AMD says Zen 4 "Raphael" will be a boon for DDR5 overclocking enthusiasts

nanoguy

Posts: 1,239   +24
Staff member
Why it matters: It's still early days in terms of DDR5 adoption in the consumer desktop space, but AMD says exciting things are in the pipeline for people looking to jump on the latest memory technology train. The company is likely referring to a robust system for DDR5 memory overclocking, but we'll have to wait and see.

AMD is planning to launch its Zen 4 CPUs sometime in the second half of this year, and the hype-building process began with a few hints thrown at CES 2022. At the time, the company revealed it would use a new socket with an LGA layout and the same SecuFirm2 cooler mounting system as the AM4 socket. It also hinted at a significant generational leap in performance and a different heatspreader design, but that's pretty much all the official info we got with the roadmap announcement.

With the move to AM5, AMD will also embrace DDR5 memory, which is still in the early days of its existence on the consumer desktop market and with plenty of untapped potential. The company is a late arrival to this game, with Intel having already shipped Alder Lake on desktop and mobile platforms with support for the new memory technology before AMD shipped its Rembrandt laptop CPUs, but things could get more exciting pretty soon.

During a Meet the Experts webinar, AMD Memory Enabling Manager Joseph Tao spilled some beans on the company's upcoming "Raphael" platform. Tao noted something we've already known for a while— that the first generation of DDR5 memory isn't a significant upgrade to existing high-end DDR4 memory, and it's especially not a good deal considering the current prices of DDR5 kits.

Our own Steven Walton looked at memory scaling with Intel's 12th-gen Alder Lake CPUs and found that while DDR5 can yield some improvements with certain games that aren't sensitive to the higher latency, you're more likely to be GPU limited in most gaming scenarios.

Tao explained that "our first DDR5 platform for gaming is our Raphael platform, and one of the awesome things about Raphael is that we are really gonna try to make a big splash with overclocking and I'll just kinda leave it there — but speeds that you maybe thought couldn't be possible may be possible with this overclocking spec."

After implementing support for Smart Access Memory, it looks like AMD's next area of focus is on squeezing the most out of DDR5 tech. That may have something to do with a little something called Ryzen Accelerated Memory Profile (RAMP), which is believed to be the replacement for A-XMP and similar to Intel's XMP 3.0 for DDR5 memory.

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ypsylon

Posts: 523   +543
This is where AMD will have a chance to cash-in on their architecture.

Historically Intel CPU design or infrastructure around it never really cared about memory speed. Within same family of RAM it was basically meaningless (excluding labs and specialized applications like particle physics) if you used DDR4 2666, 3200, 4400 or even ran at JEDEC nominal 2133.

AMD's Zen has proved that it benefits a lot from faster memory. Now that DDR4 is out and DDR5 is in we can witness really serious uplift in performance coming just with memory frequency bump. I'm quite curious how IMC will handle future memory modules. First generation of new RAM is always on par with last of old, but if we dive into sticks with double or triple of current paltry ~5000 MHz, Zen could really show some hidden - so far - claws.

Assuming we'll still have a planet to live on by the end of this year, it'll be quite exciting to see.
 

DZillaXx

Posts: 533   +681
This is where AMD will have a chance to cash-in on their architecture.

Historically Intel CPU design or infrastructure around it never really cared about memory speed. Within same family of RAM it was basically meaningless (excluding labs and specialized applications like particle physics) if you used DDR4 2666, 3200, 4400 or even ran at JEDEC nominal 2133.

AMD's Zen has proved that it benefits a lot from faster memory. Now that DDR4 is out and DDR5 is in we can witness really serious uplift in performance coming just with memory frequency bump. I'm quite curious how IMC will handle future memory modules. First generation of new RAM is always on par with last of old, but if we dive into sticks with double or triple of current paltry ~5000 MHz, Zen could really show some hidden - so far - claws.

Assuming we'll still have a planet to live on by the end of this year, it'll be quite exciting to see.

That is not true. DDR/2/3/4 on intel chips all showed notable improvements when it came to gaming when using high speed low latency memory. Most notably in regards to min frame rate and better frame times.

I've always used high performance memory for this reason. Games play notably better and smoother.

The only thing is if it is worth the extra cost. Some don't think it is.
 

HardReset

Posts: 1,685   +1,342
Given how expensive DDR5 is, I'm sure we will see DDR4 still with AM5?
Perhaps that's why AMD postponed AM5 launch. AMD could have launched Zen4 (not Epyc) around this time but since DDR5 prices are ultra high, I see no real reason for that. AMD could also put DDR4 memory controller into AM5 CPUs but that would cause some confusion that AMD probably wants to avoid.
 

toooooot

Posts: 1,567   +788
Ddr5 is not that expensive. I ve noticed tha tthe most popular sets sell 32gb. And the most poipular price is 300-400.
150 for 16gb ddr5 is more, but it is not too expensive.
Things that would make me upgrade to next ddr right now:
1. huge overclocking ability
2. ultra low power requirement,
3 great increase in clocks and a drop in timings
4 ddr that the system can handle better--faster, I think that refers to throughput, but not sure iregarding discribing it accurately.