Phoenix fly in thin notebooks

Back at CES 2023, AMD announced the first wave of Ryzen Mobile parts based on the Zen 4 architecture, the Ryzen Mobile 7040HS series. Based on AMD’s Phoenix silicon, which uses TSMC’s 4nm process node to mix Zen 4 CPU cores with AMD’s RDNA 3 graphics compute units all on a single monolithic die, Phoenix is ​​the next generation of highly efficient, highly integrated AMD silicon. And today, AMD reveals that Phoenix will be spreading its wings a little further, with the announcement of the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series of ultraportable laptops.

Bringing AMD’s latest generation technology to the thin and light laptop market, the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series follows AMD’s traditional cascading launch strategy for mobile launches, bringing new silicon into increasingly lower-power devices as chip production increases and end equipment manufacturers ramp up. Original collection of new designs. Whereas the original 7040HS series targeted high-powered, high-performance laptops, the 7040U series adjusts the same silicon for more modest TDPs in the 15W to 30W range, making it better suited for use in ultra-thin and light laptops. And take full advantage of Zen 4’s efficiency benefits.

We’ve been anticipating the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series for some time now — AMD made it clear as early as CES that a traditional U-series lineup was in the works, but until now we didn’t know when to expect it. While you still can’t buy a 7040HS laptop today, today’s 7040U announcement from AMD shouldn’t be taken as an indication that 7040U laptops will be on retail shelves anytime in the near future.

AMD Ryzen 7040U series: up to 8 cores with RDNA 3 graphics

AMD’s Ryzen Mobile 7040 Series spans several major mobile product categories, from the entry-level, which AMD calls “everyday computing,” to the “extreme gamers and creators” range of high-quality, powerful laptops. At the bottom of AMD’s Pheonix Point mobile series, the new AMD Ryzen Mobile 7040U series consists of four SKUs, which range from 8 cores to 4 cores; They all include AMD’s RDNA 3 integrated graphics. Phoenix also introduces AMD’s Ryzen AI technology, an FPGA-based AI engine developed by Xilinx, which AMD claims is the first AI processor of its kind and is designed to accelerate AI workloads.

As they announced at CES 2023, AMD has updated its mobile naming system to make it easier for users to decipher what all the numbers and letters in a product name mean. For the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series, the first digit represents the model year, 7 is used for 2023, and the second digit represents the market segment, for example, Ryzen 7 = 7, Ryzen 5 = 5/6, and Ryzen 3 = 3/4. The third number (4) represents the CPU architecture of the product, so in the case of the 7040, it uses the latest Zen 4 cores.

The last letter (suffix) is probably the most important indicator of market segment, as it relates to TDP and form factor, as U relates to being the 15-30W segment. For those of you who play at home, this is a slight increase in the TDP window over previous generations – where the U series was 15-28W – although with laptop vendors able to set their TDPs wherever they want, the official TDPs are more loosely principled guiding these days anyway.

AMD Ryzen 7040U Mobile CPUs (Phoenix 4 nm)
Anand Tech c/v a base
Frequency (MHz)
iGPU processor iGPU controllers iGPU frequency L3 Cache
Ryzen 7 7840U 8/16 3300 5100 Radeon 780M 12 up to 2.7 GHz 16 15-30 watts
Ryzen 5 7640U 6/12 3500 4900 Radeon 760M 8 up to 2.6 GHz 16 15-30 watts
Ryzen 5 7540U 6/12 3200 4900 Radeon 740M 4 up to 2.5 GHz 16 15-30 watts
Ryzen 3 7440U 4/8 3000 4700 Radeon 740M 4 up to 2.5 GHz 8 15-30 watts

Looking at four Ryzen 7040U SKUs for AMD-based thin and light laptops, all four “Pheonix”-based APUs have AMD’s RDNA 3 Radeon 700M integrated graphics. Starting with the first model, the Ryzen 7 7840U is an 8C/16T part with a base frequency of 3.3GHz and a turbo frequency of up to 5.1GHz. It has a combined total cache of 24MB, with 16MB of L3 cache for the entire chip and 1MB of L2 cache per core, for a total of 8MB of L2 cache.

Moving down the stack are a pair of Ryzen 5 models, the Ryzen 5 7640U and Ryzen 7540U, both of which have 6 CPU cores. The Ryzen 5 7640U is the faster of the two chips, with a 300MHz bump on the CPU base frequency over the 7540U (3.5 vs. 3.2GHz), though both APUs have a turbo frequency of up to 4.9GHz. Oddly, AMD also uses this point as a dividing line between which parts you get or don’t get the Ryzen AI co-processor; The upper layer 7640U comes with it, but the lower layer 7540U does not come with it. Next, the Ryzen 5 7640U and Ryzen 5 7540U are 6-core parts, so they have 16MB of L3 cache and 6MB of L2 cache.

