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Gaming Performance Comparison

Recommended System Requirements
Game Core i9-7980XE 18-Core 2.6GHz Ryzen 7 2700X
Hitman 3 56% 37%
Cyberpunk 2077 68% 53%
Assassins Creed: Valhalla 56% 37%
FIFA 21 70% 56%
Grand Theft Auto VI 47% 23%
Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War 69% 54%
Resident Evil 8 64% 48%
Genshin Impact 75% 64%
Far Cry 6 49% 26%
The Medium 44% 19%

In terms of overall gaming performance, the Intel Core i9-7980XE 18-Core 2.6GHz is massively better than the AMD Ryzen 7 2700X when it comes to running the latest games. This also means it will be less likely to bottleneck more powerful GPUs, allowing them to achieve more of their gaming performance potential.

The Ryzen 7 2700X was released less than a year after the Core i9-7980XE 18-Core, and so they are likely to have similar levels of support, and similarly optimized performance when running the latest games.

Both CPUs exhibit very powerful performance, so it probably isn't worth upgrading from one to the other, as both are capable of running even the most demanding games at the highest settings (assuming they are accompanied by equivalently powerful GPUs).

The Core i9-7980XE 18-Core has 10 more cores than the Ryzen 7 2700X. 18 cores is probably excessive if you mean to just run the latest games, as games are not yet able to harness this many cores. The cores in the Ryzen 7 2700X is more than enough for gaming purposes. However, if you intend on running a server with the Core i9-7980XE 18-Core, it would seem to be a decent choice.

The Core i9-7980XE 18-Core has 20 more threads than the Ryzen 7 2700X. Both the Core i9-7980XE 18-Core and the Ryzen 7 2700X use hyperthreading. The Core i9-7980XE 18-Core has 2 logical threads per physical core and the Ryzen 7 2700X has 2.

Multiple threads are useful for improving the performance of multi-threaded applications. Additional cores and their accompanying thread will always be beneficial for multi-threaded applications. Hyperthreading will be beneficial for applications optimized for it, but it may slow others down. For games, the number of threads is largely irrelevant, as long as you have at least 2 cores (preferably 4), and hyperthreading can sometimes even hit performance.

More important for gaming than the number of cores and threads is the clock rate. Problematically, unless the two CPUs are from the same family, this can only serve as a general guide and nothing like an exact comparison, because the clock cycles per instruction (CPI) will vary so much.

The Core i9-7980XE 18-Core and Ryzen 7 2700X are not from the same family of CPUs, so their clock speeds are by no means directly comparable. Bear in mind, then, that while the Ryzen 7 2700X has a 1.1 GHz faster frequency, this is not always an indicator that it will be superior in performance, despite frequency being crucial when trying to avoid GPU bottlenecking. In this case, however, the difference is probably a good indicator that the Core i9-7980XE 18-Core is superior.

Aside from the clock rate, the next-most important CPU features for PC game performance are L2 and L3 cache size. Faster than RAM, the more cache available, the more data that can be stored for lightning-fast retrieval. L1 Cache is not usually an issue anymore for gaming, with most high-end CPUs eking out about the same L1 performance, and L2 is more important than L3 - but L3 is still important if you want to reach the highest levels of performance. Bear in mind that although it is better to have a larger cache, the larger it is, the higher the latency, so a balance has to be struck.

The Core i9-7980XE 18-Core has a 14336 KB bigger L2 cache than the Ryzen 7 2700X, which means that it, at worst, wins out in this area, and at best, will provide superior gaming performance and will work much better with high-end graphics cards.

The maximum Thermal Design Power is the power in Watts that the CPU will consume in the worst case scenario. The lithography is the semiconductor manufacturing technology being used to create the CPU - the smaller this is, the more transistors that can be fit into the CPU, and the closer the connections. For both the lithography and the TDP, it is the lower the better, because a lower number means a lower amount of power is necessary to run the CPU, and consequently a lower amount of heat is produced.

The Ryzen 7 2700X has a 70 Watt lower Maximum TDP than the Core i9-7980XE 18-Core, and was created with a 2 nm smaller manufacturing technology. What this means is the Ryzen 7 2700X will consume significantly less power and consequently produce less heat, enabling more prolonged computational tasks with fewer adverse effects. This will lower your yearly electricity bill significantly, as well as prevent you from having to invest in extra cooling mechanisms (unless you overclock).

CPU Core Details

CPU CodenameSkylakeZen+
MoBo SocketSocket 2066Socket AM4
Notebook CPUnono
Release Date25 Sep 201730 Apr 2018
CPU LinkGD LinkGD Link

CPU Technical Specifications

CPU Cores18vs8
CPU Threads36vs16
Clock Speed2.6 GHzvs3.7 GHz
Turbo Frequency4.2 GHzvs4.3 GHz
Max TDP165 Wvs95 W
Lithography14 nmvs12 nm
Bit Width64 Bitvs64 Bit
Max Temperature94°Cvs-
Virtualization Technologynovsno

CPU Cache and Memory

L1 Cache Size1152 KBvs512 KB
L2 Cache Size18432 KBvs4096 KB
L3 Cache Size24.75 MBvs16 MB
Max Memory Size-vs64 GB
Memory Channels-vs4
ECC Memory Supportnovsno

CPU Graphics

Base GPU Frequency-vs-
Max GPU Frequency-vs-
Displays Supported-vs-

CPU Package and Version Specifications

Package Size52.5 mm 45 mmvs-
PCIe Revision-vs-
PCIe Configurations-vs-

Gaming Performance Value

Performance Value

CPU Mini Review

Mini ReviewThe Intel Core i9-7980XE 18-Core 2.6GHz is a high-end desktop (HEDT) CPU based on a refinement of the 14nm+ Skylake X microarchitecture. It is competing against AMD's 1st Gen Ryzen Threadripper processors. It offers 18 physical cores (36 logical), initially clocked at 3.6GHz, which may go up to 4.4GHz using 1 cores with Turbo Boost 3.0, or 4.2 GHz across 2 cores. All core boost clock speeds of 4.1 GHz are possible across all 18 Cores simultaneously. The i9-7980XE has 24.75MB of L3 Cache. Among its many features, HyperThreading, Turbo Boost 3.0, and Virtualization are activated. As an 'Extreme' variant, this processor has its multiplier unlocked and overclocking is possible. This Intel Core i9-7980XE 18-Core 2.6GHz CPU offers the fastest desktop performance from a 2017 CPU and will not be the bottleneck in any modern gaming PC. It will be able to play all modern games comfortably on ultra graphics performance at any supported resolution without being a hindrance to the accompanying GPU.The AMD Ryzen 7 2700X 8-Core 3.7GHz is a high-end CPU based on the 12nm Zen+ microarchitecture. It offers 8 physical cores (16 threads), initially clocked at 3.7GHz base clock and 4.3GHz boost with an unlocked multiplier for overclocking, and 16MB of L3 Cache. Among its many features are Simultaneous Multithreading, Cool n Quiet, CoolCore Technology, Extended Frequency Range (XFX) 2.0, Pure Power and Precision Boost 2.0. This CPU is likely to offer exceptional computational performance and will not be the bottleneck in any modern gaming PC. It will be able to play all modern games comfortably on high/ultra graphics performance without being a hindrance to the accompanying GPU.