At AMD’s Computex 2018 press conference held today at the Nangang Exhibition Center in Taipei, Taiwan, Anandtech reports that the American semiconductor company announced the imminent release of their newest line of CPUs aimed at the high-end gaming market, the Threadripper 2. Coming in at a staggering 32 cores laid out in its patented Infinity Stack, AMD leapfrogged a recent announcement by primary competitor Intel, themselves having just announced the upcoming release of a 28 core, 5ghz processor.
— AMD (@AMD) June 6, 2018
The Threadripper 2 will utilize AMD’s proprietary Zeppelin 12nm dies, updated to meet the latest iteration of the Zen x86 architecture on display. The announcement of the high-end, high-cost CPU mirrored the announcement of the new Radeon Instinct, a 7nm GPU that acts as both a solid entry for workstations and consumer rigs and as a prelude to an as-yet-to-be-announced Vega chip coming later this year. Both the AMD Threadripper 2 and the Radeon Instinct, if true to spec, signal a bedrock shift in computing capability that will also require an upgrade to existing motherboard architecture.
We may truly be on the precipice of a new boom in PC power that has been somewhat stagnant for the better part of the past decade. Considering a massive shift in the DDR4 DIMM from standard RAM to persistent RAM starting at 128gb per slot having been made possible with the announcement of Intel Optane memory on the horizon as well as the prevalence of and preference for high-speed solid-state memory mounted directly to the motherboard in cutting-edge builds being drawn up today, the CPU announcements made by major manufacturers Intel and AMD are simply the latest piece of the puzzle.
The message? Expect a completely new paradigm in terms of the capabilities of personal computing in the next five years. The next generation is coming, bolstered by a vibrant buyer’s market and a store of software that is seemingly inexhaustible to play with.
AMD has been taking back some of the share previously held in thrall by Intel, with the success of the Ryzen line of CPUs due to their high-performance per dollar proposition having been a pleasant surprise for gamers building a budget rig. The Threadripper 2 will be far beyond that budget range, however, targeting early adopters and PC gaming enthusiasts with deep pockets and a thirst for the latest and greatest.
Intel’s latest offering clocks in at 5ghz with 28 cores. Traditionally, Intel has provided superior clock speed but poorer multi-threading, making them the top choice for gamers who do not engage in creative software solutions such as graphic design, film editing, or rendering. AMD has aimed their pitch at those gamers and artists looking for an all-in-one solution at a much lower cost, a value proposition that delivers equal results in many regards while delivering a price point of half or less of a competing Intel offering.