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The Best CPUs?

By that, I mean the CPUs that offer the best performance at a given price range.

If you have the time or knowledge to do research… but who does in this busy world?
I do realize that not everyone has the time nor knowledge to read detailed CPU reviews.

I write this guide on the best CPUs to help you save your time and money!

Summary: Skip to the recommendations

  1. Best Entry-level CPUs
  2. Best Lower Mid-range CPUs
  3. Best Upper Mid-range CPUs
  4. Best 300-400$ High-end CPUs
  5. Best 500$ High-end CPUs
  6. Best 16-32 Cores CPUs

This is an Worldwide Guide!

Do you live in the USA?

Use Amazon or B&H for your purchase.

Do you live outside of the USA?

No problem. All the parts can be purchased from B&H, who ships worldwide.
Prices for B&H as of September 2nd 2019. Click on Amazon links to see prices.

Best Entry-level CPUs:

Good value!
Intel Pentium Gold G5400

Get the Intel Pentium Gold G5400 from Amazon

– $60.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Coffee Lake – Frequency (Turbo): 3.7 (N/A) GHz
Cores (Threads): 2 (4) – Integrated GPU: Intel UHD 610
– RAM Support: DDR4
TDP: 54 W – Socket: LGA 1151 (300 series chipset only)

The budget CPU king: Outstanding value!

The Intel Pentium G5400 is based on the 8th generation Intel Coffee Lake architecture and runs at a frequency of 3.7GHz.

Compared to the AMD Athlon 200GE, the Intel Pentium G5400 offers higher performance thanks to better IPC and an higher frequency.

For roughly 20$ more, you may want to consider the much higher performance AMD Ryzen 3 2200G, which offers four cores and graphics with far higher performance.

Don’t waste your money on the Pentium Gold G5500 or G5600
They only run at 100MHz and 200MHz more, respectively, than the Pentium G5400. We’re talking about less than 2.5% and less than 5% more performance, not enough to make a difference that you’ll feel. This, for a cost increase that’s significantly higher, that your wallet will definitely feel.

Pros:
– Best single-threaded CPU performance at price point.
– Better than ever multi-threaded performance at this price point, thanks to  Hyper-Threading
– Integrated video card, so you don’t require a dedicated video card.
– LGA 1151 socket: You can upgrade to an higher-end Core i3/i5/i7 latest gen Coffee Lake CPUs simply by swapping out your CPU.
– 54W TDP is lower than the competition.

Cons:
– Only a dual-core CPU, not quad-core
– Completely locked, overclocking is not supported nor possible.
– The integrated video card is underwhelming, very weak performance, far from a Gaming PC required performance level.

Ideal for:
– A family PC
– Budget Gaming PC
– Budget Office PCs
– NAS, Streaming PC, Media server

Avoid for:
– Heavy multitasking
– Heavy Audio/photo/video editing

Best Entry-Level APU (CPU + GPU in one):

Get the AMD Ryzen 3 2200G Processor with Radeon Vega 8 Graphics from Amazon

– $79.99 (B&H – Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Zen
Frequency (Turbo): 3.5 (3.7) GHz
Cores (Threads): 4 cores/ 4 threads
Integrated GPU: AMD Radeon Vega 8 512 GPU Cores, 1100MHz
– RAM Support: DDR4 2933MHz Dual Channel
TDP: 65W
Socket: AMD AM4

Excellent integrated graphic performance, for a gaming PC on a small budget.

The AMD Ryzen 3 2200G feature the AMD Radeon Vega 8 integrated graphics, which offer gaming performance that is far better than Intel integrated graphics, 2-3x the performance at 1920 x 1080.

For 80$, you get a high performance quad-core CPU, along with much better integrated graphic performance than what Intel offers.

On top of that, you can overclock the AMD Ryzen 3 2200G.

Note that you want to pair it up with dual-channel (two or four sticks) of DDR4 RAM, frequency up to 2933MHz, for the best performance possible in video games. Avoid using a single stick of RAM: It can halve gaming performance.

