- The new AMD CPUs will offer support for USB 4.0, a standard that includes support for Thunderbolt 3.
- That means native eGPU support for AMD-powered laptops.
- One last Intel stronghold will fall when AMD launches Ryzen 7000: eGPU via Thunderbolt.
I’m not a big fan of eGPUs, mainly because they are costly for what’s basically a small metal case with a power supply. They shouldn’t cost more than $100, but on Amazon, they start at around triple that amount.
If you factor in the cost of the GPU, the MSRP price, not the current crazy high scores, you can actually get a nice gaming PC instead of an eGPU. And it will also be faster, not just cheaper.
But that doesn’t mean that with adoption prices wouldn’t get lower for eGPUs.
Now the only thing to fix is the 4x PCI-E 3.0 connection, a serious bottleneck for modern GPUs that use a 16x PCI-E 4.0 link when mounted inside a PC case. Some manufacturers upgraded their version of eGPU to an 8x link, but that was a custom cable and port, so not really usable with Thunderbolt.
That’s why I’m happy to hear that the next-gen Ryzen 7000 Rembrandt CPUs, due to launch in early 2022, will come with USB 4 support, which by default includes support for PCI Express tunneling, aka Thunderbolt3, a technology that’s proprietary to Intel, but somehow included in the USB4 standard.
With a new socket and DDR5 support, it seems AMD’s new platform will be a serious upgrade over the existing Ryzen 5000 series.
What do you think? Are we going towards widespread eGPU adoption, or is it just another new “thing” that will fade quickly?
Update: in a confusing move that didn’t take anyone by surprise, the next-gen AMD CPUs will be the 7000 series. AMD 6000 series is the current-gen laptop series based on the desktop 5000 series. Yeap, history repeats itself, where the 3000 series for desktop gave birth to the 4000 mobile series lineup.