AMD has been firing on all cylinders with its Zen family of products, which first came to market in early 2017. Since that time, the processors have grown to cover mobile, desktop and server sectors, with the most recent microarchitecture iteration being 7nm Zen 2 (found currently in Ryzen 3000 desktop processors and EPYC 7002 server processors).
But AMD isn't done yet; at the HPE Cast 2019 conference held last week, the company laid out its plans for the future of Zen -- specifically with regards to its EPYC server processors. We already knew that Milan, the successor to 7nm Rome, would be built on an enhanced 7nm+ node, but AMD is now giving us some early insight on performance-per-watt characteristics
AMD is showing that its currently shipping 7nm Rome processors are outpacing Intel's long-in-the-tooth 14nm++ node used in its Xeon processors, which is to be expected. However, even when AMD shifts to 7nm+ Naples EPYC processors and Intel moves down to its 10nm node, the company is still expecting to surpass those new Xeon processors by a similar margin with regards to performance-per-watt according to slides obtained by WCCFTech.
Zen 3 is expected to have a similar architectural relationship to Zen 2 as Zen+ had to Zen. In other words, don't expect any drastic changes to the design of the chip, as AMD instead focuses on increasing performance and further driving efficiency. As we reported last week, Zen 3 is currently "design complete" and if all goes according to schedule, we should see the first processors based around this design around mid-2020.
Further down the road is Zen 4, codenamed Genoa for EPYC processors, which is currently "in design". These chips are said to be built on TSMC's 5nm process technology.
Intel of course isn’t sitting idly by as AMD stocks up ammunition in the server war, and is preparing its own counterassault. Intel will reportedly launch Cooper Lake-SP (14nm++) Xeon processors during the first half of 2020 that will be available in up to 48-core configurations. During the latter half of 2020, we should see the arrival of Ice Lake-SP (10nm+) in up to 26-core configurations. It's also said that the Ice Lake-SP platform will adopt PCIe 4.0, which the EPYC 7002 platform adopted when it launched two months ago.