In what has to be one of the world’s worst-kept secret AMD finally pulled back the curtain on the latest members of the company's formidable mobile line. The company just announced the AMD Ryzen 9 4900H and 4900HS, both designed to deliver serious performance for gamers and content creators. These heavy hitters are expected to start appearing in some of your favorite laptops starting in Spring 2020.
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We got an early preview of some of that performance in an early demo. We also saw several new features designed to make AMD's return to mobile as power-efficient and stunning as possible.
The 9th level
Taking on Intel is a tall order, but it looks like AMD is up to the challenge. The company is rolling out two distinct classes of CPUs. Similar to Intel's Core i9 chips, Ryzen 9 APUs sit at the top of the heap of performance. Both chips with feature 8 cores with 16 threads. On the graphics front, you get an optimized version of 7nm Radeon Vega integrated graphics cores for both APUs.
The biggest difference you'll see between the two chips is wattage and clock speeds. The 35W 4900HS offers a 3-GHz clock speed that can be pushed to 4.3 GHz. Meanwhile, the 45W 4900H has a 3.3 GHz base with a boost up to 4.4 GHz. We're excited to see these chips in the likes of the upcoming Asus ROG Zephyrus G14.
But what does all this mean exactly? Depending on the benchmark, it means that Intel may have met its match. In its own testing AMD claims that the 4900HS processor delivers 38% better performance than the Intel Core i9-9880H on the Cinebench R20 nT benchmark and 28% better on the 3DMark TimeSpy test.
Paired up with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2060 GPU, the H-class chips can reach 60 frames per second on a number of AAA games including Hitman. While AMD's numbers are impressive, I'm eager to see how these systems will hold up against Laptop Mag's battery of tests.
But playing a buttery-smooth run of Borderlands 3 during a demo of the Zephyrus G14 made a great impression. Even though, I was fighting through a thick wave of enemies, I never saw any slowdown or latency, just big explosions against colorful vistas.
Taking what it learned from the collaboration with Intel on its Kaby Lake chips, AMD is launching SmartShift. Available for H-class chips, SmartShift uses artificial intelligence to monitor user workload and divvy out more power to the GPU or CPU if neither is being overworked. The result, according to AMD is a notable boost in performance, noting a 10% bump.
AMD is making a big push for the mobile space with the launch of the the Ryzen 9 APUs. The new chips round out an an already robust offering of chips that spans budget and use case ensuring that there's something for everyone. If AMD's performance can live up to the hype, there might be a new king of mobile CPUs.
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Sherri L. Smith has been cranking out product reviews for Laptopmag.com since 2011. In that time, she's reviewed more than her share of laptops, tablets, smartphones and everything in between. The resident gamer and audio junkie, Sherri was previously a managing editor for Black Web 2.0 and contributed to BET.Com and Popgadget.