Zen 4 and the RTX 40 and RX 7000 are obsolete: TSMC N4P arrives

TSMC-N4P

The world’s largest foundry or chip manufacturing facility, Taiwan Semiconductors, is seeing its dominance threatened by Intel’s announcement of eager to compete with the Asian foundry and Samsung’s new nodes. So TSMC has developed N4P, a brand new manufacturing node to be able to entice extra and extra new processor designs.

There is little doubt that there’s a particular race between the three massive foundries the place new manufacturing nodes are created for future chips, the purpose is to get the nice designers in the completely different segments of the {hardware} market to design their future merchandise in these new processes. This market is so essential that it has additionally turn into a strategic marketplace for manufacturing international locations and right now Taiwan with its foundry TSMC has turn into the market chief after the mishaps of Intel with its 10 nm node, now renamed Intel 7, however in a extremely aggressive and short-time market there is no such thing as a pause.

TSMC presents its N4P node

The Taiwanese foundry has simply launched a brand new chip manufacturing node in its portfolio. Under the identify of N4P TSMC has simply introduced a producing node that may share area with nodes N5, N4 and N3 of the similar foundry. its a couple of course of compliant with node N5 design guidelines, and subsequently it is going to be ready for use to fabricate the similar processor designs.

The N4P node is subsequently a intermediate node, which is itself an improved model of the N4. CPUs and GPUs manufactured underneath this node may have a 11% enchancment in clock velocity in comparison with the similar half manufactured underneath node N5 and 6% in comparison with N4. At the similar clock velocity and in comparison with N5 the new N4P node a similar c chipwill devour as much as 22% much less and all this occupying a 6% much less area. They have additionally talked about enhancements in the manufacturing course of, and these are available in a discount in the variety of masks, which can velocity up manufacturing time and subsequently

The launch date of the new node? TSMC expects N4P to begin manufacturing in the second half of 2022, so it’ll serve to launch extra power environment friendly variations of the designs for TSMC’s 5nm node. Given the excessive deployment prices of a brand new chipmaking know-how, it’s clear that the huge contracts are already finished. Are we on the path of extra environment friendly variations of Zen 4, RDNA 3 and RTX 40 by 2023? Who is aware of.

TSMC intermediate nodes

TSMC 5 nm

The intermediate nodes permit the use of designs from a earlier node underneath a extra superior manufacturing course of and subsequently launch variations with higher technical specs and efficiency of CPU, GPU or APU that exist already in the market. TSMC’s N4P manufacturing course of is one in every of these.

TSMC’s common technique for fairly a while is to create intermediate nodes between its massive nodes to supply prospects whose merchandise don’t require a full node bounce a extra technologically superior model than the present one. This was the case of the 12FF which was a sophisticated model of its 16FF node, additionally of the present N6 which is an optimized model of the N7 that makes use of a part of the know-how of the N5 and clearly the future N4 and its variant N4P.

The motive why these manufacturing nodes exist is for a truth, if you wish to port a design from a present node to a extra superior one, the complete chip must be fully redesigned as a result of the design requirements change. In many circumstances to cowl sure market segments it’s higher to go for an improved model of present know-how. The downside is that the manufacturing node utilized by the unique fashions could be a limitation in density or variety of transistors, clock velocity, consumption or any of the above together.