New AMD undervolting tool boosts Ryzen 5000 performance by 10 percent

AMD Ryzen render with orange glow under the chip
(Image credit: AMD)

AMD is preparing an update to its Precision Boost Overdrive toolkit that enables adaptive undervolting for its new smash-hit Ryzen 5000 chips. AMD previewed the tool earlier this month but without any performance claims. As the early December roll out for the new tool approaches, AMD has revealed that adaptive undervolting can boost Ryzen 5000 performance by up to 10 percent.

Due out in early December and known as Curve Optimization, the new tool is designed to enable lower CPU voltages. That in turns means less heat and lower power consumption and, in some circumstances, higher clock speeds.

The tool will require a BIOS revision for 400 and 500-series AMD motherboard chipsets including the AGESA 1180 update. For more information on the specifics of the AGESA update, check out our story from earlier this month. It’s also worth noting that the use of the tool will invalidate the warranty on relevant hardware.

The tool uses internal sensors including workload, temperature and socket limit to adjust the voltage on the fly. AMD says the tool can do this up to 1,000 per second. Curve Optimization also allows users to set maximum parameters for how much adaptive undervolting is allowed.

AMD preps adaptive undervolting tool

AMD's new Curve Optimization tool could boost performance by up to 10 percent (Image credit: AMD)

Of course, manual CPU voltage adjustments have been available in BIOS menus since times of yore. However, along with clock speeds and other variables, digging into voltage settings makes for a pretty complex set of parameters when trying to hand-tune performance.

Your next upgrade

(Image credit: Future)

Best CPU for gaming: the top chips from Intel and AMD
Best graphics card: your perfect pixel-pusher awaits
Best SSD for gaming: get into the game ahead of the rest

Curve Optimization promises to take at least some of the guesswork out of that process. AMD’s example benchmarks suggest the new tool can deliver around two percent more single-thread performance or 10 percent multi-thread performance improvement with the Ryzen 9 5900X compared to a simple fixed undervolt and core frequency increase.

At first the tool will be enabled via BIOS settings. However, AMD plans to add it to the Ryzen Master Windows app for quick and easy access from the desktop. If you own a Ryzen 5000 CPU, look out for new BIOS dumps for your motherboard including the AGESA 1180 update in the next week or two.

Jeremy Laird
Hardware writer

Jeremy has been writing about technology and PCs since the 90nm Netburst era (Google it!) and enjoys nothing more than a serious dissertation on the finer points of monitor input lag and overshoot followed by a forensic examination of advanced lithography. Or maybe he just likes machines that go “ping!” He also has a thing for tennis and cars.