AMD Ryzen 5 5600X Review, Enter The New EraNovember 5, 2020
A month after the competition announced its new graphics solutions, AMD claps back by introducing their next-generation Ryzen and Radeon lineups.
The Ryzen 5000 series processors and Radeon RX 6000 series graphics solutions match and even surpass the current stack of GPUs and CPUs in the market right now. And according to AMD’s previous presentations, their upcoming Ryzen processors and Radeon GPUs will have a significant performance uplift when compared to its own previous generation offerings, and even against the competition’s current stack. These new AMD lineups will be released this month, with the Ryzen 5000 series taking center stage first.
In line with the impending release, we got ourselves the Ryzen 5 5600X to review. And to start things off, we want to put it out there that we are really impressed with the performance it and the other 5000 series CPUs deliver.
Vermeer: first processors under the Zen 3 architecture
The Ryzen 5000 series processors take pride in their new architecture design, the Zen 3 architecture.
The Zen 3 architecture promises to significantly increase from the previous Ryzen processors in all aspects, with great focus on single-core performance. To do so, the Zen microarchitecture is reimagined with a new CCX design that has all the cores laid out on a single block, reducing the latency between cores. Additionally, shifting to this kind of layout has also allowed the cores to have equal access to the 32MB cache, enabling reduced core-to-cache latency, essentially improving gaming performance. The updated architecture also has a faster fetching capability, lower latency, and an overall higher bandwidth than the previous generation. All the architectural improvements of Zen 3 enabled the Ryzen 5000 series processors to deliver 19% IPC improvement from the previous Zen 2 architecture.
Moreover, AMD has achieved a 24% improvement in performance-per-watt on the Vermeer processors, enabling them to have performance uplifts without increasing power consumption or TDP. To back this up, our friends over at Gadget Pilipinas has pitted the Ryzen 9 5900X with its direct competitor, the i9-10900K, showing how much performance the new chip has with the same amount of power consumption seen on the previous Matisse chips.
Since its release in 2016, the AM4 platform has seen and supported many Zen-based processors, and until now, it is still the platform for the whole Zen-based processor stack that now includes the Ryzen 5000 series processors.
Early this month, AMD’s motherboard partners have announced the release of the latest BIOS for their respective 500 series motherboards to enable the support for the Ryzen 5000 series processors. Aside from that, the latest AMD BIOS AGESA code promises a much stable and responsive system.
AMD, through its motherboard partners, has also announced that a BIOS code that will enable select 400 series motherboards gain support for Ryzen 5000 series processors is currently in the works. It will soon be available through motherboard partners.
So, as of this writing, 500 series motherboards are the only choice if you plan to build a Ryzen 5000 series based system.
Ryzen 5 5600X, the new point of gaming
The competition’s 1080P gaming performance was the bane of the previous Ryzen processors. Even with their higher number of cores, the previous Ryzen processors had difficulty catching up with the competition’s gaming performance.
The slower gaming performance of the previous Ryzen processors was due to their CCD (Core Chiplet Die) design with two CCXs (Core Complexes) with an equal number of cores with equally divided amounts of L3 cache. They lagged behind the competition in 1080p gaming because of two reasons. One is its CCX communication latency. The second, and probably the main reason for the lower 1080p gaming performance, would be the divided cache. As most games favor an easily accessible cache, the previous Ryzen processors’ divided cache holds back their 1080p gaming performance.
AMD addressed this in the Zen 3 architecture, unifying all the cores and the L3 cache in a single core complex, which significantly improves the core-to-core and core-to-cache communications. And now that the L3 cache isn’t divided into two elements, games that frequently use the L3 cache will now be able to access 32MB rather than 16MB.
All these architectural improvements are in the gaming-centric CPU of the Ryzen 5000 series, the Ryzen 5 5600X.
Almost identical, always critical
As the successor of the Ryzen 5 3600X, the Ryzen 5 5600X is built with 6 cores, 12 threads, and 32MB of L3 cache. Though its base clock is 100MHz less than its predecessor, the Ryzen 5 5600X boasts a 4.7GHz boost clock, a 300Mhz increase from the previous offering. As we’ve mentioned, the Ryzen 5000 series has better performance-per-watt than the previous Ryzen processors. While most of the 5000 series processors and 3000 series processors have the same TDP, the Ryzen 5 5600X differs as it’s fused with only 65W of TDP, 30W lower than the previous generation’s 3600X.
Another notable difference from the previous generation is the included cooler. While the Ryzen 5 3600X comes with a Wraith Spire cooler, the Ryzen 5 5600X will only get a Wraith Stealth cooler, day and night when it comes to cooling performance, if we may say so ourselves. It is also great to note that only the Ryzen 5 5600X comes with an included cooler in the current stack of Ryzen 5000 series processors.
Processor: Ryzen 5 5600X (Stock)
Motherboard: ASRock X570 Taichi
Memory: HyperX Predator DDR4 4200MHz 16GB (8 x 2) (Running @ 3200MHz)
Drive: Seagate FireCuda 2TB, Kingmax PX3280 M.2 NVMe SSD 256GB
PSU: Corsair RM750 80 Plus Gold Fully Modular
Case: Corsair Carbide Spec-05
We’ll focus on the 1080p gaming performance of the Ryzen 5 5600X on this one, as AMD markets it as a gaming-focused CPU. We run our whole setup on stock configuration, replicating a fresh build. But we got our memory running at 3200MHz, as this is the top official frequency that it can support according to its product page.