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TL;DR: AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series performance in Photoshop
The new AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series processors do very well in Photoshop, showing a solid ~20% performance gain overall versus the previous 3000 WX-Series. Comparing them to the Intel Xeon W-3300 line is a bit messier due to how much the Windows power profile affects the performance of those CPUs, but you can expect anywhere from 10% to 30% more performance from the AMD Threadripper PRO 5000WX processors compared to the Intel Xeon W-3300 series.
Adobe Photoshop is a fairly lightly threaded application, which makes monster CPUs like the new AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-series complete overkill in most cases. In fact, due to the fact that higher core count CPUs tend to have slightly lower per-core performance, they will often perform a bit under consumer-grade, lower core count, CPUs in applications like Photoshop.
However, Photoshop is one of the most commonly used secondary applications for a wide range of content creation fields including photography, motion graphics, VFX, and video editing. So, while you are unlikely to even be considering the Threadripper PRO series if Photoshop was the only application you use, we feel that it is still important to know how these workstation-class CPUs perform even in these kinds of lightly threaded applications.
In this article, we will be using our PugetBench for Photoshop benchmark paired with Photoshop 22.3 to examine the performance of the new AMD Threadripper PRO 5000WX CPUs. As a comparison, we will be including the previous generation AMD Threadripper PRO 3000 WX-Series, as well as their primary competition – the Intel Xeon W-3300 series. In addition, we will also throw in the Intel Core i9 12900K. This consumer CPU is not at all in the same class as the Threadripper PRO and Xeon W lines, but it is actually among the fastest CPUs currently available for Photoshop. Because of this, it will operate as a good comparison point for how well the Threadripper Pro 5000WX line compares in terms of pure performance.
If you want to read more about the new Threadripper PRO 5000-WX series and what sets them apart from the previous generation, we recommend checking out our main AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series Content Creation Review. That article includes testing results for a range of other applications including Lightroom Classic, Premiere Pro, After Effects, and Unreal Engine; and also has all the test setup details on the hardware and software side if you want more information on the individual specs for each system.
Raw Benchmark Data
While our benchmark presents various scores based on the performance of each test, we also like to provide individual results for you to examine. If there is a specific task that is a hindrance to your workflow, examining the raw results for that task is going to be much more applicable than the scores that our benchmark calculated.
Feel free to skip to the next sections for our analysis of these results to get a wider view of how each configuration performs.
Benchmark Analysis (Balanced Power Profile)
For a number of the applications we are looking at as a part of our greater Threadripper PRO 5000WX testing, we ended up having to test with two Windows power profiles: the default "Balanced" profile, as well as the "High Performance" power profile. Switching between the two profiles doesn't often result in much of a performance difference for the AMD Threadripper PRO CPUs, but in some cases (including Photoshop) it can make a massive difference for the Intel Xeon W line. To start off, we are going to first look at the performance when using the default "Balanced" power profile.
Compared to the previous Threadripper PRO 3000WX processors, the new 5000WX models are around 15-20% faster overall in Photoshop. That is a pretty decent increase in performance and really shows off what the higher Boost frequency, as well as the IPC (instructions per clock) improvements can get you. Something interesting that is worth pointing out is that the lower core count 5965WX model ended up actually being the fastest of the three new CPUs. Technically, all three of the new Threadripper Pro CPUs have the same maximum Boost clock of 4.5GHz, but that only means that these CPUs could perform the same if only a single core is being used. While Photoshop isn't a very well threaded application by any means, it can use more than just one or two cores, and the way Boost works typically means that lower core count models will end up doing better for lightly threaded applications.
Compared to the Intel Xeon W-3300 processors, the Threadripper PRO 5000WX CPUs range from 10-30% faster depending on the models in question. Or, taking just the top performers from each product line, the Threadripper PRO 5965WX 24 Core is about 13% faster than the Xeon W-3365 32 Core.
Finally, it is worth pointing out that even with the increased boost frequency and improved IPC, the Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series is still about 12% slower than the Intel Core i9 12900K. That is definitely an improvement compared to the Threadripper Pro 3000WX processors, but if all you are looking for is raw performance in Photoshop and don't need the workstation-class features like 128 PCIe 4.0 lanes or more than 128GB of RAM, you are likely better off sticking to a consumer-level CPU.
Overall, with the default Balanced power profile, the AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series has a decent lead over Intel in Photoshop. However, we found through the course of our testing that the Intel Xeon W processors see a significant increase in performance when using the High Performance Windows power profile, so let's see how things shake up if we switch out the power profile.
