AMD Zen Performance Preview

HardOCP News

[H] News
Joined
Dec 31, 1969
Messages
0
Last week AMD held a private Zen performance preview for a handful of press outlets at the St. Regis Hotel in San Francisco. Well, today AMD has released the complete slide deck containing all the info the company shared at that meeting. So, without further ado, lets get into the slides, shall we?
 

cyclone3d

[H]ardForum Junkie
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Messages
13,267
TAKE MY MONEY!

After looking at those slides, I am really wanting to get a ZEN setup.

Can't wait for actual reviews.
 

Poseur

Limp Gawd
Joined
Oct 7, 2009
Messages
352
Can't wait to see what the actual chips do. Probably building another Intel system to replace an old Phenom X4, but feel free to surprise me, AMD.
 

cyclone3d

[H]ardForum Junkie
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Messages
13,267
does this mean AMD finally caught up to Sandy Bridge?
I've been saying for years that the cache setup was a big problem for AMD CPUs. Looks like they have probably fixed that and more.

I would guess that ZEN is going to be faster than Sandy.

I want a full review ASAP to see what ZEN can actually do.

They are claiming a 40% IPC increase over Excavator, not Bulldozer.

From the slides, it looks like a really sweet setup.
 

FrgMstr

Just Plain Mean
Staff member
Joined
May 18, 1997
Messages
49,046
Wait and see. I really want to see what the final clocks are and how it holds up in testing.

Right now... I'm skeptical.
The whole AMD marketing we saw regurgitated by "journalists" all last week was with the Intel processor downclocked to a matching 3GHz. AMD getting their shit together in the IPC department is a great thing, but if they are lacking when it comes to scaling the clock, I am not sure how it ends up being a win. I was a huge Bulldozer advocate, right up to the moment that the AMD PR rep sat me down on a bench and told me that my expectations were way too high from everything that I had been told by AMD in the previous year. Fool me once...
 

quitessa

n00b
Joined
Nov 29, 2013
Messages
8
I know exactly what you guys mean, I used to be an AMD man with the K6-2 > Athlon > Athlon XP > Athlon 64X2 but then performance compared to Intel dumped with the advent of C2D so I got a Quad Xeon X3210 2.13 and ran it @ 3.2 until it wasn't enough, now I'm running Hex X5650 2.66 @ 4.0 and while it's getting on for 6 years old it produces performance not far behind the latest Intel-Extreme chips so no need to upgrade. I really hope that AMD's got it's act back together again to start pushing Intel to improve again and stop with the lacklustre minor clock bumps and 2-3% ipc improvements.
 

MV75

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
1,025
Yep, was an amd man too from about 1999 onwards with duron/Athlon/a64. Was real innovating times. 955be was my last amd chip in 2009, I upgraded last year to my current xeon 1231v3 and am now not looking back. I guess that zen will finally catchup where intel were 2 gens ago. lol.
 

marzzez

Limp Gawd
Joined
May 24, 2011
Messages
167
Wonder what connectivity they are going to have and/or how refined the chip set will be? Would be nice if they come across
 

Pieter3dnow

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Jul 29, 2009
Messages
6,789
Wonder what connectivity they are going to have and/or how refined the chip set will be? Would be nice if they come across
from The “Zen” Core Architecture

Powered by the AM4 Platform
From 7th Gen APUs to upcoming Zen-based “Summit Ridge” desktop processors, the future-ready AM4 platform features the newest I/O standards and an AMD commitment to support it into the future.

The initial “Zen” cores for “Summit Ridge”-powered desktops will utilize the AMD AM4 socket, a new unified socket infrastructure that is compatible with 7th Generation AMD A-Series desktop processors. With dedicated PCIe® lanes for cutting-edge USB, graphics, data and other I/O, the AMD AM4 platform will not steal lanes from other devices and components. This allows users to enjoy systems with improved responsiveness and the future looking technologies that the AM4 platform provides, resulting in a powerful, scalable and reliable computing solution for all their needs.
 

marzzez

Limp Gawd
Joined
May 24, 2011
Messages
167
Thank you but their statement is a bit vague. Will it boot from mr2, oh yes pcie lane’s but what version and how many? Prob to early for the questions I have, thz though
 

mwnn

n00b
Joined
May 3, 2015
Messages
35
Not sure what the Zen joke is really.
I'm sure the board makers will toss in every available toy they can.
Crimson drivers are improving. I can't really fault any of the previous/current GPUs I've owned; they've delivered performance-wise for a long time. The lowered purchasing cost compared to nVidia being an additional bonus.

Hopefully Zen was/is designed well enough to compete/win against future offerings from Intel - ideally in pure number crunching.
I don't see anyone else stepping up to make an alternative desktop processor.

AMD must realise that they have to come within a few percent of the latest Intel offerings in every relevant area i.e. speed, thermals, noise, socket design/mounting, features etc
If they are so dense that they don't know this they might as well shut down and focus on GPU's right now.
If it doesn't deliver on raw speed then I'm sure [H]ardOCP will quite rightly knock the s**t out of it if it also fails to deliver value for money.

