Tag Archives: AMD EPYC 7000 Series

Confirmed : The Threadripper Is An EPYC CPU In Disguise!

Confirmed : The Threadripper Is An EPYC CPU In Disguise!

Veteran German overclocker der8auer is back at it again! This time, he set out to prove that the two non-functional dies of the AMD Ryzen Threadripper CPU are not blanks, as some pundits have claimed. What he discovered confirms that the Threadripper is really an EPYC processor in disguise!

Don’t forget to check out our previous article on this same issue – The Secrets Of The Delidded Threadripper CPU Revealed!

 

Four Dies But Only Two Work

Thanks to the der8auer’s delidded Threadripper, we know that the Ryzen Threadripper has four AMD Ryzen (Zeppelin) dies, each with 8 Zen cores. Since the Threadripper is only designed to be a 16-core processor, two of the dies are non-functional. So why are there two extra dies?

Simple answer – easier and cheaper production. This is counter-intuitive, so let us explain.

AMD makes a 32-core server processor that uses four Zeppelin cores. Formerly known as AMD Naples, we now know it as the AMD EPYC processor.

Instead of creating a separate production line for Ryzen Threadripper, it is easier and cheaper for AMD to just pick out EPYC parts to use. After all, the EPYC and Threadripper processors both use sockets that are physically the same – SP3 and SP3r2 (TR4), with the same number of pins – 4094.

Combining their production gives them greater economies of scale. Both EPYC and Threadripper are not mass-market processors after all. It also allows them to salvage EPYC processors that don’t make the grade. This isn’t new or extraordinary – the semiconductor industry has been binning and salvaging chips for decades.

 

The Threadripper Is Really An AMD EPYC CPU

According to AMD, the non-functioning dies are really just “structural inserts” (aka blanks) used to support the integrated heat spreader (IHS), and prevent its deformation under pressure. They also revealed that the two functional dies are placed diagonally to “reduce hot spot formation“.

So der8auer set out to prove that AMD used actual Ryzen processor dies (either non-functioning or disabled), instead of blanks. After removing the four dies and sanding them down, he proved that they are all actual Ryzen (Zeppelin) dies.

The pictures above are screenshots from der8auer’s video. All credit should go to him.

As you can see, none of the dies appear to be blanks or mere structural inserts. They appear to be proper Ryzen dies that have either been disabled, or are non-functioning. You can literally see the processor cores after der8auer sanded down the dies.

In other words, the AMD Ryzen Threadripper is really an AMD EPYC CPU, with two of its processor dies disabled / non-functional.

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Of course, this is merely one example. AMD could possibly produce some Threadripper processors with blanks. But as we pointed out, the Threadripper and EPYC processors are so fundamentally similar, it would make sense for AMD to just produce both in the same production line. This allows them to quickly adjust the type of processors produced according to market demand.

All partially-functioning parts will naturally be used as Threadripper CPUs, but unless AMD’s yield is extremely poor, most will be perfectly good AMD EPYC processors that merely have two of their dies disabled.

 

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The Secrets Of The Delidded Threadripper CPU Revealed!

A few days ago, veteran German overclocker der8auer delidded* an AMD Ryzen Threadripper processor with AMD’s permission recently. The video and pictures of the delidded Threadripper revealed many interesting facts about the upcoming 16-core desktop processor. He was soon asked to remove the video, but as they say – the Internet never forgets.

In this article, we will summarise the secrets revealed by der8auer’s delidded Threadripper processor!

* Delidding a processor means removing its integrated heat spreader (IHS), to reveal the processor die(s) underneath.

Don’t forget to catch our follow-up article – Confirmed : The Threadripper Is An EPYC CPU In Disguise!

 

Four Dies But Only Two Are Functional

Although many of us assumed that Threadripper would use two AMD Ryzen (aka Zeppelin) dies, the der8aeur’s delidded Threadripper revealed four Ryzen dies underneath the heatsink!

As you know, every Zeppelin die has eight AMD Zen processor cores inside. So technically, every AMD Ryzen Threadripper processor has 32 processor cores in them.

AMD has confirmed that only two of the four Zeppelin dies in the Ryzen Threadripper is functional. The other two are permanently disabled.

 

EPYC Processor In Threadripper Clothes

The presence of four Zeppelin dies means the Ryzen Threadripper is functionally the AMD EPYC server processor, with two of its dies disabled.

Why would AMD use four processor dies when they only need two? Simple answer – easier and cheaper production. This is counter-intuitive, so let us explain.

