Credit: Tom's HardwareCredit: Tom’s Hardware

We recently took the then-unannounced Ryzen 9 3900 on a record-breaking spin, but now the chip is officially launched…kind of. AMD announced the Ryzen 9 3900 and Ryzen 5 3500X with little fanfare today, but for OEM and system integrator (SI) customers only. The 3900 is available globally, while the 3500X is only available in China.

Ryzen 9 3900 Specifications and Availability

AMD designed the Ryzen 9 3900 to offer most of the 12-core, 24-threaded horsepower of the impressive Ryzen 9 3900X, but within a much lower 65W TDP range than its bigger brother, which sucks down 105W.

The 3900’s reduced power consumption manifests as a lower 3.1 GHz base clock than the 3.8 GHz on the 3900X. AMD also pared back the boost clock to 4.3 GHz. Aside from those alterations, the Ryzen 9 3900 is identical to the 3900X, and both support overclocking.

That means the Ryzen 9 3900 could theoretically offer similar performance to the chronically-understocked Ryzen 9 3900X. AMD also recently announced the PRO variant of the 3900, which sports the same specifications.

With AMD already selling every 3900X it can punch out at premium pricing, there’s little impetus to bring the Ryzen 9 3900 to market at a lower price point. It’s really a shame this processor isn’t coming to the retail market as it would present a great value option for budget builders, particularly for small form factor builds. It was plenty impressive in our testing, but as it stands now, this chip will only come in pre-built systems.

Cores / Threads
Base Frequency 
Boost Frequency 
Total Cache
PCIe 4.0 Lanes (Processor / Chipset)
AMD Ryzen 9 3900X $499 12 / 24 105W 3.8 GHz 4.6 GHz 70MB 24 / 16 
AMD Ryzen 9 3900 N/A
12 / 24
65W 3.1 GHz 4.3 GHz 70MB 24 / 16 
AMD Ryzen 9 PRO 3900 N/A 12 / 24 65W 3.1 GHz 4.3 GHz 70MB 24 / 16
Ryzen 7 3700X $329 8 / 16 65W 3.6 GHz 4.4 GHz 36MB 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3600 $199 6 / 12 65W 3.6 GHz 4.2 GHz 35MB 24 / 16
Ryzen 5 3500X
6 / 6
3.6 GHz
4.1 GHz
24 / 16

Ryzen 5 3500X Specifications and Availability

Meanwhile, the Ryzen 5 3500X slots in as a six-core model but comes without simultaneous multi-threading (SMT), meaning it only has six threads of performance on offer. AMD tends to avoid de-featuring its retail processors, so the lack of SMT stands out among the Ryzen 3000 product stack.

Surprisingly, the 3500X will only be made available to OEM/SI customers in China. This chip is meant to tackle Intel’s Core i5-9400F in the OEM market, but there are also rumblings of a Ryzen 5 3500 (non-X model) coming to market soon. It might also be destined for the OEM/SI markets, but only time will tell.

Both processors come bearing all the expected goods of the Ryzen 3000 series, like the 7nm process, Zen 2 microarchitecture, and support for PCIe 4.0.

Here’s AMD’s announcement on the matter:

“The Ryzen 9 3900, now available globally, and Ryzen 5 3500X, available in China only, enjoy the features of current Ryzen 3000 series processors, letting OEM and SI partners take full advantage of AMD’s most advanced CPU platform. Both Ryzen processors offer powerful gaming and high-speed productivity performance, support industry leading PCIe 4.0, AMD’s Precision Boost Overdrive and Ryzen Master Utility, and, like all Ryzen 3000 processors, are fully unlocked for performance tuning.”

AMD isn’t sharing pricing for these chips. As OEM models, they are largely bought in volume purchases only. As such, we don’t expect the company to share pricing information any time soon. Both chips are available to OEMs now.

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