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Latest news on DV Hardware - Older stories
Intel finds root cause of reboot issue introduced by CPU bug patches January 22, 2018 - 18:58
ASRock and Gigabyte reveal passively cooled Intel Gemini Lake based boards January 22, 2018 - 12:54
AMD details Ryzen 3 2200G and Ryzen 5 2400G and confirms DDR4-2933 support January 22, 2018 - 12:03
Bitmain is buying 20k 16nm wafers from TSMC per month (more than NVIDIA) January 22, 2018 - 11:51
Denuvo 4.8 falls victim to crackers after nearly three months January 22, 2018 - 11:40
Linus Torvalds: Intel patches are architectural garbage January 22, 2018 - 11:20
Navigant: Tesla ranks last in driverless car race January 22, 2018 - 11:09
NVIDIA asks retailers to sell to gamers first January 20, 2018 - 10:42
Intel Core i3-8300 and Core i5-8500 ship on February 14 January 19, 2018 - 15:47
Microsoft creates AI that draws a picture based on text input January 19, 2018 - 15:33
Skyfall and Solace CPU attacks are likely fake January 19, 2018 - 13:57
der8auer Skylake-X Direct Die Frame lets you install a HSF without IHS January 19, 2018 - 13:46
TSMC: Cryptocurrency mining is now main growth driver January 19, 2018 - 13:36
SK Hynix ships 8Gb GDDR6 memory chips in up to 12Gbps and 14Gbps versions January 19, 2018 - 13:14
NZXT N7 Z370 motherboard already gets a $50 price cut (but drops the LED strips) January 19, 2018 - 12:47
AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition 18.1.1 fixes a bunch of bugs January 18, 2018 - 23:51
Analyst: Miners bought over $500 million worth of GPUs in Q4 2017 January 18, 2018 - 21:07
Still a lot of work needed to enable EUV for 5nm node January 18, 2018 - 18:20
ASML shipped a record 10 EUV machines in Q4 2017 January 18, 2018 - 15:10
AMD Ryzen 5 2600 and ASUS ROG Crosshair VII Hero get spotted January 18, 2018 - 14:38

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Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 18:58:41 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
INTC logo
Intel Data Center Group executive vice president Navin Shenoy issued a statement about the reboot issues that are caused by the fixes for the Meltdown and Spectre CPU vulnerabilities. The chip giant found the root cause for the Broadwell and Haswell platforms, and is working on a new update that will take care of the reboot issues. At the moment, Intel recommends customers and partners to stop deployment of current versions of the patch as they can cause not only unexpected reboots but also other unpredictable system behavior:
As we start the week, I want to provide an update on the reboot issues we reported Jan. 11. We have now identified the root cause for Broadwell and Haswell platforms, and made good progress in developing a solution to address it. Over the weekend, we began rolling out an early version of the updated solution to industry partners for testing, and we will make a final release available once that testing has been completed.

Based on this, we are updating our guidance for customers and partners:

  • We recommend that OEMs, cloud service providers, system manufacturers, software vendors and end users stop deployment of current versions, as they may introduce higher than expected reboots and other unpredictable system behavior. For the full list of platforms, see the Intel.com Security Center site.

  • We ask that our industry partners focus efforts on testing early versions of the updated solution so we can accelerate its release. We expect to share more details on timing later this week.

  • We continue to urge all customers to vigilantly maintain security best practice and for consumers to keep systems up-to-date.

    I apologize for any disruption this change in guidance may cause. The security of our products is critical for Intel, our customers and partners, and for me, personally. I assure you we are working around the clock to ensure we are addressing these issues.

    I will keep you updated as we learn more and thank you for your patience.

  • (comments?)

    Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 12:54:26 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    Three motherboards with an integrated Intel Gemini Lake chip hit the market, these are passively cooled and sport the Mini-ITX form factor.

