AMD Zen 3 processors are on the exit ramp and availability is expected later this year. The new architecture will not be as revolutionary as the current one since the great evolution is expected for Zen 4, but improvements are expected in several sections to achieve a double-digit increase in instructions per cycle (IPC) and with this, says AMD, beat Intel in this section.
Yesterday we were talking about the Intel Z490 motherboards for Comet Lake-S processors and their past and future compatibility, today it is time to review the support that these AMD Zen 3 processors will have at the level of boards. The technical marketing executive, Robert Hallock has taken advantage of the announcement of the new B550 chipset to clarify the situation.
AMD promised in 2016 to support the AM4 socket for four years and has fulfilled, because it has used the same socket to support four generations, Excavator, Zen, Zen + and Zen 2, and in four different manufacturing processes, 28nm, 14nm, 12nm and 7nm. The number of cores has also increased considerably; memory bandwidth and PCIe interface up to 4.0 not yet offered by Intel.
For the AMD Zen 3 processors we have good news and some less good news. The new processors will be able to be installed on current motherboards with socket AM4 by means of a simple BIOS update, but only with the 500 series chipsets, X570 and the new B550. The bad news is that recent (and inexpensive) motherboards like the X470 are left out. It should be mentioned that we are talking about official AMD support, because in the past some plate manufacturers enabled it (example X370 plates for the Ryzen 3000), although they were not on the official list.
Although it must be recognized that in this section the support of AMD has been much better than that of Intel (and even more so with the commented expansion), we continue to demand a complete clarification from both manufacturers when a platform reaches the market, facilitating time and how it will be supported and / or a guarantee of longevity for the precise knowledge of the user.
AMD B550: for current AMD Zen 3 processors
The new B550 chipset is going to be a remarkable development for anyone who wants to use AMD processors without spending a fortune on the motherboard. It will support future AMD Zen 3 processors and current 3rd generation Ryzen «Matisse». The Ryzen 3000 “Picasso” APU is not supported and neither is the Ryzen 2000 or earlier.
It will offer major improvements over the B450 and take some of the benefits from its older brother X570. The most relevant is the PCIe 4.0 support both in the main graphics card slot and for M.2 NVMe SSD storage. The downgrade comes from the “general purpose lanes” and the upstream of the CPU chipset that will be PCI 3.0.
It will also support dual graphics and the latest USB 3.2 Gen2 standard, adding plenty of additional USB and SATA ports. The high-end B550s are expected to offer similar overclocking capabilities as the X570s do.
We’ll take a closer look at it when a launch is slated for June 16. AMD promises more than 60 designs from the main manufacturers and some contained prices that will begin in 100 dollars.