Monday, January 10th 2022

AMD Wanting to Time Launch of AM5 Platform with DDR5 Availability

It would seem that AMD is concerned about DDR5 memory availability in the market, at least based on an interview that Tom's Hardware had with David McAfee, the Corporate VP and GM of the Client Channel business at AMD. It's not just about availability it seems, but also pricing, as McAfee is quoted saying "One of the dynamics that we do think about a great deal is how and when to introduce that AM5 ecosystem and ensure that the DDR5 supply, as well as pricing of DDR5 memory, is mature and something that's easily attainable for an end-user".

With the current issues that the DRAM module makers are experiencing, with both staff issues related to the pandemic and the PMIC shortage some are having, the question is how long it'll take until there's a steady supply of DDR5 modules in the market, at a reasonable price point. We obviously don't know what kind of DRAM speeds AMD is aiming for either, although it's unlikely that the company is looking at something faster than JEDEC spec at this point in time, even though we expect faster speeds will also be supported. Outside of the US, it seems like a cheap stick of 8 GB of DDR5 memory is going for around the US$100 mark (€89) or roughly four times that of a similar DDR4 stick. Crucial in the US is offering a single 8 GB stick for US$68, with a 16 GB stick costing the same as a pair of 8 GB sticks, US$137. This is unlikely to be the kind of price point AMD is hoping for and most DDR5 memory modules are a lot more expensive.
McAfee continues "And so there may be other forces beyond the product itself that slow down or meter the introduction of APUs into that AM5 socket. You know, we do expect that to be an enthusiast-first introduction. And I think we're going to have to watch very carefully just how the DDR5 transition takes place and how quickly both supply and prices come in line to make it more affordable for a mainstream consumer that might be more interested in making a product in that socket." Although APUs are expected to gain more from the increased memory performance of DDR5 than CPUs, due to the integrated GPU getting more bandwidth compared to when paired with DDR4 memory, it looks like they might take longer to make an appearance than in the past from AMD, if DDR5 pricing and availability isn't right.

However, unlike Intel's Alder Lake, it doesn't seem like AMD's AM5 platform has an option to use DDR4 memory, which could be the achilles heel for the platform as a whole. Likewise, the Ryzen 6000 series of mobile APUs might also end up suffering, although AMD claims that its partners are "well-positioned" when it comes to supply of DDR5 and LPDDR5 for mobile products. Time will tell how things play out, but it looks like AMD might have painted itself into a corner, if supply and pricing doesn't improve in the next six to 12 months.
Source: Tom's Hardware
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109 Comments on AMD Wanting to Time Launch of AM5 Platform with DDR5 Availability

#51
bug
TiggerThat's why they gave it a dual controller, wake up, I don't think it had anything to do with performance, more about supply of DDR5 or they probably would have made it DDR5 only. Maybe AMD should do the same instead of hoping the supply is there. Enough of ADL talk anyway.

Just hope there is enough supply for AMD when it is released.
Let's not forget Zen4 is 5nm. AMD may have a capacity/production issue on their hands which they may try to solve/hide by blaming DDR5.
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#52
ratirt
TiggerThat's why they gave it a dual controller, wake up, I don't think it had anything to do with performance, more about supply of DDR5 or they probably would have made it DDR5 only. Maybe AMD should do the same instead of hoping the supply is there. Enough of ADL talk anyway.