Get the AMD Ryzen 3 3200G Processor with Radeon Vega 8 Graphics from Amazon

– $99.00 (B&H – Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 2nd generation
Frequency (Turbo): 3.6 (4.0) GHz
Cores (Threads): 4 cores/ 4 threads
Integrated GPU: AMD Radeon Vega 8 512 GPU Cores, 1250MHz
– RAM Support: DDR4 2933MHz Dual Channel
TDP: 65W
Socket: AMD AM4

Slight upgrade compared to the AMD Ryzen 3 2200G

Manufactured on a 12nm process as opposed to 14nm for the Ryzen 3 2200G, the Ryzen 3 3200G offers slightly higher performance, thanks to higher base, Turbo and GPU frequencies.  You now get 3.6/4.0GHz CPU base/Turbo and 1250MHz for the GPU, compared to 3.5/3.7/1100MHz for the Ryzen 3 2200G.

The AMD Ryzen 3 3200G feature the AMD Radeon Vega 8 integrated graphics, which offer gaming performance that is far better than Intel integrated graphics, 2-3x the performance at 1920 x 1080.

For roughly $100, you get a high performance quad-core CPU, that trade blows with the more expensive Intel Core i3-9100, along with much better integrated graphic performance than what Intel offers.

On top of that, you can overclock the AMD Ryzen 3 3200G, unlike the Intel Core i3-9100.

Note that you want to pair it up with dual-channel (two or four sticks) of DDR4 RAM, frequency up to 2933MHz, for the best performance possible in video games. Avoid using a single stick of RAM: It can halve gaming performance.

CPU performance: AMD Ryzen 3 3200G V.S. Intel Core i3-9100

At stock frequencies, the AMD Ryzen 3 3200G offers competitive performance compared to the Intel Core i3-9100, but still a notch or two lower, so if you only care about CPU performance, the Intel Core i3-9100 might be a better choice, although keep in mind that its more expensive and motherboards for it can be more expensive too.

Intel Core i3-9100

Get the Intel Core i3-9100 from Amazon
$122.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

Intel Core i3-9100F (No integrated graphics)

Get the Intel Core i3-9100F from Amazon
– N/A at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Coffee Lake – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/4.2GHz
Cores (Threads): 4 (4) – Integrated GPU: Intel UHD 630 (None for i3-9100F)
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 65W – Socket: LGA1151 (300 series chipset)

If you don’t care about graphic performance and only care about CPU performance, the Intel Core i3-9100 is a notch or two faster than the AMD Ryzen 3 2200G.

The Core i3-9100 brings a welcome change compared to the previous generation Core i3-8100, that is the addition of Turbo. So instead of being limited to its 3.6GHz base frequency like the Core i3-8100, the Core i3-9100 can Boost to 4.2GHz, a 600Mhz boost compared to the previous generation!

Note that the Core i3-9100F, which has no integrated graphics, can be found at a significantly lower price, making it an attractive option for a budget gaming PC.

Also, the regular Core i3-9100 is not that less expensive than the AMD Ryzen 5 2400G, which offers better CPU performance thanks to multi-threading, not to mention vastly better graphic performance, so you may want to consider that CPU instead.

High-end APU (CPU + GPU in one):
AMD Ryzen 5 2400G

Get the AMD Ryzen 5 2400G Processor with Radeon RX Vega 11 Graphics from Amazon

– $119.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Zen – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/3.9 GHz
Cores (Threads): 4 (8) – Integrated GPU: AMD Radeon RX Vega 11 704 GPU Cores, 1250MHz
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 2933MHz – TDP: 65W – Socket: AM4

Compared to the Core i3-9100, the AMD Ryzen 5 2400G offers slightly lower single-threaded performance, but better multi-threaded performance, so if you do any content creation, this CPU will offer better performance, thanks to its 4 cores / 8 threads setup.

