AMD is set to bring the heat with Zen 5, Ryzen 9000, and new X870E motherboards

zohaibahd

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In context: With mandatory USB4 support coming to AMD's next-gen X870E chipsets, upgrading to Zen 5 Ryzen 9000 CPUs could get pricey. The new connectivity standard requires an extra controller chip, which vendors will likely pass on as higher motherboard costs. Be ready to budget more than expected if you're planning a Zen 5 build.

AMD is preparing to launch new motherboards based on the 800 series chipset alongside Ryzen 9000 "Granite Ridge" desktop processors later this year. The new motherboards will bring updated features like mandatory USB4 support to maximize performance with the Zen 5 architecture.

Leading the charge is the flagship AMD X870E chipset, succeeding the current X670E from the Ryzen 7000 generation. With AMD sticking to the AM5 CPU socket, the 800 series will support not only Ryzen 9000, but Ryzen 7000 and Ryzen 8000 CPUs as well.

A key upgrade with X870E is mandatory 40Gbps USB4 connectivity, according to Moore's Law is Dead. To implement this, motherboard makers will need to use a 3-chip solution: two Promontory 21 bridge chips plus a discrete ASMedia ASM4242 USB4 host controller. AMD may allow other approved USB4 controllers in the future, but a discrete chip seems necessary to meet the 40Gbps specification.

Requiring discrete USB4 adds cost for motherboard makers, which reduces the chances of affordable X870E models. This raises the question of why AMD doesn't integrate a USB4 controller into their I/O die. The answer is likely cost and time savings. Designing and producing a performant integrated USB4 controller isn't cheap or fast, so using third-party solutions is easier, albeit less optimized.

AMD is reportedly mandating the ASMedia chip to ensure consistency and compatibility across all X870E boards, regardless of manufacturer. While this limits vendor flexibility, it provides a reliable baseline experience for the new platform.

The upcoming Ryzen 9000 CPUs are based on 4nm Zen 5 chiplets paired with a 6nm I/O die, mostly carried over from Ryzen 7000. The I/O die gains some updates to the memory controller for faster DDR5 support. AMD now recommends DDR5-6400 as the new performance sweet spot, a bump up from 6000.

Both Ryzen 9000 and the X870E chipset will launch together later this year. The CPUs will also work in existing 600 series boards with simple BIOS updates, thanks again to the unchanged AM5 socket. Most AM5 boards feature BIOS flashback for easy upgrading, too.

However, the same source suggests that Zen 5 has faced development challenges, making the goal of launching a 16-core lineup by mid-2024 slightly ambitious. MLID adds that they'd be surprised if the microarchitecture is ready before this summer. Nevertheless, AMD could still position Zen 5 competitively at launch with X3D and Zen 5c variants, should the core chips face delays.

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This raises the question of why AMD doesn't integrate a USB4 controller into their I/O die.
Just another way to eat up valuable PCIe lanes. I really dont think AMD is being criticized enough over their lack of PCIe lanes and the "just go buy a threadripper" crowd isn't helping. They're even using PCIe lanes on monolithic dies to make their APUs work so that people have even less PCIe lanes. The GPU is literally attached to the I/O die, there is no reason that APUs need to use PCI lanes and it hurts performance in top of that. Now it's impacting USB4.

Before AM5 and everything wasn't run on PCIe that was fine, we no longer live in that world. There aren't enough PCIe lanes to fill up all the ports on a motherboard. It's to the point where manufactured of NVME drives are making "2x" drives which would be fine if your GPU wasn't using up all the PCIe 5.0 lanes so that your 2x 5.0 nvme drive is now running at PCIe 3.0 speeds because it's really running at 2x 4.0.
 
I'm planning on two more builds sometime in the not-too-distant future having done two AM5 builds last year. I don't regret not waiting given that what I built those two PCs with is, perhaps, over-powered for their tasks - a server/router/firewall, and an HTPC. I'll have to see what the prices are and whether I want to spend what AMD wants for the new chips. One of my AM5 builds was with an ASRock 650E MB that was quite decent, if I don't say so myself, with its features given that it supports PCI-e 5.0 NVME and an x16 PCI-e graphics card.
Just another way to eat up valuable PCIe lanes. I really dont think AMD is being criticized enough over their lack of PCIe lanes and the "just go buy a threadripper" crowd isn't helping. They're even using PCIe lanes on monolithic dies to make their APUs work so that people have even less PCIe lanes. The GPU is literally attached to the I/O die, there is no reason that APUs need to use PCI lanes and it hurts performance in top of that. Now it's impacting USB4.

Before AM5 and everything wasn't run on PCIe that was fine, we no longer live in that world. There aren't enough PCIe lanes to fill up all the ports on a motherboard. It's to the point where manufactured of NVME drives are making "2x" drives which would be fine if your GPU wasn't using up all the PCIe 5.0 lanes so that your 2x 5.0 nvme drive is now running at PCIe 3.0 speeds because it's really running at 2x 4.0.
If you would like things to change, then try writing Lisa Su. Even if she does not read your letter, one of her assistants will and it just might strike a chord with them, her, and the company.

