AMD’s Ryzen processors have finally given people an alternative to Intel when it comes to choosing a great CPU, but even the company itself admits (AMD says Ryzen was a "worst case scenario," Threadripper built by engineers in their spare time - TechSpot) there’s still room for improvement—the company said future generations of Ryzen chips will have better IPC (instructions per cycle), clockspeeds, and overclocking. Thanks to leaked slides on meopc.net, we now have confirmation that the first of these—the Ryzen 2000 Pinnacle Ridge desktop CPUs—are set to arrive in just over two months’ time.
We knew that the successor to the current Summit Ridge processors would launch in Q1 2018, but new leaks show the first next-gen Ryzen 7 chips shipping as soon as late February, while Ryzen 5 and 3 are set to launch in March.
The new chips are built on GlobalFoundries' 12nm process node, rather than the 14nm process used by Summit Ridge—essentially making Pinnacle Ridge AMD’s tick in the tick-tock model—and they use a refined Zen+ architecture. All of which means higher frequencies, power improvements, and (reportedly) support for higher DDR4 memory frequencies.
The introduction of the Ryzen 2000 chips will also see the launch of a new 400-series chipset, but compatibility with the existing AM4 socket remains. According to DigiTimes, X470- or B450-based motherboards will be the first of these to arrive in March. BIOS updates should ensure that 300 series motherboards are compatible with 2000 series Ryzen chips, but 400 series mobos will have the benefit of extra features, of course.
Low power and mobile versions of Pinnacle Ridge processors are expected to arrive around April, with 2nd generation Ryzen Pro parts set to launch in May.
Next year sees the launch of Zen 2 as AMD moves away from its Ridge naming system. Other than it also supporting Socket AM4, little else is known about Matisse.
2018 should be an interesting year for CPU fans. Not only will they have the choice of AMD’s new generation of Ryzen, but rival Intel will also be launching its 9th gen processors, which may be part of a Coffee Lake Refresh or even Ice Lake.