On top of that, you get a powerful integrated graphic solution, the AMD Radeon RX Vega 11, which trade blows with the $100+ dedicated Nvidia Geforce GT 1030 graphic card.

In other words, you can use this APU to play video games. Games will be playable at 1920 x 1080 (Full HD 1080p), although you’ll have to lower graphic settings more or less, depending on the game, to get high enough frame rates. At 1600 x 900, or HD 720p, pretty much any game should run smoothly.

Its multiplier is also unlocked, meaning that it can be overclocked if you wish to do so.

Note that you want to pair it up with dual-channel (two or four sticks) of DDR4 RAM, frequency up to 2933MHz, for the best performance possible in video games. Avoid using a single stick of RAM: It can halve gaming performance.

Note that if you don’t care about integrated graphics performance, I don’t recommend the Ryzen 5 2400G. The Intel Core i5-9400F or Ryzen 5 2600 are 6 cores CPUs at similar prices.

AMD Ryzen 5 3400G

Get the AMD Ryzen 5 3400G Processor with Radeon RX Vega 11 Graphics from Amazon

– $139.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 2nd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.7/4.2 GHz
Cores (Threads): 4 (8) – Integrated GPU: AMD Radeon RX Vega 11 704 GPU Cores, 1400MHz
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 2933MHz – TDP: 65W – Socket: AM4

Slight upgrade compared to the AMD Ryzen 5 2400G

Manufactured on a 12nm process as opposed to 14nm for the Ryzen 5 2400G, the Ryzen 5 3400G offers slightly higher performance, thanks to higher base, Turbo and GPU frequencies.  You now get 3.7/4.2GHz CPU base/Turbo and 1400MHz for the GPU, compared to 3.6/3.9/1250MHz for the Ryzen 5 2400G.

You still get the powerful integrated graphic solution, the AMD Radeon RX Vega 11, which trade blows with the base-level $100+ dedicated Nvidia Geforce GT 1030 graphic card.

In other words, you can use this APU to play video games. Games will be playable at 1920 x 1080 (Full HD 1080p), although you’ll have to lower graphic settings more or less, depending on the game, to get high enough frame rates. At 1600 x 900, or HD 720p, pretty much any game should run smoothly.

Its multiplier is also unlocked, meaning that it can be overclocked if you wish to do so.

For roughly $150, you get a high performance quad-core CPU, with the most powerful integrated graphic available on the market.

Note that you want to pair it up with dual-channel (two or four sticks) of DDR4 RAM, frequency up to 2933MHz, for the best performance possible in video games. Avoid using a single stick of RAM: It can halve gaming performance.

Note that if you don’t care about integrated graphics performance, I don’t recommend the Ryzen 5 3400G. The Intel Core i5-9400F or Ryzen 5 2600 are 6 cores CPUs at similar or lower prices.

Intel Core i5-9400 V.S. AMD Ryzen 5 2600/2600X

– Intel Core i5-9400F for the best gaming performance
– AMD Ryzen 5 2600 or 2600X for all around performance, overclocking, better multi-threaded performance and ECC RAM support

Get the AMD Ryzen 5 2600 from Amazon

$129.30 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 2nd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.4/3.9 GHz
Cores (Threads): 6 (12) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 65W – Socket: AM4

Get the Intel Core i5-9400F from Amazon

$149.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Coffee Lake – Frequency/Turbo: 2.9/4.1 GHz
Cores (Threads): 6 (6) – Integrated GPU: None, dedicated graphic card required
– RAM Support: DDR4 Dual Channel – TDP: 65W – Socket: LGA1151 (300 series chipset)

Get the AMD RYZEN 5 2600X from Amazon

$149.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 2nd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/4.2 GHz
Cores (Threads): 6 (12) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 95W – Socket: AM4

For gaming performance only:
The Intel Core i5-9400F and the AMD Ryzen 5 2600X trade blows when it comes to gaming performance, but ultimately the Core i5-9400F is a notch faster, so if all you care about is gaming performance, the Core i5-9400F is a good choice.

