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AMD Responds to Lack of Ryzen Mobile Driver Updates, Claims OEMs are the Issue

AMD's Ryzen Notebook lineup seems to be very important to company, at least when going by how often it gets mentioned in the AMD financial analyst calls. That's why it's even more surprising that the driver situation for these products has been nothing but terrible. Some Ryzen Raven Ridge based notebooks haven't seen a single driver update since their release over a year ago, which is much worse than on any other notebook platform.

Users complained about this on Reddit, and AMD responded through an official account that the issue is that "drivers are typically tailored for specific OEM platforms", and that "releasing generic APU graphics drivers across all AMD Ryzen mobile processor-based mobile systems could result in less-than-ideal user experiences". AMD also made it clear that they will be working with OEMs to increase the release frequency of Ryzen Mobile graphics drivers, targeting two releases per-year in 2019.
To me this explanation sounds like bs.

AMD 8-core Ryzen APU to Power Sony Playstation 5, Says the Rumor Mill

Sony's announcement of the Playstation team skipping E3 2019 took everyone by surprise aside from a few on Reddit who had paid attention to a thread created the day before. Reddit user RuthenicCookie seemed to know a lot more about Sony's plans for their popular game console for the next few years, as well as game titles supporting this current console generation and the next. Amidst a lot of the tasty rumor bits that should interest console gamers, something more relevant to us directly is the mention of the Playstation 5 to continue using AMD for processing power.

This is a logical move to just about everyone familiar with the industry, and Sony needed to up the CPU horsepower in particular to compete with the XBOX One X and offer a true 4K/60 FPS solution for gaming without framerate drops galore. As such, said redditor shared information saying that the current plans involve an 8-core Ryzen-based processor and an estimated console price point of $500. Sony may well share a teaser about the console next year, with retail availability expected in the holiday season 2020 (two years from now, thus). As such, developer kits are likely already ready meaning the specs are finalized as well. This may mean we will see either the first or second gen Ryzen APUs, and not Ryzen 2 as many may have hoped. No word yet on what Microsoft is cooking in their side of the kitchen, but incremental console updates means we may see a Ryzen 2-powered console sooner than later as well.

ASUS ROG Strix B450-E Gaming Starts Selling

With multi-GPU on the decline, AMD Ryzen platform buyers are drawn to the mid-range AMD B450 chipset-based motherboards as the chipset still offers CPU overclocking features not available on its Intel counterpart, the B360 Express, helping buyers save money over X470-based products. Motherboard vendors, seeing a potential for enthusiasts seeking out B450, have each launched quasi-premium motherboards based on the chipset, such as the GIGABYTE Aorus B450 Pro, MSI B450 Gaming Pro Carbon, and ASUS ROG Strix B450-F Gaming. ASUS is taking this concept further with the better-endowed new ROG Strix B450-E Gaming. This product is interesting, because ASUS hasn't yet launched a Strix-E SKU based on the AMD X470. The company included a mention of the product in its launch reveal for its AMD B450 motherboard series, and is beginning to roll the product out.

The ASUS ROG Strix B450-E Gaming features a more premium CPU VRM than even the Strix X470-F, with a "12-phase" (likely blind-doubled 8-phase CPU with either blind-doubled 4-phase vSOC or 2+1+1), compared to the B450-F, with its 8-phase (4 CPU + 4 SOC) design. The component quality is a step up from the Strix B450-F, and so are the VRM heatsinks. ASUS added metal reinforcement for two of the board's three PCI-Express x16 slots, although the second and third slots are x4. You also get two M.2-2280 slots, one of which comes with SSD heatsink. Intel i211-AT wired 1 GbE and Intel 9260 802.11ac + Bluetooth 5 WLAN, take care of networking. The onboard audio solution is unchanged from the Strix B450-F. The ROG Strix B450-E Gaming is priced around 149.99€.

TechPowerUp Releases GPU-Z 2.15.0, Features Hardware Giveaway in Partnership with PowerColor!

