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Review of the AMD Athlon 240GE, 220GE and 200GE in the right place at the right time

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Recent familiarity with processors Ryzen 5 2500X and Ryzen 3 2300X showed that AMD considers it necessary to strengthen their own lineup of strong budget proposals that could attract buyers in the era of scarcity of available processors competitor. Such innovations do well to solve their problem, proving a more than worthy alternatives for processors the Core i3 series. But only two new products AMD is not going to be limited. Along the way, the company has taken the offensive and in the lower price segment, releasing even more cheap chips capable of inflicting a blow to the popular “hyperpnea” (Pentium Hyper-Threading). So on the market appeared Athlon two hundredth series – new dual-core processors for the platform Socket AM4 with a price of less than $100.

It is worth Recalling that in the model number of AMD’s budget Athlon Socket AM4-performance existed before. For example, a fairly widespread Quad-core Athlon X4 950. However, this CPU is based on outdated design Bristol Ridge microarchitecture Excavator. Because of this he is not able to compete with the members of the family of Pentium in performance and is only of interest because it can be “plug connector”, which allows to exploit the AM4 Socket-a system till the moment it will be installed full processor family Ryzen.

New Athlon for that matter much more modern and therefore more interesting. And although they again are greatly reduced versions of the chips in this time to create used current-based Raven Ridge. For this reason, such proposals can be considered as an alternative to the current Pentium Gold. Having a price from $55 to $75, fresh budget processors from AMD can, as budget Intel chips, to offer two computing cores capable to execute four threads, and a relatively decent graphics core.

It should be understood that the main advantage of the new Athlon is not so much in their characteristics, but in the fact that they are really can be bought at a reasonable price. The fact that the issue with the backorders of their Intel decides to “top-down”. This means that firstly, the orders for expensive chips series Core i7 and Core i9 and also of the application server market. Core i3, Pentium, and Celeron are thus at a disadvantage: they are produced and delivered by a residual principle, and the cheaper the processor, the less of a chance to meet him in the sale. Eventually this led to the fact that the members of the series Pentium Gold or disappeared entirely from store shelves or sold at prices significantly higher than normal. In such circumstances, the new Athlon to be almost the only variant of the processor on which it is advisable to pay attention to the price category “below $100”.

In fact, thanks to the new Athlon, AMD has already managed to win several large OEM contracts: low-cost model of office personal computers, it is highly marketable. Cheap processors for such systems are needed in large quantities, and Athlon has offered an easy way out in a situation when Pentium Gold to buy almost impossible. However, we are interested in a slightly different question: can we rely on the Athlon series of two hundred individual users looking for an affordable option for the home system? On the one hand, Athlon — almost the same as Pentium and Gold. However, on the other – those CPUs higher clock rate and better is the case with single-threaded performance. So to say that terms of speed Athlon 200GE, 220GE or 240GE is almost the same as “hyperpen”, need any confirmation. We’ll try to get testing of the new AMD business and gaming applications.

#New Athlon in detail

The overall strategy of AMD is that the company tries to offer processors with more developed multithreading than similar price models from Intel. This is true for almost all market segments, but not for the lower. All three models Athlon two hundred series have only two active nuclei Zen technology-enabled SMT. This means that from the point of view of the number of executable threads, they are no different from the current modifications of Pentium Gold.

Besides, the Athlon has no support turboradial. No technology Core Performance Boost or even more of the XFR/XFR2 are not available, and hence, at any load they operate at a constant clock frequency. By the way, this frequency is relatively low: the Junior model, Athlon 200GE, operates at 3.2 GHz and older, Athlon 240GE – on 3.5 GHz. There is another significant loss: AMD in their Junior processors cut the cache and memory controller. Volume cache of the third level reduced to 4 MB and a maximum supported memory DDR4-2666. And in this case we are talking not about the formal, but the actual limit: required to traktowania memory at a higher frequency multipliers are simply not available, and to overclock the DDR4 SDRAM will not work.

Athlon 200GE

Athlon 200GE

 
Athlon 220GE

Athlon 220GE

 
Athlon 240GE

Athlon 240GE

But the new Athlon can boast of a very moderate power consumption and heat dissipation. Their thermal Suite is defined by the value of the 35 watts that’s one of the most economical AMD processors for desktops. Such a characterization of TDP can boast except Ryzen E-series, which the company officially supplying only to OEMs. Here AMD was able to outperform even Pentium Gold: heat pack budget Intel is 58 watts. It is therefore not surprising that in the boxed versions of Athlon two hundred versions come with a simple aluminum cooler c 65-mm fan, which causes persistent Association with cooling systems under the classical era Athlon XP Socket A.

