VRMark and 3DMark on Ryzen 5 3500X
Synthetic gaming benchmarks often aren't indicative of real-world performance, but the 3DMark DX11 and DX12 tests are interesting because they measure the amount of raw computational horsepower exposed to the game engine. For now, most of today's game engines don't scale as linearly with additional compute resources, but these tests help us gauge how games could exploit processing resources as the engines become more sophisticated.
In the synthetic world of the Fire Strike benchmark, the Ryzen 5 3500X falls to its more powerful 3600X and 3600 counterparts, which isn't surprising given the 3500X's lack of threading. However, The Ryzen 5 3500X outstrips the Core i5-9400F due to its 700 MHz base clock speed advantage. A similar story plays out in the Time Spy benchmark, though the Core i5-9400F wrests away the lead at stock settings. The 3500X edges past after overclocking to 4.2 GHz, but the Core i5-9400F can't fire back due to a locked multiplier that prevents overclocking.
VRMark test prizes per-core performance (a mixture of frequency and IPC), and it obviously prefers physical cores and L3 cache. The 3500X's lack of threading helps as it beats out the more expensive Ryzen 3600X and takes the lead against all but the overclocked Core i3-9350KF. That bodes well for performance in lightly-threaded games.
Civilization VI AI and Stockfish on Ryzen 5 3500X
Civilization VI prizes per-core performance, so it isn't surprising to see the overclocked 9350KF take the lead in this test of AI engine performance in a turn-based strategy game, but it is surprising to see the overclocked Ryzen 5 3500X trail by a mere 0.01 seconds. At stock settings, the 3500X unseats the Core i5-9400F.
Stockfish, an open-source chess engine, is designed to extract the utmost performance from many-core chips by scaling well up to 512 cores. That scalability meshes well with the chips that support threading, but obviously punishes the 3500X. In either case, the 3500X matches the Core i5-9400F thread-for-thread but has a much higher base frequency, lending it the advantage.
Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation on Ryzen 5 3500X
Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation loves cores and threads but clock rates play a role, too. The Ryzen 5 3500X falls to the previous-gen Ryzen 5 2600X that comes armed with twelve threads, and essentially ties the Core i5-9400F. In spite of the 2600X's less-performant previous-gen Zen architecture, more threads in these types of games often equates to more performance.
Civilization VI Graphics Test on Ryzen 5 3500X
Civilization VI is known for its preference for high clock rates. The 3500X trails the stock 3600X slightly, but overclocking propels it into the lead as it even beats the nimble overclocked Core i3-9350KF. The 3500X's lack of threading and massive 32MB cache obviously come into play here.
Dawn of War III on Ryzen 5 3500X
The Warhammer 40,000 benchmark responds well to threading, but it's clear that clock speed and IPC has an impact as the overclocked 4C/4T Core i3-9350KF takes the top of the chart. The 3500X is potent, though, as it notches a big lead at stock settings over the Core i5-9400F and takes second place after overclocking.
Far Cry 5 on Ryzen 5 3500X
The overclocked Core i3-9350KF takes a huge lead in Far Cry 5 while the overclocked 3500X struggles to match it at stock settings. In either case, the 3500X trails the 9350KF slightly at stock settings, but takes a big lead after tuning.
Final Fantasy XV on Ryzen 5 3500X
We run this test with the standard quality preset to sidestep the impact of a bug that causes the game engine to render off-screen objects with the higher-resolution setting. Threading becomes more of an advantage here as the overclocked Ryzen 5 3600 ekes out a lead over its stock counterpart the 3600X. It also beats the tuned 3500X.
Hitman 2 on Ryzen 5 3500X
Hitman 2 finds the overclocked Ryzen 5 3500X once again taking the top of the chart, reminding us that hyperthreading can be a burden in some games. The Core i5-9400F falls behind the 3500X once again, but that's becoming a repetitive theme.
Project Cars 2 on Ryzen 5 3500X
Although Project CARS 2 is purportedly optimized for threading, clock rates obviously affect this title's frame rates. The 9400F takes a slight win in this title, while the Core i3-9350KF unleashes the power of Intel's clock speed advantage.
World of Tanks enCore on Ryzen 5 3500X
The World of Tanks benchmark doesn't hold any surprises, the 9350KF once again proves to be a potent force while the 3500X posts surprisingly strong results.
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