AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D review: an unexpected triumph that we should have gotten sooner

The best gaming processor for the AM4 board, if you can find it

An AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D
Best in Class
(Image: © Future / John Loeffler)

TechRadar Verdict

The AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D gives you 5800X3D gaming performance at a fraction of the cost. This explains why AMD didn't release it in 2022, since it largely destroys any reason for gamers to buy its more expensive 5800X3D sibling unless they also want better non-gaming performance.


  • +

    Outstanding gaming performance

  • +

    Low power consumption and price

  • +

    Compatible with AM4/DDR4


  • -

    Only available from Microcenter in the US

  • -

    Non-gaming performance lags the 5800X3D

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AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D: Two-minute review

So this here AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D review isn't going to be a normal processor review, since this is not a normal chip. 

It's a limited edition chip exclusively sold through Micro Center in the US, so a lot of folks won't even be able to get their hands on it. That's a hell of a shame, because this chip really makes the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D pretty irrelevant for gamers, and it's easily the best cheap processor for gaming you're going to find — if you can find it.

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Header Cell - Column 0 Ryzen 5 5600X3D
Price$229 (about £195/AU$330)
Performance Cores 6
Base Clock (GHz)3.30
Boost Clock (GHz)4.4
Cache (MB)99
TDP (W)105

According to Micro Center, AMD agreed to let Micro Center sell its stock of the unreleased Ryzen 5 5600X3D exclusively through its stores for $229 (about £195/AU$330) as long as stock remains, although there's no sense yet of how much stock there is.

Being a Ryzen 5, the chip comes loaded with six Zen 3 cores (with 12 threads), but those cores are a somewhat slower 3.3GHz base and 4.4GHz boost clock (as opposed to the 3.7GHz base and 4.6GHz boost clock of the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X). It has the same TDP as the Ryzen 7 5800X3D (105W), which is also a lot higher than the base Ryzen 5 5600X (65W).

The 3D V-Cache on this chip also gives it a substantially larger cache pool (3MB+96MB L2+L3 cache) than the non-3D version. In total, the 5600X3D has just 1MB less than the 100MB combined cache of the Ryzen 7 5800X3D.

And boy howdy, does it show.

An AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)

In terms of performance, the Ryzen 5 5600X3D runs about 16% slower than the Ryzen 7 5800X3D in terms of synthetic benchmarks, which makes sense, since it has slower clocks and two fewer cores. Its single core score is more or less the same though though.

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Synthetic benchmarks
Header Cell - Column 0 Ryzen 5 5600X3DRyzen 7 5800X3DPerformance Difference
Geekbench Single210321010.10%
Geekbench Multi90299903-8.83%
CineBench R23 Single14061428-1.54%
CineBench R23 Multi1113614654-24.01%
3DMark Timespy CPU785711047-28.88%
PCMark 1078057890-1.07%
Passmark CPU2271027169-16.41%

Where this chip shines though is in its gaming performance. Thanks to its effectively identical cache pool compared to the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, the 5600X3D's gaming chops are so exceptional it actually manages to squeeze out some solid wins in our gaming tests, and any losses might at this point come down to what apps I had running in the background.

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Gaming benchmarks
ModelRyzen 5 5600X3DRyzen 7 5800X3DPerformance Difference
Returnal (Min FPS, 1080p, lowest)60119-49.58%
Returnal (Avg FPS, 1080p, lowest)2072003.50%
Total War: Warhammer III Battle (Min FPS, 1080p, lowest)4064030.74%
Total War: Warhammer III Battle (Avg FPS, 1080p, lowest) 4694690.00%
F1 2022 (Min FPS, 1080p, lowest)3623445.23%
F1 2022 (Avg FPS, 1080p, lowest)4514382.97%
Tiny Tina's Wonderland (Min 1% FPS, 1080p, lowest)272280-2.86%
Tiny Tina's Wonderland (Avg FPS, 1080p, lowest)427428-0.23%
Test System Specs

Here is the test system setup used to review the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D:

Graphics Card: Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090
Gigabyte Aorus X570 Master
CPU Cooler: Cougar Poseidon GT 360
Memory: 64GB Corsair Vengence RGB DDR4-3200
SSD: Samsung 990 Pro 2TB NVMe M.2 SSD
Power Supply: Corsair AX1000
Case: Praxis Wetbench

The only outlier here is the minimum framerate on Returnal, which was about half what it is for the Ryzen 7 5800X3D. Its average FPS is still about 3-4% higher though.

