Area-51 Threadripper Edition abducts every one of AMD’s many-core CPUs

AMD is setting the high-end processor market abuzz this year with its Threadripper CPUs, and Alienware is getting in on the game by sewing up the exclusive OEM launch partner spot for those many-core chips. Among prebuilt PCs, the upcoming Area-51 Threadripper Edition will be the only way to get up to 16 Zen cores and 32 threads in a system from a major manufacturer until the end of the year, according to PCWorld. DIYers will still be able to build a Threadripper system from scratch, though. Alienware says the Threadripper Edition will come factory-overclocked across all of its cores, but that's about all the company is revealing about the system at this time.

Decidedly extraterrestrial graphics cards for 2017

For those whose tastes run toward Romulan ale instead of Klingon bloodwine, Alienware will also offer an Area-51 system powered by Intel's many-core Core X chips. The Threadripper Edition will go up for order July 27, while the Core X-powered Area-51 will blast off on August 22. Pricing information remains to be annouced, but given Alienware's pedigree, you can bet the prices will be out of this world.

Comments closed
    • BaronMatrix
    • 2 years ago

    Interesting… This doesn’t mention 12C chips… But then these will make better workstations than gaming boxes… Three GPUs with full x16 is crazy…

    • southrncomfortjm
    • 2 years ago

    Alienware is a gaming brand, but the Threadripper really isn’t a gaming CPU. This makes sense not does.

      • Chrispy_
      • 2 years ago

      I dunno; If you want 3x PCIe x16 GPUs, and two NVMe over PCIe 4x SSDs, then you’re up to a minimum requirement of 56 PCIe lanes. Threadripper’s 64 lanes is enough, Intel’s current 40 or 28 lanes is not.

      Sure, Threadripper can’t run a single thread as fast as Kaby Lake, but it’s not likely to be [i<]that[/i<] much slower if it can turbo cores up like Ryzen does. We know that in many games that the GPU is the bottleneck rather than the CPU. Running three GPUs without PCIe bandwidth issues might actually be more important than having a per-thread performance advantage. It's all going to depend on the game, and how well the game has been optimised to take advantage of additional GPUs.

        • southrncomfortjm
        • 2 years ago

        Fair and valid points. Multi-GPU, especially 3+, is not something I consider since it’s less than a 1% use case. But I can see how in that scenario a system like this may be better.

          • Chrispy_
          • 2 years ago

          Personally, I dislike the issues caused by having more than one GPU.

          This sort of setup is for those nutjobs who want to run a videowall made of 4K monitors and then expect AAA games to run at >60fps

            • the
            • 2 years ago

            Both nVidia and AMD have been doing some tweaking on how their GPUs scale with additional cards. nVidia’s Pascal chips got a new, higher bandwidth version of SLI but soon after launch nVidia crippled SLI support to just two cards for most things. The big Quadro GP100 is unique in nVidia’s line up as the only card to support nvLink and have a monitor output. How that scales is an unknown as I haven’t seen any sort of 3rd party testing (and at ~$9000 a piece, likely not going to happen soon). AMD still supports Crossfire over PCIe and a Vega + Threadripper combination looks to be a potent combination. AMD may even want to open up to beyond four GPUs as ThreadRipper could support seven GPUs with an 8x link while still have enough spare PCIe lanes for a single M.2 card and chipset. If you got money, power and sanity to burn, this might be appealing.

        • Kretschmer
        • 2 years ago

        This seems like a silly combo for the following reasons:
        1) Anyone who is willing to pay for three GPUs won’t be willing to settle for 60 FPS
        2) According to TR’s own benchmarks, Ryzen can’t hit 100 FPS in all existing games
        3) Threadripper is going to be clocked lower than the R7 1800X

        I mean, besides 3 GPUs being silly in and of itself.

    • ronch
    • 2 years ago

    Wait a minute, doesn’t Dell own Alienware? This isn’t the first time AMD screwed all its other partners for Dell now, is it?

    • ronch
    • 2 years ago

    Great way to alienate yourself from your other OEM partners, AMD.

      • K-L-Waster
      • 2 years ago

      What other OEM partners?

        • ronch
        • 2 years ago

        Er… um…

      • Anonymous Coward
      • 2 years ago

      Dell also signed up to sell Ryzen in those AIO systems and a traditional tower, I think AMD and Dell have something going here.

    • Unknown-Error
    • 2 years ago

    Clarification: – [url<]http://www.pcworld.com/article/3197759/computers/amd-threadripper-exclusive-only-alienwares-area-51-will-have-it-in-2017.html[/url<] [quote<][i<] [b<]Clarification:[/b<] We've clarified our initial story, which overstated Alienware's exclusive access. Smaller boutique OEMs will indeed be able to build Threadripper-based PCs at launch. [/i<][/quote<]

    • Kougar
    • 2 years ago

    Should stick with good old Saurian brandy. For everyone else, prune juice.

