Today AMD, as expected announced the AMD Ryzen 5 series family. There are four new models with two 6 core / 12 thread models and two 4 core / 8 thread models. Just to give one an idea here, a 6 core chip in Q1 2010 with similar clock speeds to the AMD Ryzen 1600 was an Intel Xeon X5680 CPU that cost around $1600 and had a 130W TDP. 6-core chips in that era were relegated to only the highest-end of the server market. Here we are seven years later and the $219, with cooler, part has half the TDP, higher IPC, at 1/8th the price. That is some progress.
AMD Ryzen 5 1600X and 1500X in the Overall Lineup
In terms of new SKUs, AMD Is launching the AMD Ryzen 5 1600X as the premiere Ryzen 5 SKU. There is no bundled cooler but with a 95W TDP and higher clock speeds, it has unique features. For $30 less one can get an AMD Ryzen 5 1600 which has a lower TDP and an included cooler (essentially a $30-40 value) sacrificing only 400MHz clock speeds. The Ryzen 5 1500X and Ryzen 5 1400 are the lower-end 4 core / 8 thread SKUs.
Here is the lineup that AMD has announced thus far:
|Product Line||Model||Cores||Threads||Base Clock (GHz)||Boost Clock (GHz)||Included Cooler||TDP (W)||Available||Price|
|RYZEN 7||1700||8||16||3.0||3.7||Wraith Spire RGB||65||Now||$329|
|RYZEN 5||1600X||6||12||3.6||4.0||N/A||95||April 11, 2017||$249|
|RYZEN 5||1600||6||12||3.2||3.6||Wraith Spire||65||April 11, 2017||$219|
|RYZEN 5||1500X||4||8||3.5||3.7||Wraith Spire||65||April 11, 2017||$189|
|RYZEN 5||1400||4||8||3.2||3.4||Wraith Stealth||65||April 11, 2017||$169|
As you can see, the AMD Ryzen 7 1700 is still, perhaps, the best value. The next best may be the AMD Ryzen 5 1600 with a 65W TDP and 6 cores/ 12 threads. If you were clinging to a Westmere-EP generation part to get 6 cores/ 12 threads inexpensively, this should be the end of that experiment.
In terms of additional coolers, the AMD Ryzen 5 Wraith Coolers are the Stealth and Spire.
The Spire is more than enough to cool 95W TDP parts. The frugal among us will opt for included coolers.
AMD Ryzen Model Numbers
Here are the model number breakdowns for the AMD Ryzen AM4 series of CPUs:
As you can see, these are considered “High Performance” SKUs and just a notch above mainstream CPUs we should see in the future. In terms of timing, the Ryzen 3 is coming in the second half of this year.
You can see the April 11, 2017 availability of the Ryzen 5 parts. Expect more as that date passes.
The middle column of the slide below summarizes the significance:
As CPU prices fall, volumes increase, significantly. We are excited to see that the new range pushes sub $300. At the same time, it will be hard to recommend a Ryzen 5 1600X over the Ryzen 7 1700 or the Ryzen 5 1600 given the additional core counts, lower TDP and included coolers.