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Ryzen 5000 Boosts Laptop Performance

February 2, 2021

Author: Linley Gwennap

With its new Ryzen 5000 laptop processors, code-named Cezanne, AMD strikes back against Intel’s Tiger Lake, delivering better performance for ultrathin PCs. This generation’s big upgrade is the Zen 3 CPU, which surpassed Intel’s single-thread performance when it debuted last year in desktop products and appears poised to do the same in laptops. Despite a graphics-performance leap, Tiger Lake slightly trails the older Ryzen 4000 line for gaming on ultrathin systems, and the new Ryzens should extend AMD’s graphics lead. Boasting twice as many CPUs, AMD crushes Intel in multicore performance.

AMD unveiled a full Cezanne lineup for laptops, including U-series parts at 15W TDP, HS-series parts at 35W, and H-series parts at 45W. Tiger Lake is available only at 15W and 28W, but Intel plans to introduce H-series versions later this quarter. The new Tiger Lake-H chips will match Cezanne with eight CPUs, and they also increase clock speeds to take advantage of the larger power envelope. Except for the low-cost Ryzen 5 models, the new AMD products all offer eight CPUs, and the high-end Ryzen 9-5980 has a maximum CPU speed of 4.8GHz.

The Cezanne die features eight Zen 3 CPUs with a 16MB shared L3 cache, twice as large as in the previous-generation Renoir design. It uses the same octa-core Vega GPU as in Renoir but raises the maximum clock speed by 20% to boost performance. To simplify system design, the Cezanne processors have the same interfaces and the same pinout as the previous generation. AMD claims Cezanne already has 150 design wins, more than double the company’s laptop total from two years ago. All the top PC vendors—including Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, and Lenovo—have announced AMD-based laptops.

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