When word started circulating that Intel would be following up Kaby Lake with a round of eighth-generation CPUs built on a 14nm++ process, logic dictated that less-expensive Celeron and Pentium-branded offerings would follow. We've written once, twice, and thrice about those rumored cheaper chips, and now they're here. As rumored, Intel is introducing three new Celeron models and five new Pentium Gold models just in time for the mainstream H370, B360, and H110 chipset releases.
Intel bestows all new Pentium Gold chips with two cores and Hyper-Threading, while Celerons make do with two cores and only two hardware threads. T-model chips are a little slower and cost the same as their suffix-less brethren, but consume less power and need less-robust cooling apparatus. Intel introducted Hyper-Threading to Pentium chips in its seventh-generation Core products, but Turbo Boost is still reserved for Core i5 models and above.
|Model number||Clock speed||Cores/threads||L3 cache||TDP||List price|
|Pentium Gold G5600||3.9 GHz||2/4||4MB||54W||$86|
|Pentium Gold G5500||3.8 GHz||2/4||4MB||54W||$75|
|Pentium Gold G5500T||3.2 GHz||2/4||4MB||35W||$75|
|Pentium Gold G5400||3.7 GHz||2/4||4MB||58W||$64|
|Pentium Gold G5400T||3.1 GHz||2/4||4MB||35W||$64|
|Celeron G4920||3.2 GHz||2/2||2MB||54W||$52|
|Celeron G4900||3.1 GHz||2/2||2MB||54W||$42|
|Celeron G4900T||2.9 GHz||2/2||2MB||35W||$42|
The new models' changes when compared to Kaby Lake Pentiums and Celerons are pretty small, consisting primarily of minor clock speed bumps, compatibility with Intel's newest desktop motherboard chipsets, and rebadged "UHD" IGPs. Prices are exactly the same as the seventh-generation models for chips at the same position in the product stack. The entry-level Pentium Gold G5400 has the same $64 list price as the corresponding Pentium G4560, the new G5500 costs the same $75 as old midrange G4600, and the G5600 has the same $86 price tag that used to come attached to the Pentium Gold G4620.
As for the new Celerons, the processor market around the $50 price point is as unexciting as one would expect. The new chips all hang out within 200 MHz of 3 GHz and have two cores and two threads to work with. The Celeron G4900 and G4900T ring in at $42, and the slightly-faster 4920 enters the fray at $10 more.
These new models all look pretty competent for basic PCs in their respective price brackets considering the generally-good single-threaded performance the chips offer. AMD has a single Zen chip in the bargain-bin space: the Ryzen 3 2200G at $99.99. However, that chip's graphics chops are worlds ahead of Intel's desktop IGPs, so gamers putting off a graphics card purchase until the market calms down could be better-served dropping the additional coin on an AMD rig.