Have the hardware limits been hit? Can CPU's get a great deal quicker?
At least for the majority, existing software doesn't seem to make full use of the currently available processing power.
I'm thinking that if another 6 years goes by and we see the same or less amount of progress (20-25%; old models vs new) then I'm really not going to be upset over buying a high end Zen that matches today's Intel.

I'd love to have Microcenter and cheaper US prices but you can add 20% on top of anything bought over here. And for some places it's even worse 27%!
 
Last edited:

daglesj

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
May 7, 2005
Messages
5,164
Waiting for the huge VIA cpu comeback!

Yeahhhhhhhhhhhh! Year 2000 performance with 2016 technology.
 

USMCGrunt

2[H]4U
Joined
Mar 19, 2010
Messages
3,113
Two things that stand out for me from the slides, the first is the focus on performance improvement for x86 instructions. The other is the final slide in big bold letters "Designed from the ground up for optimal balance of performance and power." To me, this is marketing speak for "Our product wasn't designed to compete on the high end because we still haven't relearned how to do that." Maybe it's a subtle philosophy shift in their message to the public from 'promise the world, deliver a sack of potatoes' to 'promise a tater, deliver a...country'.
 

Ultima99

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Jul 31, 2004
Messages
4,890
Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

I had K6-2. K6-3, Athlon, and AthlonXP systems back in the day. That was all before they fell apart and I went with my i7 920 that crushed AMD. Since then its been a 4770k and E3-1270v5.
 

Cobalt35

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
May 15, 2008
Messages
1,158
Yeah AMD back to their marketing PR bullshit again. "Hey look we're faster than Intel!!!" Sure you are, when you artificially de-clock the Intel CPU. Show me your cpu beating Intel at stock clocks and I'll be impressed. Deliberately go out of your way to obfuscate the results because you know you can't really compete and you can go fuck yourself.

Edit: You know what? At this stage, until AMD can stop with the deliberate lies and misdirection in their marketing, I don't really care if they do bring out a CPU that's faster than Intel or a graphics card that's faster than nVidia. I'm not interested. Start telling the truth about your products and I'll look at you again. Keep up with the blatant lies and misdirection and, as I said, you can go fuck yourself.
 
Last edited:

ManofGod

[H]ardForum Junkie
Joined
Oct 4, 2007
Messages
11,531
I use two different systems, both with FX 8 core processors and they work very well and quite fast. The only disappointment I have ever had with them is that AMD did not offer 8 core steamroller or excavator processors. Now, with Zen coming, that should shake things up quite well one way or the other. It is pretty obvious who will consider AMD and who will not, even if they end up being the fastest. (Which they will in many circumstances but probably not all but, in my opinion, they will end up close enough to be competitive.)
 

ManofGod

[H]ardForum Junkie
Joined
Oct 4, 2007
Messages
11,531
Yeah AMD back to their marketing PR bullshit again. "Hey look we're faster than Intel!!!" Sure you are, when you artificially de-clock the Intel CPU. Show me your cpu beating Intel at stock clocks and I'll be impressed. Deliberately go out of your way to obfuscate the results because you know you can't really compete and you can go fuck yourself.

Edit: You know what? At this stage, until AMD can stop with the deliberate lies and misdirection in their marketing, I don't really care if they do bring out a CPU that's faster than Intel or a graphics card that's faster than nVidia. I'm not interested. Start telling the truth about your products and I'll look at you again. Keep up with the blatant lies and misdirection and, as I said, you can go fuck yourself.
Wow, did AMD kick your dog and kill your cat? :D Did you lose a bunch of money on their stocks or do you just feel animosity towards them just because? :D
 

Pieter3dnow

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Jul 29, 2009
Messages
6,789
Yeah AMD back to their marketing PR bullshit again. "Hey look we're faster than Intel!!!" Sure you are, when you artificially de-clock the Intel CPU. Show me your cpu beating Intel at stock clocks and I'll be impressed. Deliberately go out of your way to obfuscate the results because you know you can't really compete and you can go fuck yourself.
Actually it shows their improvements in instructions per clock cycle nothing more.The performance of Zen is based on a engineering sample so maybe next time they need to buy a Broadwell engineering sample just to appease you ?

Pretty ballsy going up against a retail version ...
 

SonicTron

Snopes is My Fact Checker
Joined
Mar 9, 2000
Messages
5,894
Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

I had K6-2. K6-3, Athlon, and AthlonXP systems back in the day. That was all before they fell apart and I went with my i7 920 that crushed AMD. Since then its been a 4770k and E3-1270v5.
You're too kind, even your 8 year old i7 920 is still as good as most of the AMD offerings
 

GothamsReckoning

Limp Gawd
Joined
Dec 22, 2015
Messages
243
The last slide has a part of the die shot. While you can't see much these slides are definitely getting interesting. This week is also Hot Chips so we should get more info soon.

