Skip to main content

CPU Benchmarks and Hierarchy 2021: Intel and AMD Processors Ranked

CPU benchmarks hierarchy cover image
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Our CPU benchmarks performance hierarchy ranks all the current and previous generation Intel and AMD processors, including all of the Best CPUs for Gaming, based on performance. Your CPU has a huge effect on overall performance and, to many, is a computer's most important component. CPU benchmarks help us suss out the differences, but when it comes time to buy a CPU for your desktop, you'll find a dizzying collection of model numbers and specs from both Intel and AMD.

We've listed the best CPUs for gaming and best processors for workstations in other articles, but if you want to know how each chip stacks up against all the others and how we come to our decisions, this CPU benchmarks hierarchy is for you. We also have an article covering CPU performance in Cyberpunk 2077.

AMD has its Ryzen 5000G APUs coming to market in August, but we jumped the gun and reviewed the Ryzen 7 5700G. This chip's strong integrated graphics could be a godsend to gamers looking to sit out the GPU shortage, provided they keep their expectations in check. We've included the chip in both our standard rankings below and also added a new integrated graphics CPU benchmark ranking so you can see how the chips stack up relative to prior-gen AMD chips and Intel's lineup. We'll add the Ryzen 5 5600G after we post our review.

These new chips build on AMD's resounding success with its Zen 3 architecture. We have the full Ryzen 5000 lineup in our CPU benchmarks, including the Ryzen 5 5600X, Ryzen 9 5950X, 5900X, and Ryzen 7 5800X, along with all of the previous-gen Zen 3, Zen+, and Zen 1 versions of those chips.

Intel's 11th-generation Rocket Lake-S CPUs are in the other corner, led by the Intel Core i9-11900K and Core i5-11600K that have improved Intel's competitive standing. As a result of its solid performance and AMD's continued chip shortages, the Core i5-11600K is now our Best CPU for gaming. The Core i5-11400 is the hidden star of Intel's new lineup. AMD has no response for this chip on the lower-end of its price range – in fact, the Core i5-11400 grapples with the two-year-old Ryzen 5 3600. 

If you want to see Intel and AMD's most important models square off head-to-head in our CPU benchmarks, check out these articles:

AMD is plagued by chip shortages, but it isn't sitting still — At Computex 2020, the company announced that it will bring new Zen 3-powered Ryzen models to market that will come armed with its new 3D V-Cache tech. This technique stacks L3 cache on top of the compute die, thus enabling up a mind-boggling 192MB of cache per chip to provide up to 15% more performance in gaming. The first chips enter production at the end of the year.

We'll explain how we ranked the processors under each table. The game testing ranking is first. We also include an application performance metric in our application score tables, which we've split up into single- and multi-threaded measurements (below gaming table). The most powerful chip gets a 100, and all others are scored relative to it. If you want our recommendations for specific price bands, please check out our Best CPUs for gaming page.

We are busily retesting our full arsenal of processors with a newer version of Windows 10 to measure performance for our CPU benchmarks. As such, chips without a score are ranked according to their previous rankings with our older CPU benchmarks test suite. We'll add specific measurements for those chips as our CPU benchmarks testing continues. 

CPU Benchmarks and Performance Hierarchy Charts

Image 1 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 2 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 3 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 4 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 5 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 6 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 7 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 8 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 9 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 10 of 10

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

We rank all the Intel and AMD processors in the tables below, but we don't include overclocked performance or 99th percentile fps rankings. You can see all of those numbers in the charts above. We've also added separate charts for integrated graphics testing.

Bear in mind that the charts above use the raw performance numbers, whereas our CPU benchmarks rankings below use a score to rank the chips relative to one another. Admittedly, the charts are getting a bit packed as we expand our rankings pool, but we'll work to separate this out into different classes as our CPU benchmarks database grows.

This group of results also only include the chips that have passed through our newest test suite. The pricing represents MSRPs, but given the chip shortage, you likely won't find many of these chips at these prices at retail.