These benefits will obviously diminish at higher quality settings where the frame rate will become entirely GPU-locked, and since I have an RTX 4090 on the test bench, you can expect slower GPUs to hit that limit much faster, but it's fair to say that this is the same level of gaming performance for roughly 33% less, even considering the recent 5800X3D price cut to $349.

What's more, the chip runs slightly cooler and uses about 22% less power than the Ryzen 7 5800X3D. 

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Power and thermals
ModelRyzen 5 5600X3DRyzen 7 5800X3DPerformance Difference
Min Power Draw (W)20.53930.093-31.75%
Max Power Draw (W)94.11121.159-22.33%
Min Temperature (°C)32.334.4-6.10%
Max Temperature (°C)77.681.9-5.25%

In short, if you're looking for a budget midrange chip to power a 1080p or 1440p gaming rig and you have an AM4 board, just stop what you're doing and buy this chip - if and while you can.

AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D: Price & availability

An AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)
  • How much does it cost? $229 (about £195/AU$330)
  • When is it available? Available starting July 7, 2023
  • Where can you get it? Available in the US at Micro Center stores

So the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D is only available in the US through Micro Center stores, at an MSRP of $229, while supplies last. AMD only made so many of these chips, and they aren't planning on making more, so if you want to head over to your local Micro Center location and pick one up, you'll have to move somewhat fast I imagine. I don't think anyone knows how many of these chips are going to be available or for how long.

If there is a knock on this chip, it is that AMD never seemed to want to release it, which makes business sense at least. These chips are so good that they pretty much blow up any reason to buy the Ryzen 7 5800X3D, and naturally, AMD would want to sell the chip that's going to make it the most money.

There's no getting around the fact though that gamers who did buy the Ryzen 7 5800X3D could have gotten the same performance for cheaper, but didn't. I can't hold that against this chip per se, but I do wish that this was the chip offered last year rather than the 5800X3D - and that gamers outside the US could get their hands on it.

Should you buy the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D?

An AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D

(Image credit: Future / John Loeffler)

Buy it if...

You're looking to upgrade your AM4 system one last time
This is the last processor you should buy for an AM4 system (if you're a gamer, anyway).

You're tight on cash
This chip isn't necessarily cheap, but for a gaming processor, you can't beat this level of price-to-performance value.

Don't buy it if...

You're not in the US
It's not that you shouldn't buy it, it's that you can't buy it. At least, not directly; Micro Center doesn't ship outside of the US.

You don't have an AM4 system
If you've got a next-gen Intel system or you've already moved on to AM5, don't bother with this chip - it'll just be a downgrade.

How I tested the AMD Ryzen 5 5600X3D

  • I spent about a week testing it
  • Primarily gaming, but also some productivity and creative work

I put this chip through our standard battery of tests, but given the limited availability and the fact that this is a last-gen chip, I only compared it to the best AM4 chip of the last-gen (and the one I'd still broadly recommend to those who can't find the Ryzen 5 5600X3D), the AMD Ryzen 7 5800X3D.

Primarily, this is a gaming-focused chip, so I spent the most time looking at its gaming performance. In this case, I played several games on it, as well as using my standard battery of built-in benchmark tests to get comparable numbers.

We pride ourselves on our independence and our rigorous review-testing process, offering up long-term attention to the products we review and making sure our reviews are updated and maintained - regardless of when a device was released, if you can still buy it, it's on our radar.

Read more about how we test

First reviewed July 2023

John Loeffler
Components Editor

John (He/Him) is the Components Editor here at TechRadar and he is also a programmer, gamer, activist, and Brooklyn College alum currently living in Brooklyn, NY. 

Named by the CTA as a CES 2020 Media Trailblazer for his science and technology reporting, John specializes in all areas of computer science, including industry news, hardware reviews, PC gaming, as well as general science writing and the social impact of the tech industry.

You can find him online on Threads @johnloeffler.

Currently playing: Baldur's Gate 3 (just like everyone else).