    • Dposcorp
    • 2 years ago

    Honor-less fools; you all deserve “Discommendation” for your weak drink recommendations.
    [url<]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5c2etjMl3WM[/url<] Everyone knows you should be drinking Raktajino, [url<]http://memory-beta.wikia.com/wiki/Raktajino[/url<]

      • Bomber
      • 2 years ago

      No, everyone knows a true warrior drinks prune juice!

      [url<]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LgzbKe6_DN4[/url<]

    • NoOne ButMe
    • 2 years ago

    Most Boutiques aren’t OEMs, I believe. Everyone…

    Or do I read OEM to literally?

      • Redocbew
      • 2 years ago

      The only way it makes any sense to apply the term “OEM” to companies like Dell is for the PC its self to be the “equipment” that they’re manufacturing.

        • the
        • 2 years ago

        Well Alienware is owned by Dell…

      • Liron
      • 2 years ago

      IIRC, they call themselves an OED. (designer)

      (Still, they qualify as OEMs with Microsoft)

    • JosiahBradley
    • 2 years ago

    LOL at that naked RAM. Where’s the gaming heatsink? Also 3 GPUs? Must be AMD cards as nVidia stopped supporting 3way SLI. Who wants 16 cores paired with 3 580s? Or maybe just maybe they just leaked what Vega looks like.

    Edit: For those of you down voting me, Dell confirmed it’s 3 580s. If Chucky had made this post you’d have eaten it up because he’s the class clown. Where’s the funny bone people?

      • Bauxite
      • 2 years ago

      Naked ram in non-bottom-tier systems often an indicator of ECC, maybe even registered. 2 things you won’t be seeing on socket 2066 at all apparently.

      The latter is pretty much required for larger ram sizes with >1DPC, 8x16GB unbuffered is kindof hard to pull off reliably on ddr4, especially in mass production. The former is recommended if you give a crap about the integrity of your big data sitting in ram.

      Sadly I’m pretty sure I can count 8 chips per dimm, though the whole picture seems a bit rendered or retouched. Just about any unbuffered module at >2400 speeds come laden with useless blingfluff “heatsinks”.

      • the
      • 2 years ago

      It isn’t Vega. AMD dropped Crossfire tabs with the R9 290 and you can clearly see a spot for a card-to-card connector. The GPU heat sink also reminds me of a [url=https://techreport.com/gallery/18682/nvidia-geforce-gtx-480-and-470-graphics-processors/41629/gtx-470-card-1600<]GTX 470[/url<] due to the slimmer fan vs. the thicker heat sink.

        • chuckula
        • 2 years ago

        With all the AMD cards having been sold off for mining, they are clearly desperate to put in anything that will fit the box.

        I can see the wood screws!

      • RAGEPRO
      • 2 years ago

      Click the link on the picture caption guys.

        • stefem
        • 2 years ago

        Wrong, try again… they are clearly GTX 200 series cards [url<]https://techreport.com/review/16229/nvidia-geforce-gtx-285-and-295-graphics-cards[/url<]

          • BurntMyBacon
          • 2 years ago

          They certainly look the part … with the exception of the 8 pin + 6 pin connector. The GTX 200 series cards in your link have 2×6 pin connectors. The link in the caption is also has a GTX 280, but it does in fact have an 8 pin + 6 pin setup.

          [i<]Both of your links refer to GTX 280s. What was he wrong about again?[/i<]

            • stefem
            • 2 years ago

            They corrected the link, the original one pointed to the GTX 400 series cards 🙂

      • NoOne ButMe
      • 2 years ago

      Vivante is making desktop GPUs now methinks?
      Or Qualcomm or Imagination or Samsung or Apple or Via or ARM

      • Pwnstar
      • 2 years ago

      No, I would have down-voted Chuckula, too.

        • chuckula
        • 2 years ago

        ME THREE!

    • ultima_trev
    • 2 years ago

    This doesn’t seem like a smart move on AMD’s part.

    Maingear, Origin, Falcon Northwest, iBuyPower, HP Omen (formerly Voodoo PC) are big time players too and cutting them out seems counter-intuitive.

    RIP AMD

      • curtisb
      • 2 years ago

      Could also be that none of them were beating down AMD’s door to get the exclusive. It could also be that the margins are so thin that Alienware was the only one willing to commit to a product that’s very much going to have a very niche market.

      And according to the article it’s only exclusive until the end of the year. And finally, Threadripper isn’t even available for purchase yet, so that’s even less time it’ll be exclusive to Alienware.

      • slowriot
      • 2 years ago

      My understanding reading the PC World suggests all of those you mentioned except HP will still be able to offer systems. HP and Lenovo for sure would be here. Probably Acer, Asus, MSI too won’t have Threadripper.

