AMD Demos 8-Core 16-Thread Zen 'Summit Ridge' Desktop Processor At Computex


AMD brought a bag of goodies and a few surprises up its sleeve to Computex, including an affordably priced Polaris part, the $199 Radeon RX 480, and some 7th generation APUs, Bristol Ridge and Stoney Ridge. The Sunnyvale chip designer could have stopped there and nobody would have complained, but before calling it a night, AMD gave the first public demonstration of a desktop CPU based on its high performance Zen architecture.

It started with a short video, which AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su said was "created, edited, rendered, and played back on our new desktop processor with Zen." She then held up the Summit Ridge CPU, an early engineering sample featuring 8 cores and 16 threads, and built with fancy FinFET transistors.

AMD Zen Slide

Zen was "taped out" earlier this year but will begin sampling to select partners in the next few weeks followed by a wider roll out in the third quarter. As has been said before, Dr. Su reiterated that Zen delivers 40 percent more IPC (instructions per clock) than the previous generation. And while Dr. Su didn't call out Intel, she also made clear that Zen is gunning for the top. Part of that strategy entails a new AM4 desktop platform.

"This product is 8 cores, 16 threads. It is in FinFET technology and it is integrated as part of our new AM4 desktop platform. The AM4 desktop platform is a return to desktop for our enthusiasts and our performance fans," Dr. Su added. "And if you think about AM4, think about it integrated top to bottom throughout our desktop lineup."

Zen won't be limited to a single product or market segment. While AMD will bring Zen to desktops first, the company also has plans of rolling out Zen-based solutions to servers, laptops, and embedded solutions.

Dr. Su didn't talk about clockspeeds or pricing, but did say that Zen will launch within the new few months.