AMD Carrizo may have a desktop version too
We haven’t really heard any news from AMD when it comes to processors ever since the company launched the Kaveri chips in 2014. While the GPU business of the company is doing relatively well, AMD seems to have abandoned competition in the high-end CPU market, where Intel rules uncontested and things seem to remain that way. In any case now it is 2015 and we are to see a new AMD APU generation that will be called Carrizo.
In fact the reason to write this article is some more CPU news that came out of AMD – the struggling chip maker has updated its CPU roadmap for this year and what do we get – the same crop of Vishera-based FX processors and a new APU that will be called Carrizo. According to AMD, Carrizo will have four Excavator cores, a modular design just like before but with higher performance, full HSA 1.0 support, a FP4 BGA packaging, 28 nm production technology and up to 35W of TDP for the high-end model. Then we have Carrizo-L – this will be an APU with four Puma+ cores, full HSA 1.0 support, a FP4 BGA packaging, 28 nm production technology and up to 25W of TDP. The ultra low power market will get the Mullins APU Refresh platform with up to four Puma cores, SDP of just 2 watts, 28 nm technology and FT3 BGA packaging. In late 2015 AMD is also to release the first 20 nm Amur and Nolan APUs that will target the tablet market. Finally you will have access to the Kaveri Refresh platform but it is not clear as of now what kind of models we will get – with higher clock speed, lower TDPs or something else.
The interesting news is that there are reports that Carrizo will also come as a desktop part too. This is nice but there is a catch – the chip will be available only as a BGA part, which means that the actual CPU will be soldered to the motherboard. This is where the hard part comes in – if you want to upgrade you will have to change the motherboard. Apart from this Carrizo will come with full support for DirectX 12, a new GCN architecture, and a modified 28 nm SHP process that brings low power consumption. This will make the chip not shine in the high performance desktop segment but having a cooler system is nice too. In addition the desktop version of Carrizo will likely include an integrated Southbridge chip, which will make it incompatible with the current FM2+ infrastructure.
As you can see Carrizo will be an interesting new product, although it will require some investment from you. There is a lot more info needed too to see what and where Carrizo will offer but as of now the new chip seems promising. Now if AMD could offer a really competitive chip in the high-end market…