An important distinction of modern processors Athlon two hundredth series from those Athlon X4, AMD has offered to date, is that now they have a graphics core. The basis of Athlon 200GE, 220GE and 240GE are design Raven Ridge and the same 14-nm semiconductor core, as in processors Ryzen 3 2200G and Ryzen 5 2400G. However, the performance of the integrated GPU is significantly undervalued. The manufacturer says about the graphics level GeForce Vega 3, which is converted in three computing module with 192 unified shaders, 12 texture units and 4 ROP units. By the way, this configuration provides the GPU and the youngest mobile Ryzen 3 2200U.

The characteristics of the new Athlon fit into the existing range of cheap AMD processors in the following way.

Design Cores/ Threads Base frequency, GHz Turbocheetah, GHz L3 cache MB Memory Graph. the core Lines PCIe TDP, watts
Ryzen 3 2300X Pinnacle Ridge 4/4 3,5 4,0 8 DDR4‑2933 No 24 65
Ryzen 3 2200G Raven Ridge 4/4 3,5 3.7 V 4 DDR4‑2933 Vega 8 16 65
Ryzen 3 1300X Summit Ridge 4/4 3,5 3.7 V 8 DDR4‑2666 No 24 65
Ryzen 3 1200 Summit Ridge 4/4 3,1 3,4 8 DDR4‑2666 No 24 65
Athlon 240GE Raven Ridge 2/4 3,5 4 DDR4‑2666 Vega 3 12 35
Athlon 220GE Raven Ridge 2/4 3,4 4 DDR4‑2666 Vega 3 12 35
Athlon 200GE Raven Ridge 2/4 3,2 4 DDR4‑2666 Vega 3 12 35

In their marketing materials AMD Athlon contrasts the two hundredth series intelliskin Pentium Gold. However, the fact that they can offer comparable performance to something other than graphics, there is quite reasonable doubt. Where they come from, it should be clear from the following table, where the mapped features of the budget AMD and Intel processors.

AMD Athlon Intel Pentium Gold
Cores/threads 2/4 2/4
Microarchitecture Zen Coffee Lake
Platform Socket AM4 LGA1151v2
Frequency A 3.2-3.5 GHz The 3.7-3.9 GHz
L2-cache 512 KB per core 256 KB per core
L3-cache 4 MB 4 MB
SIMD instructions AVX/AVX2 SSE 4.1/4.2
Integrated graphics Vega 3 (192 SP) UHD 630/610 (23/12 EU)
GPU frequency 1000 MHz 1050-1100 MHz
Memory DDR4-2666 DDR4-2400
TDP 35 W 58 W
The official price $55-$75 $64-$86

The new Athlon is a relatively low clock frequency. However, but they offer lower heat dissipation and, apparently, more powerful graphics, which outperforms Intel UHD 610 Graphics (GT1) and certainly no worse than the UHD 630 Graphics (GT2).

However, here you need to make three significant reservations. The first relates to prices. The fact that due to problems with the supply of the Pentium Gold it is impossible to buy at the “right” price, which is indicated in the table above. While Junior Athlon 200GE actually buy for 3 thousand rubles, Pentium Gold g5400 is cheaper than 5 thousand in sales now is not to find, not to mention the fact that the Pentium Gold G5500 model with a production-level integrated GPU GT2 will cost from 6 thousand and above.

The second point is about acceleration. Unexpectedly turned out, the Athlon generation Raven Ridge can be configured to work at higher than declared by the manufacturer, clock frequency. AMD itself of that opportunity does not advertise and sometimes even denied, but the fact is that the new BIOS for the vast majority AM4 Socket-a motherboards, which are based on AGESA version 1.0.0.6, I suggest really working the function to change the multiplier frequency. We cannot guarantee that this opportunity will not be blocked in the future, but at the moment the situation is such that the working frequency of Athlon 200GE, 220GE and 240GE can be increased by 10-20% rather simple manipulations.

Have Athlon 200GE, 220GE and 240GE third feature. The AMD approach to the formation of inexpensive processors is somewhat different from interesnogo. In Athlon, the company reduced the number of cores and compute units of the GPU, but did not turn off any of the properties of the microarchitecture. So, for example, budget Socket AM4 processors continue to support AVX instructions, while the Pentium Gold in their execution impossible.