TechPowerUp today released the latest version, 2.15.0, of GPU-Z, the popular graphics subsystem information and diagnostic utility. This brings along with it support for AMD's Radeon RX 590 GPU, two reviews of which can be seen here and here for those interested. In addition, GPU-Z 2.15.0 adds support for Intel Whiskey Lake, UHD Graphics 617, and NVIDIA Tesla V100-SXM2-32GB along with minor bug fixes including detection of certain Quadro cards as fake, as well as an updated Vega 20 release date.

While this alone is plenty to merit an update, there is a special giveaway added to this version. Indeed, to the left of the "Close" button at the bottom is a temporary button that opens up a giveaway window listing a collaboration with PowerColor enabling users to potentially win the following (one per winner):
  • 2x PowerColor Radeon RX 590 Red Devil
  • 2x AMD Ryzen 5 2600X
  • 15x $30 Steam Wallet Coupon
The terms and conditions can be found in GPU-Z again, but know that the contest runs through Dec 6, 2018 and you will have to enter via the form in the utility itself. The full change log can be found in the download link seen below, and do let us know what you feel about integrating our giveaways with our utilities in the comments section below.

DOWNLOAD: TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.15.0

Intel Cutting Retail Processor Supply for Holiday 2018

Prices of retail packages of Intel Core desktop processors could continue to rise over Q4-2018, as the company has reportedly cut their supply, in favor of tray/reel shipments to OEMs. This could mean DIY favorites such as the Core i5-8400, the i5-8600K, i5-9600K, or even Core i7 models such as the i7-8700K, i7-9700K, and the flagship i9-9900K could be severely in short supply, or heavily marked up wherever available. Intel recently devised a strategy to increase its Core processor volumes by pumping in an additional $1 billion to its usually-$15 billion capital expenditure, to fire up small-scale manufacturing facilities around the world, to augment its bigger fabs located in Malaysia and Vietnam.

Sites like Mexico, Israel, and Ireland are beneficiaries of this move, and are being expanded. Much of Intel's efforts appear to be focused on making sure notebook and pre-built PC manufacturers aren't starved of processor inventory. The DIY retail channel, which consists of boxed processors, will foot the bill for this move. A good example of understocked retail channel would be the $499 Core i9-9900K processor being sold for upwards of $900 in some online stores. AMD is in an enviable position to fill the void, comments PCGamesN. Prices of its Ryzen desktop processor PIBs are either flat, or marginally cut; and socket AM4 motherboards are generally cheaper than LGA1151 ones.

AMD Zen 2 "Rome" MCM Pictured Up Close

Here is the clearest picture of AMD "Rome," codename for the company's next-generation EPYC socket SP3r2 processor, which is a multi-chip module of 9 chiplets (up from four). While first-generation EPYC MCMs (and Ryzen Threadripper) were essentially "4P-on-a-stick," the new "Rome" MCM takes the concept further, by introducing a new centralized uncore component called the I/O die. Up to eight 7 nm "Zen 2" CPU dies surround this large 14 nm die, and connect to it via substrate, using InfinityFabric, without needing a silicon interposer. Each CPU chiplet features 8 cores, and hence we have 64 cores in total.

The CPU dies themselves are significantly smaller than current-generation "Zeppelin" dies, although looking at their size, we're not sure if they're packing disabled integrated memory controllers or PCIe roots anymore. While the transition to 7 nm can be expected to significantly reduce die size, groups of two dies appear to be making up the die-area of a single "Zeppelin." It's possible that the CPU chiplets in "Rome" physically lack an integrated northbridge and southbridge, and only feature a broad InfinityFabric interface. The I/O die handles memory, PCIe, and southbridge functions, featuring an 8-channel DDR4 memory interface that's as monolithic as Intel's implementations, a PCI-Express gen 4.0 root-complex, and other I/O.

AMD Expands 2nd Generation Ryzen Threadripper Desktop Processor Line-up, Powering Ultimate Computing Experiences, Available Today From $649

[Editor's Note: Our review of the Ryzen Threadripper 2920X is out already, and that of the Ryzen Threadripper 2970WX will follow soon after.]