Intel and AMD Gaming CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy 

Gaming CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy
1080p Gaming Score1440p Gaming ScoreCPUCores/ThreadsBase/Boost GHzTDPBuy
AMD Ryzen 9 5900X100%98.5%Zen 312 / 243.7 / 4.8105WRyzen 9 5900X
AMD Ryzen 9 5950X99.94%97.27%Zen 316 / 323.4 / 4.9105WRyzen 9 3950X
Intel Core i9-11900K98.65%100%Rocket Lake8 / 163.5 / 5.3125WCore i9-11900K
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X96.71%96.54%Zen 38 / 163.8 / 4.7105WRyzen 7 5800X
AMD Ryzen 5 5600X96.49%96.23%Zen 36 / 123.7 / 4.665WRyzen 5 5600X
Intel Core i7-11700K92.06%94.60%Rocket Lake8 / 163.6 / 5.0125WCore i7-11700K
Intel Core i9-10900K90.69%94.08%Comet Lake10 / 203.7 / 5.3125WCore i9-9900K
Intel Core i9-10850K90.25%93.64%Comet Lake10 / 203.6 / 5.295WCore i9-10850K
Intel Core i5-11600K89.66%92.98%Rocket Lake8 / 163.9 / 4.9125WCore i5-11600K
Intel Core i5-1140086.37%90.25%Rocket Lake6 / 122.6 / 4.465WCore i5-11400
Intel Core i7-10700K86.04%90.36%Comet Lake8 / 163.8 / 5.1125WCore i7-10700K
Intel Core i9-10980XE83.25%86.41%Cascade Lake-X18 / 363.0 / 4.8165WCore i9-10980XE
Intel W-3175X82.06%84.91%Skylake28 / 563.1 / 4.3225W@Newegg
Ryzen 7 5700G*81.72%85.45%Zen 38 / 163.8 / 4.665WN/A
Intel Core i9-9900KS81.20%87.25%Coffee Lake-R8 / 164.0 / 5.0127W Intel Core i9-9900KS
Intel Core i7-10700/F~~Comet Lake8 / 162.9 / 4.865WIntel Core i7-10700
Intel Core i5-10600K80.45%84.90%Comet Lake6 / 124.1 / 4.8125W@Newegg
Intel Core i7-9700K78.53%%83.41%Coffee Lake-R8 / 83.6 / 4.995W@Amazon
Intel Core i9-9900K / F78.31%83.66%Coffee Lake-R8 / 163.6 / 5.095WCore i9-9900K
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X77.47%80.80%Zen 216 / 323.5 / 4.7105W@Amazon
AMD Threadripper 3970X77.27%80.19%Zen 232 / 643.7 / 4.5280WAMD Threadripper 3970X
AMD Threadripper 3960X76.88%79.30%Zen 224 / 483.8 / 4.5280WAMD Ryzen Threadripper 3960X
AMD Ryzen 7 3800XT76.57%81.51%Zen 28 / 163.9 / 4.7105W@Newegg
AMD Threadripper 3990X76.47%80.14%Zen 264 / 1282.9 / 4.3280WAMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X
AMD Ryzen 9 3900XT76.45%80.77%Zen 212 / 243.8 / 4.7105WRyzen 9 3900XT
AMD Ryzen 9 3900X~~Zen 212 / 243.8 / 4.6105W@Amazon
Intel Core i9-9980XE ~~Skylake18 / 364.4 / 4.5165W@B&HPhoto
AMD Ryzen 9 3900~~Zen 212 / 243.1 / 4.3105WOEM only
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X76.91%81.32%Zen 28 / 163.6 / 4.465W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 7 3800X76.05%80.88%Zen 28 / 163.9 / 4.5105W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 3600XT75.33%79.95%Zen 26 / 123.8 / 4.595W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 5 360073.21%77.72%Zen 26 / 123.6 / 4.265W @Amazon
Intel Core i9-7960X~~Skylake16 / 322.8 / 4.2165W@Newegg
Intel Core i7-8700K73.04%78.56%Coffee Lake6 / 123.7 / 4.795W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 3600X72.98%77.73%Zen 26 / 123.8 / 4.495W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 3 3300X71.99%76.70%Zen 24 / 83.8 / 4.365W@Newegg
Intel Core i5-9600K71.54%77.24%Coffee Lake-R6 / 63.7 / 4.695W@Newegg
AMD Threadripper Pro 3995WX70.59%71.24%Zen 264 / 1282.7 / 4.2280WThreadripper Pro 3995WX
Intel Core i5-8600K70.23%75.46%Coffee Lake6 / 63.6 / 4.395W@Newegg
Intel Core i7-870069.95%75.74%Coffee Lake6 / 123.2 / 4.665WCore i7-8700
Intel Core i7-8086K69.39%75.57%Coffee Lake6 / 124.0 / 5.095WCore i7-8086K
Intel Core i5-9400 / i5-9400F69.20%74.12%Coffee Lake6 / 62.9 / 4.165W@Amazon
Intel Core i5-840068.23%74.02%Coffee Lake6 / 62.8 / 4.065W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 5 3500X~~Zen 26 / 63.6 / 4.165W@Newegg
Core i3-1010066.00%71.03%Comet Lake4 / 83.6 / 4.365WCore i3-10100
AMD Ryzen 7 2700X63.14%68.43%Zen+8 / 163.7 / 4.3105W@Newegg
Ryzen 7 4750G*62.33%68.33%Zen 28 / 163.8 / 4.665WRyzen 7 4750G
AMD Ryzen 3 310061.60%66.02%Zen 24 / 83.8 / 3.965W@Newegg
Intel Core i9-7980XE~~Skylake18 / 362.6 / 4.2165W@Amazon
Intel Core i9-7900X~~Skylake10 / 203.3 / 4.3140W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 5 2600X61.39%67.17%Zen+6 / 123.6 / 4.295W@Amazon
Intel Core i7-7700K~~Kaby Lake4 / 84.2 / 4.591W@Amazon
AMD Threadripper 2990WX (GM)~~Zen+32 / 643.0 / 4.2250W@Newegg
Intel Core i7-7820X~~Skylake8 / 163.6 / 4.3140W@Amazon
AMD Threadripper 2950X (GM)~~Zen +16 / 323.5 / 4.4180W@Amazon
AMD Threadripper 2970WX~~Zen +24 / 483.0 / 4.2250W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 7 2700~~Zen+8 / 163.2 / 4.165W@Amazon
AMD Threadripper 1900X (GM)~~Zen8 / 163.8 / 4.0180W@Amazon
Intel Core i7-7700~~Kaby Lake4 / 83.6 / 4.265W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 2600~~Zen+6 / 123.4 / 3.965W@Newegg
Intel Core i7-7800X~~Skylake6 / 123.5 / 4.0140W@Newegg
Intel Core i5-7600K~~Kaby Lake4 / 43.8 / 4.291W@Amazon
AMD Threadripper 1950X (GM)~~Zen16 / 323.4 / 4.0180W@Newegg
AMD Threadripper 1920X (GM)~~Zen12 / 243.5 / 4.0180W@Amazon
Intel Core i3-9350KF60.18%67.03%Coffee Lake4 / 44.0 / 4.691W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 7 1800X57.45%62.55%Zen8 / 163.6 / 4.095W@Newegg
Intel Core i5-7600~~Kaby Lake4 / 43.5 / 4.165W@Amazon
Intel Core i3-8100~~Coffee Lake4 / 43.6 / -65W@Amazon
Intel Core i5-7500~~Kaby Lake4 / 43.4 / 3.865W@Amazon
Intel Core i5-7400~~Kaby Lake4 / 43.0 / 3.565W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 7 1700X~~Zen8 / 163.8 / 3.995W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 1600AF~~Zen +6 / 123.2 / 3.665W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 7 1700~~Zen8 / 163.0 / 3.865W@Newegg
Intel Core i3-8350K57.44%63.56%Coffee Lake4 / 44.0 / -91WCore i3 i3-8350K
Intel Core i3-910055.43%61.80%Coffee Lake-R4 / 43.6 / 4.265W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 5 1600X53.32%58.90%Zen6 / 123.6 / 4.095W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 1600~~Zen6 / 123.2 / 3.665W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 3400G52.07%57.31%Zen +4 / 83.7 / 4.265W@Amazon
Intel Core i5-7400~~Kaby Lake4 / 4 3.0 / 3.565W@Newegg
Intel Core i3-810051.66%61.38%Coffee Lake4 / 43.6 / -65W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 3 3200G49.03%54.48%Zen +4 / 43.6 / 4.065W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G47.83%52.10%Zen+4 / 83.6 / 3.965W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 5 1500X~~Zen4 / 83.5 / 3.765W@Newegg
Intel Core i3-7350K~~Kaby Lake2 / 44.2 / -60W@Newegg
Intel Pentium G5600~~Coffee Lake2 / 43.9 / -54W@Newegg
AMD Ryzen 3 2200G44.97%49.93%Zen+4 / 43.5 / 3.765W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 3 1300X~~Zen4 / 43.5 / 3.765W@Amazon
Intel Core i3-7300~~Kaby Lake2 / 44.0 / -51W@BH&Photo
Intel Pentium G560040.03%45.96%Coffee Lake2 / 43.9 / -54W@Intel
Intel Pentium G540039.01%44.53%Coffee Lake2 / 43.7 / -54W@Amazon
Intel Core i3-7100~~Kaby Lake2 / 43.9 / -51W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 5 1400~~Zen4 / 83.2 / 3.465W@Amazon
Intel Pentium G4620~~Kaby Lake2 / 43.7 / -54W@Newegg
Intel Pentium G4560~~Kaby Lake2 / 43.5 / -54W@Newegg
AMD Athlon 3000G~~Zen+2 / 43.5 / -35W@Amazon
AMD Athlon 240GE~~Zen2 / 43.5 / -35W@Amazon
AMD Athlon 220GE~~Zen2 / 43.4 / -35W@Amazon
AMD Athlon 200GE~~Zen2 / 43.2 / -35W@Amazon
AMD Ryzen 3 1200~~Zen4 / 43.1 / 3.265W@Amazon
Zhaoxin KaiXian KX-U6780A~~LuJiaZui 8 / 82.7 / -70WN/A
AMD A10-9700~~Bristol Ridge4 / 43.5 / 3.865W@Newegg

