Hardware news for the last week includes discussion on an inadvertent NZXT H700i case unveil (with “machine learning,” apparently), Ryzen/Vega APU, Vega partner card availability, and Coffee Lake availability.
Minor news items include the AMD AGESA 22.214.171.124 update to support Raven Ridge & Pinnacle Ridge, Noctua’s Chromax fans, and some VR news – like Oculus dropping its prices – and the Pimax 8K VR configuration.
Find the video and show notes below:
Where Are Vega Partner Cards?
Vega partner cards are still sort of on hold. Speaking with the AIB partners with cards in the wings, we’ve learned – once again – that the delay is largely a matter of limited inventory. AIB partners are trying to stockpile enough boards and GPUs to meet channel needs by suppliers and distributors, namely the ability to set a firm restock date (i.e. “we can guarantee a restock in x weeks”). Board partners are waiting on AMD to supply more Vega GPUs for production, at this point. We aren’t sure what specifically is causing the shortage to board partners, but we do know that AMD has Vega wrapped-up in a number of projects: Apple integration and compute integration could be tapping some of the supply, cost/return could be a concern with Vega 56, and switching from ASE to other packaging services could be causing delays.
We do not have any firm dates or release targets from the AIB partners right now.
AMD AGESA 126.96.36.199 Raven Ridge APU
Elmor of ASUS stated the following: “AGESA 1007 comes with support for Raven Ridge APUs. AMD has also changed the entire BIOS base structure, so we have to do a lot of work to port everything to the new version, which may result in further bugs. The advantage is that it makes it easier to support future CPUs (Raven Ridge, Pinnacle Ridge). The cold boot fix will be implemented as soon as we have a recent AGESA version which supports it.”
VideoCardz captured a screenshot of an HP Envy x360 2-in-1 notebook page earlier, which has since been taken offline. HP inadvertently published specifications for its new Envy notebook, detailing the included processor as an AMD Ryzen 5 2500U quad-core component, operating at 2GHz base and 3.6GHz boost, with 6MB of cache. More interestingly, the graphics section lists “Integrated AMD Radeon Vega M Graphics” as the solution, marking the first semi-official appearance of Vega in a notebook.
For anyone seeking Coffee Lake stock, retailer Silicon Lottery has listed its delidded i3-8350K CPUs from $180 to $310, ranging 4.8GHz to 5.2GHz overclock bins. Newegg’s retail price of the i3-8350K is about $178, so the 4.8GHz chips are sold close to normal retail price, though the markup on the 5.2GHz units is obviously insane for a normal consumer – could be useful in specific benchmarking applications, but that money would obviously be better spent toward an 8700K or similar 1700. Speaking of, availability of the 8700K still seems to be targeting October 27th.
NZXT’s unannounced H700i case was posted on Overclockers.co.uk ahead of schedule, and later picked-up by the Overclock.net forums. The H700i case looks to be a mid-tower chassis that fuses H440 and S340 design elements, with a heavy focus on cable management features rear-side. Cable routing channels exist along the backside of the case, with the S340’s cable management bar making a return in a more stylistic fashion. The main compartment includes a fan hub, and the case supposedly includes a, quote, “unique CAM-powered smart device that digitally drives RGB lighting and fan performance.” Interestingly, the listing highlights adaptive noise reduction and “machine learning” for ideal fan settings. We presently have no idea what that means.
It looks like the case might include four Aer F 120mm fans, with pricing not fully known. The OCUK listing has the case at $200 GBP, but US prices may be different when considering VAT and other pricing swings.
Noctua’s new Chromax line offers color DLC packs for their existing products. The packs ship with colorized rubber corner add-ons for the fans, including red, blue, green, yellow, white, and black, with a new kit of fans now shipping in black variants. The fans are just black-out versions of the existing NF-A14, A15, and F12 fans, with NF-S12A PWM fans also in the mix. Colorized extension cables and heatsink shrouds are also included, with the latter under the NA-HC naming.
The cable extensions are 4.5” long and cost $10 USD each, giving Noctua some killer margins. The heatsink shrouds cost $30 and the fans range from $23 to $27.