AGESA resolves temperature control issues causing Ryzen 7000 burnout

Igor's Lab has reported that AMD's new Ryzen 7000 wear patch firmware, AGESA ComboAM5 Patch, addresses further errors surrounding Ryzen 7000’s temperature control system. The new combined patch now sets a mandatory SoC voltage limit of 1.3V and incorporates new SMU error corrections to ensure processors do not exceed their temperature specifications.

AMD has not provided specific details about the issue, but apparently there were optimization issues (in previous AGESA microcode updates) surrounding the temperature control system within Ryzen 7000's SMU, causing the chip to malfunction when it reached TJmax (i.e., its temperature ceiling). We do not know the scope of potential damage this caused, but it is very likely that this SMU error caused Ryzen 7000 burns along with dangerous SoC voltages.

The particular issue related to Ryzen 7000 is the CBS SMU_COMMON 'PROCHOT Control' and PROCHOT Deasertion Ramp Time. The former is a thermal safety mechanism that protects the processor from overheating when the processor reaches its thermal target limit. The SMU will issue a PROCHOT signal that will reduce the processor’s power and frequency to stay below the thermal threshold and avoid potential damage.

The latter is the opposite of the former mechanism, allowing the CPU to increase power and frequency when the thermal limit is not reached (and the PROCHOT signal is inactive). This system is time-based, so the processor can gradually increase power and clock speed when there is enough temperature headroom. This is a critical SMU feature to prevent CPU clock speeds from bouncing around due to temperature fluctuations, resulting in inconsistent performance.

(Image credit: Igor’s Lab - AMD)

According to AMD's patch notes in Igor's report, both mechanisms had no effect on Ryzen 7000 processors with previous AGESA code updates. We do not know exactly what this means, but it seems that the SMU allowed the CPU to exceed TJmax at least a little and was somehow causing performance issues with the CPU below TJmax.

Once again, we do not know how big of a problem this has become. However, this is a big enough issue to highly recommend that all Ryzen 7000 users update their motherboard BIOS/UEFI to a version with AMD's AGESA ComboAM5 patch as soon as possible. The firmware update also provides many other error fixes, including improved boot times, deep sleep fixes, curve optimization fixes

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