AMD beefs up business laptops with Ryzen Pro 4000 mobile processors

Chipmaker touts its Ryzen 5 Pro chips can hold up against some mobile Intel i7 chips.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor
Image: AMD

AMD has announced the unveiling of its business laptop Ryzen 4000 series, consisting of the Ryzen 7 Pro 4750U, Ryzen 5 Pro 4650U, and Ryzen 3 Pro 4450U, all of which will fit within a 15-watt power envelope.

At the top of the line, the 4750U is an eight-core, 16-thread CPU with a 1.7GHz base frequency up to 4.1GHz, that has 12MB of cache; the mass market option, the 4650U, has six cores and 12 threads, slightly smaller 11MB cache, but it has a higher base frequency at 2.1GHz, and only slightly lower peak frequency at 4GHz; while at the lower end, the 4450U has four cores and eight threads, a base frequency of 2.5Ghz that tops out at 3.7GHz, and 6MB of cache.

The Zen 2-based chips are expected to be available within the first half of the year.

Compared to the previous generation, AMD says the Ryzen 7 4750U has 29% higher single-threaded performance and gives a score 132% better than the 3700U on Cinebench multi-threaded performance test. For the integrated graphics, the 4750U is 13% better than the 3700U.

In tests against an Intel i7-10710U -- which is a Comet Lake six-core, 12-thread 14nm chip that has a base frequency of 1.1GHz and can burst up to 4.7GHz while sucking down 15 watts of power -- performed by AMD, the 4750U bests it most of time, with results ranging from 33% down to the Intel chip being 2% faster on certain tests.

However, AMD also ran a series of benchmarks comparing the Ryzen 5 Pro 4650U to the same Intel chip, with the results sitting in a band between -3% up to 36%.

"What you would have seen if you want to look at [these benchmarks] a few years ago, is that AMD across the board here would have been a substantial deficit," AMD Director for its commercial client business Matthew Unangst told journalists.

"When we look at Cinebench 1T, what used to be a large double debit deficit in performance, we've pretty much eliminated that deficit and we're very close to parity, and then as you look across all of these other benchmarks ... our Ryzen 7 Pro part delivers leadership performance across all of these benchmarks -- something that AMD has never been able to do before."

Image: AMD

In terms of battery life, the company is boasting a doubling of performance per watt from its 7-nm process versus its previous 12-nm chips, with around 70% of its gains due to the smaller process.

When combined with other changes that put the chip into lower-power states, the company claims over 20 hours of battery life is possible.

"We are better able to detect parts of the processor or system that have become idle, and we are able to put those into a low power state or put them to sleep to save power and to improve battery life," Unangst said.

"But equally important, we've also been able to detect when parts of the system or the process you need to turn on to deliver high-performance capabilities and we are more quickly turning those parts of the product on and moving them into a high-performance state."

The new chips arrive with AMD Pro technologies, which equate with Intel's vPro products offering fleet management and remote provisioning, but with the addition of what AMD claims is full memory encryption under the name memory guard.

"If you were to experience a physical attack of your PC, it would protect the data in there and it would make it impossible for a user that's trying to steal that data to actually understand what's in the memory," Unangst said.

"By encrypting the system memory, if somebody were to steal a laptop or find a laptop and try to access all that data in the memory, what they would get is a bunch of encrypted data that is nearly impossible to do anything with."

The chips also have an integrated security processor that acts as a root of trust for software and firmware running on the system.

Unangst said unlike in years past, the new processors were quiet and thermally efficient.

"That perception that we know exists in the market around extra heat or fan noise on AMD, while it was true on some platforms years ago, that is no longer an issue that is seen on AMD-based platforms," he said.

"There were a number of concerns and complaints on AMD products and we have really put a strong focus on addressing those."

AMD took the wraps off its 4000 series processors at CES in January.

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