Subject: General Tech | April 16, 2019 - 02:11 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: ryzen embedded, ryzen, R1606G, R1505G, r1000, playstation 5, atari, amd, 7nm
You might not be immediately excited by a new embedded processor, after all you can't upgrade something soldered permanently onto the motherboard, but if the AtariVCS interests you in the least you should pay attention.
One of those chips will be powering that system, and as they are capable of powering three 4K displays at up to 60 FPS, you should expect some impressive visuals from that console when it finally arrrives. For general media, these chips support H.265 Encode/Decode(10b) and VP9 decode3 capabilities so streaming should be impressive as well.
In other usage scenarios, the ability to use a 10Gb Ethernet connection and integral security features to protect the boot environment and memory will be attractive to those looking to upgrade their products which would use these embedded processors. Your next flight to Vegas might feature the new chips on the plane as well as in the one armed bandits. The R1000 series will also support 64-bit DDR4, 8 PCIe lanes, NVMe support and up to four USB 3.1 Gen 2 interconnects (pdf).
"The new SoC will be available this quarter to ODMs and OEMs worldwide and is already supported by numerous hardware and software companies including Advantech, ASRock, DFI, iBase, Netronome, Stratacache and many others. The Ryzen Embedded R1000 SoC will also power the upcoming Atari VCS game system."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- AMD could mark its 50th anniversary with a special Ryzen 7 chip @ The Inquirer
- TicTocTrack Smartwatch Flaws Can Be Abused To Track Kids @ Slashdot
- Intel reveals 8th-gen Core vPro chips aimed at road-warrior laptops @ The Inquirer
- Google Fiber experiment ends with Choc Factory paying Louisville $3.8m to clean up its mess @ The Register
- Mozilla Wants Apple To Change Users' iPhone Advertiser ID Every Month @ Slashdot
- Rooting Your Ride: Jailbreaking A Subaru QNX @ Hackaday
- Organic transistors reach new heights @ Physics World
Subject: General Tech | April 3, 2019 - 01:31 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: amd, Zen 2, x570, rome, navi, 7nm
This promises to be an interesting year for Intel and AMD, perhaps more so for the latter according to the information DigiTimes have put together. We still expect Zen 2 and the X570 chipset to be shown off at Computex 2019, for Rome to rise a few months later and Navi to pop up some time in Q3; all on a process Intel has yet to hit.
Intel's chip shortages have led to HP and Lenovo placing large orders of mobile CPUs from AMD for the first time in quite a while and ASUS is now using them in some lines of gaming laptops. You will also find AMD powered Chromebooks from Acer and HP available for purchase. In the server room, EPYC has taken AMD's market share from 1% Q4 2017 to 3.2% in Q4 2018, with more gains expected in the Q1 2019, which just wrapped up.
The inclusion of PCIe 4.0 on the X570 chipset has attracted motherboard manufacturers and they have increased their orders from AMD, who developed the chipset in house. DigiTimes expects ASMedia to start producing some of the lower cost PCIe 4.0 versions by the end of the year with a chance they will immediately release mainstream X570s with the current generation of PCIe.
Dr. Lisa Su's pre-Computex press conference on May 27 is bound to be very interesting.
"A ramp-up in CPU and GPU shipments for notebooks, motherboards and servers will buoy significantly AMD's sales performance in the second half of 2019, according to sources at PC makers."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- AMD will show off 3rd-gen Ryzen CPUs and Navi at Computex 2019 @ The Inquirer
- TSMC sees 7nm chip orders pick-up @ DigiTimes
- Finally, after years of dunking on Magic Leap, El Reg's Kieren tries out the techno hype goggles. And the verdict... @ The Register
- Facebook is asking new users to hand over their email password @ The Inquirer
- Microsoft kills off the book store you probably didn’t know it had @ Ars Technica
- A Suite of Digital Cryptography Tools, Released Today, Has Been Mathematically Proven To Be Completely Secure and Free of Bugs @ Slashdot
- FYI: You could make Tesla's Autopilot swerve into traffic with a few stickers on the road @ The Register
- Building a Slimline Portable NES @ Hackaday
Subject: Graphics Cards | March 13, 2019 - 02:41 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: report, rumor, wccftech, amd, navi, gpu, graphics, video card, 7nm, radeon
Could Navi be coming a bit sooner than we expected? I'll quote directly from the sourced report by Usman Pirzada over at WCCFtech:
"I have been told that AMD’s Navi GPU is at least one whole month behind AMD’s 7nm Ryzen launch, so if the company launches the 3000 series desktop processors at Computex like they are planning to, you should not expect the Navi GPU to land before early August. The most likely candidates for launch during this window are Gamescom and Siggraph. I would personally lean towards Gamescom simply because it is a gaming product and is the more likely candidate but anything can happen with AMD!
