Alder Lake, Intel’s 12th-Gen CPU line, came out in 2021. In October 2022, Raptor Lake, the 13th-Gen CPU line, took its place. AMD has released the Ryzen 7 5800X3D and the brand-new Ryzen 6000 laptop chips, but the new Ryzen 7000 CPUs are the first real competitors. Here’s what you want to know about AMD’s Zen 4 CPUs and whether you should buy one.
Zen 4 processors use the new AM5 socket.
The AM4 socket, which has been used since 2016 (yes, that’s a long time), is going away. This is one of the biggest changes that Zen 4 will bring. AM5, a brand-new socket, has taken its place. This is the biggest change to how AMD CPUs have been made. You need to know two important things about AMD’s new AM5 socket.
The first is that, with AM5, AMD chips are switching from the CPU pins they have used to an LGA design, similar to what Intel does. This means that the bottom pins have been replaced with contact pads, and the pins are now in the motherboard socket.
AMD can add more contact points to the Zen 4 chips with this switch. So, instead of AM4’s 1,331 contacts, AM5 will have 1,718 contacts, which will happen without making the chip bigger. Now we can talk about our second point.
AMD says that users should be able to use their old AM4 chillers on AM5 chips because the chips are almost the same size, and the mounting system is the same. If you already have a reliable air cooler or AIO for your PC, you can use it on your brand-new Ryzen 7000 system.
New Sockets, New Motherboards
Yes, in case you were wondering. Since AMD is releasing its new AM5 socket, you’ll need a new motherboard that endorses it. AMD’s new Ryzen 7000 chips use the brand-new X670, X670E, B650, and B650E chipsets.
AM5 has a completely different design and set of features than AM4, so you can’t put an AM5 CPU in an AM4 motherboard and an AM4 chip in an AM5 motherboard. We had great compatibility between generations with AM4, but we need to keep moving on at some point.
DDR5 and PCIe Generation 5.0 are on Board
The 5000 series, the original model of Ryzen desktop chips, can connect to DDR4 RAM and PCI Express Gen 4.0. But that’s news from yesterday. Intel’s 12th-Gen CPUs endorse DDR5 memory and PCIe Gen 5.0, which is what you’d expect. The same is true for Raptor Lake.
These technologies are still young, but the new Zen 4 CPUs support them fully. In terms of memory, Zen 4 AMD CPUs only work with DDR5 memory, which is different from Intel chips. So, if you want to save money by getting a DDR4-compatible motherboard and RAM, you’ll have to go all-in with DDR5 instead.
As for PCI Express Gen 5.0, Ryzen 7000 CPUs can handle it well. Whether or not you can utilize it relies on the motherboard you choose. If you want full support for PCIe Gen 5.0, you’ll need an X670E or B650E motherboard instead of a regular one. This will let you use SSDs with Gen 5.0 speeds.
EXPO is AMD’s response to XMP.
AMD is also fighting back in other ways against Intel. Memory overclocking is usually done with Intel XMP, but now that we have DDR5, AMD has a chance to bring its technology to users. EXPO is its real answer to XMP, and Zen 4 chips come with it.
EXPO works with a wide range of DDR5 RAM sticks, such as those made by Corsair, ADATA, G.Skill, and Kingston. Since it’s just overclocking the memory, it should be about the same as XMP. Now, though, we don’t have to use technology from a third party to speed up memory. Instead, we have a solution made by AMD.
3D V-Cache could be on the way, but not at launch.
With the Ryzen 7 5800X3D CPU, AMD showed what could be done with its 3D V-Cache technology. The technology lets the chip have a 96MB of L3 cache, giving gamers very good results. No, not yet, but that could change in the future.
Rumors say that Ryzen 7000 chips won’t have 3D V-Cache forever, but that might not be the case. Twitter user Greymon55 says that the 5800X3D keeps the production lines busy but that Zen 4 chips might come in 3D flavors in 2023.
Some people think that the Ryzen 7 5800X3D is the best CPU for gaming money can buy, even though Zen 4 chips are on store shelves. This is because 3D V-Cache gives games a big boost in performance. So the idea of a Ryzen 7000 CPU with 3D V-Cache is very exciting. If you ask us, Ryzen 7000X3D CPUs will be on store shelves before you know it.
Zen 4 is a Significant Advance
We’ve been ready and waiting for almost 2 years for the next big step forward from AMD, and so far, it looks like the wait might have been worth it. Ryzen 7000 and Zen 4 are big improvements over Zen 3, continuing to support new tech and showing that AMD isn’t afraid to do things differently as long as it entails dethroning Intel again.
Zen 4 chips are now in stores, from the mid-range Ryzen 5 7600X with its six cores and 12 threads to the top-of-the-line Ryzen 9 7950X. They are good additions to your next playing games PC build.