AMD Ryzen 5 3600 Evaluation: Greatest All-Spherical Worth CPU

The Ryzen 5 3600 is the successor to our favorite CPU with the best price-performance ratio and AMD's new 6-core 12-thread processor for $ 200. The chip clocks between 3.6 GHz and 4.2 GHz, has a 32 MB L3 cache and a 65 watt TDP. The package includes the Wraith stealth cooler and an MSRP, which corresponds to the price at which the R5 2600 was launched.

The direct competition for the R5 3600 should come from the Intel Core i5-9600, which is listed for $ 213. However, we don't have this part on hand and it doesn't seem to be for sale either, so the more expensive 9600K is needed. It costs $ 255 and doesn't include a box cooler. So it's not exactly what we wanted, but it will be interesting to see how they stack up in terms of raw performance.

To test the new Ryzen processor, we used the MSI X570 Creation, which is configured with the DDR4-3200 CL14 memory and the standard cooler. The 8th and 9th generation Intel Core processors were tested on the Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Ultra with the same RAM modules, but cooled with the Corsair H115i RGB Platinum AIO liquid cooler. Intel CPUs are not limited to TDP, so we show the best scenario for ready-to-use performance. However, we will consider the cost of an aftermarket cooler for them when we do our cost analysis at the end of the review. Our graphics card of choice was the MSI Trio GeForce RTX 2080 Ti.

For the sake of simplicity, we have removed a number of more expensive high-end CPUs from our performance diagrams, e.g. B. R9 3900X, 9700K, 9900K, Threadripper 2920X and Core i9-7900X, since they are not relevant for a $ 200 CPU. However, with our Ryzen 3900X and 3700X test, you can easily compare the results released today.


We start with the multi-core test of the Cinebench R20 and are immediately impressed with the performance of the R5 3600. Here it suited the Ryzen 7 1800X with a little more than 3600 points. It was 4% faster than the 8700K, almost 20% faster than the 2600X and 28% faster than the model it replaces, the R5 2600.

The new 3600 is 45% faster than the R5 1600. This is a crazy leap. In 2 years, AMD has increased performance by almost 50% at a price of $ 200.

The single core performance is equally impressive: here the 3600 was only 4% slower than the 3700X, which meant that it could keep up with the Core i5-9600K and only surpass the 8700K.

The Win5AR looks very good at the R5 3600 and is only 4% below the 8700K. It was 45% faster than the Core i7-7700K and the Ryzen 7 2700X.

When testing with 7-Zip, we see that the R5 3600 beats the 2700X. The compression performance is great and offers 14% more power than the 8700K. In the decompression test, it fell behind the 8-core Ryzen processors, but was still 16% faster than the 8700K.

For aspiring content creators, the Ryzen 5 3600 is a stroke of luck. For just $ 200, he did our 4K workload 4% faster than the 8700K. While this is anything but a significant margin, keep in mind that the 8700K is a $ 360 processor.

Compared to the R5 2600, it was 17% faster and a whopping 32% faster than the R5 1600 in V-Ray. The 3600 is in the latest version of the V-Ray benchmark with 6% less than the 8700K.

AMD's new 6-core CPU was slightly behind the 8700K in the Corona benchmark, but given the price difference, this remains a solid result for the R5 3600.

The mainstream 3600 CPU managed to pass the Blender test, reach the 8700K, and easily beat the previous generation Ryzen equivalents and the 9600K, which is at the bottom of the table.

power consumption

Perhaps more impressive are the overall system consumption values ​​that we recorded when running the Blender benchmark. As you can see, the R5 3600 consumed the same power as the quad-core i7-7700K and only slightly more than the i5-9600K.

Now you may think that using slightly more power than the 9600K is not as impressive, but keep in mind that the 3600 was almost 40% faster than the Core i5 processor in this test. So it's very impressive in terms of energy efficiency.

Gaming benchmarks

Our first game test is Assassin's Creed: Odyssey, where the R5 3600 slightly outperformed the 8700K's 1% low score, despite being a few frames slower on average. Still, what we see here can be described as the 8700K-like performance of the new Ryzen 5 3600.

Similar to the test of the R9 3900X and 3700X, the 3rd generation Ryzen processors slide a little at 1440p in this title, and this also applies to the R5 3600. Here it is 6% slower than the 8700K, no massive margin But normally you would expect things to close around 1440p.

Battlefield V's results are somewhat disappointing, although I must remember that the 3600 does not compete with the 8700K. Its primary goal should be the 9600K, and here it improves low performance by 1% by 23%.

Even at 1440p, the 3600's 1% low performance was 18% higher, although the 9600K appears faster when looking at the average frame rate, and this allowed for a smoother and more consistent gaming experience.

Next we have Shadow of the Tomb Raider and here the 3600 matched the 9600K, which is a good result since the 9600K costs more. The 1440p results were similar, the 9600K crept forward a few frames, but overall performance was competitive and the 3600's 1% low performance was a good deal faster than all 2nd generation Ryzen parts.

Continue with Division 2. With 1080p, the R5 3600 displaced the 9600K and made a significant step forward not only compared to the 2600X, but also to the 2700X. Interestingly, this time the Ryzen 3600 could exceed the 9600K at 1440p, considering the 1% low power. The R5 3600 was a good deal faster than the 2700X and the 8700K here as well, since it matched the 8-core 3700X.

As we are used to from Ryzen, the performance in Far Cry New Dawn wasn't great compared to the competing Intel CPUs, but the overall gameplay was still smooth. Even at 1440p, the R5 3600 is still significantly below the 9600K, especially when you consider the 1% lows.