Just hope there is enough supply for AMD when it is released.
Dude it is a common knowledge that the newly released DDR mem will need some time to catch up. That was my point not that they have bragged about it. And yes they did btw.
I never cared about Alder Lake in this thread but it would seem there are people who just have to mention Intel's AL no matter what the conversation is about since, in their eyes, it always ties to the subject.
You cant even have a conversation about other aspects since AL always comes along. It's just annoying.
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#53
Tigger
I'm the only one
ratirtDude it is a common knowledge that the newly released DDR mem will need some time to catch up. That was my point not that they have bragged about it. And yes they did btw.
I never cared about Alder Lake in this thread but it would seem there are people who just have to mention Intel's AL no matter what the conversation is about since, in their eyes, it always ties to the subject.
You cant even have a conversation about other aspects since AL always comes along. It's just annoying.
AL was mentioned in relation to DDR5 which was relevant to the thread.
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#54
bug
ratirtDude it is a common knowledge that the newly released DDR mem will need some time to catch up. That was my point not that they have bragged about it. And yes they did btw.
I never cared about Alder Lake in this thread but it would seem there are people who just have to mention Intel's AL no matter what the conversation is about since, in their eyes, it always ties to the subject.
You cant even have a conversation about other aspects since AL always comes along. It's just annoying.
Both Zen4 and AL are their companies' first take on DDR5 in the consumer space. Since the approaches are different, it is only logical to compare them. Otherwise we're taking stuff out of the context.

The "newly released DDR mem will need some time to catch up" argument is also taking stuff out of context, because, while transitions never went smoothly, this time around the transition is only aggravated by a bonus supply shortage/ridiculous pricing. Makes it look like it's business as usual - it is not.
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#55
Ahhzz
Why_MeToo bad Intel doesn't offer a choice with Alder Lake such as DDR4 boards ... oh wait ...
This is not a discussion of Intel vs AMD. This is not a discussion about Intel's offerings. This is a trolling statement. Keep those out of the thread, or you'll be kept out of the thread. This goes for everyone here.
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#56
TheinsanegamerN
Chrispy_If AMD is deciding to delay AM5 because of DDR5 supply problems, perhaps they have time to get some more 3D vCache models to include more than just the 5800X3D?
They hav eno reason to do that, people are gobbling up zen 3 as it is. Better for AMD to sandbag and wait for a proper zen 4 AM5 launch.
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#57
Chrispy_
TheinsanegamerNThey hav eno reason to do that, people are gobbling up zen 3 as it is. Better for AMD to sandbag and wait for a proper zen 4 AM5 launch.
If they have the capacity to make them and they're more profitable than regular Zen3, then they will. That is reason enough.

The reason AMD cited for the 5800X3D being the only SKU last week was that it was a proof of concept prior to wider adoption across Zen4. If Zen4 is delayed then perhaps their plans regarding Zen3+ will also change.

This is all obviously speculation and guesswork, anyone claiming otherwise is full of shit.
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#58
EatingDirt
stimpy88The only problem is that a down clocked 8 core gamer CPU is not what I, and I suspect, many others want. If they release a 16 core version, thats overclockable 300-500MHz, then I'm in. But AMD have made noises that a more-than-8-core 3D cache part is not going to happen.

DDR5 will be no better in 9 months time, maybe it will drop slightly in price, but it's still crap with no tangible perf gain for 3x the price, and it will stay that way for at least another year or two. Even if DDR5 was only an extra 25% higher cost than DDR4, i'd still take DDR4.

Intel have seen the issues convincing people to use DDR5, and AMD should do the same.
Why do you believe that pricing and availability won't be better in 9 months? Chip shortages are the driving cause of DDR5 pricing/availability, and all speculation is shortages will be easing during the end of this year, hence making DDR5 more available and with more availability it will inevitably become cheaper.

Will DDR5 be a better value than DDR4 in 9 months? No. New DDR transitions have never been a better value until a few years after release, but... it's going to happen, and next thing you know, in ~8 years we're going to be complaining about how awful of a value DDR6 is to DDR5.
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#59
R0H1T
Chrispy_If they have the capacity to make them and they're more profitable than regular Zen3, then they will.
Yes & no ~ they have relatively good( malleable) capacity for zen3 but definitely not enough for zen4, they can do lots of stuff on 7nm & move various SKU around for DIY if they want to.
Chrispy_If Zen4 is delayed then perhaps their plans regarding Zen3+ will also change.
That's a big big IF, because that would imply Genoa is also late! Zen3+ is mobile only, for now, & on 6nm so neither 7nm/5nm affect it much if at all.
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#60
ratirt
bugBoth Zen4 and AL are their companies' first take on DDR5 in the consumer space. Since the approaches are different, it is only logical to compare them. Otherwise we're taking stuff out of the context.