*indicates an APU tested with a discrete GPU. Note: These types of processors are geared for performance with integrated graphics - please see individual reviews or our section below for those performance rankings.

We've ranked all the consumer Intel 11th, 10th, 9th, 8th, and 7th Gen processors, along with AMD's Ryzen and Threadripper chips from all four generations. We have two rankings for each chip, based on 1080p and 1440p CPU gaming benchmarks, but the chart is aligned sequentially based on the 1080p game results. The 1440p listings aren't listed in sequential order due to the unfortunate limitations with our tables. Pay attention to the 1440p rankings: Some faster chips at 1440p CPU benchmarks may be listed below slower chips simply because of the 1080p results.

We measured performance for the 1080p CPU gaming benchmarks with a geometric mean of Borderlands 3, Hitman 2, Far Cry 5, Project CARS 3, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider. We measured performance for the 1440p CPU gaming benchmarks with a geometric mean of Borderlands 3, Project CARS 3, Far Cry 5, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Shadow of the Tomb Raider.

As you can see, AMD's Ryzen 9 5950X and Ryzen 9 5900X take the slimmest of leads over Intel's flagship Core i9-11900K in 1080p, but the Core i9-11900K takes the lead at 11440p, meaning these chips are very closely matched. Also, check out those CPU benchmarks performance deltas between the previous-gen Ryzen processors and the 5000 series, and between the 10th-Gen Comet Lake and 11th-Gen Rocket Lake. That's impressive and comes as the byproduct of a heated competition for gaming supremacy. Enthusiasts are surely benefiting.

Most folks overlook the incredible power efficiency of the Zen 3 processors, but that equates to a faster, cooler, and quieter system that doesn't require super-expensive cooling solutions. Take note of the TDP divide in our charts - it's surprising. Check out our review for more in-depth power testing.     

Intel and AMD Integrated Graphics Gaming CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy 

Image 1 of 4

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 2 of 4

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 3 of 4

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Image 4 of 4

CPU Benchmark Hierarchy

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

iGPU Performance relative to Ryzen 7 5700G
Ryzen 7 5700G B550-E 100%100%
Ryzen 7 4750G92.9%94.1%
Ryzen 5 3400G83.5%84.1%
Intel UHD Graphics 750 32 EU (11600K, 11700K)58.3%~48.9%
Intel UHD Graphics 630 24 EU (10600K)36.0%34.4%

Here's our preliminary list of performance with integrated graphics on several of the leading APUs available. We're going to build this list out over the coming months, so stay tuned for more. For a bit of commentary and analysis of these results, head to our recent Ryzen 7 5700G review. 

Intel and AMD Single-Threaded CPU Benchmarks Performance Hierarchy

Single-Threaded CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy
Single-Threaded App ScoreArchitectureCores/ThreadsBase/Boost GHzTDP
Intel Core i9-11900K (ABT off/on)100% / 99.57%Rocket Lake8 / 163.5 / 5.3125W
AMD Ryzen 9 5950X95.31%Zen 316 / 323.4 / 4.9105W
Core i7-11700K94.29%Rocket Lake8 / 163.6 / 5.095W
AMD Ryzen 9 5900X93.69%Zen 312 / 243.7 / 4.8105W
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X92.84%Zen 38 / 163.8 / 4.7105W
Intel Core i5-11600K92.56%Rocket Lake8 / 163.9 / 4.9125W
AMD Ryzen 5 5600X89.19%Zen 36 / 123.7 / 4.665W
Ryzen 7 5700G88.92%Zen 38 / 163.8 / 4.665W
Intel Core i9-10900K86.68%Comet Lake10 / 203.7 / 5.3125W
Intel Core i9-10850K84.87%Comet Lake10 / 203.6 / 5.295W
Intel Core i9-9900KS83.13%Coffee Lake-R8 / 164.0 / 5.0127W
Intel Core i5-1140083.09%Rocket Lake6 / 122.6 / 4.465W
Intel Core i9-9900K82.63%Coffee Lake-R8 / 163.6 / 5.095W
Intel Core i7-10700K82.31%Comet Lake8 / 163.8 / 5.1125W
Intel Core i7-9700K80.36%Coffee Lake-R8 / 83.6 / 4.995W
AMD Ryzen 7 3800XT79.75%Zen 28 / 163.9 / 4.7105W
AMD Ryzen 5 3600XT79.11%Zen 26 / 123.8 / 4.595W
AMD Ryzen 9 3900XT78.86%Zen 212 / 243.8 / 4.7105W
Intel Core i5-10600K78.79%Comet Lake6 / 124.1 / 4.125W
AMD Ryzen 7 3800X78.37%Zen 28 / 163.9 / 4.5105W
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X78.18%Zen 216 / 323.5 / 4.7105W
AMD Ryzen 9 3900X77.68%Zen 212 / 243.8 / 4.6105W
Intel Core i7-10700/F~Comet Lake8 / 162.9 / 4.865W
Ryzen 7 4750G77.2%Zen 38 /163.6 / 4.465W
AMD Threadripper 3970X76.52%Zen 232 / 643.7 / 4.5280W
AMD Threadripper 3960X76.42%Zen 224 / 483.8 / 4.5280W
Intel Core i7-8700K76.32%Coffee Lake6 / 123.7 / 4.795W
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X76.29%Zen 28 / 163.6 / 4.465W
Intel Core i7-8086K76.21%Coffee Lake6 / 124.0 / 5.095W
AMD Ryzen 5 3600X75.85%Zen 26 / 123.8 / 4.495W
Intel Core i3-9350KF75.72%Coffee Lake4 / 44.0 / 4.691W
AMD Ryzen 3 3300X75.62%Zen 24 / 83.8 / 4.365W
Intel Core i5-9600K75.41%Coffee Lake-R6 / 63.7 / 4.695W
Intel Core i9-10980XE75.24%Cascade Lake-X18 / 363.0 / 4.8165W
AMD Threadripper 3990X75.10%Zen 264 / 1282.9 / 4.3280W
Intel Core i7-870074.66%Coffee Lake6 / 123.2 / 4.665W
AMD Threadripper Pro 3995WX74.20%Zen 264 / 1282.7 / 4.2280W
AMD Ryzen 5 360073.02%Zen 26 / 123.6 / 4.265W
Intel Core i9-9980XE~Skylake18 / 364.4 / 4.5165W
Intel Core i7-7700K~Kaby Lake4 / 84.2 / 4.591W
Intel Core i5-8600K71.08%Coffee Lake6 / 63.6 / 4.395W
Core i3-1010070.80%Coffee Lake4 / 83.6 / 4.365W
AMD Ryzen 7 2700X69.53%Zen+8 / 163.7 / 4.3105W
Intel Core i3-910069.20%Coffee Lake-R4 / 43.6 / 4.265W
AMD Ryzen 3 310067.74%Zen 24 / 83.8 / 3.965W
Intel Core i5-9400 / -9400F67.67%Coffee Lake6 / 62.9 / 4.165W
Intel Xeon W-3175X67.51%Skylake28 / 563.1 / 3.8225W
AMD Ryzen 5 2600X66.78%Zen+6 / 123.6 / 4.295W
Intel Core i3-8350K / -8350KF66.71%Coffee Lake4 / 44.0 / -91W
Intel Core i5-840066.03%Coffee Lake6 / 62.8 / 4.065W
AMD Ryzen 5 3500X~Zen 26 / 63.6 / 4.165W
AMD Ryzen 9 3900~Zen 212 / 243.1 / 4.365W
Intel Core i3-7100~Kaby Lake2 / 43.9 / -51W
AMD Threadripper 2950X~Zen +16 / 323.5 / 4.4180W
AMD Threadripper 2990WX~Zen+32 / 643.0 / 4.2250W
AMD Threadripper 2970WX~Zen +24 / 483.0 / 4.2250W
AMD Ryzen 5 3400G64.86%Zen +4 / 83.7 / 4.265W
AMD Ryzen 5 1600X63.62%Zen6 / 123.6 / 4.095W
AMD Ryzen 7 1800X61.99%Zen8 / 163.6 / 4.095W
Intel Core i5-7400~Kaby Lake4 / 4 3.0 / 3.565W
AMD Ryzen 3 3200G60.90%Zen +4 / 43.6 / 4.065W
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G60.79%Zen+4 / 83.6 / 3.965W
AMD Ryzen 3 1300X~Zen4 / 43.5 / 3.765W
AMD Ryzen 5 1600AF~Zen6 / 123.2 / 3.665W
Intel Pentium G560060.13%Coffee Lake2 / 43.9 / -54W
Intel Core i3-810060.12%Coffee Lake4 / 43.6 / -65W
AMD Ryzen 3 2200G57.09%Zen4 / 43.5 / 3.765W
Intel Pentium G540056.79%Coffee Lake2 / 43.7 / -54W
AMD Athlon 3000G~Zen+2 / 43.5 / -35W
AMD Athlon 220GE~Zen2 / 43.4 / -35W
Intel Pentium G4560~Kaby Lake2 / 43.5 / -54W
AMD Athlon 200GE~Zen2 / 43.2 / -35W
AMD A10-9700~Bristol Ridge4 / 43.5 / 3.865W
Zhaoxin KaiXian KX-U6780A~LuJiaZui 8 / 82.7 / -70W

We calculate the above single-threaded CPU benchmarks rankings based on a geometric mean of Cinebench, POV-Ray, and LAME. The latter consists of two tests: One short duration test and one extended-duration test to measure performance once Intel's boost duration limits have been exceeded.

Single-threaded performance is often tied directly to the responsiveness and snappiness of your PC in any number of daily applications, like loading an operating system or surfing the web. This metric largely depends upon a mixture of instruction per cycle (IPC) throughput (the number of operations the chip can execute in one clock cycle) and frequency, which is the speed at which the transistors switch between on and off states.

However, a whole host of other considerations, such as cache, architecture, and interconnects (like rings, meshes, and infinity fabric) impact this measure of per-core performance, so these results do not align perfectly based upon clock frequency. Instead, performance varies with each application and how well it is tuned for the respective architectures.

With all that said, the CPU benchmarks delta between Intel's flagship Core i9-10900K and the Ryzen 5000 processors was incredible - at worst, Ryzen 5000 was 10% faster in single-threaded performance. The paradigm has changed, though, as the Core i9-11900K takes a convincing 5% lead over AMD's Ryzen 9 5950X to take the lead in our single-threaded hierarchy. Rocket Lake's Cypress Cove architecture has proven to be beastly in single-threaded work, but we don't see those same gains translate over to gaming performance.

