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Yellow Carp: Is this AMD’s RDNA3?

In the release notes for AMD’s latest firmware patches I found some interesting codenames.

Yellow Carp is part of a new version of the System Management Unit (SMUsmu_v13_0_1) which seems to replace an early release (13.0.0). For reference, AMD’s graphics related devices are divided into different SMUs depending on the IP required, some examples:

SMU11
– Sienna Cichlid
– Navy Flounder
– Dimgrey Cavefish
– Van Gogh (SMU variant)
– Arcturus (MI100 Instinct)

SMU12
– Renoir
– Green Sardine

SMU13
– MI200
– Yellow Carp

So seeing new devices within SMU13 is interesting as it could point to new graphics IP.

Warning: Speculation galore

Looking at the release notes there are several new codenames that standout. Yellow Carp is defined as an APU which likely means it’s Rembrandt, so that’s Zen3 based. It’s possible this will include RDNA2 graphics given how APUs tend to lag behind in terms of graphics IP, but there’s some chance that this will include RDNA3, given that it’s scheduled for release towards the end of 2021 according to a leaked roadmap.

In October of 2019 I speculated in a video that Rembrandt would be AMD’s 5nm monster APU to take on the laptop market and possibly render mid-range dGPUs obsolete. A year later it remains unclear whether this is indeed AMD’s strategy, but nevertheless Yellow Carp seems to point towards this specific APU.

What’s interesting about SMU13 is that Yellow Carp is not the only codename associated with it. We also find mention of MI200 (RDNA3 Radeon Instinct), Mero (Custom APU), and Chachani, along with previous already known codenames like Badami.

Chachani is a system platform and seems to be related to the Mero custom APU, what exactly this is for is unclear but probably data center related.

Apple and Chromebooks

With so many codenames it’s difficult to speculate on what APUs and GPUs we will be seeing, but my speculative guesses are that AMD will be launching the following products throughout next year:

  • Low power APUs specific for Chromebooks (still Zen3+Vega)
  • Custom hardware for Apple, probably some sort of professional grade GPU (?)
  • MCM based GPU for the data center (Arcturus based)
  • Data Center APU, possibly a many thread part for offloading certain types of computation from the host-cpu (Mero?)
  • New Instinct card based on CDNAx/RDNA3 (MI200)
  • A new APU for Microsoft’s 2021 Surface (Lucienne – low power)
  • APUs with Zen 3 cores and RDNA2/3 Graphics (Rembrandt -Yellow Carp)

Other products not included here have already been made publicly known by data miners and other sources, like Navy Flounders, etc.

As new patches are added to public repos and as new files make my way from other sources I’ll get a better sense of what all of these codenames are. Follow me on Twitter @coreteks and support my work on patreon for more semiconductor industry related content 🙂

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