AMD or Intel, which one is better? Among tech enthusiasts, this has been now the issue for decades. The solution to this isn’t concrete like “one size fits all”, as both brands carry different sets of specialties. AMD processors due to their greater number of cores and threads are observed to be optimal for creative professionals while Intel because of providing the best frequencies are observed to be ideal for professional gamers. Still, AMD is better for creative pros, and Intel for gamers isn’t this straightforward because of recent improvements on both sides.
Keeping all this in perspective, choosing a CPU while building your PC is the most crucial part. For this purpose, we are providing a detailed comparison of Intel and AMD processors to clear your mind.
Intel Vs AMD History
AMD and Intel are the two most prominent brands offering the highest quality processors. There can be no brand to beat these two while choosing the best CPU either for gaming or for workstations. AMD has evolved exceptionally from a brand providing comparatively low-end CPUs with a greater price to a brand that is now offering the highest quality Ryzen CPUs. AMD processors are faster in single-core performance and multithreading than Intel CPUs, stays perfectly stable and cool whenever introduced to powerful tasks. Although Intel is striving hard to beat AMD with its latest generation processors, Intel’s 10th gen CPU is still far behind Zen 3 architecture AMD’s Ryzen 5000 processor.
Term Intel means “Integrated Electronics” – formed by Robert Boyce in July 1968 – is an American tech multinational company based in Santa Clara (California, Silicon Valley). Robert Royce is also the developer of the first-ever x86 bit processor. Intel initially came up with memory chips, 1101 was the 1st metal-oxide semiconductor that didn’t perform well in the market but its sibling, 1103 one kilobit (DRAM) Dynamic random access memory was a successful chip with the ability to store a notable amount of information. At that time, DRAM because of its affordable price tags and low power consumption became the center of interest for many.
Intel in 1972 stepped up into the watchmaking market by purchasing Micromax. But with zero consumer understanding, Intel failed to manage things and sold Micromax with a loss of $15 million. In 1974, Intel covered 83% of the DRAM chip market but with many other companies in competition, their market share drastically dipped to 1.3% in 1984. At that time, Intel decided to shift from DRAM to the microprocessors business. 8008, an 8-bit central processing unit was brought to market in 1972. 8008 was followed by 8080 in 1974, 10 times faster than the previous one. Later on, in 1978 the company came up with its first-ever 16-bit microprocessor (8086).
In 1981, a computer manufacturing firm IBM (International Business Machine) took Intel’s 8088 as the first 16-bit microprocessor. Among many others Intel chips, 80386 was the most prominent 32-bit microprocessor released in 1958. Intel in 1993 left its number-oriented naming convention with “Pentium”, along with 3.1 million transistors and noticeably faster performance, Pentium was the first chip to endorse superscalar or parallel processing. Intel’s core business strategy was to bring newer chips with more transistors and enhanced performance to compel buyers to upgrade their systems. Lastly, Intel in the 1990s decided to expand their market coverage beyond the chip business, they decided to come up with “Motherboards” holding all the key components of PC that include networking and graphics-related chips, etc. Surprisingly, in 1995 Intel made an impact by selling over 10 million motherboards and covering 40% of the whole market.
Advanced Micro Devices, AMD – found in 1969 by Walter Jeremiah Sanders and is based in (Sunnyvale) California – is a globally known tech company that specializes in manufacturing semiconductor devices that are used in PC processing. AMD is widely known for manufacturing microprocessors but also produces graphic cards, memory chips, motherboard chips, and a wide range of components used in consumer electronics. In 1970, AMD launched its first product and became the second key manufacturer of PC chips, things were pretty slow at the start but the emphasis was totally on quality.
In 1982, AMD began to supply second source chips to Intel which were then used in IBM PC’s microprocessors. The agreement later ended and in 1991 AMD came with their Am386 microprocessor reverse engineered chip which is compatible with Intel’s 32-bit 386 microprocessor. AMD became the strongest competitor in the chip market with their release of 1st 1-GHz microprocessor known as Athlon processor which was meant to run Microsoft’s operating system. In 2006, AMD introduced another high-end chip known as Opteron. This chain of developments leads AMD to become the leading graphical and computing processors manufacturer.
Battle for Top
Intel and AMD are the only two major contributors to the processor’s market, and this is pretty much a good thing for you if you are in a position to buy a new CPU. The two competitors are at true war, both striving extremely hard to dominate each other and provide the finest quality CPUs. It was Intel on the market to provide consumers with top performers each year, but then AMD decided to bounce back with a release of their 1st gen Ryzen range. Then in 2019, AMD released their 3rd gen Ryzen CPUs, which reduced the gap between Intel & AMD considerably. The game is still ON, AMD now is providing the market with low price CPUs capable of bringing premium performance.
Below we are comparing the two arch-rivals based on different factors which will help you to deeply analyze both brands.