In conclusion, we should say that support Athlon 200GE, 220GE and 240GE have all motherboards for Socket AM4, which can operate with Raven Ridge. In other words, the problem to find a platform for these processors will not occur. And here it is appropriate to recall the existence of a set of logic A320, which AMD was designed for the most budget configurations. Thanks to him, the prices of motherboards with Socket AM4 start with a mark of 3.5 thousand rubles, which allows you to create highly available platform with modern components AMD. And we are talking about is really relevant boards that can offer support for NVMe drives, USB 3.1 ports and versions of video outputs with support for 4K resolution.

#Acceleration

Given the fact that the Athlon two hundred series are constructed on the same semiconductor crystal as their older brothers Ryzen Ryzen 2200G 3 and 5 2400G, some unexpectedly high overclocking results is not expected. We checked all three arrived in our lab processor — Athlon 200GE, 220GE and 240GE, and the maximum acceleration for them was achieving a frequency of 4.0 GHz. To work stably in this condition are two processors of the three – 200GE and 220GE. Senior representative in the series could only please steady performance at 3.9 GHz.

Therefore, in practical tests we concentrated on those instances that were able to conquer the symbolic threshold. However, the increase in frequency in any case, did not require any substantial effort: to achieve the stability needed just a little (to 1.35-1,375) increase in processor supply voltage.

The tests we carried out with our usual cooler Noctua NH-U14S, but it is clear that the restriction in the dispersal here is not the heat of the processor, and the capabilities of the silicon. Therefore, similar results can be obtained those users who prefer air cooling easier. However, with the standard aluminum cooler 4-gigagertsevogo frequency, obviously, will not succeed. In this case, you will have to limit ourselves to a weaker market.

Also it is worth mentioning that cheap motherboards on base of chipset A320 do not support overclocking at all. To increase the frequency of the desired charge on the chipset B350, and they are a bit more expensive.

Unfortunately, the acceleration allows to eliminate just one of the shortcomings of the new Athlon – their low clock frequency. But two other negative factors remain in force. First, the Athlon memory will still run at maximum frequency DDR4-2666 – around this border have a budget AMD is impossible. Second, Athlon allocated for maintenance of the primary PCIe slot is only 4 lanes of PCI Express 3.0. And this means that the discrete graphics card installed in a system with an Athlon 200GE, 220GE and 240GE, will run through heavily cut-down on bandwidth bus. However, some motherboard this birth defect still able to fix it by translating the graphics slot in the higher speed mode of PCI Express 3.0 x8.

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PC / Laptop

Review ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI: Micro-ATX hard boiled

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Our website is one of the few online resources in the Russian segment, which still pays attention to motherboards and has been tested on latest devices all present on our market for the producers. However, by going to the “motherboard” 3DNews, we will see that the last review of the motherboard form factor mATX, which you can use to build a really powerful gaming PC, came out in early 2017. Such payment to and acceleration was all right, and with reliability and functionality. Basically, if we are talking about reviews, in the test lab hosted ATX and mini-ITX solutions are the current trend. Meanwhile, there are Micro-ATX case, which is quite suitable for the solution of the given task — they are well-organized cooling and they are able to accommodate powerful hardware. Thing is, it turns out, for small: need payment — and one of the few options left will be ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI. About all the pros and cons of the device read in this review.

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS XI GENE

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI

#Specifications and packaging

The people series motherboards MAXIMUS GENE long dubbed the “Genicam”. Main features of the 11th version of “Eugene”, supporting processors, Coffee Lake (Refresh) that are listed in the table below.

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI
Supported processors Intel 9-th and 8-th generations (Core, Pentium and Celeron Gold) for LGA1151 platform-v2
Chipset Intel Z390 Express
Memory subsystem 2 x DIMM slots, up to 64 GB of DDR4-2133-4700 (OC)
Expansion slots 1 × PCI Express x16
1 × PCI Express x4
The storage interface 2 × M. 2 (Socket 3, 2242/2260/2280) with support for PCI Express x4
1 × DIMM.2 PCI Express x8
4 × SATA 6GB/s
RAID 0, 1, 10
LAN Intel I219V, 10/100/1000 Mbps
Wireless network Intel Wireless-AC 9560
Audio ROG SupremeFX (S1220A) 7.1 HD
Interfaces on the rear panel 1 × PS/2
1 × HDMI
1 × RJ-45
1 × optical S/PDIF
3 × USB 3.1 Gen2 Type A
1 × USB 3.1 Gen2 Type C
6 × USB 3.1 Gen1 Type A
2 × USB 2.0 Type A
5 × 3.5 mm audio
Form factor mATX
Price 23 000 rubles

The device is Packed in a small but colorful cardboard box. In addition to the cost, it was a lot of accessories, both useful and not:

  • user guide, all kinds of stickers, cardboard stand for the mug, as well as optical media with software and drivers;
  • external antenna for wireless communication module;
  • two custom SATA cable;
  • one extension cable to connect the RGB strip;
  • the additional screws to install the SSD;
  • Q-connector for easy connection of buttons of the housing;
  • ROG DIMM module.2, support the installation of two SSD.
 

