Key Features: Familiar design
Like the Ryzen 7 5800X, the Ryzen 7 5700X is an octa-core processor with simultaneous multi-threading that allows each core to process two program threads simultaneously. Both chips have 32MB of Layer 3 cache, use AMD Zen 3 microarchitecture, are built on TSMC’s 7nm FinFET process, and are overclockable. In general, they are almost the same product.
(Photo: Michael Justin Allen Sexton)
There are only three ways in which the Ryzen 7 processors differ. We’ve already mentioned the price, with the 5700X listing for $299.99 versus the 5800X’s MSRP of $449.99. To be fair, the Ryzen 7 5800X sells for a lot less than that nowadays — it’s currently available from Amazon for $338 — but as you’ll soon see, that’s an extra $38 you don’t need to spend.
Other major differences are the thermal design strength of the two CPUs and clock speed. The Ryzen 7 5800X has a TDP of 105 watts, with the Ryzen 7 5700X’s TDP set at 65 watts. As you’d expect from the lower thermal rating, the Ryzen 7 5700X also has fewer hours, but the latter hasn’t gone down as much as you might expect given the lowered TDP. The 5700X’s base clock is 3.4GHz, or 400MHz less than the Ryzen 7 5800X’s base clock speed of 3.8GHz. However, the most significant boost clock drops by only 100MHz, with the 5700X at 4.6GHz versus the 5800X at 4.7GHz.
(Photo: Michael Justin Allen Sexton)
Modern CPUs tend to spend a lot of their time at boost frequencies, which means that for most of our benchmarks, these two processors only had a 100MHz clock difference. As you’d expect, this resulted in the two performing similarly in most tests.
Test preparation and standards
We tested the Ryzen 7 5700X on an MSI MEG X570 Ace Max with 32GB of DDR4 RAM clocked at 3000MHz. A 240mm closed-loop water cooler was used to prevent the processor from overheating.
From a specs perspective, the Ryzen 7 5700X appears to be at a disadvantage for Intel’s new 12th-generation “Alder Lake” CPUs, which have more cores overall. However, not all cores are created equal, which is certainly true for the performance and efficiency (P and E) cores of “Alder Lake” chips (see our Core i9-12900K review for details). But the new AMD part is also at a disadvantage in terms of clock speed. One of the most notable advantages that the Ryzen 7 5700X should offer is the larger L3 cache and lower TDP rating.
In terms of pricing, the Ryzen 7 5700X is a bit of a mixed bag. If it could compete with the Core i7-12700K, its price would be phenomenal, but it’s actually close to the cheaper Core i5-12600K. Compared to older Ryzen CPUs, the Ryzen 7 5700X has better specs for its price. Its MSRP, boost clock, and cache size match that of the Ryzen 5 5600X, but the 5700X gives you two extra cores at no extra charge.
Depending on testing, the Ryzen 7 5700X has proven to be either much faster or slower than competing “Alder Lake” processors. In two tests, HandBrake and POV-Ray, the Ryzen 7 5700X managed to finish the job minutes earlier than the Core i7-12700K and Core i5-12600K. In POV-Ray, AMD’s new chip was roughly equivalent to the Ryzen 7 5800X. The two AMD CPUs performed similarly in most of our tests, although the Ryzen 7 5800X did manage to get a little ahead more often.
In benchmarks other than HandBrake and POV-Ray, the 5700X struggled to keep up with Intel’s Core i5-12600K. Compared to the Intel chip, the Ryzen 7 5700X was about 30% slower in Cinebench R23, 33% slower in Geekbench Pro, 20% slower in Blender, and 11% slower in Adobe Photoshop 22. The 5700X was a win in our Adobe video editing exercise Premiere 15, but the difference was within the margin of error, which made it an effective link.
In gaming tests, the Core i5-12600K also maintained a slight lead over the Ryzen 7 5700X — as did the Ryzen 7 5800X. The most notable feature here was the F1 2020, where the Core i5-12600K outperformed the Ryzen 7 5700X by 10% when running in 4K and 5% at 1080p. In the Rainbow Six Siege benchmark, the AMD chip outperformed Intel by 6% at 1080p but lost 4% at 4K. (The 5700X was able to beat the Ryzen 7 5800X at 1080p here, but we’d argue that 4K results are more important as there’s no real need to push any game past 400fps.)
Motherboard compatibility: One of the main advantages of AM4
Before we conclude this review, there is an important note to make about motherboard support. AMD pushed to make most AM4 motherboards and CPUs compatible with each other. This may seem obvious, given that they are both referred to as AM4 products, but with the first AM4 components being released in 2017, this is a really big achievement.
More importantly, it also means that you have plenty of options when it comes to motherboards, which helps squeeze the 5700X’s value proposition. As our benchmarks show, the Ryzen 7 5700X isn’t quite on par with Intel’s Core i5-12600K, and the latter’s $11 lower price tag seems to be making the decision. If you already have an AM4 motherboard, the 5700X gives you an easy upgrade option from an earlier Ryzen processor. If you can avoid buying a new motherboard, that makes the Ryzen 7 5700X a much better deal.
The advantage is hard to measure when it comes to building a new system, as budget options are available for both platforms. It can be helpful to consider which motherboards fit your budget before choosing any processor.
Conclusion: Best Ryzen 7 Deal
With its low price of $299.99, AMD’s Ryzen 7 5700X is definitely an attractive option for any PC. Overall, it offers better value than the Ryzen 7 5800X, with surprisingly close performance for $150 less. If you’re building an AMD system and torn between these two processors, we highly recommend the 5700X. If you’re not afraid of overclocking a bit, you can probably erase the performance difference, as 100MHz is the least you can overclock a CPU for nowadays.
Like we said, the Ryzen 7 5700X has more trouble against Intel’s Core i5-12600K, which is slightly cheaper and performs better in most tests. For this reason, the 5700X is realistically best viewed as an option for upgrades, allowing Ryzen 1000, 2000 or 3000 desktop owners to get a significant performance boost without having to buy an all-new PC. It might also be worth buying a new system, but it probably depends on whether you can get a better deal on the motherboard to match the CPU. Otherwise, the Core i5-12600K is more tempting, especially since it’s not on a dead-end platform.
With performance that rivals the Ryzen 7 5800X at a lower price, AMD’s Ryzen 7 5700X is arguably the best value in the Ryzen 7 5000 series, but it can’t stand up to Intel’s new “Alder Lake” processors.
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