AMD makes a 32-core server processor that uses four Zeppelin cores. Formerly known as AMD Naples, we now know it as the AMD EPYC processor.

Instead of creating a separate production line for Ryzen Threadripper, it is easier and cheaper for AMD to just pick out EPYC parts to use. After all, the EPYC and Threadripper processors both use sockets that are physically the same – SP3 and SP3r2 (TR4), with the same number of pins – 4094.

Combining their production gives them greater economies of scale. Both EPYC and Threadripper are not mass-market processors after all. It also allows them to salvage EPYC processors that don’t make the grade. This isn’t new or extraordinary – the semiconductor industry has been binning and salvaging chips for decades.

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Indium Solder + Gold-Plating

AMD did not skimp on the TIM (Thermal Interface Material). In fact, they went for top-of-the-line solution – gold-plating the base of the heat spreader, and directly soldering the dies to it using an indium solder.

This is as good as it gets, ladies and gentlemen. So please don’t waste your time and kill your Ryzen Threadripper processor by delidding it!

 

Possible 32-Core Threadripper

The decision to produce the Ryzen Threadripper as a clipped version of the AMD EPYC processor means it would be very easy for AMD to release a 32-core Threadripper processor down the road.

However, we think this is quite unlikely as the market for a 32-core desktop processor will be miniscule. Even the 16-core Ryzen Threadripper will sell only in small numbers – much, much smaller than the highly-popular Ryzen 7 processors.

 

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The AMD EPYC 7000 Series Processor Tech Report

AMD just launched the AMD EPYC 7000 series processors. Formerly known as AMD Naples, it boasts up to 32 AMD Zen processor cores, and challenges the Intel Xeon’s dominance in the datacenter. After a sneak peek at their Computex 2017 press conference, AMD finally revealed the EPYC 7000 series processors. Let’s take a look!

 

The AMD EPYC 7000 Series Processor

Like Ryzen, the EPYC processor is based on their new Zen microarchitecture. Designed for servers, the EPYC processor offers up to 32 processor cores, an integrated high-speed DDR4 memory controller and a new high-speed coherent interconnect. AMD now reveals that it also comes with an embedded security subsystem.

Here is a summary of the EPYC processor’s key features :

  • Supports up to 32 AMD Zen cores., each capable of handling 2 simultaneous threads.
  • [adrotate group=”2″]Integrated DDR4 memory controller with 8 memory channels, each supporting two DIMMs. That’s a total of 16 DIMMs per processor socket, allowing for up to 2 TB of memory. A 2-socket server will support up to 32 DIMMs, with a total memory capacity of 4 TB.
  • The EPYC processor is fully integrated with high-speed I/O including 128 PCIe 3.0 lanes.
  • Because the EPYC is a complete SoC, there is no need for a separate chipset, reducing cost and power consumption.
  • In a 2-socket system, two EPYC processors communicate with each other via the AMD Infinity Fabric coherent interconnect. Even though each EPYC processor has 128 PCIe 3.0 lanes, it is limited to 64 PCIe 3.0 lanes in a 2-socket design.  The 2P EPYC system will have a total of 128 PCI 3.0 lanes, not 256.

In addition, AMD revealed the first EPYC family of processors – the EPYC 7000 Series, with nine processors divided into four segments. They also introduced three EPYC processor variants designed for single socket servers.

  • EPYC 7601, 7551, 7551P and 7501 processors have 32 cores and a peak TDP of 170-180 W.
  • EPYC 7451, 7401 and 7401P processors have 24 cores and a peak TDP of 170-180 W.
  • EPYC 7351, 7351P, 7301 and 7281 processors have 16 cores and a peak TDP of 170 W.
  • EPYC 7251 processor has 8 cores and a peak TDP of 120 W.

 

The AMD EPYC 7000 Series Presentation

If you have the time, check out this 103-minute presentation on the EPYC 7000 Series processors by Dr. Lisa Su and Forrest Norrod from AMD, as well as their partners. Dr. Lisa also comes out at the end to reveal the AMD Radeon Instinct MI25 accelerator, that we revealed several months earlier.

Next Page >  EPYC 7000 Series Performance & Key Advantages

 

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EPYC 7000 Series Processor Performance

AMD also revealed their internal benchmarks for the EPYC 7000 series processors :[adrotate group=”2″]

Single Socket AMD EPYC 7601 Server

  • SPECiut_rate2006 : 1200
  • SPECfp_rate2006 : 943

Two Socket AMD EPYC 7601 Server

  • SPECiut_rate2006 : 1390
  • SPECfp_rate2006 : 1330

AMD compared the two processor performance of the EPYC 7601, showing that it beat the Intel Xeon E5-2699A v4 in integer compute by 47%, and floating point compute by 75%.

