AMD Promises Major Productivity Gains For Enterprises
If 2019 was about AMD launching groundbreaking processors for desktop PCs and servers, this year is all about delivering what CEO Lisa Su is calling the best processors for laptops in the world.
But it’s not just about consumer and gaming laptops, as the Santa Clara, Calif.-based company revealed at CES 2020 last week. The chipmaker is also planning to extend its 7-nanometer Ryzen 4000 mobile processors to business laptops with its Pro series lineup later this year.
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AMD is set to make its biggest mark in the laptop space yet with the Ryzen 4000 series, with more than 100 notebook designs confirmed with OEMs, including Dell and Lenovo, this year. That is a marked improvement over the Ryzen 3000 mobile series, which made it into just under 70 systems last year.
In an interview with CRN, Jason Banta, AMD’s senior director of OEM client computing, said the Ryzen Pro 4000 series processors will be a big deal for enterprises because of their combined performance and power efficiency gains made possible by AMD’s 7nm Zen 2 architecture as well as the company’s Ryzen Pro manageability and security features that compete with Intel’s vPro platform.
“Enterprises should be really excited because the performance that this product is bringing is going to allow their workforce to be that much more productive in their enterprise,” he said.
By using the company’s 7nm Zen 2 architecture that serves as the basis for AMD’s third-generation Ryzen desktop processors and second-generation EPYC Rome server processors, Banta said the company is able to provide processors that balance great CPU and graphics performance.
That differs from Intel’s most recent laptop processors, according to Banta, which are split between Ice Lake for better graphics and Comet Lake for higher core count.
“By going to something like 7nm, we’re able to put great graphics and eight cores, 16 threads on the same product, so it takes away that need to make a choice,” he said.
While the company hasn’t shared the speeds and feeds of its Ryzen Pro 4000 series, the processors will likely share some top characteristics with AMD’s Ryzen 4000 U-series processors for ultrathin consumer laptops since the new Pro series is being made for ultrathin laptops on the commercial side.
At the top of the stack for the U-series is the AMD Ryzen 7 4800U, which comes with eight cores, 16 threads, up to 4.2 GHz in boost frequency, a 1.7 GHz base frequency and eight Radeon GPU cores, all within a 15-watt thermal envelope that is needed for ultrathin laptops.
Compared to Intel’s 10th-generation Core i7-1065G Ice Lake processors, AMD said benchmark data shows that the Ryzen 7 4800U provides 4 percent single-threaded performance, 90 percent better multi-threaded performance and 27 percent better graphics performance.
Banta said while AMD isn’t ready to share more details about the Ryzen Pro 4000 series, the company wanted to signal to the enterprise market and its channel partners that the CPUs are coming.
“You’re going to see a very, very strong presence of 4000 series Ryzen Pro mobile designs when that rolls out later this year,” he said.
What follows is a lightly edited transcript of CRN’s interview with Banta, who talked about the benefits AMD’s 7nm Zen 2 architecture will bring to the enterprise, the trajectory of Ryzen mobile in the laptop space and how AMD is preparing channel partners for the Ryzen Pro 4000 launch.