Extinguished already the race for the gigahertz, what we have left is a battle for the number of cores . Intel and AMD have been offering surprises in this area for some time, and Intel has once again taken a step forward.
The company has introduced the Xeon Platinum 9200 family, whose most ambitious variant is bestial with its 56 cores and 112 execution threads , which allows it to deal with impressive workloads. That’s right: it is oriented to data centers, not the gaming domain .
That family consists of four different CPUs, of which the Xeon Platinum 9282 is the one that reaches these 56 cores and 112 threads of execution thanks to the Hyper Threading technology.
Each of these cores operates at a frequency of 2.6 GHz but can reach 3.8 GHz in turbo mode, although the consumption of these beasts is also remarkable: no less than 400 W . The support of 12 channels of DDR4 memory and the integration of a 77 MB cache also gives a good example of the capacity of this micro designed for scenarios with a high degree of parallelism that takes advantage of all those cores to the maximum.
All these processors for datacenters have Cascade Lake-SP architecture , and as happened with Skylake-SP, part of the virtues of these microphones will eventually make the leap to consumer processors as happened with the Skylake-X.
It is unlikely that we will see in the short term a processor for the end user with this number of cores: the Intel Core i9-9980X Extreme Edition is the maximum exponent of this manufacturer in the field of consumption, and “only” has 18 cores and 36 threads of execution
Intel has an extremely serious competitor here with AMD, which already has its Threadripper 2990WX with 32 cores and 64 threads, and this year is expected to present new CPUs with Zen 2 architecture that could reach 64 cores and 128 execution threads .
The price of these processors of the Xeon Platinum 9282 family is not known and it will be difficult to assess them taking into account that these products probably end up forming an integral part of all-in-one servers prepared for companies that want to access these technologies.
More processors, Optane is “unfolded”
AnandTech reveal how that announcement has been accompanied by a long list of Intel Xeon micros for data centers with somewhat less ambitious features but that are still remarkable … and very expensive. The Xeon Platinum 8280, for example, has 28 cores and 56 threads, and costs almost $ 18,000 .
Those ads were joined by the announcement of a new strategy for their Optane memories , which now attack two segments . On the one hand is the product for storage that competes with 3D NAND memories found in SATA NVMe units for example. On the other, memories with DDR4 format but with this technology that are slightly slower but allow you to add much more.
RAM is super fast and (relatively) cheap, we wonder why not use it as a disk drive
In fact Intel indicates how it is possible to add 3 TB of Optane memory (in DCPMM modules) to the 1.5 TB of DDR4 memory of some configurations, which would allow to provide 4.5 TB of memory per socket in a data center .
This manufacturer reveals how this memory can also be used as traditional volatile memory but also as a RAMdisk that allows to store data persistently and with fantastic access times.