AMD Ryzen 5 2500X and Ryzen 3 2300X Conclusion

With AMD only offering the Ryzen 5 2500X and Ryzen 3 2300X to large OEMs, it allows AMD to move some of the risk of supporting multiple CPUs and stock levels in the channel to its partners. It also pleases the partners to have special parts and build products around them, especially when those parts are competitive. Unfortunately for the end user, it means that if these parts are competitive, they have to buy a prebuilt system to get one, rather than build their own. To add to the quandary, these processors fall right into the price segment of its own very competitive APUs, and the company had to decide whether to have a CPU/APU crossover at retail, or a specific separation between the two. AMD went for the latter.

The reasons behind the way AMD organises it's retail product stack aside, the 2500X and 2300X actually fall into two small gaps in the lineup. 

The quad core 2500X with simultaneous multithreading sits between the 2400G at $145 with similar specs, slightly lower frequency, and much lower power consumpton, and the 2600 at $160 with two more cores. There's arguably no room in there for the 2500X -  and we see in our benchmarks it fits between both pretty easily.

On the other hand, the quad core 2300X without hyperthreading is more akin to a faster 2200G, albeit without the integrated graphics, and butts up against the 2400G above it. This gap to fit the 2300X is bigger, between $95 of the 2200G and $145 of the 2400G, so there could easily be an argument for a faster 2200G for discrete graphics users. On performance, the 2300X handsomely beats the 2200G due to consuming more power per core, and even takes the 2400G on lightly threaded tests, but it is less power efficient. For small form factor systems the APUs still win, but in raw CPU and gaming performance, the 2300X easily fits between the two APUs, especially if we marked it at $110 or so, rather than $130.

So where does this AMD? In my professional opinion, the 2300X could be a really nice low-end processor for users that don't want to spend money on integrated graphics they won't use. Add in a 95W stock cooler and at $100-$110, it would be a really nice chip. The 2500X is a harder sell. For the small price gap it fits into, I would tell users to bite the bullet and go for the 2600, or if they need integrated graphics to get the 2400G. The only way the 2500X makes sense is if the 2400G or 2600 isn't available in a particular local market.

It will be interesting to see if AMD ever sells these at retail. There are four other chips they are not selling at retail either (at least, not retail worldwide): the 2700E, 2600E, 2400GE, and 2200GE. If anyone finds any of these for sale, let me know over email or Twitter @IanCutress

Recommended Reading on AMD Ryzen
2700X and 2600X
CPU Review
2400G and 2200G
APU Review
Threadripper 2
2990WX Review
Best CPUs
2700 and 2600
CPU Review
APU Memory Scaling Threadripper 2
2970WX Review
Delidding a
Ryzen APU
Power Consumption and TDP
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  • romrunning - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    It may just be me, but all of the links on the "Pages In This Review" at the bottom of the main page simply return me to the main page. Reply
  • romrunning - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    But the drop-down to the specific page works as expected. Reply
  • evilspoons - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    It's definitely not just you. I spent a few tries wondering what I was doing wrong and re-read the start of the article until I tried the drop-down menu instead of the links. Reply
  • Ian Cutress - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    That's my fault, as the hyperlinks need to be manually added. I had messed up the part of the URL after the /show/13945. It should be fixed now. Reply
  • Kevin G - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    I noticed this as well. Reply
  • meltdowner - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    R5 2600 all day. These are nice processors for smaller machines, though. Reply
  • GigaCat - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    Heck, even a 2600 can sit comfortably in a HTPC with low-profile cooling. Reply
  • IGTrading - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    Thank you Ian for a good review.

    I completely agree with the conclusion that the 2300X makes perfect sense, but the 2500X is harder to place in the picture ...

    On the other hand, despite 2400G and the 2500X have the same TDP, if I look at the graph with full load power consumption, I can clearly see that the latter has a very generous thermal limit, compared with the 2400G where the thermal envelope seems to be very strictly limited.

    Meaning OEMs will probably be able to use the 2500X for cheaper gaming systems where auto-overclocking is used as a feature and AMD will thus be able to offer something better for a lower price.

    This also allows AMD to push AM4 harder on the market, giving itself the opportunity to future upgrades for AM4 buyers.

    So the 2500X will show considerably better performance than the 2400G despite the similar config (minus the iGPU) while not cannibalizing the 2600 nor the 2400G.

    If AMD manages to sell more 2500X through OEMs, AMD also builds a future upgrade market for itself, unlike Intel that will likely push buyers into purchasing new machines.
    Reply
  • dromoxen - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    ppl buying these CPUs are not the sort to be upgrading the CPU.. to most the computer is a closed box and is upgraded as a whole . I do wonder where all these cores are going .. I mean its great to have 4 6 8 cores with another 8 hyperthreads .. but who is using all that power ? Lets make 4 cores the absolute limit , unless you have a Govt permit to purchase more. Reply
  • GreenReaper - Monday, February 11, 2019 - link

    Browsers have been getting a lot better at using multiple cores, and websites surely do enough in the background nowadays to justify the effort. Reply

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