AMD Vs Intel: Which CPUs Are Better In 2024?

AMD and Intel have battled for CPU dominance for decades. As 2024 approaches, which company makes the superior processors? AMD’s new Ryzen and Intel’s Raptor Lake go head to head. This article examines their tech specs, performance benchmarks, features, and value to see which brand maintains the lead.

Initial tests show AMD’s Zen 4 CPUs outperforming Intel’s 13th-generation chips in multi-threaded workloads by a wide margin thanks to more cores and efficiency gains. However, Intel’s single-core speeds beat AMD’s for gaming. Deciding a victor isn’t so straightforward.

AMD established an early lead with platform advantages like DDR5 and PCIe Gen 5 on their new AM5 socket. But Intel optimized heavily for games and has the most software support. With both making gains, determining the best CPU hinges on specific needs -workloads, budgets, and intended uses.

Table of Contents

AMD vs Intel: Which CPU is Best?

AMD vs Intel: Which CPU is Best?

AMD and Intel have been the two dominant players in the desktop CPU market for decades. In 2022, both have released new generations that are making things more competitive than ever. So which brand offers the best processors right now? Let’s take a closer look at how AMD and Intel stack up.


One of the most important factors is real-world performance. Both AMD (Ryzen 5000 series) and Intel (12th gen Core) have incredibly powerful CPUs at the high end. However, AMD may have a slight edge in multi-threaded workloads that can utilize more cores and threads effectively. The Ryzen 9 5950X and Ryzen 7 5800X3D both outperform Intel’s top 12th gen chips in tasks like rendering and content creation.

However, Intel regains the lead in single-threaded tasks like most games. The Core i9-12900K delivers the highest Clock speeds and single-core performance, giving it an edge for pure gaming. So performance depends on your specific usage – AMD for heavily multi-threaded work, Intel for gaming.

Platform Features

AMD was the first to market with PCIe Gen 4 and DDR5 memory support on its AM4 socket with 500-series motherboards. This gives early adopters the latest I/O technology. However, Intel’s 600-series boards will also support both later in 2022.

Intel does have an advantage with its integrated graphics (IGPs) offering basic rendering without a dGPU needed. AMD CPUs require a separate graphics card.


AMD CPUs tend to offer more cores and threads for the money. For example, the Ryzen 7 5800X3D vs i7-12700K. At the high end, Intel’s prices are generally higher but performance may justify the added cost for gaming. Overall both AMD and Intel offer competitive options across different budgets.

So in summary, while both companies make excellent choices, AMD tops Intel slightly in 2022 for content creation due to core counts. But Intel maintains the gaming crown and offers tough competition across the board. Ultimately, your specific workload and budget will determine which brand is best for you.

AMD vs Intel CPU Pricing and Value

Price RangeAMD OptionIntel OptionValue Assessment
Under $200Ryzen 5 5600G – 6c/12t, iGPU – $159Core i5-12400 – 6c/12t – $179AMD offers more value
$200-$400Ryzen 7 5700X – 8c/16t – $299Core i7-12700 – 6c/12t – $309AMD leads on cores
$400-$600Ryzen 9 5900X – 12c/24t – $449Core i7-12700K – 8c/16t – $409, i9-12900K – 16c/24t – $589AMD offers best value
$600+Ryzen Threadripper, 5800X3D – $449Core i9-12900K – $589AMD delivers more cores or performance per dollar

In summary:

  • AMD CPUs consistently provide more cores and threads than Intel equivalents at each price tier
  • This core count advantage delivers good value for both workstation and gaming performance
  • Intel competes closely on raw gaming speeds but offers less overall performance value

Therefore, AMD Ryzen CPUs are generally better value compared to Intel counterparts due to the additional processing power offered at similar price points. Intel remains competitive for optimized gaming scenarios.

Intel vs AMD CPU Gaming Performance

Single-Threaded Performance

Games are still heavily reliant on single-core speeds. Intel CPUs have a lead here thanks to the higher clock speeds of their Golden Cove cores. The flagship Intel Core i9-12900K can hit 5.2GHz which is significantly faster than AMD’s Zen 3 cores which top out around 4.7GHz. This directly translates to higher average and minimum frame rates.

Minimum Framerates

Higher single-thread speeds on Intel chips lead to fewer dropped and delayed frames during intense scenes. This provides a smoother experience especially when frame rates are under heavy load. The Core i9 reduces stutters and keeps games feeling responsive. AMD can still deliver good minimums but Intel has the edge.