#Design and capabilities

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI established on the basis of a full form factor mATX, in which each side of the printed circuit Board has a length of 244 mm. We focus on it because the budget segment is common to encounter devices that have an even more reduced printed circuit boards approaching the size rather to the mini-ITX format.

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS XI GENE

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS XI GENE

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI

Theoretically any Board form factor mATX allows you to unsolder the four expansion slots (compared to seven connectors from standard ATX). However, ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI includes just two ports, one of which — PEG, aka PCI Express x16 3.0. This connector is further reinforced. A makeshift metal frame called SafeSlot, according to ASUS, increases the strength of the port by 1.8 times under the load of fracture, and 1.6 times when the load on the pulling. Given the fact that “Jack” can realistically become the basis for a bench-bench, this strengthening PEG port clearly will not be superfluous, because sometimes a day has to switch the graphics card by 10 times and more.

Near to the CPU socket is a PCI Express x4 slot is four lines from the chipset, corresponding to the standard 3.0. The connector has no latch, so it can be set to anything — even video card. However, technologies like AMD CrossFire and NVIDIA SLI, consider the card does not support, so put here the graphics card makes no sense.

What PCI Express x4 wired, so to speak, the first is good. This fact, on the one hand, means that we can use in the system of a huge supercooler. So, no its Archon or Noctua NH-D15 does not overlap the main PEG port (as, however, and PCI Express x4).

Achilles ‘ heel ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI is considered close proximity of the two DIMM sockets to the CPU socket LGA1151-v2. The distance from the center of the socket until the first slot is only (!) 45 mm. This means that most tower coolers will block the DIMM ports required for installation of RAM. The Board supports the installation of ultra-fast modules of standard DDR4, which means that the system can use sets of RAM with extra large heat sinks, which moreover do not get along with supernumerary.

It is obvious that ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI “adapted” to the use of maintenance-free liquid cooling system, but here we catch the problems. So, the new “dropsy” NZXT Kraken X62, used in the stand also blocked the DIMM slots — because pipe and fittings this WITH the right. In the end had to deploy the new “Kraken” at 90 degrees, and this, dear readers, is the farm, because “water” has a lighted logo that implies a definite location (although the backlight can be disabled in the cooling device). So here you need a responsible approach to the selection of water cooling. For example, AMD A80 you have such problems will not arise.

By the way, the number of DIMM slots, I have no complaints. ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI is a device that will be used along with pricey components, therefore with very high probability the system will install the dual channel kit 32 GB. Install — and forget about the lack of RAM the next many years.

The DIMM slots are soldered so close to the CPU socket because of the attempts of engineers to ASUS to cram followed by another three connectors. Immediately behind the ports under the RAM are two M. 2 slots — they have a combined metal cap, which plays simultaneously the role of passive cooling. And behind them — DIMM connector.2 to install a special expansion card that is firmly entrenched in the top motherboards MAXIMUS series. Read more about it below.

M. 2 ports can install two SSD form factors 2242, 2260 and 2280 — each connector will only work in PCI Express 3.0 x4 (lines — chipset). They are covered with a large aluminum heatsink. He was, incidentally, can be removed only if the slot PCI Express x16 graphics card is not installed. To do this, Unscrew the two screws.

Hindsight, as you know, we are all strong. If I were the engineer at ASUS, the DIMM slots are pushed to the place under M. 2 drives, and the slots for the SSD ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI divided: one mounted above the PCI Express x4 or right of it, redoing chipsety radiator and moving the slot for the batteries; the second M. 2 would make vertical. Actually, the way it is implemented, for example, in ASUS Prime X299-Deluxe. Yes, that would be not so beautiful, but, in my opinion, more practical.

And still on the Board illuminated the entire right side and a large icon with the ROG on the plastic plug I/O panel. Also ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI is equipped with two 4-pin connectors for connecting led strips and other RGB peripherals.

In the DIMM slots.2 is a ROG branded motherboard DIMM.2. For the first time this design feature the “Republican” motherboards came from ASUS Maximus IX Apex, which was published in 2017. To the slot supplied eight lines PCI Express 3.0 from the CPU. Therefore, if we use it, the only PEG-device port automatically operates in the x8 mode.