I used to take that approach. In fact, when Bill Gates was Microsoft CEO, I wrote him a couple of times and I got what I wanted. I sh!t you not!

And I somewhat agree with you that now that everything runs on PCI-e, more lanes, even in the consumer space, makes sense if not having more PCI-e lanes being a necessity.

Now all that needs to be done is convince AMD of that. Something like you are suggesting might also enhance Threadripper and Epyc, too. I know the high end chips in those lines already ave 128 PCI-e lanes max, but it would not surprise me if AMD is clotheslining Threadripper and Epyc PCI-e lanes, too.
 
The weakness of AMD is not PCIe lanes, is not USB4, is not thunderbolt 5....
it's their software department, drivers and BIOS, they have already prooven they can do hardware well enough. it is NOT normal for a computer to take 15 minutes to boot :(
 
The weakness of AMD is not PCIe lanes, is not USB4, is not thunderbolt 5....
it's their software department, drivers and BIOS, they have already prooven they can do hardware well enough. it is NOT normal for a computer to take 15 minutes to boot :(

Hmmm... I don't believe it is at all normal or typical that any AMD system takes anywhere near 15 minutes to boot. My systems certainly don't (boot times are counted in seconds). Where are you seeing this?
 
Memory training and long boot times still not fixed ? Knowing AMD it will take 2-3 years to fix...
Until then AM4 from full off to desktop 20-30 seconds.

Just test this now, UEFI loads in 10 sec and windows in 15 sec more.
 
Memory training and long boot times still not fixed ? Knowing AMD it will take 2-3 years to fix...
Until then AM4 from full off to desktop 20-30 seconds.

Just test this now, UEFI loads in 10 sec and windows in 15 sec more.
I think its inherently due to the way the chiplets work and how they communicate with the memory, where even if they have done memory training, it still has to wake up the full connection between chiplet to the IOD to the memory to make sure its all good along with the chipset taking its time to respond (when you look at how the post codes progress), so it might be an architectural thing in their cpu design that is not easy to fix, I do get faster times than that for Windows though and I dual boot, so not sure whay decides that
 
BTW I'm on a ZEN 3...so chiplet theory can drop.
The only memory training I have seen until ZEN 4 was on dual soket Xeon's with more than 128GB ECC. But that was just on the first boot or after a UEFI upgrade (BIOS, BMC or other major motherboard FW update) After this cold boot the rest are normal, for a server 1-2 minutes for UEFI firmware to wake all devices and start posting OK.
 
It was a Dell PE R730 the that took like 10 minutes to configure RAM if I remember correctly.
But for a 2 or 4 memory slots to train memory...
iu


BTW Intel guys do the same memory training happens for gen 13 and 14 with DDR5?
 
The weakness of AMD is not PCIe lanes, is not USB4, is not thunderbolt 5....
it's their software department, drivers and BIOS, they have already prooven they can do hardware well enough. it is NOT normal for a computer to take 15 minutes to boot :(

Well my Lenovo Legion Go:
- it’s an AMD platform with LPDDR5X
- has TWO USB 4 with eGPU support
- it takes just a few seconds

It’s doable, it doesn’t take minutes to boot up and I never had any UEFI issues.
 
Hopefully they are working on a more native USB4 for 2nd gen , as they will be a more sensible upgrade time. New motherboards revised , everything bedded in ,memory, drives cheaper.
Still the speed of USB4 will be under utilised by most users.

Plus the biggy - do you need a new case ??
remember USBC, took awhile to get cheaper cases with a slot.
So that leaves an a motherboard slot, which is harder to access

as yRaz says unless just gaming or general use , many buying the this want max bandwidth.
Extreme users may want 4 M2 drives
People doing AI not wanting a threadripper may want 2 RTX5090s plus at least 2 M2 drives , plus USBc , USB4/3/2 plus a number of sata connections
 
The weakness of AMD is not PCIe lanes, is not USB4, is not thunderbolt 5....
it's their software department, drivers and BIOS, they have already prooven they can do hardware well enough. it is NOT normal for a computer to take 15 minutes to boot :(
My 7800X3D/x670e boots to windows in 5 seconds. Are you talking about the initial launch that trains the memory one time boot/bios update?
 
Anybody thinking Arrow Lake will be better will be in for a rude shock too when they see the price of new Z890 MB's.

Anyway don't care about X870E, B850E will be more than sufficient.
 
Hopefully they are working on a more native USB4 for 2nd gen , as they will be a more sensible upgrade time. New motherboards revised , everything bedded in ,memory, drives cheaper.
Still the speed of USB4 will be under utilised by most users.

Plus the biggy - do you need a new case ??
remember USBC, took awhile to get cheaper cases with a slot.
So that leaves an a motherboard slot, which is harder to access

as yRaz says unless just gaming or general use , many buying the this want max bandwidth.
Extreme users may want 4 M2 drives
People doing AI not wanting a threadripper may want 2 RTX5090s plus at least 2 M2 drives , plus USBc , USB4/3/2 plus a number of sata connections
Found a great article from Anandtech showing how competitive AMD Zen4 is vs current Intel Raptor lake offering in CPU Benchmark Performance: AI and Inferencing.


