The big AMD "Zen 3" architecture we've been hearing a lot about is finally here, and we have with us its most affordable part, the 6-core Ryzen 5 5600X. AMD claims that the 5600X is everything an AAA gamer would possibly want, and that the processor shouldn't get in the way of even premium 4K graphics cards. With the "Zen 3" launch, AMD is keeping its promise of rolling out a new microarchitecture every year since the 2017 debut of the original "Zen." What's astonishing, though, is that AMD has managed to deliver an IPC increase with each microarchitecture launched since. In contrast, Intel has been stuck with the same IPC for the desktop platform for half a decade, and its "Rocket Lake" processor reportedly won't launch until March 2021.
The "Zen 3" microarchitecture heralds a significant 19% IPC increase over "Zen 2," which already had a transformative impact on the desktop processor market. Higher IPC means higher single-threaded performance, which means games, traditionally less parallelized than productivity, tend to benefit more. An IPC increase of the kind being marketed by AMD would mean that "Zen 3" beats Intel at gaming given "Zen 2" wasn't too far behind "Comet Lake" for gaming. At the higher-end, with the Ryzen 9 series, AMD offers more cores to the dollar with 12-core and 16-core parts, but things are evenly matched between the Ryzen 5 5600X and Intel Core i5-10600K, with both being 6-core/12-thread parts.
The biggest under-the-hood change with "Zen 3" is AMD practically doing away with the 4-core CCX by putting all eight cores of its chiplet into a single 8-core CCX. This means all cores within a chiplet can talk to each other at lower latency, and access a larger 32 MB shared L3 cache. The 5600X is carved out by disabling two out of eight cores. AMD's Ryzen 5000 processors still implement a multi-chip module, with this generation's MCM being codenamed "Vermeer."
AMD is debuting the Ryzen 5 5600X at a staggering $299, which is the highest launch price ever for a Ryzen 5-series processor, higher than what you'd pay for an 8-core 3700X. AMD states that the 5600X should have everything you need to build a gaming desktop for any resolution. Unlike the 5800X and 5900X which lack stock cooling solutions, AMD is including a cooler with the Ryzen 5. The chip has the same 95 W TDP as its predecessor, the 3600X, and is built on the same 7 nm silicon fabrication node. In this review, we put the Ryzen 5 5600X through our wide selection of gaming and productivity tests to tell you whether six "Zen 3" cores are worth more than eight "Zen 2" ones.
|Price||Cores / |
|Ryzen 5 1600X||$150||6 / 12||3.6 GHz||4.0 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 2600X||$170||6 / 12||3.6 GHz||4.2 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i5-9400F||$145||6 / 6||2.9 GHz||4.1 GHz||9 MB||65 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-10400F||$170||6 / 12||2.9 GHz||4.3 GHz||12 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 7 1700||$170||8 / 16||3.0 GHz||3.7 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 1700X||$200||8 / 16||3.4 GHz||3.8 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Core i5-10500||$250||6 / 12||3.1 GHz||4.5 GHz||12 MB||65 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 5 3600||$200||6 / 12||3.6 GHz||4.2 GHz||32 MB||65 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 2700||$330||8 / 16||3.2 GHz||4.1 GHz||16 MB||65 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i5-8400||$205||6 / 6||2.8 GHz||4.0 GHz||9 MB||65 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Ryzen 7 2700X||$215||8 / 16||3.7 GHz||4.3 GHz||16 MB||105 W||Zen||12 nm||AM4|
|Core i3-8350K||$200||4 / 4||4.0 GHz||N/A||8 MB||91 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-8600K||$220||6 / 6||3.6 GHz||4.3 GHz||9 MB||95 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-9600K||$200||6 / 6||3.7 GHz||4.6 GHz||9 MB||95 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i5-10600K||$275||6 / 12||4.1 GHz||4.8 GHz||12 MB||125 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 5 3600X||$240||6 / 12||3.8 GHz||4.4 GHz||32 MB||95 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 3600XT||$240||6 / 12||3.8 GHz||4.5 GHz||32 MB||95 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 5 5600X||$300||6 / 12||3.7 GHz||4.6 GHz||32 MB||65 W||Zen 3||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 1800X||$250||8 / 16||3.6 GHz||4.0 GHz||16 MB||95 W||Zen||14 nm||AM4|
|Core i7-8700K||$380||6 / 12||3.7 GHz||4.7 GHz||12 MB||95 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i7-9700K||$380||8 / 8||3.6 GHz||4.9 GHz||12 MB||95 W||Coffee Lake||14 nm||LGA 1151|
|Core i7-10700K||$380||8 / 16||3.8 GHz||5.1 GHz||16 MB||125 W||Comet Lake||14 nm||LGA 1200|
|Ryzen 7 3700X||$325||8 / 16||3.6 GHz||4.4 GHz||32 MB||65 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 3800X||$340||8 / 16||3.9 GHz||4.5 GHz||32 MB||105 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 3800XT||$380||8 / 16||3.9 GHz||4.7 GHz||32 MB||105 W||Zen 2||7 nm||AM4|
|Ryzen 7 5800X||$450||8 / 16||3.8 GHz||4.7 GHz||32 MB||105 W||Zen 3||7 nm||AM4|