Whitehaven could be AMD’s 16-core answer to Intel’s Skylake-X

AMD Whitehaven Specs

Whitehaven. AMD’s rumoured high-end desktop (HEDT) platform seems to now have a name and could offer both 16- and 12-core CPU  flavours. With 32 and 24 threads respectively that’s a whole lot of processing right there…


Mind-blowing CPUs could be just around the corner, but in the meantime check out our list feature on the best CPUs out right now to make sure you’re up to date.

We’ve covered AMD’s prospective HEDT platform before, but now VideoCardz have released speculative details of the Whitehaven engineering samples, two of which boast 16 cores and 32 threads as well as a boost clock speed of 3.6GHz and a base clock speed of 3.0GHz. These two almost identical 16-core chips though could well just be different engineering sample generations of the same processor.

A third engineering sample, with 12 cores and 24 threads, 3.2GHz boost clock and 2.7GHz base clock, shares a similar product code to the aforementioned 16-core offerings. That would seem to suggest a third, less powerful Whitehaven chip could also be on the way too.

The CPUs are rumoured to operate using a land grid array (pins in the socket, like Intel’s LGA sockets) as opposed to a pin grid array setup (pins on the chip) as with previous Ryzen iterations. That completely rules out the use of the previous AM4 platform meaning we’re looking at a whole new platform for the new processors.

AMD AM4 socket

AMD had previously claimed that, by unifying their APU and CPU ranges to support the same socket, the AM4 platform meant you could buy one board safe in the knowledge it would support any chip AMD brought out in the next few years, but it seems the company may have now made a u-turn on that point. Putting four of Ryzen’s quad-core clusters – their CCX modules – into one chip will result in a bigger package, more connections and therefore a whole new, chunky socket.

Yet more rumours are flying around about the name of the platform AMD will implement to sit alongside AM4, with someimagery circulating at the moment suggesting X390 may be the title of the chipset – whether this is a direct reference to Intel’s X299 platform though remains to be seen.

Assuming the leaked information is correct, that places the most ambitious Whitehaven chips four cores higher than the 12-core chip Intel has planned for their Skylake-X series. In response, it seems Intel may be rush-releasing the X299 platformin advance of what many believed was the originally planned release at the now-cancelled Intel Developer Forum in August. That could see them moving the reveal forward to Taipei’s Computex show at the end of this month.