Intel Celeron G3930 On Linux: A Dual-Core Kabylake CPU For $40

Written by Michael Larabel in Processors on 2 February 2017 at 01:00 PM EST. Page 1 of 5. 27 Comments.

Earlier this week we posted Linux benchmarks of the Intel Pentium G4600 as a 3.6GHz processor for around $90 USD. It was an interesting processor for the value, but if your wallet is tighter, the Celeron G3930 is selling for about $40 as a dual-core sub-3GHz Kabylake processor. Here are those test results.

It's been quite a number of years since last testing an Intel Celeron processor, but I decided to pick up this cheapest Kabylake processor anyways for some interesting tests... Aside from seeing how the performance compares to more powerful and expensive processors, I'm going to be working on some OpenGL vs. Vulkan Linux gaming performance comparisons on both low and high-end CPUs, among other possible interesting tests with now having a cheap Celeron CPU. In this article are just the preliminary figures for how this $40 CPU compares to an assortment of other hardware.

The Intel Celeron G3930 is a dual-core processor without Hyper Threading, offers a 2MB cache, and clocks up to 2.90GHz without any turbo boost frequency. Similar to the lower-end Pentium CPUs, the G3930 also goes without any AVX/AVX2 support but still supports other modern instruction set extensions like AES-NI, SGX, MPX, etc. This CPU has a 51 Watt TDP and it makes use of HD Graphics 610 (GT1; rather than HD Graphics 630 with the higher-end Kabylake CPUs) and clocks up to a frequency of 1.05GHz.

The Celeron G3930 should play well on Linux assuming you are using a newer Linux distribution with ideally a recent version of the Linux kernel and Mesa, particularly if you care about HD Graphics support. I tested this processor with Clear Linux, Ubuntu 16.10, and Fedora 25 without any issues to speak of.

As this is my first Celeron purchase in quite a number of years, I unfortunately don't have any other Celeron comparison points for this article, but on the Pentium side is the G3258, G4400, and G4600. The Core CPUs for comparison were the Core i3 7100, Core i5 6500, Core i5 6600K, Core i7 4770K, and Core i7 7700K. The Celeron G3930 system was using an MSI Z270-A PRO motherboard, 2 x 8GB DDR4-2400 memory, and Samsung 950 PRO 256GB NVMe SSD, similar to our other recent Kabylake Linux benchmarks.

All of these Linux benchmarks were done in a fully-automated manner using the open-source Phoronix Test Suite benchmarking software. If you wish to compare your own system's Linux performance to the data in this article, simply install the Phoronix Test Suite and run phoronix-test-suite benchmark 1701310-RI-INTELKABY71.

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