Average Frame Rates

In games that utilize 6-8 optimization threads well, AMD is more competitive. The Ryzen 7 5800X3D trades blows with the Core i7-12700K due to its added 3D V-Cache helping offset Intel’s clock speed advantage. Overall differences are often marginal, within the margin of error. Game optimizations play a big role.

Core & Thread Count

More games are taking advantage of additional cores/threads. AMD CPUs like the 5900X offer 12C/24T while high-end Intel chips max out at 8C/16T or 16C/24T. For future-proofing, AMD’s core counts could age better as developers advance multithreading.

Platform Longevity

AMD’s AM4 socket has supported Ryzen for several generations, while Intel switches sockets more often. This allows upgrading an existing AMD system to future AM4 Ryzen CPUs, adding value. Intel will also require motherboard changes more frequently.

Value Proposition

While Intel offers superior speeds today, AMD Ryzen 5000 provides highly competitive levels of performance without sacrificing value. At mid-tier especially, Ryzen delivers more cores and threads for less money. Intel’s prices usually demand a gaming-specific reason to buy.

In summary, Intel leads for pure frame rates and smoothest gameplay today. But the Ryzen 5000 is a very close second with fantastic price/performance. With either brand, you can game very well at any resolution or budget. It comes down to individual priorities and workloads.

AMD vs Intel Productivity and Content Creation Performance

For users like developers, designers, engineers, and video editors, CPU performance in intensive workstation applications is important. Let’s see how AMD and Intel stack up in productivity:

Core & Thread Count

AMD pulls ahead with higher core/thread processors like the 16-core Ryzen 9 5950X. More cores allow better handling of multi-threaded workloads like rendering, compiling code, and encoding media files.

Multi-Threaded Performance

In tasks that utilize 6+ threads, AMD CPUs deliver up to 30% better performance than similarly priced Intel chips thanks to the core count advantage. The extra threads are better utilized.

Single-Threaded Tasks

Even in lightly-threaded tasks, AMD Zen 3 is competitive with Intel’s strong single-core speeds. Intel maintains a small advantage for single-app workflows.

Future Upgrades

AMD’s AM4 socket upgrade path is more flexible than Intel’s regular platform changes. This allows better long-term investment protection when upgrading existing AMD systems.

Encoding & Rendering Times

Pro-level applications like Blender, Cinebench, and Handbrake show AMD Ryzen completing complex workloads up to 40% faster than 12th-gen Intel counterparts in some cases.

Platform Value

AMD Ryzen 5000 provides more processing cores and threads for the money at every price point compared to similarly priced Intel options. This delivers tremendous workstation value.

Overall, AMD Ryzen 5000 CPUs have consolidated their lead in productivity performance thanks to increased core counts and competitive per-core performance. For content creation professionals, these AMD platforms deliver the best combination of threading capabilities and value.

AMD vs Intel Processor Specifications and Features

Both AMD and Intel are continually advancing the underlying architectures of their desktop CPUs. Let’s examine some of the key technical specifications and features of their latest chip offerings.

Processor Cores & Threads

AMD’s Ryzen 5000 chips based on the Zen 3 architecture maximize core and thread counts. The 16-core Ryzen 9 5950X leads the stack. Intel’s Alder Lake with Performance and Efficient cores max out at 16 cores as well, but Intel’s thread counts still lag AMD’s.

Motherboard Socket

AMD has stayed consistent with the AM4 socket through multiple CPU generations, providing excellent upgradeability. Intel recently switched from LGA1200 to the new LGA1700 socket, requiring a motherboard change for upgrades.

Process Node

AMD is leading the way with TSMC’s advanced 5nm process for their Ryzen 7000 chips this year. Intel is still on the 10nm node for Raptor Lake, though they aim to catch up to 5nm in 2023. Smaller nodes mean greater efficiency and performance gains.

Integrated Graphics

Intel maintains an edge with powerful Gen 12.2 Xe graphics options built into all of their K and non-K CPUs. Ryzen APUs have competitive iGPUs but non-APU Ryzen CPUs require a discrete graphics card.

Overclocking Support

AMD’s Ryzen CPUs focus on maximizing performance out of the box but don’t officially support overclocking on most SKUs. Intel K-series CPUs are designed specifically for manual and BCLK overclocking.

Memory Support

Both AMD Ryzen 5000 and Intel Alder Lake support the latest high-speed DDR5 memory as well as DDR4. Intel claims DDR5 memory efficiency advantages on their platform.

