AMD Ryzen 5 5600X review: The best mid-range desktop processor for gaming?

Rating:

AMD launched a new lineup of desktop processors built on the new Zen 3 architecture. One of the highlights of this series is the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, a CPU that promises top-notch performance in any workload, but especially in gaming, all at a reasonable price. The new processor wants to deliver more performance/watt than ever, lower power consumption, and a feature set impossible to beat by Intel’s similar options. Read this review to see if AMD Ryzen 5 5600X is the mid-range processor to buy:

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X: Who is it good for?

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X is the desktop processor you should buy next if you:

  • Want to play any game, regardless of how demanding it might be
  • Are looking for a processor that can manage any workload at a reasonable price
  • You want access to PCI-Express 4 and other new technologies

Pros and cons

Here are the best things about the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X:

See price on:

  • Its single-core performance is great, making it an excellent choice for gaming
  • The multi-thread performance is also outstanding, making it one of the best options for productivity
  • The price that AMD asks is justified by the performance of the Ryzen 5 5600X
  • The boost frequency is excellent
  • It is an unlocked processor, so you can try to overclock it if you want
  • Supports PCI Express 4 and fast DDR4 memory
  • Its power consumption is low
  • AMD bundles a Wraith Stealth cooler with it
  • Intel does not have a processor to beat it, at a similar price

We do not have any downsides to mention about the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, except maybe for the higher launch-price when compared to its predecessory from the Zen 2 family.

Notă produs 5/5

Verdict

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X is one of the most balanced desktop processors we have tested. We are amazed by what AMD managed to create and how significant the performance increase is from one generation to the next. The Ryzen 5 5600X aces its older brother – the Ryzen 5 3600X – and its direct competitor from Intel (Core i5-10600K). In our opinion, the Ryzen 5 5600X is the best mid-range processor of 2020 and, probably, of 2021 too. It gets our maximum rating and a warm buy recommendation for all the gamers out there.

Unboxing the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X arrives in a rather large box made of fairly thick cardboard. On its front side, it features the company logo, the Ryzen brand, and it also tells you that you are looking at a 5000 Series Processor.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X: The box

On one side of the box, you can see the processor through a cutout, and on the back, you find some information about it.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X: The back of the box

Inside the box, there is the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X processor, a Wraith Stealth cooler, a small AMD Ryzen sticker, and some documentation about the CPU, including its warranty.

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X processor comes in a beautiful box that also bundles a cooler. In other words, you can simply go ahead, mount it on your desktop computer, and enjoy using it.

Hardware specifications

Ryzen 5 5600X is part of the newest generation of AMD processors launched in November 2020. The Ryzen 5000 processors are built on the latest Zen 3 architecture, which, compared to Zen 2, brings some fantastic performance improvements. AMD says that Zen 3 CPUs ace Intel’s similar processors in 1080p gaming and deliver a double-digit boost for instructions per cycle (IPC) and increase the top boost frequencies.

Unboxing the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X processor

The processor that we are reviewing – AMD Ryzen 5 5600X – has a recommended price of 299 US dollars, a bit more than the previous generation AMD Ryzen 5 3600X. It comes with six cores and twelve processing threads, clocked at a 3.7 GHz base frequency, and can reach 4.6 GHz (max boost clock). Both the base and the boost clocks are higher than those of the old Ryzen 5 3600X. In terms of cache memory, the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benefits from 3 MB of Level 2 cache and 32 MB of Level 3 cache.

Another improvement over the previous Ryzen 5 3600X built on the Zen 2 architecture is that the Ryzen 5 5600X has a lower TDP: 65 Watts over 95 Watts. Furthermore, the Ryzen 5 5600X also receives a bundled cooler from AMD, namely a Wraith Stealth. Thanks to the low TDP of this processor, this cooler should do an excellent job of keeping its temperature low. Unfortunately, the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X sample we received did not have the cooler in the box. However, the sample we got was not destined for retail or reselling, only for press reviews.

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X desktop processor

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X has the same system memory specs as the Ryzen 5 3600X: DDR4 running at 3200 MHz. Consequently, if you intend to upgrade from a Zen 2 CPU, you can keep your RAM. Also, AMD Ryzen 5 5600X and all the other Zen 3 Ryzen 5000 CPUs support PCI Express 4.0 and still use the same AM4 socket. That means that you don’t have to change your motherboard when upgrading if it has a 500-series chipset such as X570, B550, or A520, and its manufacturer gives you an updated BIOS for the new processors. For the moment, only motherboards with an X570 chipset support the Ryzen 5000 processors, including the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X.

The technical specs of the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X are impressive in every aspect. Also, the performance increase compared to the previous generation Ryzen 5 3600X should be significant. Whether that is true or not, read the benchmarks section that follows to find out what to expect.

Performance in benchmarks and games

We tested the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X processor on a PC with the following hardware and software:

To get a clearer idea about the performance offered by the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, we compared it with the Ryzen 5 3600X (its older brother), Intel Core i5-10600K (its direct competitor with six cores and 12 threads), and AMD Ryzen 7 3700X (previous generation but with 8 cores and 16 threads).

We began by using CPU-Z to check the processor’s speed on a single thread. The Single Thread score we got was 637, which is fantastic! The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X offers an almost 27% increase in performance than the Ryzen 5 3600X, about 23% compared to both the Intel Core i5-10600K and roughly 24% compared to the Ryzen 7 3700X!

