There's Never Been a Better Time to Upgrade Your AMD CPU (Updated)

Ryzen die
(Image credit: Fritchenz Fritz)

It's never been a better time to upgrade your PC by swapping in a new AMD CPU. This year's Cyber Monday happens after CPU sales sit at a 30-year low since earlier this year, creating an unexpected CPU oversupply that's led to steady price cuts over the last several months. However, retailers still need to clear out stock, so Black Friday brings even deeper price cuts on previous-gen AMD AM4 processors, resulting in the best overall prices we've seen in years. That's great news for builders, particularly if they're looking to upgrade an existing AMD PC.

Both Intel and AMD recently rolled out new chip families, and AMD has reduced the pricing of its new Ryzen 7000 chips by up to 33% for Black Friday, helping the value proposition. However, high up-front costs for AM5 motherboards and DDR5 memory continue to dissuade some builders. 

Meanwhile, Intel's 13th-Gen Raptor Lake chips hold a clear-cut pricing and performance advantage over AMD's Ryzen 7000 chips on our list of Best CPUs for gaming, and it doesn't look like we'll see any big Black Friday discounts from Team Blue for its current-gen CPUs.

Some folks might want to sit out the current-gen chips or simply don't have the cash to pony up for an entirely new build. However, you can step up to a more powerful chip with very little hassle if you have an AM4 motherboard, and all of the chips we have listed below are selling at all-time lows.  

AMD's AM4 motherboard ecosystem has been around since 2017, and you can drop most of the chips listed above into an existing board — just ensure that you have sufficient power delivery and cooling, particularly for the highest-end chips.

The Ryzen 5 5600, in particular, stands out as a great deal, even though it is now closer to normal MSRP than the $114 sale price we saw earlier. Sure, it's still a far cry from the debut price of $199 a mere five months ago. That relatively high launch pricing was the main reason for its lukewarm reception, but this lower pricing is incredibly compelling for value seekers. Scoring a six-core 12-thread chip with basically the same performance as its more expensive counterpart, the 5600X, for $137 is an incredible value if you have an AM4 system with a Zen 1 or Zen 2 processor. In fact, it's even within $1 of the Ryzen 5 3600, a similar six-core chip that comes with the dated Zen 2 architecture but became legendary for its value.  

The Ryzen 5 5600 also makes the Ryzen 5 5600X, which is also on sale, look much less enticing — these chips offer nearly identical performance, particularly after overclocking.

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AMD Ryzen 5000 Series CPUs
Zen 3 Ryzen 5000 Series ProcessorsBF SALESEP (MSRP)Cores/ThreadsBase/Boost Freq. TDP
Ryzen 9 5950X$479$79916 / 323.4 / 4.9 GHz105W
Ryzen 9 5900X$329$59912 / 243.7 / 4.8 GHz105W
Ryzen 7 5800X$222$4498 / 163.8 / 4.7 GHz105W
Ryzen 7 5700X$199$2998 / 163.4 / 4.6 GHz65W
Ryzen 5 5600X$159$2996 / 123.7 / 4.6 GHz65W
Ryzen 5 5600$137$1996 / 123.5 / 4.4 GHz65W

The Ryzen 7 5700X is also at all-time low pricing. For $199, you get eight cores and 16 threads that deliver nearly the same performance as the Ryzen 7 5800X that's also on sale, leading us to declare that the 5700X was merely a price cut for the 5800X in disguise. Sure, the Ryzen 7 5800X is at all-time low pricing, but you should just buy the 5700X instead.  

If you want to step up a tier, the Ryzen 9 5900X is a great value at an all-time low of $329. This lets you drop in 12 cores and 24 threads that operate at up to 4.8 GHz for incredible threaded performance. This is also the fastest Ryzen 5000 gaming chip. 

That brings us to the Ryzen 9 5950X. This CPU brings incredible performance to bear with 16 cores and 32 threads that easily chew through the heaviest of workloads. This top-tier chip debuted at $799 earlier this year, but a string of successive price reductions, including this $70 markdown for Black Friday, brings it down to an all-time low of $479. This is the most powerful CPU to land on the AM4 platform, and it's a great deal for upgraders at this price point. 

Finally, we'd be remiss if we didn't mention the Ryzen 7 5800X3D. This is the fastest CPU for gaming that will slot into the AM4 platform, but you do have to accept the tradeoff of lower performance in all other types of work.

The Ryzen 7 5800X3D currently retails for $349, but that is actually slightly higher than we've seen over the last few months. We'll keep an eye out to see if there are any Black Friday CPU sales on this processor and will update as necessary. 

Paul Alcorn
Managing Editor: News and Emerging Tech

Paul Alcorn is the Managing Editor: News and Emerging Tech for Tom's Hardware US. He also writes news and reviews on CPUs, storage, and enterprise hardware.

  • zecoeco
    That's true for sure. Best deal right now is probably the 7600x being sold for $199 on eBay!
  • EtaLasquera
    I've switched from 3600X to 5700X.
    It's a great upgrade.
    For people with zen1 or zen1+ it's a huge upgrade

    Forza zen 2 vs Zen 3
  • SSGBryan
    The 5700x is going for the same price it went for 2 months ago (when I bought mine).

    It's a great deal, but a lot of these "black friday" prices were available a couple months ago.