The AMD Ryzen 7 7700X is a processor with eight cores and 16 threads, making it one powerful mid-range CPU. If you play some games but don't do anything with creative software, this may be the better choice to save some money.
- More affordable
- DDR5 RAM
- PCIe 5.0
- Less power
- Lower TDP
- Fewer cores/threads
- Weaker performance
If you need a little more power, AMD's Ryzen 9 7950X is available with 16 cores and 32 threads. It's a monster, requiring considerable amounts of power and adequate cooling, but is ideal for those who run creator software.
- More cores/threads
- More powerful
- DDR5 RAM
- PCIe 5.0
- Higher power consumption
- Higher TDP
- More expensive
Both the AMD Ryzen 7 7700X and AMD Ryzen 9 7950X are competent processors, especially for the price. Modern desktop processors are excellent compared to what was available years past. Regardless of which you'd eventually pick, you're going to have a powerful PC. But which is the best CPU?
For performance, the only choice is the Ryzen 9 7950X. It's outright better with double the number of cores and threads. This allows the processor to score much higher in benchmarks that can take advantage of more physical cores. This is especially useful in creator suites like video and photo editing software or working with big data.
The AMD Ryzen 7 7700X is a better value pick and has enough performance for modern games.
|Header Cell - Column 0||AMD Ryzen 7 7700X||AMD Ryzen 9 7950X|
|Speed||Up to 5.4GHz||Up to 5.7GHz|
|GPU||Radeon (2 cores)||Radeon (2 cores)|
The AMD Ryzen 7 7700X comes in at $399 whilst the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X commands a price tag of $699. With this generation of processors from AMD, it's possible to save even more and opt for the Ryzen 5 7600X, a very powerful processor in its own right. But if you need even more from the chip, the Ryzen 7 and Ryzen 9 offers just that.
The two AMD Ryzen processors were released in 2022 as part of the Zen 4 launch. They're built using the same architecture and have an iGPU, but that's where the similarities end. The Ryzen 9 7950X has 8 additional cores, is able to boost higher to 5.7GHz, and has double the amount of cache, but this all results in a significantly higher TDP.
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To test processors, we use a suite of benchmarks. These are synthetic tests and while they don't provide a good look into how it'll perform in real-world scenarios, the results will allow us to rank the processors by how much performance is available. Looking at the charts below, it's clear to see just how much of a difference the additional cores make.
The AMD Ryzen 9 7950X is about as good as you can get from AMD without going into Threadripper territory. When it comes to comparing processors, performance is the most prominent metric, followed by power and thermals.
Intel and AMD are making good use of the available thermal headroom with 13th Gen and Ryzen 7000 processors. This means that regardless of which Ryzen processor you pick from this generation, you'll see high-temperature readings. This is by design and AMD states the processors are capable of running at a sustained 95C.
Pairing the AMD Ryzen 7 7700X with a capable GPU will create quite the gaming PC that can handle most modern PC games. Upping your game to the Ryzen 9 7950X and you've got ample performance for games that can make use of it. But really, the latter CPU should be used primarily for heavier workloads.
It's impressive just how much CPU performance one can enjoy without spending so much on the flagship processors. The AMD Ryzen 7 7700X is a fine example with ample power for gaming.
When you're ready to take your PC performance to a whole new level, the AMD Ryzen 9 7950X is ready to go. It costs a little more than the Ryzen 7, but has double the cores and threads, as well as the ability to boost higher.
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Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.