The design of the DIMM card.2 changed again, and the new variant is passive cooling for SSD. The Board itself allows you to install two M. 2-drive up to a length of 110 mm each.

Due to this configuration, the M. 2 ports, in particular, the motherboard has only four SATA connectors 6 GB/s. But the gaming PC, a number pad would be sufficient.

ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI is equipped with seven 4-pin connectors to plug the fans. For mATX Board is a great figure! In this part of connector (five) highlighted in black — they allow you to regulate the speed of not only the “Carlson” with a shim. Therefore, there is no need to use additional device like a fan controller, or pick a case with a built-in controller for the fans. Beauty! The remaining two connectors — white, they can’t lower the speed. They can “hang”, such as fans with originally low speeds.

There are 4-pin connectors, generally successfully. For example, we use a small Tower case and a two-piece DLC. Pump and fans “dropsy” are connected to the top row of connectors. Corpus impeller, located on the rear wall, to the socket near the PCI Express x4 slot, and the front Cabinet fan — port W_PUMP located on the bottom and deployed at 90 degrees. This port will be useful to those who collect custom DLC along with ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI tank with a pump usually mounted in the lower part of the Tower housing.

Yes, all the connectors are located at the bottom of the PCB, deployed 90 degrees. This is because the video card with a three slot cooler will simply cover that area of the motherboard. Interesting ports internal I note the presence W_IN/OUT W_Flow — these connectors are monitoring the temperature of the refrigerant and the speed of the liquid flow in the cooling system. And yet the Board there is a connector Node is required to connect a compatible power supply. If you do, you will be able to control the fan speed of the PSU, as well as to follow the input and output voltages. The list of compatible hardware can be found here.

Panel I / o Board is equipped with an integrated plug. It is quite tightly Packed the various ports — in addition to the five analog audio jacks and optical S/P-DIF output, it is possible to detect the display’s HDMI output, combo PS/2 port (still needed during extreme overclocking, since the USB controller in a stressful environment can “fall off”), set of USB ports, including a new-fangled Type-C, Gigabit network, and even two buttons ClearCMOS and USB BIOS Flashback.

Wired network connection is created using the Intel I219-V and wireless — by Wireless-AC 9560, which, in addition to the standard Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac with a capacity of up to 1733 Mbps, and supports Bluetooth 5.0.

Sound in ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI, as in many other ROG-boards, meets the audio codec, Supreme FX, which is based on the familiar Realtek chip ALC1220A. The manufacturer claims that he gets “exclusive version” of this chip, therefore, the name of the second letter A. In comparison with the “standard” Realtek ALC1220 the ratio of “signal to noise” from “elite,” 113 vs 108 dB. Traditionally, expensive boards in the composition of the audio included high-quality Nichicon capacitors and operational amplifier RC4580 OPA1688 and production Texas Instruments. The audio chip is shielded, and all elements of the sound system is separated from the other components of the PCB strip, which does not conduct current.

All series motherboards MAXIMUS suitable for overclocking and ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI and for extreme overclocking. Therefore, the Board has several overclocking “uluchshayzerov” that make life easier for young and not so young enthusiasts. Buttons power and reset, as well as the POST indicator signals it is easy to notice. And in the right part of the PCB there are indicators QLED that demonstrate, at what stage is the computer is booted. There are also ReTry button (instantly reboots the system) and Safe Boot (runs stand with secure settings). Add to this the switches MemOK! Pause (the PC is put on pause so the user can change parameters during execution of the benchmark) and Slow Mode (instant reset CPU multiplier to 8x, to accommodate the computer severe tests). Finally, in the bottom of the device are the contact track ProbeIt, allows using the DMM to measure the exact parameters of the main stress system. It is really unfortunate. When you use graphics cards with three slot cooler for her not to get close (or get close, but then you have to work a soldering iron). Anyway to run the probe near the rotating fan 3D accelerator — so.

 

The power of the CPU is made by two 8-pin connectors. Don’t forget that power supply with this cable set do not occur very often, and basically we are talking about powerful devices — watts on the 700 and more. However, the additional power to the processor is necessary only in extreme cases.

At the core of the Converter power supply ASUS ROG MAXIMUS GENE XI is a PWM controller ASP1405I. It may seem that the Board is equipped with 12 phases, but it is not. Each channel is responsible for the operation the CPU is equipped with two inductors and two assemblies IR3555. Two single-phase “look out” for iGPU. Looks power Converter very powerful.

