Why it issues: After a gangbuster efficiency on the inventory marketplace for the final a number of years, AMD, CEO Dr. Lisa Su, and its govt management group have been below the glare of numerous media consideration not too long ago. Despite the obvious stress, nonetheless, the corporate retains popping out swinging and the bulletins from final week’s Financial Analyst Day point out that AMD is displaying no indicators of letting up.

In reality, the important thing takeaway from the occasion was that the corporate management—and apparently most of the monetary analysts who attended—now have much more confidence within the enterprise’ future. The firm was even keen to reiterate its steerage for the primary quarter, which, given the impression of the coronavirus on many its prospects and the tech trade as an entire, was an impressively optimistic assertion.

As a long-time firm observer, what notably stood out to me was that the corporate has now constructed up a several-year historical past of reaching some pretty grand plans primarily based on huge selections it made 4-5 years again. In the previous, earlier AMD management has additionally talked about huge concepts, however frankly, they weren’t in a position to ship on them. The key distinction with the present management group is that they’re now in a position to execute on these concepts. As a consequence, the credibility of their forward-looking plans has gone up considerably.

And what plans they’re. The firm made various essential bulletins about its future product methods and roadmaps on the occasion, most all of which have been focused round high-performance computing, each for CPUs and GPUs.

On the GPU roadmap, a very noteworthy growth was the introduction of a brand new datacenter-focused GPU structure named CDNA (“C” for Compute)—an apparent hyperlink to the RDNA structure at present used for PC and gaming-consoled targeted GPU designs. Full particulars round CDNA and particular Radeon Instinct GPUs primarily based on it are nonetheless to return, however the firm is clearly specializing in the machine studying, AI, and different datacenter-focused workloads that its main competitor Nvidia has been concentrating on for the final a number of years.

Opinion: AMD highlights path to the future

One key level the corporate made is that the second and third technology CDNA-based GPUs would leverage the corporate’s Infinity interconnect structure, permitting future CPUs and GPUs to share reminiscence in a really heterogenous computing atmosphere, in addition to offering a means for a number of GPU “chiplets” to attach with each other. The firm even talked about providing software program that may convert present CUDA code (which Nvidia makes use of for its knowledge heart GPUs) into platform-agnostic HIP code that may run on these new CDNA-based GPUs.

AMD additionally talked about plans for future consumer-focused GPUs and mentioned its next-generation RDNA2 expertise and Navi 2X chips, that are anticipated to supply hardware-accelerated assist for ray tracing, in addition to enhancements in variable price shading and general efficiency per watt.

Notably, the {hardware} ray tracing assist is anticipated to be a typical structure between each PCs and gaming consoles (each the PlayStation 5 and next-generation Xbox are primarily based on customized AMD GPU designs), in order that ought to be an essential development for sport builders. The firm additionally talked about RDNA3, which is anticipated within the 2020-2021 timeframe and shall be manufactured with what’s described as an “Advanced Node.” Presumably that shall be smaller than the 7nm manufacturing getting used for present RDNA-based GPUs and people primarily based on the forthcoming RDNA2 structure.

“It’s clear that AMD is here to stay. For the sake of the overall semiconductor market and the competitiveness that it will enable, that’s a good thing.”

Speaking of manufacturing, the corporate mentioned the way it intends to maneuver ahead aggressively, not solely on smaller dimension course of nodes, but in addition so as to add in 2.5 and 3D chip stacking (which it termed X3D). Over the previous yr or so, packaging applied sciences have taken on new ranges of significance for future semiconductor designs, so it will likely be fascinating to see what AMD does right here.

Opinion: AMD highlights path to the future

On the CPU aspect, the corporate laid out its roadmap for several new generations of its Zen core CPU architectures, together with a 7nm-based Zen three core anticipated within the subsequent yr or so, and the corporate’s first 5nm CPU, the Zen 4, deliberate for 2021 or 2022.

AMD made a degree to spotlight the forthcoming Ryzen Mobile 4000 sequence CPUs for notebooks, anticipated to be accessible later this month, which the corporate expects will increase them to the highest of the pocket book efficiency charts, simply because the Ryzen Zen 2-based CPUs did for desktops. The firm additionally talked about that its Third-generation Epyc server processor, codenamed Milan and primarily based on the forthcoming Zen three core, is anticipated to ship later this yr.

Opinion: AMD highlights path to the future

For even higher-performance computing, the mixture of Zen 4-based CPU cores, Third technology CDNA GPU cores and the Third technology Infinity interconnect structure within the late 2022 timeframe can also be what permits the exascale stage of computing powering AMD’s current El Capitan supercomputer announcement.

Built along with HPE on behalf of Lawrence Livermore Laboratory and the US Department of Energy, El Capitan is anticipated to be the quickest supercomputer on the planet when it’s launched and, amazingly, shall be extra highly effective than at present’s 200 quickest supercomputers mixed.

All advised, it was a really spectacular set of bulletins that highlights how AMD continues to construct on the momentum it began to create a couple of years again. Obviously, there are monumental questions on precisely the place the tech market is headed within the brief time period, however trying additional out, it’s clear that AMD is right here to remain. For the sake of the general semiconductor market and the competitiveness that it’ll allow, that’s a great factor.

Bob O’Donnell is the founder and chief analyst of TECHnalysis Research, LLC a expertise consulting and market analysis agency. You can observe him on Twitter @bobodtech. This article was initially revealed on Tech.pinions.