The "newly released DDR mem will need some time to catch up" argument is also taking stuff out of context, because, while transitions never went smoothly, this time around the transition is only aggravated by a bonus supply shortage/ridiculous pricing. Makes it look like it's business as usual - it is not.
It is not about the transistors. Look at the price and what DDR5 offers today. Dont you think it needs time to catch up? It needs to catch up on variety of things. Like pricing, availability for instance. Why people always look through such a narrow window? Maybe you are focused too much on the technological aspect not getting the entire picture.
If DDR5 is so great why AMD has reservations with it? Price and supply despite its technological aspect for sure.
People put companies as an example for business and what it entails but refuse to think like one at the same time. That just bugs me. (get it? :) )
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#61
R0H1T
ratirtIf DDR5 is so great why AMD has reservations with it? Price and supply despite its technological aspect for sure.
The biggest issue IMO is 5nm capacity. DDR5 actually doesn't come into the equation at all.

Like for instance AMD didn't wait for half a dozen PCIe 4.0 drives, or GPUs, before launching the x570 (zen2?) platform.
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#62
ratirt
R0H1TThe biggest issue IMO is 5nm capacity. DDR5 actually doesn't come into the equation at all.

Like for instance AMD didn't wait for half a dozen PCIe 4.0 drives, or GPUs, before launching the x570 (zen2?) platform.
Well, AMD has expressed concerns about the DDR5 supply. I understand that concern since AMD want's to move for DDR5 totally without corner cutting with DDR4. It complicates the chip to introduce more controllers but on the other hand they have supply issues tied to AM5. They just don't want to release a product with poor availability. What's the point of releasing an awesome product if nobody can buy it or there is a problem obtaining other components for the platform. That's like a shot in a foot. If that happened, do you realize what kind of fuel would haters have? Not to mention, AMD would not be able to fix it since it would not have been them but other companies. I get it.
Maybe AMD is trying to aim for a high frequency ram modules and they don't know how far this year the DDR5 Ram will be able to go.
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#63
R-T-B
FouquinThanks for the helping of snark, appreciate that... My request was to do what other editors do and link within the article with hypertext. As the process to view the source from the forum is to go back to the main page and find the tiny 10pt greyscale font that's seemingly designed to be the least visible element on the page.
Not trying to take sides, but I do agree the way the forum posts show sources (or rather, don't) has always been kinda lame.
TheLostSwedeIf you don't like the way the site works, take it up with management.
I like your articles, but seriously, you are coming across as very snarky here. Intentional or language barrier? Thought you should know.
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#64
bug
ratirtWell, AMD has expressed concerns about the DDR5 supply. I understand that concern since AMD want's to move for DDR5 totally without corner cutting with DDR4. It complicates the chip to introduce more controllers but on the other hand they have supply issues tied to AM5. They just don't want to release a product with poor availability. What's the point of releasing an awesome product if nobody can buy it or there is a problem obtaining other components for the platform. That's like a shot in a foot. If that happened, do you realize what kind of fuel would haters have? Not to mention, AMD would not be able to fix it since it would not have been them but other companies. I get it.
Maybe AMD is trying to aim for a high frequency ram modules and they don't know how far this year the DDR5 Ram will be able to go.
And unlike evil Intel, AMD will also come and fix your house, do your laundry and help your children with their homework, that's how much AMD cares about you.