You would be compromising significant performance and efficiency when it comes to Intel with current lineup.
 
The weakness of AMD is not PCIe lanes, is not USB4, is not thunderbolt 5....
it's their software department, drivers and BIOS, they have already prooven they can do hardware well enough. it is NOT normal for a computer to take 15 minutes to boot :(

I think you may have the big issue with your system to take 15 mins to boot. Also, who turn off the computer nowadays? The only time I turn off my system is when I go on vacation.
 
I think you may have the big issue with your system to take 15 mins to boot. Also, who turn off the computer nowadays? The only time I turn off my system is when I go on vacation.

- I do. I even turn off that god awful windows fastboot crap so I get a freshly loaded windows everytime.

Don't have any problems with my computer either, and it only takes a couple seconds to boot to desktop with an NVME drive.
 
15 mins boot means one must still be on old BIOS. New ones will still require memory training by default, but should boot into Windows under a minute. It’s that blank screen that may take about 40 to 45 seconds for my case to get to the boot screen.
 
BTW: I have a 7800x3d and the first boot did take a long time and I thought my machine was broken.

With the latest firmware update it now boots to windows 11 desktop in 30 seconds or less.

Even when I made it a year ago after the first boot it was ready to go in about a minute or so.

So I'd say depending on the mainboard you're using, the memory training on every boot issue is fixed.
 
Just another way to eat up valuable PCIe lanes. I really dont think AMD is being criticized enough over their lack of PCIe lanes and the "just go buy a threadripper" crowd isn't helping. They're even using PCIe lanes on monolithic dies to make their APUs work so that people have even less PCIe lanes. The GPU is literally attached to the I/O die, there is no reason that APUs need to use PCI lanes and it hurts performance in top of that. Now it's impacting USB4.

Before AM5 and everything wasn't run on PCIe that was fine, we no longer live in that world. There aren't enough PCIe lanes to fill up all the ports on a motherboard. It's to the point where manufactured of NVME drives are making "2x" drives which would be fine if your GPU wasn't using up all the PCIe 5.0 lanes so that your 2x 5.0 nvme drive is now running at PCIe 3.0 speeds because it's really running at 2x 4.0.
While I partially agree with this, fact is that AMD has done quite good job. AM4 offered only one x4 NVMe drive from CPU, AM5 offers two. And since you can "sacrifice" 8 PCIe 5.0 lanes from GPU, you can put pretty good PCIe setup, assuming video card is OK with 8 lanes.

And then there is Intel. AMD still offers whopping 24 PCIe 5.0 lanes from CPU (excluding chipset lanes), Intel has only 16 PCIe 5.0 lanes and 4 PCIe 4.0 lanes. AMD is miles ahead and rumors say Intel will only reach parity with AMD when next platform comes.

Some AM5 boards do not even support PCIe 5.0. Putting more lanes on CPU would be total waste since even current ones are not used on some motherboards. That's also reason why AMD cut lanes on APUs: manufacturers could more easily use all available lanes, too bad there is less on APU. You see, more lanes on CPU, more lanes customers expect motherboard to use.

While more lanes could be fine, I'm pretty happy with my NVMe setup (2 from CPU, 1 from first chipset, 1 from second chipset).
 
Just another way to eat up valuable PCIe lanes. I really dont think AMD is being criticized enough over their lack of PCIe lanes and the "just go buy a threadripper" crowd isn't helping. They're even using PCIe lanes on monolithic dies to make their APUs work so that people have even less PCIe lanes. The GPU is literally attached to the I/O die, there is no reason that APUs need to use PCI lanes and it hurts performance in top of that. Now it's impacting USB4.

Before AM5 and everything wasn't run on PCIe that was fine, we no longer live in that world. There aren't enough PCIe lanes to fill up all the ports on a motherboard. It's to the point where manufactured of NVME drives are making "2x" drives which would be fine if your GPU wasn't using up all the PCIe 5.0 lanes so that your 2x 5.0 nvme drive is now running at PCIe 3.0 speeds because it's really running at 2x 4.0.
Hasn't AMD offered more lanes than Intel since Zen1 and it was Intel that was forced to increase the lane count? 14th gen had 20 lanes and arrow lake should get 24. I may be mistaken but doesn't the 7950x3D have 28 lanes?
 
Hasn't AMD offered more lanes than Intel since Zen1 and it was Intel that was forced to increase the lane count? 14th gen had 20 lanes and arrow lake should get 24. I may be mistaken but doesn't the 7950x3D have 28 lanes?
The PCIe issue is more complicated than that. But it's interesting you brought up the 7950x3d. AMD has workstation level processors but doesn't support ECC, while Intel does. When having a platform that supports upto 256GB of ram, ecc actually becomes a real issue.

Back to the "28 lanes." AM5 doesn't have 28 true lanes and whether or not all those lanes support PCIe 5.0 is up to the manufacturer. There is an issue of only the 16x slot and 1 NVME port supporting PCIe 5.0 on many boards. 4 of those 28 lanes are reserved for that NVME slot. However, you have an issue of AMD not even supporting 5.0 or 28 lanes on all AM5 CPUs.
 
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