Some rumors previously had suggested an October launch, but as of now, AMD is telling its partners to expect the launch exactly a month after the Ryzen 7nm launch."
Paying particular attention to the second paragraph from the quote above, if this report is coming from board partners we will probably start seeing leaked box art and all the fixings from VideoCardz as August nears - if indeed July is the release month for the Ryzen 3000 series CPUs (and come on, how could they pass on a 7/7 launch for the 7nm CPUs?).
Subject: General Tech | February 23, 2019 - 03:08 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: TSMC, lithography, euv, asml, 7nm, 5nm
According to Hexus, chip manufacturing giant TSMC will begin mass production of its enhanced 7nm process node as soon as next month. The new "CLN7FF+, N7+" mode incorporates limited use of EUV (extreme ultraviolet lithography) on four non-critical layers using specialized equipment from ASML to offer 20% higher transistor density and between six to twelve percent lower power consumption at the same complexity/frequency. Those numbers are versus TSMC's current 7nm process node (CLN7FF, N7) which uses DUV (deep ultraviolet lithography) with ArF (Argon Fluoride) excimer lasers.
TSMC is reportedly buying up slightly more than half of ASML's production of EUV equipment for 2019 with the chip maker reserving 18 of the 30 EUV units that will ship this year. It will use the ASML Twinscan NXE step and scan machines to produce its enhanced 7nm node and allow TSMC to familiarize themselves with the technology and dial it in for use with its upcoming 5nm node (and beyond) which will more heavily incorporate EUV with it being used on up to 14 layers of the 5nm process node manufacturing. AnandTech reports that the 5nm EUV node will bring 1.8-times the transistor density (45% area reduction) of the non-EUV 7nm node along with either 20% less power usage or 15% more performance at the same chip complexity and frequency.
Interestingly, while 7nm production accounted for roughly 9% of TSMC's output in 2018, it will reportedly be up to a quarter of all TSMC's chip shipments in 2019.
Mass production of the 7nm EUV node will begin as soon as March with risk production of 5nm chips slated to being in April with the first chip designs being taped out within the first half of the year. Volume production of 5nm chips is not expected until the first half of 2020, however, though that would put it just in time for AMD's Zen 2+ architecture. Of course, AMD, Apple, HiSilicon, and Xilinx are TSMC's big customers for the current 7nm node (especially AMD who is using TSMC for its 7nm CPU and GPU orders), and Huawei / HiSilicon may well be TSMC's first customer for the EUV incorporating CLN7FF+, N7+ node.
With GlobalFoundries backing off of leading-edge process techs and shelving 7nm, Intel and Samsung are TSMC's competition in this extremely complicated and expensive space. 2020 and beyond are going to be very interesting as EUV production ramps up and is pushed as far as it can go to bring process technologies as close to the theoretical limits that the market will bear. I think we still have a good while left for process shrinks, with some of these lower node numbers being attributed to marketing (with some elements being that small but depending on what and how they measure these nodes) but it is definitely going to get expensive and I am curious who will continue on and carry the ball to the traditional manufacturing process finish line or if we will need some other exotic materials or way of computing paradigm shift to happen before we even attempt to get there simply due to unrealistic R&D and other costs not making it worth it enough for even the big players to pursue.
In talking with Josh Walrath, he clarified that EUV does not, by itself, offer performance enhancements, but it does cut down on exposures/patterning and reduces the steps where things can go wrong which can lead to improved yields when implemented correctly. Using extreme ultraviolet lithography isn't a magic bullet though, as the fabrication equipment is expensive and uses a lot of power driving up manufacturing costs. TSMC is using EUV on its N7+ node to get "tighter metal pitch" and more density along with lower power consumption. Performance improvements are still unknown at this point (to the public, anyway), but as Mr. Walrath said performance isn't going to increase simply from moving to EUV. When moving to 5nm, TSMC does claim performance improvements, but most of those gains are likely attributed to the much higher density of the resulting chips. Using EUV to get yields up at that small of a node is likely the biggest reason for utilizing EUV to get enough useable wafer and dies per wafer. TSMC must believe that the costs [of EUV] versus trying to do it [5nm] without working in EUV into the processis worth it. Stay tuned to this week's PC Perspective podcast if you are interested in additional thoughts from JoshTekk and the team (or check out our Discord server).
