AMD Socket AM5 Renders Reportedly Expose Advantages Over Intel LGA 1700

AMD Socket AM5
(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

AMD's Socket AM5 will be an important change for PC DIYers as we voyage through 2022 and see a new battle form for the top spot on our list of Best CPUs. The socket is scheduled to debut in the second half, alongside AMD Ryzen 7000 'Raphael' CPUs based on Zen 4 and fabbed on TSMC's 5nm process. Today, Igor's Lab has published diagrams that purportedly outline the new CPU-to-motherboard design and assembly and shared some interesting insights regarding AMD's move from PGA to LGA sockets.

AMD Socket AM5 is due to debut in the second half of this year and will be launched first for PC enthusiast motherboards catering for AMD Ryzen 7000 'Raphael' CPUs. The new AMD-designed LGA socket has 1718 pins, and is therefore referred to as LGA1718. The first motherboards sporting this socket will kickstart the AMD 600-series chipsets. In addition, AMD recently launched its Ryzen 6000 'Rembrandt' APUs for mobile, and desktop versions of these APUs will be made available for Socket AM5 too, at some later date.

AMD's move from PGA to LGA will be broadly welcomed by PC DIYers, as it should lessen the incidence of contact pin injury misery. The 1718 fragile pins are more naturally protected by the LGA format, nestling in the motherboard socket and kept covered until seconds before CPU installation.

It seems natural that AMD's LGA socket will look like a close relative of Intel's socket. However, Igor's diagrams reveal some extra finesse and thought from AMD. Igor suggests that what we see here is AM5 v2, as it has improved rigidity and pressure distribution over a previous iteration he has seen.

(Image credit: Igor's Lab)

In the diagram to the left, you can see the Force Frame highlighted in blue. It features two pressure-spreading lugs and a sizable lug described as the Cam Force Application Region. Moreover, the design is said to mix the strength of the AM4 backplate design with up to eight fixing points for the even distribution of firm pressure.

According to the source, you can use a dual-point fixed cooler up to 500g. These mounting points are such that they should make backward compatibility with a multitude of AM4 coolers quite easy. However, it is noted that cooler designs with their own backplates would need to be adapted. Another thing to note is that coolers lighter than 500g will probably need to be secured by marrying up and replacing the four outer screws of the Stiffener Frame assembly.

Further Information About AM5 and the First Processors That Will Use It

For some further reading regarding AMD AM5 and new CPUs and APUs which will use this socket, we recently interviewed David McAfee, the Corporate VP and GM of the Client Channel business. McAfee told us that Ryzen 6000 Rembrandt desktop APUs will be DDR5 only. However, we do not know whether Ryzen 7000 'Raphael' Zen 4 CPUs (second half of this year) will wind back on this if need be, to offer dual DDR4 and DDR5 support.

Another interesting nugget shared in the same report, this one from our conversation with AMD CEO Lisa Su, was that AMD's AM5 socket for desktop PCs would remain as the leading-edge platform for quite some time, perhaps as long as the AM4 socket that is now entering its fourth year of service.

Mark Tyson
Freelance News Writer

Mark Tyson is a Freelance News Writer at Tom's Hardware US. He enjoys covering the full breadth of PC tech; from business and semiconductor design to products approaching the edge of reason.

  • InvalidError
    If AMD never meant for AM5 to support DDR4, then the necessary flexibility might be missing from the socket pinout itself and adding it after-the-fact may not be an option.
  • wifiburger
    DavidMV said:
    Also, if it isn't already in the silicon there is zero chance they could add it at this point and still release this year. Testing and validation takes way too long. You don't just add things like that on a whim. You kind of set things in stone a couple of years in advance.

    There's 0 chance AM5 desktop will go according to plan. DDR5 is nowhere to be found.
    What ever will be produced this year will 100% go to laptop OEMs & new phones.

    You might have a few kits here & there at crazy prices and computer memory is worthless when it's 500$+

    There's also the stigma from the 1st chipset on Zen... That garbage 300serie that was abandoned after day1 release ! There's no way I'm jumping on this new platform.

    If 13th gen(24 cores) still performs the same on DDR4 vs DDR5 I might jump over to Intel and ignore this DDR5 from Intel & Amd.
  • jacob249358
    Asus could be making fat stacks on those ddr4 to ddr5 converters if they actually make them.
  • InvalidError
    DavidMV said:
    Those converters likely require the same power management ICs that are causing the DDR5 shortage.
    They definitely would, can't make those 1.2-1.35V out of thin air and DDR5 DIMMs only get 3.3V for SPD and 12V for memory.

    By the time the PMIC gets smoothed out enough to make these boards for a reasonable price, it'll likely be cheaper to just get DDR5. Having 1" wiring stubs between the DIMM slot and DDR4 DIMM would most likely force people to run their DIMMs at sub-3GT/s for data integrity and +1/+2 command timing latency.
  • artk2219
    Not a fan of LGA, ive seen more people ruin sockets than ruin cpus since in the past those socket pins took less force to bend, and you're more likely to drop something ON the socket than to drop the cpu in a way that horribly mangles it. That being said, theres really not a way around it, 1700+ pins is alot of pins to have actually on the cpu, keep those socket covers on and try not to drop the cpu on the socket from now on hah.
  • cyrusfox
    So where is the advantage over Intel? I have read it twice and not picking up how AM5 is better than Intel. A lot of talk about mounting force but nothing to compare to Intel on.