Not everyone who is into PC hardware is privy to the nuances of CPU power delivery, and manufacturers tend not to be especially transparent about the implementation of power stages with regard to PWM controllers and the total number of phases they might be directly controlling.
On Friday OC3D reported on their own findings of possible industry shortage of these doublers, which they say has already resulted in some design changes:
“Today, we have confirmed that Gigabyte has created two new B550 V2 motherboard designs. These two motherboard variants are the B550 AORUS Elite V2 and the B550 AORUS Elite AX V2, both of which no longer include “PWM Doublers”, unlike their older counterparts.
We have contacted Gigabyte regarding the creation of these new V2 B550 motherboard designs, though their existence alone seemingly confirms what we have heard regarding the industry’s phase doubler chip shortage.”
If you’ve poked around reviews, forums, and even comment sections, you’ll be familiar with the term “doublers”, which refers to the phase-doubling components that allow for, for instance, an 8-channel PWM solution to control 16 power phases. This is extremely common, but the concern is that doublers – which have their own inherent latency – can affect overall power delivery efficiency, and thus negatively impact performance in some way.
It’s a great headline for hardcore enthusiasts, and while it’s promising to learn that we might be seeing more designs with better efficiency in power delivery, there is the issue of added component cost that has the potential to raise end-user cost, as well.