Benchmarks show the overclockable $49 AMD Athlon 3000G is a good Pentium contender
The Athlon 3000G is a dual-core processor with hyperthreading (2C/4T) running at 3.5 GHz. It fits socket AM4 and sips power with a TDP of 35 watts, making it appealing for low-powered uses, such as an office PC, HTPC, or NAS (no ECC RAM support). There is an integrated Vega 3 GPU, enough for a little light gaming at 720p and handling general computing duties. Unfortunately, this uses the older 14 nm Zen cores, rather than the newer 12 nm Zen+.
Initial benchmarking by TechPowerUp and TechSpot place the stock Athlon 3000G ahead of the previous budget king — the Athlon 200GE — but behind Intel’s budget Pentium G5400 and G5600 desktop CPUs. It is worth noting that the Athlon 3000G and Pentium G5400 do occasionally switch places depending on what aspects each respective benchmark is testing.
Once overclocked to 4.0 GHz, the performance becomes much more comparable to the Pentium G5400 and G5600. The 3000G is slightly ahead in some areas of encoding (h.265), rendering (Cinebench), and iGPU gaming. Meanwhile, the Pentiums maintain a fairly significant lead in areas such as compression, database manipulation, and dGPU gaming — at 1.5 to 2 times the price.
If your budget doesn’t stretch to any of the mid-range CPUs available for sale today and you want to buy new hardware, then the $49 AMD Athlon 3000G appears to be a good option with overclocking allowing it to perform beyond its price point.