Question $80 new budget CPU king?

GunsMadeAmericaFree

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I just saw that Micro Center now has dozens of the Ryzen 5 3600 cpu in stock at $80 each. They have about 30 in stock at our closest store. This brings back memories of the Ryzen 1600 they had in stock for $80 for about a year and a half, pre pandemic. That's what I initially built my system on. I later upgraded to a 3600, and then a 5500.

I'm thinking of building two new budget systems to replace some old intel based I5 4570 systems. At $80 each, these make a compelling case, and cpu performance would be about triple the current processors. (17,800 cpu marks for the 3600 at $80)

https://www.microcenter.com/product...oxed-processor-wraith-stealth-cooler-included

If they keep these in stock at this price for a year or more like they did with the 1600, do you think these will become the new "budget cpu king"?
 

moinmoin

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Can't find the thread where we discussed 3600 AF before (5600 sold as 3600) but this looks like a fire sale of original non-AF 3600 parts.
 
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Tech Junky

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Depends on the loads you want to put on them. AMD being cheap isn't the norm though compared to current options and/or new options coming soon. Way back in the day my first build was an AMD because I didn't feel like paying the Intel tax. How things have changed in 20+ years with AMD. Now it seems like there's an AMD tax to pay if you want to unlock some niche options and performance.

Seems that locally here as well they have 30+ in stock at that price as well. For me I would consider them for a router/firewall/nas/media server build on the cheap. With a 6/12 setup it's not a slouch by any means. There's just the AMD quirks to deal with you don't find in Intel at this point.

Looking into the future though and chiplet designs coming in the next year or so things are going to get interesting. More specifically I'm interested in seeing what Intel does with Arrow Lake moving to a more refined 2nm process. Being able to shift things around on the die to make performance leaps while using the existing socket should open some doors for improvements.
 

DrMrLordX

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i3-12100F @ $95 is a fierce competitor in that price range:


It's limited-time, normal price is $105, and that's still good competition for the 3600 depending on what you're doing. Zen2 is getting kind of old so I'd be slightly hesitant to recommend it. The issue for the 12100F might be platform cost depending on how you configure it.
 

Tech Junky

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I would aim for current as well but, in comparison for a non-gaming platform that just does grunt work 24/7 that AMD would fit the bill.

ADL has built in costs that don't compare to that older CPU. The trade offs though might come in the PCIE slots Gen3 or 4 / RAM though if it's using legacy tech the price goes up and might be an apples to apples when it comes to a complete build.
 

VirtualLarry

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On one hand, just considered alone, a 3600 for $80 is a great deal, and it's overall a great little "balanced" CPU, what with the "full monte" of 32MB L3 cache (16MB per CCX), as well as PcI-E 4.0 support.

But considering the bigger picture, there's the 5600 non-X for $130, and as mentioned, the 4C/8T 12100F for $95 that's mostly equal/better for gaming.

But AM4 does have a mobo price advantage here as well, so it's sort-of a toss-up. Maybe with the nod to AM4 if the mobo chosen allows an upgrade to the 5800X3D, if purchaser is into gaming.

If you have an older mobo on an existing system, with any AM4 CPU 2700X or lower, it's a no-brainer just to slam in one of these 3600 CPUs as an upgrade.
 

Tigerick

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Good price, but most likely new revision with new core coming...seems like AMD finally feel like they need to compete sub$100 CPU market with Intel Alderlake i3
 

VirtualLarry

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I'm thinking of building two new budget systems to replace some old intel based I5 4570 systems. At $80 each, these make a compelling case, and cpu performance would be about triple the current processors. (17,800 cpu marks for the 3600 at $80)

https://www.microcenter.com/product...oxed-processor-wraith-stealth-cooler-included

If they keep these in stock at this price for a year or more like they did with the 1600, do you think these will become the new "budget cpu king"?
I'd go for it. These CPUs are a "phenominal" value at $80, and unlikely to stay in stock at that price all year. Chances are, this is a "fire sale" moment.

I picked up three of them at Newegg when they hit $131 ea.

Edit: Microcenter is limited to one per household, in-store only.
 
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GunsMadeAmericaFree

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>>me I would consider them for a router/firewall/nas/media server build on

!! for a firewall! Wow, it wasn't that long ago that these were $160, and a lot of people considered them out of their price range for a performance system build, but ended up spending the $160 on it anyway.

Regarding the 12100F, cheapest I've found with a heatsink/fan new is about $105. It gives about 14,400 cpu marks of performance, compared to the 17,800 cpu marks of performance for the $80 Ryzen 5 3600. That's about 24% better performance, combined with a 23% lower price.
 