The most frequent question that is asked is which processor provides a better price per value? For normal daily usage, both Intel and AMD CPUs are good to go with. AMD with their release of Zen 2 processors have made a real impact on the market for being a high-end CPU manufacturer, both mainstream and entry-level AMD Zen 2 processor are cheaper and offers good performance. AMD Ryzen 5000 CPUs deliver an amazing performance in terms of speed and efficiency than that of 10th generation Intel’s Core processors, even if they are comparable in prices. AMD’s Zen 2 7 nanometer chips not only feature 32 core but they are considerably cheaper as well. AMD processors are mostly leading in workstation tasks areas when compared to Intel. If you are building a PC for office use, there are many Intel CPUs that come with built-in graphics and they cost comparatively low. On the other side, AMD older Zen 2 processors with stock coolers, are slightly expensive but possess more potential than Intel’s 10th gen processors.
When we specifically talk about productivity, AMD is well above Intel, AMD’s Zen 2 & Zen 3 processors are better choices with excellent price per value. When AMD Ryzen 7 and high-end Ryzen 9 CPUs are compared to Intel similarly priced CPUs, they offer greater cores and greater threads along with low thermal design profiles, speedy RAM support, greater cache memory, and PCIe 4.0 support.
Power Consumption and Heat Analysis
The next key factor for comparison between AMD and Intel is power consumption and heat analysis. Power consumption is a factor related to design same as lithography and architecture. It is quite understandable that higher power consumption leads to provide more heat and you will need stock coolers to deal with the heat output. Intel has worked exceptionally well for the last 5 years on its 14-nanometer processors to boost their price to performance ratio but there it’s also been observed that the latest Intel chipset are known for greater power consumption and heat production and that’s where Intel has to re-think of wants to beat AMD. As compared to Intel’s 14nm, AMD has a more efficient and beneficial TSMC’s 7nm node.
The AMD’s 7nm chips relatively consume low power and give better performance in terms of efficiency and speed. The AMD Ryzen 5000 and Ryzen 5600X are observed to be the most efficient PC chips. In short, AMD processors tend to consume low power and thus results in the production of minimal heat and delivers good overall performance.
Gaming Performance Analysis
Intel processors for so long are dominant in the gaming section however, in 2019 AMD bounced with their 3rd generation Ryzen chips which made the competition pretty much interesting. Now things aren’t this simple to directly decide on AMD or Intel as the best one in the gaming section. AMD CPUs with multi-threading when introduced to heavy work-loads are observed to be more efficient than Intel CPUs. For heavy workloads, that’s fine to go with AMD processors but in gaming, you don’t need that much power, as you deal most of the time with graphics which is a GPU-related task.
Most of the high-end games are graphically demanding, which means they rely on the graphics-related specification of a system, doesn’t mean to say that it all goes with GPU only, CPU is still utilized but not to the fullest as compared to GPU. The latest games are now designed with single-core CPU performance, which means a processor with better single-core performance will provide higher in-game FPS. AMD’s Zen 2 chipset-based microarchitecture processors bring amazing single core performance which is now giving touch time to Intel to dominate the gaming section.
In overclocking section, Intel dominates AMD, which means that Intel’s processors can provide you more powerful performance over baseline speed than that of AMD Ryzen CPUs. You will need to pay a premium price for Intel’s K-series along with buying an expensive Z-series motherboard, just to unlock the best Intel’s overclocking speed. Moreover, Intel chips are observed to be relatively easy to push to their maximum (5 Gigahertz) on each core with the 11th generation Rocket Lake processors. You can’t overclock Intel’s B and H series motherboards but they are equipped with memory overclocking in their B560 and H570 chipsets. On the other side, when we talk about AMD processors, they don’t have much room for manual tuning. The Sum of their all-cores performance falls below the maximum boost of a single core, which means with all core overclocking you can lose performance.
AMD has infused Precision Boost Overdrive, which is a feature that enables the processor to boost its performance within a single click in accordance with its capabilities i-e Cooling system and power delivery system. With AMD processor’s you do get better performance with that Precision boost technology but you can’t beat the overclocking performance of Intel processors.
Productivity and Content Creation Performance Analysis
Speaking about the productivity and content creation performance analysis of both AMD and Intel, the picture this time is pretty much clear between the two rivals. AMD has an upper hand over Intel’s processor when we talk about delivering high-end performance in threaded content creativity and productivity programs. A greater number of core, threads, and cache memory is what makes the AMD Ryzen 9 5950X and 5900X processors deliver efficiency and speed. Intel is far behind in the race of cores and threads, which is why they are unable to dominate AMD CPUs in this section. Intel’s most powerful CPU is Core i9-11900K which is when compared to AMD’s mainstream processor Ryzen 59050X, the Ryzen offers twice the cores and threads that are offered by Intel in its powerful CPU. Intel’s Core i5 and Core i5 processors are relatively good in terms of performance when compared to AMD Ryzen 7 and 5.
For content creative professionals, AMD is the winner – due to its greater core and threads count – in terms of creativity and productivity applications. The only thing that might bother you is that AMD lack integrated graphics whereas Intel offers integrated graphics in its many mainstream processors.