Best AMD Processor Comparison for Your 2020 PC Build

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A component that has one of the most significant impacts on your computer’s overall performance is the processor. When looking for one, you will need to balance performance with the budget for your entire system. It is essential that you get the right one, so you get optimum performance, depending on your needs.

AMD Zen 2 Desktop Processors

AMD has been on the lower end of the market share compared to its chip-maker rivals, Intel. However, in 2019, with the launch of their latest architecture, Zen 2, they have been slowing clawing their way back because of the impressive performance of their latest chips.

AMD’s third-generation Ryzen processors have proven to be competitive. This is because their chips are more affordable but pack a similar level of performance. They definitely provide better value for your money. Another advantage of the latest generation Ryzen chips is that AMD has somehow packed more processing cores compared to their Intel counterparts.

What Makes It Perform Extremely Well?

The latest Zen 2 chips use a 7-nanometer process, and the most significant improvement is in power efficiency. This simply means that the power requirements of the chip are significantly decreased, resulting in lower temperatures and power consumption. This allows the chip better overclocking headroom so you can push it to the limit without reaching dangerous temperature levels.

Sizes of physical cores are also reduced, allowing AMD to pack more cores in each processor. This is the reason why some of their high-performance enthusiast-level chips come with 16 cores. It is not just the core count, though, since clock speeds have also greatly improved where most of their high-end chips are knocking on the 5 GHz boost clock door.

List of the Latest AMD Microprocessors

Let’s take a look at the latest line of Zen 2 processors and see which ones are perfect for your PC build.

Ryzen 5 Mainstream Processors

Ryzen 5 3600

AMD’s 3rd generation Ryzen 5s are mainstream processors that offer solid and reliable performance at an affordable price point. You can consider them as budget CPUs, but they do pack a punch, and they can easily handle games and other productivity tasks with ease.

The Ryzen 5 3600 is one such example where it comes with 6 processing cores and 12 threads at an affordable price. PC builders can easily afford it and other processors in this family at a cost that will not burn your pockets. Its decent core count also allows you to have an excellent experience with a lot of productivity tasks like content creation, graphics design, and streaming.

Ryzen 5 processors are also great gaming chips giving you decent frame rates for smooth, consistent play.

Ryzen 5 3500Ryzen 5
3500X
Ryzen 5 3600Ryzen 5 Pro
3600
Ryzen 5 3600X
Fabrication
Architecture
7nm7nm7nm7nm7nm
Cores6 Cores6 Cores6 Cores6 Cores6 Cores
Threads6 Threads6 Threads12 Threads12 Threads12 Threads
Base Clock3.6 GHz3.6 GHz3.6 GHz3.6 GHz3.8 GHz
Boost Clock4.1 GHz4.1 GHz4.2 GHz4.2 GHz4.4 GHz
L1 Cache32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core
L2 Cache512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core
L3 Cache16 MB Total32 MB Total32 MB Total32 MB Total32 MB Total
OverclockingNOYESYESNOYES
SocketAM4AM4AM4AM4AM4
PCIe Lanes2424242424
Memory
Support
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
CPU Power
(TDP)
65W65W65W65W95W
Stock CoolerNONEWraith StealthWraith StealthNONEWraith Spire v2
PriceOEM OnlyChina Only$199
CHECK PRICE
OEM Only$239
CHECK PRICE

Ryzen 7 High-Performance Processors

The Ryzen 7 family of processors are AMD’s high-performance series that provides improved efficiency, higher clock speeds, and packed with more cores compared to their competitors. In their 3000 series, they filled it with 8 cores and 16 threads, which is significantly more than their Intel counterparts.

This family of AMD microprocessors excels in both gaming and multi-threaded activities such as video rendering, 3D design, graphic editing, and a lot more. The Ryzen 7 processors are versatile chips that can do almost virtually any task you throw at it.

