Skylake Xeons are Adding FPGAs

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Skylake Xeons are Adding FPGAs

Post by omniphonix » Fri Oct 21, 2016 1:04 am

I have a feeling whoever in the pro audio software business gets a head start on this is going to do very well. Intel bought Altera and is adding Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) to the next generation of Xeon CPUs based on Skylake architecture. FPGAs are multi-purpose chips that can be software-configured to perform specific tasks at the hardware level. Specific to audio, an FPGA chip could be configured as a dedicated Digital Signal Processor (DSP) like some folks use with add-on cards like the UAD plugin accelerator cards. It stands to reason (especially considering that Intel went to the trouble of buying Altera for $17 billion), that this tech will eventually filter down into their enthusiast desktop and finally to mainstream CPU lines. Many theorize this is Intel's answer to reaching the end of Moore's Law. Incorporating the capability to configure the on-die FPGA for audio DSP applications into Cubase, or especially the next iteration of the VST API, would put Steinberg in the lead on the next generation of audio software performance. At least in my opinion anyway, I'd be curious if anyone disagrees.
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Re: Skylake Xeons are Adding FPGAs

Post by Raphie » Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:56 am

Could be intestering, but the main thing I see is that my 5 year old 2700K with nvidia 750ti, 16gb ddr3 1866 and 2x SAMSUNG Pro 850 SSD still is totally capable.
So i sort of agree a new generations, though they benchmark faster, do not deliver a faster user experience in Cubase or Wavelab. I also think that anything that runs "elsewhere" enjoys limited support UAD adds considerable latency, limited instances etc. While adding use cost. Other things like CUDA, are just not being adopted by main vendors.

So yes "interesting" but I think I can get by for a couple of more years. :D
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