AMD will be launching their second-generation Ryzen processors later this year, with a tease surfacing on the upcoming Ryzen 5 2600 that will succeed the current-gen Ryzen 5 1600 processor.
In some leaked Geekbench results, the Pinnacle Ridge-based Ryzen 5 2600 is 14.5% faster than the Ryzen 5 1600 in the single-threaded test, and a huge 31.5% faster in the multi-threaded benchmark.
AMD will get more performance out of Pinnacle Ridge before it hits consumers, but if these results are right we could be in for quite the surprise with the next wave of Ryzen CPUs.
There are some new AMD Ryzen APU owners that can't get their new Vega-powered APUs working in their socket AM4 motherboards, as they need a motherboard firmware update.
But how do you do that if your new Ryzen 5 2200/2400G processor doesn't work in your existing AM4 motherboard? This is where AMD is offering Ryzen APU owners a free "boot kit" that will help flash your firmware, with the kit including a dual-core A6 9500 APU from AMD.
AMD will send users the CPU but will require it back, something that will get you up and running. Pretty damn awesome of AMD to do that, so high-five to Team Red!
ARM isn't sitting quietly in its fight against the major chipmakers, with the company announcing its new Project Trillium, which Engadget reports as a "combination of hardware and software ingredients designed explicitly to speed up AI-related technologies like machine learning and neural networks".
ARM ML will be much faster at machine learning tasks compared to normal CPUs and GPUs, with 2-4x the real-world throughput. The ML in ARM ML stands for machine learning, while ARM OD will handle object detection. ARM OD can handle "virtually unlimited" subjects in real-time at 1080p 60FPS, and while it is detecting people, it is good at face detection, poses, and even gestures.
On the software side of things there's ARM NN (neural network) that will act as the "go-between" for neural network frameworks like Google's TensorFlow, and the ARM-based processors.
ARM won't have their new Project Trillium products until 2H 2018 where we should see Qualcomm, Samsung, and others make them into real-world products.
AMD is only just getting their EPYC server processors into systems now, after the announcement and launch of EPYC over 12 months ago now, and we're already hearing news about the 7nm EPYC successor codenamed Rome.
The rumors on Rome are coming from China with WCCFTech picking it up, with the next-gen Rome CPUs packing a huge 64C/128T of performance for one SKU. AMD will reportedly have two different EPYC dies, with:
- Die1: Single CCX 6 core, each Die 12 core, single CPU maximum 48 core
- Die2: Single CCX 8-core, each Die 16 core, single CPU maximum 64 core
The picture above is reprotedly the Zeppelin die with 12 cores per die, and four dies totaling 48 cores. The rumor is that AMD will have a second offering with 16 cores per Zeppelin die, bringing the total CPU cores to a huge 64. If AMD does pull this off, Intel will be pushing out bricks, from you know where.
AMD had a huge year in 2017 with the successful announcements and launches of both Ryzen and Ryzen Threadripper, quickly stealing sales from Intel and causing Chipzilla to react in ways we've never seen before.
But the tide is turning and now we're seeing that as of November 2017, Intel sales are totally dominating, and that two CPUs in particular are doing major damage to AMD. Intel's Core i5-8600K and Core i7-8700K are both demolishing AMD thanks to new data from Minefactory.de.
These numbers show CPU sales from February last year, right through to January this year. You can see that for the first 9-10 months of 2017 that Intel's flagship Core i7-7700K was the CPU of choice for most enthusiasts, and that the only time that changed was in December 2017 and January 2018, when everything flicked over to the new Coffee Lake-based Core i7-8700K.
Out of nowhere, we have a new company that we'll be keeping a close eye on; Ampere. Ampere has just launched a new 64-bit ARM server processor that will compete against products released by Qualcomm, HP Enterprise, and many others.
ARM is an important cog in Ampere's new machine, as it is capable of great power efficiency and lower cost of ownership. Until now, the biggest issue with ARM-based systems is that there isn't a massive list of applications that will work with ARM processors, but that will soon change.
Ampere's first processor rocks a custom core ARM v8 64-bit at up to 3.3GHz, up to 1TB of memory and a 125W TDP. Ampere is fabless, and will have production of these new ARM processors sometime in 2H 2018.
Vice president of software and platform engineering at Ampere, Kumar Sankaran, explains: "Historically, it has taken 8 to 10 years for a new architecture to work in the data center. You need the software ecosystem that follows the hardware". This is why Ampere adopted ARM's technology, with Sankaran saying that ARM in the data center is similar to where x86 was many years ago now.
Ampere is aiming for the usual workloads of AI, big data and even next-gen datacenters. Ampere is run by a very capable team, something that is comprised of:
- Chief Architect - Atiq Bajwa, 30-year Intel veteran and head of all X86 architecture (all products)
- Sr. Fellow - Greg Favor former AMD fellow on K6/7 team and AMCC Arm lead architect
- EVP of hardware Engineering - Rohit Vidwans - 26 year Intel veteran, head of all platform engineering
- CFO/COO - Chi Miller, former Intel and Apple executive
The Carlyle Group is a major investor in Ampere, investing back in October 2017.