World War II performance was also low compared to Intel CPUs, but at well over 100 fps, this probably doesn't matter much in this case. The Ryzen CPUs cause a performance bottleneck in this title, and we see that 1440p is an upper limit of 135 fps, which is very strange given the Intel CPUs with up to 150 fps.

The Ryzen 5 3600 was solid in rage 2 with an average of 160 fps, which meant it wasn't much slower than the 9600K. In addition, the R5 3600 was fast enough to find the limits of the RTX 2080 Ti at 1440p, although this was true for almost all CPUs tested.

When testing with Hitman 2, we found that the R5 3600 was 7% slower than the i5-9600K at the average frame rate. This is not a great title for Ryzen CPUs.

We find similar results at 1440p, although here the 3600 corresponds to the 1% low power of the 9600K.

At the end of the gaming benchmarks we got Total War: Three Kingdoms and here the R5 3600 offered a stronger 1% lower performance than the 9600K with a slightly lower average frame rate. However, as soon as we jump to 1440p with the RTX 2080 Ti, the power ranges between 9600K and 3600 are neutralized.


As with the 3700X and 3900X, the Ryzen R5 3600 has very little overclocking scope. The best thing we could do with an all-in-one liquid cooler was a 4.2 GHz all-core overclock. Again, it is best to activate the PBO + AutoOC function in the Ryzen Master software. This increased the Cinebench R20 multi-core score by only 4%.

Here we see that PBO + AutoOC improved the single core score by 1.6%. I suspect most don't care about overclocking because the extra warmth isn't really worth it. Speaking of which, let's look at the heat output of the included Wraith Stealth box cooler.


With the Wraith Stealth installed, the R5 3600 maintained an out-of-the-box 4 GHz clock speed during our 1-hour blender stress test. This is an extreme stress test, so it's pretty good to have a peak of only 80 degrees, especially since it was practically noiseless.

You can activate PBO with the box cooler, but it doesn't do much as you are already approaching the thermal limit. Basically, we gained 25 MHz for a temperature rise of 4 degrees. Of course, we do not recommend using PBO with the box cooler.

With a decent cooler, temperatures dropped significantly. You don't need anything as extreme as the Corsair Hydro H115i, but we used this for the 3700X and wanted a direct comparison. However, with the AIO liquid cooler, storage temperatures dropped to 62 degrees and now the 3600 ran at 4125 MHz as standard, which is an automatic overclocking of 3%. Then we got another 85 MHz with the PBO activated and this raised the load temperature to 68 degrees, which is still very cool.

Cost per frame analysis

For the cost per frame data, we add the cost of a cooler to Intel systems. We have decided that a budget of $ 40 is very reasonable for the Cooler Master Hyper 212 Black Edition. With these adjustments, the Core i5-9600K costs a total of $ 295. That means the cost per frame is $ 2.18, which equates it to the Ryzen 7 2700X.

The Ryzen 5 3600 is significantly cheaper at just $ 1.53 per frame because it offers a similar level of performance, but costs almost $ 100 less. This makes the R5 3600 a cheaper price than the 2600X at a current price of $ 195, although it is 18% more expensive than the Vanilla R5 2600. Despite the efficiency improvement and the absolutely tremendous increase in productivity performance, we believe that this is the Case will be easy to justify the small price premium.

Wrap up

As predicted, the Ryzen 5 3600 offers tremendous value. Since it uses very little power, it also works on the simplest B350 motherboard, provided that it receives the required BIOS update. Alternatively, for brand new builds, you can buy our favorite B450 board, the MSI Tomahawk, and get a killer combo for over $ 300. Basically what you pay for the 9600K with a mid-range cooler.

Then you will have numerous options in the future: Ryzen 7 3700X, Ryzen 9 3900X or maybe even a 16-Core 3950X who knows which second-hand offers for these parts will be available in a few years. For this reason, we have been big supporters of AMD's AM4 platform. Those who bought an affordable B350 motherboard two years ago and say, for example, the Ryzen 5 1600, now have the option to use the R5 3600 for up to 35% performance improvement in games and at least 45% performance improvement. as we saw in WinRAR, mean an increase of over 100%.

But as we alluded to earlier, the R5 3600 seems to be the best option even for those who are building a new PC from scratch. It smoked the Core i5-9600K in every single application benchmark we ran, and in the worst case, it matches the single-core performance. You get 12 threads as opposed to only 6, so it will undoubtedly age better, but this time you don't have to roll for Ryzen's longevity since it's faster today.

The Intel Core i5 was a bit faster in some of the games we tested, but the R5 3600 was miles faster where you'll notice. So this is pretty dry unless Intel decides to cut prices sharply.

We later plan to test 3rd generation Ryzen with some B350 motherboards to see how well these new processors work on entry-level boards.

Purchasing links:
  • AMD Ryzen 5 3600 on Amazon, Google Express
  • AMD Ryzen 5 3600X on Amazon, Google Express
  • AMD Ryzen 5 2600X on Amazon, Google Express
  • AMD Ryzen 7 3700X on Amazon, Google Express
  • AMD Ryzen 9 3900X on Amazon, Google Express
  • Intel Core i5-9600K at Amazon, Google Express
  • Intel Core i5-9400F at Amazon, Google Express
  • GeForce RTX 2070 Super on Amazon, Google Express
  • GeForce RTX 2060 Super on Amazon, Google Express
  • GeForce GTX 1660 Ti on Amazon, Google Express

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