Benchmark Analysis (High Performance Power Profile)
Using the "High Performance" Windows power profile only has a minor impact on the AMD Threadripper PRO CPUs; resulting in a small 2-5% performance gain on average, which is within the margin of error for this type of test. Because of this, the new Threadripper PRO CPUs are still looking at about a 15-20% performance advantage over the previous generation 3000WX processors.
For the Intel Xeon W-3300 series, however, the W-3335 16 Core and W-3345 24 Core in particular received about a 15% increase in Photoshop performance with the High Performance power profile. This lets Intel make up some ground, but at the matching core count, AMD is still about 16-18% faster overall.
In other words, while changing the power profile does give some of the Intel Xeon W-3300 processors a solid boost in performance, it isn't enough to allow them to overtake the new Threadripper PRO processors.
AMD Threadripper PRO 5965WX vs 3955WX vs Intel Xeon W-3345
In most cases, the new AMD Threadripper PRO 5965WX 24 Core is significantly faster than both the previous generation Threadripper PRO 3955WX 16 Core and the Intel Xeon W-3345 24 Core. The 5965WX 24 Core does have more cores than the 3955WX 16 Core, but since the previous generation does not have a 24 core model, this is the closest comparison we are able to make across the two generations. In any case, with both the default "Balanced" Windows power profile and the "High Performance" profile, the 5965WX is 20% faster than the 3955WX for most tasks in Photoshop.
Compared to the Intel Xeon W-3345, the Threadripper Pro 5965WX is between 20% and 30% faster in Photoshop. The Intel CPU closes the gap slightly if you use the "High Performance" power profile, but it isn't enough for it to catch up to the 5965WX.
AMD Threadripper PRO 5975WX vs 3975WX vs Intel Xeon W-3365
Like the 5965WX, the new AMD Threadripper PRO 5975WX 32 Core is significantly faster than both the previous generation Threadripper PRO 3975WX 32 Core and the Intel Xeon W-3365 32 Core, although to a slightly lesser degree. With both the default "Balanced" Windows power profile and the "High Performance" profile, the 5975WX is roughly 15% faster than the 3975WX for most tasks in Photoshop.
Compared to the Intel Xeon W-3365, the Threadripper Pro 5975WX is between 10% and 15% faster in Photoshop. Unlike many of the other Xeon W models, the W-3365 isn't impacted much by which Windows power profile is used, which means that AMD maintains a similar performance lead regardless of the Windows power settings.
AMD Threadripper PRO 5995WX vs 3995WX
Higher core count CPUs like the new AMD Threadripper PRO 5995WX 64 Core and the previous generation Threadripper PRO 3995WX 64 Core tend to not be quite as fast in lightly threaded applications like Photoshop, even with the increased Boost frequency and IPC gains found on the new Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series.
However, in terms of raw performance in Photoshop, the new 5995WX is around 16-17% faster overall compared to the Threadripper PRO 3995WX. Intel does not have a Xeon W CPU with a comparable core count, although it is worth pointing out that even though the Threadripper PRO 5995WX is slower than the lower core count Threadripper PRO CPUs in Photoshop, it is still roughly 10% faster than the Intel Xeon W-3365 32 Core.
How well do AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series CPUs perform in Photoshop?
The new AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series processors do very well in Photoshop, showing a solid ~20% performance gain overall versus the previous 3000 WX-Series. Comparing them to the Intel Xeon W-3300 line is a bit messier due to how much the Windows power profile affects the performance of those CPUs, but you can expect anywhere from 10% to 30% more performance from the AMD Threadripper PRO 5000WX processors.
It is worth pointing out that if raw performance in Photoshop is your main concern, a consumer-grade CPU (like the AMD Ryzen 5900X or Intel Core i9 12900K) is generally going to get you higher straight performance in lightly threaded applications like Photoshop. There are some workflows where the higher RAM capacity of Threadripper PRO and Xeon W will come into play, but that is a very niche use case. Still, this testing is useful in the sense that Photoshop is an extremely common secondary application for a wide range of workflows, and as such, it is good to evaluate how these processors perform – even if they really aren't the right fit if Photoshop was all you used.
Keep in mind that the benchmark results in this article are strictly for Photoshop and that performance will vary widely in different applications. If your workflow includes other software packages, we highly recommend checking out our AMD Threadripper PRO 5000 WX-Series Content Creation Review article which includes results and links to in-depth testing for a range of other applications including Premiere Pro, After Effects, Lightroom Classic, and DaVinci Resolve.