Velocity Micro CEO: AMD Delayed Ryzen 3950X To Aid With Supply

'It's simply a matter of demand outstretching the supply that had been expected,' Velocity Micro's Randy Copeland says of AMD's decision to delay the launch of its 16-core Ryzen 9 3950X processor to November.


AMD said it's delaying the launch of its 16-core Ryzen 9 3950X desktop processor to November, when the chipmaker will also release the first processors in its third-generation Ryzen Threadripper series.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company made the announcement Friday, saying it delayed the Ryzen 9 3950X to focus on "meeting the strong demand" for its existing third-generation Ryzen processors, which is currently headlined by the 12-core Ryzen 9 3900X.

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When AMD first announced the Ryzen 9 3950X in June, the chipmaker said it would release it in September as the "world's first 16-core mainstream desktop processor."

Randy Copeland, CEO of Velocity Micro, a Richmond, Va.-based system builder and AMD partner, said AMD is likely seeing higher demand than it expected for the 16-core processors and decided to hold back for two months to ensure it had enough supply when the 3950X launches.

"It's simply a matter of demand outstretching the supply that had been expected," he said.

AMD declined to provide any further comment beyond the statement it made.

Copeland said Velocity Micro is seeing strong demand signals for the Ryzen 3950X based on customers who are visiting the web page for the company's AMD-based Raptor Z55a system—which currently supports the lower-core Ryzen 3900X as the highest option—and holding off from making a purchase.

"We know there are many waiting for the 3950X," he said.

Multiple reports have pointed to shortages of the third-generation Ryzen since the consumer desktop processors launched in July, sometimes resulting in third-party sellers listing SKUs for inflated prices.

But Copeland, who has previously said his system builder business brings in roughly $25 million annually, said he hasn't experienced any supply issues so far with AMD.

"From a supply standpoint, they have been pushing us for forecasts to ensure we don’t have any shortages," he said, adding that Velocity Micro uses sales, web traffic and quote requests to determine forecasts.

Overall, Copeland said, Ryzen 3000 sales have exceeded expectations, but Intel's Core i9-9900K, which has a lower core count and a higher clock frequency than the Ryzen 3900X, continues to be the company's best-selling processor, the CEO added.

"Those customers appreciate frequency over core count. They are looking for the dragster," he said.

When it comes to Velocity Micro's next five best-selling processors, however, it's all AMD, with Ryzen 3900X coming in at No. 2, according to Copeland.

"Ryzen is more of a do-it-all," he said.

While Copeland is seeing a lot of excitement for the Ryzen 3950X, he said there is also ample anticipation for AMD's third-generation Ryzen Threadripper series, which the chipmaker confirmed for an initial November launch with a 24-core processor.

The stated core count is lower than the 32 cores that leaks and rumors have indicated for the Threadripper 3000 processors. However, AMD said November would only mark the introduction of the new processor line's "initial members" targeting the high-end desktop market.

"Threadripper is the most exciting thing I see in their forecast going forward," Copeland said. "I just think they're going to be incredible SKUs."