      But it also begs the question of say that new NZXT BLD offering or what about Corsair and their venture into pre-built systems. Would they be excluded? Honestly no clue really.

      • K-L-Waster
      • 2 years ago

      The only one of those that could meaningfully be grouped with Dell (Alienware’s parent company) is HP, and even they are a long way off Dell.

      The combined sales for the rest of the put together are probably smaller a rounding error in Dell’s accounting.

      • BaronMatrix
      • 2 years ago

      These are not high-volume mainstream parts… The 16C will probably crack $1000…

    • whm1974
    • 2 years ago

    Niche product. How many gamers will actually buy this?

      • chuckula
      • 2 years ago

      Who cares about the gamers. If they put in three Rx 480s then the coin miners will spend $5000, take out the GPUs, and throw the rest in the dumpster!

        • whm1974
        • 2 years ago

        Nooo!!! If they are going to do that then give me the rest of system.

    • chuckula
    • 2 years ago

    [quote<]Among prebuilt PCs, the upcoming Area-51 Threadripper Edition will be the only way to get up to 16 Zen cores and 32 threads in a system from a major manufacturer until the end of the year, according to PCWorld.[/quote<] You wanted AMD in Dells you got it.... in fact, that's all you get for a while.

    • derFunkenstein
    • 2 years ago

    [quote<] For those whose tastes run toward Romulan ale [/quote<] I only use it [url=https://youtu.be/NLqSF8B0UB4?t=1m42s<]for medicinal purposes[/url<]

      • Redocbew
      • 2 years ago

      Let’s hope there’s a good [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cTuD6xf-ync<]drinking song[/url<] to go with it.

        • derFunkenstein
        • 2 years ago

        The thing that always bugged me about alien music and art in Star Trek is how much it resembled Earth’s western culture. That’s a very western-sounding tune. There’s a very definite cadence (meaning [url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cadence_(music)<]chords and voice leading[/url<], not a drum line) to that tune.

          • Beahmont
          • 2 years ago

          Oh please you speciest. Everyone knows that is an original Klingon musical cadence! Next you’ll be trying to tell us that human invented Shakespeare!

            • derFunkenstein
            • 2 years ago

            [url=http://tradukka.com/translate/en/tlh?hl=en<]toH chu'.[/url<]

          • rechicero
          • 2 years ago

          It’s the other way around. For example, you have not experienced Shakespeare until you read it in the original Klingon.

            • Mr Bill
            • 2 years ago

            [url=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RF0k4qV1I1Y<]Hamlet[/url<]

          • sreams
          • 2 years ago

          Klingons aren’t from Earth. Eastern culture would have been equally inappropriate.

        • CuttinHobo
        • 2 years ago

        The song goes especially well with chilled prune juice.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 2 years ago

          There’s another phrase that totally messes me up. Prunes are dried plums. They shouldn’t HAVE any juice.

            • CuttinHobo
            • 2 years ago

            I agree, and that has always bothered me about the name of my favorite plum – more often than not it’s called the Italian prune. Why is it called a prune in its natural juicy state? Consistency, people!

            • ludi
            • 2 years ago

            Not necessarily…a “prune” is a few varieties of plum tree producing smallish fruit, and those fruit are often called “prune plums” or, in ye olde times, “prunes.”

            The dried form is best known but the entymology is confused in both directions due to the Latin origin (prunum) and varying usage over the past few centuries.

    • slowriot
    • 2 years ago

    The exclusivity deal has me scratching my head a bit but.. I’m thinking this is indicative of the AMD’s supply limitations. Curious what that could mean for Threadripper supply in general for persona builders.

    Also one of those times when I feel I have a dozen questions on exactly the logistics of such a deal work, just who exactly qualifies for the “OEM” distinction, etc.

      • smilingcrow
      • 2 years ago

      Decided by volume I imagine as doubt either party care about 4th tier OEMs that buy CPUs from wholesalers rather than direct from AMD.

        • chuckula
        • 2 years ago

        Alienware may be annoying but it’s owned by Dell. Dell isn’t a fourth-tier OEM (at least by volume).

          • smilingcrow
          • 2 years ago

          The point being that you will be able to buy Threadripper systems from fourth tier OEMs as they aren’t “major manufacturers” so not competing with Dell’s exclusive deal.
          Dell aren’t buying CPUs from wholesalers.

            • chuckula
            • 2 years ago

            That should be true since they will have to pay full price and not Dell Price.
            I’m thinking of Cyperpower PC and the like. The markups will be Epyc.

    • Sahrin
    • 2 years ago

    Dellienware*

      • aspect
      • 2 years ago

      Mehlienware

        • Ari Atari
        • 2 years ago

        Who wants to be a millienware?

          • ronch
          • 2 years ago

          Why make billions when you can make… millions?

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