The first laptops powered by AMD’s Ryzen 6000 mobile processors should arrive soon with new models on the way from Acer, Asus, Dell (Alienware), Lenovo, Razer, and others. While AMD’s 2022 mobile chip lineup will eventually include a wide range of processors including 15-watt U-series chips and 45+ watt Ryzen 6000HX series processors, the first laptops to hit the streets will be powered by 35-watt HS series processors.
For the most part, AMD’s new chips seem to offer a modest boost in CPU performance when compared with their Ryzen 5000 counterparts. But AMD has moved from a 7nm manufacturing process to 6nm, bringing improved density and efficiency.
Tom’s Hardware reports that while CPU performance gains measured in the single-digit percentages might sound underwhelming at a time when Intel’s 12th-gen Core H-series chips are delivering much bigger gains, AMD seems confident that its approach is more efficient than Intel’s, which will allow the same CPU architecture to scale well to energy-efficient U-series chips and high-performance H-series processor while allowing for long battery life.
Intel’s 12th-gen “Alder Lake” processors use a hybrid architecture that combines high-performance CPU cores with energy-efficient cores, allowing a PC to use just the cores that are needed for a certain task or to fire up all the cores at once. AMD says it’s only using high-performance cores, but they offer the kind of efficiency needed to balance power consumption and battery life in laptops.
|AMD Ryzen 6000 H Series|
|Chip||CPU arch||GPU arch||Cores / Threads||Base / Max freq||L2 + L3 Cache||GPU cores / max freq||Node||TDP|
|Ryzen 9 6980HS||Zen 3+||RDNA 2||8 / 16||3.3 GHz / 5 GHz||20MB||12 / 2.4 GHz||6nm||35W|
|Ryzen 9 6900HS||Zen 3+||RDNA 2||8 / 16||3.3 GHz / 4.9 GHz||20MB||12 / 2.4 GHz||6nm||35W|
|Ryzen 7 6800HS||Zen 3+||RDNA 2||8 / 16||3.2 GHz / 4.7 GHz||20MB||12 / 2.2 GHz||6nm||35W|
|Ryzen 5 6600HS||Zen 3+||RDNA 2||6 /12||3.3 GHz / 4.5 GHz||19MB||6 / 1.9 GHz||6nm||35W|
That said, Tom’s Hardware notes that some of AMD’s claims seem a bit questionable, stating that a Ryzen 9 6900HS processor is up to 2.62X more efficient than a Core i9-12900HK because the former tops out at 35-watts during sustained performance while the later can go as high as 110 watts… but it’s highly unlikely that any laptops will actually have the cooling capabilities to allow Intel’s chip to stay at 110 watts for very long.
Anyway, while it remains to be seen whether AMD’s 6000 chips will be truly competitive with Intel’s Alder Lake processors this year when it comes to CPU performance, AMD will most likely take the lead when it comes to integrated graphics performance.
For the past few years AMD has been using its Radeon Vega architecture for integrated graphics. This year’s chips ship with Radeon 600M graphics based on RDNA 2 architecture and according to the company’s own benchmarks, not only does it outperform Intel’s Iris Xe graphics in gaming benchmarks, but it comes close to NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 1650 discrete GPU.
Right now it seems like Intel may have the edge in CPU performance, while AMD is taking the lead in integrated graphics. But it’s unclear if that will continue to be the case as the companies release more chips: so far we’ve only seen independent reviews of devices powered by H-series processors, and it’s possible that they won’t be reflective of the more energy-efficient U-series chips set to launch later this year.
We may have to wait a little while to see laptops that truly take advantage of AMD’s new integrated GPU because the first laptops to ship will have Ryzen 6000HS chips paired with discrete graphics from AMD or NVIDIA. While the integrated graphics will likely handle some tasks, those discrete GPUs will most likely kick in when you need them most for things like gaming, graphic design, or video editing.