It took a while, but AMD's first desktop processor with 3D V-Cache is finally on the horizon. AMD will release the eight-core Ryzen 7 5800X3D on April 20th for $449. That's the same price as the older 5800X cost when new, but the company is clearly betting that the much larger combined cache (100MB versus 36MB) will help justify the outlay. AMD claimed in January that the 5800 X3D could outperform both the Ryzen 9 5900X and Intel's Core i9 12800K in 1080p gaming, although it's safe to say real-world results might vary.
There are also some decidedly more affordable CPUs if you're more interested in value for money than raw speed. AMD has introduced six budget Ryzen chips, including three Zen 3 models. The six-core Ryzen 5 5500 only supports up to PCIe Gen 3, a 4.2GHz boost clock and 19MB of cache, but at $159 (cooler included) should be the most accessible Zen 3 part to date. Step up to the $199 Ryzen 5 5600 and you'll get PCIe Gen 4 support, a 4.4GHz boost clock and 35MB of cache. The $299 Ryzen 7 5700X, meanwhile, is built for the sweet spot with eight cores, a 4.6GHz boost and 36MB of cache, although you'll have to bring your own cooler.
Those happy to make do with Zen 2 have lower-priced options. The four-core Ryzen 3 4100 peaks at 4GHz with 6MB of cache for $99 with cooler, while the $129 Ryzen 5 4500 jumps to six cores, a 4.1GHz boost and 11MB of cache. Cost-conscious gamers can buy a $154 Ryzen 5 4600G with Vega-class Radeon graphics, a 4.2GHz peak clock and 11MB of cache.
All six lower-cost CPUs should be available starting April 4th. We wouldn't be surprised if pricing climbs higher for the Ryzen 7 5800X3D given ongoing chip shortages, but they represent solid values at their official stickers. They might also do the trick if you lean AMD and can't wait until Zen 4-based hardware arrives late this year.