AMD won big on all fronts in 2019. They challenged the current CPU manufacturing champions Intel in both the mainstream desktop CPU sector and the HEDT CPU sector. AMD has now effectively established its CPUs as the better alternative of the two. Furthermore, both Microsoft and Sony have announced their respective next gen consoles (the Xbox Series X and the PlayStation 5) will be Ryzen-based. Also, AMD has announced a new GPU architecture that can effectively compete with that of their GPU rivals, Nvidia. And as we enter into a brand new year, AMD is all set to take over the mobility CPU sector as well with the introduction of the 4th Gen Ryzen APUs.
AMD is planning to release three versions of the Ryzen 4000 Mobile APU family. These include the 15 Watt U series, 35 / 45 Watt H series and the 65 Watt D series. The first chips are expected to launch during the first quarter of 2020.
In this article we will share all that we know about AMD’s upcoming 4th gen Ryzen APUs belonging to the Renoir APU family.
So without further ado, let’s get started!
The Three Versions
AMD plans on releasing three different versions of the Ryzen 4000 APUs:
The 15 Watt U series: These are the first of the three versions. They have been designed for light laptops and will most likely feature a rather low base clock speed.
The 35 HS / 45 Watt H series: These have been designed for creator/gaming laptops and. Two versions have been spotted the 35 Watt HS series and the 45 Watt H series. The Ryzen 7 4800H is expected to not include all GPU cores, and a greater emphasis will be placed on the CPU cores. But this most likely won’t pose an issue as gaming/creator laptops usually have dedicated GPUs included in them.
The 65 Watt D series: These have been designed for desktop PCs. These will have the highest TDP and the clock speed among the three versions.
4th Gen Ryzen APUs: Specs
Specs wise, both the 15 Watt and the 45 Watt versions of the new Ryzen APUs will feature a two folds increase in the number of cores and threads. The third-gen Ryzen APUs, such as the Ryzen 7 3750H for instance, featured 4 cores and 8 threads. The number of cores and threads have been bumped to 8 and 16 respectively in the 4th Gen APUs.
And thanks to AMD’s incredibly successful Zen 2 architecture, the 4th Gen Ryzen APUs will reportedly perform as well as Intel’s mainstream CPU lineup, like the Core i9-9880H or even the Core i9-9980HK. The Core i9-9880H has a clock speed advantage over AMD’s Ryzen APUs (with a base speed of 2.30 GHz that can be overclocked to 4.80 GHz). But the Ryzen APUs will make up for that via their IPC (Instructions per cycle) advantage.
With regards to power consumption, the 4th Gen Ryzen APUs will reportedly be much more economical compared to their respective competition by Intel. But AMDs upcoming APUs will also reportedly experience an increase in the core temperature. This is due to the density of the 7nm chips.
How would an Octa-core APU change the market?
The prospect of AMD’s upcoming 8-core/16-thread APUs definitely seems interesting. But how exactly would they affect the market?
AMD did incredibly well in 2019 in their two primary market sectors: The HEDT CPU market and the mainstream CPU market. And as head into a brand new year and decade, an octa-core APU could be just the thing for them to make an impact in the mobile computing market as well.
The 8-cores definitely make for a huge incentive. But besides that, the onboard GPU in AMD’s APUs already performs vastly better than Intel’s onboard graphics, the Intel UHD Graphics. But the better performing onboard GPU could not make that big an impact as most laptops with a processor this good, are usually accompanied by a dedicated GPU.
4th Gen Ryzen APUs: Release & Competition With Intel
The 4th gen Ryzen APU chips are expected to start shipping in the first quarter of 2020. And this could once again help AMD beat Intel in another front.
Currently, in the mobile platform, Intel uses 10nm chips whereas AMD opted to stick with the 12nm chips. But after having introduced the 7nm architecture in 2019 with the Ryzen 9 CPUs and the third gen Threadrippers, AMD is finally bringing 7nm to the mobile market.
To get a better understanding of what’s to come, consider Microsoft’s Surface laptop. The Surface brand has two varieties of laptop, one with Intel’s mobile chip and one with AMD’s mobile chip. And currently the Surface with Intel’s 10nm mobile chip outperforms the one with AMD’s 12nm chip.
With the introduction of the 7nm based Ryzen 4000 series of APUs, AMD is all set to have the clear winner.
2019: The Year of AMD
2019 was truly the year of AMD. The company had been putting a fight against Intel with their previous two generations of Ryzen CPUs. But in 2019, with the launch of the Zen 2 based third gen Ryzen CPUs and Ryzen Threadrippers, the company defined itself as the undisputed champion of the CPU world. Intel has to curb the prices of its CPUs as it was struggling to keep up with the vastly superior Ryzen alternatives. Historically, AMD CPUs had always been viewed as the less powerful and cheaper alternative to Intel CPUs. AMD changed this in 2019. Intel struggled to keep up with the AMD’s 7nm based Zen 2 CPUs and for the first time ever AMD sales overtook Intel sales in several markets around the world.
And as we enter 2020, AMD has much bigger plans on hold. After the APUs, the company plans on releasing their most powerful threadripper ever, the 64-Core/128-Thread monster, 3990X. And later in the year, the arrival of the fourth gen Ryzen CPUs will definitely be entertaining.
This concludes the main portion of our article on AMD’s upcoming Zen 2 based fourth gen APUs. We will keep you updated if we hear more on this. Feel free to drop a comment below.
Now we will talk a bit about APUs and how they differ from their cousins, CPUs and GPUs.
What is an APU? How Does It Differ From A CPU Or A GPU?
This section is for our less tech-savvy readers. You might have heard of CPUs and GPUs before. But some of you might not know what exactly an APU is.
To be more clear on this, we will elaborate on each of these three pieces of hardware and then differentiate them.
CPU (Central Processing Unit)
Most of you have heard of a CPU (Central Processing Unit). It is widely regarded as the brain of the computer and rightfully so. The CPU is responsible for operating your computer’s OS, doing all sorts of calculations and executing the commands you give to your computer. Modern CPUs come in a single microprocessor chip and usually have multiple cores. This allows them to perform multiple tasks simultaneously. Furthermore, Hyperthreading technology allows the CPU to perform as though it had twice as many cores as it actually does.
GPU (Graphics Processing Unit)
GPUs have become much more ubiquitous than they used to be. As the name suggests, they are created for generating the images and graphics on your screen. While this task can and used to be done by a CPU, a GPU is much better at it. Modern GPUs are capable of performing billions of tasks per second and have hundreds or even thousands of cores. It is because of this that GPUs are widely popular for a different reason as well. Computer and Data Scientists use GPUs to perform their non-graphics related tasks and GPUs can perform those tasks much faster than a CPU.
Most GPUs come in a discrete graphics card, but some are integrated into the motherboard or even the CPU.
APU (Accelerated Processing Unit)
And finally, we come to the APU. APUs are units that combine CPUs and GPUs onto a single chip. You may think that Intel CPUs that combine a Processor and an integrated HD graphics unit onto a single die qualify as APUs. But technically they do not due to missing HAS (Heterogeneous System Architecture) features. And Intel avoids referring to its graphics integrated CPUs as APUs since APUs were first developed (and the term was coined) by their rivals, AMD.
Today most APUs can be found in laptops, other mobile devices and gaming consoles rather than as standalone units. (Both the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 feature semi-custom APUs.) But standalone units that you would install into a desktop computer (like the D series discussed earlier) also make up a portion of the market. But rather than replacements for a standalone graphics card, APUs are usually seen as replacements for GPUs that are embedded on the motherboard.