One of many criticisms levied at AMD final 12 months was that it launched its new Threadripper Professional platform in September however it was vendor-locked on the time to the Lenovo Thinkstation P620. The P620 appears to have offered like sizzling muffins, and the system design is absolutely neat (we’ve got one in for testing), however the truth that events solely have Lenovo as an possibility was thought-about a limiting issue for some. Quick ahead to the start of 2021, and AMD has introduced that TR Professional will likely be made obtainable at retail, permitting different OEMs to additionally construct techniques. Alongside this, three motherboard producers have additionally showcased their upcoming motherboard choices, and probably the most anticipated mannequin that obtained probably the most plaudits on appears alone was the ASUS. As we speak, in what seems to be a worldwide unique, we’ve got some hands-on entry to the ASUS Professional WS WRX80E-SAGE SE WiFi. Sure, it’s a mouthful to say.
Dang, This Factor is Heavy
Very first thing I observed when the motherboard was delivered was simply how heavy it’s. On the scales, the board and field comes to five.4 kg (11.9 lbs), and the board is most of that. I don’t even assume my heaviest laptop computer weighs that a lot, and it is a lot greater than the motherboard that ASUS made for Intel’s overclockable 28-core Xeon W-3175X a pair years in the past. It’s arduous to get throughout in phrases on a web page in regards to the weight, however put it this manner, it will possibly change some dumbbells that’s for positive.
A part of what makes this board so heavy is the dimensions, with this mannequin being a full prolonged ATX (E-ATX) unit, but in addition ASUS has in-built some correct rigidity assist and cooling. On the rear there’s a stiffening plate to make sure that the board doesn’t bend when giant coolers and add-in playing cards are getting used.
On the entrance the 16-phase energy supply has this large chunk of anodized metallic on prime of it that appears to have the ability to take in quite a lot of warmth vitality. I took this heatsink off the motherboard and weighed it, and it is available in at simply shy of 300 grams (0.6 lbs) by itself.
Transferring again to that 16-phase energy supply – ASUS has transposed the socket such that the airflow strikes throughout the board, by the reminiscence, and out of the panel IO. Which means the ability supply is aligned in another way on the board, and ASUS has offered greater than sufficient right here for the Threadripper Professional CPUs. The truth is, it is extremely a lot overkill – we see trendy 240 W EPYC techniques constructed with solely six phases per socket being a lot, so the truth that ASUS has gone for 16 right here, on a chip that doesn’t have CPU overclocking, appears a bit excessive. I suppose one consider that may be as a result of these boards gained’t at all times be in server-like builds, and might need to take care of a poor airflow shopper chassis. Although anybody shopping for this must be occupied with additionally getting a good case.
It must be famous that this motherboard is considerably distinctive by having three 8-pin CPU connectors, reasonably than the standard two. Most energy provides gained’t include sufficient cables or assist for 3 8-pin CPU connectors, so customers have to be cautious of this requirement. That being mentioned, out of the three headers on the board for these connectors, ASUS has seen match to strengthen two of them with extra armor assist, however not the third. I’m wondering if the 2 strengthened ones are literally those required for the CPU, and the third is for added energy to the motherboard.
Sticking with cooling, the chipset is roofed by a heatsink that’s considerably/however not likely related to the ability supply heatsink, and inside is a fan with a easy metallic grille on prime. Customers might need to get in right here to take away mud each every now and then, as I can see this grille being crammed with mud within the unsuitable environments.
Beneath this heatsink is the chipset, which has the code 100-CG3090. Now we all know that the X570 chipset has the code 100-CG3091, and the TRX40 chipset has the code 100-CG3089, so this appears very a lot to be a close to equivalent copy of a type of. Meaning eight lanes of PCIe 4.0 as much as the CPU for bandwidth, and a variety of choices coming from the chipset for added IO.
The socket on this board is a normal AMD giant LGA-4094 socket, as used with all earlier EPYC and TR processors so far, although clearly with the chipset this appears to be locked right down to TR Professional CPUs solely. Alongside the socket there are eight DDR4-3200 slots, enabling 8-channel reminiscence. Technically TR Professional helps as much as 2 TB of reminiscence, although solely in 2 DIMMs per channel mode, so probably the most customers can put in right here is probably going going to be 1 TB with 128 GB LRDIMMs (256 GB LRDIMMs exist, however are fairly uncommon).
