With lots of caveats - AMD can still be ahead even with this tradeoff…
A 7xxx-10xxxx intel part would need to be at ~4.6-4.7GHz all-core to beat the 3970x core-for-core from what I’ve seen…
They are neck-and-neck in terms of GHzXIPC. Starting from scratch you can’t go wrong with AMD right now while, if you do wildly parallel work, you can go wrong with Intel.
I have trouble answering the OP’s question since I need lanes and memory… these impact my applications heavily. Going quad down to dual channel memory is a non-starter for me.
In his place, I’d be sorely tempted to look for a used 7960 or 7980… for now. It’s not nearly as fun and that’s not a knock on AMD at all, but unless your use-case tile rendering, the gains you will get from there to AMD will be small and you already have an x299 and memory, so the upgrade cost is small…
My 3970x is now outperforming my 4.5GHz all-core 7980xe for 16-18 core jobs despite its 4.2GHz all-core speed… however, its not cheap…
For all the trash-talk of geekbench, it tends to reflect my use-case if you look at both numbers. Gains I see here, reflect back on my day-to-day experience. Here’s my table of results as I tuned up the 3970x, but including some results of my 7980xe. The single core tells you how it will game and how DB access for my purposes will behave. The multi-core tells you how multi-core simulations will run.
Couple of results to highlight:
- 14915196 - (7980xe) the bottom-most windows result - that’s a “stock” 7980xe as Asus configured it on “auto”… 5041 single 52090 multi
- 14915220 - (7980xe) the windows result 2 above it is my 4.GHz all-core config 5883, 66169
- 14903610 - (7980xe) last result is the same setup in linux 6173, 76484
- 15140244 - (3970x) - out of the box as Asus configures it with “auto” 5883, 89751
5.15149740 - (3970x) - tuned up to something just beyond what I’d want for DD - voltage higher than I’d like - 6421, 107075
- 15149786 - (3970x) - my DD config now… PBO tuned up, but to “reasonable” power/current levels and temp throttled to 72C or less… 6383, 103135
Both are under similar custom water loop, with 1000W+ dissipation capability.
Before the picture - have you considered a 2nd machine for a VM server? A TR first-gen (getting cheap!)? I run E5-2996v3 xeons I get used from ebay for that sort of thing as well… still very capable even multiple generations back.