With the huge success of the Ryzen 3000 CPUs and the Navi 10 graphics cards, AMD is at the top of their game this year; and they’re looking to continue their successful run. Slides from the AMD Roadmap for 2019-22 mention RDNA2, the upcoming AMD Ryzen 4000 CPUs(based on the Zen3 microarchitecture) and Zen4-based CPUs.
The Roadmap confirms that the design phase of Zen3 is complete and will be based on the 7nm+ process. The Zen3 based Ryzen 4000 CPUs codenamed “Vermeer” will be a major upgrade over the Ryzen 3000 line-up. With further refinements in the 7nm design, the next Gen Ryzen CPUs will offer much better thermal performance. Moreover, they’ll also have a lower TDP and can be expected to have more cores than the Zen2 CPUs. The slides also mention that the Zen4 CPUs are in the design phase.
AMD Ryzen 4000 Speculations:
- DDR5 Support: The first DDR5 RAM Modules are expected to launch by the end of this year. While mobile and server markets should be quick to switch to the new specification, there’s still no fixed date for the arrival of DDR5 on desktop PCs. Both AMD and Intel have been quiet on the matter. AMD may support DDR5 memory on the Ryzen 4000 CPUs which are expected to launch in 2020. However, the Zen3 CPUs are listed as being AM4 socket and DDR5 support requires AM5. Either way, we can expect full DDR5 support for PCs by 2021 and the Zen4 CPUs to launch with it
- PCIe 5.0 Support: The PCIe 5.0 Specification is already available and it won’t be much of a stretch to expect the next-gen Ryzen CPUs to support it. While we probably won’t se mainstream adoption till 2020, one can easily expect more options when AMD and Intel start supporting it.
- Improved SMT Support: AMD’s alternative to Intel’s Hyper-Threading, SMT (Simultaneous Multi-Threading) is expected to get better with an increase of up to 4 simultaneous threads per core in the Zen3-based chips.
The Roadmap for the Radeon GPUs also mentions a new RDNA2 design based on the new 7nm+ process. This is in line with the XBOX Scarlett that will use the new architecture and launch in 2020. The upcoming Navi 20 GPUs will use the RDNA 2 architecture and support hardware-level ray-tracing. The Navi 20 line-up will be AMD’s equivalent to NVIDIA’s RTX line-up with full DXR (DirectX Raytracing) and Vulkan-RT support.
It will be interesting to see how the Navi 20 line-up will stack up to NVIDIA’s offerings. While the consumer-grade Navi 12 is expected to compete directly with the RTX 2080 and the Navi 14 the workstation market, the RDNA2-based GPUs pose quite a threat to NVIDIA’s future offerings. Moreover, with the next generation of consoles using GPUs based on the RDNA2 architecture, we are looking at a significant boost in graphics performance over the next year. Maybe, one can finally expect to run a demanding game at 4K with ray-tracing without watching a slideshow.
There was, however, no mention of the Zen2-based “Renoir” APUs or the 4th Gen EPYC Milan Server Processors. The Ryzen 4000 CPUs based on the Zen3 microarchitecture will launch in 2020 and the RDNA2-based Navi 20 GPUs in Q3 2020.