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SiFive announces new RISC-V processor architecture plus its first-ever desktop PC processor in response to Nvidia's plans to dominate the server market

SiFive's RISC-V processors are coming to a PC near you this October. (Image Souerce: SiFive)
SiFive's RISC-V processors are coming to a PC near you this October. (Image Souerce: SiFive)
In the event that Nvidia compromises most processor-related ARM IPs, SiFive's RISC-V scalable CPUs could see increased adoption even from mobile and smartphone OEMs. SiFive is already prepared to meet the increased demand with its updated AI-focused RISC-V microarchitecture that enables different classes of performance, efficiency and features for server-grade, HPC and even desktop PC systems.
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Quite a few market analysts suggested that the RISC-V processor architecture could see increased adoption if Nvidia takes over ARM and restricts all related IPs for big players like Apple, Qualcomm or Samsung. Now that team green has indeed emerged as the fresh owner of ARM, RISC-V IP owner SiFive immediately issued an announcement regarding its updated RISC-V processor architecture that will be fully unveiled at this year’s Linley Fall Virtual Processor Conference in late October.

As expected, the new RISC-V architecture will focus on improved AI performance and will target data centers / research-oriented HPCs, which also happens to be the markets targeted by Nvidia’s latest expansion plans fueled by the ARM acquisition. While the ARM IPs could be affected by the Nvidia's expansive moves, SiFive’s RISC-V instruction set architecture still remains free and open source, so it could become a solid alternative even for mobile computing and smartphones. In this respect, the new RISC-V architecture is designed to enable different classes of performance, efficiency and features through a boon of highly-configurable parameters.

When it comes to supercomputers, the updated RISC-V instruction set allows for a combination of scalable vector processing with Linux-capable superscalar multi-core processor designs. The new processor cores also include a complete implementation of the latest RISC-V Vector (RVV) extension that enables a unified processing and development environment for scalar and high-performance vector processing applications.

Previously only restricted to servers and supercomputers, the RISC-V processors can now be scaled to power desktop PCs, as well. SiFive is planning to demonstrate its first PC-oriented SoC called Freedom U740 at the Linley Conference. This new SoC comes complete with an expanded development environment that allows for the creation of RISC-V applications from bare-metal to Linux-based systems, including porting all existing server-grade applications. PCs with various form-factors can benefit from the heterogeneous mix+match core complex features of the new FU740 SoC.

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Bogdan Solca
Bogdan Solca - Senior Tech Writer - 1541 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2017
I first stepped into the wondrous IT&C world when I was around seven years old. I was instantly fascinated by computerized graphics, whether they were from games or 3D applications like 3D Max. I'm also an avid reader of science fiction, an astrophysics aficionado, and a crypto geek. I started writing PC-related articles for Softpedia and a few blogs back in 2006. I joined the Notebookcheck team in the summer of 2017 and am currently a senior tech writer mostly covering processor, GPU, and laptop news.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2020 09 > SiFive announces new RISC-V processor architecture plus its first-ever desktop PC processor in response to Nvidia's plans to dominate the server market
Bogdan Solca, 2020-09-15 (Update: 2020-09-15)