Ryzen 7 Pro 3700Ryzen 7 3700XRyzen 7 3800X
Fabrication
Architecture
7nm7nm7nm
Cores8 Cores8 Cores8 Cores
Threads16 Threads16 Threads16 Threads
Base Clock3.6 GHz3.6 GHz3.9 GHz
Boost Clock4.4 GHz4.4 GHz4.5 GHz
L1 Cache32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core
L2 Cache512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core
L3 Cache32 MB Total32 MB Total32 MB Total
OverclockingNOYESYES
SocketAM4AM4AM4
PCIe Lanes242424
Memory
Support
DDR4-3200 Dual ChannelDDR4-3200 Dual ChannelDDR4-3200 Dual Channel
CPU Power
(TDP)
65W65W105W
Stock CoolerNONEWrath PrismWrath Prism
PriceOEM$325
CHECK PRICE
$399
CHECK PRICE

Ryzen 9 Enthusiast Processors

Ryzen 9 3900X

The Ryzen 9 3000 series are among the fastest desktop processors in the market. AMD’s Zen 2 architecture allows them to pack 12 cores and 24 threads on these chips, which is a lot more than their Intel counterparts in the same price category.

AMD pushed everything to the limit with their Ryzen 9 processors since they maximized speed, memory, bandwidth, delivering every possible ounce of performance for just about any computing task. This chip gives you impressive gaming performance delivering smooth gameplay with the latest games. The multi-threaded performance also astounds as you can finish content creation tasks in record time.

If you are an enthusiast and want the best desktop performance for a variety of computing tasks, the Ryzen 9 is your chip of choice.

Ryzen 9 3900Ryzen 9 Pro 3900Ryzen 9 3900XRyzen 9 3950X
Fabrication
Architecture
7nm7nm7nm7nm
Cores12 Cores12 Cores12 Cores16 Cores
Threads24 Threads24 Threads24 Threads32 Threads
Base Clock3.1 GHz3.1 GHz3.8 GHz3.5 GHz
Boost Clock4.3 GHz4.3 GHz4.6 GHz4.7 GHz
L1 Cache32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core
L2 Cache512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core
L3 Cache64 MB Total64 MB Total64 MB Total64 MB Total
OverclockingNONOYESYES
SocketAM4AM4AM4AM4
PCIe Lanes24242424
Memory
Support
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
CPU Power
(TDP)
65W65W105W105W
Stock CoolerNONENONEWraith PrismNONE
PriceOEMOEM$493
CHECK PRICE
$749
CHECK PRICE

Ryzen Threadripper High-End Desktop Processors

If you are the type of user who loves to push the envelope of your computer, then the 3rd generation Ryzen Threadripper is for you. It comes with a minimum of 24 computing cores with 48 threads that can significantly improve render times.

Even the most taxing of programs easily gets tamed by the latest Ryzen Threadripper family. You can use your favorite creative applications and dive into elaborate 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, editing, and video production. Enjoy blazing fast render speeds, exports, and media encodes with multiple cores that other processors simply cannot match.

If you are a content creator or work with resource-intensive applications regularly, the Ryzen Threadripper will definitely improve your quality of life as you work. This is a processor that is all about producing content from videos to games.

Ryzen Threadripper
3960X
Ryzen Threadripper
3970X
Ryzen Threadripper
3990X
Fabrication
Architecture
7nm7nm7nm
Cores24 Cores32 Cores64 Cores
Threads48 Threads64 Threads128 Threads
Base Clock3.8 GHz3.7 GHz2.9 GHz
Boost Clock4.5 GHz4.5 GHz4.3 GHz
L1 Cache32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core
L2 Cache512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core
L3 Cache128 MB Total128 MB Total256 MB Total
OverclockingYESYESYES
SocketsTRX4sTRX4sTRX4
PCIe Lanes646488
Memory
Support
DDR4-3200
Quad Channel
DDR4-3200
Quad Channel
DDR4-3200
Quad Channel
CPU Power
(TDP)
280W280W280W
Stock CoolerNONENONENONE
Price$1,399
CHECK PRICE
$1,949
CHECK PRICE
$3,990
N/A

AMD Zen 2 Mobile Processors

AMD also develops and creates mobile processors found in laptops, and here is a list of their latest Zen 2 chips for portable devices:

Ryzen U-series (Ultrathin) Mobile Processors

AMD has released their 3rd generation Ryzen processors for laptops. Their U-series is built for thin and lightweight machines that are focused on mobility. These need to have the power to allow you to do work but not produce a lot of heat in the process.

The 3rd generation Ryzen U-series all have a TDP rating of 15W, which is perfect for ultra-thin machines that you can carry around with you. These processors also come with integrated graphics so that you can watch your favorite videos in 4K HDR, or even play the latest games.

You will not be able to get these on their own, as they are bundled on different devices, but here are their specs, so you have an idea of what they are capable of when you are looking for a laptop or ultrabook with a Ryzen U-series CPU.

