EJ Hardware, a Chinese tech YouTuber, has benchmarked a pair of Hygon C86 3185 processors, which are uncommon outside of China. The Zen-based chips were developed in a joint venture between AMD and Hygon, which obtained x86 and SoC IP licenses to develop chips for the Chinese market.
The C86 series from Hygon includes both 14nm mainstream and server processors, with chips ranging from four to 32 Zen cores. The C86 processors from Hygon are physically identical to AMD’s Ryzen and EPYC chips. The Chinese-made chips should fit into the same AM4 and SP3 sockets, but the processors are soldered to the motherboard in the vast majority of cases.
Last year, the Hygon C86 3185 was released with eight Zen cores and simultaneous multithreading (SMT). It has a base clock of 2 GHz and a boost clock of 3.4 GHz. There’s also an L2 cache of 4MB and an L3 cache of 16MB. If you’re looking for a comparison, the C86 3185 is essentially a slower version of the Ryzen 7 1700X. According to EJ Hardware, the C86 3185 and the Ryzen 7 1700X both have a 95W TDP, however, the former’s power usage peaked at 70W. We already know that the Ryzen 7 1700X is the speedier of the two processors.
The motherboard with the Hygon CPUs was most likely pulled from a W550-H30 workstation system by EJ Hardware. The motherboard had two C86 3185 cores, for a total of 16 first-generation Zen cores. The Ryzen 5 5600X, on the other hand, has six Zen 3 cores with a 3.7 GHz base clock and a 4.6 GHz boost clock. The Hexa-core 7nm processor also boasts twice the L3 cache of the C86 3185 while consuming 30 percent less power.
There are some limitations to being a server motherboard. For starters, the memory frequency is set at DDR4-1866, resulting in the below-average memory performance. There were no options for configuring the memory to run at a faster speed. EJ Hardware couldn’t just tear the chips out and install them in a B450 motherboard because they’re soldered to the motherboard.
The Ryzen 5 5600X dominated single-core performance, as expected. The Hexa-core processor has Zen 3 cores, whereas the C86 3185 still has Zen 1 cores.
In Cinebench R20 and R23, the Ryzen 5 5600X delivered up to 97 percent and 135 percent higher single-core performance than the dual C86 3185, respectively. In Cinebench R20 and R23, the pair of Hygon chips outperformed the Ryzen 5 5600X by 12 percent and 13 percent, respectively, in multi-core tests.
The two C86 3185 were 23 percent and 33 percent faster than the Ryzen 5 5600X in Blender and the x264 HD Benchmark, respectively. The Ryzen 5 5600X, on the other hand, crushed the Hygon team by 59 percent in PCMark 10.
Gaming tests conducted by EJ Hardware revealed that the C86 3185 chips, at least in a two-fold configuration, provide good gaming performance. The processors had no trouble producing great frame rates at 1080p and 4K resolutions when combined with a GeForce RTX 3080 Ti. Only in Cyberpunk 2077 did the Hygon processors struggle.
The performance of Zen 3 is demonstrated by EJ Hardware’s results. In multi-threaded workloads, it takes two gimped Ryzen 7 1700X working together to beat a single Ryzen 5 5600X, and the difference isn’t even substantial. The single-threaded performance of Zen and Zen 3 was, however, night and day. China, on the other hand, isn’t looking for performance; instead, it wants to attain technical self-sufficiency.