AMD Unveils Ryzen Mobile 7040U Series: Phoenix To Fly Into Thin Notebooksby Gavin Bonshor on May 3, 2023 9:00 AM EST
Back at CES 2023, AMD announced the first wave of Ryzen Mobile parts based on its Zen 4 architecture, the Ryzen Mobile 7040HS series. Based on AMD's Phoenix silicon, which uses TSMC's 4 nm process node to mix Zen 4 CPU cores with AMD's RDNA 3 graphics compute units all in a single, monolithic die, Phoenix is the next generation of high efficiency, highly-integrated AMD silicon. And today, AMD is revealing that Phoenix is going to spread its wings a little farther, with the announcement of the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series for ultraportable notebooks.
Bringing AMD's latest generation technologies down to the thin and light laptop market, the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series follows AMD's traditional cascading launch mobile launch strategy, delivering new silicon into increasingly lower powered devices as chip production ramps up and OEMs finish putting together new designs. Whereas the original 7040HS series is aimed at higher-power, higher performing laptops, the 7040U series tunes the same same silicon for more modest TDPs in the 15 Watt to 30 Watt range, making it better suited for use in ultraportable thin and light laptops – and fully exploiting the efficiency advantages of Zen 4.
We've been expecting the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series for quite some time now – AMD made it clear as far back as CES that a traditional U-series lineup was in the works, but until now we just didn't know when to expect it. Though considering that you still can't buy a 7040HS laptop today, today's 7040U announcement from AMD should not be taken as a sign that 7040U laptops are going to be on retail shelves any time in the immediate future.
AMD Ryzen 7040U Series: Up to 8-Cores With RDNA 3 Graphics
AMD's Ryzen Mobile 7040 series spans multiple key mobile product categories, ranging from the entry-level, which AMD segments as 'everyday computing' to its 'extreme gaming and creator' lineup for high-end and powerful gaming laptops. At the bottom of AMD's Pheonix Point series for mobile, the new AMD Ryzen Mobile 7040U series is comprised of four SKUs, which range from 8-core parts down to 4-cores; all of which 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 are 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 scheme to make it somewhat easier for users to decipher what all the digits and characters in the product name mean. For the Ryzen Mobile 7040U series, the first digit represents the model year, with 7 being used for 2023, while the second digit represents the market segment, e.g., Ryzen 7 = 7, Ryzen 5 = 5/6, and Ryzen 3 = 3/4. The third digit (4) represents the CPU architecture of the product, so in the case of the 7040, it uses its latest Zen 4 cores.
The last character (suffix) is perhaps the most important indicator of the market segment, as it relates to the TDP and form factor, as the U relates to being a 15-30 W part. For those of you playing at home, this is a slight increase in the TDP window over previous generations – where the U series was 15-28 W – though with laptop vendors able to set their TDPs wherever they like, official TDPs are more of loose guidelines these days anyhow.
|AMD Ryzen 7040U Mobile CPUs (Phoenix 4nm)|
|iGPU||iGPU CUs||iGPU Freq||L3 Cache
|Ryzen 7 7840U||8/16||3300||5100||Radeon 780M||12||Up to 2.7 GHz||16||15-30W|
|Ryzen 5 7640U||6/12||3500||4900||Radeon 760M||8||Up to 2.6 GHz||16||15-30W|
|Ryzen 5 7540U||6/12||3200||4900||Radeon 740M||4||Up to 2.5 GHz||16||15-30W|
|Ryzen 3 7440U||4/8||3000||4700||Radeon 740M||4||Up to 2.5 GHz||8||15-30W|
Looking at the four Ryzen 7040U SKUs for thin and light AMD-based notebooks, all four of its 'Pheonix' based APUs include AMD's RDNA 3 Radeon 700M series integrated graphics. Starting with the premier model, the Ryzen 7 7840U is an 8C/16T part with a base frequency of 3.3 GHz and a turbo frequency of up to 5.1 GHz. It has a combined total cache of 24 MB, with 16 MB of L3 cache for the entire chip and 1 MB of L2 cache per core, for a total of 8 MB of L2 cache.