Today, AMD announced availability of two additional 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper processor models, 2970WX with 24 cores and 48 threads and the Ryzen Threadripper 2920X with 12 cores and 24 threads. The Ryzen Threadripper WX series commands class-leading core counts, purpose-built for prosumers focused on raw computational power for the heaviest workloads. In turn, Ryzen Threadripper X series provides enthusiasts, gamers, and streamers high performance with a beautiful and smooth gaming experience based on higher base and boost processor clock speeds than the previous generation.

"The dramatic transformation in the HEDT and overall PC market is driven by AMD leadership and innovation, and the AMD Ryzen Threadripper family is central to this global excitement," said Saeid Moshkelani, senior vice president and general manager, Client Compute, AMD. "We are expanding this excitement while also ensuring the HEDT market remains accessible to a broader range of creators and gamers with two new Threadripper processors that start at $649."

AMD Share Price Falls ~28% via Weak GPU Sales; Revenue Share from GPUs Only 30%

Following the release of the Q3 financial results by AMD, the stock market was quick to respond to less-than-expected operating income and market share numbers with a ~9.2% drop in share price before the markets closed. This was then followed by fervent after-hours trading resulting an even bigger drop to a share price of $17.88 at the time of this post, compared to the starting value of $25.04 earlier today. The small hike and drop after-hours also indicates some enterprising parties made use of the lower share values to their profit.

AMD held a teleconference for their investors to go along with the report, and attempted to better explain what was going on. In particular, they attribute the decreased client GPU sales to a big decrease in the blockchain GPU sales market (read GPU mining) relative to the first half of 2018. The lack of competing products to take on NVIDIA Pascal-, and then Turing-based, GPU solutions also does not help. As it stands, AMD shared news that GPUs now contribute to only ~30% of their revenue with the other 70% coming from the Ryzen-based processor division instead. They hinted strongly at new products coming from both segments, including an on-track path for a 7 nm datacenter GPU later this year and new Ryzen+Vega-powered notebooks, but it appears that more needs to be done to appease their investors at this point.

Intel 9th Gen LGA1151 Processors Support Up to 128GB of Memory

Intel's 6-core "Coffee Lake" die was essentially a "Kaby Lake" die with two extra cores, and no physical changes to other components, such as iGPU or uncore. With its new 8-core "Coffee Lake" Refresh silicon, Intel has turned its attention to not just increasing the core-count, but also improving the processor's integrated memory controller, in addition to hardware fixes to certain security vulnerabilities. The 128-bit wide (dual-channel) integrated memory controller now supports up to 128 GB of memory. Intel's current DDR4-capable mainstream desktop processors only support up to 64 GB, as do rival AMD's Ryzen socket AM4 processors.

Support for up to 128 GB explains the emergence of off-spec memory standards such as ASUS' Double Capacity (DC) DIMMs. Samsung is ready with a JEDEC-compliant 32 GB dual-rank UDIMM memory module for client platforms. Introduction of 32 GB UDIMMs also comes amidst reports of DRAM pricing cool-off through 2019, which could make 32 GB dual-channel memory kits consisting of two 16 GB UDIMMs more affordable. The increase in maximum memory amount could also indicate Intel's seriousness to introduce 3D Xpoint-based Optane Persistent Memory modules as alternatives to DRAM-based main memory, with higher capacities compensating for worse latencies and data-rates compared to DRAM.

DRAM Calculator for Ryzen v1.4.0 by 1usmus Released: Memory Settings Made Easy

Ukrainian PC enthusiast and software developer 1usmus today released DRAM Calculator for Ryzen version 1.4.0. This utility was formerly known as "Ryzen DRAM Calculator," which has since been voluntarily renamed by the author in the interest of avoiding any future trademark conflict with AMD, or giving users the impression that the software has been made by AMD. The change in name doesn't change the fact this could be your go-to app to figure out the best memory settings for your AMD Ryzen-powered machine.

