When the Ryzen 9 5950X debuted in 2020, it was a staggeringly strong productivity and gaming CPU, with 16 cores and 32 threads of Zen 3 power for a princely £750. A little over three years later and next-gen Zen 4 CPUs are firmly here, but the 5950X remains the most powerful productivity CPU for the venerable AM4 platform.
That makes the 5950X a tempting upgrade option for anyone using an older Ryzen processor that wants to keep using their existing motherboard and RAM, and today this CPU has breached a new low-water mark: £360 on Amazon UK, 52% off its original recommended retail price. (It’s also a nearly-as-good 50% off at the US.)
That’s a great deal for a 32-thread CPU that still crushes through any multi-threaded, easily parallelisable task, like code compilation, scientific computing, video production or 3D rendering – and of course given Zen 3’s strides in single-core performance, it performs great in PC games too, only losing out to the 5800X3D in terms of raw gaming performance amongst Zen 3 designs.
You’ll want a good degree of CPU cooling for this CPU, so it’s worth considering something like Noctua’s NH-D15 air cooler or a 240mm+ AiO to ensure adequate performance when all 16 cores are loaded up.
Otherwise though, this is a drop-in upgrade for many Ryzen 1000 to Ryzen 5000 systems, perhaps requiring a quick check that the BIOS can be upgraded to support Ryzen 5000 processors for the oldest AMD Ryzen compatible motherboards.