When AMD brought Ryzen and the AM4 platform to market, it would be fair to say it felt a little bit hurried. Some basic motherboard functionality was overlooked, an aspect which AMD has been hastily fixing with a series of updates. Limiting DDR4 memory support to 3200MHz was perhaps the most curious of these omissions, but as of the Ryzen AGESA (AMD Generic Encapsulated System Architecture) 220.127.116.11 update, AM4 motherboards can now support memory clocks up to and including DDR4-4000.
AGESA is the utility responsible for initializing AMD processors during the boot and forms the basis for building the BIOS files. In total, AMD has added 26 new memory-related parameters with the latest version of AGESA, providing motherboard manufacturers with a little more to work with when trying to deliver comprehensive BIOS support and features. This particular update allows memory on AM4 chipsets to exceed the 2667MHz cap on JEDEC specifications, allow for manual overclocking and improves compatibility.
Up until this point, the DDR4-3200 cap has left AMD flailing a little in comparison to Intel. This may have contributed significantly to the gaming performance disparity between Ryzen chips and their Intel LGA1151 counterparts.
In addition to the cap, AMD has also added support for a greater variety of menu. Previously, AM4 support memory in 266MT/s increments. This has now been reduced to 133MT/s, ensuring a larger number of memory kits will be able to run at their actual rated speed, rather than dropping down to the nearest support increment.
As for when you can download the Ryzen AGESA 18.104.22.168 for yourself, that depends on which motherboard you are currently rocking.
“We are now at the point where that testing can begin transitioning into release candidate and/or production BIOSes for you to download,” says Robert Hallock, AMD’s technical marketing guru. “Depending on the QA/testing practices of your motherboard vendor, full BIOSes based on this code could be available for your motherboard starting in mid to late June. Some customers may already be in luck, however, as there are motherboards—like my Gigabyte GA-AX370-Gaming 5 and ASUS Crosshair VI—that already have public betas.”
Couple this update with the Windows power plans and game performance updates, and AMD’s post-launch Ryzen support is impressive. What started off as decent, good value processors are rapidly transforming into performance powerhouses. There is the argument that all of this should have been supported on day one of course, but it’s better late than never.