PC enthusiasts usually only remember 4 or 5 DRAM timing settings besides DRAM clock and voltage, letting the motherboard BIOS figure out the rest of the stable values, which could often be looser than needed. DRAM Calculator for Ryzen figures out nearly every under-the-hood timing, voltage, clock-speed, and other setting needed to make the most out of your memory overclock. You can also make the app work out "safe," "stable," and "extreme" variations of its own calculations. Version 1.4.0 isn't just a name-change for the application. It introduces a large number of critical updates to the app that improve accuracy and functionality.

DOWNLOAD: DRAM Calculator for Ryzen v1.4.0
The change-log follows.

AMD Introduces Dynamic Local Mode for Threadripper: up to 47% Performance Gain

AMD has made a blog post describing an upcoming feature for their Threadripper processors called "Dynamic Local Mode", which should help a lot with gaming performance on AMD's latest flagship CPUs.
Threadripper uses four dies in a multi-chip package, of which only two have a direct access path to the memory modules. The other two dies have to rely on Infinity Fabric for all their memory accesses, which comes with a significant latency hit. Many compute-heavy applications can run their workloads in the CPU cache, or require only very little memory access; these are not affected. Other applications, especially games, spread their workload over multiple cores, some of which end up with higher memory latency than expected, which results in a suboptimal performance.

Thermaltake Intros Pacific W6 CPU Block for Ryzen Threadripper

Thermaltake introduced the Pacific W6, a CPU water block for AMD socket TR4, suitable for Ryzen Threadripper processors, including the WX-series. The block offers full coverage of the socket TR4 processor integrated heatspreader, and the micro-fin lattice that dissipates heat to the coolant covers all four corners of the base where you'd expect the four dies of the MCM to be.

The primary material is nickel-plated copper with a mirror finish at the base, while the top is acrylic with a silicone periphery that diffuses RGB LEDs. Measuring 85 mm x 117 mm x 26.2 mm (WxDxH, without fittings), the Pacific W6 weighs about 400 g. It's capable of handling thermal loads of up to 250W, and supports standard G 1/4 fittings. The company didn't reveal pricing.

CRYORIG Announces New sTR4 Upgrade Clip Kit

Coinciding with the release of 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper CPUs, CRYORIG is releasing its sTR4 Upgrade Kit for its high-end air coolers. The sTR4 Upgrade Kit is compatible with the CRYORIG R1 series, C1 series, H5 series and H7 Quad Lumi. With the new sTR4 Upgrade Kit users are able to use their favorite CRYORIG air cooling solutions with both 1st Gen and 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper CPUs. *Coolers with less than 4 heatpipes are not suggested, as well as the ultra-compact C7 series coolers.

Intel HEDT Platform to be Forked into Z399 and X599

Intel could very soon fork its high-end desktop platform into two, with the introduction of the new Z399 socket LGA2066 chipset later this quarter; and the fabled X599 chipset powering LGA3647 processors. The move is probably triggered by AMD's introduction of new 24-core and 32-core Ryzen Threadripper processors that wipe out competitiveness of its existing "Basin Falls" X299 platform. The X599 could essentially be a C629 with the addition of some client-segment features (and the subtraction of some enterprise-segment ones), whereas the Z399 is a whole different beast.

With the introduction X599 and LGA3647, Intel could restore competitiveness at the >$1,500 market segment with new 24-core, 26-core, and 28-core "Skylake-X" XCC (extended/extreme core count) processors; whereas the introduction of Z399 could be necessitated with a that of a new 22-core chip for the LGA2066 socket, from which Intel can carve out new 20-core and 22-core SKUs. Existing Skylake-X LCC and HCC chips could be forwards-compatible with Z399, and X299 motherboards could still be eligible for supporting new 20-core and 22-core processors via BIOS updates. The Z399 could introduce a handful of new client-segment features Intel is introducing with the Z390.