Tech Junky

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@GunsMadeAmericaFree

My current build with those functions is a 12700K just to be current with tech and play around with it but it's complete overkill just for networking alone. It would have line rate speeds though even at 10ge speeds or higher compared to much pricier options that are single minded.
 

DAPUNISHER

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i3-12100F @ $95 is a fierce competitor in that price range:


It's limited-time, normal price is $105, and that's still good competition for the 3600 depending on what you're doing. Zen2 is getting kind of old so I'd be slightly hesitant to recommend it. The issue for the 12100F might be platform cost depending on how you configure it.
Why? As Larry pointed out, it has PCIe 4.0 and 32MB L3, it's not a crippled part. It is better for most productivity than the 12100. You will get the same gaming experience from both. The differences with DDR4 are small enough that one never provides high refresh where the other does not. Frame pacing is fine with both. There are cheap boards with good feature sets that are inexpensive for both. Only place the 3600 has an edge is overclocking. But that still won't change that both are similar for gaming, or which is better for photoshop or Cinebench. Purely for those that like tweaking.

My stance is you can't go wrong with either for an ultra budget build. Channel on Youtube matched them up a couple of days ago. Not the greatest gaming tests, but enough to get the idea that both provide a similar experience. The 3600 $80 changes the whole dynamic too.

 
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SteveGrabowski

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>>me I would consider them for a router/firewall/nas/media server build on

!! for a firewall! Wow, it wasn't that long ago that these were $160, and a lot of people considered them out of their price range for a performance system build, but ended up spending the $160 on it anyway.

Regarding the 12100F, cheapest I've found with a heatsink/fan new is about $105. It gives about 14,400 cpu marks of performance, compared to the 17,800 cpu marks of performance for the $80 Ryzen 5 3600. That's about 24% better performance, combined with a 23% lower price.

12100F's claim to fame is the higher single core performance which is helpful in gaming right now since the new consoles have cpus powerful enough that you don't really have to go wide on them to get good gaming performance, as console cpus are basically Ryzen 7 3700X clocked at 3.5 GHz. I have my doubts on the 12100F having as much longevity as a 3600 though with two less cores. I'd personally jump on the Ryzen 5 5600 for $130 or Ryzen 7 5700X for $200 though if I was looking for a gaming cpu today, those prices are ridiculously good for chips that should age quite a bit better than the 12100F or 3600 for gaming.
 
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DAPUNISHER

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12100F's claim to fame is the higher single core performance which is helpful in gaming right now since the new consoles have cpus powerful enough that you don't really have to go wide on them to get good gaming performance, as console cpus are basically Ryzen 7 3700X clocked at 3.5 GHz. Not like last gen when the consoles had very low clocked octacores with absolutely pathetic single core performance.
For most games. However, Spiderman with high ray tracing can crunch a 12400 enough to not be able to stay over 60FPS all the time. As the Spiderman devs pointed out, PC ports of PS5 games are going to need the power and threads due to API overhead, asset decompression, and ability to increase settings like ray tracing above console levels. There will be more titles like that.

Being pedantic aside, with the GPUs it makes sense to pair these with right now, you are on point. No debating that. E.G. even Spiderman scales really well.
 

Mopetar

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Considering that when the supply chain went to hell Celeron and Athlon CPUs were considered cheap at $150, this is a great deal. The only downside to a 3600 is that you need a discrete GPU, so it's not necessarily a cheap build overall.
 

aigomorla

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I'm not convinced of it for gamers.
But for general performance, yes that's a good deal.

what are you not convinced about?
Its a 6 core 12thread cpu with 4.2ghz boost.
Sure its missing PCI-E 4.0 lanes, but your not going to miss it on a lower to mid grade GPU.
The same can also be said about the nVME. Your not going to miss that boost in speed on a PCI-E 3.0.
They take the X470 board, and the B450. No need for an expensive X570 or B550 because again you don't need those pci-e 4 lanes.
So paired with like a RX6600 or RX6600XT, you could build a pretty decent budget gaming PC that could play almost anything at 1080p at higher then 60fps, and 1440p on medium level graphics.
 

DAPUNISHER

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Considering that when the supply chain went to hell Celeron and Athlon CPUs were considered cheap at $150, this is a great deal. The only downside to a 3600 is that you need a discrete GPU, so it's not necessarily a cheap build overall.
Neither does the 12100f, and the 12100 is $130.
 
