AMD’s Ryzen 7040HS laptop processors, also known as the “Phoenix” series, are being delayed by a month. The processors were announced for a March release at CES 2023, but AMD now says they won’t launch until April. These notebook processor chips are perhaps best known for being the first to include AMD’s RDNA 3 graphics architecture and the company’s new flagship XDNA-powered AI engine.
“To align with platform readiness and provide the best possible user experience, we now expect our OEM partners to ship the first notebooks powered by the Ryzen 7040HS series processors in April,” said an AMD spokesperson. Tom’s Hardware in the statement.
It’s unclear what caused the delay, and AMD has yet to respond to further questions. However, AMD has recently adjusted the specifications of these chips, removing support for the PCIe 5.0 interface and reducing the maximum clocks of the integrated GPU.
The 7040HS “Phoenix” chips are positioned as the company’s most powerful processors for ultra-thin notebooks; notebooks that don’t have as much cooling for the more powerful Dragon Range 7045HX chips. The chips use the Zen 4 processor architecture on a 4-nanometer process with TDPs of 35 to 45 watts. The HS series processors debut AMD’s RDNA 3 graphics in mobile and are the first to use AMD’s new XDNA AI architecture.
AMD’s flagship model, the Ryzen 9 7940HS, is an octa-core/16-thread processor with a boost clock of up to 5.2GHz, while the Ryzen 7 7840HS reaches a boost of 5.1GHz. The lowest-end chip, the Ryzen 5 7640HS has six cores, 12 threads and clocks up to 5.0GHz.
|Model||Cores / Threads:||Boost/base frequency (GHz)||Cache (MB)||TDP (Watt)|
|AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS||8/16||Up to 5.2 / 4.0||40:00||35 – 45:|
|AMD Ryzen 7 7840HS||8/16||Up to 5.1 / 3.8||40:00||35 – 45:|
|AMD Ryzen 5 7640HS||6/12||Up to 5.0 / 4.3||38:||35 – 45:|
The XDNA architecture is designed for AMD’s chips to focus on “real-time AI experiences,” according to AMD’s launch. The technology is based on AMD’s acquisition of Xilinx. AMD integrated FPGA-like technology into Phoenix chips within a year, an impressive feat given the traditional multi-year design cycle of modern semiconductors. The company wrote in a press release that XDNA will be “the first dedicated hardware for artificial intelligence on an x86 processor.”
In many ways, AMD’s Phoenix competes with Apple’s M1 and M2 chips, which include neural engines since Apple Silicon’s release in 2020. The XDNA AI engine is on a chip that is completely monolithic and does not use a chiplet design. Panos Panay, Microsoft’s head of Windows and Surface, suggested that an integrated AI engine could be used for features such as eye contact and video capture. AMD is also working on an API that will enable software developers to develop more advanced applications that will use the XDNA engine to run natively on a laptop. These may include modern AI models in the imagination of ChatGPT or DALL-E.
AMD has moved forward with the release of its most powerful mobile chips, the 7040HX “Dragon Range” series, based on a 5nm process and without XDNA. However, this does not mean that XDNA is the cause of the delay.
AMD hasn’t yet said which OEMs will release laptops with Phoenix chips, though it did mention which companies are working with each of the other chips during the CES announcement.