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AMD Ryzen 7 Extreme Edition CPU pops up in a laptop – but what’s ‘extreme’ about it remains a mystery

NEC laptop with Ryzen 7 Extreme Edition
(Image credit: NEC)

AMD’s Ryzen 7 Extreme Edition might have seemed an improbable addition to the Ryzen range when it was first leaked a couple of months back, but it seems the processor is real, at least according to a laptop manufacturer which has listed the chip with a new machine.

NEC’s Lavie Direct N15 laptop offers the Ryzen 7 Extreme Edition as an option alongside the Ryzen 7 4700U and Ryzen 5 4500U mobile processors.

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The laptop listing was highlighted on Twitter by @momomo_us, with the chip having a base clock of 1.8GHz and boost to 4.2GHz. The 8-core (16-thread) Extreme Edition was previously glimpsed in a leaked benchmark back in May, as mentioned, with those exact specs – except the boost was listed as 4.3GHz.

Extremely what?

This is reportedly the top-end Ryzen 4000 U-series CPU, and as Tom’s Hardware (which spotted this) points out, those Extreme Edition specs are identical to the Ryzen 7 4800U, but the newcomer chip may be tweaked elsewhere for better performance (presumably – particularly given the ‘extreme’ name).

At this point, it’s not clear how, though – and NEC’s listing doesn’t tell us any more beyond the aforementioned specs. Tom’s theory is that the CPU could have a higher TDP, and therefore more thermal wiggle room to run for longer periods at sustained boosts, which seems a fair enough guess – although it is just that, a guess. We won’t know until we actually get to review a laptop with this Ryzen 7 Extreme Edition chip inside.

Intel uses the Extreme Edition label, which is why we previously thought that AMD wouldn’t name a product as such, and therefore that the earlier leak in May was more likely to have been off the mark. Seems like we were wrong, then, but it’s still a somewhat surprising move by AMD to adopt that moniker given its historical usage by Intel.