More likely, between 5nm supply constraints and home users not putting up with DDR5 pricing, AMD is simply prioritizing their server parts instead.
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#65
TheLostSwede
R-T-BI like your articles, but seriously, you are coming across as very snarky here. Intentional or language barrier? Thought you should know.
It was intentional, as I can't do anything about how the site works and I don't like getting blamed for things, especially when I follow how things are done here. Also, as a multi-year reader of the site, I kind of expect people to have figured out how source links work here, as it's not a recent thing. This is the second person now who has told me that I don't provide links to the sources, which is really quite frustrating, as it's something I make sure I always do, especially considering how much I loathe when other people copy content I've produced without a link back.
Posted on Reply
#66
bug
TheLostSwedeIt was intentional, as I can't do anything about how the site works and I don't like getting blamed for things, especially when I follow how things are done here. Also, as a multi-year reader of the site, I kind of expect people to have figured out how source links work here, as it's not a recent thing. This is the second person now who has told me that I don't provide links to the sources, which is really quite frustrating, as it's something I make sure I always do, especially considering how much I loathe when other people copy content I've produced without a link back.
Maybe if you used a 36px, bold red font for sources, people wouldn't miss them anymore. And this site would look so much more professional. /s

On a more constructive note, don't ever post when annoyed. Take a step back, let it pass and post afterwards.
Posted on Reply
#67
R-T-B
TheLostSwedeIt was intentional, as I can't do anything about how the site works and I don't like getting blamed for things, especially when I follow how things are done here. Also, as a multi-year reader of the site, I kind of expect people to have figured out how source links work here, as it's not a recent thing. This is the second person now who has told me that I don't provide links to the sources, which is really quite frustrating, as it's something I make sure I always do, especially considering how much I loathe when other people copy content I've produced without a link back.
I mean, I know the feeling as the same happened to me when I was writing, but this seems more a design fault than an actual complaint addressed against you specifically as a writer. Yes it is more w1zzard territory though.

Said my bit, at any rate.
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#68
TheLostSwede
R-T-BI mean, I know the feeling as the same happened to me when I was writing, but this seems more a design fault than a actual complaint addressed against you specifically as a writer.

Said my bit, at any rate.
And the only one that has the ability to fix that, is management.
Posted on Reply
#69
R-T-B
TheLostSwedeAnd the only one that has the ability to fix that, is management.
Indeed but no need to bite the users head off for an admitedly confusing design, was all I was trying to say.

I know it's not ideal. I also could be reading the room wrong, in which case feel free to ignore me.
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#70
MarsM4N
mechtechReally??? I’d be more concerned with video card supply vs ddr5!! DDR5 is probably easier and cheaper to get than a decent video card.

who wants to pair a bleeding edge platform with a 6 year old video card???
Exactly. :) But they didn't loose a word about GPU shortage. No surprise.
They know they will not sell a lot CPU's & mainboards when nobody can get their hands on a GPU.

I think the best upgrade path is to grab a pair of DDR5 before AM5 releases, wait for next gen GPU's (or for eBay getting flooded with outsourced GPU's) & buy the AM5 CPU at last.
Posted on Reply
#71
TheLostSwede
FouquinYou misunderstand what I am asking.



On the forum side there is no link to a source, not at the bottom nor within the body text of the article even in sections which directly refer to a source. Other articles include these:



I don't see how that's an offensive request considering the precedent set by the rest of the team.
It's not a precedent set by the rest of the team, all articles use the link at the bottom the to source, it's how the backend was designed.
The links in the articles are links back to older articles on TPU usually and it's not even something that's used in most articles here.
And honestly, if you want the link in the forums, talk to the boss, he's the only one that can fix that.
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#72
ratirt
bugAnd unlike evil Intel, AMD will also come and fix your house, do your laundry and help your children with their homework, that's how much AMD cares about you.