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gdansk

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what are you not convinced about?
Its a 6 core 12thread cpu with 4.2ghz boost.
Sure its missing PCI-E 4.0 lanes, but your not going to miss it on a lower to mid grade GPU.
The same can also be said about the nVME. Your not going to miss that boost in speed on a PCI-E 3.0.
They take the X470 board, and the B450. No need for an expensive X570 or B550 because again you don't need those pci-e 4 lanes.
So paired with like a RX6600 or RX6600XT, you could build a pretty decent budget gaming PC that could play almost anything at 1080p at higher then 60fps, and 1440p on medium level graphics.
I am convinced a gamer would be better served by buying one less game and getting a slightly better CPU. :)
A 5600 is $50 more right now. Or the 12100F.
 

DAPUNISHER

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I am convinced a gamer would be better served by buying one less game and getting a slightly better CPU. :)
A 5600 is $50 more right now. Or the 12100F.
12100F has nothing on it, and is worse for most multitasking. $50 is a lot in the ultra budget space. These systems are usually for F2P games, free games Epic and Amazon throw at you, and cheap Indy and Steam titles. Not current AAA stuff.
 

SteveGrabowski

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For most games. However, Spiderman with high ray tracing can crunch a 12400 enough to not be able to stay over 60FPS all the time. As the Spiderman devs pointed out, PC ports of PS5 games are going to need the power and threads due to API overhead, asset decompression, and ability to increase settings like ray tracing above console levels. There will be more titles like that.

Being pedantic aside, with the GPUs it makes sense to pair these with right now, you are on point. No debating that. E.G. even Spiderman scales really well.

Yeah Spiderman really loves the cache of the 5600x vs the higher single core of the 12400F with high RT turned on, though it's the complete opposite without RT, at least according to Hardware Unboxed's benchmarks. I don't expect I'll be using a gpu strong enough to want to turn on much in the way of RT though until the very end of the console generation at the earliest, since RX 6700 XT is the absolute highest I'll go on gpu given the prices (and that's only if it gets a nice price drop this year) and no way I'd use it less than 3-4 years unless it dies on me.
 

ondma

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For most games. However, Spiderman with high ray tracing can crunch a 12400 enough to not be able to stay over 60FPS all the time. As the Spiderman devs pointed out, PC ports of PS5 games are going to need the power and threads due to API overhead, asset decompression, and ability to increase settings like ray tracing above console levels. There will be more titles like that.

Being pedantic aside, with the GPUs it makes sense to pair these with right now, you are on point. No debating that. E.G. even Spiderman scales really well.
Maybe, but anyone looking for a 100.00 cpu is most likely not going to have the money for a gpu capable of good performance in ray tracing. As someone else said, for general use or productivity purposes, that is a great deal. I would not go with a 2 gen old Ryzen for gaming though, unless you are just dropping it into an existing motherboard.
 
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aigomorla

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@aigomorla

The 3600 has 24 PCIe 4.0 lanes. Combined with a budget B550, you can leverage GPU and storage.

oh i thought the pic-e lanes came on the 5000 series.... oops...
Then that makes it even better, except the fact the B550 is still one hell of an expensive board.
Well maybe they dropped in price, but definitely a still more expensive then a B450 or even a X470 for that matter.

Maybe, but anyone looking for a 100.00 cpu is most likely not going to have the money for a gpu capable of good performance in ray tracing.

So you think they are going to use IGP?
Do you know how bad gaming is on a IGP and how limited you are to titles, and you can even almost forget 1440p with anything but low settings.

A RX 6600 is running for 229.

Id think any smart gamer would at least allocate some of his/her budget on a dedicated card.
 

DAPUNISHER

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Maybe, but anyone looking for a 100.00 cpu is most likely not going to have the money for a gpu capable of good performance in ray tracing.
Yeah man, I acknowledged that in the last sentence of the quoted reply.

And v. the 12100f it is on par. So I will take it you consider 12th gen 4 cores dead too. ;)
 

aigomorla

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I am a avid Intel fan. Dont get me wrong, but they really wrecked themselves these past years.
I still am running mostly Intel Enterprise Grade gear for server stuff at my office and home.
(Well my home server is getting replaced soon to EYPC tho.)

But then AMD floors the price on that chip that much, its pretty much putting out intel on the pasture to get slaughtered.
Games these days mostly utilize more then 4 cores. The Doom remake has shown even to utilize 32 core Threadripper.

I would never recommend even a budget gamer to use 4 cores... were back in the old days when we warned people not to use dual cores and get quad cores for gaming.

Games are only going to get more complex, and more multithreaded.
The more faster cores you have the better until you hit GPU bottleneck, which is where you'll always be.
But with a RX 6600, you'll hit that gpu bottleneck a LOT later then a IGP will.

So nothing can convince me a 3600 + RX6600 can be dethrowned from a budget build as of this time right now, unless you can show me something better cheaper, which you'll be very hard pressed.