Richland APU to get 28nm graphics upgrade

/ 4 years ago

The current range of Llano and Trinity desktop APUs utilise the 32nm CPU process based on Bulldozer and Piledriver respectively. Whilst the Llano and Trinity GPUs are both from the 40nm process, with Llano being Evergreen powered (HD 5000) and Trinity Northern Islands powered (HD 6000). Although with some shifting of naming patterns and rebranding AMD claim HD 6000 series for Llano and HD 7000 series for Trinity.

That said AMD is now making the shift to 28nm for the Richland APUs, these are the post Trinity APUs. This will be the first introduction of 28nm Radeon cores to an AMD APU. Sources are stating the introduction of HD 8000 series graphics to the Richland APUs and if past trends remain consistent we should expect to see rebranded mid-range HD 7000 GPUs attached to the Richland APUs as HD 8000 graphics parts. Yet the core architecutre will be the first generation of 28nm graphics, so Southern Islands based, not the 2nd revision of 28nm graphics, i.e. the soon to be released Sea Islands GPUs.

All that said, it is still possible AMD might opt for a new 28nm Sea Islands based GPU for the Richland APUs but it seems unlikely that AMD would just skip a generation. Some speculation had been stating that the highest end Richland APU part will feature an integrated HD 7750 graphics part which seems like a realistic target although new information reveals the dual core Richland APUs will feature 128 Radeon cores on the dual core APUs and 384 Radeon cores on the fastest unlocked quad core APUs.

Graphics aside, the Richland APUs will keep the 1866MHz mem0ry support that Trinity uses. The CPU component could possibly be either Piledriver or Steamroller cores but nothing more is known about that yet. The socket will remain as FM2, meaning current FM2 boards should be of use to Richland APUs – retaining that trademark AMD backwards compatibility.

However, putting all this into context AMD will be battling Intel’s latest 22nm Haswell based LGA 1150 processors equipped with DDR4 and improved integrated graphics. Its yet to be seen whether AMDs Richland APU will remain competitive.