Time to get ripped? AMD’s Threadripper CPUs power up processor war with Intel

We feel a flood coming on

We talked yesterday about how Disney was reportedly parting ways with Netflix in order to launch their own streaming service – or services – and now comes news that social media juggernaut Facebook is also getting into the streaming game with a new platform called Watch. OK, we admit, the name is catchy while remaining simple. And of course, what you watch on Watch will be influenced by whatever you do on Facebook.

Instead of grouping options by genres like sci-fi, drama, comedy and so on, Watch will also make suggestions based on what shows are “most talked about,” and “what’s making people laugh,” or “what your friends are watching.” I dunno, that sounds like a LOT of peer pressure to catch up on Game of Thrones. And while you’re, watching, yes, you’ll be able to see likes, reactions and comments in real time, or be able to join a Facebook Group about the show.

Good times! Well, it certainly seems like a new way to enjoy your favorite show with your friends while none of your friends are actually with you, but we suppose that’s kind of the point. Facebook is still lining up content for the service, which is rolling out to U.S. beta users this week, and everyone else very soon.

Threads of power

Computer-building geeks like DT’s Brad Bourque have been patiently awaiting AMD’s Threadripper CPU release, and at long last, the day has arrived.

So, what’s the big deal about the line of CPUs with the kick-ass name? For one, they really are kinda of a “big” deal, because they’re frikkin’ huge. But they need to be, because inside they’re packing some serious firepower with up to 16 cores and 32 threads, along with support for every go-fast tweak PC builders can throw at them. And performance? Yeah, they’ve got that in spades as well – and they’re a serious competitor to Intel’s new Core i9 series.

Price is right too: the top-of-the-line Threadripper, the 1950X, does come in at $1,000 bucks, but if you need dragster-levels of computing horsepower for gaming, design work or world domination plans, it’s really a small price to pay. Check out our full review of the Threadripper series.

Some cracks in the Surface?

And just when it was going so well. Bad news for Microsoft: trusted testing outfit Consumer Reports is stripping their “recommended” citations from Redmond’s line of portable Surface PCs due to mounting concerns over reliability. Consumer Reports says that a survey of 90,000 Surface owners has turned up a nasty streak of problems, including the PCs suddenly freezing up, suddenly shutting down, and problems with the touchscreen.

In fact, in a pretty damning graphic, Microsoft was at the bottom of a reliability chart below pretty much everyone, while Apple is riding high in first place. Of course, Microsoft isn’t staying quiet on the subject, claiming the Consumer Reports findings “don’t accurately reflect owner’s true experiences” and ignore improvements they’ve made to the line of computers.

Microsoft has been working hard on creating a cohesive line of Surface computers, from tablets to laptops to an admittedly elegant desktop, so this is definitely bad news for their efforts.

We’ve got more news on our Facebook page and YouTube channel, and be sure to tune in to this week’s DT podcasts: Close to the Metal (computers and such) on Tuesday, Trends with Benefits (general tech shenanigans)  on Thursdays, and Between the Streams (movie and TV topics) every Friday.

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