AMD Launches EPYC Server Chips And Forces Intel To Run For The Heels


Earlier this year AMD had launched the Ryzen series of CPU chips giving Intel a major hit but that was only a glimpse of what was to come. AMD has made an epic comeback by officially launching their EPYC series of server Cpu Chips. By pairing the launch of Ryzen Cpu chips along with the EPYC server chips AMD has totally forced Intel to leave the computer chip industry. Formerly known as Naples, the new EPYC chips are targeting the entire server CPU market.The EPYC chips are packed with power specs, lets see what they are.

EPYC Specs

Key takeaways

Epyc is AMD’s most powerful CPU launch in well over a decade. Whist having Ryzen on the desktop is a step in the right direction, AMD has practically no market-share in the server space – most estimates put it as low as two per cent.

The higher average selling price of server chips translates to fundamental revenue and profit opportunity for AMD, because if you start at near zero, the only way is up.

Zen, the architecture behind Epyc, is designed primarily for the server space in mind.

Epyc is able to harness raw power by increasing thread count being built through that multi-chip module architecture, where four Zen-based dies are connected to each other. Such an approach only works if the inter-die connection is super-fast and low latency, and here the in-house-developed Infinity Fabric server the primary role.

In keeping with a balanced design that provisions for plenty of IO, AMD equips Epyc with 128 lanes of PCIe that can run a whole host of storage or graphics options, handily beating Intel’s current generation… even though Epyc’s SoC setup means it doesn’t expand its storage options through a separate PCH, like Intel.

And that balance also requires heaps of memory bandwidth. Each die accesses dual-channel memory that aggregates to eight channels running at up to 2,666MT/s. Compute, IO, memory and efficient power are the key drivers of server performance; AMD appears to have a solid all-round design in Epyc.

New security features: AMD adds in an ARM-based Cortex-A5 Secure Processor within the silicon of every Zen core. This little chip’s job is to provide hardware-based support for two new technologies called Secure Memory Encryption (SME) and Secure Encrypted Virtualisation (SEV). Among these the SME offers real-time memory encryption at boot time while the SEV encrypts parts of the memory shared by virtual machines.

AMD EPYC 7000 Series Performance

AMD EPYC dual socket

AMD EPYC single socket

AMD is not only going to take the fight to Intel in the single socket platform but is also determined to disrupt Intel’s hold in the 2 socket market. An EPYC 1S platform is known to offer up to 50 percent better processor performance compared to an Intel 2S solution. It is also less power hungry. Performance and pricing comparison of various AMD EPYC 7000 series processors versus the Broadwell-EP counterparts from Intel is provided in the images just below

Two-Socket Server

An AMD EPYC 7601-based system scored 2360 on SPECint_rate2006 which was higher than any other two-socket system score.

One-Socket Server

A AMD EPYC 7601-based system scored 1200 on SPECint_rate2006, higher than any other mainstream one-socket x86-based system score.
Another AMD EPYC 7601-based system scored 943 on SPECfp_rate2006, higher than any other one-socket system score.

AMD EPYC 7000 Series Server Lineup

AMD Epyc 7000 series server lineup

While AMD EPYC is being considered superior to Intel’s Broadwell-EP chips from last year, it should be noted that Intel is also releasing their Skylake-SP platform in 2017 followed by Cascade Lake-SP in 2018. AMD also has plans to roll out their Rome server lineup based on the new Zen 2 cores later in 2018 which will feature a 48 core chip codenamed “Starship”.