AMD is kicking off its refresh of the now budget branded Athlon CPUs, built around the very successful Zen architecture CPU, and introduces Vega graphics to the package for some gaming on the cheap APUs. On top of this is also the launch of the 2nd generation Ryzen PRO CPUs for businesses.
There are three new Athlon chips being announced, with the Athlon 200GE being the first out of the gate, coming September 18th. The Athlon 220GE and 240GE will come later in Q4. Starting from $55 for the 200GE, these Athlons are meant for real budget builds and very small form-factor desktops. The only details announced so far are for the 200GE, with 2/4 cores/threads, 5MB cache, and running at a flat 3.2 GHz, it’s definitely a modest chip. The Vega graphics come in the for of three compute units, or put another way, 192 shaders.
While decidedly low-end, these new Athlons are a huge step up over the previous generation, the A6-9500E APUs. The Zen architecture by itself is a giant leap in performance by itself, the Vega graphics is just the icing on the cake. By AMD’s own testing, the 200GE is up to 169% faster overall, with 67% better graphics compared to the A6-9500E, and up to 84% faster than Intel’s G4560 in gaming (that specific result being in Overwatch), The other two Athlon APUs have not had any other specifics listed yet. These new Athlons are 14nm, as they are based on the original Zen architecture, whereas the new Ryzen PROs are 12nm.
|Model||Cores||Threads||Clock Base/Boost||Cache||TDP||Graphics CUs|
|AMD Athlon PRO 200GE||2||4||3.2 GHz||5 MB||35 W||3|
|AMD Ryzen 7 PRO 2700X||8||16||3.6/4.1 GHz||20 MB||105 W||~|
|AMD Ryzen 7 PRO 2700||8||16||3.2/4.1 GHz||20 MB||65 W||~|
|AMD Ryzen 7 PRO 2600||6||12||3.4/3.9 GHz||19 MB||65 W||~|
The Athlon APUs will fit in existing AM4 socket motherboards, and will include the usual mix of supporting hardware such as DDR4 memory, NVMe storage, 4K displays, and USB 3.1 Gen 2. This means should a user decide to upgrade, they can move from the budget Athlon to a Ryzen CPU with discrete graphics, while keeping the rest of the system in-tact (PSU permitting).
Also announced is the 2nd generation Ryzen PRO CPUs, and an Athlon PRO variant of the 200GE APU previously mentioned. These new 2nd Gen Ryzen PROs follow on exactly from the consumer desktop parts, with general improvements overall compared to the first Ryzen launch, meaning slightly higher clocks and better memory compatibility and latency improvements. This comes as a result of the usual architecture tweaks and the switch to 12nm manufacture process.
The Ryzen and Athlon PRO CPU/APUs will launch with their respective OEM partner launches from the usual providers, such as Dell, HP, and Lenovo.