Moving down the stack is a pair of Ryzen 5 models, the Ryzen 5 7640U and Ryzen 7540U, both of which include 6 CPU cores. The Ryzen 5 7640U is the faster of the two chips, with a 300 MHz bump on CPU base frequency over the 7540U (3.5 v.s 3.2 GHz), though both APUs have a turbo frequency of up to 4.9 GHz. Curiously, AMD is also using this point as the dividing line between what parts do or do not get the Ryzen AI co-processor; the upper-tier 7640U comes with it, but the lower-tier 7540U does not. Past that, the Ryzen 5 7640U and Ryzen 5 7540U are 6-core parts, so they have 16 MB of L3 cache and 6 MB of L2 cache.
As these are Ryzen 5 mobile Zen 4 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 CUs with a maximum frequency of up to 2.6 GHz. In comparison, the Ryzen 5 7540U has the lower spec Radeon 740M with 4 CUs, although both iGPUs feature the same 16 ROPs/2 RB+ blocks.
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 3.0 GHz, a turbo frequency of up to 4.7 GHz. This part also includes the Radeon 740M (4 CU) integrated graphics. As this is a 4-core part, AMD has significantly reduced the amount of available cache, for a combined total of 12 MB that's split into 8 MB of L3 cache and 4 MB of L2 cache.
Block diagram of the AMD Radeon 780M integrated graphics
It's worth pointing out that the Radeon 780M with 12 compute units (CU) has four Render Backends (RB+) blocks within the silicon, while both the Radeon 760M (8 CU) and Radeon 740M (4 CU) feature just two RB+ blocks. Compared to the Ryzen Mobile 6000 series, AMD has also improved the graphics frequencies, with the Radeon 780M clocking up to 2.7 GHz, which is 300 MHz faster than the Radeon 680M, which hit up to 2.4 GHz.
AMD Ryzen 7040U With Ryzen AI: One Xilinx XDNA Block Included
AMD's acquisition of Xilinx, which closed in February of last year, means they have been able to feed Xilinx's expertise and architecture into its latest Zen 4 products. The most prominent example is what AMD calls Ryzen AI, which is part of Xilinx's XDNA architecture. This XDNA-based architecture has been enabled within two of the four Ryzen 7040U series SKUs, with the top two SKUs, the Ryzen 7 7840U and Ryzen 5 7640U, getting access to the Ryzen AI block integrated into the silicon. The inclusion of 'Ryzen AI' is to bolster the capability of AMD's Phoenix processors in AI inference workloads, offering more efficient task-specific silicon than what the CPU or GPU are capable of.
Another interesting highlight of AMD Ryzen AI is that it directly supports Microsoft's Studio Effects pack within Windows 11, which AMD claims can only be enabled by a dedicated engine like AMD Ryzen AI. While an interesting inclusion to the silicon for AI workloads, AMD hasn't provided or published any expected performance figures to accompany the announcement.
While we typically take a robust stance in digesting in-house performance figures, we usually don't take these at face value with in-house benchmarks optimizing things for favorable results. AMD did, however, provide some compute, and gaming performance figures comparing the performance of the Ryzen 7 7840U to Intel's Core i7-1360P and compute performance against Apple's M2 silicon.
AMD is claiming up to 175% gains in Passmark 10 performance over Apple's M2 chip while offering up to 228% Media Encode performance over the Core i7-1360P; these are undoubtedly best-case figures and are to be taken with a pinch of salt. Interestingly in the gaming performance figures, which it put up its Ryzen 7 7840U with Radeon 780M integrated graphics again Intel's Core i7-1360P with Iris Xe graphics, it's not too surprising to see that the Radeon 780M performed between 130% and 239% better than Intel in specific titles. If nothing else, AMD typically invests in more GPU silicon for their high-end mobile processors.
Regarding battery life, AMD states that it has heavily invested in efficiency leadership designed to bolster battery life by implementing Smart Power Management. As with previous announcements of its 7040HS series, AMD has yet to indicate how long battery life might be. Still, as partners and notebook vendors start to integrate Ryzen 7040U APUs with Zen 4 into their solutions, we'll eventually see how efficient AMD's Ryzen Mobile 7040U 15-30 W chips are compared to the previous generation.
Ryzen 7040U Launch: No Date as of Yet, But Expected Very Soon
One of the most significant talking points surrounding AMD's Ryzen 7040 mobile series is when they will launch. Early indications from AMD stated that we should start seeing broader adoption of its 7040 chips sometime in March. AMD announced to us in mid-March that it had pushed back the launch of its Ryzen Mobile 7040HS series until April.
