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AMD Provides Support for BIOS Update on 2nd Gen Ryzen - Boot Kit Available

The Socket AM4 platform is designed to be a long life, fully featured, scalable solution with support for multiple processors, with varying capabilities. Since the release of the AMD Socket AM4 motherboards in early 2017 with the AMD Ryzen desktop processor, there have been several BIOS updates made available through our motherboard partners. These updates not only provide improved system performance but also expand support for newer processors as they become available.

In February 2018, AMD began introduction of the new 2nd Gen Ryzen Desktop Processor with Radeon Vega Graphics. To enable support for this new processor, an updated BIOS is required. Due to the rapid pace of innovation, and strong demand for Ryzen Processors with Radeon Graphics, it may be possible that some users with an AMD Socket AM4 motherboard paired with a 2nd Generation Ryzen Desktop introduced in 2018, may experience an issue where the system does not boot up during initial setup.

VAIO Introduces the New VAIO S with VAIO TruePerformance and 8th Gen Core

As part of its continued support for the business user, today VAIO Corporation has introduced a new line of the VAIO S laptops equipped with the 8th Generation Intel Core Processor and VAIO TruePerformance, a technology designed to maintain higher performance for a longer period of time by increasing CPU power limits and more efficiently eliminating processor heat.

By applying VAIO TruePerformance, the 8th Generation Intel Core Processor demonstrates higher performance for both the CPU and graphics over the usual 8th Generation Core i7 Processor. In addition, the Core i5 Processor with VAIO TruePerformance has the effect of achieving higher performance than the usual 8th Generation Core i7 Processor.

Intel Processors to Have "In-silicon" Fixes to Meltdown and Spectre This Year

Intel, which benefited from the post-Q4 public-disclosure of Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities in its latest results, is hoping to mitigate its fallout on Q1-2018. The company, along with several other CPU designers, such as AMD and ARM, are firefighting the two devastating security vulnerabilities through OS kernel patches and CPU micro-code updates; which come at a slight expense of performance. In a bid to unnerve investors, company CEO Brian Krzanich announced that Intel is working on "in-silicon" fixes to Meltdown and Spectre.

An "in-silicon" fix would entail a major CPU micro-architecture design that's inherently immune to the two vulnerabilities and yet offers the benefits of modern branch-prediction and speculative execution. Krzanich says processors with in-silicon fixes to the two vulnerabilities will be released to market by the end of 2018.

AMD Confirms They are Affected by Spectre, too

The public disclosure on January 3rd that multiple research teams had discovered security issues related to how modern microprocessors handle speculative execution has brought to the forefront the constant vigilance needed to protect and secure data. These threats seek to circumvent the microprocessor architecture controls that preserve secure data.

At AMD, security is our top priority and we are continually working to ensure the safety of our users as new risks arise. As a part of that vigilance, I wanted to update the community on our actions to address the situation.

AMD Announces Official Price-Cuts for Ryzen Processors

Following its Ryzen 5 2400G and Ryzen 3 2200G socket AM4 APU announcement, AMD announced price cuts for its Ryzen family of processors, across the board. These are official price cuts, and not seasonal retailer discounts. The price cuts have been made in a bid to make its existing socket AM4 Ryzen processors more competitive against 8th generation Intel Core "Coffee Lake" processors.

Among the notable changes, are bringing the entire Ryzen 7-series lineup under the $350-mark, with the 1800X being priced at $349, the 1700X at $309, and the 1700 non-X at $299. These changes make the three competitive against the Core i7-8700K (which is scraping the $400-mark in many places), and the i7-8700 non-K (around $330). The Ryzen 5-series six-core parts also receive much-needed price-cuts to make them competitive against the Core i5 six-core SKUs, such as the i5-8600K and i5-8400. There are marginal changes in the Ryzen 3 series and Ryzen Threadripper series. All price cuts are tabled below.

AMD Updates on AMD Processor Security Status

There has been recent press coverage regarding a potential security issue related to modern microprocessors and speculative execution. Information security is a priority at AMD, and our security architects follow the technology ecosystem closely for new threats. It is important to understand how the speculative execution vulnerability described in the research relates to AMD products, but please keep in mind the following:
  • The research described was performed in a controlled, dedicated lab environment by a highly knowledgeable team with detailed, non-public information about the processors targeted.
  • The described threat has not been seen in the public domain.

