Razer doubles the USB speeds of its latest Blade laptop with a firmware update

Razer doubles the USB speeds of its latest Blade laptop with a firmware update

Enlarge / Razer’s latest Blade 14 laptop is getting a spec boost via firmware.

Razer

Owners of the latest Ryzen 6000-based version of Razer’s 14-inch Blade laptop will soon receive an important update: confirmed to The Verge that a BIOS update for the laptop would add USB 4 support to its USB-C ports, doubling transfer speeds from 20 Gbps to 40 Gbps and adding support for wide-range external accessories. bandwidth compatible Thunderbolt such as external GPU docking stations.

USB 4 is a kind of feature compatible with Thunderbolt, the specification that Intel released royalty free in 2019. Like Thunderbolt 3 and 4, a fully enabled USB 4 port supports data transfer speeds of up to 40 Gbps and a PCIe tunnel for support of external GPUs and other high-speed accessories. Some USB 4 ports only support the spec’s minimum 20Gbps speed, the same speed as USB 3.2 Gen 2, but Razer’s ports appear to be fully enabled 40Gbps ports.

Razer doesn’t do anything particularly special to increase its USB speeds. Rather, it takes advantage of the USB 4 capabilities built into all Ryzen 6000 processors. As long as a laptop’s manufacturer has included the necessary hardware to support USB 4 speeds, any manufacturer can “upgrade” to USB 4 via a firmware update and a chipset driver that AMD released this summer. PCWorld has tested the Ryzen 6000’s USB 4 support on an Asus ZenBook which also required a BIOS update before supporting the feature.

The update also allows the Microsoft Pluto Security Processor built into Ryzen 6000 processors, something that won’t improve performance but will add new hardware protections on top of what Windows 11 already needs. As with USB 4, any Ryzen 6000 processor can support Pluto features if your laptop manufacturer enables them.

It’s rare for a laptop to improve its specs via a simple firmware update after the fact, but that’s not unheard of. Along with other Ryzen 6000 based laptops, Framework has also recently announced a yet unreleased firmware update for its latest Intel-based laptop which will “upgrade” the device’s four USB-C ports to Thunderbolt ports, the result of additional certification testing and validation the laptop didn’t pass in time for its initial release.

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