AMD ships Ryzen Balanced power plan with latest chipset drivers


— 9:00 AM on April 27, 2017

A few weeks ago, AMD offered Ryzen CPU owners a new power plan option for Windows 10 that tweaked a few settings to better fit the processors' power-saving characteristics. General feedback on the plan seems to have been positive, as AMD has now officially packaged it with its latest chipset drivers.

When AMD first released Ryzen, it recommended that users set Windows to the High Performance power plan in order squeeze every last drop of performance they could out of their processors. Early reviews bore this recommendation out, as specific games didn't perform quite as well under Microsoft's default Balanced plan as they did under High Performance. Unfortunately, while the High Performance plan curtails the aggressive core parking behavior causing the drop in performance, it could also lead to higher power consumption.

AMD's new power plan tries to thread this needle by disabling core parking while retaining some of Microsoft's other power-saving tricks. Gamers and other users shouldn't need to worry about losing too much performance if they switch to the Ryzen Balanced power plan. AMD's internal data suggests that the performance difference between the High Performance and Ryzen Balanced modes is negligible—less than 1% apart in the games they tested.

Now that AMD has had its Ryzen Balanced plan in users' systems for a few weeks, it's made good on its promise to roll it out to general availability. Rather than downloading the plan separately, users can simply grab the latest version of AMD's chipset drivers, which includes the Ryzen Balanced power plan as part of the package. After installation, users will have a new option to select in Windows' power plan menu. Ryzen owners who missed out on the first announcement might want to check out the new update.

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