AMD’s Ryzen Pro set to duke it out with Intel at the ultra-high end

AMD Ryzen 1600X centerturned
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

AMD is in the middle of rolling out some significant new advancements across its entire product line. Its Ryzen CPUs based on the new Zen architecture are challenging Intel’s best processors, and AMD’s Vega Frontier Edition GPUs are now available with even faster Radeon Vega consumer gaming GPUs coming later this year.

AMD hasn’t forgotten about the high-end commercial market , however, with its AMD Epyc family of server processors offering extremely powerful options for the data center. Now, AMD is following up on Epyc with its announcement of the new Ryzen Pro desktop chips aimed squarely at high-end workstations used for 3D rendering, intense video editing, and other intensive processes.

Ryzen Pro utilizes the Zen architecture to enhance its Ryzen line to meet the needs of enterprise-class applications and multitasking workflows. AMD is promising up to 52 percent better compute performance over AMD’s previous Piledriver architecture, while the Ryzen 7 Pro 1700 with Radeon R7 240 will outperform competing solutions like Intel’s Core i7-7700 with Intel HD Graphics 630 by up to 62 percent in the Cinebench benchmark.

The Ryzen Pro lineup will come in six configurations:

Product Line Model Cores Threads Boost Clock (GHz) Base Clock (GHz) TDP (Watts)
Ryzen 7 Pro 1700X 8 16 3.8 3.4 95
Ryzen 7 Pro 1700 8 16 3.7 3.0 65
Ryzen 5 Pro 1600 6 12 3.6 3.2 65
Ryzen 5 Pro 1500 4 8 3.7 3.5 65
Ryzen 3 Pro 1300 4 4 3.7 3.5 65
Ryzen 3 Pro 1200 4 4 3.4 3.1 65

According to AMD, each Ryzen Pro CPU will significantly outperform the relevant Intel alternative. The Ryzen 5 Pro 1600, for example, will be eight percent faster in PCMark10, 39 percent faster in Geekbench, and 92 percent faster in Cinebench R15 than the Intel Core i5-7500.

In addition, AMD is packing Ryzen Pro full of its most important features, aiming at providing the most manageable, reliable, robust, and secure platform available. AMD SenseMI will carry over from the consumer Ryzen line to provide its usual enhancements, including Precision Boost for precision tuning in 25MHz increments, Extended Frequency Range (XFR) support for automatic increase in processor clock speeds when system and processor cooling is sufficient, and Neural Net Prediction, Smart Prefetch, and Pure Power functionality.

Security is the major enhancement in Ryzen Pro aimed at the enterprise. All Ryzen Pro CPUs will benefit from the following AMD security technologies:

  • Transparent Secure Memory Encryption: DRAM encryption is provided independently of the OS and application without needing any software modification and with a low-performance impact.
  • Secure Boot Process: Industry Standard Secure Boot secures the system before threats can attack via Industry Standard Secure Boot BIOS protection.
  • Trusted Applications: fTPM enabled with TMP 2.0 support, this feature provides for secure storage and trusted applications processing with real-time intrusion detection.
  • Secure Production Environment: Hardware, firmware, BIOS, and configurations are tested and confirmed prior to shipment, with security starting on the assembly line at the moment of production.

AMD is also promising the highest level of reliability, with 18-month image stability, 24-month processor availability, commercial-grade, high-yield wafers, and industry-leading DASH manageability. Along with a Commercial Limited Warranty, the Ryzen Pro is certified for the enterprise.

Ryzen Pro will be available worldwide in the second half of 2017. AMD will be making Ryzen Pro mobile CPUs available in the first half of 2018.