AMD and Lenovo have created the world’s first 64-core workstation

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Threadripper Professional is the second new workstation platform launched just lately – and this one’s positively coming this yr.

New workstation platforms are just like the proverbial London buses it appears – you wait years for a one after which two arrive in shut proximity to one another.

I’m utilizing ‘shut proximity’ right here to imply inside a month of one another. On the finish of June, Apple introduced it was aspiring to ditch Intel in favour of developing its own ARM-based chips, which can ultimately be utilized in its high-end workstation, the Mac Professional.

Lenovo isn’t doing something as dramatic as chopping ties with Intel, however it’s the first vendor to create a workstation based mostly on AMD’s new Threadripper Professional platform – the ThinkStation P620 – which might be unique to Lenovo for “some time” says the corporate.

So alongside the debut of a strong new workstation, the information right here is that for the primary time in a very long time, there may be competitors between rival workstation-class platforms. And as we’ve seen over a few years throughout each artistic {hardware} and software program, competitors provokes innovation. From the DTP battles of 20 years in the past (Quark vs InDesign) by video enhancing (Avid vs Premiere Professional vs Remaining Reduce Professional) to thin-and-light laptops (Dell XPS/Precision vs Apple’s MacBook Professional) – a single dominant platform results in stagnation, which advantages no-one.

The workstation market hasn’t been fully with out competitors, however Intel’s Xeon platform has primarily been cannibalised by its client chips, or by AMD’s client model of Threadripper – which can be out there in a 64-core model, however not by Dell, HP or Lenovo. Now, hopefully, we see the start of a brand new workstation-focussed efficiency race.

02 thinkstation p620 hero front facing left thekoffeetable

The ThinkStation P620 is aimed toward visible results and 3D artists with the best efficiency calls for – Lenovo says that real-time 8K video enhancing might be potential on higher-end fashions. Potential prospects could also be cautious of shopping for into a brand new platform, however the platform does seem to supply an enormous quantity of efficiency for a comparatively low price in comparison with Intel’s Xeon. Lenovo says that the P620 might be considerably cheaper than a dual-processor Intel Xeon system, which tops out at 56 cores throughout each chips to the Threadripper Professional’s max of 64.

Nonetheless, Lenovo’s solely supplying pricing for a base mannequin at this level – and US pricing solely. A base P620 will price US$4,599 (round £3,665). This contains an AMD Threadripper Professional W3945W with 12 cores operating at 4GB, 16GB RAM, a 256GB M.2 SSD, an NVIDIA Quadro P620 GPU, keyboard and mouse, Home windows 10 Professional and a 3 yr on-site guarantee.

You may improve this with a 16, 32 and 64-core processors. The bottom chip speeds drop as extra cores are added – 3.9, 3.5 and a couple of.7GHz – however the max frequency stays at 4.2 or 4.3GHz throughout the board.

10 thinkstation p620 interior shot thekoffeetable

The P620 helps as much as 1TB of ECC RAM, with eight lanes (to the buyer Threadripper platform”s 4 lanes). There are 128GB PCIe 4.0 lanes. Lenovo says that PCIe 4.0 m.2 drives provide double the throughput of programs with third-generation drives. As much as 20TB of storage is feasible – and the P620 can maintain as much as two Nvidia RTX 8000 or 4 RTX 4000 graphics playing cards.

Workstations just like the P620 depend on {qualifications} from software program distributors. To this point the one distributors qualifying the P620 are Adobe for Artistic Cloud, Autodesk for 3ds max and Maya, and Avid for Media Composer – although this checklist is predicted to develop.

We’re anticipating a evaluation unit within the close to future, and I am excited to see the way it performs – and, maybe extra importantly, what a future that pits AMD, Apple and Intel towards one another on the high-end appears to be like like.

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