Question Deciding between budget AM4 CPUs.


Nov 27, 2015
Hey everyone.
I am building a PC for my brother who is going off to college, he will have a laptop for classes and such but I want him to have a desktop if need be. I am using a large amount of old parts from my past, however for the main stuff I want to get new Mobo and CPU (maybe ebay the RAM). I plan on having just about everything set up for him already since he isn't very technical on the hardware side.

I figure he would use Microsoft Office programs, medium/heavy browser use, as well as some light-medium gaming (Overwatch, PUBG, Minecraft).
It was easy to decide to choose AM4, however I am torn between two CPU's.

Ryzen 5 1600
Ryzen 3 2200G

I know the 5 1600 has some better stats, but the 2200G is newer and cheaper. However, if I choose to OC the 2200G, I won't be there to help if something goes wrong. The case has decent enough ventilation.
Is the $30 more for the 1600, as well as no worries of overclocking worth it? Or is it worth $30 without even OC?

Here's a loose parts list, subject to change.

G.Skill Aegis 1x8GB $35 (maybe find something on ebay?)
Toshiba 1TB (used)
Kingston A400 240GB SSD $26
RX 570 (used)
TC102 case (used) or maybe my old InWin 303, but it might be too flashy or bulky for his taste
EVGA G2 650W Gold (used)
Despite the naming scheme, the 2200G is actually first generation Zen architecture. So while it's technically a "newer" product, it's no faster core-for-core and clock-for-clock than any other first gen Ryzen processors (including the Ryzen 5 1600).

I personally would never give someone else a system that I'd overclocked unless they went through the process with me and I was confident they knew how to bump the core voltage slightly (and safely) or drop the frequency to get stability back if things go downhill in the future. I've just seen too many OCs work great for 6 months and then run into issues.

On the value question, the Ryzen 5 1600 is and always was a fantastic CPU. The price/performance pick of the first gen Ryzen lineup IMHO. The 2200G is a decent entry level option, particularly for those who couldn't afford a graphics card upfront, but if you don't need the graphics, it really is entry level. $30 to go from an entry level quad core to what is still a capable mid range 6 core 12 thread CPU is a no brainer IMHO.