Update Schedule, 1600X Microarchitecture, and Optane
lightofhonor: How has developing/updating the BIOS process been different then supporting previous AMD sockets or Intel sockets? I've noticed a lot of updates since release on my Killer board. When will the BIOS stop being updated several times a month? When do you think the BIOS will be "done"?
DON WOLIGROSKI: On any new platform, there's going to be more development than usual. It happens with every major socket update, on both AMD and Intel for those who have been around long enough to remember a number of turnovers.
But we're making really good progress, and very quickly. My gut feeling is that the upcoming April update gets us to a place where people are generally satisfied, and then we'll hone that edge in the months to come.
Aris25: Is the 1600X manufactured as a 3x3 or is it a 1800X with one core on each side turned off or is it an 1800X with one core that failed on each side that was then turned off or something else altogether?
DON WOLIGROSKI: The 1600X is essentially an 1800X with one core disabled per CCX (a 3+3 configuration). All 16MB of L3 cache is still enabled, BTW.
Evilwumpus: Can we expect a significant performance difference of Vega or the Polaris refresh when used in conjunction with Ryzen 7 vs an Intel Core i7-7700k?
DON WOLIGROSKI: From a CPU perspective, we try to be graphics-agnostic so everyone can enjoy Ryzen regardless of their choice of GPU.
Nope 1151: Will you ever go back to the green AMD logo?
DON WOLIGROSKI: Your answer lies within (your username).
aeriolwinters: Would the Athlon brand still be active? With the R7 for Enthusiasts, the R5's for mainstream high computing and the R3 for mainstream computing, how do you see the Athlon fit in with all the APU's still not in tow?
DON WOLIGROSKI: Athlon will be used for CPUs that sit below the Ryzen 3 brand, just as it sits below the current FX brand. It will live next to A-series APUs in the same segment. Bristol-Ridge-based APUs and Athlons will be available for Socket AM4 motherboards at an undisclosed date. Stay tuned!
valeman2012: Any plans for Intel Optane support?
DON WOLIGROSKI: The short answer is no. The long answer is:
1. Optane is Intel-proprietary technology, and the Optane M.2 slot is exclusive to some Intel motherboards
2. Intel partnered with Micron to create 3D Xpoint memory technology that Optane is based on. I don't know if Micron's 3D Xpoint-based memory will ever be available as an agnostic solution. I would assume that Intel has an exclusivity clause, but I don't know how long it'd last.
3. In its current form for consumer desktop, Optane is basically an SSD cache drive with a maximum (pitiful) 32GB of storage. They don't even recommend pairing it with an SSD because you wouldn't notice a performance difference. They suggest you pair it with a mechanical hard drive. Lots of hype and little substance.
On the consumer desktop, you're better served with an SSD that actually has decent amount of storage space.
anironbutterfly: I've been reading on the new Ryzen CPUs, in hopes that they're a good successor to the FX-series (I'm currently using an FX-8350 on an original Sabretooth FX990 motherboard with 32 GB DDR RAM). I'm not a gamer, but a hobbyist graphic artist who uses Poser and DAZ|Studio. It's starting to show its age, and I'm looking at options to upgrade. the Ryzen series are the first new straight CPUs I've seen come out of AMD in several years.
I'm curious how this new series of chips might perform for 3d graphics rendering with the Nvidia Iray render engine (and the alternative 3Delight rendering) in comparison to the i5 and i7 Intel CPUs and compatibility with the Nvidia GeForce video cards. (I'm currently using an EVGA Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 4GB that will be progressing into my new build).
DON WOLIGROSKI: I'm not familiar how the Nvidia iRay engine works - I'll assume because it's Nvidia, it's CUDA based. It may not be CPU dependent.
For any CPU-dependent renderer, though, Ryzen will give you colossal - and I mean COLOSSAL - performance increases over FX. And in general, it's just a lot faster and enables multi-tasking in a much more responsive way. Even the sub-$200 Ryzen 5's will give you a tremendous upgrade over the FX. But I encourage you to read the launch day reviews on April 11th.
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