Ryzen Now Starts at $110
Although we've only just learned official information about Ryzen 3, it feels like we already know everything there was to know about AMD's new R3 1200 and 1300X after running simulated benchmarks last week. Today we get to see how accurate those preliminary results were and get to match those impressions with finalized pricing.
As before, the Ryzen 3 1300X will operate at a base frequency of 3.5GHz with a boost frequency of 3.7GHz, while the slightly lower-end 1200 drops that to 3.1GHz with a 3.4GHz boost. Both parts are unlocked, so the pricier 1300X seems less attractive to us at $130, which is only $40 away from the SMT-enabled R5 1400. At $110, the R3 1200 offers $60 in savings over the R5 1400 and seems like a better buy for budget builders.
We're curious to see how much slower the SMT-less Ryzen 3 processors are, particularly when compared to similarly priced Intel CPUs. Doing this is a little tricky because as we explained before, Intel's CPUs make little sense here and the $80 Pentium G4560 eliminates everything right up to the $190 Core i5-7400. In other words, everything priced below $180 in Intel's current lineup is pointless, including the company's entire Kaby Lake Core i3 range.
We're also wondering how much overclocking will affect the overall picture (teaser: using the Wraith Stealth box, the Ryzen 3 1200 hit 3.9GHz while the 1300X offered 4.0GHz). Assuming they can outpace the locked 7400 and 7500, AMD's new entry-level chips should be sitting comfortably at their $110 and $130 MSRPs.
Synthetic & Application Benchmarks
First up, memory performance and a few quick notes. When I put together the simulated Ryzen 3 article, I used DDR4-2933 with the Ryzen 5 1400 (SMT-disabled) as I noted that it was likely that Ryzen 3 CPUs would have a hard time running with faster memory. So far this has indeed been the case as neither the 1300X or 1200 would boot using the DDR4-3200 XMP setting.
So I was forced to run at DDR4-2933 and this was also the case with my Ryzen 5 1500X and 1400 CPUs as well. Nonetheless performance was decent and we saw over 34GB/s of memory bandwidth. That figure was boosted to around 35.5GB/s once the CPUs were overclocked.
We have the first CPU-related benchmark here, in which Ryzen 3 1200 shows fairly weak single thread performance, coupled with reasonably decent multi-threaded performance. The higher clocked 1300X made out bit better, matching the single thread performance of the Core i5-7600 with slightly weaker multi-threaded performance.
After being overclocked, both Ryzen 3 CPUs achieve similar scores as they were running at a similar frequency. Both were faster than the i5-7500 for both the single and multi-threaded tests.
For those interested in compression and decompression work, in 7-Zip the 1200 was a good bit faster than the Pentium G4560 but slower than the Core i3-7350K. The 1300X was much more impressive as it beat the i3-7350K and edged out the i5-7500. Once overclocked, both Ryzen 3 CPUs sat comfortably ahead of the i5-7500.
In our Microsoft Excel 2016 test the 1300X did well to match the lower-clocked 1400 while the 1200 trailed the i3-7350K but it was much faster than the G4560. We squeezed a little more out of the Ryzen 3 CPUs via overclocking but even so the 1300X still trailed the i5-7500 by a small margin.
Moving on, we have the first of four PCMark 10 test suits that we're going to look at. The data here is arranged by the video conferencing results and here the Ryzen 3 CPUs slot in between the Pentium G4560 and Core i3-7350K. Once overclocked they moved ahead of the Core i5-7500.
The productivity test has been arranged by the spreadsheets results and here the Ryzen 3 CPUs sat at the bottom of our graph behind the G4560. They make up considerable ground with overclocking in this test, however, and are now able to match the Ryzen 5 1600X and Core i5-7500.
This graph has been arranged by the photo editing result and here the Ryzen 3 CPUs do well with the 1300X nearly matching the Core i5-7500. Once overclocked, both the 1200 and 1300X pulled ahead to deliver 1500X-like performance.
The Ryzen 3 1200 was slightly faster than the G4560 in our video editing test while the 1300X sat between the i5-7500 and i3-7350K -- the higher-clocked Core i3 CPU was the faster of the two. Overclocking boosted Ryzen 3's performance significantly and we are now seeing Core i7-7700K-like performance in this test.