Ryzen 3
4300U
Ryzen 5
4500U
Ryzen 5
4600U
Ryzen 7
4700U
Ryzen 7
4800U
Fabrication
Architecture
7nm7nm7nm7nm7nm
Cores4 Cores6 Cores6 Cores8 Cores8 Cores
Threads4 Threads6 Threads12 Threads8 Threads16 Threads
Base Clock2.7 GHz2.3 GHz2.1 GHz2.0 GHz1.8 GHz
Boost Clock3.7 GHz4.0 GHz4.0 GHz4.1 GHz4.2 GHz
L1 Cache32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core32 KB per core
L2 Cache512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core512 KB per core
L3 Cache4 MB Total8 MB Total8 MB Total8 MB Total8 MB Total
GPU Clock1,400 MHz1,500 MHz1,500 MHz1,600 MHz1,750 MHz
GPU Power896 GFLOPS1,152 GFLOPS1,152 GFLOPS1,434 GFLOPS1,792 GFLOPS
Memory
Support
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
CPU Power
(TDP)
15W15W15W15W15W

Ryzen H-Series (High-Performance) Mobile Processors

The 3rd generation Ryzen H-series is all about performance. These usually come in 15-inch or 17-inch gaming laptops, which have better cooling systems than their ultrabook counterparts. Looking at the specs of both the Ryzen 5 4600H and Ryzen 7 4800H, both these chips are definitely a beast that will allow you to play the latest games at high frame rates.

The chips also come with integrated graphics, but since these are designed for gaming laptops, machines that will have these CPUs will undoubtedly come with discrete graphics for a smoother gaming experience. Rated at 45W TDP, these should be perfect in mid-sized gaming machines with effective cooling solutions.

The H-series processors are powerful, efficient, and packed with more cores so you can game and use it for work.

Ryzen 5 4600HRyzen 7 4800H
Fabrication
Architecture
7nm7nm
Cores6 Cores8 Cores
Threads12 Threads16 Threads
Base Clock3.0 GHz2.9 GHz
Boost Clock4.0 GHz4.2 GHz
L1 Cache32 KB per core32 KB per core
L2 Cache512 KB per core512 KB per core
L3 Cache8 MB Total8 MB Total
GPU Clock1,500 MHz1,600 MHz
GPU Power1,152 GFLOPS1,434 GFLOPS
Memory
Support
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
DDR4-3200
Dual Channel
CPU Power
(TDP)
45W45W

The Best AMD Processor for 2020

Best Overall Value CPU: Ryzen 9 3900X

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen 9
3900X
12 Cores24 Threads3.8 GHz4.6 GHz105W
$493
CHECK PRICE

This is one of AMD’s most potent mainstream processor available in the market, the Ryzen 9 3900X is a chip that can do it all. Its multi-threaded performance shreds everything, even the most resource-demanding applications. There is nothing more powerful but the Ryzen 9 3950X in its category. The price difference between the two definitely makes this a more value pick compared to its more powerful brother.

This 12-core beast of a chip can handle every task from gaming to content creation. Render times are one of the lowest you can get without moving up to the high-end desktop processor class, the Ryzen Threadripper.

If you are looking for the best processor that you can get that will provide you with an excellent price to performance ration, the Ryzen 9 3900X is definitely the one to get.

Best Entry-Level CPU: Ryzen 3 2200G

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen 3
2200G
4 Cores4 Threads3.5 GHz3.7 GHz65W
$100
CHECK PRICE

Although not a Zen 2 chip since this is from a previous generation, this is still a budget beast. If you are looking to build a gaming PC but tight on budget, the Ryzen 3 2200G is an excellent fit.

It does not have hyperthreading capability, that’s why it only comes with 4 threads, but what differentiates this processor from other chips in its category is its integrated graphics. Technically, AMD calls these chips APUs, and this is perfect for casual gamers since you do not need to get a dedicated graphics card right away.

Gaming performance is impressive with the Ryzen 3 2200G as you can play games like Overwatch at high graphics settings at 4K and get decent frame rates. Lowering your resolution to 1080p (FHD) or 1440p (QHD) will significantly improve your gaming experience.

