AMD Raven Ridge: no more budget graphics cards?

In the stream of announcements from AMD on CES 2018, the presentation of new desktop processors of the Raven Ridge family deserves special attention. These are the first hybrid Ryzen chips, equipped with integrated graphics Radeon RX Vega. At the start, the manufacturer offered two processors for the Socket AM4 desktop platform – Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200G. The official launch of new APUs is scheduled for February 12, but enough information is already available to quickly assess the capabilities of Raven Ridge.

AMD Raven Ridge

So, AMD introduced two processors with integrated graphics – Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200G. Both chips have 4 cores, while the older model has activated SMT technology, allowing simultaneous processing of up to 8 data streams.

The Ryzen 5 2400G has a base frequency of 3.6 GHz CPU with dynamic acceleration up to 3.9 GHz. The processor is equipped with a GPU with 11 compute units (CU) containing 704 shader units with a peak operating frequency of 1250 MHz.
In turn, the Ryzen 3 2200G has a frequency formula for x86-cores 3.5 / 3.7 GHz, and the graphics module includes 8 CUs with 512 computers operating at frequencies up to 1100 MHz. Both processors are equipped with 4 MB L3 cache memory and have a thermal package of 65 W.
Ryzen 5 2400G is estimated by the manufacturer at $ 169, and Ryzen 3 2200G received the recommended price of $ 99.

It is curious that in the table with adjustments to the cost of chips the Ryzen 5 1400 (4/8, 3.2 / 3.4 GHz) and Ryzen 3 1200 (4/4, 3.1 / 3.4 GHz) are not displayed from the manufacturer's presentation. Does this mean that the new APUs will nominally replace these models? It is highly probable that this is the case.

Ryzen 5 2400G Ryzen 3 2200G Ryzen 5 1400 Ryzen 3 1200
Family Raven Ridge Raven Ridge Summit Ridge [19659015] Summit Ridge
Technology of production 14 nm 14 nm 14 nm 14 nm
Number of nuclei / fluxes 4/8 4/4 ] 4/8 4/4
The frequency formula 3.6 / 3.9 GHz 3.5 / 3.7 GHz 3.2 / 3.4 GHz [19659030] 3,1 / 3,4 GHz
The cache memory capacity L2 4 × 512 KB 4 × 512 KB 4 × 512 KB 4 × 512 KB
The cache volume Memory L3 4 MB 4 MB 8 MB 8 MB
Memory support n / a n / a DDR4-2666 [19659045] DDR4-2666
Integra Radeon RX Vega 11 (11 CU, 704 units) Radeon RX Vega 8 (8 CU, 512 units)
The processor socket Socket AM4 [19659052SocketAM4 Socket AM4
Unlocked multiplier + + + +
Thermal package 65 W 65 W [19659062] 65 W 65 W
The recommended price for the moment of announcement $ 169 $ 99 $ 169 $ 109

Even if AMD formally does not abolish the position data in its price list , this will happen naturally. In terms of computing performance, Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200 will not lose at least, and in most cases will be faster due to increased clock frequencies.

In general, AMD does not try to hide it. Even on the presentation slides, the correlation of the forces of the new APUs and Summit Ridge base chips in multithreaded computing tasks is reflected. However, there are possible nuances. Recall that the Raven Ridge processors are equipped with 4 MB of cache memory of the third level, while the 4-nuclear Summit Ridge has twice as much L3 – 8 MB. For certain types of tasks, for example, the increased cache size will play an important role. 19659003] Graphics Radeon RX Vega 11 and Radeon RX Vega 8

The obvious advantage of the new models is the fact that they do not have the same price (Ryzen 5 1400 – $ 169, Ryzen 3 1200 – $ 109) integrated graphics Radeon RX Vega. For universal systems, the presence of a processor with a built-in GPU is an opportunity to do without a discrete video card, that is, a direct saving in the assembly of a PC.
If the Raven Ridge computing performance is more or less clear initially, then the integrated graphics capabilities are of the greatest interest. And here the manufacturer also gives initial guidelines.

Ryzen 5 2400G with integrated video core Radeon RX Vega 11 looks very good on the background of Core i5-8400 with built-in Intel UHD 630. At the manufacturer's diagrams we see a 2-3-fold advantage of Raven Ridge. Taking into account the capabilities of Intel UHD 630, the Radeon RX Vega 11 performance is close to that for discrete graphics cards of the GeForce GT 1030 level.

Another indirect confirmation of the performance of AMD's new integrated graphics is the leak from TUM APISAK enthusiast who provided a direct link to the comparison of systems with Core i5-7600 / i7-7700 and GeForce GT 1030, as well as platforms based on the Ryzen 5 2400G processor with integrated graphics in the 3DMark 11 Performance test. The performance of the graphics part of the systems was similar at all graphic stages of the benchmark. However, in this comparison, the operating frequencies of the RAM and the built-in GPU remain behind the scenes, therefore the obtained indicators can be used only as estimates. And the indicators in the synthetic test do not always reflect the state of affairs in real games.

