It’s time to compare the Ryzen 7 5700X with Core i7-12700F, two relatively affordable and powerful 8-core processors. We now know that the Intel processor costs a little more and we are sure that some will argue that Core i5-12600KF maybe it’s a “more fair” match, but it’s been heavily requested, so let’s see what’s between the two at the moment.

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At the time of writing, the Intel 12700F could be purchased for $310whereas the 5700X is slightly cheaper in $285, or about 9% surcharge for an Intel processor. In other regions such as Australia, the 5700X usually sells for $425 and the 12700F for $480 (AUD), which is a bit more expensive for the Intel part, but your mileage will no doubt be different.

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It’s probably worth noting that in Australia the 5700X is about 10% more expensive than 12600KF and just over 20% more expensive than the base 12600 model, so whichever way you go, it won’t be completely apples to apples in terms of pricing. But most of all, we’re interested to see how the 5700X and 12700F perform in games, so let’s get on with it.

For this we have a 23 game test covering 1080p and 1440p resolutions using both Radeon RH 6950 HT as well as Radeon RH 6600 HT with SAM enabled.

The motherboard used to test the Ryzen 7 5700X is an old MSI B350 Tomahawk with the latest BIOS based on AGESA 1.2.0.7 microcode which includes Resizable BAR along with support for Ryzen 5000 processors. is within a few percent of what we see with the latest and greatest X570 boardswhich makes the upgrades very practical.

We’re stuck with B350 Tomahawk for several reasons. First, we already had the data, and we know it’s comparable to what we’d get with the newer and more expensive X570 boards. It also paints a pretty new picture for AMD’s processor, given that it not only runs on a 5-year-old motherboard, but also competes very well in doing so.

Meanwhile, for the 12700F, we need a brand new motherboard, and we use the motherboard for testing. $260 MSI Z690 Tomahawk DDR4, which we will talk about in more detail at the end of this article. For both systems, we opted for 32GB of dual-rank, dual-channel DDR4-3200 CL14 memory.

With those details out of the way, let’s take a look at some of the games we tested, and then take a look at the average of 23 games.

Landmarks

Beginning with Fortnite, we found the 12700F and 5700X to be very similar to each other, and both offer top-notch features. The Ryzen processor was 4% faster, which is negligible, so the difference is close enough to call it a draw.

Recently while testing Ryzen 7 5800X3D we found the cache-heavy CPU to be a beast in ACC, delivering the best performance we’ve ever seen in this game.

However, stock Zen 3 processors aren’t that impressive, and we can see here that the 12700F is 40% faster than the 5700X when looking at the 1% lows.

The average frame rate headroom is about half that figure. However, even using the 6600 XT at 1440p 1% lows is improved by 14% with the Intel processor, which is a strong result for the 12700F.

Cyberpunk 2077 works best with the 12700F when testing more CPU bound scenarios such as 1080p with the Radeon RX 6950 XT where the Intel part was 37% faster. That headroom was greatly reduced at 1440p, although average frame rates were mostly the same, although the 12700F was 13% faster when looking at 1% lows. Then when using the 6600 XT, performance was the same as we weren’t heavily GPU bound using any of those processors.

CS:GO is extremely CPU-limited when using a 6600 XT or 6950 XT, but like an old game, it’s not CPU-limited anymore in the sense of not fully utilizing modern CPUs, so it’s a software bottleneck more than anything else . .

Here the 12700F was 22% faster thanks to better single-core performance, but both processors allowed for a 1% drop to over 170fps with averages well over 300fps.

Rainbow Six Extraction is an example of a game that can be played at hundreds of frames per second on modern CPUs, but is completely GPU-limited using the second highest quality preset.

Both the 5700X and 12700F consistently delivered over 200fps in our test, resulting in an average frame rate of over 300fps. It’s fast enough.

Then we have F1 2021 and it starts getting CPU-bound with the 5700X as soon as we crank it up to 300fps. Again, this is more than most gamers need for this game. So while the 12700F was 16% faster than the 6950 XT at 1080p, it doesn’t really matter as the 5700X consistently keeps frame rates above 200fps.

Forza Horizon 5 is a great and popular racing game that doesn’t use much CPU. Both processors can hit over 200fps when the GPU is capable of it. The 12700F took a 5% lead over the 6950 XT at 1080p, but it’s really a minor difference that no gamer will notice.