Specification Comparison:

SpecificationAMD Ryzen 7000Intel Raptor Lake
Process Node5nm TSMC10nm Intel 7
Max Cores/Threads16/3216/24
iGPU OptionSome Ryzen APUsIntegrated on all K/non-K SKUs
OverclockingNo officially on most SKUsYes, on K SKUs
Memory SupportDDR5/DDR4DDR5/DDR4

In summary, both AMD Ryzen 7000 and Intel Raptor Lake offer powerful desktop CPU options with competitive specifications. However, AMD currently has advantages in core counts, efficiency, and platform longevity.

AMD vs Intel CPU Power Consumption and Heat

AMD vs Intel CPU Power Consumption and Heat

Power efficiency and heat generation are important considerations, especially for small form factor PCs. Here’s how AMD and Intel CPUs stack up:

TDP Ratings

TDP (Thermal Design Power) indicates how much heat a CPU produces under load. AMD Ryzen TDPs tend to be lower – e.g. 65W vs Intel’s 125W for high-end chips. However, the actual power draw can exceed TDP.

Real Power Draw

Testing shows Intel CPUs can consume considerably more power than AMD chips in heavy workloads. An overclocked Intel Core i9-12900K pulls over 300W, while a Ryzen 9 5950X draws half as much.

Thermal Output

The extra power Intel CPUs demand results in higher thermals that require larger tower-style coolers or AIO liquid units. AMD CPUs can often be cooled effectively with mid-range air coolers.

Efficiency Gains

AMD leads in efficiency thanks to lower manufacturing process nodes. A 5nm Ryzen 7000 draws less power per core than Intel’s 10nm chips, despite having more cores.

Longevity & Thermal Headroom

Lower thermals allow AMD PCs to run cooler and quieter for longer periods under sustained heavy loads before thermal throttling occurs.

Overall, AMD CPUs are better options for power-constrained or thermally challenging builds like small or low-profile cases. Intel provides more performance but at the cost of higher power consumption and thermal output that requires larger cooling solutions. For most users, AMD offers a better balance of performance and efficiency.

Intel vs AMD CPU Overclocking

  • Intel CPUs ending in “K” (e.g. i5-12600K) are unlocked for overclocking. AMD does not officially support overclocking on most Ryzen CPUs, although some limited PBO (Precision Boost Overclocking) is possible.
  • With Intel, both core ratio/frequency and BCLK overclocking are possible. This allows for substantial increases in clock speeds, often up to 5GHz+ on higher-end models. Temperature/voltage become limiting factors.
  • With AMD, only Precision Boost Overclocking (PBO) is officially supported. This allows auto-overclocking within set power/temperature limits using advanced algorithms. Gains are more modest, often 100-200MHz max.
  • Intel Z-series chipsets allow extensive voltage, frequency, and BCLK controls in BIOS for extreme overclocking. AMD X570/B550 may expose some additional limited PBO controls.
  • Liquid nitrogen or other exotic cooling is required for extreme benchmark world record overclocks on Intel of 7GHz+. AMD world records using LN2 are still a few hundred MHz lower.
  • For daily use, Intel K-series CPUs tend to be more stable and reliable when overclocked within reasonable voltage/temperature limits. AMD’s more automated PBO is safer but offers less tuning headroom.

In summary, Intel CPUs allow more manual OC tuning and potentially higher clock ceilings but require more expertise. AMD’s approach maximizes stock performance safely but with less user control over clock speeds. Both can boost performance, but Intel tends to scale higher with dedicated cooling.

AMD vs Intel CPU Lithography

CPU Lithography – What it Means?

Lithography refers to the manufacturing process used to etch transistors onto silicon wafers that form CPU cores. Smaller lithography allows for greater transistor density and efficiency improvements over time.

Current State of Lithography

AMD is currently leading in lithography with their Ryzen 7000 CPUs using TSMC’s advanced 5nm process. This allows up to 20 billion transistors on each Ryzen 7 5800X3D CPU.

Intel’s 12th Gen CPUs use Intel 7 which is a 10nm process that is denser than 14nm but not as advanced as 5nm. Raptor Lake will also use 10nm Intel 7.

Benefits of Smaller Lithography

  • Higher clock speeds – Transistors can switch on/off faster at smaller sizes, allowing for multi-GHz turbo frequencies.
  • Lower power usage – Denser designs result in greater efficiency from less electricity lost to heat at the transistor level.
  • More cores – Smaller nodes open up space for additional processing cores in the same area footprint.
  • Increased IPC – Instruction-per-clock throughput rises as transistors can accomplish more work simultaneously.
  • Support for new standards – Examples include DDR5 memory and PCIe 5.0 which 5nm facilitates better than 10nm.

