AMD's Lisa Su extends her announcement time during the CES 2023 Keynote

AMD’s Lisa Su extends her announcement time during the CES 2023 Keynote

At this year’s CES, AMD CEO Dr. Lisa Su keynote before the show and came with a plethora of announcements and guests. The keynote topic was high-performance and adaptive computing that helps solve problems. Guests on stage included representatives from HP, Intuitive Surgical, Lenovo, Magic Leap and Microsoft. It also included a former NASA astronaut as a bonus.

Dr. Su made seven key product announcements ranging from energy-efficient computers to extreme processors designed for supercomputers. With all the announcements and guests, it’s no wonder the keynote took significantly longer than planned. Every group at AMD seemed to get a piece of the keyword.

PC update

Despite the current slump in PC sales, most of AMD’s announcements focused on PCs – both desktops and laptops. Of particular interest was AMD’s decision to add a dedicated AI core to its new Ryzen 7040 series notebook processors. AMD Ryzen 7040 is designed to fit into ultra-thin notebooks with 15W to 45W TDPs (thermal design power) and is manufactured using TSMC’s advanced 4nm process. Ryzen 7040 has the most advanced AMD Zen 4 processor cores adapted to the latest RDNA3 GPU architecture.

The Ryzen 7040’s built-in AI technology was developed by Xilinx, which AMD acquired last year. But even before the acquisition, AMD committed to licensing the technology with Xilinx. Xilinx has developed an AI engine for its Versal ACAP adaptive computing product. Details of the Ryzen AI engine, as AMD is now calling it, are yet to be revealed, but the Versal AI Engines are a 2D array of VLIW vector and matrix computing engines. While AI workloads can be run on AMD’s CPUs and integrated GPUs, AMD claims that running these tasks on a dedicated AI engine is more energy efficient, which is why the company introduced its first processor in a notebook. Microsoft EVP and Chief Product Officer Panos Panay was very supportive of Ryzen AI and how Microsoft plans to use it initially for Teams and for other features in the future. We encourage AMD to make Ryzen AI available through open toolchains and APIs in addition to Microsoft’s Studio tools.

It’s great to see AMD really embracing the ubiquity of AI in computing. AMD has GPUs and FPGAs/ACAPs for AI acceleration and is now incorporating AI technology into mainstream laptop processors. Intel will also include an integrated AI accelerator in its Meteor Lake processors later this year.

AMD also brought its RDNA 3 architecture to mobile discrete GPUs with the announcement of the Radeon 7000M series. These new mobile GPUs can power 1080p gaming at the highest gaming settings and support graphics-intensive content creation applications. When you combine AMD Radeon RX 7000M series graphics with Ryzen 7000 series processors, AMD SmartShift RSR technology intelligently splits image rendering, upscaling and presentation requirements between APU and GPU resources to optimize performance. This capability is expected to be available in the first half of 2023.

Desktop PCs also get a processor upgrade. The new X3D Ryzen 7000 series desktop processors are equipped with up to 144MB of cache and have up to 16 cores and 32 threads. The new processors are a little weird in that only one of the two CPU chip clusters in the package gets compound memory, giving the CPU an asymmetric bias. For example, the Ryzen 9 7950X3D has one 8-core processor chip without 3D cache that can be clocked at 5.7 GHz with boost, but the other 8-core chiplet in the processor with stacked 3D cache has more cache memory but a lower boost clock. It will be interesting to see how well OS thread managers and application developers deal with such an asymmetric configuration.

Other PC announcements include the design of the high-performance Ryzen 7045HX notebook processor for larger notebooks, aimed at gamers and creative professionals. This processor uses a chiplet design from the desktop part to deliver up to 16 cores.

The low-key announcement of the AMD Ryzen 7000 series desktop processors was also announced soon. Built on the Zen 4 architecture and with a 65W TDP, this new Ryzen 7000 series processor is optimized for both efficiency and performance. Some cost-optimized AM5 motherboards will also appear before spring.

AI in the data center

Three announcements were made about how AMD is working to advance AI for data center applications: the AMD Vitis Medical Imaging Libraries, the Alveo V70 AI Accelerator and the Instinct MI300 High Performance Computing Accelerator.

AMD announced that its Vitis Medical Imaging libraries are bringing premium medical imaging products to market faster by reducing development time. These software libraries run on AMD Versal SoC devices with AI Engine and provide high-quality, low-latency imaging for medical applications.

AMD also showed its XDNA adaptive AI architecture in a separate PCIe add-in card with the Alveo V70. Based on AMD’s XDNA architecture with AI Engine architecture, Alveo V70 extends ubiquitous artificial intelligence from the edge to the cloud.

Xilinx FPGAs are currently used in the Perseverance Mars rover, so AMD hosted an interview with former NASA astronaut Dr. by Cady Coleman. Dr. Coleman promoted NASA’s agenda of human space travel to the Moon and eventually Mars with the Artemis program. But the broader message was about supporting STEM education and inspiring more people, including women, to follow careers in science.

Dr. Su concluded her keynote with a demonstration of the company’s next monster GPU for high-performance computing – the MI300 – which consists of 13 chips and uses both 2.5D and 3D packaging techniques. It has a total of 146 billion transistors. The MI300 not only offers GPU cores, but also includes three Zen 4 CPU chiplets in the package. The goal of wrapping CPU cores in a GPU cluster is to run tasks closer to the GPU and eliminate transaction latency with the main host CPU. The CPU/GPU cluster will be supported by 128 GB of local HBM (High Bandwidth Memory) in the package. The design is similar to Nvidia’s Grace-Hopper HPC processor, which combines Grace’s ARM CPU in the same package with the Hopper GPU. The MI300 should ship by 2H23.

Numerous performances during the keynote speech by Dr. These showed that AMD continues to deliver top-notch products in PC and high-performance computing. Despite the current downturn in the technology market, AMD continues to invest in new, cutting-edge products and accelerate its AI roadmap.

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