However, keep in mind that the Ryzen 5 2600 and 2600X can be overclocked, unlike the Core i5-9400F. When overclocked to 4GHz+, they can match the Core i5-9400F gaming performance.

All around performance:

The Intel Core i5-9400F and Ryzen 5 2600X trade blows when it comes to single-threaded performance, with the Core i5-9400F being a notch faster.

However, with support for 12 threads, as opposed to 6 for the Core i5-9400F, the Ryzen 5 2600 and 2600X have no problem outperforming the Intel Core i5-9400F in multithreaded workloads. If you are a content creator, working with photo, video, 3D or any other heavy workload, the AMD 2600/2600X offer significantly higher performance than the Core i5-9400F.

The AMD Ryzen 5 2600 and 2600X offer ECC RAM support, unlike the Core i5-9400F and i5-9600K.

If you especially care about all around performance and multi-threaded performance, you might want to consider the AMD Ryzen 7 2700 below. At its current price, it offers the best multi-threaded performance with 8 cores and support for 16 threads.

Which one would I pick?
I’d go with the AMD Ryzen 5 2600X, for the overall performance. Sure, gaming performance is a bit lower, but you’re unlikely to see the difference. If you want to overclock, save your money, get the Ryzen 5 2600.

Best Lower Mid-range CPUs:

AMD Ryzen 5 3600 V.S. Ryzen 7 2700

– AMD Ryzen 5 3600 for the best gaming performance, all-around performance and PCIe 4.0
– AMD Ryzen 7 2700 for content creators and heavy workloads, especially if overclocked

Get the AMD Ryzen 5 3600 from Amazon

$197.85 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 3rd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/4.2 GHz
Cores (Threads): 6 (12) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 3200MHz – TDP: 65W – Socket: AM4

Get the AMD Ryzen 7 2700 from Amazon

$186.69 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 2nd generation
Frequency Base/Turbo: 3.2/4.1 GHz
Cores (Threads): 8 (16)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4
TDP: 65W
Socket: AM4

For gaming performance only:
With its newer 3rd generation architecture and higher frequencies, the Ryzen 5 3600 offers significantly higher gaming performance than the Ryzen 7 2700.

All around performance:

Again, with its newer 3rd generation architecture and higher frequencies, the Ryzen 5 3600 holds the advantage when it comes to single-threaded performance.

However, the AMD Ryzen 7 2700, with 8 cores and 16 threads, as opposed to 6 cores and 12 threads for the Ryzen 5 3600, holds a slight advantage in multithreaded workloads.

Overclocked performance:
While at stock frequencies, the Ryzen 5 3600 has quite higher frequencies than the Ryzen 7 2700, if you overclock both CPUs, the multi-threaded performance advantage of the Ryzen 7 2700 will widen, with both CPUs now running at similar or at least closer overclocked frequencies.

Both CPUs offer ECC RAM support.

The Ryzen 5 3600, with a newer X570 chipset equipped motherboard, support PCIe 4.0, allowing you to use new, higher-performance SSDs.

Best Upper Mid-range CPUs:

Intel Core i5-9600K V.S. AMD Ryzen 5 3600X V.S. AMD Ryzen 7 2700X

– Intel Core i5-9600K for the best gaming performance
– AMD Ryzen 5 3600X for all around performance
– AMD Ryzen 7 2700X for the best multi-threaded performance

Get the Intel Core i5-9600K from Amazon

$237.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

Intel Core i5-9600KF (No integrated graphics)

Get the Intel Core i5-9600KF from Amazon
– $214.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Coffee Lake – Frequency/Turbo: 3.7/4.6 GHz
Cores (Threads): 6 (6) – Integrated GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 630
– RAM Support: DDR4 Dual Channel – TDP: 95W – Socket: LGA1151 (300 series chipset)

Get the AMD Ryzen 5 3600X from Amazon

$239.00 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 3rd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.8/4.4 GHz
Cores (Threads): 6 (12) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 95W – Socket: AM4