Thermal Implications

Decreased feature sizes also increase heat density risks that must be managed cautiously. Cooling and power delivery solutions need foresight regarding future node changes.


Intel and TSMC are aggressively pursuing 3nm and even smaller nodes within a few years. This will revolutionize performance, efficiency, and integration once again industry-wide.

In summary, lithography leadership provides significant competitive advantages in performance, efficiency, and integration that drive the entire industry forward at both the design and manufacturing levels.

Intel vs AMD CPU Architecture

AMD Zen Architecture:

AMD’s front end and back end have been optimized across multiple generations of Zen CPUs. Single-threaded performance has steadily improved since Zen 1 in 2017. The latest is Zen 3 with 8-15% IPC gains.

Intel Core Architecture:

Intel switches architectures more frequently. The most recent is the hybrid Performance-core/Efficient-core design of Alder Lake. Previous was the slight revision of Willow Cove cores in Rocket Lake.

IPC (Instructions per Clock):

AMD has closed the IPC gap significantly with Zen 3 now matching or exceeding Intel in certain workloads. Both continually optimize IPC through each new search.

Cores & Threads:

AMD focuses on maximizing core and thread counts for productivity. Intel balances threads with single-threaded performance optimizations.

Memory & Fabric Tech:

AMD excels at infinity fabric for fast inter-core communication. Intel focuses on maximizing memory throughput from integrated controllers.

process Node Leadership:

AMD currently leads with 5nm Zen 4 chips. Intel lags on 10nm but aims for process parity with 3nm Meteor Lake. Smaller nodes allow greater architectural gains.

Overall, both continue pushing architectural boundaries each generation. But AMD has shown strong gains in IPC and core counts to retake the leadership mantle from Intel in recent years. Continued optimizations on both sides ensure top performance.

Intel vs AMD CPU Drivers and Software

Both Intel and AMD provide software drivers and utilities to optimize system performance and access advanced CPU functionality. Let’s compare their driver and software support.

Chipset Drivers

  • Intel: Separate drivers for Intel 7 chipsets like Z690. Often bundled with Windows updates.
  • AMD: AM4 chipset & I/O drivers combined, updated regularly by AMD.

Overclocking Tools

  • Intel: Extreme Tuning Utility for Windows overclocking of CPUs and memory.
  • AMD: Ryzen Master software for precision boost overclocking controls.

Temperature Monitoring

  • Intel: Intel Extreme Tuning Utility software.
  • AMD: Third-party tools like HWiNFO or Ryzen Master.

Planning & Diagnostics

  • Intel: Intel Driver & Support Assistant scans hardware.
  • AMD: AMD Ryzen Master tool monitors components.

Operating System Optimization

  • Intel: No equivalent to AMD Readiness tool. Motherboard manufacturers may offer tuning utilities.
  • AMD: AMD Readiness checks OS is optimized for Ryzen and installed chipset drivers.

GPU Driver Suites

  • Intel: Integrated graphics uses the Intel driver suite. Discrete uses AMD or NVIDIA.
  • AMD: Recommends using AMD Adrenalin Software suite for best experience if also using AMD GPU.

Software Support Comparison:

Chipset DriversSeparate downloadBundled with OS
Overclocking ToolIntel XTURyzen Master
Temperature MonitoringXTU or 3rd partyRyzen Master or 3rd party
Diagnostic ToolXTURyzen Master
OS OptimizationNoneAMD Readiness
GPU Driver SuiteIntel or other vendorRecommended AMD or other

In summary, both provide robust tools but AMD offers a more streamlined OS optimization experience out of the box in many cases compared to Intel’s more fragmented approach.

AMD vs Intel CPU Security

AMD vs Intel CPU Security

Both AMD and Intel have made ongoing efforts to strengthen security protections in their CPUs against emerging threats. Let’s evaluate their approaches:

Isolated Execution Environments

  • AMD: Secure Encrypted Virtualization (SEV) isolates VMs from the hypervisor and host OS.
  • Intel: Software Guard Extensions (SGX) isolates app execution and memory through the use of enclaves.

Memory Protection

  • AMD: Memory Guard protects kernel against errant/malicious user mode access.
  • Intel: Control-flow Enforcement Technology (CET) defends against control-flow hijacking attacks.

Firmware Security

  • AMD: Secure Boot offers chain-of-trust at boot to prevent unauthorized code execution.
  • Intel: Boot Guard protects UEFI against malware during startup.

