Intel Core i5-8400 (B360) vs. AMD Ryzen 5 1600 (B350)

The Ryzen 5 1600 was launched about a year ago with 6 cores and 12 threads. He was really impressive considering his price of $ 220. Then AMD officially cut prices for their entire Ryzen lineup last month and this caused the 1600 to drop to ~ $ 190.

The reason is simple: 2nd generation Ryzen processors will be available very soon, and manufacturers are aware of this. In order to promote the sale of 1st generation parts, the discount campaign started. At this point, however, we recommend that you wait a few weeks before making CPU purchases and then reevaluate your options.

Why should you deal with this comparison at all? Well, for a couple of reasons. Before the incoming 2nd generation Ryzen parts arrive, we can see how AMD and Intel are currently working with the latest Windows updates, BIOS updates, driver updates and new motherboards. This gives us a current reference point for the new CPUs.

A big part of Ryzen's appeal is the value aspect. You can throw the Ryzen 5 1600 on a relatively inexpensive motherboard, overclock the snot and you're gone. In the meantime, until about a week ago, the Core i5-8400 was stuck on the Z370 platform, a platform that is largely unusable, so the additional price of the motherboard affects its value.

Now we have H310, B360, and H370 motherboards that help shave a bit from the top. So this changes the value aspect of the cheaper Coffee Lake CPUs and makes them a little more attractive for budget buyers.

Therefore, for this test we will compare the Ryzen 5 1600 with DDR4-3200 memory on the MSI B350M mortar in its standard configuration as well as a 4 GHz overclocking with a simple tower-style air cooler. Then the Core i5-8400 was tested on two motherboards, one of which is MSI's cheapest B360 motherboard, the B360M PRO-VD. We use DDR4-2666 memory and the box cooler on this inexpensive B360 card. In addition, the Core i5 processor was tested on the MSI Z370 PC Pro with DDR4-3200 memory and a simple tower-style air cooler.

That covers almost all the basics. Well, and no, MCE wasn't enabled for any of the Core i5-8400 tests, mainly because you can't enable this feature on locked Intel CPUs on a 300 series motherboard.


All right, the starting shot for the parade with the blue bar chart is the memory bandwidth test by SiSoftware Sandra. This is about sustained read / write performance in gigabytes per second. The Core i5-8400 on the B360 motherboard is limited to just under 27 GB / s as maximum memory support for this DDR4-2666 chipset.

However, using a Z370 card with DDR4-3200 memory increased throughput by 22% to 32.7 GB / s. Impressive stuff, but that still got it behind the Ryzen 5 1600, which was good for around 39 GB / s with DDR4-3200 memory, both in stock and overclocked.

Before we look at real-world applications, look at the Cinebench R15 results here. At least keep in mind that these are not the absolute best results. These results are based on an average of half a dozen consecutive runs. As expected, this shows that Intel offers higher single-core performance, while Ryzen's many threads offer superior multithreaded performance thanks to the use of SMT.

The V-Ray benchmark shows Ryzen's outstanding multithreaded performance. Instead of a score like Cinebench, we consider the render time, measured in seconds. So lower is better.

Here we see that the Ryzen 5 1600 in stock was 16% faster than the 8400 on the B360 board and 13% faster than the Z370 configuration. Overclocking the 1600 improved performance by 16%, and now the AMD CPU is at least 31% faster than the Core i5-8400.

When it comes to video editing, Intel's advantage is the Core i5 processor's superior IPC and often higher clock speeds, which are achieved in these light thread editing tasks. Ryzen isn't exactly "slow" in comparison, but it's not the slam dunk case for AMD that we saw in the previous tests. More on editing performance when we come to Premiere Pro later in the video.

If we turn to the physics of games, we see here that a game that is well designed to take advantage of Ryzen's many threads would allow the R5 1600 to dominate the 8400 even if it is still on Stock is. Of course, this is not the case in 99% of the games. In fact, Ashes of the Singularity is still one of the few examples of a well-designed game that can use many topics.

Before we get into games, however, we need to review a few more productivity benchmarks. Here we see how these CPUs can be compared in Corona. AMD's Ryzen 5 1600 made a big profit in this benchmark and achieved rendering time 27% faster than the Core i5-8400. This margin increases to 30% as soon as the 1600 is overclocked and the 8400 is thrown on a Z370 board.

Lower is better for the Blender test as we measure again the time it takes to finish rendering. The Ryzen 5 1600 is ready to use and outperforms the 8400 by 6% even if it uses higher speed memory on a Z370 card. Overclocking the Ryzen processor reduced the render time by 13% and made it significantly superior in this test.

At HandBrake, the Core i5-8400 was faster than the R5 1600, albeit with a small lead. Nevertheless, we see an 8% increase in performance from 9.3 to 10 fps. However, as soon as we overclock, the 1600's performance increases by 14%, and that's enough to just displace the 8400 in conjunction with high frequency memory on a Z370 card.

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