More likely, between 5nm supply constraints and home users not putting up with DDR5 pricing, AMD is simply prioritizing their server parts instead.
If AMD or Intel cares for your children and housekeeping good for you. There's no need to change the subject.
It is also hard to blame AMD for doing what's best for the company and at the same time expressing worries about DDR5 supply and pricing. The company lives from customers and clients so it is valid to express worry about component supply and pricing to the public. That is what they did.
You maybe have to distinguish nonsense and a valid point. Putting controllers for memory whichever comes along is rather easy but it also costs more. If you want to save cash for the production it is better to plan it. AMD is a company like any other and they have look for savings to improve profits. I thought that is clear.
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#73
Assimilator
AMD is in a bit of trouble here. They tied Zen 4/AM5 to DDR5, assuming Intel had done the same with ADL and would be subject to the same constraints, and were then blindsided by Intel launching ADL with combined DDR4 and DDR5 support. So now Intel is ahead in terms of product launch, it's much cheaper to upgrade to ADL than it will be to go to Zen 4 because you can reuse your current RAM with the former, and ADL's aggressive pricing against AMD's extortionate pricing and lack of true low-end options is definitely going to swing a fair bit of marketshare back Intel's way before Zen 4 gets out of the gate. In short, AMD is staring down the prospect of half a year or more without any new product launches (no, the stupid 5800X3DOMGWTFLMAOOO doesn't count), against a competitor's refreshed and compelling product stack... not a good place to be in.

The problem IMO is Zen 4 being designed for AM5 and thus coupled to DDR5. When AM4 launched, DDR4 had already been on the market for 2 years, but DDR5 will have had a year or less of market presence at the time that AMD hopes to launch Zen 4/AM5 - and that's before you take into account the DDR5 shortages and price hikes. To my mind it would've been a lot more logical to keep Zen 4 on AM4/DDR4 (which could have been released sooner, perhaps even preempting ADL), then release Zen 5/AM5 as a simple Zen 4 refresh with DDR5 support a year later.

Say what you like about Intel, they've definitely been a lot smarter about the DDR5 transition than AMD has. I'm honestly expecting Zen 4 to slip to 2023 at this point.
R0H1TThe biggest issue IMO is 5nm capacity. DDR5 actually doesn't come into the equation at all.
What are your sources for this?
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#74
bug
AssimilatorAMD is in a bit of trouble here. They tied Zen 4/AM5 to DDR5, assuming Intel had done the same with ADL and would be subject to the same constraints, and were then blindsided by Intel launching ADL with combined DDR4 and DDR5 support. So now Intel is ahead in terms of product launch, it's much cheaper to upgrade to ADL than it will be to go to Zen 4 because you can reuse your current RAM with the former, and ADL's aggressive pricing against AMD's extortionate pricing and lack of true low-end options is definitely going to swing a fair bit of marketshare back Intel's way before Zen 4 gets out of the gate. In short, AMD is staring down the prospect of half a year or more without any new product launches (no, the stupid 5800X3DOMGWTFLMAOOO doesn't count), against a competitor's refreshed and compelling product stack... not a good place to be in.

The problem IMO is Zen 4 being designed for AM5 and thus coupled to DDR5. When AM4 launched, DDR4 had already been on the market for 2 years, but DDR5 will have had a year or less of market presence at the time that AMD hopes to launch Zen 4/AM5 - and that's before you take into account the DDR5 shortages and price hikes. To my mind it would've been a lot more logical to keep Zen 4 on AM4/DDR4 (which could have been released sooner, perhaps even preempting ADL), then release Zen 5/AM5 as a simple Zen 4 refresh with DDR5 support a year later.

Say what you like about Intel, they've definitely been a lot smarter about the DDR5 transition than AMD has. I'm honestly expecting Zen 4 to slip to 2023 at this point.
Somewhat unrelated, but I loved how AMD fans tried to spun all that into "but AL doesn't make sense together with DDR4, because the 5-7% performance loss is totally unacceptable".
AssimilatorWhat are your sources for this?
Idk about a source, but mobile has had a habit of gobbling up quite a bit of new nodes capacity.
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#75
Chrispy_
stimpy88If AMD only support DDR5, then I'm out. DDR5 is expensive and largely crap.
AMD will only support DDR5.

They know DDR5 is currently expensive and crap which is why they're waiting until it's cheap and not crap.
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