AMD Unveils Its ‘Next-Generation’ Zen Processor Core

amd dr su

AMD demonstrated its next generation line of processors, powered by the company’s new “Zen” core, at an event in San Francisco Wednesday night. They say the new processor architecture is a ground-up redesign of x86 processor technology and achieves a 40% improvement over last-gen processors in instructions per clock.

The upshot of all this, AMD says, is “unprecedented” improvement in processor speeds, from desktop to server to enterprise models.

The press release for the new technology is rather breathless, but it touches on the desktop-geared 8-core, 16-thread “Summit Ridge” Zen processor, nicknamed “Summit Ridge,” outperforming the similarly spec’d Broadwell-E processor from Intel while using Blender rendering software. They also mention the 32-core, 64-thread “Naples” server processor for enterprise applications.

“The performance and efficiency of our ‘Zen’ core showcases AMD at its best,” said Dr. Lisa Su, AMD’s CEO and president. “Over the last four years we have made significant investments to develop a high-performance, multi-generation CPU roadmap that will power leadership products.”

“An engineer may get one chance in their career to work on a project of this size and scope, and maybe never one with as much potential to impact the future as much as ‘Zen,’” said Mark Papermaster, senior vice president and chief technology officer for AMD.

AMD says the “Summit Ridge” line of desktops processors will probably launch first and will use the AMD AM4 socket, which is “a new unified socket infrastructure that is compatible with seventh generation AMD A-Series desktop processors.” They said they expect the first systems to use this architecture – which will be what matters to gamers – to launch by the end of 2016.

AMD says they’ll be providing additional details about the new processor line at the Hot Chips symposium in Cupertino, California early next week.