AMD's eagerly anticipated Ryzen 5 processors have dropped and are available to buy around the world right. They range in price from $169 for the low-end Ryzen 5 1400, up to $249 for the Ryzen 5 1600X. Their chief competitors from Intel are its Kaby Lake Core i5-7000 series CPUs, which AMD is hoping to under on price and beat in terms of performance.

Early reviews are out, largely for the $189 Ryzen 5 1500X and the $249 Ryzen 5 1600X, so we've compiled some gaming benchmark scores to see just how these stack up to their Intel variants.

Ryzen 5 v Intel Kaby Lake Price Guide

  • Ryzen 5 1600X - $249
  • Ryzen 5 1500X - $189
  • Intel Core i5-7600 - $229
  • Intel Core i5-7500 - $199
  • Intel Core i5-7400 - $182

The standout threat here from AMD seems to be the Ryzen 5 1600X, which packs a hefty six cores with simultaneous multihreading, all from a $250 CPU. This is quite an offering, and on paper its capable of outgunning Intel's CPUs. Let's see how they fare in these 1080p gaming benchmarks.

1080p Civ 6 GTA 5 Ghost Recon Wildlands Ashes of the Singularity Battlefield 1 Hitman
Ryzen 5 1600X 64 88 89 68 146 98
Ryzen 5 1500X 59 82 89 66 122 91
Intel Core i5-7600 48 85 95 72 155 95
Intel Core i5-7500 46 83 93 59 128 88
Intel Core i5-7400 42 76  N/A N/A N/A N/A

For the most part you can see these processors are trading blows. In games which favour fewer cores and higher clock speeds, Intel's come out on top, while games optimized for multi-threading begin to hand the advantage back to AMD. The good news on AMD's part is that more than 300 developers have signed up to optimize for Ryzen hardware, and we've seen these updates come thick and fast for Ryzen 7 already. In the instance of Ashes of the Singularity, this optimization patch boosted performance by as much as 30%. That's not necessarily going to be the case here once more for Ryzen 5, but we should still some noticeable gains going forward as devs wrap their heads around it.

You'll notice as well that performance is extremely similar between the $189 Ryzen 5 1500X and the $199 Intel Core i5-7500. The only large gulf that forms is in the case of Civilization VI, but it'll be interesting to see whether similar gaps pan out as games are patched in the future.

We haven't got our hands on a Ryzen 5 for testing here just yet, but the results look to be promising. AMD isn't exactly blowing Intel away in terms of performance, but it certainly providing some stern competition. At the very least it's no longer a simple choice to decide which CPU manufacturer to opt for. Both are bringing strong processors to the table with some competitive pricing, although momentum is swinging AMD's way if it can continue to patch the 'Ryzen gap' in terms of gaming performance.

Looking upwards from this set of processors, the value proposition only declines. Intel's higher-end CPUs aren't offering the same bang for your buck as this lot, and CPUs like the $339 Intel Core i7-7700K are starting to stick out like a sore thumb against the likes of Ryzen 7 1700.

So Ryzen 5 isn't perhaps the performance game changer we'd hope, but it's definitely enough to upset Intel's apple cart, forcing a radical overhaul of CPU pricing structure. For end users, in particular PC gamers, this can only be good, with stiff competition driving down prices.

What do you make of the initial Ryzen 5 benchmarks? Anyone planning to build a new system around one of these? Let us know!