Over the course of last year, AMD did some serious course correction with the release of its Ryzen line of processors, offering up its first real competition to Intels market-dominating power in years. But the underdog chip company isnt stopping there. It has announced its second-generation Ryzen processors for desktops that look to improve on the previous generation and keep the momentum going for AMDs comeback. AMD isnt announcing full details for the new Ryzen chips just yet — those will come on April 19th, the same day they launch — but the company is offering some information along with preorders, which open today. There are four new second-generation Ryzen chips out next week: a pair of eight-core, 16-thread Ryzen 7 models, and two six-core, 12-thread Ryzen 5 chips. Leading the pack is the $329 Ryzen 7 2700X, clocked at 3.7GHz with a boost to 4.3GHz, along with the slightly cheaper and less powerful Ryzen 7 2700, which costs $299 and is clocked at 3.2GHz (with a boost to up to 4.1GHz). For the Ryzen 5 models, theres the Ryzen 5 2600X, which costs $229 and runs at 3.6GHz (with a boost to 4.2GHz) and the Ryzen 5 2600, which costs $199 is clocked at 3.4GHz, which can be boosted to 3.9GHz. All four processors come with an AMD Wraith cooling unit free in the box. Thats different from last years models, which only included them on higher-end chips, so its is a nice bonus. AMD is sticking with its AM4 socket, which means that youll be able to slot the new Ryzen chips on your existing motherboard. The company has also announced a new AMD X470 chipset that will work with the new chips, adding a new AMD StoreMI feature that allows you to combine SSD storage with older hard drives into a single, faster, virtual disk.
The $329 Ryzen 7 2700X is its new flagship. With last year's Ryzen processors, AMD made a grand re-entry into the world of high-performance desktop computing. Now its improving on those designs with its second-generation Ryzen chips, which are a bit faster and more efficient. And, due to fan demand, AMD is also throwing in free "Wraith" coolers with every CPU. The big takeaway this year: AMD is in an even better place to compete with Intel. The highest end Ryzen model is the eight-core Ryzen 7 2700X, which replaces the 1800X and 1700X from last year (honestly they weren't that different). With a base clock of 3.7GHz, and a boost speed of 4.3Ghz, it's faster than the 1800X, which ran between 3.6Ghz and 4Ghz. The new chip is also a much better deal at $329, compared with the $399 and $499 launch prices of the 1700X and 1800X. In comparison, Intel's six-core i7-8700K sells for around $350. At the more affordable end, there's the six-core Ryzen 5 2600, which will go for $199. It's clocked between 3.4Ghz and 3.9GHz, and it should be a solid competitor to Intel's similarly priced Core i5-8500. The new chips are built on AMD's 12 nanometer Zen+ architecture, so you can think of them as a slight upgrade over last year's models. Its true platform followup, Zen 2, is expected to debut next year. 8AMD is keeping full details about the new Zen chips under wraps until their April 19th launch. But it did reveal a few tidbits: They'll run on its new X470 AM4 chipset, and they'll support its StoreMI technology, which can speed up disk performance by linking together SSDs, traditional hard disks and RAM.