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AMD Ryzen 3 3300X & 3100 CPU Review

AMD’s four-core, eight-thread Ryzen 3 3100 and 3300X are clearly the final pieces to AMD’s Zen 2-based Ryzen 3000 puzzle. This sub-£120 area of the market is one in which Intel’s current generation line-up competed against AMD’s older architecture prior to today’s launch. Zen 2 is now affordable to budget system builders who simply want a basic yet proficient processor with modern architecture, reasonable frequencies, and the inherent benefits that the 7nm process node provides. Ryzen 3 3000 delivers on those fronts.

Strong gaming performance and productivity numbers that clearly punch above their weight are the overriding takeaways from the Ryzen 3 parts. The 3300X in particular looks to be a strong gaming option in this market segment thanks to its Zen 2 architecture, high out-of-the-box frequencies, and single CCX design.

Couple in the superb AM4 platform with cost effective motherboards, high-speed memory support, and unlocked multipliers across the board and the Ryzen 3 3100 and 3300X are clearly superior to Intel’s 9th Gen price competitors.

However, it is clear that the Zen+ Ryzen 5 1600 AF with its twelve processing threads is a value champion that remains impossible to beat at around £90-100. Even the newer, budget friendly Ryzen 3 chips with their £95-115 price tags and Zen 2 architecture cannot match the multi-threadedness of the 1600 AF. Of course, frequency advantages brought about by TSMC’s 7nm technology help the Ryzen 3 3300X and 3100 comfortably outperform the 1600 AF in lightly threaded tasks. Plus, the Zen 2 architecture is more efficient in other areas such as AVX2 performance.

And competing against the 1600 AF in gaming is a tough task for the new Zen 2 offerings. Ryzen 3 3300X is able to comfortably outperform the 1600 AF most of the time, thanks in large to its high out-of-the-box frequency coupled with the excellent Zen 2 architecture. The equally priced Ryzen 3 3100, however, has a far tougher time fighting against the sub-£100 Zen+ six-core in games.

Add the approaching launch of Intel’s rumoured four-core, eight-thread Comet Lake-S Core i3 processors and the budget CPU segment of the market is getting highly competitive all of a sudden. According to Intel’s 1KU pricing, those Intel chips should price roughly around the Ryzen 3 3300X level. It will be interesting to see Zen 2 versus Comet Lake-S fight it out on a basis with core, price, and frequency parity. Of course, the AM4 platform and upcoming B550 chipset motherboards could well be the deal-sealer in that battle, but we will have to wait and see.

For now, AMD’s Zen 2-based Ryzen 3 chips are welcomed additions to the budget segment of the market. They are clearly superior options to Intel’s current 9th Gen line-up at the sub-£150 mark, but the upcoming Comet Lake-S CPUs will likely bring an interesting fight to the table. AMD’s own Zen+ Ryzen 5 1600 AF also remains a particularly tough competitor, but I would personally be happy to pay the extra £15-20 for the Ryzen 3 3300X’s improved gaming performance and newer Zen 2 architecture.

The Ryzen 3 3100 will sell for £94.99 MSRP. The Ryzen 3 3300X is £114.99 MSRP. Availability will be during May on e-tailers such as Overclockers UK.

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Pros:

  • Good gaming performance, especially from the 3300X.
  • Strong compute performance compared to 9th Gen Intel competitors.
  • Decent out of the box frequencies for the market segment.
  • Solid overclocking headroom and very few cooling concerns.
  • Bundled Wraith Stealth cooler does well on the 3100.
  • Excellent capabilities from the AM4 platform – PCIe Gen 4, high-speed DDR4 support, affordable motherboards.
  • Strong and clear upgrade paths thanks to the AM4 platform.

Cons:

  • Ryzen 5 1600 AF is a tough option to compete against at £100 (if you can find availability).
  • Ryzen 3 3100 sees a gaming performance drop-off due to its CCX topology.
  • Wraith Stealth cooler not great for the highly clocked 3300X.

KitGuru says: AMD’s Ryzen 3 3100 and 3300X bring strong performance Zen 2 quad-cores to the sub-£120 market segment. Gaming frame rates are strong, especially on the 3300X, and compute performance punches well above the levels set by Intel competitors.

AMD Ryzen 3 3100:

Rating: 8.

AMD Ryzen 3 3300X:

Rating: 8.5.

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