Intel Announces New Pentium Silver and Celeron Processors

Intel delivers industry-leading innovations and creates new experiences across its portfolio products. Today, Intel unveils the all-new Intel Pentium Silver and Intel Celeron processors.

The new Intel Pentium Silver and Intel Celeron processors are based on Intel's architecture codenamed Gemini Lake, and are engineered for a great balance of performance and connectivity for the things people do every day - working on office documents and spreadsheets, browsing online, enjoying favorite shows and movies, and editing photos - with great battery life. And it can all be performed on a range of devices at an amazing value. Pentium Silver will deliver 58 percent faster productivity performance compared with a similar 4-year-old PC.

Newegg Black Friday Deals 2017

Black Friday is indisputably the best time of the year for any computer enthusiasts because we can get new toys for cheaper prices. Whether it be computer hardware or consumer electronics, Newegg has become the preferred place for many enthusiasts. We here at TechPowerUp have put together a list of the amazing deals currently available at the online retailer. The promotions are grouped into different categories for your viewing convenience. If you've been eyeing a particular piece of hardware or gadget, come take a look at our list. Who knows? Maybe you can save yourself a few hard-earned dollars. Don't forget to come back periodically to check for new deals!

AMD EPYC 7601 Processors Set Two New World Records on SPEC CPU Benchmarks

​AMD today announced that the new Hewlett Packard Enterprise ProLiant DL385 Gen10 server, powered by AMD EPYC processors set world records in both SPECrate2017_fp_base and SPECfp_rate2006. The secure and flexible 2P 2U HPE ProLiant DL385 Gen10 Server joins the HPE Cloudline CL3150 server in featuring AMD EPYC processors. With designs ranging from 8-core to 32-core, AMD EPYC delivers industry-leading memory bandwidth across the HPE line-up, with eight channels of memory and unprecedented support for integrated, high-speed I/O with 128 lanes of PCIe 3 on every EPYC processor.

"HPE is joining with AMD today to extend the world's most secure industry standard server portfolio to include the AMD EPYC processor. We now give customers another option to optimize performance and security for today's virtualized workloads," said Justin Hotard, vice president and GM, Volume Global Business Unit, HPE. "The HPE ProLiant DL385 featuring the AMD EPYC processor is the result of a long-standing technology engagement with AMD and a shared belief in continuing innovation."

ASUS BIOS Change-log Reveals New Ryzen Processors Incoming

ASUS recently released BIOS updates for its socket AM4 motherboards based on AMD X370 and B350 chipsets, which implement AGESA 1.0.0.7, which as you'll recall, paves the way for implementing support for upcoming processors, based on AMD's Vega-infused "Raven Ridge" APU silicon, and the 12 nm refreshed Ryzen "Pinnacle Ridge" silicon due for February 2018. ASUS published, and later withdrew the BIOS updates as the media got whiff of them.

The next parts for AMD's mainstream-desktop socket AM4 platform will be Ryzen "Raven Ridge" APUs, which let you finally use the HDMI and DisplayPorts on your motherboards. "Raven Ridge" combines a quad-core "Zen" CPU with a 640-stream processor integrated graphics based on the "Vega" graphics architecture. The "late-2017 or early-2018" time-line for these chips still appears to stand. RedGamingTech suggests that AMD's answer to Intel "Coffee Lake" processors, the 12 nm Ryzen "Pinnacle Ridge" processors, could be out by as early (or late) as February 2018. These chips could be previewed or teased at the company's events held on the sidelines of the 2018 International CES.

MINIX Creator Andrew Tanenbaum Sends Open Letter to Intel Over MINIX Drama

We recently reported about MINIX, the hidden Unix-like OS that Intel was secretly shipping in all of their modern processors. This came as a shock to most of us and to MINIX creator Andrew Tanenbaum as well. Although Andrew wasn't completely surprised by the news, since Intel approached him couple years back asking him to make a few changes to the MINIX system. He stated in the open letter that he wasn't looking for economic remuneration, but it would have been nice if Intel had told him about their plans to distribute his operating system in their processors.

