AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X and MSI X399 Gaming Pro Carbon AC Review


AMD with Ryzen have changed the CPU market and bring back the competition to Intel’s domination, now with Threadripper have done the same with the high-end market as well. The Threadripper has proven to be a powerhouse with everything an enthusiast or semiprofessional need. AMD claims that Threadripper CPUs use the top 5% of Ryzen dies, so it’s no surprise the 1950X has the highest boost frequencies among AMD’s Ryzen core lineup includes Ryzen 3, 5, and 7. As an enthusiast CPU AMD also added lower level customization with their Ryzen Master software, AMD added two options. One of them allows for memory to be in distributed or localized modes to the cores, the former better for content creators. The Gaming mode allows for legacy operation, where the CPU turns off one die and routes all four memory channels to a single die, cutting core count in half, but making it easy for games to take advantage of the cores in a right way. AMD has a Creator Mode set as default, and a Gaming Mode next to it, so you can easily switch between the two.

Another very impotent aspect of the high-end platform is the expansion, and AMD has provided more than enough PCIe lane on Threadripper total of (64-4) 60 for your use, which means enough lanes for GPUs and other expansion cards. The Ryzen Threadripper 1950X is priced at $999 which much cheaper than Intel’s offering. Compared to the Core i9-7900X, the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X has 6 more cores, 16 more PCIe lanes, and ECC support for the same price. The Core i9-7960X and Core i9-7980XE are too expansive to talk about, you can buy the Threadripper 1950X with an X399 motherboard cheaper than Core i9-7960X $1,699 price tag.

So the bottom line is if you have a workload that can take advantage all those cores and threads than Ryzen Threadripper 1950X is made for you. This not made gaming but if you want some multitasking like streaming while playing than Threadripper might make sense. For 3D rendering, video editing or CPU intensive workload, there is no way to overlook the extraordinary multi-threaded performance numbers that AMD’s Threadripper 1950X can offer. For that AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X getting our Performance Award.


AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X
9.3 / 10 Overall
  • Excellent multi-threaded performance
  • Quad-channel memory support
  • ECC compatibility
  • Good thermal performance compare to power draw
  • PCIe 3.0 connectivity total 60+4 lane
  • Soldered IHS (heatspreader)
  • Cons
  • Power draw is very high
  • Limited overclocking
  • Build Quality9.5


    The MSI X399 GAMING PRO CARBON AC is a well-built board that offers a balance VRM design with airflow optimized VRM heatsink and provide a bracket for a VRM fan add more cooling if needed. The board features an all-black design with Carbon fiber and silver accents that can go with any builds and if someone want a different look than the heatsink plans can change out the carbon fiber panels for gold or silver panels. Also, RGB LEDs are also integrated into the motherboard and provide accent lighting, and there are four pins RGB header on the board for case lighting as well. All of which makes X399 GAMING PRO CARBON AC very customizable for any builds.


    MSI also added metal brackets to all DIMM slots and PCIe 16x slots for more strength and rigidity. All three M.2 slots also get an M.2 Shield for protection and cooling. All of which makes you much more confident when installing or handling the motherboard. The X399 GAMING PRO CARBON AC also ready for water-cooling with dedicated water pump PIN header supports up to 2 AMP, there also six fan headers that support both DC or PWM mode and fully controllable in BIOS or software.


    Performance wise MSI X399 GAMING PRO CARBON AC is no slouch either, with 10 phase digital power design and MSI’s DDR4 Boost (Optimized traces and a fully isolated memory circuitry) offer great stability with overclocks and allows us achieved 4GHz with 3000MHz memory, not bad at all. The network performance was also excellent both wire and wireless thanks to Intel’s NIC. USB 3.1 was powered by the latest and greatest ASMedia ASM3142 so that’s also great. MSI also implement USB 3.0 re-drivers to improve USB signaling quality for their “VR-enabled” USB ports. Storage also no slouch with three high-speed NMVe M.2 SSD slots.

    Overall, MSI X399 GAMING PRO CARBON AC offers everything that anyone need, good performance, build quality and looks only thing I didn’t like is the odd placement of type-C internal header and those two straight SATA ports which not right angle like rest of the SATA ports, I am a bit confused as to why MSI decided to place them like that. That said, these are not a deal breaker and not affect the functionality of performance. We are very impressed with X399 GAMING PRO CARBON AC and definitely worth considering if you want the solid X399 motherboard that will serve you years to come. It deserves our Editor Choice Award.

    MSI X399 Gaming Pro Carbon AC
    9.1 / 10 Overall
  • Neutral aesthetics with all black
  • Good VRM heatsink
  • Three M.2 slot
  • M.2 Shields
  • Robust build quality
  • Solid Overclocking
  • Feature rich software suite
  • 10Gbps USB 3.1 Type-C and A
  • RGB lighting
  • Intel-powered AC WiFi card
  • Lots of fan header
  • Built-in RGB header
  • Cons
  • Odd placement of type-C internal header
  • Two straight SATA ports look Odd
  • Little expensive
  • Build Quality9.5