Ryzen 7000 Threadripper Could Resurrect HEDT, Have PCIe Gen 5
HEDT reportedly gets 64 lanes, workstation 128 lanes
Noted leaker @g01d3nm4ng0 claims that AMD could release two motherboard platforms to support its next-gen Storm Peak Threadripper CPUs, instead of just one, with a workstation platform and an HEDT (High-End Desktop) platform for enthusiasts. Both platforms will reportedly get an upgrade to PCIe Gen 5 connectivity, with the HEDT platform supporting 64 lanes and the workstation platform getting 128 lanes. As with any leak, take this information with a grain of salt.
News of AMD returning to the HEDT market is surprising, as the company recently killed off its own HEDT platform with the introduction of its Ryzen Threadripper Pro 5000WX CPUs, moving the entire platform to the ‘Pro’ branding for the workstation market exclusively. We don’t what incentivized AMD to make this decision, but we suspect low consumer demand was a contributing factor.
It’s no secret that the HEDT market as a whole has seen better days. When AMD restarted the core-count wars in 2017 (with first-gen Ryzen), mainstream consumer platforms saw unprecedented jumps in compute capabilities, with core counts matching and even outpacing previous-generation HEDT CPUs. This led to the mainstream platform eating up a lot of the HEDT market. In fact, Intel also left the market as well after Cascade Lake-X.
However, this is not to say AMD has no reason to re-enter the market. Ironically, AMD would be wise to have a HEDT strategy on the back burner just in case it faces competition. Months of leaks and rumors suggest Intel is creating a new HEDT platform that will finally succeed Cascade Lake-X. If Intel goes through with this plan it will consist of a reconfiguration of Sapphire Rapids/Sapphire Rapids-WS to target the HEDT user base.
AMD Storm PeakSeptember 2023HEDT: 4 channel, 64 pcie gen5 lanes, 8 pcie gen3 lanes, support OCWS: 8 channel, 128 pcie gen5 lanes, 8 pcie gen3 lanes, no OC for CPU&MEMDecember 19, 2022
The leaker suggests there will be a lot of similarities between AMD’s new and old HEDT platforms. For example, CPU PCIe capacity is limited to 64 lanes, and the platform is limited to quad-channel memory support — the same as X399. However, the new platform would purportedly come with a few massive upgrades, including PCIe Gen 5 support across all CPU lanes and Gen 3 support for the chipset.
Unsurprisingly, the workstation variant will behave similarly to AMD’s current Ryzen Threadripper 5000WX-supported motherboards, featuring the same 8-channel memory configuration. But the new platform will receive an upgrade to PCIe Gen 5 for the CPU lanes.
These two platforms will run AMD’s next-generation Ryzen Threadripper CPUs, reportedly codenamed Storm Peak. We don’t know much about the new chips, but AMD confirmed next-generation Threadripper is coming with the Zen 4 architecture and will launch somewhere around the end of 2023 or the beginning of 2024.