What are your thoughts?
Subject: Processors | February 19, 2019 - 02:57 PM | Tim Verry
Tagged: Zen 2, x570, X500, Ryzen 3000, navi, matisse, amd, 7nm
Spotted by HardOCP, Paul from Red Gaming Tech recently shared leaked information from a source with a reputation of being reliable (from past leaks about 7nm GPUs) who claims that AMD will be announcing a plethora of products at Computex in June to setup for the launch of Zen 2-based 7nm "Matisse" Ryzen 3000 desktop processors, X500 series chipset-based motherboards, and 7nm Navi-based consumer gaming graphics cards on July 7th (The 7th for 7nm I guess).
Image via AnandTech
As a refresher, Zen 2 is the next major architectural jump for AMD while also pushing a new smaller process node. AMD has not yet revealed all the details about Zen 2 especially about consumer chips, but the new microarchitecture is said to feature tweaks to the front end that along with clockspeed bumps from the TSMC 7nm process will allow them to realize notable IPC and single threaded performance gains. When talking about EPYC 2 "Rome" server processors (Zen 2 based) AMD hinted at changes to branch prediction and pre-fetching as well as increased cache sizes and larger FPUs (256-bit), for example. The move to 7nm allegedly allows AMD to hit similar power envelopes to Zen+ (12nm) Ryzen 2000 series processors while hitting much higher clockspeeds at up to 5.1 GHz boost on their top-end chip. While mobile chips may strike a finer balance between power usage and performance with the move to 7nm, on the desktop AMD is spending nearly all the power savings on performance (which makes sense). Note that it is still not officially official that AMD is using a scaled down EPYC setup with more than one 7nm (TSMC) CPU die and a separate IO die (14nm Global Foundries), [they only teased a chip at CES with an IO die and a single CPU die] but I am of the opinion that that particular rumor makes more sense than otherwise so am inclined to believe this is the case.
Ryzen 3000 series processors feature an IO chiplet along with what is rumored to be up to two CPU chiplets (image credit: Tom's Hardware).
From previous leaks, Ryzen 3000 is said to cover all the bases from six core Ryzen 3 3300 series chips to midrange eight core Ryzen 5 and on up to 12 and 16 core Ryzen 9 CPUs that move beyond a single CPU die to two 7nm CPU dies that feature eight cores each. In fact, the top end Ryzen 9 3850X is supposedly a 16 core (32 thread) monster of a desktop chip that has a base frequency of 4.3 GHz and can boost up to 5.1 GHz with a 135W TDP (which when overclocked will likely draw dramatically more like we've seen with both AMD and Intel's top end consumer chips) and price tag of around $520 (400 pounds). The Ryzen 7 3700 and 3700X are 12 core (24 thread) models with TDPs of 95W and 105W respectively with the non-x SKU clocked at 3.8 to 4.6 GHz and the 3700X clocked at 4.2 GHz base and 5 GHz boost. The Ryzen 5 3600 and 3600X are the top end single CPU die models (though a 2x single CCX per die chips might be a reality depending on yields) at eight cores and 16 threads. The Ryzen 3 3300 series parts represent the low end which is now interestingly six cores (oh how times have changed!). Perhaps most interesting of the leaked chips are the Ryzen 5 3600G (~$207) and the Ryzen 3 3300G (~$130) though which feature Navi 12 integrated graphics (presumably these processors combine one 7nm CPU die, one 7nm GPU die, and one 14nm IO die) with 15 and 20 CUs respectively.
As for motherboards, in general the new chips will use the AM4 socket and will be compatible with older 300 and 400 series motherboards with a BIOS update though the top end chips may well necessitate a new X570 or other X500 series motherboard with better power delivery especially for enthusiasts planning to attempt stable overclocks.
