By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)
Well this came out of nowhere. This week at Computer, AMD held a press conference to announce the second generation Ryzen 7 Threadripper computer processor. And with twice the threads as the first generation, it could be ideal for 8K and virtual reality post production workstations.
The technorati were expecting a modest performance boost from version 2 of the Ryzen 7, maybe up to 16 cores and a 4GHz processor speed. But instead, AMD showed off 24 and 32 core Threadrippers, which offers double the thread count to spread the workload out for high end processing like video editing in 8K, virtual reality, and gaming.
According to reports, the new Ryzen 7 is based on AMDs EPYC server, which uses four dies of eight and six cores a piece. The EPYC architecture has been consumerized to provide a wider chipset and existing DDR5 RAM. Anyone looking to upgrade will have to update their BIOS on their motherboard to support the new Ryzen 7 architecture, and they can expect an increase in how much power consumption is required to run the CPU. ON the order of 250W before you do anything else. That means upgrading your existing power supply would likely be a good idea as well.
The thing is that for awhile, Moore’s law showed us that a processor will get faster exponentially every 18 months, but since processors hit over 3 GHz in power, they’ve reached the physical barrier of what a computer can do with that speed. As such, processor makers like AMD and Intel have been boosting cores to help juggle the load and make the computer appear to run faster.
It may seem to run faster, and it is, but not powerfully so. It’s more like having a few extra hands while juggling. It helps prevent drops, but you’re not juggling the balls faster at all. The increased activity also increases heat generation, which can cause a computer to have reliability issues.
AMD isn’t talking benchmarks at this point, so there’s no word on how much faster the CPU will make your workflow, but it has been known for quite some time, that the more cores your computer has, the slower the performance as it spreads out all that data processing.
Additionally, if your software hasn’t been updated to take advantage of increased cores, most of that processor power will simply go unused, while many apps will work faster with fewer cores due to being streamlined for it.
But at the end of the day, this is all about the evolution of the science of CPUs. The capability has to be there before the support in software emerges. In time, apps like non linear editors and virtual reality tools will be able to use the additional cores to multitask, making rendering faster while doing changes in real time. And it was only two years ago when an 8 core rig was top of the line and worth thousands more. Now were four times that.
There’s no word on pricing just yet, but the conventional wisdom is suggesting aa price starting at $1750-2700. So in reality, the Threadripper’s biggest impact, will likely be on driving Intel’s high end processors down in price. Availability will be in the fall.
Clearly, Moore’s Law has found it’s second wind.
Hat Tip – RSN