Intel and AMD Multi-Threaded CPU Benchmarks Performance

Multi-Threaded CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy
Multi-Threaded App ScoreArchitectureCores/ThreadsBase/Boost GHzTDP
AMD Threadripper 3990X100.0%Zen 264 / 1282.9 / 4.3280W
AMD Threadripper Pro 3995WX97.59%Zen 264 / 1282.7 / 4.2280W
AMD Threadripper 3970X75.74%Zen 232 / 643.7 / 4.5280W
AMD Threadripper 3960X64.76%Zen 224 / 483.8 / 4.5280W
Intel Xeon W-3175X59.95%Skylake28 / 563.1 / 4.3225W
AMD Ryzen 9 5950X53.58%Zen 316 / 323.4 / 4.9105W
AMD Ryzen 9 3950X47.32%Zen 216 / 323.5 / 4.7105W
AMD Ryzen 9 5900X45.89%Zen 312 / 243.7 / 4.8105W
Intel Core i9-10980XE43.06%Cascade Lake-X18 / 363.0 / 4.8165W
Intel Core i9-9980XE~Skylake18 / 364.4 / 4.5165W
AMD Threadripper 2990WX~Zen+32 / 643.0 / 4.2250W
AMD Ryzen 9 3900X38.69%Zen 212 / 243.8 / 4.6105W
AMD Ryzen 9 3900XT38.66%Zen 212 / 243.8 / 4.7105W
Intel Core i9-11900K (ABT off/on)36.01% / 37.07%Rocket Lake8 / 163.5 / 5.3125W
AMD Threadripper 2970WX~Zen +24 / 483.0 / 4.2250W
Core i7-11700K34.26%Rocket Lake8 / 163.6 / 5.0125W
Intel Core i9-10900K33.79%Comet Lake10 / 203.7 / 5.3125W
AMD Ryzen 7 5800X33.48%Zen 38 / 163.8 / 4.7105W
Intel Core i9-10850K33.38%Comet Lake10 / 203.6 / 5.295W
AMD Threadripper 2950X~Zen +16 / 323.5 / 4.4180W
AMD Ryzen 9 3900~Zen 212 / 243.1 / 4.365W
Ryzen 7 5700G29.73%Zen 38 / 163.8 / 4.665W
Intel Core i9-9900KS29.11%Coffee Lake-R8 / 164.0 / 5.0127W
AMD Ryzen 7 3800XT28.49%Zen 28 / 163.9 / 4.7105W
AMD Ryzen 7 3800X28.25%Zen 28 / 163.9 / 4.5105W
Intel Core i7-10700K28.17%Comet Lake8 / 163.8 / 5.1125W
Intel Core i9-9900K27.78%Coffee Lake-R8 / 163.6 / 5.095W
AMD Ryzen 7 3700X27.47%Zen 28 / 163.6 / 4.465W
Intel Core i5-11600K26.79%Rocket Lake8 / 163.9 / 4.9125W
AMD Ryzen 5 5600X26.15%Zen 36 / 123.7 / 4.665W
AMD Ryzen 7 4750G26.06%Zen 38 / 163.6 / 4.465W
Intel Core i7-10700/F~Comet Lake8 / 162.9 / 4.865W
Intel Core i5-1140024.46%Rocket Lake6 / 122.6 / 4.465W
Intel Core i7-9700K22.81%Coffee Lake-R8 / 83.6 / 4.995W
AMD Ryzen 5 3600XT22.28%Zen 26 / 123.8 / 4.595W
AMD Ryzen 5 3600X21.76%Zen 26 / 123.8 / 4.495W
AMD Ryzen 5 360021.41%Zen 26 / 123.6 / 4.265W
AMD Ryzen 7 2700X21.59%Zen+8 / 163.7 / 4.3105W
Intel Core i5-10600K20.83%Comet Lake6 / 124.1 / 4.8125W
Intel Core i7-8700K20.23%Coffee Lake6 / 123.7 / 4.795W
Core i7-870020.04%Coffee Lake6 / 123.2 / 4.665W
Core i7-8086K19.30%Coffee Lake6 / 124.0 / 5.095W
AMD Ryzen 7 1800X19.17%Zen8 / 163.6 / 4.095W
AMD Ryzen 5 2600X16.96%Zen+6 / 123.6 / 4.295W
Intel Core i5-9600K16.60%Coffee Lake-R6 / 63.7 / 4.695W
AMD Ryzen 5 3500X~Zen 26 / 63.6 / 4.165W
Intel Core i7-7700K~Kaby Lake4 / 84.2 / 4.591W
Intel Core i5-8600K15.93%Coffee Lake6 / 63.6 / 4.395W
AMD Ryzen 3 3300X15.55%Zen 24 / 83.8 / 4.365W
AMD Ryzen 5 1600AF~Zen6 / 123.2 / 3.665W
AMD Ryzen 5 1600X15.16%Zen6 / 123.6 / 4.095W
Intel Core i5-9400 / -9400F15.04%Coffee Lake6 / 62.9 / 4.165W
Intel Core i5-840014.76%Coffee Lake6 / 62.8 / 4.065W
AMD Ryzen 3 310014.17%Zen 24 / 83.8 / 3.965W
Core i3-1010013.37%Rocket Lake4 / 83.6 / 4.365W
Intel Core i3-9350KF11.76%Coffee Lake4 / 44.0/4.691W
AMD Ryzen 5 3400G11.31%Zen +4 / 83.7 / 4.265W
Intel Core i3-8350K10.74%Coffee Lake4 / 44.0 / -91W
Intel Core i3-910010.70%Coffee Lake-R4 / 43.6 / 4.265W
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G10.56%Zen+4 / 83.6 / 3.965W
Intel Core i3-81009.61%Coffee Lake4 / 43.6 / -65W
Intel Core i5-7400~Kaby Lake4 / 4 3.0 / 3.565W
AMD Ryzen 3 3200G8.66%Zen +4 / 43.6 / 4.065W
AMD Ryzen 3 1300X~Zen4 / 43.5 / 3.765W
Intel Core i3-7100~Kaby Lake2 / 43.9 / -51W
AMD Ryzen 3 2200G7.99%Zen4 / 43.5 / 3.765W
Intel Pentium G56005.43%Coffee Lake2 / 43.9 / -54W
AMD Athlon 3000G~Zen+2 / 43.5 / -35W
AMD Athlon 220GE~Zen2 / 43.4 / -35W
Intel Pentium G54005.13%Coffee Lake2 / 43.7 / -54W
AMD Athlon 200GE~Zen2 / 43.2 / -35W
Intel Pentium G4560~Kaby Lake2 / 43.5 / -54W
AMD A10-9700~Bristol Ridge4 / 43.5 / 3.865W
Zhaoxin KaiXian KX-U6780A~LuJiaZui 8 / 82.7 / -70W

The multi-threaded workload column is based on CPU benchmarks performance in Cinebench, POV-ray, vray, Blender (four tests - Koro, Barcellona, Classroom, bmw27), y-cruncher, and Handbrake x264 and x265 workloads. These CPU benchmarks represent performance in productivity-focused applications that tend to require more compute horsepower.

