AMD motherboard manufacturers ASRock, Gigabyte, and MSI have started rolling out new BIOS revisions for X399-based motherboards to support AMD's forthcoming Threadripper 2 or Threadripper 2000-series processors.
The second generation of AMD Ryzen Threadripper processors are expected to hit shelves sometime in the third quarter of this year. Rumor has it that the chipmaker will launch the new processors in just a little over two weeks, on August 13. With the recent large release of X399 BIOSes with updated microcode to support Threadripper 2 processors, that rumor could have some truth to it.
Consumers who are interested in picking up a shiny new Threadripper 2 processor for their systems have various options. The initial rumors state that the flagship Threadripper 2990WX is an absolute beast with its 32 cores and 64 threads operating at a base frequency of 3GHz with an expected turbo frequency around 3.4GHz. As we go down the hierarchy, there's the Threadripper 2970WX coming in at 24 cores and 48 threads, the Threadripper 2950X with 16 cores and 32 threads, and the Threadripper 2920X with 12 cores and 24 threads.
Threadripper 2 processors, based on AMD's Zen+ design, employ GlobalFoundries' 12nm fabrication process. Therefore, the new processors should ship with noticeable improvements, such as higher frequencies and lower memory latency, than their predecessors. However, the Threadripper 2000-series processors do carry a 250W TDP (thermal design power) rating, which makes their 1000-series counterparts' 180W appear rather conservative.
As part of AMD's commitment to the X399 chipset, Threadripper 2 processors retain the chipmaker's 4,094-pin TR4 socket and will work without hiccups on existing X399 motherboards on the market as long as the motherboard has the latest BIOS update. However, refreshed X399 motherboards with out-of-box support for Threadripper 2, such as the MSI MEG X399 Creation and Gigabyte X399 Aorus Xtreme, will also be available for consumers with deep pockets.