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: CPU-Z Single Thread

In CPU-Z’s Multi-Thread test, we got a score of 4965. Again, this is a 24% increase in performance compared to the Ryzen 5 3600X and 22.41% compared to the Intel Core i5-10600K! As it has fewer cores than the older Ryzen 7 3700X, the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X did not manage to match it, although the difference is not that high: 9.89%.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: CPU-Z Multi Thread

Then we moved to the rendering benchmarks. In the Cinebench R20 benchmark, AMD Ryzen 5 5600X obtained 4314 points using all its processor cores. Once more, this is an awe-inspiring result for a six-core CPU, and even more so if you look at the increase in performance from the Ryzen 5 3600X: 22.52%! The rise in performance compared with an Intel’s Core i5-10600K is 23.89%! Only the older Ryzen 7 3700X is faster at rendering, as it has more cores and threads: 10%.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: Cinebench R20

In the second rendering benchmark that we ran – Blender – we selected to render two different scenes: bmw27 and classroom. This benchmark measures the time of completion, so the faster processors get lower results (in other words, lower means better). Ryzen 5 5600X needed 13.45 minutes to finish the rendering jobs. Compared to the Ryzen 5 3600X, this is a 39% decrease, and if you look at the Intel Core i5-10600K, it needs 15.94% less time to finish the job. In lack of other words, wow! The Ryzen 7 3700X, with its additional cores, is still faster: 13.16%.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: Blender

Next on the list came PCMark 10, a benchmark that measures the performance of computers in daily activities. That means web browsing, video conferencing, app start-up times, productivity, and digital content creation. AMD Ryzen 5 5600X got an incredibly high score once again: 6841 points. That is more than both the Ryzen 5 3600X (10.75% increase), Intel Core i5-10600K (5.80% increase), and Ryzen 7 3700X (3.52% increase)!

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: PCMark 10

Also, to test what the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X can do in everyday use, we checked how fast it is at browsing the internet. For that, we used the JetStream 2 benchmark in the latest version of Google Chrome. The higher the score you get in this benchmark, the faster your processor is at loading webpages. As you are already accustomed by now, the Ryzen 5 5600X not only performs brilliantly, but it aces all the other processors. It got a score of 195 points, a performance increase of no more, no less than 40.29% from the Ryzen 5 3600X, and about 25% compared to the Intel Core i5-10600K or the Ryzen 7 3700X!

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: JetStream 2

7-Zip is a file compression app that you can use to get an idea of how fast a processor is because both the compression and decompression speeds are good indicators of CPU performance. With the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, we measured a compression speed of 50 MB/s, which means a performance increase of 25% compared to a Ryzen 5 3600X or Intel Core i5-10600K. It’s also only a 7.41 decrease in speed from an AMD Ryzen 7 3700X.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: 7-Zip Compression

The decompression speed in 7-Zip was similarly impressive: 867 MB/s. That translates into a performance rise of 14.08% from a Ryzen 5 3600X and 29.99% from an Intel Core i5-10600K. The Ryzen 7 3700X is still going faster, thanks to its two additional cores, which help it offer a further 14.65% increase in speed.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: 7-Zip Decompression

Now let’s see what the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X can do for gamers. 🙂 To avoid any possible bottlenecks, we ran the next games in 1920 x 1080 pixels resolution and the lowest graphics quality set.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider told us that the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X could render 307 frames per second (CPU Render value). That is much more than the Ryzen 5 3600X (20.39% increase), Intel Core i5-10600K (15.85% increase), and more than even what the Ryzen 7 3700X can do (12.45% increase).

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: Shadow of the Tomb Raider

In Metro Exodus, which is still one of the most demanding hardware-punishing games today, we measured an average frame rate of 129. We are looking at a 13.16% increase in performance offered by the Ryzen 5 5600X compared to the Ryzen 5 3600X. On the other hand, both the Intel Core i5-10600K and the AMD Ryzen 7 3700X are a bit faster (7.75% and, respectively, 6.20% rise in fps).

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: Metro Exodus

In World War Z, using the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, we had 269 fps. Again, incredible gains in performance: 28.71% compared to Ryzen 5 3600X, 34.50% compared to the Intel Core i5-10600K, and 19.56% compared to Ryzen 7 3700X!

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: World War Z

To test the temperatures reached by the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, we ran Prime95 to stress it, and we monitored it with HWiNFO. We did not want to use a custom cooler, but the sample CPU we received did not have the stock one bundled with it. That is why we used another cooler: an ASUS ROG Ryuo 120. The maximum temperature we witnessed for the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X was 70 degrees Celsius (158 Fahrenheit), an amazingly low one. Good job, AMD!

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: Temperature

Finally, we also used AIDA64 Extreme to measure the power consumption of the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X. We witnessed a maximum power consumption of 75 Watts, which is a low value for this processor’s performance. Furthermore, it is a lot less than how much electricity the Intel Core i5-10600K requires (75 vs. 137 Watts)!

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X benchmark results: Power consumption

After we finished the benchmarks for the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X, we can only say one thing: WOW! AMD did an extraordinary thing with this desktop processor, offering a tremendous performance increase from one generation to the other. The Ryzen 5 5600X will probably be the best mid-range gaming processor of 2021.

What is your opinion about the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X?

Now you know that we were categorically impressed by the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X. We believe it’s the best mid-range processor for gaming and productivity. Do you agree? Are you as happy as we are about the upsurge in performance offered by this CPU compared to the previous Ryzen 5 3600X? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.