AMD has today launched the first of its next-generation Ryzen microprocessors that, it says, will offer better performance at half the price of comparable Intel offerings.
The company will mimic Intel's chip families, with the high-end Ryzen 7 line competing with the Intel Core i7, the mid-market Ryzen 5 with the Intel Core i5, and the budget-priced Ryzen 3 with Intel's Core i3.
But AMD was keen to launch the new microprocessor range with three eight-core, 16 thread Ryzen 7 parts.
The top-of-the-range Ryzen 7 1800X will cost less than half of the over-clockable, £999.99 Core i7-6900K and, according to AMD, will comfortably outperform it as well.
AMD CEO Dr Lisa Su brandished benchmarks that indicated that it was capable of performing Cinebench R15 multi-threaded and Handbrake-based video transcoding nine per cent faster than its more expensive rival, while offering "comparable" performance for 4K gaming.
Offering a base clock speed of 3.6GHZ and a boost clock speed of 4GHz, the device is priced at $499 in the US, and will probably weigh-in at around £450-£480 in the UK. Alongside the Ryzen 7 1800X, AMD also launched today the Ryzen 7 1700X and the Ryzen 7 1700 at $399 and $329 respectively.
|Product||Model||Base clock (GHz)||Boost clock (GHz)||TDP (watts)||Cooler||Price (USD)|
|Ryzen 7||1700||3.0||3.7||65||Wraith Spire||$329|
Retailers will start taking pre-orders today, with Ryzen 7 devices being formally unveiled on Thursday next week - it's unclear whether they will be available from then, however.
"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 Su.
She added: "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."
AMD claims that the flagship Ryzen 7 1800X is the world's best-performing eight-core desktop microprocessor, while the Ryzen 7 1700 is the world's lowest-power eight-core desktop processor.
The devices launched today are intended for PC gamers, creators and animators, and enthusiasts who want to buy or build the most powerful systems that they can, claimed the company.
The Ryzen 5 and Ryzen 3 will be formally launched later this year.
For AMD, 2017 will be a make-or-break year, with the company losing money in recent years as it has been seen to trail Intel technologically. Ryzen is intended to overturn that perception and inject some new competition into the market for PC and server microprocessors.
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