Best Midrange CPU: Ryzen 5 3600

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen 5
3600
6 Cores12 Threads3.6 GHz4.2 GHz65W
$199
CHECK PRICE

The Ryzen 5 3600 is a processor that offers the most competitive price for the performance it provides. AMD’s Zen 2 architecture gives this chip a boost in clock speeds and efficiency making this an impressive processor for its price.

This chip is definitely excellent for gaming and performs impressively on various productivity tasks. You will also get access to automated overclocking tools that are available on higher-end processors from the Ryzen 7 and Ryzen 9 family.

The Ryzen 5 3600 processor is one that is definitely going to give you the best bang for your buck in terms of gaming and productivity. This is a CPU for those who are on a budget but want the best performance.

Best High-Performance CPU: Ryzen 7 3700X

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen 7
3700X
8 Cores16 Threads3.6 GHz4.4 GHz65W
$325
CHECK PRICE

The Ryzen 7 3700X is a versatile processor that can handle gaming and productivity tasks with ease. The additional cores that it comes with compared to its competitors make it the perfect chip if you are looking to get into game streaming without sacrificing performance. This processor also rips through video editing and rendering tasks because of its extra cores and threads.

This is a processor to get if you want to future-proof your system. It is more affordable compared to its competitors, but have comparable performance. It is a dependable all-around chip that offers better performance than the Ryzen 5 3600X but nips at the heels of more powerful CPUs like the Ryzen 7 3800X and Ryzen 9 3900X.

With it being unlocked and has access to AMDs automated overclocking tools, this is a processor that is going to give you one of the best values for your money. Impressive performance at its price is perfect for most systems that act as both gaming machines and workstations.

Most Powerful Desktop CPU: Ryzen 9 3950X

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen 9
3950X
16 Cores32 Threads3.5 GHz4.7 GHz105W
$749
CHECK PRICE

The Ryzen 9 3950X is a processor that is knocking on the door of the Ryzen Threadrippers. This is one of the most powerful CPUs available in the market that you can get and fit on your AM4 motherboards. This means that you can upgrade from either a Ryzen 5 or Ryzen 7 straight to the 3950X, as long as your motherboard can handle it.

This processor is a 16 core, 32 thread beast that brings high-end desktop performance to mainstream users. It does come with a hefty price tag, but if budget is not an issue, then this is something that you can consider.

As an entry-level high-end desktop CPU, this is more for enthusiasts and professionals that do serious work like 3D design and rendering, video production, and a lot more. This chip can handle smooth gaming, but if you are building a system that is more focused on playing at high frame rates, you might be better off with a mainstream or high-performance CPU such as the Ryzen 7 3700X.

However, if you are looking to burn through your renders and encoding jobs, the Ryzen 9 3950X is an excellent pick-up.

Best for Gaming CPU: Ryzen 5 3600X

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen 5
3600X
6 Cores12 Threads3.8 GHz4.4 GHz95W
$239
CHECK PRICE

Running 6 cores and 12 threads, the Ryzen 5 3600X is a gaming monster of a CPU. It is one of the best processors for gaming in terms of price and performance. Productivity apps and jobs are also something that this chip can handle quite easily.

The Ryzen 5 3600X regularly beats its Intel counterpart, the i5- 9600K, in both gaming and productivity experience. The chip is also unlocked so you can overclock it to squeeze a bit more juice out of it for far smoother gameplay and faster encoding and render times.

This CPU is an excellent midrange option that should be enough for all your gaming needs. If you do the occasional rendering and encoding tasks, this should give you decent performance where you will not have to look for a more robust alternative. The Ryzen 5 3600X is a great all-around processor that will satisfy the needs of most mainstream users.

Best High-End Desktop CPU: Ryzen Threadripper 3970X

CoresThreadsBase ClockBoost ClockTDP
Ryzen
Threadripper
3970X
32 Cores64 Threads3.7 GHz4.5 GHz280W
$1,949
CHECK PRICE

This 32-core, 64-thread monster shreds all your productivity tasks from 3D modeling, rendering, and video encoding. This is the best CPU that you can get if you are a professional in the creative and content creation industry. Whether you create videos every day or do 3D models, and even game development, this is the processor for you.

Although not compatible with AM4 motherboards, it does have its own socket designed for it. It lies somewhere in between consumer-grade and enterprise-grade hardware. This is a chip that is suited for various video and 3D editors’ workloads, and should not find any of them a problem.

It is blazing fast and should provide you with the best work experience no matter what you do.

