Finally we have a new product to discuss after a long period of fruitlessness from AMD and NVIDIA in terms of new products. An article by Sweclockers revealed that AMD’s new mobile series (HD 8000M) will be codenamed “Solar System” and is rumored to arrive in early 2013, right in time for CES 2013.
The name “Solar System” comes as no surprise due to AMD naming multiple upcoming GPUs after celestial bodies (Venus, Mars, etc.) and this new lineup will come on the same 28nm processing as the HD 7000M series. It is not yet known if this new mobile lineup will feature the same GCN architecture, or if it will debut with the new GCN 2.0 architecture. It is recognized that the new mobile lineup will support DX 11.1, OpenGL 4.3 and OpenCL 1.2. This reuse of 28nm manufacturing in the 8000M Series comes at a time when AMD has revealed in an interview that the company may be sticking with exiting nodes (28nm) longer than “people think”.
According to XBitLabs AMD could be relying on 28nm fabrication as late as Q4 2014. This move is to keep cost down with production yields at a maximum using a proven manufacturing process and who can blame them for wanting such things? However the benefits of smaller nodes such as lower power consumption, less heat, better overclocking and a stronger foothold in the fast growing smartphone/tablet arena must also be considered.
The latest leaks suggest that AMD may schedule the series launch after Q1 2013. It is still unknown whether desktop units would receive the same naming, so Sea Islands are still in the game, for now. If you are interested in learning what the next series could bring to the current AMD line-up, make sure to check out our previous article where we make a quick analysis of the possible specs.