AMD's new Ryzen notebook chips pack Radeon Vega graphics


Where the new Ryzen processors stand out is in the performance department.

The key advantage of the AMD Ryzen mobile chips will be the integrated Vega graphics.

But if AMD can keep the momentum going - which is admittedly a big ask, given Intel's sheer dominance of the mobile processor space - 2018 could be shaping up to be a really interesting place when it comes to laptop processors. There are only two models, the Ryzen 7 2700U and the Ryzen 5 2500U.

AMD has had a banner year thanks to the launch of the many incarnations of it Zen processor architecture (Ryzen, Ryzen Threadripper, EPYC), as well as its Vega graphics cards (Radeon RX Vega 56, Radeon RX Vega 64).

AMD was quite keen to talk about the performance of its Mobile Ryzen APUs, comparing them not only to the previous generation AMD Bristol Ridge FX-9800P APU, but also compare it to some Intel parts, like the latest 8th generation quad-core Core i7-8550U. AMD also says that apps launch up to 41 percent faster. AMD also shows performance leads over Intel in POVRay, PCMark 10 and TrueCrypt, but not in PassMark.

AMD also claims playable framerates in an ultrathin notebook form factor. Unfortunately, these are average FPS and you will need to drop graphics settings to medium or low in order to hit those targets and some games like Overwatch or Quake Champions are hitting an average of just above 40 FPS at 1280x720p resolution. Moreover, 4K streaming is supported by Amazon, Vudu and Netflix.

This new line of processors features two APUs: the Ryzen 7 2700U and the Ryzen 5 2500U. This is probably important, at the very least for marketing reasons, because the 2700U's boosted processor speed is 3.8GHz, compared to the Core i7-8650U's 4.2GHz, despite a lower base frequency of 1.9GHz vs. 2.2GHz.

As far as the graphics chips are concerned, the Ryzen 5 2500U is paired with eight Radeon Vega compute units clocked at up to 1100Mhz while the Ryzen 7 2700U has 10 Radeon Vega compute units that are clocked at up to 1300MHz. Notably, AMD is not publicising base clock speeds, which are 2.2GHz and 2.0GHz respectively.

Both processors are 15W chips and offer four cores and eight threads.

Of course, none of this actually matters unless AMD can get its chips into the hands of consumers. A wider range of Ryzen-based APUs will be available in the new year, said Banta.

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