Aside from power consumption concerns, AMD’s dominance of the DIY and enthusiast gaming industries has been slowed by Intel’s 12th generation Core processors. Team Red is anticipated to win the tug of war with Zen 4, but in the interim, the firm may produce new Zen 3 SKUs to keep things balanced until Zen 4 arrives.
Following the success of Intel’s Alder Lake CPUs, AMD appears to be countering Intel’s offers with reduced Zen 3 processors for desktops and Zen 3+ processors for laptops, rather than with Zen 4. The latter wave is a respectable mid-generation update — notably in terms of performance-per-watt — but it can’t compete with Alder Lake in higher power classes, as our own Tim Schiesser pointed out.
Team Red may also be prepared to deliver additional Ryzen 7 5700X, Ryzen 5 5600, and Ryzen 5 5500 CPUs as a stopgap solution until Zen 4 is ready to launch, according to a recent report. The rumour comes from numerous well-known leakers, so there’s a good chance true SKUs will be released shortly, potentially alongside the much-anticipated Ryzen 5800X3D.
The Ryzen 7 5700X is expected to have a 65-watt processor with 8 cores and 16 threads, making it a direct competitor to Intel’s Core i5-12600K and Core i5-12600 processors. Intel mastered the recipe for a mainstream CPU, as we explained in our assessment of the 12600K, and it may sometimes approach Ryzen 7 5800X levels of performance. If AMD can somewhat undercut Intel’s Core i5-12600 cost, it may be able to entice some customers away from Intel’s offering.
The Ryzen 5 5600, which will compete with Intel’s value champ, the Core i5-12400, is arguably the most intriguing of the incoming CPUs. The Ryzen 5 5600 will apparently have 6 cores and 12 threads, putting it in the same performance range as the present Ryzen 5 5600X.
These CPUs will, of course, be the last to function on AMD’s AM4 platform, but the Lisa Su-led business has a good chance of making them a worthwhile upgrade path for individuals who are still using previous Ryzen processors and aren’t quite ready to make a complete redesign of their gaming rigs.