AMD previews CPUs for cheap laptops, flagship gaming PCs

What’s up

At Computex 2022, AMD is previewing a new generation of desktop PCs, first aimed at gamers, and a new laptop CPU aimed at laptops that cost $ 399- $ 699.

Why it matters

Cheaper laptops with fewer compromises are always in demand, plus the new PC-CPUs promise more than just the usual performance increase generation over generation, as well as support for some technologies that can improve the speed and flow of gaming.

What’s next

We will hear more about this development in the coming months until the launches closer to October.

During her keynote for Computex 2022, chip giant AMD CEO Lisa Su previewed new products and technologies we can expect to see from the next few months and heading into the rest of 2022. They include the long-teased next-generation Ryzen 7000 series of 5nm desktop CPUs code called “Rafael” – and its associated platform architecture, as well as new Ryzen CPUs (code name “Mendocino”) designed for cheap laptops and Chromebooks costing $ 399- $ 699.

New budget mobile CPUs are not seismic news, but the products they run are the ones people are looking for. In this case, AMD will encounter its low-end Ryzen mobile chips for laptops and Chromebooks, apparently updates to the Ryzen 3 5425U and 5425C (although AMD did not specify, did not specify the name of the lines), most specifically with RDNA 2 integrated graphics and some of the newer power-saving technologies that will allow laptops to reach AMD’s goal of 10 hours of battery life in mixed use. The jump to RDNA 2 alone should give a remarkable boost to these laptops.

Next generation PCs

AMD fell a bit on that upcoming Zen 4 architecture at CES 2022and today offered much more detail – including that it appears to be on schedule for the second half of this year.

Zen 4 is based on double 5nm chiplets featuring space-sharing processor cores with 6nm-supporting chipsets that add an integrated GPU based on the RDNA 2 architecture – recently incorporated into the Ryzen 6000 mobile processors – that can output HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 2. It also captures Intel with support for DDR5 memory, Wi-Fi 6E and up to 24 lanes for storage and graphics of advanced PCIe Gen 5 slots.

The cores have twice as much L2 cache (1MB per core) and an extended instruction set to enable more AI acceleration. AMD claims that all this results in more than a 15% increase in single core performance and now allows a maximum boost frequency of more than 5GHz. Although it has narrowed the gap significantly, AMD still tends to lag behind Intel for single-core speeds, which applications tend to use for intensive processing for short series.

No PCIe 5 NVMe SSDs are shipped yet, but AMD says at least Crucial should have one ready when the new motherboards launch this fall.

When we talk about motherboards, the Ryzen 7000 uses a new socket, AM5, which has a larger number of pins than AM4, as well as built-in support for a processor power consumption of 170 watts (AM4 is 142 watts). One drawback of the new architecture: it does not support DDR5, only DDR4. Since DDR5 is still more expensive than DDR4, it means you can not configure cheaply and wait until prices drop to upgrade.

AMD

The motherboard chipsets will come in three versions, just as they do today: an X670 Extreme for control freak overclockers, with PCIe 5 throughout; X670 with based overclocking, at least one PCIe 5 m.2 NVMe slot and optional PCIe 5 for the graphics card; and a mainstream B650, which only has PCIe 5 for m.2 SSD. Motherboards for the first wave of systems will come from the usual suspects, ASRock, Asus, BioStar, Gigabyte and MSI.

Faster storage

The company also announced a new addition to its “smart” gaming portable repertoire, SmartAccess Storage, which includes support for Windows 11 DirectStorage the technology used by Xbox Series X and S – to speed up the loading of games and game resources from an SSD by performing texture decompression on the graphics chip and giving the GPU direct access to the system memory (SmartAccess Memory) so that it can take a faster route to the graphics memory instead of the usual long way around via CPU.

It joins SmartShift Max, which can shuffle power as needed between CPU and GPU in supported games to maximize speed where you need it most, and SmartAccess Graphics, which intelligently switches the screen connection between integrated and discrete graphics processors (a convenient change that uses less power than the typical hybrid graphics design), as well as SmartShift Eco, which can automatically switch between the two GPUs when it detects that you have disconnected the power adapter.

All of these go into a laptop that AMD dubs AMD Advantage, which, like Intel’s Evo brand, means that it uses the latest AMD chips and technologies. This summer, Corsair will launch a new AMD Advantage laptop, which AMD claims is the first optimized for streaming, Corsair Voyager. “Optimized” means that it includes streaming technology from Elgato (owned by Corsair) with software and 10 dedicated keyboard keys to emulate a Stream Deck and an FHD webcam plus software based on Elgato Facecam. You will be able to purchase customized versions of Voyager through Origin PC (also owned by Corsair).