And the Winner Is...
So we've looked at plenty of benchmarks and it's pretty clear the Ryzen 3 2200G wipes the floor with the Pentium G5400, but is it better value? Well, if you're planning on gaming without a discrete graphics card then yes, it's world's better value and there's simply no comparison to be made here. Gaming with the integrated GPU found in the G5400 is almost impossible and extremely limited at best. The 2200G on the other hand can mimic the performance of an entry-level discrete GPU.
Do you plan on purchasing something like a GTX 1050, RX 560 or perhaps something more powerful or you also want to use your budget build to get into video editing or any other kind of productivity work then which CPU should you get?
Well, first let's factor in the platform costs. The MSI H310M Pro-VD which we used to support the Pentium G5400 costs roughly $62 and 8GB of DDR4-2400 memory will set you back $75. Add those prices to the $64 you can expect to pay for the Pentium G5400 and you have a platform bill of $191, let's say $190 for a nice round figure.
The Ryzen 3 2200G comes in at $100 and you can expect to pay about $70 for a B350 motherboard. The MSI B350 Mortar that we used comes in at $90 but it's significantly better than the H310 board in terms of quality and features, so let's put down $70 for a board that is closer to being equal. Then for DDR4-3200 memory, 8GB kits go for around $100, putting the 2200G combo that we tested at around $270, a little over 40% more costly than the Intel build.
Of course, if you factor in the cost of a graphics card such as the GTX 1050, then that margin comes down to just over 20%. You can also get away with slower memory when using the 2200G with a graphics card and that'll help reduce the overall cost.
In any case, without a graphics card, the 2200G as I said earlier is without question worth the premium. A 40% increase from $190 to $270 is well worth the 250% increase in iGPU performance for gamers, not to mention you can actually play all the latest games.
If you're not interested in 3D performance and just want a PC for general usage than the Pentium G5400 is tough to beat. That said, if you're not interested in 3D performance but want to tackle heavy tasks like rendering, encoding and so on then again the extra investment is still well worth it as the 2200G was often up to 40% faster. And don't try to tell me no one does these tasks on quad-core CPUs, because I know they do.
In summary, the new Pentium G5400 only makes sense if you want a dirt cheap PC for web browsing, consuming media content and firing off the odd email. Anything more than that and investing the extra $80 in the Ryzen 3 2200G platform is going to net you significantly more performance and a much better upgrade path in the future.
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