Is the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X good for gaming?
More cores don't equal better gaming
A fairly common misconception among gamers is that more cores means better gaming performance. Unfortunately, that's simply not the case for many, many games. A CPU like the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X with its eight cores is a theoretically fast processor that most games will fail to fully utilize.
The reason for this is complicated and gets into how games are made, what kind of systems they're targeted for (including consoles), and the reality of what processing power can even do for modern games. The rule of thumb is that more cores is great for tasks like rendering video and 3D modeling, but it's not going to make Call of Duty: Warzone run any better.
The Ryzen 7 5800X loses to its competition
The Ryzen 7 5800X is not a bad processor by any means, but when you consider price and performance compared to AMD's other CPUs, you start to see the value in this chip seep away. The Ryzen 7 5800X sits at about $420 — give or take a bit considering the immense amount of demand right now. It's a steep price considering it performs the same as the $100 cheaper Ryzen 5 5600X for gaming. So then the question becomes: Why spend a lot more money for the same benefits?
It gets worse when you realize that it's not that much cheaper than the Ryzen 5950X, 16-core processor. While it too won't do much for gaming, it's going to shred other intensive tasks for only a little bit more money. The Ryzen 7 5800X doesn't sit in a confident middle ground between the two. Instead, it doesn't really have a clear target and shouldn't be your choice for gaming.
To back up all of these claims even more, the Ryzen 7 5800X doesn't even perform that much better for gaming anyway. Even in the hypothetical case where you pick this processor up, the results are a couple FPS more than previous gen AMD processors. You read that right: a couple FPS. Even paired with a solid GPU, it won't get you far. That's simply not worth it, especially since the extra money you spend doesn't even get you a pack-in fan.
The only redeeming thing about the Ryzen 7 5800X might be its overclocking potential, except that too isn't notable. Yes, it's overclockable, but it doesn't do much to its single-core performance, which is integral to better performance in games. It doesn't mean you'll get nothing out of the 5800X with overclocking, but it's barely worth fiddling with if it means you'll have to look into strong cooling solutions on top.
The 5600X does what the 5800X does at a lower price
The 5600X is quite simply the only gaming CPU to get at the moment. It's price-to-performance ratio knocks the 5800X out of the water.
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