AMD says about the same level of performance, assuring that in the 3DMark Time Spy the Ryzen 5 2400G processor will provide the results available to the Core i5-8400 + GeForce bundle GT 1030. The manufacturer is somewhat disingenuous, using a similar example. The combination of Core i3-8100 with a similar graphics card would certainly provide similar performance in the test, but the price difference would not be so impressive.

Anyway, the integrated graphics of the level of the GT 1030 in the processor with a TDP of 65W is very even worthy . Of course, even for the basic gaming system, this is still not enough. This performance of the built-in GPU allows you to get an acceptable number of frames / s to see even new projects and feel comfortable in most games 3-5 years ago.

Using the built-in graphics, it is worth remembering that memory for storing textures and The required GPU data will be stored in the system RAM. For a PC with 8 GB, this is an additional load. This amount of RAM is already barely enough for new games, and if you allocate another 1.5-2 GB for the needs of the integrated video core, then access to the swap file can not be avoided. However, on a system with "inbuilt", for sure, the most sparing modes with low graphics quality will be used or age projects that conserve memory will be run.
The graphic capabilities of Ryzen 3 2200G are somewhat more modest due to the reduced number of computational units and reduced clock frequencies. We will not rely entirely on AMD data, because the presented indicators cause questions. For now, let's just assume that Radeon RX Vega 8 is more productive than Intel UHD 630 in 1,5-2 times. Too bad.

For the new chips AMD not only preserved the ability to overclock the x86 cores, but also allows experimenting with the operating frequency of the GPU. And, it seems, there is also a good potential for additional acceleration. In addition, work with high-speed memory modules should improve. For integrated graphics, the throughput of RAM is very important and significantly affects performance. Two-channel access mode with a pair of memory modules is simply required. As you can see on the slide, overclocking of the built-in video core and use of DDR4-3600 (oh!), Instead of DDR4-2400, allow almost 40% to improve the performance of the processor, at least in the 3DMark Fire Strike test. And if you still connect CPU overclocking … In general, the field for experiments here is very large.

At first glance, Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200G are quite curious and "viable". The older model attracts somewhat more performance and built-in graphics, comparable to discrete entry-level graphics cards. Ryzen 5 1400 is definitely not the most popular model in the Ryzen family. Obviously, those who focus on chips worth ~ $ 170, it's more interesting to pull up to Ryzen 5 1600 ($ 219, and after lowering prices – $ 189) and get a 6-core 12-thread CPU. A powerful built-in graphics will be an argument for those who choose a chip for a universal system in this category, although I would still like to see the price tag Ryzen 5 2400G at $ 150.

The four-core Ryzen 3 2200G is certainly interesting at $ 99, cost and characteristics. Ryzen 3 1200 costs $ 109, but here we get an initially faster processor, which is flavored with a good integrated GPU and is cheaper. Here, especially without options.

With the advent of the younger APU Ryzen, the Bristol Ridge family chips fall into the lowest segment, where the performance requirements are low, and the price is the determining one. Surely the cost of older A12 / A10 processors will be further revised (A12-9800 – $ 99, A10-9700 – $ 79).


It is interesting to further develop the Raven Ridge lineup. Surely we'll see economical versions of the presented models, but with reduced CPU / GPU frequencies and the claimed thermal package of 35W. In the next six months, the manufacturer is unlikely to offer even more affordable chips in this series. The lower segment of the APU will be closed by Bristol Ridge, while the "title" of Ryzen is now worn by processors worth $ 99. And especially to simplify the Ryzen 3 2200G without significant losses will not work. With the same A12 / 10/8/6, few people on desktops will be interested in, for example, dual-core chips with Zen architecture and less productive graphics. Is that as a replacement for A6-9500 for the same money ($ 47).
Its customers would surely have found 6/8-core processors with a relatively powerful video core. As the practice of Intel showed, the built-in GPU is never superfluous. Owners of productive CPU do not always need discrete graphics, but in the case of the classic Ryzen there is no choice. Alas, we also will not see chips with more than four x86 cores for more than four years.
The "Big" Crystal Ryzen (Summit Ridge) initially contains 8 cores with 16 MB L3 and this requires about 200 mm².

Similar dimensions has a crystal of 4-nuclear mobile chips Ryzen Mobile, equipped with integrated graphics Vega. As it is easy to see, about one third of the area is occupied only by the GPU computing units (blue on the right). The structure of desktop Raven Ridge is very similar, only differences in frequencies, voltages and activated modules. Therefore, if we imagine that we need to add another GPU to the 8-core Summit Ridge with the accompanying binding, then it is obvious that we need about a half of the total area of ​​the silicon plate. For such costs, AMD certainly will not.

Perhaps after a successful transition to a 12-nanometer chip manufacturing technology, additional opportunities will open, but chips with a GPU and more cores will appear only in the next generation of APUs. But in the current version of Raven Ridge is interesting in its own way, so we are looking forward to getting to know Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200G.

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