Today AMD launched its new Ryzen 7000 series processors along with its 5nm Zen 4 architecture and had some interesting insights into its next-gen series slated for release about a month from now.
AMD Ryzen 7000 Series Launch
First off, the new AMD Ryzen 7000 series incorporates the new Zen 4 cores on a 5nm process. It also largely catches up to Intel’s Alder Lake in adopting PCIe Gen5 and DDR5, but it will exceed Alder Lake in other areas.
With Zen 4, AMD says it should get a 13% IPC uplift. Coupled with up to 5.7GHz single-thread speeds, it says it can get up to 29% more single-thread performance.
The AMD Ryzen 9 7950X has 16 cores, that 5.7GHz boost clock, plenty of cache, and a 170W TDP. Even with 5nm, TDPs will go up in this generation.
AMD says its new AMD Ryzen 9 7950X is faster than the Ryzen 9 5950X especially in content creator workloads. It is mostly focused on rendering apps not applications like Premiere Pro and others. Typically AMD Zen architectures do very well on rendering apps. As a funny aside when we did our ASRock Rack 3U8G-C612 8-Way GPU Server Review with 8x AMD FirePro W9100’s, AMD’s FAE told us that Blender was not a commonly used application that had little to no commercial appeal so AMD is not supporting it. Seven years later, AMD is using it along with three other rendering applications to show its next-generation performance.
AMD also says it is faster than the current, soon to be previous, generation Alder Lake chips.
AMD’s next-gen chip is also expected to be more power efficient and faster than Intel’s current generation chip (but Intel will be launching soon enough before 2023’s Meteor Lake.
Here is the SKU stack. While AMD is getting a lot more performance, even the AMD Ryzen 5 7600X is now a 105W TDP part.
AMD says that the Ryzen 5 7600X should be about equal to the Intel Core i9-12900K on some workloads, but these are different than the workloads it showed in the above comparisons, so we assume these are hand-picked.
Next, AMD went into its Zen 4 architecture.
AMD Zen 4 Architecture Update
AMD says its 2022-2023 era Zen 4 architecture will offer 13% IPC with a new front end design and AVX-512 on 5nm.
Here is how AMD came up with 13% IPC gains with a geomean at 4.0GHz and 8C 16T.
AMD says the big IPC contributor is the new front end, but then there are other parts that make up the 13% overall increase.
Perhaps the big one is AVX-512 support. What was a bit strange here is that AMD was touting “AI + HPC” on its desktop CPUs. It was also using AI inference using FP32 and Int8. Perhaps the exciting thing on the server side is that AVX-512 and VNNI will bring AMD’s architectures closer to the Ice Lake generation of Xeons in these areas. This is AMD’s strategy, let Intel pioneer new instructions, then follow up with AMD support later. We covered this in More Cores More Better AMD Arm and Intel Server CPUs in 2022-2023.
Die area for the core was reduced by 18% even with adding the new transistors for things like AVX-512. This is in no small part due to the transition to TSMC 5nm.
AMD says Zen 4 should offer lower power at the same performance or more performance at the same power.
It seems the biggest power improvements are at lower TDPs. So for the 65W Project TinyMiniMicro nodes, this should be a big benefit to performance.
AMD says it does not need efficient cores because its cores will be smaller than Intel’s current P-cores as it transitions to 5nm. On many consumer CPUs, like the Apple M2 and more, the die area of the CPU cores is actually relatively small compared to the other parts of the SoC.
AMD says it has a roadmap to Zen 5 on 4nm and 3nm.
Next, the company discussed the new AM5 platform.
AMD AM5 Platform
The AMD AM5 platform talk discussed how AMD kept AM4 for a long time.
The new AMD AM5 platform uses a LGA1718 socket and can push up to 230W. It also supports DDR5 and PCIe Gen5 with some important caveats.
The X670 Extreme will have PCIe Gen5 to graphics and storage. The X670 has PCIe Gen5 just to storage. The B650 Extreme has similar capabilities with PCIe Gen5 graphics and storage and the non-extreme just to storage.
At FMS 2022 a few weeks ago, the floor was littered with Intel Alder Lake platforms running PCIe Gen5 devices. There were even Sapphire Rapids systems on the show floor. We asked why there were no pre-production AMD systems, and we were told that the Intel PCIe Gen5 platforms were further along. Also, with the X670/B650 only supporting PCIe Gen5 graphics on the Extreme edition, one has to wonder why AMD could not deliver a fully PCIe Gen5 platform across the board. It costs more to handle PCIe Gen5 signaling, so that may be a reason, but whereas AMD has typically led, this feels like a letdown. At the same time, the SSD vendors all told us they were validating controllers, and designs on Alder Lake so they were comfortable with consumer and data center SSDs on Intel PCIe Gen5 controllers, but they were more skeptical about AMD PCIe Gen5 controllers. That may be a situation that resolves itself with the AM5 launch and is just a byproduct of Alder Lake being in the market so much earlier with PCIe Gen5.
DDR5 support is in this generation as AMD adds support for the newer generation memory standard.
AMD will have EXPO Technology to help overclock memory.
Still, we should see a very broad spectrum of motherboards. We see the $125 starting price here, but as we see with platforms like the ASUS STRIX Z690-E Gaming and Gigabyte X570 I AORUS PRO prices on boards can go up a lot from there.
On the pricing side, the new X-series CPUs will range from $299 to $699 USD.
AMD says these will be available on September 27, 2022.
The AMD Ryzen 7000 series is interesting indeed. We will have our coverage of the new series as we wrap up the current generation of small PCs based on the current-generation parts. Usually, it takes AMD some time to move lines to other markets like corporate desktop PCs and lower-power PCs. Still, the competition between Intel and AMD is heating up.