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AMD Ryzen 5000 series CPUs get reviewed

by on05 November 2020

Review roundup: Plenty of performance but a higher price tag

The embargo on reviews for AMD's first Ryzen 5000 series desktop CPU SKUs have been lifted and we now have a chance to see how well these four SKUs, the Ryzen 9 5950X, Ryzen 9 5900X, Ryzen 7 5800X, and the Ryzen 5 5600X, perform in benchmarks, games, and applications.

In case you missed it earlier last month, AMD has announced its new Ryzen 5000 series desktop CPUs based on Zen 3 CPU architecture. With four SKUs in the new Ryzen 5000 series lineup, all available on November 5th, AMD is claiming the best gaming CPU title, bringing new architecture improvements, features, and a 19 percent increase in performance-per-clock.

According to Mark Papermaster, AMD's Chief Technology Officer and Executive Vice President of Technology and Engineering, in addition to a 19 percent IPC uplift compared to the previous generation, Zen 3 has a slightly different layout, and while it still comes with an 8-core structure, each of these eight cores shares 32MB of L3 cache, rather the four cores per 16MB of L3 cache on the Zen 2 architecture. This also means accelerated core and cache communication for gaming, reduction in effective memory latency, and more.

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As noted, AMD has launched a total of four SKUs in the Ryzen 5000 series desktop CPU lineup, covering most market segments. These include the Ryzen 5 5600X, Ryzen 7 5800X, Ryzen 9 5900X, and the new flagship, the Ryzen 9 5950X, all of which should be available on retail/e-tail shelves as of today, November 5th.

Performance is impressive and justifies the higher price tag

All four SKUs are available and we are looking at slightly higher prices compared to the previous generation, something that most reviewers have noticed.

We'll start with the new flagship, the $799-priced Ryzen 9 5950X, a 16-core/32-thread 72MB total cache behemoth working at 3.4GHz base and up to 4.9GHz Boost CPU clcoks. It trades blows with Intel's Core i9-10980XE. Bear in mind Intel's CPU has two more cores, and is slightly more expensive.

AMD's Ryzen 5000 series CPUs are the first desktop CPUs to break the 600 point mark in the single-threaded Cinebench R20 benchmark, which is quite an achievement, especially considering that single-threaded performance was never AMD's forte. The Ryzen 5950X gets just over 640 points in single-threaded and over 10,000 points in a multi-threaded Cinebench R20 benchmark.

Obviously, in gaming, some of the other Ryzen 5000 series CPUs are a better choice, simply because there is no way you can get all 16-cores to work and that is where 5800X or even 5600X shine, offering similar performance at a much lower price. AMD markets the Ryzen 9 5950X as the best CPU for creators and gamers, as it shows its true power in applications rather than games.

The $549-priced Ryzen 9 5900X, which is a 12-core/24-thread SKU, working at 3.7GHz base and 4.8GHz Boost clocks, and come with 70MB of total cache. It goes against the Intel Core i9-10900K, at least with the price.

The third SKU is the Ryzen 7 5800X, a $449-priced 8-core/16-thread SKU working at 3.8GHz base and up to 4.7GHz Boost CPU clocks, same 105W TDP as the 5950X and the 5900X, but only with 36MB of cache. Price-wise, it does not have a match on Intel's side, and the closest one is the $380-priced Core i7-10700K, which, although has a higher TDP, holds its ground well in games, but not in applications, where AMD shows its true strength.

The fourth SKU is probably the most impressive one as the Ryzen 5 5600X is the only SKU in the Ryzen 5000 series that comes with a cooler (Wraith Stealth) and is the only one with a 65W TDP, at least for now. This is a 6-core/12-thread SKU working at 3.7GHz base and 4.6GHz Boost CPU clocks, 35MB of total cache, and a great $299 price tag, matching that of the Core i7-10700.

Aside from obvious performance improvements coming from the new Zen 3 architecture, the Ryzen 5 5600X actually manage to outperform the 8-core Zen 2 Ryzen 7 3800X, in almost every way, and in applications and benchmark tests, it is close to the Core i7-10700K and Core i9-10900 CPUs. In games, it holds its ground well, being relatively close to higher-priced Ryzen 5000 series SKUs as well as Intel's 10th generation Comet Lake desktop CPUs.

Where it really shines is the performance-per-Watt and performance-per-buck, giving a lot with its 65W TDP and $299 price tag.

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AMD Zen shows its true power

Most reviews agree that AMD has delivered a great product series with its Zen 3-based Ryzen 5000 series desktop processors, bringing huge generational improvement, better efficiency, and more.

The new series fits into existing 400 and 500 series AM4 motherboards, so those upgrading will get the best deal.

Overclocking is a whole different chapter as, as far as we could see, there is no point as manual overclocking does not yield any significant gains, so you are better off with AMD's automatic overclocking.

AMD has finally got close to Intel in gaming and offers similar performance and while Intel might be still holding the throne with its 10th generation Core i9 and Core i7 CPUs, the performance difference is negligible and AMD has a lot more to offer on the platform side.

AMD did great with its Zen 3 architecture and we are looking forward to the rest of the Ryzen 5000 series lineup as well as AMD's upcoming Radeon 6000 series graphics card launch. As AMD pointed out, Zen 4 architecture is in-design and coming on 5nm so AMD is gaining ground with solid roadmaps and great generational improvements across the board.

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Here are some of the reviews around. 

- - AMD Zen 3 Ryzen Deep Dive Review: 5950X, 5900X, 5800X and 5600X Tested

- - AMD Ryzen 5 5600X Review, AMD Ryzen 5 5800X Review, AMD Ryzen 5 5900X Review

- - AMD Ryzen 9 5950X And 5900X CPU Review: Zen 3 Dominates

- - AMD Ryzen 9 5950X Review: Total Domination

- - AMD Ryzen 9 5950X and Ryzen 9 5900X: The best Ryzens ever

- - AMD Ryzen 9 5950X and 5900X Review: Zen 3 Breaks the 5 GHz Barrier

- - AMD Ryzen 9 5900X (Zen 3) CPU Review, AMD Ryzen 9 5600X (Zen 3) CPU Review

- - Ryzen 5000 Review: The best consumer CPU we've ever seen

- - AMD Ryzen 9 5900X and Ryzen 9 5950X Review


Last modified on 06 November 2020
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