Motherboard software bug can accidentally kill AMD Ryzen X3D processors

In short: A clear bug has been found in motherboard management software from several top motherboard manufacturers that makes it incredibly easy to fry your X3D-based AMD processor. We don’t have a schedule yet for when the protections will be installed, so until then, be very careful fiddling with motherboard management software with these chips. One mistake – and your processor can become a brilliant decoration of the table.

Igor’s lab recently stumbled upon a problem while fiddling with the MSI Center. Using an MSI B550 Unify board with an AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D processor, Igor noticed that the software seemed to detect the chip as a standard Ryzen 5xxx which does not have a vertical L3 3D cache.

The extra cache is known to boost gaming performance, but its physical presence also negatively impacts heat dissipation, which is one of the reasons it comes with a lower clock speed than the stock 5800X.

Since the software cannot detect the X3D chip, it treats it like a standard Ryzen 5xxx and allows manipulation of the core multiplier and core voltage almost seamlessly. Intrigued, Igor. played the violin with voltage settings and managed to quickly kill the processor. He didn’t mention how much power was put into the chip to kill it, but Tom’s Hardware notes that the core voltage can be set up to 1.55V.

Even worse, an obvious bug was found in similar control software from ASRock, Asus and Gigabyte.

Just last week, renowned overclocker der8auer tried his hand at overclocking and overclocking an AMD Ryzen 7950X3D. Even with liquid nitrogen, the chip instantly died when the core voltage was set to 1.55v. der8auer barely got out of the BIOS (and without any significant load) before things went awry. Needless to say, he was surprised that he died so quickly.

At the very least, it looks like these extreme core voltage settings should carry a strong warning before users are allowed to apply risky settings.

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