During the cooling of field-effect transistors meets an array of a pair of aluminum radiators is of medium size, combined, however, copper deplorable. About how effectively the system works cooling the VRM area in the acceleration, I will tell you next.

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The Intel Core i5-9400F: fake Coffee Lake Refresh

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Despite the obvious difficulties with the production of 14-nm chips in sufficient quantities, Intel continues to gradually expand the lineup of Core processors, the ninth generation, known under the code name Coffee Lake Refresh. However, given it to her with varying degrees of success. That is, formally in the lineup really added new products, but in retail they appear very reluctant, and some models presented immediately after the New year novelties have been unable to check in the stores until now.

However, based on official data, now for the platform LGA1151v2 there are already at least nine desktop models of the Core pertaining to the thousandth of the series, including processors with four, six and eight cores. Moreover, the composition of this family includes not only the obvious representatives with predictable characteristics, but also unexpected CPU that is different from all predecessors ideologically. We are talking about CPUs F-series mass desktop chips, the specifications of which is not stated integrated graphics core.

Surprising in their appearance that these deals have expanded the range of consumer Intel for the first time in the last eight years, during which the company offered for mass segment only solution with integrated graphics. But now something has changed and the microprocessor giant has been forced to revise his principles. And we even know that: failures in planning and difficulties with the commissioning process with a 10-nm standards has led to a serious lack of Intel on the market, to mitigate which the company is trying by all means. The release of processors without integrated graphics – one of the rather apparent measures aimed at achieving this goal. Thanks to it the manufacturer has been able to set a serial processor previously considered defective semiconductor workpiece with a corrupted graphics core, which even at eight Coffee Lake Refresh “biting” up to 30 % of the area is 174 mm crystal. In other words, such a measure capable of increasing the yield and significantly reduce waste.

However, if Intel is the point in the release of processors F-series is quite obvious, that Benet from the emergence of such offers consumers the issue is very controversial. The chosen manufacturer of the tactic is that trimmed at its core, the processors are implemented without any discounts, for the same price as their “full” counterparts. In order to fully understand this situation, we decided to take the tests one of the Core lineup of the ninth generation, devoid of the integrated graphics and try to find his hidden advantages.

As the object for investigation was selected as Core i5-9400F Junior six-core CPU generation Coffee Lake Refresh. This chip of particular interest: its predecessor, the Core i5-8400, at the time, was very popular thanks to very attractive ratio of price and performance. Officially announced four months ago, Core i5-9400 (no F in the name) offers a slightly higher frequency such at the same price, but selling him is practically impossible. But the Core i5-9400F represented on the shelves everywhere, and, moreover, since the deficit of this model does not apply, its real value in retail as close as possible to recommended. However, this does not Core i5-9400F a good option for “basic” configurations automatically, because now AMD in the same price category offers six-core processors Ryzen 5, which, in contrast to the Core i5 series have the support for multithreading (SMT). That is why today’s quiz promises to be especially meaningful: it must give an answer to several questions and clearly show whether the Core i5-9400F chance to repeat the success of the legendary Core i5-8400.

#Lineup Refresh Coffee Lake

To date, there have been two waves of announcements of processors that are conditionally related to the generation of Coffee Lake Refresh. Despite the fact that such a CPU is largely similar to its predecessors from the family of Coffee Lake, Intel refer them to the ninth generation of Core numbers and indices, start with the number 9. And if the Core i7 and Core i9 this distinction may be partly justified, because they first obtained an eight compute cores, the new processors series Core i5 and Core i3 got an increase in model numbers for the most part. In fact, they only offer higher clock frequency.

While no improvements on the level microarchitecture can not speak at all. And surprise, to be honest, it doesn’t matter. Intel practiced the concept of development is that the profound changes in processors attached to the improvement of production technologies. Therefore, the delay in the implementation of the 10-nm process technology lead to the fact that we once again have to deal with the Skylake microarchitecture, released in 2015. However, what is surprising for some reason Intel does not seek to change features that do not require any noticeable change. For example, the official Coffee Lake Refresh continue to rely on dual DDR4-2666 memory, while AMD has repeatedly adds to its processors support high-speed modes, reaching in the latest versions of mobile Raven Ridge already up to DDR4-3200. The only thing that made Intel, is increased up to 128 GB of memory supported in systems based on Coffee Lake Refresh.

