AMD just announced its new lineup of Ryzen 5000 series processors for desktops, which are also the first chips from the company set to feature its next-gen Zen 3 architecture and represent the biggest jump for AMD’s desktop chips yet.
AMD is also setting expectations high, promising that the new Ryzen 5900X is nothing short of “the world’s best gaming CPU.” The new chips will be available starting at $299 for the entry-level Ryzen 5 5600X model on November 5th.
Like last year’s Zen 2-based Ryzen 3000 desktop chips these new models replace, the new 5000 series processors are still using AMD’s 7nm process but offer a 19 percent increase in instructions per cycle, along with a complete redesign of the chip layout and a higher max boost speed. (The new chipsets are jumping straight to Ryzen 5000 series branding to avoid any confusion of the new Zen 3 chips with the Zen 2-based Ryzen 4000 desktop chips that AMD released over the summer for prebuilt systems.)
All together, AMD says that simply replacing a Zen 2 CPU with a comparable Zen 3 model —the new chips are compatible with older motherboards after a firmware update — will result in an average 26 percent improvement for customers, all while keeping TDP and core counts the same.
AMD is starting with four new Zen 3 CPUs. There’s a top-of-the-line Ryzen 9 5950X model with 16 cores, 32 threads, and a max boost speed of 4.9GHz for $799; the $549 Ryzen 9 5900X, with 12 cores, 32 threads, and a max boost speed of 4.8GHz; the $449 Ryzen 7 5800X, with eight cores, 16 threads, and a max boost speed of 4.7GHz; and the $299 Ryzen 5 5600X, with six cores, 12 threads, and a max boost speed of 4.6GHz.
Notably, each of those chips has gotten a $50 price increase compared to the original prices of the comparable Zen 2 CPUs from 2019. All four new CPUs will be available starting on November 5th.
AMD is taking a direct shot at Intel with the new lineup, particularly the company’s Core i9-10900K model, which Intel has previously boasted is “the world’s fastest gaming processor.” While AMD’s chips don’t beat Intel 10th Gen chips on sheer clock speed — Intel’s top chip maxes out at a boosted 5.3GHz, while the Ryzen 5950X (AMD’s fastest new chip) tops out at 4.9GHz — AMD does offer other advantages, like improved power efficiency and a higher core and thread count.
The company also points to benchmarks, claiming that the Ryzen 9 5900X manages to beat Intel’s i9-10900K in head-to-head performance for a wide range of titles, including League of Legends, Dota 2, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, and more. (Intel’s chip still won out for Battlefield V, and we’ll have to wait and see how third-party benchmarks rank things before making any real judgments here.)
Of course, a new CPU needs a new GPU to go with it, and AMD also took the time to start teasing its upcoming Radeon RX 6000 “Big Navi” graphics cards built on its next-gen RDNA 2 architecture that the company will be fully announcing on October 28th. The new cards are supposed to be AMD’s answer for Nvidia’s RTX 3000 GPUs, and the company is promising that it, too, will be able to push high-level 4K gaming, teasing over 60fps benchmarks for Borderlands 3, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, and Gears 5 at ultra settings.
AMD won’t have too long to rest on its laurels, though: Intel is already gearing up for its response, already teasing its 11th Gen Rocket Lake CPUs for early 2021.