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August 11, 2017

AMD Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400 Performance Review

By: Low Chern Lin




AMD has gotten a lot of attention from the enthusiasts' community around the globe since the launch of its Ryzen 7 CPU family. The promising performance that goes on par or even better than Intel's CPU marks the new rise of AMD (befitting of the name Ryzen) again in the PC enthusiasts community after the past decade.


We managed to get our hands on the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400 CPU for today's review, thanks to AMD Malaysia. Let's proceed with the review and see just what kind of performance can we expect from both the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400 - will it be a yay just like the Ryzen 7, or a nay?

(The AMD Ryzen 5 1600 and Ryzen 5 1400 are currently retailed RM1039 and RM819 respectively.)

Test Bench Setup

For this review, we'll be using 2 different test bench with the configuration as shown in the tables below. The CPU cooler, memory kit, SSD, power supply and test bench used are basically the same and the only thing that is swapped out for each set of tests are the CPU and motherboards.

Test Rig Configuration
CPU Cooler
Corsair H100i Hydro Series
CPU
Intel Core i7 7700K and i5 7600K
Motherboard
MSI Z270 Gaming M7
Memory
Apacer Panther Rage Illumination DDR4
Primary Hard Drive
ADATA SU800 256GB
Power Supply
Be Quiet! Straight Power 10 600W
Chassis
Cooler Master Test Bench V1


Test Rig Configuration
CPU Cooler
Corsair H100i Hydro Series
CPU
AMD Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400
Motherboard
Aorus X370 Gaming 5
Memory
Apacer Panther Rage Illumination DDR4
Primary Hard Drive
ADATA SU800 256GB
Power Supply
Be Quiet! Straight Power 10 600W
Chassis
Cooler Master Test Bench V1

CPU Performance Benchmark

We started the performance benchmark with a mixed series of tests which consists of real world test and synthetic test to measure the performance of each CPU. The recorded result is then populated in the graphs below for easier comparison and reference.

Single Threaded Performance






For single threaded performance, we can see that both the Intel Core i7 7700K and i5 7600K still lead the game as usual. 

SuperPi 1.5 performance comparison - Intel Core i7 4790 vs. AMD FX-8320E 

However, the differences here are quite significant if you've been monitoring the single threaded performance between both Intel and AMD CPU in the past, the performance gap isn't as in the past. 

Multi-threaded Performance

Moving on to the multi-threaded performance test, we have both Intel Core i7 7700K and i5 7600K going head on with both the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400. Synthethic benchmark used includes Cinebench R15 and wPrime 1024m benchmark, and actual world performance benchmark using Handbrake open-source video transcoder and  WinRAR compression tool.









3DMark Time Spy and Firestrike Benchmark

Futuremark's 3DMark is one of the popular benchmark among the enthusiast's community and it has been used by many to measure the graphics performance of a graphics card - something which we usually see in leaked graphics card performance on hardware sites like videocardz, wccftech, xfastest, etc.







Games Performance Benchmark - 1080p 

As for the gaming performance, we included a few popular AAA titles for our test. Since Ryzen 5's launch, some of these titles have received optimization updates from the game developers.








While we can still see a significant performance gap in games like Rise of the Tomb Raider, the rest of the games tested are actually showing minimal differences in its overall performance.


CPU and Memory Overclocking


Last but not least, the overclocking capability of both the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400. As you know, there are a huge numbers of complaints on the CPU overclocking and memory compatibility issue flowing around the internet after AMD launched the Ryzen 5 CPUs.

We have experienced similar issues on our side here as well, but that's before we updated the motherboard's BIOS to the latest version. The BIOS update is definitely showing significant changes compared to the earlier version.






For CPU overclocking, we're able to overclock both the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400 to 3.95GHz via different approach i.e raising the voltage and base clock, but that's the highest we can achieve with the current setup.

Going above the 4.0GHz mark requires a lot more tweaking, trial and error to ensure the system is stable. The Ryzen CPU requires a lot more power to run stable at 4.0GHz, which isn't quite to option for us as we already reach 1.5V just to get the system stable at 3.95GHz. 



As for the memory overclock, our Apacer Panther Rage Illumination DDR4 kit doesn't seem to be doing that well on the Ryzen 5 setup. We were able to run the kit at 3466MHz and 3333MHz respectively on the Intel Core i7 7700K and i7 7600K powered setup, but the maximum frequency we can achieve on the Ryzen 5 setup is 2933MHz. 

Of course, this doesn't mean that the Ryzen 5 CPU doesn't overclock well. There are overclockers who are able to achieve results that are a few times better than ours and just like Intel, skills and silicon luck still plays an important role here.

Final Thoughts

Other than the improved single threaded performance (even though it's still not as good as Intel), the multi-threaded performance on both Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400 can go easily do better, else on par with Intel's CPU that falls in the same price range.

Of course, we are well aware that the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400 doesn't overclock as good as the K SKU from Intel, but this doesn't actually make the Ryzen CPU inferior compared to Intel's.

If you remember the claims of AMD Ryzen CPU aren't meant for gaming from certain parties, our gaming performance tests here pretty much trashed that claim. While it's true that there are few titles that don't perform as good as the result on Intel platform, do note that these games have yet to receive any performance optimization update from the game developers. With AMD now working closely with renown game developers out there, you can pretty much expect for more AMD Ryzen optimized updates and releases in the near future that will run just as good as the Intel platform.

As most of you would have already known, unlocked multipliers, memory overclocking are some of the luxuries that are only available if you're willing to pay more for Intel's K SKU processors and the high-end tier motherboards that will probably cost you almost RM2000, and that's only the CPU and motherboard alone. Unlike Intel, AMD doesn't lock these features away from its mid-tier CPU and motherboards.

At the price of RM1039 and RM819, it's not hard for us to decide whether or not to recommend the Ryzen 5 1600 and 1400. The Ryzen 5 1600 is an awesome choice to settle down with if you have a slightly better budget to spare, else, the Ryzen 5 1400 isn't a bad choice as well - not to mention that you can save quite a few hundred bucks as well to go for better memory, graphics, etc for your system.

 

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