Hitman 3 is a CPU intensive game that makes very good use of those CPUs. Here the 12700F has a clear performance advantage, improving low frequencies by 1% by up to 22%. Interestingly, even with the much slower 6600 XT, the 12700F was 17% faster at 1080p, suggesting there is some sort of Ryzen CPU or latency issue in this title.

Riftbreaker is another game that performs better with Intel’s Alder Lake architecture, boosting 1% lows from the 6950 XT at 1080p by as much as 41% while also increasing average frame rates by 27%.

That’s a pretty significant lead and it’s not until we get to the 6600 XT that the headroom narrows, but even at 1080p the 12700F was still 12% faster.

The last game we look at in individual results is Watch Dogs Legion, one of the most CPU and GPU intensive games we’ve tested. The 12700F was 16-17% faster than the 5700X when tested with the 6950 XT at 1080p, and the fields were the same even at 1440p. In fact, even with the 6600 XT the 12700F was 13% faster, and it wasn’t until we bumped up the resolution to 1440p that the gap narrowed to a negligible margin.

23 games on average

In all games tested, the Core i7-12700F was on average 7% faster when considering average FPS than the 5700X, while 1% lows were improved by 10% when using the 6950 XT at 1080p. This is not a significant increase, but still a profitable combination for Intel. At 1440p, those numbers approach 9% for the 1% low and just 4% for the average frame rate.

Meanwhile, those of you using more mid-range GPUs will see an even smaller difference. For example, with the 6600 XT, the 12700F was only 5% faster on average for 1% low frequencies and 2% faster for mid frame rates at 1080p. Then we see no real difference in performance at 1440p despite an average frame rate of just over 100fps.

Looking at 1080p margins for each game using the 6950 XT – the most CPU capped test results we have for this comparison – the 5700X was on average 6% slower, and while we see at least one game where he was taller. 20% faster, there are four examples where the speed was more than 20% slower.

Only 9 of the 23 games tested had a difference of 5% or less in either direction, meaning there were only 3 instances where the 5700X won by a significant margin and 10 where it lost.

Using a less extreme GPU like the 6600 XT significantly reduced the performance difference seen between the two CPUs and now even at 1080p the 5700X was only 2% slower on average.

Death Stranding is the only game to significantly outperform Ryzen, while Watch Dogs Legion and ACC were the only games where it lost by a significant margin.

The best 8-core processor for gamers

So which processor is better? It depends on a few things… The obvious scenario to get out of the way is the upgrade path for those who already have a great AM4 motherboard. If you fall into this case, then the most cost-effective option would be to use the 5700X.

Now, for new system builders, the choice is much less obvious, so let’s break down the costs. The 5700X is currently priced at $285 and a decent B550 board like the MSI B550M Pro-VDH WiFi costs an extra $100, so it’s a $385 combo.

Cost 12700F $310 and the best budget B660 boards at the moment are MSI Pro B660M-A and B660M Bazooka and both are $140 so the combination is $450. As for the motherboard and CPU, you get a 15-20% markup when you go to Intel, although if you’re building a $1500 PC the difference is only ~5%. Or, if you’re building something closer to $1,000 or more, there’s less than a 10% difference in the price of the entire system.

In terms of gaming performance, which we just covered, 12700F generally faster, which, in our opinion, justifies the price increase. If you don’t plan on upgrading in the near future, then we think the Core i7-12700F is the best long-term investment as it’s generally faster now, and better single-core performance will improve it in future games.

If you change your mind in the future, you will have the option to upgrade to a 13th Gen Raptor Lake processor. We don’t yet know if there will be any decent options for the 12700F owner, so it’s more likely to be possible right now.

We’re less attracted to the Ryzen 7 5700X for those who haven’t invested in the AM4 yet. It is certainly a great gaming processor, but there are no real advantages that would allow me to choose it over the 12700F. Apart from gaming, the 12700F also much more powerful processor as these four E-cores work wonders for high performance workloads.

AMD fans may point to power consumption and operating temperatures, but the truth is that the 12700F cools just as easily as the 5700X, and gaming power consumption is nearly identical. Then, when running workloads with more cores, the power consumption of the 12700F and 5700X is not much different, and the performance per watt ends up in favor of the Core i7.

Ultimately, you’ll be completely happy with either option, as both are excellent gaming processors that handle the latest and greatest games with ease and will continue to deliver top performance for years to come.

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