As Computex this year heats up, the big surprise for many is the series of announcements made by AMD yesterday. Besides the big news on the company’s new RX480 Polaris GPU, it has also announced a new generation – the seventh – of the A-Series processors.
Formerly known as “Bristol Ridge” and “Stoney Ridge,” the 7th Generation of the AMD FX, A-Series and E-Series APUs (Accelerated Processing Units) promise to deliver vast improvements in performance compared to its predecessor. AMD has boasted double-digit gains on the APUs for three areas: gaming, video rendering, and file compression.
With the new processors, consumers can now also enjoy a higher level of gaming experience for less thanks to technologies like DirectX 12, AMD FreeSync and AMD Dual Graphics. In addition, AMD’s Advanced Power Management (APM) technology is able to deliver an increase in performance for basic computing tasks, while maintaining excellent power efficiency even when mobile. 4K multimedia playback will be another feature that the new chips can help with.
“At AMD, we are inspired to make every second people use their PC more immersive, productive, and energy efficient,” said Jim Anderson, senior vice president and general manager, Computing and Graphics Business, AMD. “We love the PC, and we show it in the compelling mobile experiences made possible by our 7th Generation AMD FX and A-Series Processors, which are the culmination of our ongoing pursuit of leadership graphics and computing capabilities in the most energy efficient processor designs.”
The new APUs are aimed at the mainstream notebook segment, which we’ve predicted as much. AMD promised smooth multitasking and fast start-up (boot-up) times, as well as premium video streaming and playback features, all achieved with greater power efficiency. According to Anderson, the new APUs are roughly 50% better in graphics and compute performance when compared to Intel’s Core i7 chips. At the same time, the chip maker has been able to make its new high-end AMD FX 9800P processor consume 12% less power in productivity task when compared to its predecessor – the FX-8800P.
AMD has positioned its new processors thus: “Stoney Ridge” A-Series processors for entry level users, while the high-performing “Excavator” – belonging to the AMD A9, A6, and E2 series – will handle premium video, mainstream level gaming, and a wider range of more complex tasks. Already, AMD has gotten its OEM partners to support its new series of APUs, with new notebook designs expected from Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, and Lenovo. Many of these are expected to be announced after Computex 2016.