AMD starts shipping Bristol Ridge APUs
April 6, 2016 // 12:43 p.m.
AMD has announced that it is shipping its seventh generation of accelerated processing units (APUs), codenamed Bristol Ridge, ahead of schedule, with HP confirming that its Envy x360 convertible laptop will feature the parts.
Based on the same Excavator architecture as the sixth-generation Carrizo APUs but with further incremental updates and improvements, AMD is claiming that the new Bristol Ridge APUs offer improved performance: using the fifth-generation Kaveri parts as a baseline at 100 per cent performance, AMD claims the Carrizo family offers 140 per cent performance and Bristol Ridge 160 per cent as measured by the Cinebench R15 benchmark. Bigger news than an incremental performance hike, though, is support for DDR4 memory for the first time - bringing AMD's APUs into platform parity with rival Intel's latest Skylake parts.
Built on a 28nm process node, the Bristol Ridge parts will be made available in dual- and quad-core variants and Radeon R5 and R7 integrated graphics processors (IGPs) boasting eight or ten compute units. Sadly, while AMD is already shipping the first parts to its customers it is not yet sharing full specifications, nor has the company confirmed when retail boxes of individual Bristol Ridge APUs will begin appearing on shop shelves.
For AMD, the Bristol Ridge release marks the swansong of the Excavator architecture. Its next major release will be the Summit Ridge APU family, based on the new and much-hyped Zen microarchitecture.