Intel Core i9 9900K vs. AMD Ryzen 9 3900X Linux Gaming Performance

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Gaming on 29 August 2019. Page 1 of 6. 22 Comments

Here is our most extensive look yet at the AMD Ryzen 9 3900X Linux gaming performance up against the Intel Core i9 9900K while testing the latest Linux drivers with the Radeon RX 5700 XT as well as the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 and RTX 2080 graphics cards. Beyond testing all the benchmark-friendly Linux-native and Steam Play OpenGL/Vulkan games, the performance-per-Watt and performance-per-dollar of the tested systems are also being covered.

The Ryzen 9 3900X vs. Core i9 9900K gaming performance on Windows has been a hot race and it's quite competitive as well on Linux both for native OpenGL/Vulkan ports as well as for Windows games running on Linux via Valve's Steam Play paired with DXVK for mapping D3D11 to Vulkan.

The Core i9 9900K at the end of August is retailing still for $489~500 USD with its eight cores / sixteen threads, 3.6GHz base frequency, and 5.0GHz turbo frequency for this 95 Watt part. The Ryzen 9 3900X seems to have a difficult time staying in stock at US retailers but most online listings are pegging it currently at $511~540 USD for its 12 cores / 24 threads, 3.8GHz base frequency, and 4.6GHz turbo frequency for this 105 Watt part.

With both systems, they were equipped with the same memory (2 x 8GB GSKILL DDR4-3600), storage, and other components aside from the motherboard and CPU. The operating system in use was Ubuntu 19.04 with the Linux 5.3 kernel while the NVIDIA driver was their newest 435.17 beta driver and on the AMD side was Mesa 19.2-devel built against LLVM 9.0 SVN.

Ryzen 9 3900X vs. Core i9 9900K Linux Gaming Benchmarks

The Radeon RX 5700 XT and GeForce RTX 2070 were tested given their close proximity as well as tossing in the RTX 2080 as a higher-tier part. During testing of the two processors and three graphics cards, the Phoronix Test Suite was monitoring the AC power consumption of the overall system in real-time via a WattsUp Pro power meter. Performance-per-dollar metrics were also provided based on the current pricing of the CPUs and GPUs tested.

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