT is used to indicate higher performance compared to its non-XT counterpart. This higher performance can be achieved thanks to higher maximum boost clocks that the new models have, but architecturally, the core is still Zen 2. Base clocks and the TDPs will remain the same. AMD says the clock gains are a result of the 7nm process optimization.

In total, there are three new SKUs, one each for the Ryzen 5, Ryzen 7, and Ryzen 9 lineups, namely the Ryzen 5 3600XT, Ryzen 7 3800XT, and Ryzen 9 3900XT. These will be available from the seventh of next month at the same price the originals launched. The Ryzen 3 series, however, gets no XT love as of now.

For some reason, AMD seems to have skipped the inclusion of the Wraith Prism cooler on the 3800XT even though it came with the Ryzen 7 3800X and is recommending users to opt for liquid cooling. The 3600XT, though, will be including the Wraith Spire, just like its predecessor.

AMD also announced A520 chipset for budget PC builders. The x20 series chipset generally lacks processor overclocking support and most of the other enthusiast features. AMD says the chipset will support all "3rd Gen AMD Ryzen processors and beyond" and will be available from August from major motherboard vendors.

StoreMI, AMD's answer to Intel's Optane memory, has also received performance upgrades in its new 2.0 version when it comes to the caching algorithm and faster data access. In its internal testing, AMD notes up to 31% faster boot times and up to 13% faster World of Warcraft load time against an HDD. For its testing, AMD used a PCIe 4 NVMe SSD as the cache drive, so results may vary depending on the drive you use and the games you play.

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