AMD CPU Best Value for Your Money

With the wide selection of AMD’s processors, they definitely have you covered. Whether you are looking for the most powerful desktop processor or one that will give you the best overall value, they have it. They also have APUs, processors with built-in graphics capabilities, which are perfect for budget builds since you do not have to get a GPU to use your PC.

The processor that is going to give you the best value for your money will always be the one that fits your needs and is in your budget. The great thing about AMD’s list of microprocessors is that they have everything that you can imagine.

Let’s take a look at which processors give you the best value for your money:

Best Overall Value: Ryzen 7 3700X

Ryzen 7 3700X
✔ Extraordinary price to performance
✔ Excellent multi-threaded performance
✔ Matches competition when it comes to gaming
✔ Built-in Cooler
$325
CHECK PRICE

The AMD processor that offers the best overall value is the Ryzen 7 3700X. It is a versatile chip that can handle both gaming and productivity tasks at a price that will not break the bank. It is more than $60 more affordable than its closest Intel counterparts, and easily surpasses its performance on multi-threaded applications. It does have lower clock speeds, but it can easily match its Intel counterpart when it comes to gaming experience.

If you are a gamer and use your PC for a lot of other work-related tasks, the Ryzen 7 3700X is going to give you the most bang for your buck. Packed with 8 cores and 16 threads, it is definitely one that will provide you with the most overall value.

Budget Value CPU: Ryzen 5 2400G

Ryzen 5 2400G
✔ Impressive built-in graphics capabilities
✔ Excellent value
✔ Perfect CPU for a multimedia PC
$169
CHECK PRICE

If you are on a budget, but still demand decent performance from your system, the Ryzen 5 2400G is the CPU for you. One value advantage that it has compared to most chips in its price range is its integrated graphics. This addition makes it an excellent multimedia system enabling you to enjoy 4K HDR playback.

You can also play games with this chip, although not at the highest graphics settings. But, being able to use it as soon you set it up and not requiring a graphics card certainly adds value to this processor.

This is the processor that you will want to consider if you are building a gaming and multimedia system if you are on a tight budget.

Midrange Value CPU: Ryzen 5 3600X

Ryzen 5 3600X
✔ Matches Intel counterparts at the same price range
✔ Exceptional gaming performance
✔ Comes with a stock cooler
$239
CHECK PRICE

The Ryzen 5 3600X is the processor that is going to give you the most value for your gaming rig. Running 6 cores and 12 threads, this can easily handle the top games and give you top-notch performance. You can reach frame rates beyond 60 giving you the smoothest gameplay experience. For esports titles such as CS:Go, Dota 2, League of Legends, Overwatch, and a lot more you can plug in a 144 Hz display to take advantage of the power that the processor has.

The built-in stock cooler gives you some budget headroom if you are building a gaming system using the Ryzen 5 3600X. This allows you to save up and get a cooler after building your PC, giving you a lot more value out of it.

The Ryzen 5 3600X is a chip that offers gaming horsepower at a price that is reasonable that anyone can build a system using it.

The AMD CPU Perfect for You

AMD designs and manufactures a lot of CPUs. The best part about this is that you have options depending on what your needs and budget are. If you want one with the best possible performance, and money is not an issue, you can definitely get a Ryzen 9 3950X or even one of the Ryzen Threadripper models. If you are looking for one that offers the best overall value, they also have that in the form of the Ryzen 7 3700X. Budget options are also available, so you can be sure that there is a chip that is perfect for your needs.

Whether you are getting a processor for gaming, work, or a mix of both, there is one with specs that will provide you the best possible experience at a price that is within your budget. If you continuously work with resource-heavy apps for 3D design, video, and graphics, you can check out any of the Ryzen 9 3000 series as they should be perfect for your build.

Gaming is also not a problem for AMD processors since they perform exceptionally well, and they can definitely take your gaming experience to the next level. You can be sure that there is an AMD CPU that is the right fit for your build, and this guide will be able to help you.

Final Thoughts

AMD has been at the losing end of the market share for quite some time now, and with the release of their Zen processors, they have slowly captured most of it back. Performance and price need to go hand in hand, and this is one advantage of AMD. They make efficient, fast, and significantly cheaper chips that if they keep this up, they can match Intel in terms of sales numbers.

Building a system allows you to get creative and find which components give you the optimum experience that you are looking for, and AMD CPUs are definitely some of the best ones in the market that will be able to provide it to you.