Like we see with single-threaded performance metrics, multi-threaded performance, which is a measure of a chip's performance in applications that utilize multiple software threads, varies based upon a whole host of architectural factors. It also depends heavily upon how well the software scales with additional compute cores. As such, these results do not align perfectly based upon core/thread count, though it does serve as a decent litmus of multi-threaded performance. 

Be aware that architectures, caches, and interconnects profoundly impact these results, as all of these factors impact how well performance scales with additional threads. Performance rarely scales perfectly with the addition of more cores/threads, so the scaling factor of each processor architecture weighs in heavily on the value proposition of going with a higher core count processor.

It's noteworthy that both Ryzen 5000 chips beat out Intel's 18-core 32-thread Core i9-10980XE, and the Ryzen 9 5900X only comes with 12 cores. Again, pay attention to TDP - the Ryzen chips have a 105W ranking while Intel is specced at 165W. 

Intel's Rocket Lake chips weigh in with a slight generational gain with the Core i9-11900K over the previous-gen Core i9-10900K, but we're looking at a ~3% gain. That is impressive given that the 11900K comes with two fewer cores, but it doesn't do much to change the CPU benchmark pecking order relative to AMD's Ryzen 5000 chips. The Core i5-11600K is a solid chip, though: It boosts multi-threaded performance by 6% over its predecessor, the Core i5-10600K.

CPU Benchmarks Test System and Configuration

CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy Test Setup
AMD Socket AM4 (400- 500-Series)AMD Ryzen 2000- 3000- 5000- series processors
MSI MEG X570 Godlike
2x 8GB Trident Z Royal DDR4-3600
Intel LGA 1151 (Z490)Intel Comet Lake processors
MSI Z370 Gaming Pro Carbon AC
2x 8GB Trident Z Royal DDR4-3600
AMD Socket AM4 (300-Series)Ryzen 1000-series processors
MSI X370 Xpower Gaming Titanium
2x 8GB G.Skill FlareX DDR4-3200 @ DDR4-2667
Intel LGA 1151 (Z270)Intel Coffee Lake, Kaby Lake processors
MSI Z270 Gaming M7
2x 8GB Trident Z Royal DDR4-3600
Intel LGA 2066Intel Skylake processors
MSI X299 Gaming Pro Carbon AC
2x 8GB Trident Z Royal DDR4-3600
AllGigabyte GeForce RTX 3090 Eagle
2TB Intel DC4510 SSD
EVGA Supernova 1600 T2, 1600W
Windows 10 Pro version 2004 (build 19041.450)
CoolingCorsair H115i

Legacy Desktop CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy

Recognizing that a lot of older platforms are going to be paired with graphics subsystems multiple generations old, we wanted to define the top of our range to encourage balance between host processing and complementary GPUs. At this point, anyone with a Sandy Bridge-based Core i7 would realize a gain from stepping up to Coffee Lake or Kaby Lake, for example. And putting AMD's top FX CPUs next to a handful of Core i7s and those older Core i5s represents an upgrade to their status.

Currently, our hierarchy consists of 13 total tiers. The bottom half of the chart is largely outdated; you'll notice those CPUs dragging down performance in the latest games, regardless of the graphics card installed in your PC. If you own a CPU in that range, an upgrade could really take your experience to another level.

Really, it's the top five tiers or so that remain viable. And in that top half of the chart, an upgrade is typically worthwhile if it's a least a couple of tiers higher. Otherwise, there's just not enough improvement to warrant the expense of a fresh CPU, motherboard and RAM (not to mention the graphics card and storage solution you'd be considering as well). 