However, despite the absence of changes in microarchitecture, Intel still manages to produce quite an interesting model, extensive methods – increasing the number of cores and clock frequency. The first wave of announcements Coffee Lake Refresh, which took place in October last year, brought three flagship overclocking of the processor, to conquer new frontiers of performance: OCTA core Core i9-9900K and Core i7-9700K, as well as six-core Core i5-9600K. With the second wave of the Christmas list for the latest processors added another six CPU easier. In the end, the full nomenclature of the Refresh Coffee Lake began to look like the following.

Cores/ threads Base frequency, GHz Turbocheetah, GHz L3 cache MB iGPU IGPU frequency, GHz Memory TDP, watts Price
Core i9‑9900K 8/16 3,6 5,0 16 UHD 630 1,2 DDR4‑2666 95 $488
Core i9‑9900KF 8/16 3,6 5,0 16 No DDR4‑2666 95 $488
Core i7‑9700K 8/8 3,6 4,9 12 UHD 630 1,2 DDR4‑2666 95 $374
Core i7‑9700KF 8/8 3,6 4,9 12 No DDR4‑2666 95 $374
Core i5‑9600K 6/6 3.7 V 4,6 9 UHD 630 1,15 DDR4‑2666 95 $262
Core i5‑9600KF 6/6 3.7 V 4,6 9 No DDR4‑2666 95 $262
Core i5‑9400 6/6 2,9 4,1 9 UHD 630 1,05 DDR4‑2666 65 $182
Core i5‑9400F 6/6 2,9 4,1 9 No DDR4‑2666 65 $182
Core i3‑9350KF 4/4 4,0 4,6 8 No DDR4‑2400 91 $173

The main part of the processors added to the released in the first place overclocking K-models later, consists of chips, deprived of the integrated graphics core. Technically Core i9-9900KF, Core i7-9700KF and Core i5-9600KF are based on exactly the same semiconductor Foundation, and have absolutely the same characteristics as the Core i9-9900K, Core i7-9700K and Core i5-9600K, differing only in the fact that they don’t offer the built-in GPU, in hardware blocks at the production stage.

But the list of innovations of the second wave can be seen and indeed a new model. First is the Core i3-9350KF is the only Coffee Lake Refresh Quad core processor with an unlocked multiplier. If you close your eyes to the lack of built-in GPU, it is possible to calculate an updated version of the Core i3-8350K, which was accelerated by adding Turbo Boost technology 2.0 and the newfound ability of automatic overclocking to 4.6 GHz.

Another more-or-less full new in the second wave it is possible to calculate Core i5-9400 and devoid of the integrated graphics Core i9 fellow-9400F. The value of these models lies in the fact that with their help, Intel has significantly lowered the cost of the Junior six-core Coffee Lake Refresh, allowing you to use the latest generation CPU in the configuration baseline. However, formal differences between Core i5-9400 from last year’s hit, Core i5-8400, not so much. Clock frequency increased by only 100 MHz, which is likely due to the desire of the microprocessor giant to leave your younger shestiyaderny within the 65-watt thermal package. As a result, the gap in the maximum frequency in turbo mode between the senior and the Junior six-core processors in the family Coffee Lake Refresh increased to 500 MHz, while in the generation of Coffee Lake it was only 300 MHz.

Judging from the specs, it seems that trump the new Core i5-9400 and Core i5-9400F on the background of the old Core i5-8400 really nothing. However, the specifications in this case do not give quite the full picture. During the announcement of the first Coffee Lake Refresh, Intel said, including about the advantages of an indirect nature. For example, for a new generation of chips was promised a change of the internal thermal interface: polymer place of thermal paste was to take a highly bestlady solder. But does this apply to the Junior six-core Core processors, the ninth generation? It turns out that not always.

#Details about Core i5-9400F

It so happened that, releasing the Coffee Lake Refresh processors, Intel raked in the pile, several different variants of semiconductor crystals with process technology 14 nm++, and not all of them are in fact new. Based on Core processors, the ninth generation may lie as semiconductor crystals, designed for them specifically, and relatively old versions of the silicon, which was used extensively including in the processors of the eighth generation ranked as family Coffee Lake.

In particular, at the moment aware of the existence of at least four stoppingof crystals that are set in a certain mass the Core of thousandth of the series:

  • P0 – the only “honest” option of the crystal, which is really unfair to make Coffee Lake Refresh. This crystal has eight cores and is used in overclocking the Intel Core i9-9900K, Core i7-9700K and Core i5-9600K in their F-variations of the Core i9-9900KF, Core i7-9700KF and Core i5-9600KF, as well as the Intel Core i5-9400;
  • U0 – six-core crystal used in processors Coffee Lake, that is, in the eighth generation Core. Now it is used to create a six-core Core i5-9400F;
  • B0 the Quad – core chip, which is used for the Intel Core i3-9350K. This version of silicon, too, came into the Quad-core processor straight out of the Coffee Lake, including the Core i3-8350K;
  • R0 – a new stepping of a crystal, in which it is assumed will be the senior Core processors, the ninth generation, starting in may. Currently, the serial CPU does not occur, and therefore no specific information about its features and causes no.