Unfortunately, on Navi details are still a bit scarce but the new architecture should bring performance enhancements even beyond Radeon VII (Vega on 7nm). Allegedly due to issues with TSMC, Red Gaming Tech's source believes that Navi might be delayed or pushed back beyond the planned mid-summer release date, but we will have to wait and see. As TSMC ramps up its partial EUV enhanced 7nm node it may free up needed production line space of the current 7nm node for AMD (to fight with others over heh) to meet its intended deadline but we will just have to wait and see!
Take these rumors with a grain of salt as usual but it certainly sounds like it is hoing to be an exciting summer for PC hardware! Hopefully more details about Ryzen 3000 and Navi emerge before then though as that's quite a while yet to wait. Of course, Zen 2 APUs are not coming until at least next year and AMD is still not talking Zen 2 Threadripper which may not see release until the fall at the very earliest. I am very interested to see how AMDs chiplet based design fares and how well they are able to scale it across their product stack(s) as well as what Intel's response will be as it presses on with a fine tuned 14nm++ and a less ambitious 10nm node.
- AMD Shows Off Zen 2-Based EPYC "Rome" Server Processor
- Podcast #521 - Zen 2, 7nm Vega, SSD Vulnerabilities, and more!
- Nein, Zeneration 3 is best
Subject: Graphics Cards | February 7, 2019 - 03:30 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: VRAM, video card, Vega 20, Vega, radeon vii, radeon, pcie, opencl, HBM2, graphics card, gaming, compute, amd, 7nm, 16GB
While enjoying the pictures and tests Sebastian ran on the new AMD Radeon VII, was there a game that we missed that is near and dear to your heart? Then perhaps one of these reviews below will solve that, the list even includes Linux performance for those on that side of the silicon. For instance, over at The Tech Report you can check out Monster Hunter: World, Forza Horizon 4 and the impressive results that the new 7nm card offers in Battlefield V.
"AMD's Radeon VII is the first gaming graphics card powered by a 7 nm GPU: Vega 20. This hopped-up Vega chip comes linked up with 16 GB of HBM2 RAM good for 1 TB/s of memory bandwidth. We put this potent combination to the test to see if it can beat out Nvidia's GeForce RTX 2080."
Here are some more Graphics Card articles from around the web:
- AMD Radeon VII @ Guru of 3D
- AMD Radeon VII 16GB Video Card Review @ Legit Reviews
- AMD Radeon VII: A 7nm-long step in the right direction, but is that enough? @ Ars Technica
- AMD Radeon VII 1440p, 4K & Ultrawide Gaming Performance @ Techgage
- AMD Radeon VII Review: RTX Killer or Flop? @ Techspot
- AMD Radeon VII 16 GB @ TechPowerUp
- AMD Radeon VII @ Kitguru
- AMD Radeon VII Linux Benchmarks - Powerful Open-Source Graphics For Compute & Gaming @ Phoronix
Overview and Specifications
After a month-long wait following its announcement during the AMD keynote at CES, the Radeon VII is finally here. By now you probably know that this is the world’s first 7nm gaming GPU, and it is launching today at a price equal to NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 2080 at $699.
The AMD Radeon VII in action on the test bench
More than a gaming card, the Radeon VII is being positioned as a card for content creators as well by AMD, with its 16GB of fast HBM2 memory and enhanced compute capabilities complimenting what should be significantly improved gaming performance compared to the RX Vega 64.
Vega at 7nm
At the heart of the Radeon VII is the Vega 20 GPU, introduced with the Radeon Instinct MI60 and MI50 compute cards for the professional market back in November. The move to 7nm brings a reduction in die size from 495 mm2 with Vega 10 to 331 mm2 with Vega 20, but this new GPU is more than a die shrink with the most notable improvement by way of memory throughput, as this is significantly higher with Vega 20.
Double the HBM2, more than double the bandwidth
While effective memory speeds have been improved only slightly from 1.89 Gbps to 2.0 Gbps, far more impactful is the addition of two 4GB HBM2 stacks which not only increase the total memory to 16GB, but bring with them two additional memory controllers which double the interface width from 2048-bit to 4096-bit. This provides a whopping 1TB (1024 GB/s) of memory bandwidth, up from 483.8 GB/s with the RX Vega 64.
Subject: Graphics Cards | January 12, 2019 - 08:17 AM | Jim Tanous
Tagged: vega 64, Vega, RX VEGA 64, radeon vii, gpu, benchmarks, amd, 7nm
After announcing the Radeon VII this week at CES, AMD has quietly released its own internal benchmarks showing how the upcoming card potentially compares to the Radeon RX Vega 64, AMD's current flagship desktop GPU released in August 2017.
