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AMD Zen May Arrive In 2016, But Mass Availability Slated For 2017

AMD CEO Lisa Su responded to questions about the company’s upcoming Zen microprocessors during AMD’s quarterly earnings call. Although it appears some of the Zen CPUs will ship in Q4 2016, most people won’t have access to them until 2017.

According to Su, Zen will not ship in large quantities until 2017. AMD might ship some desktop Zen processors towards the end of 2016, but supplies will be limited until Q1 2017.

AMD technically makes it’s 2016 deadline by releasing limited quantities of Zen in Q4 2016, but it will be unattainable to most people until the company can ship the new processor in volume. Instead, system builders planning to construct a Zen PC will likely have to wait until Q1 2017.

“We have been very focused on the server launch for first half of 2017. Desktop should launch before that. In terms of true volume ability, I believe it will be in the first quarter of 2017. We may ship some limited volume towards the end of the fourth quarter, based on how bring up goes and the customer readiness,” said Lisa Su, AMD’s CEO. “But again, if I look overall at what we're trying to do, I think the desktop product is very well positioned for that high end desktop segment, that enthusiast segment in both channel and OEM, which is very much a segment that AMD knows well and so that's where we would focus on desktop. You should expect a notebook version of Zen, with integrated graphics in 2017, and that development is going on as well. And so, I think it's just a time of a lot of activity around the Zen and the different Zen product families,” said Su.

Zen processors will eventually stretch into both the server and mobile market segments closer to Q2 2017. AMD and some of its close business partners are already testing server variants of Zen, and the company expects to be able to deliver volume shipments of Zen server parts in Q2.

AMD also recently entered into a new licensing agreement with Tianjin Haiguang Advanced Technology Investment Co. Ltd. (THATIC), which is a joint venture that consists of AMD and both public and private Chinese companies. Some industry analysts are concerned about possible legal repercussions from Intel in regards to AMD licensing out x86-based designs.

Su was queried directly about the potentially thorny legal issues, to which she replied, "Yes, so relative to the server JV that we have with THATIC, as we stated before, we believe that our joint venture is operational. I think it's well underway. The technology that we're licensing is AMD technology, and so we don't have any issues relative to licensing. I think."

It remains to be seen when the THATIC consortium will begin producing Zen chips.

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  • The_Prince2017
    Any naming on the processors? Like FX XXXX?
    Reply
  • jp7189
    What kind of CEO fills an official statement with "should", "I believe", "I think"? That kind of uncertainty at the top will infect the whole company. It seems like Su has some serious doubts about her company's ability to execute.
    Reply
  • chicofehr
    i am hoping to upgrade my phenom II x6 to a 10+ core this decade with a non intel processor. my 3 monitor setup is boddlenecked by it
    Reply
  • SixtyFourK
    "What kind of CEO fills an official statement with "should", "I believe", "I think"? That kind of uncertainty at the top will infect the whole company. It seems like Su has some serious doubts about her company's ability to execute."

    If Lisa Su gives definite dates and then can't follow through then people will use that to spread fear that AMD can't deliver what they say. IMO Zen is going to get over hyped by fans but then that just leads to disappointment when it does come.
    Reply
  • elbert
    Kind of old info as now we know there will be 3 sockets. The 4 and 8 cores run at 2.8 with boost 3.2Ghz on AM4. A 8, 12, and 16 core on yet unnamed socket possibly backward compatible to AM4. The server gets sp3 socket with 24 cores at 2.7Ghz and 32 cores at 2.9Ghz.

    Possible an October launch of 65watt quad and 95watt octa core.
    Reply
  • ohim
    @SIXTYFOURK it`s already overhyped i think :)
    Reply
  • jaber2
    AMD is losing on both fronts to Nvidia and Intel
    Reply
  • MaCk0y
    18331118 said:
    "What kind of CEO fills an official statement with "should", "I believe", "I think"? That kind of uncertainty at the top will infect the whole company. It seems like Su has some serious doubts about her company's ability to execute."

    If Lisa Su gives definite dates and then can't follow through then people will use that to spread fear that AMD can't deliver what they say. IMO Zen is going to get over hyped by fans but then that just leads to disappointment when it does come.

    I agree about the release dates. No need to commit to a date but that 'I think' at the end is pretty awkward. You don't say 'I think' to something you have to be absolutely sure you are correct regarding licensing. Or else might get sued by Intel. Maybe she should have said 'We have our legal team working to make sure that everything is in accordancet' or something like that.

    Reply
  • George Phillips
    Make the true 8-core cpu in mainstream system and incorporate all the latest features. I am in AMD.
    Reply
  • none12345
    "Kind of old info as now we know there will be 3 sockets. The 4 and 8 cores run at 2.8 with boost 3.2Ghz on AM4. A 8, 12, and 16 core on yet unnamed socket possibly backward compatible to AM4. The server gets sp3 socket with 24 cores at 2.7Ghz and 32 cores at 2.9Ghz."

    The clock speed ive only seen mentioned for an A0 engineering sample, usually retail chips ship faster then A0 silicone.

    Id be suprised to see them ship at only 2.8ghz. (tho im sure some models will, i doubt the fastest will be close to that)
    Reply