Ryzen Roundup: A Quick Overview of Ryzen Mobile 4000 Laptops From Acer, ASUS, Dell, & MSIby Anton Shilov on March 31, 2020 4:45 PM EST
Originally announced back at CES 2020, AMD this week has finally launched its new "Renoir" Ryzen Mobile 4000 APUs. And with it, AMD's laptop partners have begun rolling out their first wave of Ryzen 4000 laptops.
While we're still working on our full review for next Monday, we wanted to take a moment to take stock of the laptop market thus far, and look at the Ryzen Mobile 4000 laptops that have been released this week or are due in the coming weeks. So far, Acer, ASUS, Dell, and MSI have introduced their notebooks, and between the four OEMs, they're aiming for a wide range of the consumer market.
Acer’s Swift 3 and Aspire 5 Laptops Introduced
Acer was among the first to introduce its AMD Ryzen Mobile 4000-based laptops earlier this year, and this month, Acer finally started sales of its new notebooks, which are available in 14 and 15-inches.
The Acer Swift 3 (SF314-42) is a 14-inch ultraportable laptop that weighs 1.17 kilograms and runs (up to) AMD’s eight-core AMD Ryzen 7 4700U APU that is paired with 8 GB of LPDDR4 memory as well as an SSD. The PC has everything that one comes to expect from a 2020 ultrathin notebook, including Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi 6, USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports, and a fingerprint scanner.
The laptop comes with an IPS Full-HD display panel with thin bezels, so it is pretty portable. Since the Swift 3 is designed primarily with roadwarriors in mind, it can work for 11.5 hours on one charge, according to the manufacturer. The Swift 3 SF314-42 will be available this April at a price starting at $629.99
Acer’s Aspire 5 (A515-44) is aimed at those looking for something bigger and less portable. This machine is equipped with a Full-HD IPS 15.6-inch LCD and uses AMD’s six-core Ryzen 5 4500U mobile CPU that is accompanied by up to 24 GB of RAM, up to 1 TB PCIe SSD, and a 2 TB hard drive. This system will hit the market in June at an MSRP starting at $519.99.
ASUS’s ROG Zephyrus G14: An Ultimate Gaming Laptop
Among gaming notebook vendors, ASUS was the first company to start using AMD’s desktop Ryzen CPUs with eight cores inside its ROG laptop. So it is not surprising that the company is also among the first with its high-end ROG Zephyrus G14 notebook powered by AMD’s Ryzen 9 4900HS and Ryzen 7 4800HS mobile APUs.
The eight-core Ryzen Mobile 4000-series processor works together with up to 32 GB of DDR4-3200 RAM, an up to 1 TB M.2 NVMe SSD, and NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 2060 or GTX 1660 Ti discrete graphics processor. The powerful guts are accompanied by rather decent connectivity technologies, including Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0, USB 3.1 Gen 1/2 Type-A/Type-C ports, and a DisplayPort 1.4 output.
The ASUS ROG Zephyrus G14 is obviously meant for gamers on the go, and so ASUS has set out to strike a balance between performance and portability. As the name suggests, the laptop comes with a 14-inch display featuring a 2560x1440 or 1920x1080 resolution as well as a 60 Hz or 120 Hz refresh rate with VESA Adaptive-Sync on top. Interestingly, select SKUs even come with Pantone Validated LCDs to appeal to those who want to do color-critical workloads on their Republic of Gamers laptop. The machine weighs 1.7 kilograms and is 1.79 cm – 1.99 cm thick depending on the version.
ASUS’s TUF Gaming A15: Ryzen Mobile Gaming in Budget
The ROG Zephyrus G14 is not ASUS’s only AMD Ryzen Mobile 4000-series-based notebook aimed at gamers and performance-demanding enthusiasts. The company also has lower-tier TUF Gaming A15 machine, which also brings decent specifications and performance.
The ASUS TUF Gaming A15 is based on AMD’s Ryzen 7 4800H and Ryzen 5 4600H processors that are paired with NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 2060 or GTX 1660 Ti discrete GPUs, up to 32 GB of DDR4-3200 memory, an SSD up to 1 TB in capacity, and a 1 TB 5400 RPM HDD. On the I/O side of things, the laptop has Wi-Fi 5, USB 3.2 Gen 1/2 Type-A/Type-C, a GbE port, and an HDMI output.