With 128 PCIe 4.0 lanes, there are many connectivity choices. The simplest solution to see that is with the seven full PCIe 4.0 x16 slots on the board, all with strengthened slot armor. As a result of PCIe 4.0 has limitations on hint size in a PCB, ASUS has had to make use of some PCIe 4.0 repeaters to get the sign to the underside slots, however that’s all in-built and will work as anticipated. There are two 6-pin PCIe connectors on the motherboard to assist help the board in supplying 75W of energy to all of the slots ought to all of them be used without delay. Additionally utilizing PCIe lanes are the three M.2 slots supporting PCIe 4.0 x4 drives, and twin U.2 ports as effectively. There’s an Intel X550-AT2 chipset for twin 10 GbE on the rear panel additionally utilizing PCIe.
For storage, together with the twin U.2 and triple M.2 there are eight SATA ports. For of those come from the chipset, with the opposite 4 provided by ASMedia ASM1061 controllers.
On the rear panel, ASUS has enabled an entire set of USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10 Gbps) assist, with eight USB Kind-A ports and a Kind-C port. There’s a second Kind-C port, and this goes to twenty Gbps with USB 3.2 Gen 2×2. There’s no USB 2.0 on this rear panel! Alongside these ports are the twin 10 GbE networking ports, Wi-Fi 6 assist (we’re instructed there will likely be a model of this board with out Wi-Fi, for OEMs at the least), the Clear CMOS and BIOS Flashback buttons, and the audio outputs coming from the customized ASUS Realtek codec.
The rear panel additionally has its personal devoted air baffle and shroud to assist with cooling and air stream, with an extra fan situated within the again right here as effectively.
Sadly as a result of this was a fast loaner board indirectly from ASUS and we needed to give again instantly, it was requested that we don’t spend time testing the board. It’s maybe finest if we await ASUS’ press/retail pattern, reasonably than check this unit that truly belongs to an area OEM that’s designing techniques round it. I’d reasonably not have the chance for it to interrupt in my palms in that occasion!
Actual availability and pricing is unknown at this level. The final large motherboard ASUS did, for the W-3175X, was near round $1500 at retail, and the corporate simply introduced an $1800 motherboard for Z590, and so it’s arduous to put what precisely this TR Professional system will value, with all of the bells and whistles, however no want for overclocking. I’m going to assume that for a retail value it might be very a lot in that $1200-$1800 vary, if no more. Preliminary items may also be headed to OEMs first, so end-users seeking to construct their very own TR Professional techniques might need to attend a bit.
Fast Recap of AMD Ryzen Threadripper Professional CPUs
The title of ‘Threadripper Professional’ is a little bit of a misnomer – AMD is utilizing the title as a result of the Threadripper model already has traction within the markets these processors are geared toward, such because the rendering and animation studios already loaded up on TR however need extra reminiscence assist and PCIe lanes.
These new TR Professional CPUs are extra akin to ‘Workstation EPYC’, as they’re extra just like the EPYC processors (EPYC with increased TDP however barely lowered DRAM assist) reasonably than the Threadrippers (TR then add ECC assist, 8x DRAM assist, double PCIe 4.0, DASH manageability).
There are two essential processors as a part of this household, coming in at 64-core and 32-core. AMD has additionally seen the necessity to fill out the decrease rungs of the stack, with a 16-core and a reasonably odd 12-core mannequin. These are all based mostly on AMD’s Zen 2 structure, utilizing the TSMC N7 course of, are available in at 280 W TDP, and assist DDR4-3200, 128 lanes of PCIe 4.0, and the brand new WRX80 chipset.
|AMD Ryzen Threadripper Professional|
|3995WX||64 / 128||2700||4200||8 + 1||280 W||8 x DDR4-3200|
|3975WX||32 / 64||3500||4200||4 + 1||280 W||8 x DDR4-3200|
|3955WX||16 / 32||3900||4300||2 + 1||280 W||8 x DDR4-3200|
|3945WX||12 / 24||4000||4300||2 + 1||280 W||8 x DDR4-3200|
From our conversations with OEMs, the highest three processors are going to be what’s extensively obtainable. That distinctive 12-core variant appears to be an element for particular companions, with the OEMs I’ve been talking to not even having the prospect to order it from AMD (the choice is that the 12-core isn’t prepared but, which I discover arduous to consider).
Actual retail pricing for these processors has not been formally introduced, nevertheless it’s anticipated to fall in line someplace between the Threadripper and EPYC variants for those who have close to equivalent comparisons, or maybe barely above EPYC, given the 280W TDP. Meaning the 64-core TR Professional 3995WX is prone to be someplace above $3990 (the TR 3990X) and across the $4425 (EPYC 7702P). Some leaks have urged this mannequin will likely be nearer $5000, which can even be down to provide.
Launch date for these processors is anticipated to be sooner reasonably than later. AMD has already acknowledged that it will likely be launching its new EPYC 7003 ‘Milan’ collection processors in March, so I’d count on these elements to be made obtainable earlier than they announce the brand new enterprise structure.