Get the AMD Ryzen 2700X from Amazon

$242.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 2nd generation
Frequency Base/Turbo: 3.7/4.3 GHz
Cores (Threads): 8 (16)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4
TDP: 105W
Socket: AM4

For gaming performance only:
The Intel Core i5-9600K, with its higher Turbo frequencies, offers the best gaming performance, except for the even higher frequency and more expensive Intel Core i7-9700K or i9-9900K. That said, the Ryzen 5 3600X only trails it by a few % and if you play at a 1440p or 4K resolution, performance will be similar.

The Ryzen 7 2700X, while no slouch, is definitely a step behind, being based on the older 2nd generation of AMD Ryzen CPUs.

All around performance:

The Ryzen 5 3600X is a very well balanced CPU, offering both great gaming and all around performance.  The Core i5-9600K does offer very slightly better single-threaded performance though, thanks to its higher Turbo frequency but no where enough to counter-balance its performance deficit in multithreaded workloads.

With support for 12 threads, as opposed to 6 for the Core 9600K, the Ryzen 5 3600X have no problem outperforming the Core i5-9600K in multithreaded workloads.

Now, if you don’t care about gaming performance and only care about content creation performance, such as photo, video or 3D, the 8-core/16 threads AMD Ryzen 7 2700X is the best choice at this price point. However, if you can afford spending a bit or quite a lot more, you can get higher performance CPUs, which I recommend below.

Note that both AMD Ryzen CPUs offer ECC RAM support, unlike the Core i5-9600K.
The Ryzen CPU, with a newer X570 chipset equipped motherboard, support PCIe 4.0, allowing you to use new, higher-performance SSDs.

Also worth noting, the Intel Core i5-9600K does not included a CPU Cooler, so you must get an aftermarket one.

Best 300-400$ High-End CPU:

Intel Core i7-9700K V.S. AMD Ryzen 7 3700X V.S. AMD Ryzen 7 3800X

– The AMD Ryzen 7 3700X offers great value, with all around performance at a great price
– The AMD Ryzen 7 3800X takes all around performance up a notch
– The Intel Core i7-9700K holds a slight single-threaded performance advantage and very slight edge for gaming at 1080p only

Get the AMD Ryzen 7 3700X from Amazon

$327.89 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 3rd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/4.4 GHz
Cores (Threads): 8(16) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 65W – Socket: AM4

Get the Intel Core i7-9700K from Amazon

$359.00 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

Intel Core i7-9700KF (No integrated graphics)

Get the Intel Core i7-9700KF from Amazon
– $349.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Coffee Lake – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/4.9 GHz
Cores (Threads): 8(8) – Integrated GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 630
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 95W – Socket: LGA1151 (requires 300 series chipset)

Get the AMD Ryzen 7 3800X from Amazon

$399.00 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 3rd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.9/4.5 GHz
Cores (Threads): 8(16) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 95W – Socket: AM4

Intel Core i7-9700K V.S. AMD RYZEN 7 3700X and 3800X:

With its higher Turbo frequency, the Intel Core i7-9700K just holds on to the single-threaded performance crown and has a very slight edge in 1080p gaming performance.

However, the Ryzen 7 3700X and 3800X have a significant advantage in multithreaded performance, while performance in gaming at 1080p is close enough to not perceive a difference and at 1440p/4K, the graphic card is the bottleneck.

For all around performance, I’d recommend the AMD Ryzen 7 3700X or 3800X.

Single threaded performance:
Performance per core: System responsiveness, web browsing, gaming

Very slight advantage: Intel Core i7-9700K
With the AMD 3rd generation Ryzen architecture offering much improved IPC than the second generation of AMD Ryzen CPUs, it just edges the Intel 9th gen Coffee Lake architecture IPC. That is, at the same frequency, the AMD 3rd gen Ryzen offers just a hair better performance.

