AMD Introduces Its Fastest PRO A-Series APUs Yet – Coming To Business Laptops And Desktops

Khalid Moammer
Posted Sep 30, 2015
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AMD is officially introducing its next generation line of PRO A-Series APUs designed for business notebook and desktop computers. This is AMD’s latest set of business oriented commercial processors following the initial introduction of the first business focused APUs last year.

AMD Pro A-Series APUs - Slide11
The new line-up consists of AMD’s next generation mobility Accelerated Processing Units codenamed “Carrizo” as well as AMD’s latest desktop APUs code named “Godavari”.
These new PRO A-Series APUs are based on the same silicon as the consumer A-Series APUs, however the PRO series is endowed with a set of business specific features for improved productivity, security and long-term reliability.

“The innovative architecture of new AMD PRO processors delivers compelling performance to stay ahead of the evolving demands of business today,” said Jim Anderson, senior vice president and general manager, computing and graphics, AMD. “Going PRO with AMD means unmatched dependability with platform stability, processor longevity and an opportunity for richer system configurations. AMD gives its customers choice and affordability to meet specific business needs, without compromising the ability to manage and maintain a secure, stable, and reliable environment.”

AMD PRO A-Series Carrizo Mobile Processors

The introduction of Carrizo based PRO A-Series APUs brings all the features of AMD’s latest APU design based on the “Excavator” CPU core and the latest GCN 1.2 graphics architecture. With Carrizo AMD managed to double the battery life compared to its previous generation 7000 series “Kaveri” based APUs.

AMD also managed to significantly improve ecurity with the integration of a dedicated security processor dubbed the AMD Secure Processor bringing ARM TrustZone to AMD’s Carrizo based consumer and commercial processors. Carrizo also features significant CPU and graphics performance improvements achieved through a number of updates to the CPU and GPU microarchitectures as well as higher CPU and GPU clock speeds.

In AMD’s announcement, the company made specific mention of a brand new PRO A12 APU which is the most powerful PRO APU the company has debuted yet. The A12 APU features 4 Excavator CPU cores as well as 8 GCN 1.2 – Graphics Core Next – compute units for a total of 12 compute clusters/cores.

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AMD -Slide12-30Aug2015

Key features of the new AMD PRO mobile processor include:

  • First commercial processor in the industry designed to be compliant with the Heterogeneous Systems Architecture (HSA) 1.0 specification to make programming accelerators such as the GPU far simpler, leading to greater application performance at low power consumption.
  • First ARM® TrustZone® capable commercial performance APU with a dedicated AMD Secure Processor. ARM® TrustZone® runs on top of the hardware enabling sensitive tasks to run on the AMD Secure Processor — in the “secure world” — while other tasks are run in “standard operation.”
  • First commercial performance APU with a true System-on-Chip (SoC) design to provide substantial gains in CPU, graphics and multimedia performance.
  • First commercial processor with High-Efficiency Video Compression (HEVC) 1 decoder capability for mainstream notebooks to stream HD and Ultra HD content.

“As the industry embraces changes to the workforce, work styles and workplaces, AMD is a critical technology partner for us in developing solutions that can power the modern business,” said Alex Cho, vice president and general manager, commercial PCs, printing and personal systems group, HP. “AMD PRO on HP devices gives customers a new commercial-grade processor with the performance to support the changing needs of their business, and we are excited to exclusively offer this processor on our newest line of Elite PCs.”

ModelAMD Pro
A12-8800B
AMD Pro
A10-8700B
AMD Pro
A8-8600B
AMD PRO
A6-8500B
GraphicsAMD Radeon R7 GraphicsAMD Radeon R6 GraphicsAMD Radeon R6 GraphicsAMD Radeon R5 Graphics
TDPConfigurable 12-35WConfigurable 12-35WConfigurable 12-35WConfigurable 12-15W
CPU Cores4442
Compute Cores12 (4 CPU + 8 GPU)10 (4 CPU + 6 GPU)10 (4 CPU + 6 GPU)6 (2 CPU + 4 GPU)
CPU ClockUp to 3.4 GHzUp to 3.2 GHzUp to 3.0 GHzUp to 3.0 GHz
GPU Clock800 MHz800 MHz720 MHz800 MHz
L2 Cache2 MB2 MB2 MB1 MB
DDR3 SupportDDR3- 2133 MHzDDR3- 2133 MHzDDR3- 2133 MHzDDR3- 1600 MHz

AMD PRO A-Series Godavari Desktop Processors

On the desktop side AMD announced the introduction of brand new PRO A-Series “Goadavari” APUs that are compatible with the established FM2+ motherboard socket, allowing for easy drop-in replacements for previous generation FM2+ APUs. “Godavari” APUs feature improved CPU and graphics performance over previous generation “Kaveri” Accelerated Processing Units, achieved primarily through higher CPU and GPU clock speeds while maintaining the same TDP – Thermal Design Power – figures of the previous generation “Kaveri” APUs.

These desktop PRO series processors have been made available on a range of PC towers including the Lenovo M79 Tower, HP EliteDesk 705 Micro Tower as well as a number of small form factor offerings from the previously mentioned OEMs.

“Delivering a no-compromise IT deployment experience has always been a top priority for us at Lenovo,” said Jun Ouyang, vice president and general manager, desktop & visuals business unit, Lenovo. “By collaborating with AMD, our built-with-purpose ThinkCentre desktops are better equipped to deliver great value without sacrificing performance or manageability.”

AMD PRO Control Center

Along with the announcement of the new business oriented hardware, AMD has also announced the introduction of a novel piece of software. Dubbed the AMD PRO Control Center this little system management application enables users to do a number of cool things.

AMD-Slide14-30Aug2015
A few examples of what can be done with this tool include setting up machine start-up and shutdown schedules for every day of the week to conserve power. As well as scheduling periodic harddrive defragmentation to maintain system performance and schedule automatic back-ups to mitigate data loss. The tool also includes a variety of other performance and security oriented features which you’ll find detailed in the video below.

Finally, in many ways the announcement of Carrizo based PRO A-Series APUs signifies the genuine beginning of Carrizo’s introduction to the market. The commercial space is really the ideal market for APUs and with a wide and cohesive feature set such as that delivered with Carrizo, it’s bound to prove to be a very attractive infrastructure investment for a wide array of businesses.

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