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[Thread] AMD/Intel CPU 2019

EvilDragon

KSP Wizard
All I'm interested in are ScanAudioPro's DAW benchmarks. I'm still thinking there's going to be NUMA latency overheads for Zen 2 as well, probably even exacerbated because of the chiplet design. Which means at lowest latencies you won't be able to fully saturate the CPU cores like you can on Intels, which means you'd get clicks and dropouts at 60-70% CPU usage (rather than closer to 100% like on Intels).
 
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EvilDragon

KSP Wizard
I don't think they nailed it, they keep on adding more cores tied to the master I/O core, which is more or less exactly how multiple physical CPUs on a single motherboard would behave, which means NUMA latency is very much a thing, and IS going to impact real-time performance... They would need to completely overhaul the way their CPUs are designed to combat this, I fear (and that's probably not happening, they're going to milk this design for as long as they possibly can)...
 

funnybear

Member
There are a few new variables that will potentially improve Zen 2's performance for real-time low buffer audio quite a bit:
  • At the right ram speed, the communication between cpu cores / dies (AMD calls this the Infinity Fabric) is now much better. AMD has specified DDR4-3733 ram as locking in a 1:1 ratio where you get optimal timings.
  • With the May 2019 Windows 10 update, the Windows core / thread scheduler has been greatly improved especially for Zen 2. This means assigning cores / threads to workloads is more intelligent and clock-speed rump-up latency has improved greatly.
Also, the pricing of the 16 core 3950X is about half of the Intel equivalent. So even if you can't saturate the CPU to the same level as on the Intel CPU (to be seen), you are potentially getting a much better value CPU especially if you are using your PC for other things such as programming or media encoding.

Let's also not forget that Intel's CPUs are continuing to be subject to performance degradation from security patches addressing the various side-loading vulnerabilities, most which do not affect AMD. For example, to run the 9900k securely post Zombieload, you now need to disable hyper-threading and apply a patch that has a substantial performance impact. The way Intel has implemented hyper threading makes it likely that there are plenty of additional vulnerabilities found down the road. AMD's design is different and seems not to be as vulnerable.

Let's see the test results once the chips are out in July but on paper I am quite optimistic.
 

tack

Damned Dirty Ape
you now need to disable hyper-threading and apply a patch that has a substantial performance impact.
Something none of us here should do on our desktops, IMO. Cloud vendors in shared environments, yes. Our PCs at home, there are far easier and more problematic attack vectors than those based on speculative execution.

The 3950X and its 105W TDP are really appealing to me. I have a 2950X now and I'm generally very happy with it, but my case is optimized for noise and not airflow, so PBO isn't quite able to do all that it might. With a lower TDP, slightly higher clocks, and IPC gains, that's a tempting upgrade.
 

funnybear

Member
These vulnerabilities apply not only to cloud / server environments.

There have been plenty of proof of concepts been shown in how to read out passwords and other sensitive data from memory segments owned by other threads running in multi-threading mode. There was even one example were this was done with JavaScript in Chrome until a Google patched this. So simply by visiting a web page any passwords in memory were read out.

If you never do anything but run music apps on your PC (from trusted sources), then I guess you are fine though.
 

Virtual Virgin

Active Member
While I find AMD Ryzen specs rather tempting, my concerns echo Evil Dragon here.
What kind of benchmarks do we have out there for audio RTL running on AMD chips?
It's the one performance measure I just can't sacrifice.
 

EvilDragon

KSP Wizard
So simply by visiting a web page any passwords in memory were read out.
Well, if you keep your web browser up to date you should be fine. And anyways, why would you go on any dubious websites in the first place, and especially on your DAW? :)

I agree with tack, HT is to be left enabled on audio workstations.
 
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Manaberry

Manaberry

Active Member
Something none of us here should do on our desktops, IMO. Cloud vendors in shared environments, yes. Our PCs at home, there are far easier and more problematic attack vectors than those based on speculative execution.
Yes and no. In my case, windows patches and microcode for CPU broke my overclocking. I can't fix it now. I'm having a 3.6 Ghz that struggle so much running my VE-Pro template instead of a solid 4.2Ghz. And I clearly see the difference. It's quite huge!
So yeah, no more Intel and their vulnerable chips.
 

Damarus

Active Member
  • At the right ram speed, the communication between cpu cores / dies (AMD calls this the Infinity Fabric) is now much better. AMD has specified DDR4-3733 ram as locking in a 1:1 ratio where you get optimal timings.
This would make sense, as Ryzen benchmarks have seen better performance with faster RAM. But at what cost? At the moment, 3733mhz RAM is nearly double the price of 3000/3200. That certainly closes the gap a bit on CPU Value.
 

funnybear

Member
Well, if you keep your web browser up to date you should be fine. And anyways, why would you go on any dubious websites in the first place, and especially on your DAW? :)
Yeah, Google is good at patching quickly.

But unfortunately these days a lot of ads distributed via legitimate ad networks include JavaScript payloads that get downloaded without any vetting at all from the ad network.

You can get exposed on completely legit websites that run ads from networks that have no ability to vet what code the ad includes (the immersive ads - not banner ads). The volume of ads run makes it impossible to audit every line of code that advertisers use.

I personally apply all patches and mitigations. I have lost at least 20% performance over the last year from doing so. Unless Intel pulls a rabbit out of the hat, I am eying Threadripper 3000 as my next system.
 

EvilDragon

KSP Wizard
uBlock Origin and NoScript. No ads ever, and no scripts ran without your consent. Blissful Internet! :)

I personally apply all patches and mitigations. I have lost at least 20% performance over the last year from doing so.
I have a knife and I'm going to cut my arm off so I can do less work because somebody else told me to.


This is not what I'd do with my audio workstation, even if it's online. It's meant to perform, and perform well. :)

I think some DAWs work better with HT turned off.
Those DAWs suck. :P

In my case, windows patches and microcode for CPU broke my overclocking. I can't fix it now.
You can revert pretty much all Windows-side mitigations IIRC. Google it.
 
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oivind_rosvold

Active Member
Seeing as Chrome (google) will not allow uBlock (or any adblock) to work 'as is' much longer, i have transition to Brave + duckduckgo or startpage for search.
No adds, no tracking, auto https, etc built inn and won't be affected by Google's new anti adblock sillyness. Firefox is also a decent alternative, though you will need to turn some things on manually.

The new AMD lineup does look impressive. Should be interesting to see where it lies on the 256 buffer area.
 
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tack

Damned Dirty Ape
The 3950X and its 105W TDP are really appealing to me. I have a 2950X now [...]
I just realized the 3950X uses an AM4 socket, not TR4 like my 2950X. Lisa Su has said they were going to continue the Threadripper line this year, so now I wonder what that's going to look like.
 
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Manaberry

Manaberry

Active Member
You can revert pretty much all Windows-side mitigations IIRC. Google it.
I already broke my windows two weeks ago. I had to reinstall everything. I'm not going to give another shot. I will be patient and wait for a brand new cpu and motherboard first :P
 
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