The next generation of hybrid AMD processors will have support for DDR5 and Navi 2 graphics
Brief: Linux source code updates confirmed that the next generation of AMD Ryzen APUS, codenamed Van Gogh, will have support for DDR5/LPDDR5 memory and will use integrated Navi 2 GPUs.
Although little is known about van Gogh's architecture, we know that it will use Zen 2 processor cores built on a 7-nanometer CMC process, similar to the current Reisen 3000 proposals. It is expected to be designed for low-power laptops, but may also have the appearance of a desktop computer.
If there are no surprises, van Gogh will be the first series of large custom processors, including support for DDR5 memory, as well as its laptop and mobile counterpart LPDR5. The JEDEK Council, which ratified the memory technology standards, only finalized the DDR5 specification in July.
DDR5 memory will be about twice as fast as DDR4 memory, although SK Hynix suggests they are already running on 8400 MT/s sticks, which is almost three times the default speed on DDR4. Other advantages of DDR5 include a four-fold increase in density, doubling the length of the pre-sample, a slight reduction in the minimum voltage, and the ability to treat a single stick as in a two-channel configuration.
APUS are particularly sensitive to memory speed, since integrated GPUs do not have access to the selected VRAM, so upgrading to DDR5 should lead to a significant increase in graphics performance. This, as well as the advantages of Navi 2, should make these APUS excellent for casual games and other video tasks. The low-level GPU may become an endangered species as van Gogh and its competitors, lake tiger and lake Alder, become more common.
Van Gogh's predecessor, Renoir (aka rezen 4000), was launched in January, so AMD may release the next generation of APUS at a similar time next year, although we should see how they handle Zen 3 and big Navi over the next few weeks.