AMD says 80 system designs (unofficially) using the PS5's hardware are inbound

mongeese

Posts: 515   +109
Staff member
In context: A few weeks ago, AMD quietly began selling the 4700S desktop kit, a little bag of hardware that’s believed to be based on the PlayStation 5's processor. CPU-Z recognizes the 4700S as a Ryzen processor, although AMD doesn’t officially market it that way. On AMD’s website, it’s listed as an 8-core, 16-thread chip based on the Zen 2 architecture.

The AMD 4700S kit comes embedded on a small motherboard, which can pack 8 GB or 16 GB of GDDR6 memory soldered onto it. A reviewer found it's designed to clock up to 3.2 GHz and the memory runs at 14 Gbps. The kit also comes with a cooler similar to AMD’s Wraith Stealth. Unfortunately, the motherboard is a bit of a bottleneck.

The sole PCIe x16 expansion slot has just four lanes of Gen2 bandwidth, limiting it to low-end GPUs. AMD recommends the RX 550 and lists the RX 590 and GTX 1060 as the most powerful cards supported by the kit.

Ariel, the PS5’s SoC, shares a driver and most of its specifications with the 4700S. It has the same eight cores, but slightly higher clock speeds. It’s similarly connected to 16 GB of GDDR6 memory. And, if it were to be connected to a discrete GPU, it would likewise have restricted bandwidth because it wasn’t designed to accommodate add-in cards.

When asked if the 4700S used rebranded or modified PS5 hardware, AMD told Tom’s Hardware that the "4700S Desktop Kit is its own unique solution, designed to address the desire for robust, high-core count performance in the mainstream market."

A leading theory is that defective Ariel chips are being recycled into 4700S chips. Presumably, there’s something wrong with Ariel’s integrated GPU inside the 4700S, or it can’t sustain the same clock speeds or is too thermally inefficient. Alternate theories suggest that the 4700S is a prototype of Ariel or a design made with a different integrated GPU in mind.

Whatever its heritage, the 4700S is here now. "We expect to see over 80 designs come to market from our SI partners beginning on June 24," AMD recently said. "Prices of these systems will be announced by our SI partners in due course." At the moment, 4700S kits and systems are only being sold in Asia, but AMD hasn’t indicated that that will be the permanent state of affairs.

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Dimitriid

Posts: 930   +1,717
I'm surprised they can manage 80 systems out of these: I am not sure what the market is. One could guess small enterprise clients for offices but those often *do* have integrated video so without graphics then it's just a worst option than those fancy thin clients that can also be had on reasonable prices mind you.

Gamers well no: those GPU options will be terrible due to bandwidth limitation unless the graphics can be turned on.

Dev boards? Well it's too big and again without video it's too unwieldy for those use cases.

This pretty much lives bottom-of-the-barrel cheap rigs: the kind of no-name companies that deliver a barely functional windows rig for people who don't know or can't afford better.

So my guess is that these should be *extremely* cheap to be of any kind of use to anyone because it would certainly be much nicer to have than the usual Pentiums, Celeros and Bulldozer era Athlons but can AMD flip these at such low prices?
 

fps4ever

Posts: 705   +937
I wonder if the motherboard is limiting it to just 4 PCIE lanes or the SOC is. If its the former then an OEM motherboard could offer a better version that could take advantage of an RX 590 or GTX 1060.
 

hahahanoobs

Posts: 3,600   +1,710
I'm surprised they can manage 80 systems out of these: I am not sure what the market is. One could guess small enterprise clients for offices but those often *do* have integrated video so without graphics then it's just a worst option than those fancy thin clients that can also be had on reasonable prices mind you.

Gamers well no: those GPU options will be terrible due to bandwidth limitation unless the graphics can be turned on.

Dev boards? Well it's too big and again without video it's too unwieldy for those use cases.

This pretty much lives bottom-of-the-barrel cheap rigs: the kind of no-name companies that deliver a barely functional windows rig for people who don't know or can't afford better.

So my guess is that these should be *extremely* cheap to be of any kind of use to anyone because it would certainly be much nicer to have than the usual Pentiums, Celeros and Bulldozer era Athlons but can AMD flip these at such low prices?
The top image on the AMD site shows a typical desktop computer with wireless kb/m, so I'm just as confused as you as to where these will end up.
 

hahahanoobs

Posts: 3,600   +1,710
I wonder if the motherboard is limiting it to just 4 PCIE lanes or the SOC is. If its the former then an OEM motherboard could offer a better version that could take advantage of an RX 590 or GTX 1060.
It's a Zen 2 CPU, so if it's anything like 400 series mobos, the chipset is PCIe 2, but I would assume they could at least get 4 PCIe 3 lanes from a CPU that does 20+4 in their retail part, but your guess is as good as mine.
 

Mr Majestyk

Posts: 815   +727
Pretty underwhelming hardware for the premium price the PS5 attracts. Will already need a refresh by 2023, given what we'll see with the 6000 series APUs alone.
 