ASUS Launches its ROG Ryujin Line of AIO Liquid CPU Coolers for AMD TR4

ASUS today launched the Republic of Gamers (ROG) Ryujin line of all-in-one liquid CPU coolers for AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors. Positioned above the ROG Ryuo series, which opened to pre-orders earlier this month, the Ryujin was first showcased at the 2018 Computex. These coolers are characterized by a somewhat square pump-block design that resembles a that of a chipset heatsink; but is embedded with a 1.77-inch color OLED display that shows an animated ROG logo by default, but can be reprogrammed to show just about anything, such as clan logos, live CPU temperature/load monitoring, etc. Another innovation that sets the Ryujin pump-block apart from every other Asetek cooler out there, is a tiny lateral-blower fan embedded into the block, which ASUS claims can bring down CPU VRM and M.2 SSD temperatures by up to 20°C.

The Ryujin series comes in two variants based on radiator size, the Ryujin 240 (120 mm x 240 mm radiator), and Ryujin 360 (120 mm x 360 mm radiator). These are 27 mm-thick aluminium radiators, which are ventilated by matte-black Noctua IndustrialPPC 120 mm PWM fans that are part of the package. These fans each spin between 450 to 2,000 RPM, pushing up to 121.8 CFM of air, with noise output up to 31 dBA. As we mentioned earlier, the product pages for both models mentions that the coolers only support AMD socket TR4, with full coverage for the AMD Ryzen Threadripper integrated heatspreader. This could help ASUS command a slightly high price, given that it's catering only to the market that can afford HEDT processors.

AMD Readying a 10-core AM4 Processor to Thwart Core i9-9900K?

To sustain its meteoric rise at the stock markets, AMD needs to keep investors convinced it has a competitive edge over Intel, even if it means investing heavily on short-term roadmap changes. According to an Elchapuzas Informatico article, AMD could be working on a new 10-core/20-thread processor for the AM4 platform, to compete with the upcoming Core i9-9900K 8-core/16-thread processor from Intel. The said processor is being labeled "Ryzen 7 2800X" and plastered over CineBench nT screenshots, where due to the sheer weight of its 10 cores, it tops the nT test in comparison to Intel's mainstream-desktop processors, including the 2P Xeon X5650 12-core/24-thread.

The Forbes article that cites the Elchapuzas Informatico, however, is skeptical that AMD could make such a short-sighted product investment. It believes that development of a 10-core die on existing "Zen+" architecture could warrant a massive redesign of the CCX (Zen Compute Complex), and AMD would only get an opportunity to do so when working on "Zen 2," which AMD still expects to debut by late-2018 on its EPYC product line. We, however, don't discount the possibility of a 10-core "Zen+" silicon just yet. GlobalFoundries, AMD's principal foundry partner for CPUs, has given up on 7 nm, making the company fall back to TSMC to meet its 7 nm roadmap commitments. TSMC already has a long list of clientele for 7 nm, including high-volume contracts from Apple, Qualcomm, and NVIDIA. This could force AMD to bolster its existing lineup as a contingency for delays in 7 nm volume production.

AMD Ryzen Embedded V1000 Processor to Power SMACH Z Handheld Gaming PC

Remember the SMACH Z? Me neither. It was a long attempt in the making, with multiple Kickstarter campaigns that finally resulted in an actual product coming to market later this year. The SMACH Z is a handheld gaming PC with an x86 processor, that was originally supposed to use a 5" 720p screen powered off an AMD G-series SoC (System on a Chip). It was then updated to use an AMD Merlin Falcon (Excavator) R-Series RX-421BD clocked at 2.1 GHz SoC with an integrated Radeon R7 series GPU at 800 MHz to run a 6" 1080p display, that was in turn embedded in a handheld gaming console, effectively making it a portable gaming PC. Perhaps it was a good thing that the product took its time, since they have now decided to use updated internals for the final product- once more from AMD- in the form of the Ryzen Embedded V1605B SoC with AMD Radeon Vega 8 graphics.

eBOM reports that AMD has announced it will be showcasing the SMACH Z in their booth presence at the Tokyo Game Show which commences later this week. This marks yet another gaming platform that AMD will be powering, although it is less powerful than the other ones. The SMACH Z is available for pre-order in three different variants (Z, Z Pro, and Z Ultra) which have different starting configurations, but can be customized as with most pre-built PCs. All variants can run off the Linux-based SMACH OS or Windows 10, retain the 6" 1080p touch screen, support up to 16 GB of dual channel DDR4 memory and 256 GB of solid state storage, and have an optional camera as well. Prices begin at $699 and go up to $1199, with a 10% discount for pre-order for the console expected to be available December, 2018. For those interested, there are some preliminary benchmarks released by SMACH from earlier this year.

