August 31, 2017 // 2 p.m.
AMD is today bringing to market the previously announced Ryzen Threadripper 1900X, and it has also revealed September 25th availability for NVMe RAID for Threadripper that will allow booting from NVMe RAID volumes on X399.
Using the same Zen architecture, multi-chip module (MCM) design, and Socket TR4 packaging as the already available 16-core, 32-thread (16c/32t) Ryzen Threadripper 1950X and 12c/24t Ryzen Threadripper 1920X, the Ryzen Threadripper 1900X drops the core and thread count to eight and 16 respectively. Launching at $549 excluding taxes in the US, this 8c/16t part will serve as the entry-level CPU for the company's new high-end desktop (HEDT) X399 platform. There is no official UK MSRP, but we do know that Overclockers UK has the chip in stock and will be selling it for £518.99 including VAT.
The Ryzen Threadripper 1900X has the highest base clock of the family at 3.8GHz as well as an all-core boost of 3.9GHz. Precision Boost (limited to four cores) is set to 4GHz, and Extended Frequency Range (XFR) is set to 200MHz, potentially allowing for speeds of up to 4.2GHz on the four best performing cores provided your cooling allows it – these two specifications are shared across the whole family. Once again, AMD is said to be selecting the top five percent of dies produced for use in Threadripper CPUs (determined mainly by the frequency/voltage curve). The new CPU loses half the L3 cache of the other two (16MB versus 32MB) but has the same 180W TDP and access to the full set of 64 PCIe 3.0 lanes, with four of those dedicated to the X399 chipset.
You may note that the new chip's core, thread, and cache specifications match those of the Ryzen 7 1800X, which currently retails for under £450 including VAT. The Ryzen Threadripper 1900X, however, has a higher base frequency but mainly brings with it the increased I/O capability of the X399/TR4 platform thanks to the 64 PCIe 3.0 lanes (just 24 with the 1800X). As such, it targets users who don't need more than eight cores and 16 threads but who do have workloads that demand massive PCIe throughput i.e. large multi-GPU setups and/or RAID-enabled NVMe storage volumes. Support for quad-channel memory and ECC memory (on the right boards) may also tempt certain users.
AMD has also used the launch of the Ryzen Threadripper 1900X to announce a tentative availability date for NVMe RAID for Threadripper. Currently set for September 25th, this feature will enable Threadripper users to create bootable RAID volumes from multiple NVMe drives, with up to 10 devices supported. RAID 0, RAID 1, and RAID 10 arrays will be available to use – no word yet on RAID 5. NVMe RAID for Threadripper will be free (comparing favourably to Intel's VROC solution that requires users to use Intel SSDs and purchase a key to unlock bootable RAID functionality beyond RAID 0) and delivered via a BIOS update. When questioned, AMD confirmed that the X370 platform will not be receiving a similar feature.