AMD Zen 4 CPUs coming in Fall 2022

With its commanding lead in performance and no obvious competition even with the upcoming Alder Lake generation, AMD looks set to enjoy the success of its Ryzen 5000 series CPUs for at least another year. Its next-generation Zen 4 CPUs, currently codenamed Raphael, are reportedly set to be announced in the third quarter of 2022, with a release before the holiday season, possibly as early as October.

Zen 4 is expected to be a major improvement over existing Zen 3 CPUs, with higher clock speeds (finally breaking the 5GHz barrier), increased IPC, and a new 5nm process node, all of which could lead to performance improvements of up to 50 percent, if some rumors are to be believed.

But we'll have to wait for it.

What's intriguing about this release schedule is that it may mean we get an intermedia Zen 3 refresh. AMD has been releasing Ryzen CPUs every year since 2017, so a 2021 release is likely again. With Zen 4 out for now, it likely means some kind of Zen 3 Ryzen 6000 launch, perhaps akin to the Zen+ second-generation Ryzen refresh. Those used a Zen+ architecture, which made minor improvements over the first generation. It was with Zen 2 that we saw huge gains to bring AMD into contention for the top CPUs again.

Any kind of Zen3+ is unlikely to be revolutionary, but as potentially the last-even AM4 CPUs to go on sale, they'd be an intriguing buy for anyone running Zen 2 or older CPUs.

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