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  • Kyle Chua

AMD Unveils Ryzen Z1 Series for Handheld PC Gaming Consoles

Updated: Dec 19, 2023

AMD continues to expand its product lineup as the gaming industry moves toward handheld devices.

Credit: AMD

The American semiconductor giant on Wednesday, 3 May unveiled the new Ryzen Z1 series of processors, designed for high-performance handheld PC gaming consoles. The series consists of two processors, the Ryzen Z1 and Ryzen Z1 Extreme, both of which, as the company touts, deliver on the performance and battery fronts alike.

The Ryzen Z1 features 6 cores and 12 threads, while the Ryzen Z1 Extreme features 8 cores and 16 threads. The two processors leverage the "Zen 4" architecture to maximise battery life without compromising gaming performance.

Both processors will be equipped with the company's RDNA 3 architecture-based graphics that's going to be capable of supporting graphically intensive modern games and running them smoothly. The Ryzen Z1 will feature 4 RDNA 3 compute units with 22MB of cache while the Risen Z1 Extreme will feature 12 RDNA 3 compute units with 24MB of cache.

Users can further boost gaming performance by taking advantage of AMD Software: Adrenalin Edition which include features like AMD Radeon Super Resolution, Radeon Chill, Radeon Image Sharpening and AMD Link. These features can potentially boost frame rates to a great degree and increase responsiveness of games while also helping extend battery life.

What's more, the processors also support USB4 ports, bringing the latest connectivity options for external storage and display devices, along with the latest LPDDR5 and LPDDR5X memory standards. Both are also built on x86 architecture and ready for Windows 11, giving users instant access to Microsoft's suite of apps, including the hundreds of PC games available on Xbox Game Pass.

Credit: AMD

"At AMD, we’re continually advancing the next generation of gaming experiences, from consoles to desktops to on-the-go handheld devices,” said Jason Banta, Corporate Vice President and General Manager, Client OEM at AMD. "Ryzen Z1 processors deliver gamers an elite gaming experience and extreme portability in exciting gaming form factors."

The Ryzen Z1 series will be available first in the yet-to-be-released Asus ROG Ally, a PC handheld gaming console that many believe can compete with Valve's Steam Deck. For comparisons, the Steam Deck runs on a custom AMD Zen 2 "Van Gogh" APU with 4 cores and 8 threads as well as 8 RDNA 2 compute units. That means ROG Ally, on paper, should have a substantial edge over the Steam Deck in terms of gaming performance.

The ROG Ally was first revealed last month, but pricing and availability will only be announced on 11 May.

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