Radeon VII & GeForce RTX 2080 utilizing Ryzen 7 2700X & Core i7-8700Okay

Today we're examining a few different hardware configurations to see if certain matches work better than others. For example, when Ryzen first hit the market in 2017, it turned out that Zen-based CPUs combined with a Radeon GPU performed better than a GeForce GPU. The only problem was that the Radeon RX 480 was the fastest GPU that AMD had to offer. Since it was much slower than the competing GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, nobody used it for CPU testing.

Fast forward to today and the situation has not changed too much. AMD's new flagship GPU, the Radeon VII, can only keep up with the 2017 GTX 1080 Ti and is therefore much slower than the RTX 2080 Ti. In addition, it has been largely unavailable since its introduction a few weeks ago, although we have our test device for Have testing ready.

We thought it might be interesting to test some popular games with the Ryzen 7 2700X and Core i7-8700K processors, each paired with the Radeon VII, GeForce GTX 1080 Ti and RTX 2080, as all three GPUs are similar Offer performance level.

The focus of this test is not on a comparison of AMD and Intel CPUs. We have done this many times in the past. It's not a direct GPU comparison either, we also did a lot of them. The choice of CPU is not even that relevant. For example, we could have used the 2600X and the i5-8400 since it is not a CPU comparison. What interests us most here is monitoring performance margins, not direct performance.

Is a CPU better with a certain GPU or are we just crazy about benchmarking? If only for fun, let’s go.

All tests were run at 1440p to achieve more realistic game conditions. Since this is not a CPU test, benchmarking at 1080p or lower is not a priority. Both the Intel and AMD platforms were equipped with 16 GB DDR4-3200 CL14 memory, and all performance enhancement features were disabled. All benchmark data is up to date and was collected specifically for this function. Driver version 419.17 was used for the GeForce GPUs and driver version 19.2.3 for the Radeon VII driver version.


Starting with Assassin's Creed Odyssey, we see that the three GPUs are evenly matched to the average frame rate when tested with the 8700K. The Radeon VII delivers the best 1% low number. Here it was 8% faster than the RTX 2080.

When transitioning to the 2700X and the 1% low margin, the Radeon VII grows 19% faster than the RTX 2080 and 11% faster than the GTX 1080 Ti. Interesting to see that Turing delivers the lowest frame rates in this test. The average frame rates are 9% lower with the AMD CPU, for example with the Radeon VII the average frame rate dropped by 11% and that by 1% by 9%.

With the RTX 2080, the average frame rate dropped by 8%, the low frame rate by 1% by 17%. So it's clear that the Turing GPU doesn't work as well with the Ryzen processor, at least in this title, and we already know that Assassin's Creed Odyssey isn't a good game to showcase Ryzen.

When switching to Apex Legends, we tested the same section of multiplayer mode, averaging three different runs. This is not a CPU-demanding game, at least when it comes to high-end CPUs. We see very similar results with the 2700X or 8700K and the edges were also very similar so everything looks good here.

The performance in Battlefield V is exactly as expected. The RTX 2080 saw the largest 1% drop in performance when transitioning from 8700K to 2700X. This time, however, this is due to the Ryzen CPU causing a system bottleneck in this game. The same problem occurs when looking at the average frame rate of the Radeon VII.

Like Apex Legends, Forza Horizon 4 is not a particularly CPU-demanding game. In fact, we know that this title will run smoothly on a modern dual core like the Athlon 200GE. Still, we took it up to check if a fun business was going on. It turns out that this is not the case. So let's go on.

When testing with Fortnite, we find that both the GTX 1080 Ti and the RTX 2080 in combination with the Ryzen 7 2700X offer better performance of 1%, which is quite significant in the case of the Turing GPU. This is in stark contrast to the Radeon VII, which was slightly slower for both the 1% low and the average frame rate in connection with the AMD CPU. Overall, however, the results are similar, except for the 1% low of the RTX 2080.

We discovered early on that Hitman hates 2 Ryzen processors. The original Hitman with DX12 worked well, but went a bit backwards at the second installment. Overall, the margins between the different GPUs remained the same, we only decreased by around 20% with the AMD processor.

The performance in Just Cause 4 looks pretty normal, the 2700X was a bit slower and this was observed on all three GPUs, so not much to report.

We see a similar story when testing with Metro Exodus. The higher clocked 8700K has a slight performance advantage and this applies regardless of the GPU used. The margins are also the same with a drop in performance of 3-5%.

When testing with Project Cars 2, we find that the GeForce GPUs in conjunction with the Ryzen CPU have an equivalent or slightly better performance of 1%, while the opposite is true for the Radeon VII. Admittedly, the margins are small and we would not read too much into them. So far nothing has come close to what we saw with Assassins Creed.

When we switched to Resident Evil 2 when we ran our first tests on the Ryzen 7 2700X, there seemed to be a problem with the 1% low result, so we ran again and got the same 60-ish fps. If you switch to the next GPU and find it, and after an average of three runs for each configuration, these are the results.

For some reason, the Ryzen CPU suffered from periods when the 1% low dropped to around 60 fps while the 8700K remained above 90 fps. This meant that the 8700K was at least 54% faster for the 1% low, but only up to 13% faster for the average frame rate.

The performance scaling in Rainbow Six Siege was consistent across all hardware configurations tested. There isn't much to report on either the 2700X or the 8700K, so the GPUs on the 2700X can deliver maximum performance, at least within a few frames.

Surprisingly, in the latest version of World of Tanks, the Ryzen 7 2700X was a whisker faster than the 8700K, and this was observed for all three configurations. The game was recently updated to take advantage of multi-core processors and was developed with Ryzen in mind. This is a promising result for AMD users.

Bottom line

Overall, we see fairly balanced performance in 2019. Nvidia appears to have improved driver compatibility with AMD processors, and we are now seeing consistently high frame rates on Ryzen-based CPUs, at least compared to an AMD GPU with similar functions.

As expected with titles like Apex Legends, Forza Horizon 4, Fortnite, Metro Exodus and Just Cause 4, the performance delta was low between 2700X and 8700K. Of course, we tested at 1440p, which tends to be a bit more GPU-bound even with GTX 1080 Ti-class GPUs. The purpose, however, was clear: this was more of a system benchmark than a single-component test trying to remove bottlenecks that could limit the performance of the hardware under investigation.

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