This year has seen AMD update its entire CPU product stack with launch after launch, targeting everyone from entry-level users with the Ryzen 3 series to hard-core enthusiasts with Ryzen Threadripper, and data centre customers with Epyc. Now, the company is fulfilling its promise to launch laptop APUs, or Accelerated Processing Units with integrated graphics. AMD is calling its latest launch the “world’s fastest processor for ultrathin notebooks”, which is a tall claim, as these processors will have to go up against Intel’s brand new 8th Generation Core lineup.
Previously codenamed ‘Raven Ridge’, Ryzen Mobile APUs combine the highly praised Zen CPU architecture with the recently launched Vega GPU architecture. There are only two models, the Ryzen 7 2700U and the Ryzen 5 2500U. AMD claims an astonishing 161 percent graphics performance lead over its competition and 44 percent more CPU performance in multi-threaded tasks. Compared to AMD’s previous “Bristol Ridge” mobile APU offerings, the company is claiming up to 3X CPU performance, 2.3X graphics performance, and 58 percent less power consumption. AMD also says that apps launch up to 41 percent faster.
While Intel’s 8th Gen Core i7-8550U might have a slight edge over the Ryzen 7 2700U in Cinebench R15’s single-threaded test with scores of 159 and 144 respectively, the multi-threaded test gives AMD a significant advantage, with a huge lead of 719 points compared to 498. AMD also shows performance leads over Intel in POVRay, PCMark 10 and TrueCrypt, but not in PassMark. When it comes to graphics performance, AMD claims that its Ryzen 7 2700U APU alone outperforms an Intel Core i7-7500U with an Nvidia GeForce 950M GPU by 915 points to 900 in 3DMark Time Spy.
AMD also claims playable frame rates in an ultrathin notebook form factor. Users can expect to run League of Legends, DOTA 2 and CS:GO at 1920×1080, and Overwatch and Quake Champions at 1280×720, and still get between 43fps and 66fps depending on the quality settings used. Moreover, 4K streaming is supported by Amazon, Vudu and Netflix. HDR and Freesync 2 are supported on both internal and external displays.
The Ryzen 7 2700U and Ryzen 5 2500U are both quad-core processors featuring simultaneous multi-threading, allowing each core to run two threads at the same time. The Ryzen 7 model has a maximum clock speed of 3.8GHz, and 10 GPU compute units running at 1300MHz. The Ryzen 5 model has a maximum clock speed of 3.6GHz and 8 GPU compute units running at 1100MHz. Notably, AMD is not publicising base clock speeds, which are 2.2GHz and 2.0GHz respectively. Mobile Ryzen processors will feature a single Core Complex of four cores, rather than the two used on all desktop parts.
Both processors have 6MB last-level caches and are configured to run within a 15W TDP envelope, though notebook manufacturers can reconfigure this down to 12W or up to 25W to suit their designs. Dual-channel DDR4-2400 RAM is supported. AMD has worked on optimising power delivery to the CPU and GPU logic on the chip, and can trade off power between CPU cores as well as GPU compute units opportunistically, depending on load and operating conditions.