SiFive update on HiFive Unmatched boards in 2022

Hepofully you will be pleasantly surprised with a successor board with better performance cpu, more memory, for a lower price shortly?

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Thanks, but given the apparent trouble producing this board, I won’t get my hopes up. Also, I needed the board a month ago, not at some indeterminate point in the future.

And it would be very nice to have a modular set of sub-component boards, rather than the SBC (Single Board Computer) approach. Maybe not quite the standardized backplane & socketed card approach, but pieces one could pick and choose from when putting together their system. This doesn’t mean USB or PCI or other SerDes, but rather something very close to the hardware.

That would seem to massively complicate the design and highly unlikely to occur. The unmatched was designed to be a “PC” developers board. You do not see this type of design on motherboards.

I look forward to the next generation motherboard. My only requests are memory sockets so I can decide how much memory I want, and a quiet CPU fan/cooling system.

It is pretty much decision time on the unmatched eval board.
Many people are posting that crowdsupply are refunding them.
But Mouser who own crowdsupply have not refunded me.
It is marked on their website as “Not available”

They won’t respond to any communication, and I am considering dumping Mouser by cancelling all my outstanding company orders and never using them again.

So I am interested in peoples views that have an Unmatched board.
I am working on the view that if get get one, no bugs will ever be solved by SiFive, they have washed their hands of this board.

So Im interested to know what problems are outstanding with this board.
So I can make a decision about should “I cut and run now”.
Having a fantastic eval board that nobody in the open source community cares about makes very little sense.

Well if you have not gotten a board then 99.999999% probability you never will unless you know someone who wants to part ways with their board. I would guess less than 2000 boards worldwide were made.

I think it has served its purpose, but like Apple and many other tech companies they seem to have moved on to the next project. I am interested to see the improvements in the next board. I expect massive performance improvements, not Intel like baby steps from generation to generation, otherwise I will likely pass on the next board.

It looks like there remains a little confusion out there on SiFive HiFive Unmatched board availability, so I’ll clarify the status here…

As I noted at the beginning of this thread: we determined that, due to Covid-related supply chain issues, we would be unable to build any more Unmatched boards until late 2022 at the earliest; we decided that rather than trying to build more of these boards, we should instead of focus on our upcoming, more powerful development systems based on the SiFive Performance™ P550-powered Horse Creek platform and SoC. This SoC and development system (scheduled to be available in the 2nd half of 2022) were created in collaboration with Intel; the SoC is currently being fabricated in Intel 4 process technology. If you’d like keep up with Horse Creek-related news, you can register to be notified of any updates.

We delivered all the Unmatched boards that we could to our distributors, Mouser and Crowd Supply. If you ordered from them and haven’t received your board, please work directly with them to address your order. Again, we sorry we couldn’t deliver as many boards as we anticipated.

NOTE: For those of you who still need a HiFive Unmatched board for a key project, we do have a small number that we can loan out; please DM me with a description of your project, and we’ll see if can help. If we’re not able to loan you a board, we’ll get you to the front of the list for a Horse Creek board.

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Thanks for the update @phil.dworsky.

Do you know any performance figures for the horse creek platform compared to the unmatched? If it’s roughly double the performance of the unmatched it could easily replace my desktop, and that would be really nice.

Cool!
Excited for a new board, hopefully a little bit quieter and the previous one and more performant.

More single core performance for stuff like Java would be nice.

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@phil.dworsky I have my SiFive Unmatched board in-hand, and using it to help develop a port of Haiku to riscv64.

It’s a great little system, my only ask is give us a quieter fan or a bigger heatsink on future boards. It sounds like a jet when powered on :laughing:

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@pa4wdh, we suggest you register for Horse Creek updates to get performance and other information as it becomes available.

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You may find some on ebay/international occasionally.

I have zero inside information, but simply based on the published microarchitecture and benchmarks, Intel designing the SoC not SiFive (presumably with top quality Intel IP for the RAM and other I/O interfaces), and the process it is being made on …

… if they can’t hit something around Sandy Bridge (32nm) or Ivy Bridge (22nm) actual performance per core then something is very wrong. SkyLake is probably asking a bit much :slight_smile:

I’m still using a Sandy Bridge (E5-1607) workstation from 2013 as my daily driver. It’s entirely adequate for e-mail and web browsing. It’s roughly 6X the performance of the HiFive Unmatched.

A 6X improvement over the FU740 would be pretty awesome. Is it a realistic expectation?

I’m not sure the gap is that big, except on things such as SIMD or crypto that neither the U74 or the P550 have.

My pet benchmark https://hoult.org/primes.txt shows a 3.15x difference between the Unmatched and an i7 3770 (Ivy Bridge)

I could see P550 on a small node getting 2-2.5x on frequency, and 1.5-2x on IPC vs U74. Plus vastly better RAM subsystem, which is one of the main things holding back the Unmatched – the humble Allwinner D1 which you can get on a $17 board has six times the DRAM memcpy() speed of the Unmatched.

Yes, I had the impression as well that it is NOT brute CPU power that’s slowing the unmatched down.

The 6X figure is what I’m seeing with a compile of the Linux kernel with the big Ubuntu configuration. The Sandy Bridge workstation is using a run of the mill Seagate SATA drive, while the Unmatched has NVMe. And cross-compile versus native. So certainly not apples to apples, but at least a real world comparison.

On the primes benchmark, the E5-1607 is around 5515 ms (it’s only 3 GHz).