    First up we have the J4005N D2P from Gigabyte, this model features the dual-core Celeron J4005 SoC with a 2.7GHz frequency. It has PCIe 2.0 x16, M.2, HDMI 2.0, and two SATA 6Gbps ports.
    GIGABYTE TECHNOLOGY Co. Ltd, a leading manufacturer of motherboards and graphics cards, has announced the release of new generation Gemini Lake based J/N series motherboards with the built-in latest Intel® Pentium® Silver/ Intel® Celeron® processors. With humidity protected glass fabric PCBs, long acting capacitors, anti-surge ICs, low resistance MOSFETS, and Ultra Durable components, GIGABYTE J/N series motherboards offer users reliable, high quality products as well as the ability to customize performance settings in order to maximize product value.

    GIGABYTE newest J/N series motherboards utilize fan less cooling solution and their built-in Intel® Gemini Lake processors make them perfect for compact, mainstream builds. The motherboards support HDMI 2.0 4K at 21:9 resolution for high definition video quality. Integrated PCIe Gen2 x2 M.2 slots supporting high speed NVMe SSD allows for fast data transfer speeds. The board’s native Intel WIFI via the M.2 Connector along with an independently sold Intel® CNVi wireless networking solution can make way for impressive wireless connectivity exceeding a gigabit. Additionally, its support for M.2 SATA SSD, UDIMM DDR4 modules rated for 2400MHz, and noise free configurations makes it a perfect option for school, business, and home usage. “Following the announcement of the newest Intel® Pentium® Silver and Celeron® Processors, GIGABYTE developed a series of motherboards that truly reflects the strength GIGABYTE and Intel’s ability to produce a product that brings the best of motherboard technology combined with Intel processor architecture,” GIGABYTE stated.

    GIGABYTE J/N Motherboards brings the best out of Intel® Pentium® Silver and Celeron® Processors while offering customers plenty of flexibility for customization such as the ability to change the SoC to one suitable for their demands. For more details on these motherboards, please visit the GIGABYTE official website or your local GIGABYTE retailer.
    J4005N D2P

    Next is the J4105B-ITX from ASRock, this product has the Celeron J4105 quad-core processor with a 2.5GHz frequency.
  • ASRock Super Alloy
  • Intel® Quad-Core Processor J4105 (up to 2.5 GHz)
  • Supports DDR4 2133/2400 SO-DIMM
  • 1 PCIe 2.0 x1, 1 M.2 (Key E)
  • Graphics Output Options: D-Sub, HDMI, DVI-D
  • 7.1 CH HD Audio (Realtek ALC892 Audio Codec), ELNA Audio Caps
  • 4 SATA3
  • 4 USB 3.1 Gen1 (2 Front, 2 Rear)
  • Supports Full Spike Protection, ASRock Live Update & APP Shop
  • J4105-ITX

    The company also offers the J4105B-ITX, which has slightly different specs.
  • ASRock Super Alloy
  • Intel® Quad-Core Processor J4105 (up to 2.5 GHz)
  • Supports DDR4 2133/2400 SO-DIMM
  • 1 PCIe 2.0 x16 (x2 mode)
  • Graphics Output Options: D-Sub, HDMI
  • 7.1 CH HD Audio (Realtek ALC887 Audio Codec), ELNA Audio Caps
  • 2 SATA3
  • 5 USB 3.1 Gen1 (2 Front, 3 Rear)
  • Supports Full Spike Protection, ASRock Live Update & APP Shop

  • (comments?)

    Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 12:03:26 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    AMD logo
    Somewhat unexpectedly, AMD revealed more specifications about its soon-to-be-released Ryzen desktop APUs. These chips were first made official at CES 2018, the initial lineup will include the Ryzen 3 2200G with Radeon Vega 8 graphics and the Ryzen 5 2400G with Radeon Vega 11 graphics.

    First up we have the Ryzen 3 2200G, this 14nm chip has four cores, four threads, a 3.5GHz base clock, 3.7GHz Turbo, and a 65W TDP (45-65W CTDP). You get the Vega 8 solution with 8 graphics cores and a 1.1GHz frequency. The specification sheet also reveals this kit includes the AMD Wraith Stealth cooler.

    Next is the Ryzen 5 2400G, this one also features the AMD Wraith Stealth cooler. The 2400G has four cores, eight threads, a 3.6GHz base clock, 3.9GHz Turbo, and a 65W TDP (45W-65W CTDP). The Radeon Vega 11 part features 11 graphics cores that are clocked at 1.25GHz.

