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Enthusiasts and apologists: Why AMD?

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P A U L

Registered
Joined
Mar 24, 2016
I built an AMD PC about 10 years ago because, I can't remember the exact reason I held in my mind at the time, AMD were better somehow. I don't recall being impressed and maybe 0.1% disappointed (also can't remember why).

But it seems AMD is still very, very popular especially with Ryzen.

So... enlighten me?
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
AMD Ryzen CPUs, particularly from the 2000 series forward, has been quite competitive with Intel, actually surpassing them in the 5000 series. More cores/threads and slightly slower clocks than Intel, in general. But yeah, if you can actual ly utilize the additional cores and threads it (used to - Alder Lake from Intel is here flipping the tables again... mostly) they make for awesome chips. Great gamers too... now just a hair slower than Intel.

But yeah, there's reviews on our front page for ryzen that explain the architecture changes... plenty of great info. :)
 

mackerel

Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2008
Ryzen has turned around AMD's CPU business.

Zen was sold on high core count at low pricing, although it was offset by fussy ram support and struggled to clock. Zen+ partially improved that allowing it to ride higher clocks more of the time.

Zen 2 is the first generation where it could be argued they passed Intel CPUs of the time clearly in architecture. Before that, Zen was slightly better in some respects, but a LOT worse in some others. Zen 2 removed most of those "others".

Zen 3 continues on from Zen 2 with further improvements, although you can also see AMD charging what they can now. Only top tier models are available for the full desktop CPU, and cheaper option is the much downsized/limited APUs.

Also consider Ryzen came out right when Intel were deep in their fabrication problems. Intel couldn't really do much more than Skylake but bigger and faster to respond to AMD. Only with Alder Lake have they shown their first steps to reclaiming leadership on desktop, but it might take some more years.
 

Woomack

Benching Team Leader
Joined
Jan 2, 2005
For years, AMD was a brand for home entertainment which was slower but significantly cheaper than Intel, and that's why it was highly competitive. Business users were skipping AMD until about Ryzen 2000/3000 release and server/workstation chips based on the same architecture. I can say that business and professional users started to trust AMD since Ryzen 3000. Also about then, motherboard manufacturers, branded PC, and laptop manufacturers started to offer comparable quality products to the Intel series. AMD was accepted widely after the success of Ryzen 1000/2000 but when the 1000 series was released then was still too early to say much about it. People needed the time to gain trust in a company that had so many failures on the way. Now AMD has the next generation of Ryzen and they took over a large % of the home/office and business markets. Intel had a bump in sales in the last 2 generations (like 11/12), but mainly because of higher Ryzen 5000 prices and significant price drops on the Intel side.

I'm not on any side, but it's not hard to notice that AMD motherboards, graphics cards, and branded PC were always of worse quality and had worse support than Intel/Nvidia based products (fewer BIOS releases and any other improvements, cheaper components, etc.). It has changed about the time Ryzen 3000 and RX6000 graphics cards appeared on the market. I could say earlier but because of AMD premiere problems, users were fighting with failed BIOS/firmware for various products or cheap power designs. Right now all AMD motherboards are similar to the Intel series (at least at the same price level) and every RX6000 card has a power design based on AMD requirements, also regarding used components.
 
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EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Ryzen has turned around AMD's CPU business.

Zen was sold on high core count at low pricing, although it was offset by fussy ram support and struggled to clock. Zen+ partially improved that allowing it to ride higher clocks more of the time.

Zen 2 is the first generation where it could be argued they passed Intel CPUs of the time clearly in architecture. Before that, Zen was slightly better in some respects, but a LOT worse in some others. Zen 2 removed most of those "others".

Zen 3 continues on from Zen 2 with further improvements, although you can also see AMD charging what they can now. Only top tier models are available for the full desktop CPU, and cheaper option is the much downsized/limited APUs.

Also consider Ryzen came out right when Intel were deep in their fabrication problems. Intel couldn't really do much more than Skylake but bigger and faster to respond to AMD. Only with Alder Lake have they shown their first steps to reclaiming leadership on desktop, but it might take some more years.
Awesome details here (and Woo's post). Just in case the OP isn't aware of the (desktop) processor series that go with the generations, here's a list... :)

Zen = 1000 series
Zen+ = 2000 series
Zen2 = 3000 series
Zen3 = 5000 series
 

David

Forums Super Moderator
Joined
Feb 20, 2001
I've usually went AMD with desktops because of price - they are usually (at the times I've been buying desktop parts) better value for money (IMO) and I've not run into issues.

I've tended to go Intel for laptops, because there is a wider choice and the flagship models tend to be Intel ones. I've also leaned towards Intel for many-core workstations/computing resource because the AMD chips are still not available as widely and the purchasing arrangements that my employer has with Dell, HP, etc. make it uneconomical to go for e.g. a Lenovo TR system.
 

Janus67

Benching Team Leader
Joined
May 29, 2005
I went with a Ryzen/AMD system for my first AMD CPU-based build since a San Diego 3700+ days. Works a treat! Tons of cores and plenty of speed with not too much wattage usage.
 

BugFreak

Joined
Apr 29, 2010
Location
Central FL
Very interesting information above. Much of it I had no idea about. For many years I was an AMD loyalist primarily because of baseline price and with a little work I could closely compete with an Intel system for a much cheaper price tag. Once AMD software like drivers and BIOS started getting wonky I gave up on them. It seemed every time I bought a new AMD product I had to wait weeks for software that worked properly to come out so I could use it. Now that AMD seems reliable there really isn't a price difference so I stick with Intel. Maybe down the road I'll give them another shot.
 

Mr.Scott

Beamed Me Up!
Joined
Jun 9, 2013
As an enthusiast and overclocker, I always indulged in AMD because there were more knobs to twist. The end result was always more satisfying to me than the Intel counterparts.
 

mackerel

Member
Joined
Mar 7, 2008
Awesome details here (and Woo's post). Just in case the OP isn't aware of the (desktop) processor series that go with the generations, here's a list... :)

Zen = 1000 series
Zen+ = 2000 series
Zen2 = 3000 series
Zen3 = 5000 series
As of about an hour ago, we now also officially have:
Zen 3+ = 6000 series coming soon to APUs
Zen 4 = 7000 series 2H this year
 

Itchie

Member
Joined
Aug 15, 2001
Location
Barrie
In my case I've always liked rooting for the underdog which has meant going with AMD. Ever since I built my first PC in 2000 (Duron 750) all my builds have been AMD (although all my laptops except 1 have been Intel). I suppose if I had to build a PC during the Bulldozer fiasco I woudl have gone with Intel but I skipped that generation. My next PC will be AMD too, just waiting for AM5/Zen 4 to release. :)
 

freeagent

Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2004
Location
Winnipeg!
I rolled an X58, then a Z77 system for 10 or 11 years. I had the opportunity to upgrade and I took it. I almost went with Intel 10th gen at the time just to play it safe.. go with watcha know right? Instead I decided to see what the fuss was about with Ryzen.. pretty glad I decided to see for myself what the hype was about, it really is an impressive setup. Of course not as fast as ADL, but ADL was not live last year :D