Thus, the Core i5-9400F about which we are talking in this review, is the black sheep: one of a kind processor that may be internal to the device is different from the other six-core and eight-core counterparts-generation Coffee Lake Refresh. Strictly speaking, it is not a stripped-down or time-lapse version of the Core i5-9600K or Core i5-9400, and a slightly overclocked variant of the old Core i5-8400 with disabled graphics core.

And I must say, this is manifested not only in the screenshots diagnostic utilities that show for the Core i5-9400F old stepping U0 instead of a new P0. In Core i5-9400F in fact, there is no innovation peculiar to Coffee Lake Refresh. In particular, the Assembly of these chips soldering the die to the heat-spreading lid is not applied, and the internal thermal interface is exactly the same polymer compound used in processors Coffee Lake.

Core i5-9400F и Core i5-9600K без крышки. Фото momomo_us

Core i5-9400F and Core i5-9600K without a lid. Photo momomo_us

In addition, the Core i5-9400F, unlike the rest of a new generation of Coffee Lake Refresh going on the PCB with thinner the PCB is the same as used for conventional Coffee Lake.

Слева направо: Core i5-8400, Core i5-9400F и Core i5-9600K

From left to right: Core i5-8400, Core i5-9400F and Core i5-9600K

And moreover, even the shape of the heat-spreading lid Core i5-9400F gives the relationship of the Core CPU of the eighth generation. Because purebred Coffee Lake Refresh cover has changed.

Слева направо: Core i5-8400, Core i5-9400F и Core i5-9600K

From left to right: Core i5-8400, Core i5-9400F and Core i5-9600K

In other words, there is no doubt that the Core i5-9400F – in fact, no Coffee Lake Refresh and rejection of previous-generation processors with disabled graphics core. And this applies to all wholly supplied at present, the serial Core i5-9400F that largely explains the wide availability of these processors at a time when the mass supply of Coffee Lake Refresh others continue to experience significant problems. For example, formally announced simultaneously with the Core i5-9400F its “full” counterpart with integrated graphics UHD Graphics 630, which should be based on “fair” crystal stepping P0, in retail sales is still missing.

At the same time, the microprocessor giant doesn’t exclude the possibility of transfer Core i5-9400F on the “right” stepping P0 in the medium term. But it will happen, obviously, only when all accumulated in the warehouses of Coffee Lake with a defective integrated GPU will be successfully sold out.

However, for most users this fact of forgery of silicon crystals is unlikely to have any significance. Anyway, Core i5-9400F real shestiyadernik without support Hyper-Threading, which at any load is running at 100 MHz faster than its predecessor, Core i5-8400. This means that the frequency formula Core i5-9400F corresponds to $10 more expensive Core i5-8500.

Despite the fact that Core i5-9400F claimed comparatively low base frequency of 2.9 GHz, in reality this CPU is able to work much faster thanks to technology Turbo Boost 2.0. If enabled, the Multi-Core Enhancements (that is the default mode for the vast majority of motherboards) under full load, the Core i5-9400F able to keep the frequency of 3.9 GHz accelerating under load on one core to 4.1 GHz.

  Nominal frequency The maximum frequency Turbo Boost 2.0
1 core 2 cores 3 core 4 cores 5 cores 6 cores
Core i5-8400 2.8 GHz 4.0 GHz 3.9 GHz 3.9 GHz 3.9 GHz 3.8 GHz 3.8 GHz
Core i5-8500 3.0 GHz 4,1 GHz 4.0 GHz 4.0 GHz 4.0 GHz 3.9 GHz 3.9 GHz
Core i5-9400(F) 2.9 GHz 4,1 GHz 4.0 GHz 4.0 GHz 4.0 GHz 3.9 GHz 3.9 GHz

No overclocking capabilities in this speech, of course, is not. The most capable Core i5-9400F, for the maximum allowed in the technology Turbo Boost 2.0 frequency. And on motherboards with chipsets H370, B360 or H310 do not get to use and faster than DDR4-2666 memory. More speed modes available only on motherboards with older chipsets Z370 or Z390.

SOURCE

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