6/10/19 Lisa Su’s E3 Surprise! AMD 32.41 to 33.23

I had the pleasure of attending the AMD Next Horizon Gaming E3 2019 presentation in person. It was a lot of fun. Lisa Su has become quite a powerful speaker and presenter. I was given an AMD Team Red T-shirt while in line, sent to sit in the front row and asked to form a mosh pit when Lisa entered. It was quite exciting!

Lisa started talking about gaming and all its platforms. PS5 and Xbox will both have Zen 2 and Navi RDNA. Stadia, launching in November, and XCloud will both use AMD GPUs.

Zen 2 has 15 % uplift in IPC, 2x cache size and 2x floating point.

Lisa now compared the R9 3900X to the $1200 Intel i9 9920, both 12 cores.

3900X is +14% in single thread, +6% in multi threads and uses lower power (105 W vs 165 W in TDP).

Now she compared the R9 3900X to Intel i9 9900K, which sells for $500.

Demo showed they both have same FPS in gaming.

Now Lisa talked about advantage of 12 cores over 8 cores. The 12 cores is able to play at high FPS and stream simultaneously, at a high FPS.

Demos showed the while the 3900X and 9900K both can game well, but when asked to stream, 3900X streamed at 59 FPS, and 9900K only at 1.6 FPS.

Now she compared the 3800X vs the i7 9700K ($399). demo showed them gaming at similar FPS, yet the 3800X has 16 threads, vs 9700K has only 8 threads. 3800X will win in all productivity tasks.

Same argument was made for the 6 cores 3600X. It has same FPS as the 9600K but has 12 threads instead of just 6.

So AMD Ryzen has caught up with Intel on gaming FPS yet has more cores and threads.

Now GPU. RX 5700 family. RDNA. Faster clock speed. PCIe 4.0 enabled.

Lisa emphasized that new GPU architecture is needed because it is more flexible, scalable (think Samsung), and works across all gaming platforms (PC, consoles, mobile). This theme will appear repeatedly.


The Navi RDNA has 25% increase in performance per clock, and 50% increase in performance per watt.

Now demo showed RX 5700XT beating RTX 2070, and RX 5700 beating RTX 2060.

AMD introduced the Fidelity FX, an open sourced image quality tool kit for game developers. They can integrate into their game engines and games. Fidelity FX will improve image quality without taking hit in performance! Here’s looking at you, Nvidia and their RT.

Now AMD introduced the Radeon Anti-Lag. It decreases the motion to photon latency.

Demo pitched the RX 5700XT vs the RTX 2070. Lag in RTX 2070 is 59 ms, and only 45 ms in RX 5700 XT, which translate into 1 to 1.5 frame improvement. This could be a significant advantage in gaming. Overall there is a 31% improvement in latency, or click to response time.

5700 XT sells for $449. 5700 sells for $379. All available on July 7, 2019.

Now the software side, games.

Gears 5 on stage. They mentioned that it’s great that AMD is in both PC and consoles. That makes it easier for them to optimize across platforms. In the past, game developers tend to optimize for Nvidia as a priority. Now, with Radeon everywhere, developers will have lots of incentive to optimize for Radeon! So AMD’s dominance in consoles will benefit AMD’s PC GPUs.

Borderlands on stage. They use AMD Fidelity FX!

AMD partner Unity on stage. Unity provides game engine, notably for VR and 3D. They are collaborating closely with AMD and Fidelity FX.

Ubisoft on stage. They are also collaborating closely with AMD.

Lisa Su was gifted a Lisa Su superhero action figure on stage.

Finally, Lisa saved a surprise, or two.

RX 5700 XT 50th anniversary edition. $499. Creme of the crop. Sold directly from AMD.

Now the grand finale. The world’s first 16 cores gaming CPU!

R9 3950X! 4.7 GHz boost, 72 MB cache and TDP only 105 watts!

Best of the best! Available September 2019! I think this is great, in that it likely implies the yield for the best binned 8 cores chiplets is very good, such that AMD have plenty for both Rome and 3950X.

In summary: On the CPU side, AMD has caught up with Intel in single thread performance, and is beating Intel soundly in cores and threads. Because of Infinity Fabric, AMD can make their chiplets much cheaper. OEMs are finally on board. Even Microsoft is updating Windows to optimize performance for Ryzen’s unique architecture. See article below.


On the GPU side, even though Radeon still has nothing the compete with Nvidia’s RTX 2080ti, but Radeon is succeeding on so many fronts: GPU in cloud/datacenter and game streaming, in PS5 and Xbox, and later on, even mobile (Samsung cellphones and tablets). The most important thing is that game developers are now working closely with AMD, because indeed Radeon is everywhere!

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