The internal benchmarks, compiled by AMD Performance Labs earlier this month, were released as a footnote in AMD's official Radeon VII press release and first noticed by HardOCP. AMD tested 25 games and 4 media creation applications, with the Radeon VII averaging around a 29 percent improvement in games and 36 percent improvement in professional apps.
AMD's test platform for its gaming Radeon VII benchmarks was an Intel Core i7-7700K with 16GB of DDR4 memory clocked at 3000MHz running Windows 10 with AMD Driver version 18.50. CPU frequencies and exact Windows 10 version were not disclosed. AMD states that all games were run at "4K max settings" with reported frame rate results based on the average of three separate runs each.
For games, the Radeon VII benchmarks show a wide performance delta compared to RX Vega 64, from as little as 7.5 percent in Hitman 2 to as much as 68.4 percent for Fallout 76. Below is a chart created by PC Perspective from AMD's data of the frame rate results from all 25 games.
In terms of media creation applications, AMD changed its testing platform to the Ryzen 7 2700X, also paired with 16GB of DDR4 at 3000MHz. Again, exact processor frequencies and other details were not disclosed. The results reveal between a 27% and 62% improvement:
It is important to reiterate that the data presented in the above charts is from AMD's own internal testing, and should therefore be viewed skeptically until third party Radeon VII benchmarks are available. However, these benchmarks do provide an interesting first look at potential Radeon VII performance compared to its predecessor.
Radeon VII is scheduled to launch February 7, 2019 with an MSRP of $699. In addition to the reference design showcased at CES, AMD has confirmed that third party Radeon VII boards will be available from the company's GPU partners.
Subject: Graphics Cards | January 11, 2019 - 04:35 PM | Sebastian Peak
Tagged: video cards, Vega VII, Vega, Refresh, radeon, Mark Papermaster, graphics, gpus, cto, amd, 7nm
AMD CTO Mark Papermaster spoke with The Street in a video interview published yesterday, where he made it clear that we can indeed expect a new Radeon lineup this year. “It’s like what we do every year,” he said, “we’ll round out the whole roadmap”.
Part of this refresh has already been announced, of course, as Papermaster noted, “we’re really excited to start on the high end” (speaking about the Radeon VII) and he concluded with the promise that “you’ll see the announcements over the course of the year as we refresh across our Radeon roadmap”. It was not mentioned if the refreshed lineup will include 7 nm parts derived from the Vega VII shown at CES, but it seems reasonable to assume that we haven’t seen the last of Vega 2 in 2019.
Subject: General Tech | January 11, 2019 - 01:14 PM | Jeremy Hellstrom
Tagged: amd, 7nm, CoWoS, TSMC, SPIL, TFME
DigiTimes today is sharing some information about just where AMD's 7nm chips will be processed and there seems to be a name missing. TSMC, SPIL and TFME will all be producing specific products but there is no mention of GLOBALFOUNDRIES in the news post.
TSMC will handle the bulk of the EPYC and HPC versions of Vega production with their chip-on-wafer-on-substrate, as one might expect; SPIL and TFME will handle desktop Ryzen and GPUs. One hopes that by diversifying their production sources we can avoid shortages from one line effecting the entire market as we have seen in the past.
"TSMC is also among the backend partners of AMD for its new 7nm computing and graphics products, according to industry sources. Siliconware Precision Industries (SPIL) under Taiwan's ASE Technology Holding, and China-based Tongfu Microelectronics (TFME) are other backend service providers for the chips, the sources continued."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Windows 10 Insiders sent on quest deep into Registry to fetch goblet of Reserved Storage @ The Register
- After broken promise, AT&T says it’ll stop selling phone location data @ Ars Technica
- Developer Bungie Splits With Publisher Activision, Will Keep World Shooter Series Destiny @ Slashdot
- Reddit locks out users with poor password hygiene after spotting 'unusual activity' @ The Register
- PC shipments drop again, just as things were starting to look up @ The Inquirer
- Sex toy wins CES robotics award, then has it taken away in ridiculous moral panic @ The Inquirer
- Hackaday Podcast Ep1 – Seriously, We Know What We’re Doing