AMD's upcoming lineup of Raphael processors based on the Zen 4 architecture will come with a new home courtesy of their brand new LGA1718 package, aka CPU socket AM5. According to the latest information, Twitter user @TtLexington has concluded that the AM5 socket could retain cooler compatibility with the prior socket AM4 that's been used since 2017.
The information comes via the recent Gigabyte hack, with tons of details now circulating around the web. Along with details on AMD's upcoming EPYC Genoa processors and workstation Threadripper Chagall CPUs, there are also plenty of other details coming out.
We now have more details about socket AM5. For starters, it looks like the socket will keep the same mounting mechanism as AM4, despite the switch to using an LGA CPU/socket. If the final form factor stays the same, it should potentially be compatible with every existing AM4 design — provided of course that the cooler can handle the heat of the specific CPU model.
That brings us to the TDPs for the various CPUs. It ranges from as low as 45W processor SKUs to 170W SKUs at the top end. 45W and 65W SKUs only need basic cooling and fall into the SR1 category. The 95W SKUs belong to the SR2a group, which presumably requires a bit beefier cooler, along with the 105W SR4 SKUs. Both of those groups should work fine with coolers designed for the Ryzen 5000 series processors.
Beyond that, there are also details on 120W and 170W models. AMD advises the use of a "mid-size air cooler" for the 120W range, which should still be in range of modest coolers like the popular Hyper 212 Evo, though there are certainly better coolers. Meanwhile, for the 170W SKUs, AMD recommends users to use liquid cooling solutions with a radiator area of 280mm or more.
As a bonus, there are measurements of noise levels provided for the various cooling solutions. Only the SR1 models have a 28 dBA rating, while the other categories all end up at 38 dBA. That's still reasonably quiet, though actual case and PC design will play a role.
Regardless of the source, the news that AM5 should work with existing coolers will be welcome. It's on less thing for your upgrade checklist once Zen 4 processors launch. Of course, if you're keeping your old PC in a running state, you'll need to buy a new cooler regardless, but at least the cooler companies won't have to redesign mounting systems.