As per its name, the TUF Gaming A15 is equipped with a 15.6-inch Full-HD IPS panel with a 60 Hz or a 144 Hz refresh rate that is supported by VESA’s Adaptive-Sync technology.
One interesting thing to note about the TUF Gaming A15 laptops is that in addition to being ruggedized, these machines will be available in two different finishes: one Fortress Gray looks minimalistic, whereas another — Bonfire Black — looks futuristic.
The ASUS TUF Gaming A15 is already available from retailers like Amazon starting at prices of $999.99.
Dell’s G5 15 Special Edition Ryzen: An AMD-Only Gaming Laptop
Dell introduced its G5 15 SE gaming laptop ahead of all of its rivals back at CES 2020. What is, perhaps, more important is that this machine uses key components only from AMD, so along with a Ryzen 4000 APU it also comes with AMD’s Radeon RX 5600M discrete GPU (Navi architecture). The notebook is currently the only PC that supports AMD’s SmartShift technology that dynamically shift power and thermal headroom between the CPU and the GPU to maximize performance.
The 15.6-inch G5 15 Special Edition Ryzen gaming notebook is equipped with a Full-HD panel with a 144Hz maximum refresh rate as well as variable refresh support. Meanwhile, the system comes with DDR4 DRAM, a SSD up to 1TB in size, and a 2 TB 5400 RPM HDD. As far as I/O is concerned, the mobile PC features Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GbE, USB-A, USB-C, mDP, HDMI, SD card reader, a 3.5-mm audio jack, and a webcam with IR sensors.
Dell’s G5 15 Special Edition Ryzen yet has to make it to the market, but back in January it was said that the notebook is due in early April. As for pricing, it is expected that the machine will cost starting at $799.
MSI’s Bravo 15: A Budget Gaming Laptop
MSI is a yet another company that uses AMD’s latest six-core Ryzen 5 4600H and eight-core Ryzen 7 4800H APUs paired with the company’s latest Radeon RX 5500M discrete GPU. Though it is unclear whether the latest Bravo 15 notebook actually supports SmartShift technology.
MSI’s Bravo 15 laptops that are currently available for pre-order are equipped with 16 GB of DDR4 memory as well as a 512 GB NVMe SSD, which is in line with what we expect from sub-$1000 gaming notebooks. Meanwhile, the systems are equipped with a 15.6-inch Full-HD IPS LCD panel featuring a variable refresh rate of up to 120 Hz with VESA’s Adaptive-Sync on top.
So far, PC makers have introduced several higher-end midrange gaming laptops based on AMD’s Ryzen Mobile 4000 processors. And given AMD's ongoing success with the similar Zen 2-based Ryzen 3000 CPUs on the desktop, the company is certainly putting its best foot forward for the mobile space as well. So as supplies ramp up (and Coronavirus ramps down) expect more computer manufacturers introduce Ryzen 4000 notebooks in the coming months.
Traditionally, AMD has done well with gamers, so it is likely that at some point we are going to see true desktop replacement notebooks featuring the company’s latest processors paired with top-of-the-range GPUs. Meanwhile, what remains to be seen is how successful will AMD be with ultraportables, which is a traditional Intel stronghold. To date, only Acer has unveiled an ultrathin Ryzen 4000 notebook, and companies like Lenovo should catch up shortly.
- AMD Details Renoir: The Ryzen Mobile 4000 Series 7nm APU Uncovered
- AMD Ryzen 4000 Mobile APUs: 7nm, 8-core on both 15W and 45W, Coming Q1
- CES 2020: Dell’s G5 15 SE Gaming Laptop Gets 8-Core Ryzen 4000 & Radeon RX 5600M dGPU
- Acer Swift 3, either with Core i7-1065G7 or Ryzen 7 4700U: The Laptop Market Just Blew Wide Open
Sources: AMD, Acer, ASUS, Dell, MSI