Intel's human shield from monopoly watchdogs AMD has quietly revealed some processor packages for business PCs.
These AMD Pro A-series system-on-chips use the Carrizo design we pored over earlier this year. Carrizo is targeted at notebooks for normal folks, whereas the AMD Pro A-series is going into Windows 10 corporate desktops and laptops, we're told.
The Carrizo heart that beats in each of the A-series family's chips provides HSA 1.0 support, Radeon graphics, and an ARM-compatible core with TrustZone support so it can run code independent of the SoC's 64-bit x86 Excavator cores. TrustZone can be useful for running software that makes sure the main system boots a legit copy of the operating system that hasn't been nobbled by malware, for example.
The 28nm AMD Pro A12, which is at the top end of the A-series for notebooks, has four x86 cores that can clock up to 3.4GHz, eight Radeon R7 cores that clock up to 800MHz, 2MB of L2 cache, and HEVC decoding in hardware. You can hook it up to DDR3 2133MHz RAM, and its TDP is 12W to 35W.
That pretty much matches the Carrizo FX-8800P mobile part from earlier this year; the difference between Carrizo-for-normal-people and A-series-for-business-people is not clear.
No one at AMD was available to explain the distinction between the components before the chip biz went somewhat public with its new parts on Tuesday, which is odd because you'd think the company would be gasping for any publicity it can get.
California-based AMD says HP is today selling EliteBooks and desktop machines with the new chips inside, and Lenovo is flogging PCs with the silicon inside, too. ®