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AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D vs. Ryzen 7 5800X: Battle of gaming CPUs

AMD lifted the curtain on the Ryzen 7 5800X3D in January, making the bold claim that it was the “world’s fastest gaming processor.” It’s a big statement for a chip that, under the hood, is the same as the Ryzen 7 5800X — a processor that launched a year and a half ago.

A special bit of tech called 3D V-Cache is what helps the Ryzen 7 5800X3D stand apart, and it could catapult the chip to the top of our best CPU list. The older Ryzen 7 5800X still has some advantages, though. Here’s how the two CPUs stack up.

Specs

Ryzen 7 5800X3D Ryzen 7 5800X
Cores 8 8
Threads 16 16
Base clock 3.4GHz 3.8GHz
Boost clock 4.5GHz 4.7GHz
L3 cache 96MB 32MB
Manufacturing process TSMC 7nm FinFET TSMC 7nm FinFET
CPU socket AM4 AM4
Overclocking support No Yes
Max operating temperature 90 degrees Celsius 90 degrees Celsius
TDP 105W 105W

Pricing and availability

AMD Ryzen processor inside a motherboard.

AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800X has been around for a while — it launched in November 2020 for a list price of $450. The Ryzen 7 5800X3D sends off AMD’s Ryzen 5000 range, launching in April 2022 for the same list price of $450.

The Ryzen 7 5800X is about a year and a half old, so prices have dropped a lot. At the time of writing, you can pick one up for about $340. We expect prices will stay below $350 for Ryzen 7 5800X, but even if they climb, you shouldn’t pay more than $400.

AMD’s newer Ryzen 7 5800X3D still has a list price of $450, and although prices may climb slightly in the weeks after launch, they should settle around that list price. Prices always fluctuate, but the difference between the Ryzen 7 5800X and Ryzen 7 5800X3D is about $100.

Performance

AMD CEO holding 3D V-Cache CPU.

Comparing the Ryzen 7 5800X and Ryzen 7 5800X3D in terms of performance is tough. The processors target very different applications despite being largely similar under the hood. If you’re concerned with raw processor performance, the older Ryzen 7 5800X is your best option. For gamers, however, nothing seems to beat the Ryzen 7 5800X3D.

In traditional CPU benchmarks like Cinebench, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D falls short of the Ryzen 7 5800X, as evidenced by ExtremeTech’s testing. Memory-sensitive applications still see a benefit on the 3D-stacked part, however. In tasks like H.264 encoding, the increased cache allows the Ryzen 7 5800X3D to even outpace Intel’s Core i9-12900K.

The gains are massively impressive, even if they aren’t surprising. Prior to launch, leaked benchmarks showed the Ryzen 7 5800X3D beating the Core i9-12900K by as much as 30% in some benchmarks.

Gaming is where the Ryzen 7 5800X3D really shines. TechSpot found that it’s as much as 50% faster than the Ryzen 7 5800X in open-world games like Far Cry 6. Even more impressive, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D managed a 5% increase over the Core i9-12900KS in Far Cry 6 — and Intel’s processor costs nearly twice as much.

Dr. Lisa Su presenting AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D.

Those improvements aren’t always as stark. In frequency-sensitive games like Rainbow Six Extraction, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D managed only a 5% increase over the Ryzen 7 5800X. That’s still a lead, however.

In gaming, it’s important to remember that AMD’s Ryzen 5000 range performs largely the same — even between the Ryzen 5 5600X and Ryzen 9 5950X, most titles land within a few frames of each other. Because of that, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D not only beats the Ryzen 7 5800X, but also the most expensive processors AMD has to offer right now.

Overclocking

AMD Ryzen processor going into a socket.
AMD

Despite being a newer version, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D actually has a slower clock speed than the Ryzen 7 5800X. It’s 200MHz slower on the max boost clock and a full 400MHz slower for the base clock. That normally wouldn’t be a big deal, but the Ryzen 7 5800X3D doesn’t support CPU overclocking.

The Ryzen 7 5800X does. It runs faster out of the box — up to 4.7GHz on a single core — and you can easily nudge up to 5GHz on a single core with a little overclocking. If you want to push your hardware to its limits, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D isn’t for you. Although it’s still possible to overclock the Ryzen 7 5800X3D with a lot of extra work, it’s risky.

As performance numbers show, however, frequency isn’t everything. The extra cache on the Ryzen 7 5800X3D makes up for the lack of frequency in games especially. Still, the Ryzen 7 5800X offers much more bandwidth if you run a lot of frequency-sensitive applications.

A big cache

A slide explaining AMD 3D V-Cache.

The Ryzen 7 5800X3D and Ryzen 7 5800X are the same processor under the hood, minus a little bit of clock speed. The catch is AMD’s 3D V-Cache technology, which allows the Ryzen 7 5800X3D to access an additional 64MB of L3 cache — bringing the total L3 cache to 96MB on the chip.

It may not seem like a big deal, but benchmarks show the extra cache can do wonders in games. In short, more cache means the processor doesn’t have to access the system RAM as often, which reduces the amount of time it takes for the CPU to receive and process instructions.

Not all applications will benefit from an increased cache. Many older games, for example, benefit from the increased frequency of the Ryzen 7 5800X. Newer titles, however, are optimized to store multiple CPU instructions and therefore benefit from the larger cache on the Ryzen 7 5800X3D.

A new gaming champion

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D box.
XanxoGaming

The Ryzen 7 5800X3D is the best gaming CPU you can buy right now based on initial testing. If you want the highest frame rates, you should spend the extra money on the Ryzen 7 5800X3D over the base part, despite the lack of overclocking support and decreased frequency.

Although there are applications where frequency is better, benchmarks show that the Ryzen 7 5800X3D can trump everything else AMD has, as well as the best Intel CPUs.

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