 

Price Performance Advantage

AMD also took pains to point out that the price performance advantage the EPYC 7000 Series processors have over their Intel Xeon rivals, in both the 2-socket and single-socket segments.

 

Data Security Advantage

Other than raw computing performance and support for a truckload of memory, EPYC processors also offer an integrated hardware security subsystem. This allows the EPYC processors to deliver full memory encryption and secure multi-tenancy for data domain with no application impact.

 

Compatibility & Support

Finally, AMD wants everyone to know that the EPYC is an x86 processor and readily supports all x86 applications in the market. They have also performed extensive tests with industry partners like Microsoft, VMware and Red Hat.

They have also lined up considerable support from their server partners to deliver AMD EPYC solutions to customers worldwide.

Next Page > The Official Series Press Release & Slides

 

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AMD EPYC 7000 Series Processor Press Release

AUSTIN, Texas — June 20, 2017 — AMD (NASDAQ: AMD), and a global ecosystem of server partners, today marked a new era in the datacenter with the launch of AMD EPYC 7000 series high-performance datacenter processors. AMD was joined by multiple customers and partners at the global launch event in presenting a wide array of systems, performance demonstrations, and customer testimonials. The innovative, record-setting EPYC design, with up to 32 high-performance “Zen” cores and an unparalleled feature set, delivers greater performance than the competition across a full range of integer, floating point, memory bandwidth, and I/O benchmarks and workloads.

“With our EPYC family of processors, AMD is delivering industry-leading performance on critical enterprise, cloud, and machine intelligence workloads,” said Lisa Su, president and CEO, AMD. “EPYC processors offer uncompromising performance for single-socket systems while scaling dual-socket server performance to new heights, outperforming the competition at every price point. We are proud to bring choice and innovation back to the datacenter with the strong support of our global ecosystem partners.”

The world’s largest server manufacturers introduced products based on EPYC 7000-series processors at today’s launch, including HPE, Dell, ASUS, Gigabyte, Inventec, Lenovo, Sugon, Supermicro, Tyan, and Wistron. Primary hypervisor and server operating system providers Microsoft, Red Hat, and VMware showcased optimized support for EPYC, while key server hardware ecosystem partners Mellanox, Samsung Electronics, and Xilinx were also featured in EPYC-optimized platforms.

Cloud Datacenter and Enterprise Customers

Datacenter and cloud service providers also welcomed EPYC to the market today. Members of the “Super 7” datacenter services providers, including Baidu and Microsoft Azure, as well as 1&1, Bloomberg, Dropbox and LexisNexis, all voiced their support at launch.

Record-Setting EPYC Performance

The excitement around EPYC is driven by multiple record-setting server benchmarks achieved by EPYC-powered one-socket and two-socket systems.

AMD EPYC processors set several performance records, including:

  • Two-Socket Server
    • EPYC 7601-based system scored 2360 on SPECint_rate2006, higher than any other two-socket system score
  • One-Socket Server
    • EPYC 7601-based system scored 1200 on SPECint_rate2006, higher than any other mainstream one-socket x86-based system score
    • EPYC 7601-based system scored 943 on SPECfp_rate2006, higher than any other one-socket system score

All EPYC processors combine innovative security features, enterprise class reliability, and support a full feature-set. An EPYC 7601 CPU-based one-socket system shifts expectations for single socket server performance, helping lower total-cost-of-ownership (TCO), providing up to 20% CapEx savings compared to the Intel Xeon E5-2660 v4-based two-socket system. At every targeted price point for two-socket processors, EPYC outperforms the competition, with up to 70% more performance in the eight hundred dollar price band and up to 47% more performance at the high-end of the market of four thousand dollars or more.

EPYC Product Overview

  • A highly scalable System on Chip (SoC) design ranging from 8-core to 32-core, supporting two high-performance threads per core.
  • Industry-leading memory bandwidth across the line-up, with 8 channels of memory on every EPYC device. In a two-socket server, support for up to 32 DIMMS of DDR4 on 16 memory channels, delivering up to 4 terabytes of total memory capacity.
  • Unprecedented support for integrated, high-speed I/O with 128 lanes of PCIe 3 on every product
  • A highly-optimized cache structure for high-performance, energy efficient compute
  • AMD Infinity Fabric coherent interconnect linking EPYC CPUs in a two-socket system
  • Dedicated security hardware
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The Official Presentation Slides

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