More Clarity on 9th Gen Core Processor Pricing Emerges

Intel is debuting its first wave of 9th generation Core desktop processors with three models later this year - the 6-core/6-thread Core i5-9600K, the 8-core/8-thread Core i7-9700K, and the 8-core/16-thread Core i9-9900K. We've been very curious about how the entry of the Core i9 extension to the mainstream-desktop LGA1151 platform would affect pricing of the Core i5 and Core i7 K-series SKUs, especially given that the i7-9700K is the first Core i7 SKU in a decade to lack HyperThreading. An updated catalog by a major Singapore-based PC components distributor adds more clarity.

Singapore-based PC component distributor BizGram, in its latest catalog, disclosed the all-inclusive retail prices of the three new processors. As Redditor Dylan522p suggests, if you do the SGD-USD conversion and subtract all taxes, you get ominous-looking SEP prices for the three. Intel could price the Core i5-9600K at USD $249.99. The Core i7-9700K could be priced at $349.99. The flagship Core i9-9900K could go for $449.99. These seem like highly plausible pre-tax launch prices for the three chips, and fit into the competitive landscape.

First Intel Core i7-9700K Review Surfaces

Spanish language tech publication El Chapuzas Informático published the first almost-complete review of Intel Core i7-9700K processor. Without Intel disclosing the pricing of this chip, the review doesn't include price/performance numbers or a conclusion that explores the competitive landscape. You still get a sumptuous serving of 14 tests, from which 9 are some of the latest AAA games.

The bottom-line is that the i7-9700K locks horns with the Ryzen 7 2700X in most multi-threaded tests except Cinebench nT; and owing to its high clock speeds, it will end up as the fastest gaming processor around the $350-400 mark. Interestingly, the i7-9700K isn't 33% faster than the i7-8700K despite 33% more cores, because HyperThreading is sorely missed. The distinction could be reserved for the Core i9-9900K, although samples of that chip are far too rare.
More graphs follow.

Intel 14nm Processors Face Shortages

Intel's 8th generation Core desktop processors based on the company's 14 nm node are facing shortages in the market, according to a Tom's Hardware report. Tracking prices and availability of popular 8th generation Core SKUs such as the i5-8400, i5-8600K, and i7-8700K, the report notes that retailers are heavily marking up these SKUs above their SEP, and many of whom are running out of stock often. This may not be attributed to heavy demand.

A possible explanation for these shortages could be Intel allocating volumes from the same 14 nm++ node for its upcoming 9th generation Core processors, which debut with three SKUs - i5-9600K, i7-9700K, and i9-9900K. Intel probably wants to launch the three chips not just at competitive prices, but also good enough volumes to win the 2018 Holiday season, and repair its competitiveness damaged by AMD 2nd generation Ryzen over the past couple of quarters.

AMD Fast-tracks 7nm "Navi" GPU to Late-2018 Alongside "Zen 2" CPU

AMD is unique in the world of computing as the only company with both high-performance CPU and GPU products. For the past several years we have been executing our multi-generational leadership product and architectural roadmap. Just in the last 18 months, we successfully introduced and ramped our strongest set of products in more than a decade and our business has grown dramatically as we gained market share across the PC, gaming and datacenter markets.

The industry is at a significant inflection point as the pace of Moore's Law slows while the demand for computing and graphics performance continues to grow. This trend is fueling significant shifts throughout the industry and creating new opportunities for companies that can successfully bring together architectural, packaging, system and software innovations with leading-edge process technologies. That is why at AMD we have invested heavily in our architecture and product roadmaps, while also making the strategic decision to bet big on the 7nm process node. While it is still too early to provide more details on the architectural and product advances we have in store with our next wave of products, it is the right time to provide more detail on the flexible foundry sourcing strategy we put in place several years ago.