Qualcomm Starts Shipping 48-Core Centriq 2400 Processors

At a press conference held today in San Jose, Calif., Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM), officially announced commercial shipment of the world's first and only 10 nanometer server processor series: the Qualcomm Centriq 2400 processor family. The Qualcomm Centriq 2400 processor family is the first high-performance Arm-based processor series designed to offer groundbreaking throughput performance for cloud workloads running in today's datacenters. Purpose built for cloud, the Qualcomm Centriq 2400 server processor family delivers exceptional performance-per-watt and performance-per dollar.

"Today's announcement is an important achievement and the culmination of more than four years of intense design, development and ecosystem enablement effort," said Anand Chandrasekher, senior vice president and general manager, Qualcomm Datacenter Technologies, Inc. "We have designed the most advanced Arm-based server processor in the world that delivers high performance coupled with the highest energy efficiency, enabling our customers to realize significant cost savings."

Intel Xeon Scalable Processors Supercharge Amazon Web Services

Intel Xeon Scalable processors are deployed by today's cloud service providers to deliver disruptive performance efficiency across a diverse range of cloud workloads. Today, Intel announced Amazon Web Services' (AWS) public cloud customers can now harness the workload-optimized performance that the Intel Xeon Scalable platform delivers in Amazon's latest cloud instance. Available now, the Amazon EC2 C5 instances are AWS' latest generation, most powerful compute-optimized instances with the best price-to-compute performance.

Intel Xeon Scalable processors are highly agile, high-performance compute engines that allow public cloud environments to seamlessly transition among general purpose compute, high-performance computing (HPC) and AI/deep learning compute. This agility provides public cloud users a wide range of options for their target workloads. Intel Xeon Scalable processors are uniquely architected for today's evolving cloud data center infrastructure, offering energy efficiency and system-level performance that average 1.65x higher performance over the prior generation Xeon processors.

Intel Core i7-8700K and i5-8400 SANDRA Benchmarks Surface

Ahead of their launch later this quarter, SiSoft SANDRA benchmarks of Intel 8th generation Core i7-8700K and Core i5-8400 six-core processors surfaced in benchmark databases, which were promptly compared to their predecessors by HotHardware. The results put to the test Intel's claims of "over 40 percent more performance" compared to the 7th generation Core processors, which the company made in its 8th Generation Core Launch Event presentation. A bulk of these performance increases are attributed to the increasing core-count over generation, which directly yields higher multi-threaded performance; while a small but significant portion of it is attributed to increases in single-threaded performance. Since the "Coffee Lake" micro-architecture is essentially a refresh of the "Skylake" architecture, single-threaded performance increases could be attributed to higher clock speeds.

The Core i7-8700K is the top-dog of the 8th generation Core mainstream-desktop processor family. This six-core chip was compared to the product it succeeds in Intel's MSDT product-stack, the quad-core Core i7-7700K. There is a 45 percent increase in performance, in the "processor arithmetic" test; and a 47 percent increase in the "processor multimedia" test. These two test-suites are multi-threaded, and hence benefit from the two added cores, which in turn add four additional logical CPUs, thanks to HyperThreading. "Processor cryptography" sees a 12 percent increase. The single-precision and double-precision "Scientific Analysis" tests, which again are multi-threaded, see 26 percent and 32 percent performance gains over the i7-7700K, respectively.

ASUS Announces ROG Zenith Extreme, ROG Strix X399-E, Prime X399-A X399 Mobos

There are two kinds of desktop CPU platforms. The mainstream tier runs from two cores up to eight, and it's great for gaming and general use. Its high-end sibling takes everything up a level with more cores, more memory channels, and more bandwidth for graphics and storage. A considerable upgrade in every regard, this high-end desktop platform appeals to power users, content creators, and prosumers who want to blur the line between desktop and workstation. AMD's Threadripper CPU is the latest addition to the desktop's heavyweight division, and it walks into the ring with an entourage of SocketTR4 motherboards in tow. This guide explains the ASUS and ROG family to help you pick the best X399 motherboard for your high-end desktop or gaming PC.