Since these are Zen 4 mobile Ryzen 5 APUs, they include AMD’s Radeon 700M graphics. The Ryzen 5 7640U has the better iGPU of the two, with the Radeon 760M with 8 controllers clocked at a maximum frequency of 2.6GHz. In comparison, the Ryzen 5 7540U has lower specs than the Radeon 740M with 4 CUs, even though both iGPUs feature the same 16 ROPs / 2 RB+.

The entry-level option to AMD’s Zen 4 7040U series chips is the Ryzen 3 7440U, which is a quad-core APU (4C/8T) with a base frequency of 3.0GHz, turbo frequency up to 4.7GHz. This part also includes integrated Radeon 740M (4 CU) graphics. Since this is a quad-core part, AMD has significantly reduced the amount of cache available, with a total of 12MB broken down into 8MB of L3 cache and 4MB of L2 cache.

Diagram of the AMD Radeon 780M integrated graphics

It should be noted that the Radeon 780M with 12 Compute Units (CU) has four Render Backends (RB+) blocks inside the silicon, while the Radeon 760M (8 CU) and Radeon 740M (4 CU) both feature only RB+ blocks. Compared to the Ryzen Mobile 6000 series, AMD has also improved graphics frequencies, with the Radeon 780M clocking in at 2.7GHz, which is 300MHz faster than the Radeon 680M, which clocks in at 2.4GHz.

AMD Ryzen 7040U with Ryzen AI: Includes one Xilinx XDNA block

AMD’s acquisition of Xilinx, which closed in February of last year, means that it has been able to feed Xilinx expertise and architecture into its latest Zen 4 product. The prime example is what AMD calls Ryzen AI, which is part of Xilinx’s XDNA architecture. This XDNA-based architecture is enabled in two of the four Ryzen 7040U series SKUs, with the two largest SKUs, the Ryzen 7 7840U and Ryzen 5 7640U, accessing the Ryzen AI stack built into the silicon. The inclusion of Ryzen AI aims to leverage the ability of AMD’s Phoenix processors in AI inference workloads, providing task-specific silicon more efficient than what a CPU or GPU can do.

Another interesting feature of AMD Ryzen AI is that it directly supports the Microsoft Studio Effects package within Windows 11, which AMD claims can only be enabled with a custom engine like AMD Ryzen AI. While there is an interesting inclusion in silicon for AI workloads, AMD didn’t provide or publish any projected performance numbers to accompany the announcement.

While we usually take a strong stance on internalizing internal performance numbers, we usually don’t take it at face value with internal standards improving things for positive results. However, AMD has provided some computing and gaming performance numbers that compare the Ryzen 7 7840U’s performance to that of the Intel Core i7-1360P and calculate the performance against Apple’s M2 silicon.

AMD claims a gain of up to 175% in Passmark 10 performance on Apple’s M2 chip while offering up to 228% in Media Encode performance on a Core i7-1360P; These are undoubtedly the best numbers and should be taken with a pinch of salt. Interesting in the gaming performance numbers the Ryzen 7 7840U with integrated Radeon 780M graphics once again put out Intel’s Core i7-1360P with Iris Xe graphics it’s not too surprising to see that the Radeon 780M performs between 130% and 239% better From Intel at specific addresses. If nothing else, AMD typically invests in more GPU silicon for its high-end mobile processors.

In terms of battery life, AMD states that it has invested heavily in efficiency driving designed to enhance battery life by implementing intelligent power management. As with previous announcements for the 7040HS series, AMD has yet to specify long battery life. However, as partners and laptop vendors begin to integrate Ryzen 7040U APUs with Zen 4 into their solutions, we’ll eventually see how much more efficient AMD’s Ryzen Mobile 7040U 15-30W chips are compared to the previous generation.

Ryzen 7040U launch: No date yet, but expected very soon

One of the major talking points surrounding AMD’s Ryzen 7040 mobile series is its release date. Early indications from AMD indicated that we should start seeing broader adoption of the 7040 chipset sometime in March. AMD announced to us in mid-March that it had delayed the launch of the Ryzen Mobile 7040HS series until April.

For the AMD Ryzen Mobile 7040U series, AMD is not announcing any kind of release date or expected availability date at this time. Given the timing of AMD’s announcement — a few weeks before Computex — we expect to find out more about the specific laptops in development and their expected release dates at that show.

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