Our CPU benchmarks performance hierarchy ranks all the current and previous generation Intel and AMD processors, including all of the Best CPUs for Gaming, based on performance. Your CPU has a huge effect on overall performance and, to many, is a computer’s most important component. CPU benchmarks help us sort out the differences, but when it comes time to buy a CPU for your desktop, you’ll find a dizzying collection of model numbers and specs from both Intel and AMD.

We’ve listed the best CPUs for gaming and best processors for workstations in other articles, but if you want to know how each chip stacks up against all the others and how we come to our decisions, this CPU benchmarks hierarchy is for you. If you’re looking for a broader view of the current state of the market, head to our AMD vs Intel feature.

If you’re looking for the fastest gaming chip on the market across the broadest range of prices, Intel’s Alder Lake chips have taken the crown from AMD in convincing fashion, though AMD’s latest chip is an outlier that holds the overall performance crown. AMD’s Ryzen 7 5800X3D takes the title as the fastest gaming CPU on the market and lives up to AMD’s claim that 3D V-Cache delivers an increase in gaming performance equivalent to what we would normally only see from a new microarchitecture. However, the 58000X3D isn’t as fast as comparable chips in other types of single- and multi-threaded work beyond gaming. That’s because the other models have a core count and frequency advantage.