The high-end desktop market has been fairly quiet recently. Intel’s Cascade Lake processors are not competitive. More than two years have passed since AMD’s Threadripper 3000 series was launched, followed by the crazy 64-core 3990X. We have been hoping to see the Zen 3 version, and if the rumors are true, we may see the next generation of Threadripper in early March. But it has been a year since the launch of 5000 series AM4 processors. Is it too late?
Leak comes from the source Graphics card, Especially pointed out that the new CPU will be launched on March 8, and may be announced at CES in early January. However, the report claims that only the Pro version is currently available. It is not clear whether the non-Pro consumer version will be launched at some point in the future.
It is speculated that the new CPU will be built with the updated Zen3+ architecture, which means moving to 6nm chiplets with higher clocks or slightly higher energy efficiency. The CPU may also be used for V-Cache processing. A hypothetical 64-core CPU with V-Cache can load an unprecedented number of L3 caches.
Threadripper seems to have limited appeal to gamers, but this is not only related to the number of cores. The TRX40 motherboard has a large number of PCIe channels, which can benefit gamers who need a large number of expansion options. If you are running a GPU with a few expansion cards and a bunch of M.2 drives, then these channels will come in handy. There must be a market where 12-core and 16-core Threadripper CPUs are paired with such a feature-rich platform.
Assuming that the Pro version is only launched in March, they will only be relevant to workstation users, because the cost of the CPU and WRX80 motherboard are high. The current Threadripper Pro 3000 series CPU has 128 PCIe channels and supports 8 channels of ECC memory. This is too much for gamers, and it is more in line with the Epyc series of processors. Perhaps the shortage of chips is an important factor in AMD’s thinking. The chips used for Threadripper CPUs are shared with Pro and Epyc processors, and AMD may reserve the best chiplets for the most profitable processors. If we do get the desktop Threadripper, and it will be launched in the middle of the year or later, it may be too late to have too much impact on the market.
Intel will return to HEDT’s competitiveness with its Sapphire Rapids CPU, which may be launched in the third quarter of 2022. At that time AMD may face some fierce competition. Coupled with the mainstream Zen 4 and Intel’s 13th generation Raptor Lake processors, if you want to migrate to a new platform, from the bottom of the market to the top of the market, 2022 looks very exciting.