AMD had us hyped with the introduction of new APUs (Accelerated Processing Unit) in the market. These will be our budget champions because they will enable everyone to get into PC gaming without much compromise in terms of value and performance.
Mid-2017 was practically a terrible time for PC gamers looking into building a decent gaming PC because graphics cards and memory kits became very expensive but with these new APUs, everyone can build a good starting foundation for their gaming PC.
What are APUs? The AMD Accelerated Processing Units (APU) are a mash up of both Central Processing Unit (CPU) and Graphics Processing Unit (GPU) on a single die, enabling users to have graphical processing even without a dedicated graphics card. AMD is offering us this as an all-in-one package: Quad-core CPUs with Radeon RX Vega Graphics.
Let’s be realistic though, the APUs will deliver good CPU performance but we can’t expect much in terms of graphic quality settings and resolutions in gaming since the integrated Vega Graphics are basically trimmed down to fit in the APU package.
To add on to that, the integrated Vega graphics doesn’t have a dedicated memory so the APUs will have to borrow memory from the system and it will be a major indicator of graphical performance.
By default, the Vega Graphics will borrow 1GB from your system but you can increase it up to 2GB. It will leave you with less RAM to work with the rest of your system. It is also recommended to use fast memory, something up to 3200MHz for the best outcome.
It is also important to take note that if you’re out in the market buying a motherboard for your new APU, do take note that not all existing AM4 motherboards will work right off the bat. You need to make sure that the BIOS firmware is updated to the latest version.
Usually they will have stickers on the box indicating that they are. If not, you can request from AMD a previous generation Athlon CPU so you can flash a new BIOS firmware.
So with that aside, let’s see what we’ve got.
Both products fits nicely in their Ryzen packaging which is similar to all other Ryzen products, but they have a distinct silver label on top indicating the inclusion of the RX Vega graphics.
Both APUs comes with the same Wraith Stealth cooler which features a 92mm fan and no RGB. The Wraith Stealth is rated for CPUs with a 65w TDP which will be enough for regular use but we wish they could’ve just put in the slightly larger Wraith Spire for more overclocking headroom to be able to squeeze out more performance from the APUs without having to invest on an aftermarket cooler.
Also included in the APUs are Ryzen 3/5 stickers and a Radeon Graphics sticker.
Page 2: Specifications and Gaming Performance
Page 3: Overclocking and Conclusion