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AMD Ryzen 7000 CPUs could arrive in September to steal Intel’s Raptor Lake thunder


If the current rumour proves to be right, AMD’s next-generation CPUs based on Zen 4 – presumably Ryzen 7000 units – might be available as early as September, according to the company. This comes from DigiTimes, which cites the typical anonymous industry sources, so keep your suspicious hat on at all times – the tech site’s rumor-mongering has a mixed track record when it comes to the authenticity of its claims.

Although this appears to be a remote possibility, the rumour mill has previously suggested that AMD will unveil Ryzen 7000 desktop processors at Computes, which will take place at the end of May, which would put the Zen 4 launch in the third quarter (a rumour which has been around before, too).

In other words, we could soon learn more about Team Red’s next-generation hardware, with the CPUs likely to give a significant performance boost, as they will be based on an entirely new architecture (Zen 4, constructed on TSMC 5nm), and will support DDR5 and PCIe 5.0.

According to reports, we may expect to see at least a glimpse of Ryzen 7000 performance, as well as some in-depth demos, at Computes, so we should have something to look forward to in just a couple of weeks.

Analysis: Racing with Raptor Lake

The release of Zen 4 CPUs is officially scheduled for H2 2022, which is a nebulous timetable that might include anything from July to December. However, there are a number of compelling reasons why AMD might prefer to see Ryzen 7000 CPUs available sooner rather than later in the second half of the year.

Indeed, this is a pivotal generation for AMD, as the company is currently playing catch-up with Intel, as Team Blue’s Alder Lake processors already support DDR5 and PCIe 5.0, and Team Red needs to get these features out there as soon as possible, if only to avoid the perception of not being at the forefront of technology alongside Intel (regardless of how much real-world impact those technologies have right now).

More importantly, because Alder Lake has been and gone, and Intel’s next-generation Raptor Lake processors are on the horizon and will provide a significant boost in performance, Ryzen 5000 chips are at risk of being out of date in the near future. And if the latter 13th-generation Core CPUs appear to be answered before the Ryzen 7000, that’s not a good sign for AMD’s future.

If various rumours are to be believed, Team Red will appear to be lagging behind (and, in fact, it may well be significantly lagging behind – depending on exactly how much more performance Raptor Lake can muster, but it could be an excellent upgrade for gamers, including the potential to hit a mind-boggling 5.8GHz with clock speeds).

Raptor Lake is expected to ship in the third quarter of 2022, and we’ve already mentioned that September 2022 may be the most likely launch date for Intel – so it seems reasonable that AMD would want to make sure that Ryzen 7000 is also available to compete with the 13th-generation hardware. Although Team Red would prefer to be the first company to release Zen 4 products, this may not be possible due to the fact that Zen 4 products must be available before Intel can.