That said, the Intel Core i7-9700K runs at higher Turbo frequencies (4.9GHz) than the AMD Ryzen 7 3700X (4.4GHz) and 3800X (4.5GHz), allowing it to keep a very slight advantage for single threaded performance.

That said, that advantage has greatly narrowed and is difficult to perceive.

Gaming Performance:

– Slight win for the Intel Core i7-9700K at 1080p
– Similar at 1440p/4K and on multiple monitors

Thanks to its higher Turbo frequencies, the Intel Core i7-9700K has a very slight edge in 1080p gaming performance. Hardly enough to be perceivable.

Mind you, if you game at 2560 x 1440, 4K or on multiple displays, the performance gap shrinks and you’re unlikely to perceive a difference: At that point, it’s mostly all about the graphic card(s).

Multi threaded performance:
Performance when all cores are working: Rendering, video/photo editing, 3D, other programs that use many cores.

Best: Ryzen 7 3800X
Great value: Ryzen 7 3700X
Least good: Core i7-9700K

The AMD Ryzen 3700X and 3800X offer 8 cores and can handle 16 threads.

The Intel Core i7-9700K, with 8 cores but no Hyper-Threading, is limited to 8 threads and thus is no match for the AMD Ryzen 7 3700X and 3800X CPUs which can handle 16 threads.

Note that both AMD Ryzen CPUs offer ECC RAM support, unlike the Intel Core CPU.
The Ryzen CPUs, with a newer X570 chipset equipped motherboard, support PCIe 4.0, allowing you to use new, higher-performance SSDs.

Also worth noting, the Intel Core i7-9700K does not included a CPU Cooler, so you must get an aftermarket one.

Best 500$ High-End CPU:

Intel Core i9-9900K V.S. AMD Ryzen 9 3900X

– The AMD Ryzen 9 3900X with 12 cores/24 threads, easily wins in multithreaded performance, while offering nearly as good 1080p gaming performance and single-threaded performance.
– The Intel Core i7-9900K holds a very slight edge for gaming at 1080p only and still a slight edge in single-threaded performance, but is no match in multithreaded performance.

Get the AMD Ryzen 9 3900X from Amazon

$499.00 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Ryzen 3rd generation – Frequency/Turbo: 3.8/4.6 GHz
Cores (Threads): 12(24) – Integrated GPU: None
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 105W – Socket: AM4

Get the Intel Core i9-9900K from Amazon

$494.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

Intel Core i9-9900KF (No integrated graphics)

Get the Intel Core i9-9900KF from Amazon
$479.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Coffee Lake – Frequency/Turbo: 3.6/5.0 GHz
Cores (Threads): 8(16) – Integrated GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 630
– RAM Support: Dual Channel DDR4 – TDP: 95W – Socket: LGA1151 (requires 300 series chipset)

We have a similar story here: With its higher Turbo frequency, the Intel Core i9-9900K just holds on to the single-threaded performance crown and has a very slight edge in 1080p gaming performance.

However, the Ryzen 9 3900X has a massive advantage in multithreaded performance, with 50% more cores/threads, while performance in gaming at 1080p is close enough to not perceive a difference and at 1440p/4K, the graphic card is the bottleneck.

For all around performance, I’d recommend the AMD Ryzen 9 3900X.

Best 16-32 cores CPUs:

Summary:

Update coming in September: Only buy the 14-16 cores Intel CPU or AMD 16 core counter-part if you need a CPU now. AMD will be launching the 16 cores/ 32 threads Ryzen 9 3950X in September, with significantly improved performance, lower power consumption, lower platform cost (AM4 socket) and PCIe 4.0 support.

The 14 cores Intel Core i9-7940X is difficult to recommend: It costs a LOT more than the AMD Threadripper 2950X, while those two CPUs trade blow in multi-threaded performance.
The 16 cores Intel Core i9-7960X makes sense at its price point: It slightly outperforms the AMD Threadripper 2950X and it’s less expensive than the Core i9-7980XE and AMD AMD Threadripper 2990WX.

