AMD's Ryzen V3000 goes head to head with Intel's embedded chips on power, oomph

House of Zen just needs to convince machine makers to use them

AMD put Intel’s low-power Xeon-D and industrial Core-series processors in its sights on Tuesday with the launch of its Ryzen Embedded V3000 CPUs.

The chips are designed for embedded appliances, with AMD specifically targeting datacenter storage and networking appliances.

AMD claims its chips are twice as fast as its V1000-series chips given expanded core counts and memory bandwidth. The chipmaker attributes much of the performance improvement to using its latest Zen 3 architecture, too. Of course, it's pitting these new chips against a five-year-old architecture — conveniently ignoring Ryzen V2000s.

AMD’s Ryzen Embedded processors have typically lagged behind its other mainstream desktop and datacenter chips architecturally by at least a generation. When AMD launched its V2000-series chips in 2020, they got the Zen 2 cores.

However, as we’ve seen with AMD’s notebook lineup, the company has no problem putting older cores in new processors. When the chipmaker refreshed its Embedded R2000 chips in June, it “upgraded” them to its now 4-year-old Zen+ architecture.

The initial V3000 lineup includes five processors with four, six, or eight cores. However, the main differentiator is their thermal design power, which ranges between 10W and 54W depending on the SKU. And like most embedded processors, they aren’t socketed. Instead, the ball-grid-array chips are permanently affixed to the motherboard — think single board computers, embedded devices, and so on.

All five chips support DDR5 ECC memory, up to 20 PCIe Gen 4 lanes, and dual 10Gbit/sec Ethernet, and can operate at temperatures up to 105C. However, unlike AMD’s V1000 or V2000 chips, its V3000-series doesn’t appear to offer onboard graphics in its initial lineup.

Here’s a full breakdown:

  • V3C48: 8 core / 16 threads, with base clock of 3.3GHz, a boost clock of 3.8GHz, a configurable TDP of 35-54W, and 20MB of total cache.
  • V3C44: 4 core / 8 threads, with a base clock of 3.5GHz, a boost clock of 3.8GHz, a configurable TDP of 35-54W, and 10MB of total cache.
  • V3C18I: 8 core / 16 threads, with a base clock of 1.9GHz, a boost clock of 3.8GHz, a configurable TDP of 10-25W, and 20MB of total cache.
  • V3C16: 6 core / 12 threads, with a base clock of 2GHz, a boost clock of 3.8GHz, a configurable TDP of 10-25W, and 19MB of total cache.
  • V3C14: 4 core / 8 threads, with a base clock of 2.3GHz, a boost clock of 3.8GHz, a configurable TDP of 10-25W, and 10MB of total cache.

While the core count, cache configuration, and TDPs invite comparison to AMD’s Ryzen mobile processors, they don’t quite line up with either the chipmaker’s 5000 or 6000-series parts.

AMD plans to offer the platform, which is now shipping to ODMs and OEMs, for “up to” 10 years.

Whether AMD’s V3000 chips will be enough to erode Intel’s longstanding foothold on the embedded and edge compute markets remains to be seen. As we discovered in June, despite AMD offering Ryzen and Epyc processors for embedded environments for several years now, the chips haven’t seen widespread adoption in mainstream OEM appliances. ®

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