Legacy Desktop CPU Benchmarks Hierarchy
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Core i7-8700K
Intel Core i9-7900X
Intel Core i9-7960X
Intel Core i9-7980XE
Intel Core i7-8700K
Intel Core i7-7740X
Intel Core i7-7700K
Intel Core i7-7820XAMD Ryzen Threadripper 1950X
Intel Core i7-7700AMD Ryzen Threadripper 1920X
Intel Core i5-8400AMD Ryzen 7 1800X
Intel Core i7-7800XAMD Ryzen Threadripper 1900X
Intel Core i7-7700TAMD Ryzen 7 1700X
Intel Core i7-6950XAMD Ryzen 7 1700
Intel Core i7-6900KAMD Ryzen 5 1600X
Intel Core i7-6850KAMD Ryzen 5 1600
Intel Core i7-6800KAMD Ryzen 5 1500X
Intel Core i7-6700KAMD Ryzen 5 1400
Intel Core i7 6700AMD Ryzen 3 1300X
Intel Core i7-5960XRyzen 5 2400G
Intel Core i7-5930K
Intel Core i7-5820K
Intel Core i7-5775C
Intel i7-4960X
Intel Core i7-4930K
Intel Core i7-4820K
Intel Core i7-4790K
Intel Core i7-4770K
Intel Core i7-4790
Intel Core i7-4771
Intel Core i7-4770
Intel Core i7-3970X
Intel Core i7-3960X
Intel Core i7-3930K
Intel Core i7-3820
Intel Core i7-3770K
Intel Core i7-3770
Intel Core i5-7640X
Intel Core i5-7600K
Intel Core i5-7600
Intel Core i5-7500
Intel Core i5-7400
Intel Core i5 6600K
Intel Core i5-6600
Intel Core i5-6500
Intel Core i5 6402P
Intel Core i5-6400
Intel Core i5-5675C
Intel Core i5-4690K
Intel Core i5-4670K
Intel Core i5-4590
Intel Core i5-4670
Intel Core i5-4570
Intel BX80646I54460
Intel Core i5-4440
Intel Core i5-4430
Intel Core i5-3570K
Intel Core i5-3570
Intel Core i5-3550
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Core i7-990X Extreme
Intel Core i7-980X Extreme
Intel Core i7-975 Extreme
Intel Core i7-2600K
Intel Core i7-2600
Intel Core i7-965
Intel Core i5-3470
Intel Core i5-3450PIntel Core i7-7700
Intel Core i5-3450AMD FX-9370
Intel Core i5-3350PAMD FX-8370
Intel Core i5-3330AMD FX-8350 w/Wraith
Intel Core i5-2550KAMD FX-8320
Intel Core i5-2500KAMD FX-8300
Intel Core i5-2500AMD FX-8150
Intel Core i5-2450P
Intel Core i5-2400
Intel Core i5-2380P
Intel Core i5-2320
Intel Core i5-2310
Intel Core i5-2300
Intel Core i3-7350K
Intel Core i3-7320
Intel Core i3-7300
Intel Core i3-7100
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Core i7-980
Intel Core i7-970
Intel Core i7-960
Intel Core i7-875K
Intel Core i7-870
Intel Core i3 6320
Intel Core i3 6300
Intel Core i3-6100AMD FX-6350
Intel Core i3 6100TAMD FX-4350
Intel Core i3-6098PAMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition
Intel Core i3-4360AMD Phenom II X6 1090T Black Edition
Intel Core i3-4350AMD Phenom II X4 Black Edition 980
Intel Core i3-4340AMD Phenom II X4 Black Edition 975
Intel Core i3-4170
Intel Core i3-4160
Intel Core i3-4150
Intel Core i3-4130
Intel Core i3-3250
Intel Core i3-3245
Intel Core i3-3240
Intel Core i3-3225
Intel Core i3-3220
Intel Core i3-3210
Intel Core i3-2130
Intel Core i3-2025
Intel Core i3-2120
Intel Core i3-2105
Intel Core i3-2100
Intel Pentium G4620
Intel Pentium G4600
Intel Pentium G4560
Intel Pentium G4500
Intel Pentium G4400
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
AMD FX-8370E
AMD FX-8320
AMD FX-8120
AMD FX-6300
AMD FX-6200
AMD FX-4300
AMD FX-4170
AMD Phenom II X6 1075T
Intel Core i7-950AMD Phenom II X4 970 Black Edition
Intel Core i7-940AMD Phenom II X4 965
Intel Core i7-930AMD Phenom II X4 955
Intel Core i7-920AMD A10-7890K APU
Intel Core i7-860Intel A10-7870K
Intel Core i5-3220TAMD A10-7860K
Intel Core i5-2405SAMD A10-7850K
Intel Core i5-2400SAMD A10-7800
Intel Core i5-760AMD A10-7700K
Intel Core i5-750AMD A10-6800K
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9775AMD A10-6790K
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9770AMD A10-6700
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX9650AMD A10-5800K
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650AMD A10-5700
Intel A8-7650K
AMD A8-7600
AMD A8-6600K
AMD A8-5600K
AMD A8-3870K
AMD A8-3870
AMD A8-3850
AMD Athlon X4 880K
Intel Athlon X4 870K)
Intel A10-7870K
AMD Athlon X4 750K
AMD Athlon X4 740
AMD Athlon X4 651K
AMD Athlon X4 645
AMD Athlon X4 641
AMD Athlon X4 640
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
AMD FX-6100
AMD FX-4130
AMD FX-4100
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6850AMD Phenom II X6 1055T
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6800AMD Phenom II X6 1045T
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9550AMD Phenom II X4 945
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9450AMD Phenom II X4 940
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9400AMD Phenom II X4 920
Intel Core i5-680AMD Phenom II X3 740
Intel Core i5-670AMD Phenom II X3 720 Black Edition
Intel Core i5-661AMD A8-6500
Intel Core i5-660AMD A8-5500
Intel Core i5-655KAMD A6
Intel Core i5-650AMD A6
Intel Core i3-2120TAMD A6-3670K
Intel Core i3-2100TAMD A6-3650
AMD Athlon II X4 635
AMD Athlon II X4 630
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Core 2 Extreme QX6700
Intel Core 2 Quad Q9300
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8400
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8300
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6700
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Intel Core 2 Duo E8600
Intel Core 2 Duo E8500AMD Phenom II X4 910
Intel Core 2 Duo E8400AMD Phenom II X4 910e
Intel Core 2 Duo E7600AMD Phenom II X4 810
Intel Core i3-550AMD Athlon II X4 631
Intel Core i3-540AMD Athlon II X4 620
Intel Core i3-530AMD Athlon II X3 460
Intel Pentium G3470
Intel Pentium G3460
Intel Pentium G3450
Intel Pentium G3440
Intel Pentium G3430
Intel Pentium G3420
Intel Pentium G3260
Intel Pentium G3258
Intel Pentium G3250
Intel Pentium G3220
Intel Pentium G2130
Intel Pentium G2120
Intel Pentium G2020
Intel Pentium G2010
Intel Pentium G870
Intel Pentium G860
Intel Pentium G850
Intel Pentium G840
Intel Pentium G645
Intel Pentium G640
Intel Pentium G630
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Core 2 Extreme X6800
Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200
Intel Core 2 Duo E8300AMD Phenom II X4 905e
Intel Core 2 Duo E8200AMD Phenom II X4 805
Intel Core 2 Duo E8190AMD Phenom II X3 710
Intel Core 2 Duo E7500AMD Phenom II X3 705e
Intel Core 2 Duo E7400AMD Phenom II X2 565 Black Edition
Intel Core 2 Duo E6850AMD Phenom II X2 560 Black Edition
Intel Core 2 Duo E6750AMD Phenom II X2 555 Black Edition
Intel Pentium G620AMD Phenom II X2 550 Black Edition
Intel Celeron G1630AMD Phenom II X2 545
Intel Celeron G1620AMD Phenom X4 9950
Intel Celeron G1610AMD Athlon II X3 455
Intel Celeron G555AMD Athlon II X3 450
Intel Celeron G550AMD Athlon II X3 445
Intel Celeron G540AMD Athlon II X3 440
Intel Celeron G530AMD Athlon II X3 435
Intel Celeron G3950AMD Athlon II X3 425
Intel Celeron G3930
Intel Celeron G3930
Intel Celeron G3900
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
AMD Phenom X4 9850
AMD Phenom X4 9750
AMD Phenom X4 9650
Intel Core 2 Duo E7300AMD Phenom X4 9600
Intel Core 2 Duo E7200AMD Phenom X3 8850
Intel Core 2 Duo E6700AMD Phenom X3 8750
Intel Core 2 Duo E6550AMD Athlon II X2 370K
Intel Core 2 Duo E6540AMD Athlon II X2 265
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E6700AMD Athlon II X2 260
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E6600AMD Athlon II X2 255
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E650AMD A6-5500K
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E6300AMD A6
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E5800AMD A4-7300
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E5700AMD A4-6400K
Intel Pentium G9650AMD A4-6300
AMD A4-5400K
AMD A4-5300
AMD A4-4400
AMD A4-4000
AMD A4-3400
AMD A4-3300
AMD Sempron 2650
AMD Athlon 64 X2 6400+
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
AMD Phenom X4 9550
AMD Phenom X4 9500
AMD Phenom X4 9450e
Intel Core 2 Duo E6600AMD Phenom X4 9350e
Intel Core 2 Duo E6420AMD Phenom X3 8650
Intel Core 2 Duo E4700AMD Phenom X3 8600
Intel Core 2 Duo E4600AMD Phenom X3 8550
Intel Core 2 Duo E4500AMD Phenom X3 8450e
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E5400AMD Phenom X3 8450
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E5300AMD Phenom X3 8400
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E5200AMD Phenom X3 8250e
Intel Pentium Dual-Core G620TAMD Athlon II X2 250
AMD Athlon II X2 245
AMD Athlon II X2 240
AMD Athlon X2 7850
AMD Athlon X2 7750
AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600+
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
AMD Phenom X4 9150e
AMD Phenom X4 9100e
Intel Core 2 Duo E6400AMD Athlon X2 7550
Intel Core 2 Duo E6320AMD Athlon X2 7450
Intel Core 2 Duo E4400AMD Athlon X2 5050e
Intel Core 2 Duo E4300AMD Athlon X2 4850e/b
Intel Celeron E3300AMD Athlon 64 X2 5400+
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5200+
AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+
AMD Athlon 64 X2 4800+
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Core 2 Duo E6300AMD Athlon X2 6550
Intel Core 2 Duo E5500AMD Athlon X2 6500
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2220AMD Athlon X2 4450e/b
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2200AMD Athlon X2 4600+
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2210AMD Athlon X2 4400+
Intel Celeron E3200AMD Athlon X2 4200+
AMD Athlon X2 BE-2400
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2180AMD Athlon 64 X2 4000+
Intel Celeron 1600AMD Athlon 64 X2 3800+
Intel Celeron G440AMD Athlon X2 4050e
AMD Athlon X2 2300 Black Edition
Intel CPUsAMD CPUs and APUs
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2160
Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2140
Intel Celeron E1500
Intel Celeron E1400
Intel Celeron E1200