All of our X399 boards share core DNA that includes one-touch overclocking, refined cooling control, and improved RGB lighting. Yet they each have their own distinct flavor as well. The ROG Zenith Extreme brings Threadripper into the world of premium dream PCs with provisions for custom liquid cooling and 10G networking. With the Strix X399-E Gaming, hardcore gamers can build stylish rigs with power to spare for high-quality streaming. And then there's the Prime X399-A and its well-rounded foundation channeling the professional side of the platform's prodigious power. Which X399 motherboard should you buy for your build? Let's find out.

AMD's Bristol Ridge APUs Released for the AM4 Platform in Retail Channels

AMD's AM4 socket really is shaping up to be one of the company's most versatile to date. From true quad-core CPUS (just now available through Ryzen 3's launch through to veritable svelte behemoths 8-core, 16-thread CPUs, AM4 has something for every consumer. AMD is now taking that show further with the release of the Bristol Ridge family of APUs, which includes eight APUs and three CPUs. While pricing wasn't announced at time of writing, the top-priced part should fall below the $110 mark and bottom out at $50, so as not to collide with AMD's Ryzen 3 1200 (although these products aren't specifically overlapping anyway.)

AMD's new entry-level processors will hit a maximum of 65 W TDP, with the top spot being taken by the 2-module, 4-threads A12-9800, running at 3.8 GHz base and 4.2 GHz Turbo. This part holds a Radeon R7 GPU with 512 Stream Processors (GCN 1.3, the same as in the Fury GPUs) running at 800 MHz Base and 1108 MHz Turbo. There are three 35 W parts (denoted by a capital E after the model name.) One thing users should take into account is that the Bristol Ridge APUs deliver a maximum of 8x PCIe 3.0 lanes - thus rendering a multi-GPU solution unfeasible.

Intel Core i9-7960X 16-core/32-thread Processor Detailed, Benchmarked

Intel is preparing to tackle AMD's first Ryzen Threadripper parts with two Core "Skylake-X" HEDT socket LGA2066 processor launches in quick succession, over Q3-2017. The first one to come out will be the 12-core/24-thread Core i9-7920X; which will be closely followed by the 16-core/32-thread Core i9-7960X. The company will ultimately end 2017 with the 18-core/36-thread Core i9-7980XE. The i9-7920X, detailed in our older article, could either command a $200 premium over the $999 10-core/20-thread i9-7900X; or displace it to a slightly lower price-point (say, $800). The i9-7960X, however, could retain a premium price-point owing to performance leadership over the Ryzen Threadripper 1950X, if early benchmarks are to be believed.

The Core i9-7960X is endowed with 16 cores, HyperThreading enabling 32 threads, 1 MB of L2 cache per core, and 22 MB of shared L3 cache. It features the chip's full 44-lane PCI-Express gen 3.0 root complex, and a quad-channel DDR4 memory interface. The chip is expected to be clocked even lower than its 12-core sibling, with a nominal clock of a mere 2.50 GHz, and a yet unknown max Turbo Boost frequency. Put through Geekbench 4.1.0, the chip scored 33,672 points in the multi-threaded test, which is higher than the 27,000-ish scores we've been hearing of for the Threadripper 1950X; but a single-thread score of 5,238, which pales in comparison to that of the i7-7740X, due to the lower clock speeds, and a slightly older micro-architecture.

Intel Says AMD EPYC Processors "Glued-together" in Official Slide Deck

So, yes, Intel, I think the AMD engineers who have developed the Zen architecture from the ground-up would take issue with that. Especially when AMD's "Glued-together" dies actually wipe the proverbial floor with the blue company's chips in power-performance ratios, and deliver much better multi-threaded performance than Intel's offerings. Not bad for a "Glued-together" solution, I'd say.

Our resident W1zzard had this to say regarding AMD's latest CPUs: "The SenseMi power-management system seems to be working well in idle, with the 8-core machine drawing the same amount of power as Intel's quad-core "Kaby Lake" machine." And "At stock speeds, the energy-efficiency of Ryzen is truly phenomenal. Prime95 loads all cores and threads on the chip, and the Ryzen ends up with as much power draw as the quad-core Intel i7-7700K. The high power draw result of the overclocked chip is due to the increased voltage needed to achieve stable operation." And let's not forget this: This is epic. We're assuming you've sifted through our game-test results before seeing this page, and so you'll find that the gaming power draw of the 8-core Ryzen makes Intel's quad-core i7-7700K look bad. Power draw is as much as 30W lesser! Ryzen is hands down the most energy-efficient performance CPU AMD ever made, and easily outclasses Intel's 14 nm "leadership." Good show."

