A Quick Look at the Subor Z+ Console/PC Hybrid: A Custom AMD SoC Called FireFlightby Ian Cutress on September 19, 2018 5:45 PM EST
One of the most interesting things in August (there were a lot) was that a company in China invested the best part of 400 million RMB / $60 million USD in a custom processor for its upcoming console and PC hybrid system. This processor comes from AMD’s Semi-Custom Division, and uses four Zen cores paired with 24 Vega compute units, making a beefy APU for a console system and a sizeable performer as a PC. One of the unique parts about the chip is that it uses GDDR5 for both CPU and GPU, which will be critical to its performance.
We have covered the initial launch of PlayRuyi’s Subor Z+ console in two articles, slowly going into more details as and when we get them:
- AMD Creates Quad Core Zen SoC with 24 Vega CUs for Chinese Consoles
- More Details About the ZhongShan Subor Z+ Console, with Custom AMD Ryzen SoC
On the back of those pieces, the product manager for the Subor Z+ got in touch with me via email. We have sent some questions back and forth, but the crux of the communication is that they have sent us a Z+ for review.
This is going to be fun. They’ve told as a lot. I mean, more than I ever expected. I'll save the juicy details for the full review.
The Z+ only arrived yesterday, so it's being tested for the full review. For now though, I wanted to publish something to whet the appetite. Be forewarned, I’m really bad at making videos like this. But here’s 25 minutes of starting the system up for the first time, and some benchmarks.
The codename for the SoC is ‘FireFlight’, which translates as Fenghuang. If some readers who were following the leaks on popular benchmarking websites were wondering, that’s the connection. It also explains why the graphics are labelled as ‘15FF’ – where FF stands for FireFlight.
On the hardware side, the console is listed as having:
- Four Ryzen Cores at 3.0 GHz, with Simultaneous Multi Threading
- 24 CUs of Radeon Vega, at 1.3 GHz, for 4 TFLOPs compute
- 8GB of GDDR5 at 256 GB/s
- OS Option 1 (PC Mode): Windows 10
- OS Option 2 (Console Mode): Windows 10 with Z+ Custom Interface
- Low Power Modes supported, with 30W 'background download' power
- 4.9 liter body, built-power supply, 'excellent' heat dissipation design
- 'Ultra-Mute' 33 dB at full horsepower
- Customizable appearance for unique designs
- 802.11ac WiFi, BlueTooth 4.1 (WiFi Module unknown)
- Storage is supplied through a 128GB M.2 SSD and optional 1TB HDD
- Audio stack supports SPDIF
- HDMI 2.0 is supported, as well as VR, 4K60, and HDCP 1.4
- System has four USB 3.0 ports and two USB 2.0 ports
We’ll aim for a full review in a couple of weeks, with our new GPU benchmark suite, as well as tests on the GDDR5. For now I need to work out what a good GPU comparison point might be. Kaby G? But that has HBM... Suggestions and thoughts are very welcome.
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Komachi_Ensaka - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - linkIf You can do it , I want to see Overclocking result of AMD Fenghuang Raven and CPU/GPU Clock Rates Graph.
Tarwinin - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - linkOk surprised it has hdcp 1.4 instead of 2.2.
Are you sure that's not a mistake?
timecop1818 - Thursday, September 20, 2018 - linkHDCP licensing is expensive. 2.2 is more expensive per unit than 1.4. And Chinese don't care about protection at all, so adding a cheaper hdcp license on there just to make it look like they care makes sense.
Tarwinin - Thursday, September 20, 2018 - linkPerhaps. But 2.2 is needed for 4k, although the lack of a Blu-ray drive means that it would only be necessary for streaming services that require it, and you're right on that front since they use local ones which might not.
Alistair - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - linkI'm very excited to see the review of this product. There is a huge opportunity for Microsoft to follow a similar strategy with their own consoles. Interesting unique one of a kind PCs to complement the console versions. Ryzen Xbox with Windows and an SSD. Should be a huge hit I would think, clearly the inspiration for this product.
milkod2001 - Thursday, September 20, 2018 - linkI'd buy my very first console if MS let me install there Windows officially and it was working as regular PC as well 100%. I think im not be only one who would.
coolhardware - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - linkAnybody know how many video outputs this device has?
Thank you :-)
dishayu - Wednesday, September 19, 2018 - linkThe picture has 2 HDMI ports.
HardwareDufus - Friday, September 21, 2018 - linkthe 2 HDMI ports are nice... I wish there were mITX boards that included 2 HDMI ports in lieu of DVI or DisplayPort.
vithrell - Friday, September 21, 2018 - linkIf you don't care about driving 4 displays at once but care about using two displays connected via HDMI you can easely convert from both DisplayPort and DVI to HDMI with cheap, passive adapters.