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Intel VS Amd (stability vs raw performance)

Short and sweet, every benchmark I have seen says AMD is more bang for the buck, in some cases even outright superior.

However, all these obscure stories of AMD driver issues or firmware bugs etc scare me. I don’t want an amazing chip and rock solid board that the USB suddenly drops out due to drivers etc.

I realize these particular problems may be fixed, but at the end of the day I’m okay with second place speed if I get stability.

Am I over cautious? Welcome suggestions.

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Perhaps I’m an exception, though I feel I’m not. I’ve been using Ryzen since before it officially launched and have experienced no issues with drivers or firmware. Updates work as they should, platform upgrades drop in without issue, and hardware features don’t produce strange behaviour. I used the same X370 board for nearly 4 years; 3 generations of CPU, and only just updated to a newer model for Zen 3. Perhaps early on when XMP wasn’t quite worked out, or vendors were supplementing I/O on boards with third party controllers to eek out design advantages there was an argument to be cautious. I suppose if you want to dig deep enough you’ll always find that a specific platform has issues, be it Intel, AMD, nVidia, VIA, Qualcomm, etc.

Niche use cases could expose a platform to be unsuitable for your needs, but I wouldn’t flag that as a stability problem.

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There is a benefit to using the boards the platforms are qualified for. Aib partners of amd seem to do ess testing of the fringe or lower end boards. See also usb ports problems.

But like you my experiences have been mostly pretty good. I’ve got a psu that can reproduce the idle bug reliably and a nondeterministic threadripper and an x570 mobo that’s sketch af but these are hardware defect one-offs that happen sometimes.

Sometimes people suffer with defective stuff of are one of the edge cases because they got a less well tested board

Happens on intel too tho. I’ve got a 7980xe that’s temperamental and some 5000 and 6000 series intel CPUs that are fine only on high end boards.

I had one 9900k with bad pcie links and had to get it rmad

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My take is that you’re being overly cautious. Have I had some minor issues with my AMD builds? Yes. And mostly they’ve been my fault. FFS, I’m gaming on Linux full time now as of 2 weeks ago with AMD hardware and it’s fine.

My first self-bought rig was an i5. I gave that to my dad when an opportunity came up to get a new AMD rig. I took it, with an FX-6300, because I wanted the beast of a motherboard I found that could handle my ridiculous 6 storage drive + 2 CD drive setup – and cheaply. I’ve never gone back to Intel. Now, I have a 2nd gen Ryzen and have plans of selling this system off to my roomie when I drop 3k on a brand new build that will be water cooled by the end of the year. This new build, I plan on lasting 5-6 years and it will be with a Ryzen 7 3700X (unless something newer/better/cheaper comes along by Dec).

I don’t wanna fanboy for AMD here but… I have a grudge against NVIDIA/Intel (due to business practices) and when Ryzen first came out, I had to grab a box of tissues. That was good for everyone. The market, the consumer, both companies. So, bias disclaimer and all, but you should be fine.

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Been rocking my AMD system for almost a year and in this year I had this issue twice: once with the Logitech Streamcam (crap audio) and once with a cheapo Aukey USB to SATA enclosure. Once I bought devices that I knew worked with my board (Asus Crosshair VIII Impact) everything went smoothly.
Other than that I can’t say I’ve had any issues with my system that can be attributed to the platform. XMP 3600MHz worked because is on QVL, managed to undervolt the CPU, no random crashes, no USB drop out, no particular standby issues.

This is not a guarantee that you’ll never ever have issues. But I’m hopeful that your experience will be positive. Also most of the USB issues have been addressed by AMD so new drivers + new BIOS should really reduce even further any possible issues.

P.S. if you have a friend with an AMD based PC pay them a visit, bring all your USB stuff and plug them in to see if they will work. Tedious but will reassure you of the outcome if you go AMD.

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Been running Zen2/3 for couple years now and have had minimal issues. Most of those related to Windows OS.

I would not recommend Zen or Zen+.

There are some caveats to using Zen 2/3 (virtualization comes to mind) where intel is just more mature and has better support, but those fall into specific use cases.

By and large, I think the average user has no reason to be concerned about switching to AMD as long as you make sure to do you’re homework.

Even AMD GPU drivers have been pretty solid this generation, apparently. It’s actually a good time to build an all AMD rig.

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I run a mix of Intel and AMD parts in my home and lab, I cant say I have seen much difference in reliability for either.

I was one of the limited number of people who has/had the USB bug on X570 w/ AMD 3000 series, that was fixed on an update and I upgraded to a 5000 series CPU anyway.

