AMD’s Ryzen 5 2500X and Ryzen 3 2300X could lead to more affordable gaming PCs

Right around a month ago, Lenovo spilled the beans on a couple of unannounced Ryzen processor SKUs, the Ryzen 5 2500X and Ryzen 3 2300X, both of which temporarily appeared as CPU options for its ThinkCenter M725 line of small form factor (SFF) desktop PCs. Those new processors are in fact real, and now official.

AMD sent us a note today announcing the "immediate availability" of both new chips, though you can't head over to Amazon or Newegg and grab one. That's because AMD is making them exclusively available to its OEM partners and system integrators (SIs) "to develop their own unique and attractive systems that target consumers who want an off-the-shelf gaming, family, or SFF desktop PC."

More on that in a moment, but first let's go over the specs. The Ryzen 5 2500X is a 4-core/8-thread processor clocked at 3.6-4.0GHz, with 10MB of Smart Prefetch cache and a 65W TDP. The Ryzen 3 2300X, meanwhile, is a 4-core/4-thread CPU clocked at 3.5-4.0GHz, also with 10MB of total cache and a 65W TDP.

Here's how they compare to the first generation Ryzen processors they're intended to replace:

  • Ryzen 5 2500X: 4C8T, 3.6GHz to 4GHz, 10MB L1+L2 cache, DDR4-2933 support
  • Ryzen 5 1500X: 4C8T, 3.5GHz to 3.7GHz, 18MB L1+L2 cache, DDR4-2667 support
  • Ryzen 3 2300X: 4C4T, 3.5GHz to 4GHz, 10MB L1+L2 cache, DDR4-2933 support
  • Ryzen 3 1300X: 4C4T, 3.5GHz to 3.7GHZ, 10MB L1+L2 cache, DDR4-2667 support

These are interesting additions that should make it easier for OEM system builders to offer sub-$1,000 gaming PCs. In fact, we can already see this. AMD pointed us to Acer's Nitro N50-100, one of the first desktop systems to utilize the Ryzen 5 2500X. It's paired with 8GB of DDR4-2666 RAM, a Radeon RX 580 graphics card, and 1TB hard drive (7,200 rpm), and is now shipping for $899.99. That's not a bad setup for the money.

We expect to see more systems like this, along with the usual crop of general purpose PCs. Without pricing information, it's tough to say where these land compared to AMD's Ryzen 3 2200G and Ryzen 5 2400G APUs. They're clocked a bit faster and have more L3 cache, so they should be a modest step up in performance, though we still prefer the 6-core/12-thread Ryzen 5 2600 and 2600X.

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