NVidia blowout quarter: can AMD make a dent going forward?

I am surprised by the lack of reaction to yesterday’s explosive Nvidia beat.

I am of course optimistic that AMD can grow share vs. where they are now but are we facing Nvidia as the new Intel, basically? The 800 pound gorilla of the age of AI, that we won’t be able to dethrone? Are we getting competitive in time?

“The data center of the past, which was largely CPUs for file retrieval, is going to be, in the future, generative data,” Huang said. “Instead of retrieving data, you’re going to retrieve some data, but you’ve got to generate most of the data using AI.”

“So instead of millions of CPUs, you’ll have a lot fewer CPUs, but they will be connected to millions of GPUs,” he continued.

For example, Nvidia’s own DGX systems, which are essentially an AI computer for training in one box, use eight of Nvidia’s high-end H100 GPUs, and only two CPUs.

Google’s A3 supercomputer pairs eight H100 GPUs alongside a single high-end Xeon processor made by Intel.

That’s one reason why Nvidia’s data center business grew 14% during the first calendar quarter versus flat growth for AMD’s data center unit and a decline of 39% in Intel’s AI and data center business unit.

Plus, Nvidia’s GPUs tend to be more expensive than many central processors. Intel’s most recent generation of Xeon CPUs can cost as much as $17,000 at list price. A single Nvidia H100 can sell for $40,000 on the secondary market.

Nvidia will face increased competition as the market for AI chips heats up. AMD has a competitive GPU business, especially in gaming, and Intel has its own line of GPUs as well. Startups are building new kinds of chips specifically for AI, and mobile-focused companies like Qualcomm and Apple keep pushing the technology so that one day it might be able to run in your pocket, not in a giant server farm. Google and Amazon are designing their own AI chips.

But Nvidia’s high-end GPUs remain the chip of choice for current companies building applications like ChatGPT, which are expensive to train by processing terabytes of data, and are expensive to run later in a process called “inference,” which uses the model to generate text, images, or make predictions.

Analysts say that Nvidia remains in the lead for AI chips because of its proprietary software that makes it easier to use all of the GPU hardware features for AI applications.

Huang said Wednesday that the company’s software would not be easy to replicate.

“You have to engineer all of the software and all of the libraries and all of the algorithms, integrate them into and optimize the frameworks, and optimize it for the architecture, not just one chip but the architecture of an entire data center,” he said on a call with analysts.\


Intel needs to do one of two things to return to its dominance. They need to pass TSMC in process, and they need to pass AMD in architecture. AMD and NVidia both have an advantage in not having to keep SOTA fabs; that’s expensive. It’s also a disadvantage (single point of dependence) and if you are not even with the big boy fabs it can be a large disadvantage. NVidia dodged much of the direct competition with Intel by concentrating on GPUs, but that’s ended. Since GPUs have proven very competitive in data centers, Intel, AMD, and NV are all competing in multiple products. Intel has investing a lot of money into making their graphics better, but the farther away we get from AMD’s ATI acquisition, the better it looks. I still think AMD overpaid, but it’s hard to deny how the integrated chips (once the arrived) helped make Ryzen.

I trust NVidia’s press more than Intel’s, but not a lot more. I think NV’s chips are becoming more like AMD’s in the type of tasks they do well, as AMD’s have improved graphics capacities and now chiplet diversity. Intel still has nothing to show for their investments. Their foundries lag behind TSMC, their graphics lags behind both AMD and NV, their CPUs have yet to pass AMD’s. When Ryzen came out, I projected (based on history) that Intel might take as long as until 2022 to catch AMD. I sold at a good time, not the best time, but a good time, and then got back in at another good time in a much smaller amount. If the government has to delay social security payments, it will not bother us at all.

I now think Intel may be 2025 at the soonest before passing AMD, and I think that is conservative. I think AMD and NV are regularly taking share from Intel. I see flexibility for AMD over Intel, and I think there will always be DC advantages for AMD and NVidia, and likely even Intel. NV might be best now in data center, but I think AMD is better poised to adapt as chips change. I’d be more worried about Intel than the others.


I hope AMD can get this chip out this year as they announced. I hope that this chip is competitive with the Nvidia gpu running AI. if it is then AMD will make some money because the Nvidia gpu gets $40,000 per card or more.

Toms hardware benched Nvidia offerings against AMD and although Nvidia is the clear leader, AMD is competitive in the mainstream offerings.

Above is another instance where AMD beats intel on Windows 11 and AI. I saw a few articles at the close saying that intel and amd should not be benefitting from the AI boom, but I beg to differ…doc


The comparison is apt. I think just like with Intel, the chip buyers will want a competitor just to keep Nvidia on the ball. That points at AMD to me. Maybe it’s me being superstitious but AMD’s shareprice performance looks so solid, it’s as if somebody knows something is coming.


It could be MI300 beta testers, excited by their results :wink: