AMD Ryzen 9 5950X vs Intel Core i9 12900K – Final Comparison

The rivalry between these two companies has taken center stage over the past couple of years, and finally, in 2021, both AMD and Intel made some of their best possible chips. Intel is finally back at a level with AMD, finally switching to a 10nm process with Alder Lake but as it stands, there has to be one winner.

Although we had a hard time comparing each of these main CPUs, at the end of this article you will know which team you should choose, is it the red team or the blue team. So, let’s quickly start the final comparison between AMD Ryzen 9 5950X and Intel Core i9 12900K processors and help you decide which one to buy this holiday season.

Where does the competition stand?

Gamers and productivity users have been blessed with high-performance CPUs since AMD announced its Ryzen processors in 2017. However, it really took it to another level when it announced 12 and 16 core CPUs in 2019 with the Ryzen 9 3900X and Ryzen 9 3950X straight.

Since then while gamers still preferred Intel, a large group of users began to switch to AMD. With great futuristic compatibility and a wide assortment, AMD quickly became a fan favorite in no time. In 2020, it rocked the laptop industry, then the data center market, then came the new Ryzen 5000 series processors along with the RX 6000 series of Radeon GPUs.

Intel vs AMD: Who Will Win the FPGA Lead?

2020 was one of the best years for AMD as it somehow snatched the gaming crown from Intel. Now a year after the Ryzen 5000 series, Intel has finally announced its 12th generation Alder Lake processors based on a new hybrid architecture, packing more cores than before but drawing more power than ever before!

This new approach got me really excited and after testing the Core i9 12900K, I can assure you that the leaks were true. It can definitely compete with a powerful processor like the Ryzen 9 5950X even though Intel has 8 small cores while AMD has all 16 high-performance cores.

However, on paper, AMD has one clear advantage over Intel in TDP, the Ryzen 9 5950X only has a maximum TDP of 105W while the Core i9-12900K has a base TDP of 125W and can suck up to 241W. This means that AMD is not only efficient but also generates less heat thanks to the actual 7nm process while Intel finally switched to the 10nm process they call the Intel 7.

However, with its expensive LGA 1700 platform, Intel brought prominent features like PCI Gen 5, DDR5 RAM support, Wi-Fi 6E, and much more. So, a natural upgrade to the new platform with the new 12th generation processors will cost you a lot of money while the more affordable Ryzen 5000 motherboards.

Intel Core i9 12900K Review-

Each has its own unique character and features that make it more purchasable but when talking about the raw performance of these CPUs, let’s see who will win:

Intel Configuration Specifications:

AMD Ryzen 5950X + Radeon RX 6900 XT = The Absolute Best From The Red Team Tested!

AMD Configuration Specifications:

  • Motherboard: Gigabyte X570 UD
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 9 5950X
  • RAM: 32 GB (2 x 16) Corsair Vengeance 3200MHz DDR4 Memory
  • SSD: 240 GB WD Sn550, 480 GB Crucial SATA SSD
  • power supply: Cooler Master 750 Watt
  • GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6900XT
  • CPU cooler: Deepcool Gammaxx GTE V2.0
  • treasury: MSI Mag Forge 100R
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Pro


If you’re talking about raw numbers, Intel has come a long way in matching the performance of the Ryzen 9 5950X in multi-core scores. However, last year AMD gave everyone a surprise when they dominated the single-core standards and stunned everyone by destroying Intel.

Well, in 2021, not with the 11th generation but with the 12th generation Intel Alder Lake-S desktop processors, the blue team regained single-core performance and completely ruined everyone else. Let’s see some interesting benchmarks for all these CPUs:

As you can see in the raw benchmarks, the Core i9-12900K absolutely decimates every other processor out there with impressive single-core scores and multi-core scores that beat or match the Ryzen 9 5950X. In the truest sense of the word, both flagships performed very well, but the Intel Core i9 12900K processor outperforms the overall performance.

However, one thing you should keep in mind is that the Ryzen 9 5950X is much more efficient than the Core i9-12900K, and you can cool your AMD Ryzen with a good air cooler or moderate liquid cooling. However, to tame the Core i9, you will need a high-quality liquid AIO like the ASUS ROG RYUJIN II 360 AIO Liquid Cooler which increases the cost.

In the PCMark 10 benchmark, which is considered one of the most accurate in the world, the Ryzen 9 5950X yielded about 8,406 points which itself is really good with the Radeon RX 6900 XT. However, an Intel Core i9-12900K processor with the same GPU manages to score 9,037 points and see 7.5% better performance with Intel.

So, the moral of the productivity story is that these two absolute flagships are head-to-head with each other, but this time the productivity performance is pretty close. Gone are the days when Intel was very reluctant to provide more cores, however, AMD being the pioneer in this is more efficient at offering superior performance.

the games

In gaming, Intel has always been the king, but last year AMD’s powerful Ryzen 5000 lineup completely changed this, while Intel made claims of a turnaround with the 11th generation but were unlucky as the Ryzen 9 5900X took its place among gamers. Now, Intel has made its 12th generation processors insanely powerful in single-core performance, so many of them can easily topple AMD Ryzen 5000 processors.

Here, we took the Intel Core i9 12900K overkill and it’s the absolute best against AMD’s current absolute best, the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X. Here are the gaming benchmarks with AMD’s flagship Radeon RX 6900 XT GPU across several new modern games:

At 1440p you can clearly see that the Intel Core i9 12900K destroys the Ryzen 9 5950X in almost all games and the difference widens when you play at lower quality. This demonstrates the raw power of the new Intel flagship 12 as in a lot of games there is only a 70fps difference due to the CPU.

Except for Control, in all games, Intel’s new CPU is destroying AMD’s Ryzen 9 5950X and it clearly shows how Intel is dominating this time around.

Obviously at 4K the difference is a lot less but as you can see Intel dominates games like Control and delivers better performance while in other games there isn’t much difference in native 4K. Overall, Intel clearly dominates gaming and demonstrates the massive improvements it has made with its powerful single-core performance.

In games like CS: GO, Intel delivers excellent single-core performance giving over 400 frames per second in 4K while delivering hundreds of frames per second at 1440p or 4K in Far Cry 6. Guadians of the Galaxy also perform very well with Core i9 12900K paired with the RX 6900 XT.

Although the Intel Core i9-12900K is a lot of power and getting hot, if you have a proper cooling solution, and enough power to tame the beast, you can get some serious numbers and an extra boost in frame rates just by changing the CPU. This pretty much justifies the cost of upgrading to a new platform and you have other features like PCIe Gen 5 support or DDR5 RAM support among others.

Which one should you choose?

Now, this is the most dangerous part of the article as you have to pick only one aspect, I would say both AMD Ryzen 9 5950X and Intel Core i9 12900K are really great CPUs and so far the older Ryzen 9 5950X is coming back cheaper then Core i9 -12900K.

So, if you are a productivity-centric user or don’t want to spend extra to buy an expensive LGA 1700 motherboard with a socket, then choosing an AMD Ryzen 9 5950X would make more sense. Sure, you won’t get insane gaming performance with a Ryzen processor but at the end of the day it’s still decent.

However, if you’re a serious gamer or someone who needs the absolute best performance no matter the spend, I’d say the Intel Core i9-12900K is a better choice because its platform is also more future-friendly with new features on board. Which one do you want to buy? Tell us in the comments below… 😎

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