Intel Core i9-9900K De-lidded, Soldered IHS Confirmed

With its 9th generation Core processors, Intel is re-introducing soldered IHS (integrated heatspreaders), at least in its top two premium models, the Core i9-9900K, and the Core i7-9700K. Intel refers to this feature as STIM (soldered thermal interface material). AMD implements soldered IHS across its Ryzen "Summit Ridge," "Pinnacle Ridge," and Threadripper families. XFastest took apart an i9-9900K to confirm that Intel is indeed using solder. Soldered IHS is generally preferred for better heat-transfer characteristics, compared to fluid TIMs. The use of fluid TIMs prompts some serious enthusiasts to even "de-lid" (run their processors without the IHS).

The 8-core "Whiskey Lake-S" die could be around 178 mm² in area, with the addition of two more cores, and 4.5 MB more cache (L2 + L3), over its predecessor. You'll recall that the 6-core "Coffee Lake" die measures 150 mm², a 25 mm² gain over the 4-core "Kaby Lake" die. We aren't expecting Intel to change the iGPU or uncore components. Intel is building these dies on the same 14 nm++ silicon fabrication node as "Coffee Lake," with the only architectural difference being silicon-level hardening against certain security vulnerabilities.

ASRock Intros X370 Pro BTC+ Motherboard

Cryptocurrency mining rig motherboards have, until now, mostly been based on the Intel platform because Intel chipsets put out more PCIe lanes than AMD ones, and because Intel's sub-$100 Pentium/Celeron chips don't have narrower PCIe connectivity from the CPU. ASRock apparently has a lot of unsold AMD X370 chipset inventory, and with the possible introduction of sub-$100 Ryzen chips that have 28 PCIe lanes from the CPU, a use-case has emerged for a mining motherboard based on this platform. We hence have the X370 Pro BTC+. The board features an AM4 socket, with out of the box support for "Pinnacle Ridge" processors. The socket is wired to just one DDR4 DIMM slot, but all eight PCI-Express 3.0 x16 slots.

The topmost x16 slot runs at electrical gen 3.0 x4, while the remaining seven slots are gen 3.0 x1, taking advantage of PCIe segmentation of the X370 platform. The board draws power from three 24-pin ATX, 8+4 pin EPS, and a number of Molex outputs, although most of these power connectors are optional. A point to note here is that the D-sub/HDMI display outputs only work if an A-series "Bristol Ridge" or Ryzen "Raven Ridge" APU is used (which have fewer PCIe lanes), so you're bound to take display output from one of the 8 graphics cards. A 1 GbE interface and two USB 3.0 ports make for the rest of it.

AMD Launches World's Most Powerful Desktop Processor: 2nd Generation Threadripper

AMD today announced the availability of world's most powerful desktop processor, the 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper 2990WX processor with 32 cores and 64 threads. Designed to power the ultimate computing experiences, 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors are built using 12 nm "Zen+" x86 processor architecture and offer the most threads on any desktop processor with the flagship model delivering up to 53% greater performance than the competition's flagship model. Second Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors support the most I/O, and are compatible with existing AMD X399 chipset motherboards via a simple BIOS update, offering builders a broad choice for designing the ultimate high-end desktop or workstation PC.

"We created Ryzen Threadripper processors because we saw an opportunity to deliver unheard-of levels of multithreaded computing for the demanding needs of creators, gamers, and PC enthusiasts in the HEDT market," said Jim Anderson, senior vice president and general manager, Computing and Graphics Business Group, AMD. "With the 2nd Gen processor family we took that challenge to a whole new level - delivering the biggest, most powerful desktop processor the world has ever seen."

Cooler Master Announces the Wraith Ripper for 2nd Generation Threadripper

Cooler Master, a global leader in computer hardware and peripherals manufacturing, announces the Wraith Ripper, the official air cooler for the 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper desktop processor, as part of an exclusive partnership with AMD. The Wraith Ripper is designed, specifically, to keep the 2nd Gen AMD Ryzen Threadripper cool under the most strenuous conditions and manage up to 250W TDP.
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