    Both models have dual-channel DDR4-2933 support (max 64GB) and unlocked base clock multipliers. The support for higher DDR4 frequencies bodes well for the graphics performance, as these APUs do not have HBM2.

    The Ryzen 3 2200G will cost $99, while the Ryzen 5 2400g will sell for $169. Both chips should be available on February 12, 2018.

    Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 11:51:11 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    TSMC logo
    Cryptocurrency mining is becoming a huge business and it's astonishing how this impacts the whole supply chain. Gamers have to suffer from low availability and extremely high pricing in the retail channel, and now we're seeing that the larger players are going straight to the source by contracting TSMC to make their in-house ASICs using the latest process technology.

    We already touched on this a couple of days ago, but here's an interesting tweet from ARKInvest that shows just how large the crypto business is for TSMC. Bitmain, the largest Bitcoin miner on the planet, is now buying a whopping 20,000 16nm wafers a month from TSMC! That's double as much as in the previous quarter and a higher volume than what NVIDIA orders from TSMC.

    Dutch tech site Hardware.Info calculated that Bitcoin can get a maximum of 5,670 chips out of every wafer. In total, that would be enough for 600,000 Bitmain Antminer S9 systems per month, but the actual number will probably be lower as we don't know the yields.

    In total, TSMC pulled in $350 million to $400 million of revenue from cryptocurrency chips in the third quarter alone. Bloomberg notes that was about 4 to 5 percent of the foundry's revenue.


    Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 11:40:29 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    Denuvo logo
    It took a bit of time, but crackers finally managed to break the latest version of the Denuvo anti-tamper technology. Up until a couple of months ago, Denuvo got cracked in record time but version 4.8 kept lots of AAA-titles safe for nearly three months. That changed last week though, as crackers managed to crack Sonic Forces, which uses Steam and Denuvo 4.8. Basically, it remains an eternal cat and mouse game.
    Denuvo was able to protect the aforementioned titles for almost three months. That was a huge success and while its latest version has been cracked, there is only a crack for Sonic Forces. However, do note that this is a bypass crack. In other words, Denuvo is still running in the background, meaning that you should not see any performance gains in titles like Assassin’s Creed: Origins. Furthermore, Assassin’s Creed: Origins uses VMProtect on top of Denuvo 4.8, so it will be interesting to see whether this combo will make things harder for crackers (now that the latest version of the Denuvo has been cracked).
    Via: DSO Gaming

    Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 11:20:38 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    When Linus Torvald sees something he doesn't like, he's not afraid to speak his mind. In the past, he hasn't hesitated to call out developers for pulling crap into Linux 4.8, nor was he afraid to tell NVIDIA to go fuck itself. Over the weekend, the Linux founder took a look at some new Linux patches that are related to the Intel CPU bugs and called them "pure garbage".

    Slashdot has the meat over here, this is what Linus has to say about the new microcode that addresses Indirect Branch Restricted Speculation "where a future CPU will advertise 'I am able to be not broken' and then you have to set the IBRS bit once at boot time to *ask* it not to be broken:"
    Linus calls it "very much part of the whole 'this is complete garbage' issue. The whole IBRS_ALL feature to me very clearly says 'Intel is not serious about this, we'll have a ugly hack that will be so expensive that we don't want to enable it by default, because that would look bad in benchmarks'. So instead they try to push the garbage down to us. And they are doing it entirely wrong, even from a technical standpoint. I'm sure there is some lawyer there who says 'we'll have to go through motions to protect against a lawsuit'. But legal reasons do not make for good technology, or good patches that I should apply."

    Later Linus says forcefully that these "complete and utter garbage" patches are being pushed by someone "for unclear reasons" -- and adds another criticism.

    The whole point of having cpuid and flags from the microarchitecture is that we can use those to make decisions. But since we already know that the IBRS overhead is huge on existing hardware, all those hardware capability bits are just complete and utter garbage. Nobody sane will use them, since the cost is too damn high. So you end up having to look at "which CPU stepping is this" anyway. I think we need something better than this garbage.


