SPEC2017 Single-Threaded Results

SPEC2017 is a series of standardized tests used to probe the overall performance between different systems, different architectures, different microarchitectures, and setups. The code has to be compiled, and then the results can be submitted to an online database for comparison. It covers a range of integer and floating point workloads, and can be very optimized for each CPU, so it is important to check how the benchmarks are being compiled and run.

We run the tests in a harness built through Windows Subsystem for Linux, developed by Andrei Frumusanu. WSL has some odd quirks, with one test not running due to a WSL fixed stack size, but for like-for-like testing it is good enough. Because our scores aren’t official submissions, as per SPEC guidelines we have to declare them as internal estimates on our part.

For compilers, we use LLVM both for C/C++ and Fortan tests, and for Fortran we’re using the Flang compiler. The rationale of using LLVM over GCC is better cross-platform comparisons to platforms that have only have LLVM support and future articles where we’ll investigate this aspect more. We’re not considering closed-source compilers such as MSVC or ICC.

clang version 10.0.0
clang version 7.0.1 (ssh://git@github.com/flang-compiler/flang-driver.git

-Ofast -fomit-frame-pointer
-mfma -mavx -mavx2

Our compiler flags are straightforward, with basic –Ofast and relevant ISA switches to allow for AVX2 instructions.

To note, the requirements for the SPEC licence state that any benchmark results from SPEC have to be labeled ‘estimated’ until they are verified on the SPEC website as a meaningful representation of the expected performance. This is most often done by the big companies and OEMs to showcase performance to customers, however is quite over the top for what we do as reviewers.

SPECint2017 Rate-1 Estimated Scores

Opening up our performance analysis of the Ryzen Threadripper 7980X in SPEC2017 1T, as we typically do, we split the results between SPECint2017 and SPECfp2017. Starting with SPECint2017, we can see clear gains in the Ryzen Threadripper 7980X (Zen 4) compared to the previous Threadripper 3990X processor (Zen 2). Given the generational gap between the two core architectures, AMD never released regular HEDT-focused Zen 3 Threadripper processors.

In the majority of our tests, we're seeing single-threaded performance gains of between 65 and 93% within the 500.perlbench_r test of the SPECint2017 1T suite provided the largest gain in ST performance we saw. Looking at how the Intel Xeon W9-3495X performed in SPECint2017, lower single-threaded performance is expected due to the slower core frequencies, and our data shows this. It still puts it ahead of the Ryzen Threadripper 3990X in each scenario, but the Ryzen Threadripper 7980X performs best of all.

SPECfp2017 Rate-1 Estimated Scores

Focusing on the second half of our SPEC2017 1T suite, the SPECfp2017 section, we can see that although the performance gap between the Threadripper 7980X isn't as big as SPECint2017 1T, it still represents solid generational gains over the 3990X. The SPECfp2017 1T section of the suite also puts the Intel Xeon W9-3495X closer to the older Threadripper 3990X, which can, again, be explained due to the much slower core frequencies, e.g., 1.9 G base, 3.4 G turbo vs. 2.9 G base, 4.3 G turbo.

Overall, in SPEC2017 1T, the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 7000 represents significant single-threaded gains over the Threadripper 3990X, but we expected this given the generational jump between the two processors.

AMD Ryzen Threadripper 7980X and 7970X Review SPEC2017 Multi-Threaded Results
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  • thestryker - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    Forgot to add: these are just the lower SKU workstation parts not a resurrection of HEDT
  • wujj123456 - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    > the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 7980X ($4999), despite having eight fewer cores than the W9-3495X ($5889), half the memory channels (4 vs. 8) and being ultimately cheaper, it is the better option.

    Am I reading it wrong? 7980X has eight more cores than W9-3495X not fewer. Don't think it changes the conclusion though.
  • rUmX - Tuesday, November 21, 2023 - link

    You're right
  • Gavin Bonshor - Tuesday, November 21, 2023 - link

    Thanks for highlighting that obvious error, edited!
  • bernstein - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    It remains true, what has been true for every threadripper: if your software allows for computing on more than one node, using 5-10 ryzen servers for the same money gives you more performance, redundancy, more io-bandwith & for many usecases even more total ram.
  • vfridman - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    There is a lot of so called "professional" use cases that require a lot of RAM on a single machine. It often possible to split calculations across a cluster of machines, but not so with RAM.
  • quorm - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    A nice increase in performance, but seems like almost everyone would be better off with either desktop ryzen or pro/epyc.
  • Thunder 57 - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    You should either use bar graphs that show the 14900K's performance when limited to 125W, or you should just change the graphs and list the 14900K as 428W.

    AMD doesn't get a pass either but at least they are more honest. With these new Threadrippers they are actually spot on. Meanwhile the "350W" Xeon uses just over 500W. At the very least maybe include some efficiency charts?
  • thestryker - Monday, November 20, 2023 - link

    Not that the power consumption is good, but these represent the absolute maximum power draw number seen they do not represent workload power draw. If they were to pick "real" power numbers they would have to measure power consumption for every single test and show that.
  • Oxford Guy - Tuesday, November 21, 2023 - link

    Deceptive power usage needs to be stopped.

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