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AMD releases new line-up of 7th generation APUs: Bristol Ridge and Stoney Ridge APUs

By Dr. Jimmy Tang & Vijay Anand - on 1 Jun 2016, 4:08pm

AMD releases new line-up of 7th generation APUs

The latest AMD 7th generation AMD APU processor, codenamed "Bristol Ridge" and "Stoney Ridge"

AMD announced its entire line-up of 7th generation AMD APUs (Accelerated Processing Units) today. Previously codenamed "Bristol Ridge" and "Stoney Ridge", the new processors introduced into the AMD FX, A-series and E-series line-up promises to improve computing performance when compared to previous generation, whether in games, video rendering or file compression.

In a nutshell, the 7th generation APUs are largely based on their 6th generation Carrizo APU counterparts with the same Excavator processor core utilized and thus based on the same 28nm Bulk CMOS process technology. Even the graphics engine is mostly intact from what debuted on Carrizo - Up to Radeon R7 class graphics based on the GCN 1.2 architecture with up to 8 CUs and 512 shader processors.

So what has changed? Broadly speaking, tweaks to the manufacturing process technology along with a new AVFS (adaptive voltage frequency scaling) algorithm has helped the 7th Gen APU to ramp up clocks to offer higher frequency parts at the same TDP when compared to previous APU generations. The APU has also hopped on the DDR4 bandwagaon and sports and updated UVD block.

Below is the list of all 7th generation AMD APUs announced today:-

7th Gen APU Model Radeon Brand TDP Max / Base CPU Frequency
AMD FX 9830P Radeon R7 Graphics 35W
(25-34 cTDP)
3.7GHz / 3.0GHz
AMD FX 9800P Radeon R7 Graphics 15W
(12-15 cTDP)
3.6GHz / 2.7GHz
AMD A12-9730P Radeon R7 Graphics 35W
(25-45 cTDP)
3.5GHz / 2.8GHz
AMD A12-9700P Radeon R7 Graphics 15W
(12-15 cTDP)
3.4GHz / 2.5GHz
AMD A10-9630P Radeon R5 Graphics 35W
(25-45 cTDP)
3.3GHz / 2.6GHz
AMD A10-9600P Radeon R5 Graphics 15W
(12-15 cTDP)
3.3GHz / 2.4GHz
AMD A9-9410 Radeon R5 Graphics 15W
(10-25 cTDP)
3.5GHz / 2.9GHz
AMD A6-9210 Radeon R4 Graphics 15W
(10-15 cTDP)
2.8GHz / 2.4GHz
AMD E2-9010 Radeon R2 Graphics 15W
(10-15 cTDP)
2.2GHz / 2.0GHz

The new AMD FX, A12 and A10 APUs (part of the Bristol Ridge family and identified with the "P" in their SKU naming) will come with DDR4 memory support for up to speeds of 2400MHz while the A9, A6 and E2 APUs (part of the Stoney Ridge family) will support DDR4 memory up to 2133MHz.

All of the latest processors will support hardware decode of UHD 4K H.264 content, which is an improvement over Carrizo where only the better tier APUs support this level of video decode performance. While Carrizo's UVD block is already plenty powerful, AMD has enhanced that further on the 7th Gen APUs to now claim 4K HEVC/H.265 hardware decode capability, but each series will have varying level of decode support for this codec. The graphics and video features of each series are detailed in the table below:-

Technology AMD FX AMD A12 AMD A10 AMD A9 AMD A6 AMD E2
Vulkan and DirectX 12 with Multiadapter Support X          
Frame Rate Target Control X X        
AMD Eyefinity Technology X X        
AMD Dual Graphics X X X      
AMD Gaming Evolved Client Real-time Record and Play X X X      
Virtual Super Resolution X X X X    
AMD FreeSync Technology X X X X    
VP9 Streaming Decode FHD FHD FHD HD HD HD
Native HEVC Decode UHD UHD UHD FHD FHD FHD
AMD Radeon Graphics Core Next R7 R7 R5 R5 R4 R2
AMD Perfect Picture with AMD Steady Video X X X X X X
Native 4K Display Suport X X X X X X
AMD Turbo Core X X X X X X
AMD Start Now Technology X X X X X X

In terms of performance, AMD claims that it's able to achieve up to 50% general compute performance improvements over its 2-year old "Kaveri" APU. The GPU performance is also looking healthy, with as much as 37% improvement over the previous generation for the AMD FX series. In addition to performance gains, power consumption is also going to be lower with the "Bristol Ridge" with as much as 12% lower power consumption.

The new AMD APUs claim to have as much as 50% performance improvement as compared to its 2-year old "Kaveri" APU.

You can expect the Graphics Core Next (GCN) in the 7th gen AMD FX to deliver up to 37% more speed.

Although still based on the 28nm process technology, improvements made in the silicon has led to lower power consumption.

According to AMD, the latest 7th generation processors will require a change of the motherboard due to its support for newer DDR4 memory DIMMs. This is bad news for those planning to only perform an APU upgrade on their current system.

On the mobile front, these new APUs will also be found in some of the latest OEMs including brands like HP, Dell, Lenovo, Acer and ASUS.

The HP Pavilion All-In-One 24 desktop will come equipped with an AMD A10-9630P APU, AMD Radeon R5 graphics, 16GB DDR4 memory and a 2TB HDD.

The HP Pavilion 15 is a 15-inch laptop with an AMD A9-9410 APU, AMD Radeon R5 graphics, 16GB DDR4 memory and a256GB SSD.

The HP Pavilion 17 comes equipped with an AMD A9-9410 APU, AMD Radeon R5 graphics, 4GB DDR4 memory and a 500GB HDD.

The Acer Aspire E5-553G will come with an AMD A10-9600P APU, AMD Radeon R5 graphics, AMD Radeon R8 M445 graphics, 16GB DDR4 memory and a 1TB+8GB SSHD.

The Acer Aspire E5-523 laptop will come with an AMD A6-9210 APU, AMD Radeon R4 graphics, 4GB DDR4 memory and a 500GB hard disk drive.

The Asus X555Q will come equipped with an AMD FX 9800P APU, AMD Radeon R7 graphics, 16GB DDR4 memory and 512GB SSD storage.

The Lenovo Yoga 510 will come with an AMD A9-9410 APU, AMD Radeon R5 M430 graphics, 8GB DDR4 memory and 128GB SSD for storage.

HP also unveiled their latest HP ENVY x360 convertible laptop with a 15.6-inch diagonal IPS FHD display (UHD 4K optional) and AMD FreeSync support. The laptop's display can be rotated 360 degrees for tent, tablet and laptop modes. The HP ENVY x360 weighs just 4.8 lbs, 18.8mm thin and comes with Bang & Olufsen audio with HP Audio Boost.