As for the AMD Ryzen Mobile 7040U series, AMD isn't 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 we'll find out more about the specific laptops in development and their expected release dates at that show.
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lemurbutton - Wednesday, May 3, 2023 - linkWon't hold a candle to M1, let alone M2 and the upcoming M3. Reply
supdawgwtfd - Wednesday, May 3, 2023 - linkGet back to me when you can run Windows on that hardware well.
Until then, Mac will continue to be niche and the world will run in x86 Reply
lemurbutton - Wednesday, May 3, 2023 - linkThe best Windows laptop is literally an M2 Max Macbook Pro running Parallels. Reply
JustAnotherITGuy - Wednesday, May 3, 2023 - linkLol, are you for real? Listen, it's obvious you're a fan of the fruit, but I use both for my job and your statement just isn't true. The M series lose their luster when you throw anything that isn't apple at it. Citrix and MS Teams? How does 7 hrs of battery life sound. The Yoga 7i and Galaxy Book3 Pro both last longer than that with an identical workload.
Apple has its niche and they make some of the nicest casual computing / final cut pro machines... but they aren't the best work machine, let alone windows machine for enterprise applications. Reply
mukiex - Wednesday, May 3, 2023 - linkThe best Windows ARM laptop is an M2 Macbook Pro.
The best Windows laptop is probably dependent on your needs, but it ain't that, chief.
I mean, look at the OpenData tests for Blender. An RTX 3050 laptop is taking out the $4k variant of the Mac Studio in rendering. Different machines for different needs. Reply
evolucion8 - Thursday, May 4, 2023 - linkSorry to burst your bubble, but even the 6900HX gave the M2 a run for its money in several benchmarks and the power consumption gap wasn't that wide. Reply
Kangal - Saturday, May 6, 2023 - linkBased on the power envelope, it seems we're comparing the wrong things.
The M2 should be compared to the Base Z1 (8W), M2 Pro (10c/16g) against the Z1 Extreme (15W), and the full M2 Pro (12c/19g) against the 7840U (25W). It's trickier comparison with the 40W M2 Max (12c/30g) versus the AMD 7840H (35W). Or the 50W full M2 Max (12c/38g) versus the AMD 7940HS (55W).
So that would make it less interesting, since I expect macOS and ARM to have a sizeable advantage. But just because Windows and x86 are 1-2 generations (or more) behind is NOT the entire reason to switch platforms. It really boils down to the user and their needs, specifically.
usiname - Wednesday, May 10, 2023 - linkTo much bulls.. on one place, even M2 non pro has power consumption of 21w let alone m2 pro (12c) Reply
timecop1818 - Thursday, May 4, 2023 - linkFor the price of that you can buy an x86 laptop that will absolutely DESTROY anything from crapple Reply
name99 - Wednesday, May 3, 2023 - linkA more interesting direction is to consider why this claim might be true (in terms of HW, if you are not utterly locked to x86).
In terms of cores, Apple has 4 P at the low-end, 6 midrange (Pro) 8 at the high end (Pro and Max). E cores basically catch up the extra performance from hyperthreading. Apple frequencies are lower, but IPC is higher, so single core is essentially a wash; but Apple can sustain that IPC across all the cores whereas AMD will have to dial back the frequency when all cores are working.
In terms of GPU, more or less nV, AMD, and Apple all have the same sort of performance in what they call a core, or SM, or CU. At the low end M2 Apple gives you 8 or 10 of these (M2) at the midrange 16 or 19 of these (Pro). So at comparable points Apple is ahead in GPU. Likewise at comparable points Apple gives you more memory bandwidth, both for CPU (nice) and GPU (essential).
Finally Apple has a very nice (probably unmatched) media engine including really good H.265 encoding and a low power inference engine (which sounds good but remains mostly unused still, on both the Apple side and even more so the x86 side).
And other stuff like the SSD engine and the Secure Enclave (which doesn't seem to hit frequent problems the way these things all seem to on the x86 side – maybe that's unfair to AMD, I don't know the details of which TMP has which problems).
It's not crazy, if you can live in a Windows ARM world, to want to do so on a Mac, in the same way that plenty of people used an x86 Mac as their default Windows or Linux machine. Reply