AMD was the second big chipmaker to deliver a CES 2021 press conference, with Team Red announcing new Ryzen 5000 series processors for laptops while teasing new Radeon graphics cards and Big Navi on laptops coming soon. Here’s what you need to know!
First up, the number of new mobile chips that debuted in the 40-minute conference was kind of insane. AMD announced 13 new processors, including 10 models with current-gen Zen 3 designs and three with last-gen Zen 2 chips instead, with the latter mostly at the bottom end of the lineup and costing less. Like last year’s Ryzen 4000 chips, the new processors are split into high performance (‘H’) and ultra-thin-friendly (‘U’) designs, with six or eight cores in the vast majority. If you’re familiar with AMD’s Ryzen 9, Ryzen 7, Ryzen 5 and Ryzen 3 naming scheme on desktop, you’ll be pleased to know that the same options exist here too – and if you’re not au fait, these are roughly analogous to Intel’s Core i9, Core i7, Core i5 and Core i3 processor families that offer enthusiast, high-end, mid-range and entry-level performance, respectively.
Every high performance H-series chip comes with 19 or 20MB of cache, around double that of last year’s Ryzen 4000 equivalents. H-series power targets (TDPs) vary from 35W to 45W, while the U-series parts hit 15W; as you might expect higher wattages provide increased performance but require thicker designs and drain battery life faster. The Zen 3 parts, which includes every H-series processor, should offer up to a 20 per cent improvement to single-threaded performance compared to their last-gen equivalents. Like Ryzen 5000 on desktop, that’s achieved thanks to a move from four-core to eight-core complexes, reducing memory latency and thereby boosting performance. AMD’s desktop Ryzen 5000 chips were the first to truly challenge Intel’s gaming hegemony, so we have high hopes for Ryzen 5000 on mobile too.