AMD’s latest Ryzen CPU is misleading as it breaks its own rules

A worrying change.

AMD confusingly names its new CPU, and we have no idea why.

We like to focus on good news when possible, but sometimes, the bad and the ugly need attention. AMD Ryzen 7 5700 was never intended to be a frontrunner CPU, but we expected it to slot in as a budget version of its X counterpart. Unfortunately, AMD’s gone against the grain with its latest design ethos, throwing us a curveball that’s not entirely welcome.

Hardware Unboxed goes into detail about AMD Ryzen 7 5700 and comes out of it more than a little unimpressed. Generally speaking, the only thing that separates the X and non-X Ryzen CPUs are clock speeds. That means an identical cache, core count, and thread count but different base and boost clock speeds.

Take Ryzen 5800 and Ryzen 5800X as examples. Both have eight cores, 16 threads, and 36MB of L3 cache. Ryzen 5800, however, is slower with a 3.4GHz and 4.6GHz base and boost clock speed, while Ryzen 5800X has 3.8GHz/4.7GHz. That’s been the case for a long time, at least until Ryzen 5700 came along.

Unlike nearly every other take on non-X CPUs, Ryzen 5700 has more in common with its G counterpart. Specifically, it only has a 16MB L3 cache instead of 32MB like the 5700X. It breaks the rules that AMD itself has set and causes confusion. It’s particularly disappointing since Team Red emphasises just how important L3 cache is for gaming with its X3D range.

It means that the AMD 7 5700 is notably less impressive when in play. According to Hardware Unboxed’s tests, it leads to a difference as high as 40% in some games. That’s no small feat and can take ultra settings off the table in some cases. It’s also not cheap enough to warrant the loss of performance. The 5700X costs only a fraction more than this new version. What is it with AMD and pricing lately?

Based on this whole video, we can’t recommend the CPU at all. It’s also a potentially worrying change of pace from AMD. The brand could’ve avoided it entirely had it just named the new processor something else. Tying to a familiar product immediately sets a bar that Ryzen 5700 doesn’t live up to. Here’s hoping it’s a one-off mistake and not a new precedent. Otherwise, the naming process of AMD CPUs is going to be harder to parse going forward.

A render of an AMD processor against a white background.

AMD Ryzen 7 5700X

“AMD Ryzen 7 5700X elite gaming desktop processors comes with eight cores optimised for high-fps gaming rigs. At least you know what you get with this one.”

We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.