Power Consumption and Conclusion
Well…that's interesting. The power draw of the 2400G in our testing well exceeds that of the Ryzen 5 1400, despite the fact that both are rated at 65-watt TDPs. At just over 110 watts at the wall (for the entire system), the higher-end Ryzen APU is using 10-15 watts more power than the 6-core Intel Core i5-8400, despite running a CPU-only test. There is a similar increase in power draw for the Ryzen 3 2200G over the Ryzen 3 1200.
While this may not be a deal breaker for many, the power increases here are likely related to the higher clocks that AMD pushed to get with the 2000-series parts, indicating we may see similar increases with the "Zen+" designs coming this April. Though we'll have to see if the move to GlobalFoundries 12nm modified process can help, Intel definitely has the advantage in terms of CPU-bound compute efficiency.
Conclusions and Final Thoughts
The AMD Ryzen Processor with Radeon Vega Graphics, which is it its official name, does exactly what we thought it would do for AMD. It brings the revitalization of the Zen architecture to a market and class of product that previously had been without it. While that sounds simple and straightforward, being able to address as much as 50% or more of the consumer and SMB desktop PC market that they could previously not, or did so only with inferior products, is a significant business milestone for the team.
It doesn’t hurt of course that the product the company built is pretty good as well. With a quad-core design, one of the two shipping with 8 threads enabled, the Ryzen 2000G-series of processors is competitive in some areas in regard to processor performance. Intel was smart to plan ahead and release a 6-core Core i5 product in preparation for this release, as it means that Intel still has the edge in key multi-threaded benchmarks like Cinebench R15 and POV-Ray. And in gaming with a discrete GPU installed, the advantage Intel holds in CPU IPC remains a strong data point.
Looking at the integrated graphics portion of the debate though, AMD wins this, hands down. Intel has long struggled to keep up with AMD in the area of graphics design, recently tapping the Radeon GPU vendor for a semi-custom chip for higher end gaming notebooks. In this 65-watt desktop space, the Vega integration on the Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200G walks away with the victory over the HD 630 Graphics in the Core i5-8400. Anyone considering one of these two parts for a budget build that is or may be doing some light gaming has an easy decision to make.
Looking at the graphics of the Ryzen 5 2400G compared to an add-in card like the GT 1030 from NVIDIA, AMD pulls off some impressive performance. The Ryzen APU is able to deliver true discrete-level graphics performance in a single socket and package. This will put AMD at the head of the pack when it comes to PC builders looking for a small form factor, mainstream gaming solution without the need for expensive or power hungry add-in cards.
The rest of 2018 doesn’t look like its slowing down for AMD in terms of processor releases. We have the promised "Zen+" design coming on 12nm technology in April, along with updated Ryzen Pro and Threadripper CPUs later in the summer. Intel may have finally realized that AMD was competitive again in the space, but that in no way means AMD leadership plans on slowing down.