Patrick Moorhead, Founder, President & Principal Analyst of Moor Insights & Strategy reached out to me and provided me with the following insight into Ampere: "As Calxeda, AppliedMicro, Marvell, Samsung, and Broadcom found, competing against Intel in the datacenter is a challenging and expensive proposition. The market does want more companies with competitive offerings and if Ampere has the funding and time, it appears the company has recruited some solid talent, so the outcome could be different".
AMD has announced that its next-gen Zen 2 cores are now ready, and will begin sampling later this year, with Zen 2-based CPUs launching in 2019.
AMD has enjoyed a somewhat positive year with its Ryzen CPUs based on the Zen architecture, but the new Zen 2 architecture has plenty of improvements that will see AMD hopefully continue its success in 2019, and beyond. During AMD's recent Q4 2017 earnings call the CEO of AMD, Lisa Su, said: "Our Zen 2 design is now complete and we will be sampling to our customers later this year".
The company will launch Zen+ as well which will be based on 12nm, while the new Zen 2 architecture will be using the smaller 7nm process.
AMD will be having a huge year this year, at least in their CPU department, with the release of their refreshed Ryzen CPUs and new 400-series chipsets in a couple of months. But now news is breaking of their upcoming Starship/Mattise CPUs that will be released late this year and early 2019.
HWINFO is now recognizing a bunch of new CPUs, AMD's upcoming 400-series chipset, and even Intel's upcoming Ice Lake-SP platform. AMD's next-gen Starship CPU is going to be a monster, offering a huge 48C/96T of CPU power rocking the refreshed Zen+ or Zen 2 architecture.
Here's what HWINFO32 and HWINFO64 v5.72 supports:
- Added recognition of AMD 400-series chipset.
- Improved recognition of Bay Trail steppings.
- Enhanced reporting of turbo ratio limits with fused and resolved values (BDX, SKX).
- Added option to disable access to Corsair and some Asetek-based coolers.
- Added recognition of some future AMD Vega and Navi GPUs.
- Added NVIDIA Quadro V100.
- Added reporting of GPU VRAM module model for some AMD GPUs.
- Fixed enumeration of RAID drives on AMD promontory chipsets.
- Fixed disk activity sensor names on some RAID systems.
- Enhanced preliminary support of Ice Lake-SP (ICX).
- Fixed reporting of Total Memory Encryption feature status in summary.
- Added reporting of active memory channels on AMD Zen.
- Enhanced monitoring of Intel GPU video decode usage.
- Fixed flickering of RTSS OSD in some applications with high framerates.
- Added monitoring of Corsair H80i Pro, H100i Pro, H115i Pro and H150i Pro.
- Improved enumeration of network adapters.
- Enhanced support of AMD Starship, Matisse and Radeon RX Vega M.
- Enhanced monitoring of new Intel Compute Card models.
- Unified HWiNFO32 and HWiNFO64 packages (universal installer, combined portable).
AMD is in the middle of a class action lawsuit from investors over its not-so-good comments about Meltdown and Spectre, but there was worse news last week when AMD machines were being bricked by Windows 10 security updates meant to help, not harm.
The latest updates come in the form of Windows 10 Creators Update (version 1703) and Windows 10 Anniversary Update (version 1607). These cumulative updates push the Creators Update systems to build 15063.877 (support KB4057144) and Anniversary Update PCs to build 14393.2034 (support KB4057142).
The big star here is KB4073290 that will fix the bricked AMD devices on the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, so grab that if you've been sitting there twiddling your thumbs with your fresh new Ryzen/Threadripper-powered gaming beast.
We all know that the Meltdown and Spectre security holes have caused headaches for Intel and AMD, but now AMD has been hit with a class action lawsuit that seeks to "recover damages for Advanced Micro investors under the federal securities laws".
Rosen Law Firm is a global investor rights firm, where a class action lawsuit has been kicked off on "behalf of purchasers of the securities of Advanced Micro Devices". The lawsuit details:
"Defendants during the Class Period made materially false and/or misleading statements and/or failed to disclose that: (1) a fundamental security flaw in Advanced Micro's processor chips renders them susceptible to hacking; and (2) as a result, Advanced Micro's public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times. When the true details entered the market, the lawsuit claims that investors suffered damages".
It seems AMD is in deep trouble over saying: "To be clear, the security research team identified three variants targeting speculative execution. The threat and the response to the three variants differ by microprocessor company, and AMD is not susceptible to all three variants. Due to differences in AMD's architecture, we believe there is a near zero risk to AMD processors at this time. We expect the security research to be published later today and will provide further updates at that time".
I've reached out to AMD, with the company saying to TweakTown "We believe these allegations are without merit. We intend to vigorously defend against these baseless claims".