AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. Intel Core i7-11700K: Which CPU is best for you?

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X (Image credit: Windows Central)

The fight between the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. the Intel Core i7-11700K is a tough one. Both CPUs sit at high price points for what they offer. But both CPUs are also incredibly powerful in their own right. To figure out which is the best CPU for you, you might just go with your preferred brand, but you can also dig down into the smallest details. Here's which CPU you should go with.

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. Intel Core i7-11700K: Price

Intel Core i7-10700K

Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

Price is at the top of the list when you compare the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. the Intel Core i7-11700K. With the recent chip shortage, each CPU's price can fluctuate. Although prices seem to be stabilizing at the moment, it's still important to consider if you're trying to decide between the two.

The Ryzen 5800X ends up at a slightly higher price than the Intel Core i7-11700K. The extra cash doesn't change a whole lot, but it's worth considering if you're trying to build a computer at a specific price point. You need to consider the cost of proper cooling too since neither CPU comes with its own fan.

The even prices should give you an idea of what we're dealing with here though. These CPUs perform identically in most uses. The price reflects that similarity and ultimately, you can't make a bad decision here based purely on cost.

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. Intel Core i7-11700K: Gaming

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 AMD Ryzen 7 5800XIntel Core i7-11700K
Cores8 (3.8GHz)8 (3.6GHz)
Boost speeds4.7GHz5.0GHz
L3 cache32MB16MB

For most people, the AMD Ryzen 5800X barely wins in the competition for gaming performance against the Intel Core i7-11700K. For people playing games at 1080p, the Ryzen chip ekes out a bit more average FPS than Intel's offering — and by a bit, I mean less than 10%. It's really nothing but a number cruncher's bullet point. That said, if you have to choose between the two, it makes the decision a little easier.

At higher resolutions, the divide between the two CPUs narrows. They're effectively the same CPU for anyone with these types of builds. Gaming performance isn't a decision-maker for this competition, but it's good to know that if you plan to do a lot of it, both of them will handle it well.

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. Intel Core i7-11700K: Rendering and application performance

Intel Core I7 10700k Cpu Stocket

Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Rich Edmonds / Windows Central)

This race is close too. In performance for simple web browsing and other light applications, the Intel Core i7-11700K outperforms the Ryzen 7 5800x. But, unsurprisingly, not by much. The difference is so tiny that you might not even notice it, but if you're a power user in this category, it might be something you think about when deciding between these CPUs.

Even for more multi-threaded applications, Intel's CPU wins out. For video tasks, the Ryzen CPU can outshine the Intel CPU with its x264-based rendering, but outside of that, the 11700K is a little faster. Both CPUs have products in their respective lines that do this sort of work even better, so if this is a worry, you might consider looking elsewhere.

If you had to choose between the two, the Intel CPU with its slightly lower price can give you an edge when it comes to running intensive tasks on your PC. The problem is that these sorts of workloads aren't that common for normal users, so you should take this one-on-one with a grain of salt.

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. Intel Core i7-11700K: Power efficiency

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Power efficiency is where things finally get interesting between these two CPUs, and the AMD offering is the clear winner. There's really no contest because AMD has put a lot of work into power usage with its line of CPUs compared to Intel. If there's anything that's undeniable about Ryzen CPUs, it's that they do their jobs efficiently.

Power efficiency matters because it also means lower temperatures, which means less overall cooling and blaring fans required. This is incredibly important in builds that include motherboards like the Gigabyte X570-I AORUS Pro. For an average PC builder or owner, this can have an impact on daily use. If one CPU equals fewer worries like overheating and cheaper power bills over the other, then it's notable in the buying decision.

For number-minded folks, the Ryzen CPU hits a max of about 118W at stock settings while the Intel CPU can get up to 207W. That's a big number compared to what the Ryzen chip hits and when you also consider how much your CPU will be doing on a day-to-day basis, it adds up.

AMD Ryzen 7 5800X vs. Intel Core i7-11700K: Which should you buy?

The Ryzen 5800X and the Intel Core i7-11700K are almost the same CPUs to a person looking to clamp something into your PC and forget about it. For high-end users, there are some slight differences, but even then, the winner is only one, tiny step ahead. That level of difference doesn't matter for real world use, especially if you don't have a hobby or job that requires this specific type of CPU power.

That being said, the Ryzen 7 5800X is the one CPU of the two you can buy and know that over a long period of use, it'll be the better CPU. If you have really specific needs, like video rendering, the Intel CPU could have enough of a performance increase to sway your decision. But when it comes to pure power efficiency, the Ryzen 7 5800X is the CPU to buy. It not only helps keep your PC build slightly more green, but it helps free up power for the rest of your build.

Tyler Colp

Tyler Colp is a freelance writer for Windows Central. He's written about tech, games, and the culture around them across the internet. Ask him anything about Dark Souls or just follow him on Twitter.