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.

Some Thoughts

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.

Related Reading:

Sources: AMD, Acer, ASUS, Dell, MSI

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  • EliteRetard - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - link

    Based on initial testing it looks like the 4900HS IGP performs on par and sometimes much better than a discrete Nvidia MX250 GPU.

    I very much want to see laptops using these H series CPU with IGP only.
    It should be easy enough to just cut the DGPU and it's price out of the gaming units.

    Such laptops would be great for anybody that wants/needs CPU power but isn't heavy into gaming. The IGP is still powerful enough for casual games like Rocket League, DOTA, LOL, etc.

    The Asus Zephryus with 1TB SSD, 16GB DDR4 3200, 1080 120Hz, and the RTX 2060 is like $1500. Just remove the GPU and cut the price by $250-300 and you'd have a really great budget workstation (with even better battery life and lower weight).
  • Alistair - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - link

    They do have a very inexpensive Zephyrus G14 model coming. The base model is $1050.
  • Alistair - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - link

    GA401IH-BR7N2BL (gray), $1,050: FHD 60Hz, Ryzen 7 4800HS, 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD, GeForce GTX 1650
  • Alistair - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - link

    What you want is this one:

    GA401IU-BS76 (gray) $1,300: FHD 120Hz, Ryzen 7 4800HS, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Max-Q
  • EliteRetard - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - link

    Make that $1,100 retail without the 1660ti...I could recommend it as a premium option.
    Actually I'd like to see a good budget variant 4800H/S at $700 retail as well. Even if it's heavier plastic, 1080 60Hz, 1x8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, etc. as long as it's easily upgraded.

    I know lots of people who need computing power and are stuck with a desktop because there's literally no laptop options for them. Something fairly portable, with as much CPU power as you can get with minimum 5 hours of working battery, and not crazy expensive. These people don't just fart around on Facebook, the U series chips have always been laughable for real work.

    Past couple years it has been possible to get a decently portable gaming laptop, but it was either incredibly expensive ($1,600+) and/or had terrible battery life. These new Ryzen 4000 H series chips are fast enough, efficient enough, and cheap enough to make an amazing work laptop.

    It's actually quite infuriating that everybody insists you absolutely MUST HAVE A GAMING GPU or you can't possibly need any performance at all... If you seriously think only gamers need a proper CPU please just go away, you obviously don't know anything about computers (not aimed at you Alistair).
  • otaconjh - Wednesday, April 1, 2020 - link

    You're exactly right. My dream laptop is a light portable version of my Acer Aspire E5 573-G that can play Rocket League on par with a PS4.
    I could do all my programming work on that, throw it in my backpack, cycle home and do some light gaming all on a single charge.
  • Rookierookie - Wednesday, April 1, 2020 - link

    Of course there are options, they just aren't willing to pay for them. $1600 is not at all expensive considering that you want both portability and power, and something like the Dell XPS 15 is fairly representative for non-gaming, high-end laptops for work.
  • kmmatney - Sunday, May 3, 2020 - link

    I agree that one of these without a dGPU would make a great workstation. I have a 17" Dell Mobile precision laptop (bought in 2016) with XEON cpu - it cost almost $5K new (a lot of that was the Quadro M5000M). Amazing that I could replace this with something much faster for 1/4 the cost. My work load is programming, industrial automation, and scientific computations , and I typically am running 2 or 3 virtual machines at any given time. I also travel a lot, so a desktop doesn't work. These new mobile Ryzen cpus look absolutely amazing without any dGPU.
  • jeremyshaw - Tuesday, March 31, 2020 - link

    Those people can be easily served by a 4800U.
  • lightningz71 - Wednesday, April 1, 2020 - link

    Exactly, though, it needs to be in TDP-up mode to run at 35-45Watts, AND it has to have enough cooling to hold that level. I remember some of the 2xxx and 3xxx APU laptops that had decent processors, but had such poor cooling solutions that they thermally throttled very early. Just a for-instance, the Apire 5 models with the 2xxx processors came with lowish TDP settings and a barely adequate thermal management system. It was a popular mod to get the larger hearsink from the related Nitro, which used the same motherboard and chassis design, but with a dGPU, and replace the one on the Aspire. Combined with good thermal paste, and the software to modify the TDP, It would hold maximum boost numbers for quite a long time, provided that the vents were clear.

    I'd love to see a 4800u laptop with a great cooling setup, a solid 1080p/60 screen, wifi 6, 16gb of LPDDR4X RAM, an NVME slot, a 2.5" bay, and a 95wh battery in a non-gaudy, but well ventilated not too slim case. It would probably be very profitable even at $700.

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