AMD’s processors are the best for gaming at a specified budget constraint. Unlike other CPU manufacturers, AMD works side by side on its several architecturally distinct CPUs to make them enticing and efficient enough for modern gaming use.
Considering AMD’s willingness to develop two or more series in parallel with their latest processing modules, the Ryzen 5000 series of processors has an excellent ensemble of CPUs that we personally adore due to their highly regarded value and an unmatched price-to-performance ratio. We will stick to one of their most affordable CPUs for today’s discussion, the Ryzen 5 5500.
The Ryzen 5 5500 is an excellent entry-level processor with mid-range attributes that is made to cater to a wide consumer base. Its 6 cores/12 thread structure and AMD’s highly efficient and very robust Zen 3 architecture allow you to benefit from contemporary performance. Not only that, but this CPU has an awesome nominal power consumption of only 65 Watts, and just like any other AMD chip, it can be overclocked with the proper complementary hardware.
However, with all this understood, one question remains: is the Ryzen 5 5500 good for gaming?
Yes! The short answer is the AMD Ryzen 5 5500 is good for gaming, but only when you are low on budget. If you can spend some more bucks, you can have an even better AMD processor that can run the latest titles without any problem.
Considering its 6-core structure with a consistently power-efficient architectural design and clock speeds of up to 4.2 GHz, the Ryzen 5 5500 is a pretty good gaming processor with the potential to work with an excellent range of graphics cards. It facilitates you to enjoy a wide range of games regardless of whether they are esports titles or triple-AAA single-player.
Our testing showed that it achieved more than 100 frames per second in some of the most demanding games of 2023. Paired with the RX 6950XT, this CPU can produce excellent framerates of 94 average fps in games like Watchdogs: legion at 1080p and 93 fps at 1440p.
Moreover, it constantly keeps up with its more powerful sibling, the Ryzen 5 5600, with only about 5 -10% variation. Compared to the older gen Ryzen 3600, it goes toe-to-toe with it, showing the equivalent amount of efficacy and superiority of its more novel architecture.
Why Should you consider Ryzen 5 5500?
There is a whole lot to consider in this CPU.
Firstly, It is budget-friendly, and the CPU is among the most affordable gaming processors relevant for 2024. It’s currently priced at around 99$, plus you get a free cooler. Although this cooler might not be as good as some 3rd party coolers, this chip doesn’t run too hot, meaning you can get away with using this cooler pretty easily without any severe cases of thermal throttling.
Furthermore, it performs decently at medium to high settings for most current games. With its sweet spot of boosted clock speed, this CPU will let you run your dream games with utter finesse.
The Chip is relatively modest with its peak temperatures. With only a TDP of 65 Watts, this CPU produces only a fraction of heat compared to some high-end chips, which require either a girthy Air cooler or an AIO cooling system.
Lastly, The Ryzen 5 5500 only requires around 65W of power. This allows you to be creative with your choice of a power supply, which mainly depends on your choice of GPU.
Why Should you not consider Ryzen 5 5500?
However, there are some caveats with choosing the Ryzen 5 5500, as it is a budget processor with some natural compromises in compatibility and longevity departments.
First, the Ryzen 5 5500 Only has six cores and 12 threads. These number of cores and threads aren’t few by any means, and you can get some remarkable and surprising performance results from them. But with gaming as our focus, these chips won’t cut it for all games. Due to some game developers pushing for peak graphical fidelity and large game files, the Ryzen 5 5500 will struggle to furnish a smooth gaming experience for future demanding titles.
Secondly, this processor only supports PCIe 3.0 connectivity, so you won’t be able to experience or utilize PCIe 4.0 or PCIe 5.0-compatible hardware. For example, modern SSDs, GPUs, WiFi adapters, etc., work with PCIe 4.0 or 5.0 support, which allows them to reach higher data transfer speeds that are generationally and exponentially better. With this processor, however, you will be limited to Gen 3 PCIe speeds, and it is possible that some hardware might not work correctly.
Finally, It has lower clock speeds compared to high-end Ryzen chips. With clock speed being the most essential factor about the CPU for gaming, this aspect holds some substantial weight.
Specific Game performance
The Ryzen 5 5500 runs most games exceptionally well, with some exceptions. The CPU might suffer from the lack of support from newer hardware and standards, but with what it can be paired with, this CPU allows you to enjoy some neat-looking games.
For example, you won’t be disappointed if you play esports titles like CS2, Fortnite, Valorant, League of Legends, etc. In CS2, this CPU, paired with a graphics card like RTX 3060 or RX 6600XT, will provide you more than 150 fps on average for 1080p resolution and high graphics. Similar results can be witnessed in games like Valorant, LOL, and DOTA 2.
Contemporary triple-A titles are another side where this processor yields decent framerates with similar GPUs. For example, games like Forza Horizon 5, Read Dead Redemption 2, and Elden Rings easily garner more than 60-70 frames on average for 1080p resolution and the highest in-game graphics settings.
Nevertheless, if you like to revisit older games like Witcher 3, GTA V, Crysis Series, Wolfenstein 2014/2017, etc., then you can also rely on this CPU as it will be able to perform pretty nicely with more than 80 – 100 frames on highest graphics settings.
There are specific points to consider that will give you some clarity on whether or not the Ryzen 5 5500 is the right CPU for you.
The first thing is your budget. If you are a casual gamer who wants to enjoy playing games without spending too much time and money on a high-end build, then the Ryzen 5 5500 would be an excellent processor. It excels in giving you the most performance for a fraction of the price of high-tier chips.
Moreover, it serves well for both competitive and casual games, as we previously explored its performance. It generates commendable framerates with not much left to desire regarding esports titles. However, it will struggle to run modern single-player games at higher resolutions and ultra graphics settings, as it can only efficiently support lower mid-tier GPUs.
Speaking of resolution and graphics, this processor is an impeccable choice for building an entry-level gaming PC that can run most games at 1080p. At this resolution, you can also experiment with graphics settings, and, indeed, most games will easily play at high to ultra-in-game settings.
However, there is limited potential for future upgrades. It only supports PCIe 3.0 connectivity, which affects its longevity, and using modern SSDs and GPUs with this CPU will only limit their bandwidths.
Luckily, if you aren’t too fond of the Ryzen 5 5500 CPU chip, there are some excellent alternatives to consider.
The best alternative for the Ryzen 5500 is the Ryzen 5600 or 5600x chip. Although these chips are slightly more power-consuming and run comparatively hotter, they are great for gaming. Their benchmark performances are superior, offering better clock speeds, more robustness, and PCIe 4.0 support, enabling you to pair them with novel hardware. However, they are a tiny bit more costly.
In conclusion, the Ryzen 5 5500 is an outstanding entry-level and affordable CPU chip with obvious compromises. Whether it’s good for gaming depends on personal budget and needs. Regarding gaming, this CPU will furnish good framerates for most games at 1080p resolution.
It is still a good budget choice for gaming builds with the potential to run most games at medium to high settings. However, your personal preferences may vary, so we have also mentioned some other alternatives you can opt for instead of this CPU.
Nevertheless, if you are willing to try this chip, consider factors like future upgradeability and limited efficacy to run demanding games.