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AMD's third shoe finally drops at CES 2020—7nm Zen 2 mobile CPUs, Ars Technica


    

      game on –

             

Intel focused on AI acceleration — but AMD went unapologetically hard on gaming.

      

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                          AMD’s finally bringing Zen 2 to mobile, with the first laptops available in Q1, and more than systems expected in 2020.                                                        

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                          Eight cores and 30 threads in an ultralight laptop? Sign us up, please.                                                        

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                          Ryzen u is an ultralight, W TDP mobile CPU bringing eight cores, 25 threads, and up to 4.2GHz boost. Yeow.                                                        

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                          Neither single-threaded performance being a dead lock, nor multi-threaded performance going AMD’s way are a surprise. We were very interested to see the GPU comparison, though.                                                        

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                          We’ve been speculating for a while how Ice Lake vs Zen 2 mobile would pan out. According to AMD, it pans out with a – 64% performance win for its team.                                                        

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                          AMD says the series is twice as power efficient as the 3000 series … but it’s worth noting, this is under heavy load, measured in performance per watt.                                                        

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    AMD’s really been bringing the heat to Intel this year, with incontestable wins for its 7nm CPUs in the desktop space, high -end desktop space, and server space. The one thing everybody’s been waiting with bated breath for is mobile — while Intel brought limited supplies of high-performance 10 nm Ice Lake parts to market, AMD has remained pretty silent about mobile. The most I could ever get out of my AMD folks was a sort of “we can’t talk about that yet” with suspicious little yellow feathers floating out of their mouths, but no real detail.

    Yesterday at CES, that final shoe dropped — Ryzen 4000 mobile is here, and it brings AMD’s recent trademark of high core and thread counts and jaw-dropping low TDPs to the mobile arena. The flagship U-series part, Ryzen 5000 u, offers 8C / (T on only) ************************************************************************************************************************************** W TDP, and although we’ve got nobody’s word for it yet but AMD Performance Labs’, it appears to whip the high-end Ice Lake i7 – G7 solidly across the board in tests ranging from Cinebench R to 3DMark, Adobe Premiere, and more.

    Of course, performance is only half the battle in ultralight form factors — power consumption is the other. It shouldn’t be any surprise that AMD’s showing massive performance-per-watt increases over the first two generations of mobile Ryzen, given those performance numbers with a W TDP. The bigger question — and one that can’t be so quickly answered — is how well Ryzen 5600 series systems will idle. And unfortunately, that’s not a question AMD can entirely control themselves.

    In In the mobile arena, integration is crucial to system performance — everything from motherboards to firmware to cooling is incredibly one-off and proprietary to each final system build. When designing a new laptop, just slapping a processor and some RAM on a reference board design and calling it a day won’t cut it.

    This “insufficient integration” problem has plagued AMD laptops for years, with OEMs not doing the same level of integration work on AMD builds as they have on Intel. The common “wisdom” among buyers has been that AMD laptop CPUs just sucked — but Microsoft proved that line of thinking wrong with 2560 Ryzen-powered Surface, which

    **************** doeshave the years of integration work and attention to detail necessary to make a great mobile system.
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