It is a combination of many factors. Mostly related to the things you have seen replied above. For Idle and low usage Threadripper simply uses a notch more power for the simple fact that is has two physical active dies. Two Ryzen 1800 die 8-cores if you will. Each of them uses roughly 40 Watts in Idle and you cannot turn one completely off, it's just there. Hence there's always a 40 Watt extra premium. For the higher TDP. It's weird yes, but the TDP is based on allcore-baseclock which is higher for Threadripper. However as it turns out, Threadripper dies have been binned, it is AMDs best 2% The advantage here is that they can do more with less. And less in the case is the amount of voltage needed per core. Voltage is relative to wattage is relative to heat. You can tell that Intel needs more volts per core as the second you tweak, the power consumption goes out of control, while up-to ~4 GHz AMD needs roughly 1.325 Volts on the CPU depending on ASIC quality. I noticed that some procs even can do an allcore 4 GHz at 1.275 Volts which is insanely little with 16 cores when you think about it. Intel however remains king of high frequencies with a small amount of threads.