Finding Deals on the Best CPUs

Whether you're shopping for a processor that's on our list of best CPUS or one that didn't quite make the cut, you may find savings by checking our list of coupon codes, especially our lists of Newegg promo codes and Micro Center coupons.

MORE: Best Gaming CPUs

MORE: Best Cheap CPUs

MORE: Best Desktop CPUs

MORE: GPU Benchmarks

Paul Alcorn

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

  • abryant
    Archived comments are found here:
  • King_V
    Will the G5xxx Pentiums, as well as the Ryzen-based Athlons, be added?

    Come to think about it, maybe the AM4 versions of the A10 and A12?

    Low end stuff, true, but still interesting I think to see where the new bottom-end CPUs fit relative to some of the older things that were decent performers in their day.
  • Yarberger1
    I have an i5-3570. I have previously been told that an upgrade to (for example) an i7-8700K would see a significant improvement and would be well worth the investment. This article seems to say the exact opposite.

    I presently have a 1920x1080 monitor and GTX960 GPU. My system is used for general office applications, surfing and limited gaming (WoW, with an intention to switch to Elite: Dangerous shortly).
  • King_V
    My son, at his mother's house, still uses an i5-2320 with a GTX 660Ti. Handles his needs just fine. I'd say with your usage, what you have is more than sufficient.
  • Yarberger1
    Would this remain the case if I were to upgrade to a 2560x1440 monitor? (Thanks for the reply)
  • King_V
    That I couldn't say - as I'm not familiar with those particular games or how demanding they are.

    Might be more appropriate to start a separate thread though, for that question. That way you're more likely to get people who can address that question than who would see it buried in the midst of this thread about the hierarchy charts.
  • urbanman2004
    Would it be advisable to upgrade the GPU on a system running a i7-980X (w/ 16GB RAM) from a GTX 680 (2GB) to a GTX 1070 (8GB)?
  • King_V
    That would really be more dependent on your monitor's resolution and refresh rate. Could be the right choice, could be a bit of overkill, depending on the monitor.
  • nufelevas
    Here are the prices updates to February 2019.

    The size of the bubbles indicate application performance.

    The labels in red belong to best buys (lower price or higher performance)

    Not all prices and processors on the article are on sale anymore, so I excluded some CPUs.

    Prices source:
    Intel Core i7-8700K $ 400
    Intel Core i7-8700 $ 350
    Intel Core i9-7960X $ 930
    Intel Core i5-8600K $ 260
    AMD Ryzen 5 2600X $ 216
    AMD Ryzen 7 2700X $ 310
    Intel Core i9-7980XE $ 1.900
    Intel Core i9-7900X $ 1.013
    Intel Core i7-7700K $ 419
    Intel Core i5-8400 $ 200
    AMD Threadripper 2950X $ 930
    Intel Core i7-7820X $ 670
    Intel Core i3-8350K $ 200
    AMD Ryzen 7 2700 $ 260
    AMD Threadripper 1900X $ 310
    Intel Core i7-7700 $ 340
    Threadripper 2990WX $ 1.730
    AMD Ryzen 5 2600 $ 165
    Intel Core i7-7800X $ 400
    Intel Core i5-7600K $ 280
    AMD Threadripper 1950X $ 590
    AMD Threadripper 1920X $ 450
    AMD Ryzen 7 1800X $ 320
    Intel Core i5-7600 $ 270
    AMD Ryzen 7 1700X $ 190
    AMD Ryzen 5 1600X $ 160
    Intel Core i3-8100 $ 119
    Intel Core i5-7500 $ 242
    Intel Core i5-7400 $ 220
    AMD Ryzen 7 1700 $ 170
    AMD Ryzen 5 1500X $ 160
    Intel Core i3-7350K $ 200
    AMD Ryzen 5 2400G $ 150
    Intel Core i3-7300 $ 241
    Intel Core i3-7100 $ 170
    AMD Ryzen 5 1400 $ 135
    AMD Ryzen 3 1300X $ 160
    AMD Ryzen 3 2200G $ 95
    Intel Pentium G4560 $ 110
    AMD Ryzen 3 1200 $ 95
  • drawingpin
    The amazon prices showing for the likes of the Ryzen 2600X are inflated as they're displaying the price for a combo deal with a Corsair AIO. Not very helpful as price is a huge factor and the Ryzen CPUs already come with their own cooler.