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I too had a lot of the same concerns as the OP since I used Intel for so long. I heard the same horror stories…

I’m two to three years in…starting with 2nd gen Ryzen… here’s what I have noticed…

1.) AMD has some amazing magic sauce internally on their CPU’s that really get the most out of the silicon WITHOUT much help from the user… I’m used to overclocking and then maybe under-volting with Intel to get the most out their CPU’s. Yes, Intel’s cores may be a bit stronger in a ALL core overclock, but you can do the same with a AMD chip but then you may loose the PEAK clock AMD’s chips automatically tunes for you if you only need a lesser number of cores.

2.) AMD is constantly updating its Chipset and CPU drivers to get the most out of their silicon. Stability wise, I have personally had NO issues. I have only see improvements to thermals, efficiency and performance with updates and no debilitating problems from not being up to date on drivers/firmware.

3.) Price- AMD is being so competitive now and ALSO their technology is evolving to be more energy efficient and productive (at 7nm silicon). Intel has been pedaling the same 14nm silicon for what… 5 generations now upping the TDP (Power to get more, and more cores etc.). I have a i7-8086K and haven’t felt a need to upgrade that system.

4.) Motherboard sockets, Intel forces new motherboards every two generations or so. AMD’s ecosystem has a much longer cycle of compatibility, you may not get the latest and greatest features, but you have the option depending on your needs offering flexibility. This is nice.

All in all AMD is definitely on par performance wise with Intel at this point I would say. It would be special case scenarios you would notice a difference between the two. If you need productivity AMD is your friend or for multi tasking. For gaming, you would be hard pressed to notice more than a few frames difference between Intel and AMD, besides where games offer scaling based on having more cores…which I think will be coming in the future… so may be a safe investment.

These are my experiences as being a HARDCORE Intel guy for years, I have now built and played with over half a dozen AMD systems and I really like them. The idle temps freaked me out at first compared to intel, then again I was used to a delided, liquid metal application, liquid cooled intel chip. I soon got used to it. Tuning is very different and I’d say not needed on AMD really. The chip already compensates clock speed for temps and power draw automatically… again secret sauce

Bottom line, I really have turned and done a 180 on AMD. I think you would be happy with a AMD purchase these days.

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With a new architecture and platform will always come new bugs pretty much.
Those issues will mostly iron out over time with driver and firmware updates etc.
I think Ryzen is a very good example of how a brand new architecture matures over the years.
It has been getting allot better over the years.
The same counts for intel generally, although intel had a pretty mature platform to begin with.
And recently with the latest generation of cpu’s and Z590 boards,
They finaly innovated with pci-e4.0 support and TB4 and all that.
While Ryzen already supported pci-e4.0 for a while.
And yeah with new technology comes new quirks.

In regards to AMD in my opinion what is very import to keep in mind,
is to not cheap out on a motherboard and a psu depending on the cpu you wanne use on it.
And what your particular goals are with the system.
A motherboard and the psu are pretty much your most important parts of the system you not wanne cheap out on.

To the question " is intel more stable then AMD? "
There is not really a clear answer to that i would say.
Because it really depends on the use case scenario’s.
Both have their strong and weaker points.
AMD Ryzen definitelly has it’s quirks, but so does intel.

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I’ve had no issues to speak of with either Linux or windows on my 2700x system since I built in 2018(?)

But definitely for either platform buy a reputable board from a vendor who does post sale driver updates and support.

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I have not had any issues with any of my ryzen cpus. 1700, 1800x, 2700x, 3900x, 3950x, and now 5950x. I have had issue with other things such as overclock stability. But without overclocking it works perfectly fine.

I remember my x99 system had terrible support for ram and literal crashes until bios updates. Intel is affected by launch bugs and quirks just like amd.

If you follow your motherboards qvl list I would think you would be more okay than using ram that is not officially tested by the motherboard manufacturer.

I have had issues but that was with the 5700xt i have not the cpu. The cpu division at amd is far better off than the gpu one.

I think at this point intel may be more stable, but in the past they have had issues at launch just like amd. I never have had silicon from either amd or intel fail out right on me.

My sister personally has first gen ryzen and she has had no issues with stablity. My brother has am ryzen laptop and has had no issues. He also has a 10 year old amd desktop that is still running and has had no issues that I am aware of.

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Forgive my noobness on the forums, but are there good resources for finding qualified hardware matches? When I window shop I just use PC Part Picker.

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Very helpful. The sceptic in me says that the “extreme edge case” will be something in my daily routine but im just overly negative! lol

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Pcpp is a good choice. Motherboard website qvl which is usually a pdf for ultraconservative paranoia

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Just on that. If you don’t install the AMD platform driver and just use the default Windows 10 drivers, you’re leaving about 10% performance on the table.

It’s definitely worth installing them, but not required.

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