Rumor | Roadmap enlists AMD processor codenames expected till 2022; No hint of AMD Ryzen desktop CPUs indicated for 2021, but will ARM K12 be revived?
AMD will be launching the Zen 3-based Ryzen 4000 desktop CPUs in a few months from now. Before that, we may get to see the company launch Ryzen 4000 APUs for desktop based on Zen 2 along with possible Matisse refreshes. Now, known leakster Komachi has put out a list of codenames of upcoming AMD parts till 2022 based on his findings.
On the server side, we find that Genesis this year would be succeeding the current Starship Epyc parts and will continue to support the SP3 socket. However, Floyd next year will require a new SP5 socket. Whether the new socket requirement will trickle down to mainstream is not clear at this point. But from the table, we see Cezanne desktops APUs use socket AM4 with Cezanne mobile APUs continuing on FP6 BGA similar to Renoir.
Ryzen 5000 is expected to transition to 5nm, which may make re-routing the much smaller circuits to the current socket pins AM4 pins rather tedious. We will have to wait and see whether this would prompt AMD to devise a new socket as a lot also depends on when new industrial I/O tech is available. An unnamed Server Embedded CPU is also expected this year to succeed Snowy Owl.
Ryzen Embedded will see a refresh to Grey Hawk from the current AMD Ryzen V1000 (Great Horned Owl). If the original Ryzen V1000 processor is anything to go by, we can expect Grey Hawk to feature a Ryzen 3000-series embedded CPU and a Vega 8 iGPU similar to the one in Ryzen 4000 Renoir.
For HEDT, we will see the Threadripper 4000 codenamed Genesis Peak SP3r3 release this year, which will be based on the 7nm+ process similar to Vermeer. The table also indicates a Dali APU series for low-power desktops and interestingly an RV2X part for low-power mobile that would succeed the Stoney Ridge A-series APUs. RV2X is the codename usually designated for AMD embedded low-power parts.
For mainstream desktop, the 5nm successor to Vermeer is not codenamed but the one in 2022 is named Raphael with no indications of socket type. This seems to align with an earlier prediction by Gamers Nexus that we may not see any worthwhile mainstream desktop AMD CPU launches in 2021. On the APU side, Rembrandt is expected to succeed Cezanne in 2022 but again, there is no clarity on socket type.
Microsoft will continue ordering custom Ryzen parts for the Surface Laptop. The Ryzen 7 3780U and Ryzen 5 3580U codenamed Winston are Surface Edition Ryzen processors powering the Surface Laptop 3. The successor this year is indicated as Acton, which may likely move to FP6 BGA and be a derivative of the Renoir APUs.
Will AMD re-consider ARM?
An ARM CPU called K12 FFX is also being indicated. Back in 2016, AMD announced the K12 Core chip, a project led by then AMD lead CPU architect Jim Keller based on the 64-bit ARMv8 design. However, the project seems to have been shelved and we haven't heard of any K12 news since then.
There is a possibility that K12 may be revived again possibly for ultra-low power notebooks, as semi-custom silicon for smartphones to take on Qualcomm and the likes, or even for servers. The ARM design does make sense for ultrabooks in the long run. Intel, though not licensing an ARM design, is already offering Lakefield chips in a big.LITTLE architecture with even Alder Lake-S expected on similar lines. There are strong indications of Apple going the ARM route with a future MacBook Air, and Windows on ARM laptops may finally get to pick up steam once the software compatibility issues are ironed out and native ARM64 apps are available.
All said and done, do note that this information is solely based on rumors and must be taken with a pinch of the proverbial salt as plans can still change in the runup to launch.