AMD Ryzen on 12nm Might Launch Early 2018



/ 12 months ago

Last week, AMD revealed their new process node plans. Instead of going to 14nm+, the Sunnyvale based firm will go for 12nm instead. This marks a trend away from the time where AMD was noticeably behind Intel in terms of process node advancement. So far, the earlier announcement did not reveal any firm launch dates from 12nm. According to a new report, AMD will be pushing 12nm come February 2018.

The report suggests that AMD will move to 12nm with their Ryzen refresh processors. There will be the 2000 series Ryzen 7, Ryzen 5 and Ryzen 3. There are still conflicting reports as to when Zen 2 arrive. This means we cannot be sure if the new processors in early 2018 will be Zen or Zen 2. However, pain old Zen makes more sense given the process node change. AMD will start off with Ryzen 7 in February, Ryzen 5 and Ryzen 3 in March and everything else in May and April.

AMD Shooting for 30% Desktop Marketshare

Due to the success of Ryzen and its various iterations, AMD expects 30% of desktop market share by the start of 2H 2018. This is a good start for AMD which has been languishing in Intel’s shadow for too long. With this timeframe, Intel only has Coffee Lake to answer, which should arrive shortly. At the same time, Intel’s budget offerings which make up most of the volume, don’t arrive till early 2018. This gives Sunnyvale a breather so they can counter with Ryzen on 12nm.

Beyond the processors, the report suggests new 400 series chipset options, including the X470 and B450. With DDR5 and PCIe 4.0 still a bit away, I suspect the new chipsets will simply be a feature bump with more integration added in. Given past history, they should be compatible with current AM4 processors. It will be interesting to see if 12nm will deliver any noticeable performance changes but we’ll have to wait to find out.

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