Bobbydpue

Posts: 216   +145
How did "AMD told Tom’s Hardware that the "4700S Desktop Kit is its own unique solution, designed to address the desire for robust, high-core count performance in the mainstream market.""

become:

"AMD says 80 system designs (unofficially) using the PS5's hardware are inbound" There is very little evidence to support the theory any of these 80 systems are using hardware similar to PS5 hardware. When ask if was based on PS5 hardware AMD basically said "no" whether that's true or not is for another debate, but there just isn't enough evidence in this article to match the title.
 

jpuroila

Posts: 372   +223
I'm surprised they can manage 80 systems out of these: I am not sure what the market is. One could guess small enterprise clients for offices but those often *do* have integrated video so without graphics then it's just a worst option than those fancy thin clients that can also be had on reasonable prices mind you.

Gamers well no: those GPU options will be terrible due to bandwidth limitation unless the graphics can be turned on.

Dev boards? Well it's too big and again without video it's too unwieldy for those use cases.

This pretty much lives bottom-of-the-barrel cheap rigs: the kind of no-name companies that deliver a barely functional windows rig for people who don't know or can't afford better.

So my guess is that these should be *extremely* cheap to be of any kind of use to anyone because it would certainly be much nicer to have than the usual Pentiums, Celeros and Bulldozer era Athlons but can AMD flip these at such low prices?
8c/16t at 3.2 GHz is hardly the kind of CPU you can find in a bottom-of-the-barrel type of system. Rather, it could make a nice mid-range workstation with very good price/performance if you add something like GT 1010 on it and can deal with the inherent limitations of such a system.
 

Dimitriid

Posts: 930   +1,717
8c/16t at 3.2 GHz is hardly the kind of CPU you can find in a bottom-of-the-barrel type of system. Rather, it could make a nice mid-range workstation with very good price/performance if you add something like GT 1010 on it and can deal with the inherent limitations of such a system.
That class of chip can already be found on thin client PCs though and those have the advantage of being capable of significantly more compact designs due to having integrated graphics, we're talking 1 liter form factors here vs at least twice as much once you fit even a small, single slot, half height GPU

And that isn't the only advantage by the way: those enterprise thin clients still have pci-e capabilities so they can add stuff like 10gb Ethernet and other functionality.

These are inherently limited in ram, we haven't heard if they can handle something like ECC GDDR6 and are lacking several other things being a consumer line.

The point is not that the chip couldn't compete on other areas but the platform is the one that becomes extremely limiting and for very weird use cases.
 

msroadkill612

Posts: 94   +29
Its not clear to me how the generous 8-16GB of soldered gddr6 is used, but that is hardly low end bandwidth.

we can be sure that any amd development funds, will go to designs which have multiple tiered markets in multiple tiered versions.

This ensures a plan b/c/d/.... if markets fluctuate, & that there is absolutely minimal waste of low binned chips

This is some such desktop variant of repurposed consoles IMO - its what Lisa always does.
 

Alfatawi Mendel

Posts: 138   +221
That class of chip can already be found on thin client PCs though and those have the advantage of being capable of significantly more compact designs due to having integrated graphics, we're talking 1 liter form factors here vs at least twice as much once you fit even a small, single slot, half height GPU

And that isn't the only advantage by the way: those enterprise thin clients still have pci-e capabilities so they can add stuff like 10gb Ethernet and other functionality.

These are inherently limited in ram, we haven't heard if they can handle something like ECC GDDR6 and are lacking several other things being a consumer line.

The point is not that the chip couldn't compete on other areas but the platform is the one that becomes extremely limiting and for very weird use cases.
Oh I dunno. An 8-core 16-thread chip that only needs a low-end graphics solution, would make a quite tasty productivity machine. Provided it was priced low enough. Dog knows, Intel sells plenty of them.
 

Wereweeb

Posts: 61   +126
It's weird that they didn't even left a small portion of the iGPU enabled. I doubt they wouldn't be able to run them at least as fast as an RX 550. Then the PCIe could be used for other things.

Also, where does the storage go? USB ports?
 

Vanderlinde

Posts: 46   +37
Ofcourse it's PS5/Xbox SOC's. They are not wasting any (good) silicon really. The GPU is proberly laser cut off. If people where to debug or hotwire things back together there's a fair chance you'll get exactly PS5 specs running.

So far I understood it's basicly AMD tech with their own sauce (Xbox/Sony) on top of the chip in a firmware. That is really all there is to it. And yes the chips are ryzen.
 
It's weird that they didn't even left a small portion of the iGPU enabled. I doubt they wouldn't be able to run them at least as fast as an RX 550. Then the PCIe could be used for other things.

Also, where does the storage go? USB ports?
SATA 1 port is top right edge of the board when viewed from above next to the external USB ports header, (writing is upside down).
 

Bobbydpue

Posts: 216   +145
Ofcourse it's PS5/Xbox SOC's. They are not wasting any (good) silicon really. The GPU is proberly laser cut off. If people where to debug or hotwire things back together there's a fair chance you'll get exactly PS5 specs running.

So far I understood it's basicly AMD tech with their own sauce (Xbox/Sony) on top of the chip in a firmware. That is really all there is to it. And yes the chips are ryzen.
There is no objective evidence to support these SOC's being based specifically on their console hardware. There was no actual evidence presented. I'm not convinced.