    Posted on Monday, January 22 2018 @ 11:09:42 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    tsLa logo
    A new report by Navigant Research claims Tesla and Apple rank dead last in the self-driving car race. While Tesla is seen by many as one of the leaders in autonomous driving, Navigant is highly critical of Tesla's technology and points out the company's technology is regressing.

    The first Autopilot from Tesla used Mobileye technology, but that solution got dumped in favor of NVIDIA chips. The result is that one year after the launch of Autopilot V2, the system still lacks some features of the original. In the meantime, Tesla is working on its own self-driving car chips, which reportedly include some IP licensed from AMD.

    The Navigant report claims GM and Waymo currently have the best self-driving car tech:
    Navigant ranked the 19 major companies developing AV technology based on 10 criteria, including vision, market strategy, partnerships, production strategy, technology, product quality and staying power. According to the report, General Motors Co. (GM) and Waymo, the auto unit of Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL), are the top two AV investment opportunities in the market today.
    More details at US News.

    Posted on Saturday, January 20 2018 @ 10:42:59 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    NVIDIA logo
    With cryptocurrency mining profitability remaining at all-time highs, video cards from AMD and NVIDIA are selling out like hot cakes as miners buy up all the inventory. The result is that gamers once again have a lot of trouble to get a video card, and have to cough up prices that can be over double as high as the recommended retail price.

    Some retailers are now offering GeForce cards with certain limits, like a maximum of two cards per customer. German tech site ComputerBase reports this measure was implemented at the request of NVIDIA. The site received a statement from NVIDIA spokesperson Boris Böhles, which clarifies that NVIDIA wants gamers to come first:
    " For NVIDIA, gamers come first. All activities related to our GeForce product line are targeted at our main audience. To ensure that GeForce gamers continue to have good GeForce graphics card availability in the current situation, we recommend that our trading partners make the appropriate arrangements to meet gamers' needs as usual. "
    NVIDIA stresses that this is just a recommendation, the company can't and will not intervene in the freedom and independence of trade.

    Whether NVIDIA's request has a major impact is unknown. It may help to prevent orders in the three-digit order of magnitude from miners, but the problem doesn't reside exclusively at the retail level. The larger miners (and their suppliers) buy cards straight from the factory, and screw on custom coolers.

    Posted on Friday, January 19 2018 @ 15:47:41 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    INTC logo
    Word hit the web that the next batch of new Coffee Lake-S desktop processors will hit retail shelves around February 14. Acccording to an Australian e-tailer, we'll see the launch of various Celeron, Pentium, Core i3 and Core i5 CPUs on Valentine's Day. Pricing of these chips ranges from 64 to 329 AUD, which corresponds to about $51 to $264.
    The Pentium G5000 series are quad-core and quad-thread CPUs with base clock varying from 3.7 GHz to 3.9 GHz and 4MB of cache.

    The cheapest Coffeelake processors will be Celeron G4920 and G4900, which are dual-core and dual-thread CPUs listed with 2MB cache.

    Additionally, Intel will launch Intel i5-8600 non-K for the slightly lower price than the overclockable variant. This SKU will be joined by i5-8500 and i3-8300.
    Via: VideoCardz

    Posted on Friday, January 19 2018 @ 15:33:36 CET by Thomas De Maesschalck
    Microsoft researchers published a paper about a new AI agent they call the drawing bot. The algorithm draws images pixel by pixel, based on nothing more than the text input of a user. Basically, you tell this thing to draw a bird, specify the color and some other aspects and the drawing bot will generate an image from scratch. It is the most advanced text-to-image system currently in existence.
    The new artificial intelligence technology under development in Microsoft’s research labs is programmed to pay close attention to individual words when generating images from caption-like text descriptions. This deliberate focus produced a nearly three-fold boost in image quality compared to the previous state-of-the-art technique for text-to-image generation, according to results on an industry standard test reported in a research paper posted on arXiv.org.

    The technology, which the researchers simply call the drawing bot, can generate images of everything from ordinary pastoral scenes, such as grazing livestock, to the absurd, such as a floating double-decker bus. Each image contains details that are absent from the text descriptions, indicating that this artificial intelligence contains an artificial imagination.
    Pretty interesting stuff, you can learn more at the Microsoft Blog.

    TSMC logo

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