AMD's upcoming Radeon HD 8000M "Solar System" line of mobile GPUs, which are slated for a CES 2013 launch, were detailed in a press-deck scored by Engadget. According to the slides, the Radeon HD 8000M is based entirely on the new Graphics CoreNext (GCN) micro-architecture, supports DirectX 11.1, and AMD's equivalent of NVIDIA Optimus, the Enduro Technology, which dynamically switches between discrete and integrated GPUs, which coupled with AMD ZeroCore power technology, completely turn off discrete GPUs at low graphics processing loads.
With the Radeon HD 8000M series, AMD appears to be introducing a new ASIC to cover three product lines - HD 8500M, HD 8600M, and HD 8700M, by tinkering with specs such as clock speeds and memory type. This silicon features 384 GCN stream processors, and a 128-bit memory interface, supporting GDDR5 and DDR3. The HD 8500M series features GPU clock speeds up to 650 MHz, while the HD 8600M up to 775 MHz. Memory clocks for both lines can go up to 4.50 GHz (GDDR5) and 2.00 GHz (DDR3). The HD 8700M series, on the other hand, ups GPU clock speeds up to 850 MHz.
AMD's second chip that makes up the HD 8800M series is similar in specifications to the current-generation "Cape Verde," which goes into making desktop Radeon HD 7000 series discrete GPUs. It features 640 GCN stream processors, GPU clock speed ranging from 650 to 700 MHz, and memory clock speed up to 4.50 GHz. In its press-deck, AMD compared the HD 8870M to NVIDIA's current-generation GeForce GTX 650M GDDR5, HD 8770M to HD 7670M (which is based on the dated VLIW5 architecture), and HD 8690M to the HD 7590M. The new chips, by AMD's own testing, are 20~45 percent faster than their competitors.
Perhaps AMD's winning strategy for the HD 8000M series is to leverage Enduro, ZeroCore power, and the GCN architecture's GPU-compute performance competitiveness over NVIDIA Kepler. Notebooks (and possibly all-in-one desktops) based on the new chips will launch over Q1-2013. In Q2, AMD will launch performance-segment SKUs in the lineup.