AMD Taking Pre-Orders for Ryzen Processor, Says It Beats Intel
By Jef Cozza / Top Tech News. Updated February 22, 2017.
AMD announced today that its new Ryzen 7 lineup of processors will launch March 2 with pre-orders starting today, Feb. 22 at 1 p.m. ET. The big deal about this launch, according to AMD, is that benchmark figures show AMD's new eight-core processors seem to either match or outperform the best chips competitor Intel has to offer, and, for a fraction of the price.
For example, AMD cited results showing the Ryzen 7 1700X outperformed a similarly configured eight-core, 16-thread Intel Core i7-6900K in the respected Maxon Cinebench benchmark. The benchmark measured R15 multi-threaded and Handbrake-based video transcoding, as well as 4K gaming performance. Impressively, the 1700X costs only $399, while the Intel i7-6900K will run you $1,089.
That means, for the first time in more than a decade, AMD might be able to give Intel a real run for its money.
Back in the Saddle
If so, it will be about time. AMD was once a viable competitor to Intel's CPU business, with a reputation for providing comparable performance at a much lower price point. But the company has struggled since the late nineties, as Intel's manufacturing techniques have allowed it to produce ever higher-quality chips.
AMD launched an aggressive effort to change all that about four years ago with its Zen line of processors.
"Four years ago we began development of our 'Zen' processor core with the goal to deliver unprecedented generational performance gains and return choice and innovation to the high-performance computing market," said Dr. Lisa Su, president and CEO of AMD. "On March 2, enthusiasts and gamers around the world will experience 'Zen' in action, as we launch our Ryzen 7 family of processors and reinvigorate the desktop computing market."
While AMD's prices will be well below what Intel charges, the company says it is not looking to make a play for the low end of the market. On the contrary, it boasted that the Ryzen 7 1800X is the world's highest performing eight-core desktop processor.
High Performance and Low Power
High-performance is not the only title AMD is shooting for with the AMD lineup, though. While the 1800X will be the line's flagship processor, the 1700 will play a more niche role as the lowest-power eight-core desktop processor in the world, the company said.
That should prove welcome news to customers looking to keep a lid on power consumption and heat production. To help keep heat levels down further, AMD said the lineup will feature new thermal solutions based on the original Wraith coolers, which were first launched in 2016.
The new Wraith thermal technologies include Wraith Spire and Wraith Stealth, which AMD says will offer efficient, near-silent performance with excellent cooling at a quiet 32 decibels.
The announcement of the launch date also brings news of new motherboard designs for the upcoming chips. AMD said it anticipates 82 new motherboards for the Ryzen 7, with designs from OEMs such as ASRock, Asus, Biostar, Gigabyte, and MSI.