AMD Announces Ryzen PRO Desktop Processors

We have included the full AMD presentation deck at the end, so be sure to load the entire story.

Following the global excitement generated by the launch of its new EPYC family of server processors, AMD (NASDAQ: AMD) today added another tier to its enterprise CPU portfolio with the introduction of AMD Ryzen PRO desktop processors. Designed to meet the demands of today's compute-intensive workplace, Ryzen PRO desktop processors will bring reliability, security, and performance to enterprise desktops worldwide.

"Today marks another important step in our journey to bring innovation and excitement back to the PC industry: the launch of our Ryzen PRO desktop CPUs that will bring disruptive levels of performance to the premium commercial market," said Jim Anderson, senior vice president and general manager, Computing and Graphics Group, AMD. "Offering a significant leap in generational performance, leadership multi-threaded performance, and the first-ever 8-core,16-thread CPU for commercial-grade PCs, Ryzen PRO provides a portfolio of technology choices that meet the evolving needs of businesses today and tomorrow." Ryzen PRO Lineup Delivering breakthrough responsiveness for the most demanding enterprise-class applications and multi-tasking workflows, the 'Zen' core in every Ryzen PRO processor provides up to 52 percent improvement in compute capability over the previous generation, and the Ryzen 7 PRO 1700 offers up to 62 percent more multi-threaded performance than select competing solutions.

It's Coffee Lake Again: Intel Six-Core Processor Surfaces on Geekbench

After rearing its head on SiSoft Sandra, it seems that an engineering sample of Intel's upcoming Coffee Lake CPUs has appeared again - this time on Geekbench. Coffee Lake is supposed to be Intel's version of a core-count democratization. It is expected that the company will introduce six-core CPUs to their i7 line of processors (since apparently the i9 moniker is now limited to the company's HEDT solutions). This should bring about a reshuffle of Intel's CPU line-up, though it remains to be seen how the company will go about that way.

Moving on to the actual Geekbench scores, Intel's 6-core, 12-thread CPU delivers a 4,619 single-core score, and a 20,828 multi-core score. This is more or less inline with AMD's Ryzen 5 1600X 6-core, 12-thread processor. However, AMD's solution is clocked higher than this particular engineering sample was (3.6 GHz on the Ryzen 5 vs 3.2 GHz on the Intel Coffee Lake sample, a 400 MHz difference.) This probably means that finalized Intel silicon with come with higher clocks, and therefore, a more commanding performance.

AMD Unveils Record-Setting EPYC Datacenter Processor

Today, AMD, along with its global ecosystem of server customers and partners, launched the EPYC 7000 series of high-performance datacenter processors. With up to 32 high-performance "Zen" cores and an unparalleled feature set, the record-setting AMD EPYC design delivers greater performance across a full range of integer, floating point, memory bandwidth, and I/O benchmarks and workloads.

New Details On Intel's Upcoming 10-core Skylake-X i9 7900X Surface

SiSoft Sandra is one of the best (and more common) sources for details on upcoming, as-of-yet-unreleased hardware details and characteristics. Now, details on one of Intel's upcoming Skylake-X parts have surfaced, which gives us some details on what are likely final specifications, considering how close we are to X299's accelerated release.

The processor in the spotlight is one of Intel's 10-core processors, the Core i9 7900X (which is erroneously reported by the software as the Core i7 7900X), Intel's 10-core CPU. While initial reports pegged this CPU at as running at clock speeds of 3.30 GHz base and with 4.30 GHz Turbo Boost, it would seem Intel's release silicon will leverage much higher stock speeds, with the reported values on this SiSoft report being a staggering 4.0 GHz base, and 4.5 GHz Turbo Boost. These are extremely high clock speeds for a ten-core part, but all the other details about the Core i9 7900X check out: there are 14,080 KB (13.75 MB) of shared L3 cache, 1 MB L2 cache per core (for a total of 10 MB), as well as a 175 W TDP. This difference in clock speeds (especially when you compare it to Ryzen's much lower clock speeds) are probably an indicator of not only architectural differences between both designs, but a statement on Intel's fabrication process capabilities. And as an added bonus, check the motherboard that was used: a juicy, as-of-yet-unknown, X299 Gigabyte AORUS Gaming 7. Two details of this magnitude in a single screenshot? It's clearly a case of having your cake and eating it too.