18 cores Intel Core i9-7980XE versus AMD 32 cores Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX: If your workload has no issues scaling beyond 16 cores, then you’ll benefit from the 32 cores of the AMD TR 2990WX. Video editing, 3D rendering and other similar tasks will benefit from the 32 cores AMD TR 2990WX. Your workload doesn’t scale very well beyond 16 cores? Then the 16 cores AMD Ryzen TR 2950X is hard to beat when it comes to offering great value. For best performance in software that doesn’t scale well beyond 16 cores, if money is no object, the 16 cores Intel Core i9-7960X or the 18 cores Intel Core i9-7980XE are recommended.

Click here to see the price of the AMD Ryzen Thread ripper 2950X on Amazon

$689.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Zen+ (2nd generation)
Frequency Base/Max Turbo: 3.5/4.4 GHz
Cores (Threads): 16 (32)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Quad Channel DDR4
TDP: 180W
Socket: sTR4

Get the Intel Core i9-7940X from Amazon

$1339.00 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Skylake-X
Frequency Base/Turbo/Max: 3.1/4.3/4.4 GHz
Cores (Threads): 14 (28)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Quad Channel DDR4
TDP: 140W
Socket: LGA 2066

Get the Intel Core i9-7960X from Amazon

$1579.00 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Skylake-X
Frequency Base/Turbo/Max: 2.8/4.2/4.4 GHz
Cores (Threads): 16 (32)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Quad Channel DDR4
TDP: 140W
Socket: LGA 2066

Click here to see the price of the AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX on Amazon

$1693.64 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Zen+ (2nd generation)
Frequency Base/Max Turbo: 3.0/4.2 GHz
Cores (Threads): 32 (64)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Quad Channel DDR4
TDP: 250W
Socket: sTR4

Get the Intel Core i9-7980XE from Amazon

$1849.99 at B&H (Worldwide Shipping)

– Architecture: Skylake-X
Frequency Base/Turbo/Max: 2.6/4.2/4.4 GHz
Cores (Threads): 18 (36)
Integrated GPU: N/A
– RAM Support: Quad Channel DDR4
TDP: 140W
Socket: LGA 2066

Intel Core i9 strengths: Lightly threaded and single-threaded performance
The Intel Core i7/i9 series feature an architecture with higher IPC or in other words, higher single-threaded performance at the same frequency and on top of that its Turbo and Turbo Max frequencies are often higher. This mean that for single-threaded and lightly threaded programs, which don’t scale well to many cores, the Core i7/i9 series will offer slightly higher performance than the AMD Threadripper CPUs. However, you aren’t buying these CPUs to run lightly threaded workloads, so this argument is weak.

AMD Ryzen ThreadripperX strengths: Best value with its lower cost for an high number of cores
If you run rendering, video editing, 3D, other programs that use as many cores as available and want a lot of cores without spending too much, the AMD Ryzen Threadripper CPUs are the obvious choices.

PCI-Express lanes:

Advantage: AMD
If you need a lot of PCI-Express lanes on your PC platform, for multiple graphic cards, PCIe drives, etc., then the AMD X399 platform has the edge over the Intel X299 platform
You get 44 PCI-Express lanes with the Core i9 CPUs
You get 64 PCI-Express lanes with the AMD Threadripper CPUs.

No CPU cooler, no integrated graphics, high power consumption and heat dissipation
Note that none of the four CPUs include a CPU cooler, nor an integrated graphic card, so you need to also purchase a CPU Cooler and a dedicated graphic card.

All CPUs have high power consumption, so make sure that the CPU cooler and case cooling can handle them, especially if you intend to overclock them!

Conclusion

I hope that you’ve enjoyed this latest edition of the Best CPUs article.

With this being such a long article with many recommendations and alternatives, you may find some typos.

Alternatively, you may disagree with me and believe that there’s a better option than my recommendation.

Or you may have some questions.

If that happens, leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you.