Intel's Core i5-12600K has finally become Newegg's best-selling CPU on the site and sits at the top position on Newgg's leaderboard right now. In addition, the Core i5-12600K is one of the best CPUs for gaming at $277.99. The sub-$300 price, combined with Intel's new Alder Lake microarchitecture, gives the Core i5-12600K a distinct edge over AMD's higher-end Zen 3 counterparts, undercutting CPUs such as the Ryzen 7 5700X and Ryzen 7 5800X by as much as $20-$80 – as of the time of this writing.
In our review of the Core i5-12600K, the Alder Lake chip showed its gaming prowess to be quite good for its original MSRP of $289. Thanks to Intel's new Alder Lake hybrid microarchitecture, the Core i5-12600K's has a 19% IPC improvement over 11th Gen processors, more than enough raw compute power to outperform the latest Zen 3 chips from AMD in gaming applications — except for the Ryzen 7 5800X3D.
In our gaming tests under Windows 11, with the Core i5-12600K specced out with DDR4 memory, we found the Core i5-12600K's gaming performance to be around 11-12% faster than AMD's highly popular Ryzen 5 5600X, which sits in the same $200-$300 price bracket (albeit being slightly cheaper). So even when we compare AMD's more expensive Ryzen 7 5800X to the Core i5-12600K, performance is still in favor of the Intel part while being far cheaper.
With a price tag of just $278 on Newegg, Intel gives users quite a bargain for a highly capable mid-range CPU that features overclocking capabilities, and four additional efficiency cores, which isn't the case for Intel's lower-end Core i5 counterparts — like the Core i5-12400. These other features can make the Core i5-12600K an even better proposition for its sub $300 price tag and allow the chip to outperform the Ryzen 7 5800X in heavily multi-threaded professional applications.