Temperature Spikes Reported on Intel's Core i7-7700, i7-7700K Processors

Reports around the web (and posts on Intel's forums) speak in hushed, strained and horrified voices at how some users with Intel's Core i7-7700 processors are seeing strangely random temperature spikes on their processors, which prompts their cooling solutions to spin to the rescue. The report only mentions Intel's 7700 (non-K) processor; though it would seem this issue is more prone to happen with the K version of the processor, according to Intel's forums.

Apparently, some users are seeing temperature spikes that reach as high as as high as 90°C (out of a recommended 100ºC.) Some users even go as far as admitting to have replaced Intel's fabled TIM, and running the CPU under a water cooling solution, only to find those temperature spikes still happening - and their cooling solutions rev up in response. "My own chip suffers from it, (without any overclocking) which is quite an annoyance," a user wrote. "This despite a delid modification and a proper water loop, resulting in the fans ramping up and down very frequently, and the temperature appearing to frequently spike near the danger zone." Intel, naturally, deployed a sanitized response, saying that "the reported behavior of the 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700K Processor, showing momentary temperature changes from the idle temperature, is normal while completing a task (like opening a browser or an application or a program)." Business talk all the way, but to be honest, we don't even know if there is a real problem here, though there are so pretty interesting OCCT graphs being posted on the forum page. What do you say? Any of our users have seen similar issues?

AMD Releases Balanced Power Plan for Windows; Optimized for Ryzen Processors

In another Community Update from Robert Hallock, some more developments on the platform have been announced, after the last one's commitment to upcoming updates. AMD has done good on their promise for an optimized power profile for Windows systems that better leverages Ryzen's design and features.AMD's SenseMI technology allows the processor to fine-tune voltages and frequency on-the-fly, with a much higher granularity and lower latency than any software-based solution - such as Windows 10's power plans. These transitions between frequencies and voltages are governed by "P-States", which are frequency/voltage combinations requested by the operating system.

It so happens that Windows 10's Balanced power plan delays changes towards faster P-states - which bring increased frequency and voltage and hence, power consumption - so as to save more power. However, this means that there is an increased delay (latency) between the moment more processing power is required of the Ryzen processor and the moment the processor is allowed to change P-states to deliver it. Add to this the fact that Ryzen takes a significant performance hit with core-parking enabled, and Windows 10's balanced power plan attempts to park all logical processors beyond the first 10% whenever possible means that most of Ryzen's cores will have to be unparked before they can process any kind of workload - and this in itself incurs in an increased latency and, therefore, performance penalty.

Linksys Ships Entry Level New Tri-Band MU-MIMO Wi-Fi Router

Linksys, a leader in networking solutions for the home and business and the first to ship 100 million routers, today announced, it is shipping its new 802.11ac Tri-Band MU-MIMO Router. The Linksys Max Stream EA8300 is an AC2200 Tri-Band MU-MIMO router priced under $200, giving users MU-MIMO technology and up to double the performance of a dual-band router* for even faster speeds for downloading, streaming, gaming and surfing. Offering MU-MIMO (Multi-User, Multiple-Input, Multiple Output), the next generation Wi-Fi 802.11ac Wave 2 technology, helps improve overall performance and efficiency of a Wi-Fi network while providing dedicated bandwidth to MU-MIMO capable client devices as if they have their own dedicated router. Linksys offers the largest and broadest portfolio of MU-MIMO home Wi-Fi solutions on the market.

According to a white paper by ABI Research The Importance Of MU-MIMO In The Wi-Fi Ecosystem more than 84% of all wireless 5GHz chipsets will be MU-MIMO enabled by 2019. To keep up with the speeds and performance of client devices coming to market such as 4K TVs, laptops, smart phones, tablets and game consoles, consumers will want to make sure they have the latest Wi-Fi router that can support all the latest devices that have come into the home.
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