At Computex AMD finally confirmed more than the 40% IPC improvement for their upcoming Zen Processors. These first ones are Summit Ridge. Though in typical AMD fashion the release date is still fuzzy, sampling to high-tier customers will start in a few weeks with an expected release to OEM around Q3.
So what do we now know about Zen? It’s “on target” and “meeting expectations”. We can expect 8 core/16 thread chips. These are based on a ground up redesign, abandoning the chip architecture of Bulldozer/kaveri to follow an intel hyperthreading equivalent. If the 40% IPC are close to the real world performance then this switch to hyperthreading could make significant inroads into higher end desktops.
Zen will use the AM4 socket currently being used for Bristol Ridge, as well as bringing in official DDR4 support. Like the bulldozer launch years ago, AMD expect Zen to power all of their CPU ambitions for the coming years, embedded, laptop, desktop and server. For AMDs sake, this time they need it to pay off.
Oh, did I mention it’s all on their new FinFET process with 14nm, the same node size as the newly announced GPU range. Which should reduce both heat output and power consumption too.