Edit: Looks like this release is the same as the Hot Chips information about Zen's architecture.
 

Quix

2[H]4U
Joined
Jun 12, 2011
Messages
3,707
Considering how overhyped the RX 480 was, coupled with how insanely overhyped the -dozer series processors were and the Fury, I no longer believe anything AMD announces. I hope this is a competitive chip, but I'll believe it when I see real benchmarks for tech sites I personally trust.

Anandtech has a fairly interesting article about AMD's claims for Zen as well and even they aren't 100% buying in to the hype.
 

pcgeekesq

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Apr 23, 2012
Messages
1,399
So you already knew all the details around the cache and other optimizations ... ?
As far as what they posted, and for anything that matters, yes. They've been out on the internet for a few days.

Architecturally, the highest praise I can offer AMD is that it looks like a passable imitation of Intel's venerable Sandy Bridge.
 

pcgeekesq

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Apr 23, 2012
Messages
1,399
Wow, did AMD kick your dog and kill your cat? :D Did you lose a bunch of money on their stocks or do you just feel animosity towards them just because? :D
Some people hate scammers and con artists. Whether AMD's marketing department is one or the other of those is good question.

Other people may resent AMD screwing the pooch and leaving Intel with no competition in the high end - it wasn't always that way, and it didn't have to be.
 

ChadD

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Feb 8, 2016
Messages
4,526
We are all hoping, we'll just have to see.

It doesn't scare me all that much that they down clocked an intel chip for a comparison. It ran faster on the same terms >.< Proves their architecture is superior... now it will come down to manufacturing. This far out from a launch it should be obvious they aren't running at final clock, if they where... the launch would be now. Intel has done a good job of spending tons of money on Fab... that will be the hurdle AMD has to jump.

The question will be;
Can AMDs > architecture make up for < fab tech.
 

razor1

[H]ardForum Junkie
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
10,155
Actually it shows their improvements in instructions per clock cycle nothing more.The performance of Zen is based on a engineering sample so maybe next time they need to buy a Broadwell engineering sample just to appease you ?

Pretty ballsy going up against a retail version ...

Yes and no, we saw AMD use the same benchmark (different version) with Bulldozer vs. Intel same core CPU where Bulldozer is the supposed winner lol. Blender benchmark is one of the ones AMD has a traditional lead, so its not a good one to even look at.
 

Flexion

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Jul 20, 2004
Messages
1,607
Have to see what these things cost. I mean even if they're slower than Intel's best, if they do it at a cheap price and offer a good bang for the buck, then these will have a chance in the consumer market. Otherwise it's all about performance per watt then if they're going for industrial/server farm use.
 

Pieter3dnow

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Jul 29, 2009
Messages
6,789
Yes and no, we saw AMD use the same benchmark (different version) with Bulldozer vs. Intel same core CPU where Bulldozer is the supposed winner lol. Blender benchmark is one of the ones AMD has a traditional lead, so its not a good one to even look at.
You have no idea what you are talking about. Blender is used as a benchmark but is a rendering program blender.org . It being good or bad is dependant on what people you want to believe. However you want to put it is useful since you can compile the source which would make sense for anything to be considered as a benchmark.
The "benchmark" does not function as you and many like you want it to be , it only shows that AMD made an improvement on their IPC it is in no way tied to retail products.

In other words if AMD comes out with retail Zen and it does not go above 3.5ghz it will lose to retail Broadwell regardless of how the Blender demo ran ...
 

razor1

[H]ardForum Junkie
Joined
Jul 14, 2005
Messages
10,155
You have no idea what you are talking about. Blender is used as a benchmark but is a rendering program blender.org . It being good or bad is dependant on what people you want to believe. However you want to put it is useful since you can compile the source which would make sense for anything to be considered as a benchmark.
The "benchmark" does not function as you and many like you want it to be , it only shows that AMD made an improvement on their IPC it is in no way tied to retail products.

In other words if AMD comes out with retail Zen and it does not go above 3.5ghz it will lose to retail Broadwell regardless of how the Blender demo ran ...

Yeah no, it doesn't show single threaded performance at all, its a program that is extremely mutlithreaded. It doesn't give any idea of what the IPC improvements are.

I'm very familiar with Blender as I'm a 3d artist and have used it at various times...... every single pc that I used blender on, all I wanted the companies to have in their pc's is not clock speed, more cores the better......xeon 10 cores two or four of them at low clocks speeds were the best bang for the buck for them when using blender.
 

raz-0

[H]ardness Supreme
Joined
Mar 9, 2003
Messages
4,605
1) I'm not confident zen will live up to the press releases in real world use. AMD currently occupies a state where they have to prove it to me.
2) Even if zen is decent, will they have a decent chipset out for it on day one, or will it be next revision that has one, or multiple firmware updates that take months, etc?
3) Given AMD is fabless, will they have yield if there is any demand becuase the answers to one and two were good?
 
Top