Access Restrictions

  • AMD: PSP security processor limits access and attestation for greater sandboxing.
  • Intel: CSE Management Engine enables remote updates and secures internal components.


  • AMD: Retpolines (retpoline compiler) and shadow stack defense against Spectre attacks.
  • Intel: CET, TSX Async Abort defense against Spectre, Meltdown, Foreshadow, etc vulnerabilities.

Software Security

  • AMD: Memory safety enhancements like Pointer Authentication help defend runtime memory.
  • Intel: Control-flow Enforcement Technology protects applications from control-flow hijacking.

Feature Comparison:

Security FeatureAMDIntel
Secure EnclavesSEVSGX
Kernel IsolationMemory GuardCET
Secure BootSupportedSupported
Internal RestrictionsPSPCME, CSE
Compiler DefensesRetpolinesCET & TSX Async Abort
Software ExploitsPointer AuthenticationCET

Both CPU manufacturers continue hardening their architectures each generation against evolving threats. No solution is 100% foolproof, requiring ongoing development.

Frequently Ask Questions

Why AMD is cheaper than Intel?

AMD’s competitive advantage comes from using smaller manufacturing processes than Intel, making its chips cheaper to produce. It also aims for higher core/thread counts which offer more value than Intel’s focus on fewer but faster cores.

Is the Ryzen 7 better than the Intel i7?  

It depends on the specific Ryzen 7 and Intel i7 models. In general, Ryzen 7 processors offer more cores/threads than similarly priced Intel i7 chips, making them better for multi-tasking and content creation. But Intel i7s tend to have a slight single-core performance lead for gaming.

Is AMD software better than Intel?

AMD provides more holistic software and drivers that are optimized out of the box on its Ryzen platforms. However, Intel software allows for more fine-tuned manual overclocking. Overall both provide solid tools, just packaged differently.

Which is better Intel or AMD?

Both Intel and AMD make excellent processors. Intel tends to have an edge in single-threaded tasks like gaming. But AMD provides better overall value with more cores. For most users, an AMD Ryzen 5000 CPU offers the best balance of performance and price. But needs vary, so checking benchmarks is important.

Is AMD Ryzen 7 better than the i5?

Generally yes. A Ryzen 7 has more cores/threads which gives better performance in tasks that can utilize multiple cores like rendering, streaming, etc. However, an i5 may be faster in single-core activities like gaming. 

Why AMD is cheaper than Intel? 

AMD’s chips are cheaper to produce as they use more advanced manufacturing processes. They also focus on price/performance rather than the absolute highest speeds. This allows AMD to undercut Intel’s pricing.

Should I buy Intel or Ryzen?  

For most users, a Ryzen is the better value choice with its multi-core performance. But check the types of tasks you do – Intel may be better for exclusive gaming. Look at individual CPU reviews too.

Which is faster AMD or Intel?

It depends on the specific CPUs and workloads. In multi-threaded tasks, AMD is usually faster. However, Intel CPUs often have an advantage in single-core workloads like games. Benchmarks are the best way to compare speeds.

Why Ryzen is better than Intel?

Ryzen CPUs offer more cores/threads for the price which enhances performance in tasks that utilize multiple cores. They also consume less power. However, Intel remains a strong choice for gamers focused only on maximum single-core speeds.

Is Nvidia better than AMD?  

For gaming graphics cards, Nvidia’s high-end RTX options have a clear performance lead over AMD Radeon counterparts in terms of ray tracing and features. But AMD provides better price/performance in the mid-range with more memory and a freesync display capability.

Final Thoughts

AMD has made tremendous strides in recent years by refocusing its efforts on high-performance desktop and workstation CPUs. They’ve narrowed the single-threaded performance gap with Intel while taking the multi-threaded crown. With competitive speeds at a better value, AMD Ryzen 5000 processors offer the most balanced choice for mainstream users.

Intel still maintains an advantage in select workloads that favor single-threaded speed like some games. But AMD is hot on their heels even in gaming. Intel processors also provide integrated graphics that AMD CPUs lack. Going forward, both companies pushing leading process technologies like 3nm and 5nm will drive further architectural gains. Competition in this space is providing massive benefits to consumers.

On the whole, both AMD and Intel produce excellent processors depending on specific needs and budgets. Gamers focused only on raw fps might opt for Intel, whereas creators want AMD’s extra cores. But for balanced users, it’s hard to deny the performance-per-dollar that AMD Ryzen 5000 delivers. Either brand can power a top-tier system, so buyers should consider their exact use cases above all. With continuous innovation, the consumer wins as AMD and Intel battle to outdo each other generation after generation.

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