AMD Talks Zen 2 IPC, Clocks & Gaming Performance Improvements – “Ryzen Was A Worst Case Scenario”

Khalid Moammer

Today is the last day of PAXWest and AMD was present in full force at the event, showcasing its latest and greats Ryzen, Threadripper & Vega goodies. Among the AMD'ers present at the event was the company's desktop CPU marketing guru and former Tom's Hardware editor Don Woligroski.

Friend of the site Joker, from Joker Productions, managed to catch Don and geek out with him for a little bit and talk about a myriad of topics including Threadripper, Ryzen 2 and multi-threaded CPU game optimizations. I'd highly recommend checking out the interview in its entirety, which you can find here.

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AMD: "Ryzen Was A Worst Case Scenario", IPC & Clock Speeds Are Only Going Up From Here

Don Woligroski, Desktop CPU Marketing Manager at AMD

I've said this before and I think it holds true. Zen, Ryzen, was the worst case scenario. It was a brand new architecture on a brand new node. So the worst case scenario we could've possibly had, and it's pretty good. You can get to over 4.GHz.

We're definitely working on improving, our engineers [are] really smart guys and things are looking better as we go along. I can't talk to specifics on IPC but that's an area of focus. We've got clock speed headroom to take advantage of and we've got tweaks to make sure performance for each clock is better. I'm really looking forward to it...

...I'm personally very encouraged by what's happening in the next little while. We threw down in 2017. We've seen our competitor starting to wake up and respond and we're not just going to roll over. We have more stuff to come, we've got really good stuff coming.  We're not a one hit wonder, we're keeping the pressure on for sometime. It'll be a great 2018,. It was a great 2017 and we'll see how things turn out.

AMD Wants To Offer The Best Value In Every Segment & Move PC Gaming Into The Multi-Core Era

Joker conveyed a question from a viewer who wanted to know "How does it feel to be back on top in the CPU market ?"

Don Woligroski, Desktop CPU Marketing Manager at AMD

I can't describe how good it feels. I've been working at AMD for three years and I'm a long time AMD fan. My first serious CPU was a Duron...
...One of the reasons I really like AMD and I came to AMD Is that companies have their corporate mantras but, we really do as a company look at a segment and say what can we give these people that they don't get. How can we be the guys that it's a no-brainer to buy AMD because we give them so much in this segment. And Ryzen really opened up our abilities to attack higher segments. We were really good with budget segments for a while but I mean really having something on top, having a high-end Threadripper, and at the same time as offering that ultimate performance we're still giving you the best for the dollar...

...So every segment we're like, what more can we give? And it's gratifying to be able to give that to the higher-end segments. Which really people at the high-end have not had value for a long time. They've been paying out the nose and they don't really get, I think, what they deserve and a different experience for that money.

And the second gratifying thing is that game developers have to develop for the widest area of people to make your money back, you just have to. You can't make a game that requires 32 threads when there's nothing out there that does it. If we can push the market, which we have, into giving everybody more cores and threads then all of a sudden people start developing for that. They're like hey, it makes a lot of sense to develop for guys who are running 8 threads, 12 threads, maybe we can do something special for them and maybe it changes the way people game in five years. That's the really exciting part of this. That's the best part about being on top.

What AMD Is Doing To Optimize Games To Take Advantage Of More Cores & Threads

Joker :
What are you guys doing to optimize, to make sure that more game developers are taking advantage of more threads? What are you doing to get that into older games that are already out and future games as well?

Don Woligroski, Desktop CPU Marketing Manager at AMD

For games that are already released, our focus is making sure if they have a problem on Ryzen processors, which some do you'll see a big performance delta, you're like why? Ryzen is pretty fast and we'll go and engage with the developer. We did it for Dota 2, Rise Of The Tomb raider and we just find out what was wrong.

For future looking stuff, it's that chicken or egg scenario. When you have more threads and cores available the guys will start developing for it. We certainly have engineers that we hand out to guys who are developing games and our partners like Bethesda have been really great. They're like how do we take advantage of this hardware? and we send guys in to say here's how you do it. Here's some ideas and it's just a feedback loop. It just gets better and better. We finally have the APIs, now they're going to learn how to use them. It's not an instant ON. But then it's inevitable. Next couple of years you'll start seeing people doing it, great advances. And then it becomes the norm and everybody starts doing that. And then maybe in five years it's 64 threads, who knows. It's that beautiful upgrade path that's for so long has been a plateau that no one has been pushing harder. I think it's going to benefit us all.


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