AMD will not arrive with Zen 4 in time to compete against Intel’s Alder Lake-S, but it is not really intended. The company seeks to attack its rival head-on in an environment where it is still below market share: that of servers. And with this argument in mind, it will launch its Zen 4 architecture under its new processors. EPYC Genoa, and therefore, these have had priorities in the design and staging.
TSMC faces production delays, but curiously it will arrive on time
It is not so much the fact that AMD architectures its new CPUs as the problem that TSMC currently faces in order to launch the chips. Here two different factors come together that will coexist in time:
- Launch of Zen 3+ at 7nm with V-Cache.
- Launch of Zen 4 EPYC a 5 nm.
The problem is logically that, the time factor, since although at the beginning of the year TSMC already had two work teams for both projects in the first quarter, the first samples took a little longer, almost getting into the second. That is if we talk about Zen 4, which is really the biggest problem due to the production ramp of the new node and its volume.
So how is TSMC going to get there on time by the end of the year? This is where the rumors come in, so take salt and spread it to taste, since apparently Apple has estimated lower sales than expected for its iPhone 13 and although the 5 nm nodes are LP and with Zen 4 they are high performance, the scanners are being used to direct production to AMD.
Raphael already has engineering samples, could arrive earlier than expected
As for Zen 4 for desktop, gaming and professional, the samples have already been provided in this second quarter of the year, so if something leaks it can have a lot of credibility, despite the frequencies being lower in some of them.
What we know about it is that AMD will go up to 12 CCDs with 8 cores in each (EPYC Genoa obviously) but in Raphael they will be restricted to only two CCDs for AM5 and possibly 4 CCD for HEDT with the Threadripper. There are rumors that AMD would keep consumption limits at the cost of frequency, not prioritizing the number of cores as such to reduce the gap with Intel in this regard.
Others, on the other hand, affirm that this will only occur in the gaming sector, that is, in the mainstream, while HEDT would arrive with 8 CCD and 64 cores to address the 40 nuclei of Sapphire Rapids at 10 nm. In any case, the dates seem to be ahead and Genoa would arrive between a point for the beginning of the year and the first quarter, while Zen 4 on desktop and with AM5 (PCIe 5.0 and DDR5) would be at the end of the second quarter in stores, just to compete against Raptor Lake-S and its supposed 24 cores.