AMD's second golden era is coming - Photo 1.

AMD's "second golden era" is coming


On August 7, AMD introduced the new Epyc 7nm CPU line for servers and data centers. These new CPUs not only improve some aspect of Intel, but also bring an overall improvement in all aspects. The price per core CPU is lower, increasing IPC, and promises to bring more CPU cores than Intel's equivalent socket.

In the past, only once did AMD come close to beating Intel like that – when they launched the Opteron and Athlon 64 X2 dual-core processors in 2005. But the Epyc launch this time is even better. So, when AMD's products are not only better than multipliers, they also have higher performance and lower prices. This is also the strongest attack on Intel's high-end Xeon chips, which dominate the current fertile server market.

Analysts have predicted that AMD's server market share could double in the next 12 months, reaching 10% by the second quarter of 2020. Having a bigger market share in the data center market. is an important goal for AMD. A higher market share for the enterprise market and data center not only helps increase revenue for AMD but also stabilizes the company's financial situation.

One of AMD's weaknesses is that in the last two decades, they have often relied on sales of low-end PCs and retail channels, but these two markets all have low profit margins and are on the decline as the total. PC market has gone down for many years. Meanwhile, the business market is less affected by this recession, and therefore, this segment will bring more stable revenue for the company in the future.

Epyc ROME is a big threat to Intel

A pair of AMD EPYC 7742 – the most powerful CPU of the Epyc Rome series released this time – costs $ 13,900. Meanwhile, an Intel Xeon 8280 pair is also priced at $ 20,000, 30% higher than AMD's product. Many of Intel's other options also didn't yield better results, when a set of four Xeon Platinum 8260 CPUs – set to have the highest score – also cost up to $ 18,800. Four CPUs E7-8890v4 even consumed nearly $ 30,000 on the price list.

AMD's second golden era is coming - Photo 2.

Compile capacity per hour of each CPU system.

Not only the absolute price, even the price / performance of AMD is also superior to Intel. For example, Intel's Xeon 8276, 8276M and 8276L trio have almost identical parameters, only the maximum capacity of RAM support is 1TB, 2TB and 4.5TB, but there are different prices quite far, with starting from 8,719 USD.

AMD's second golden era is coming - Photo 3.

To get the CPU supports 4.5TB RAM, customers have to pay more than 16,000 USD for Xeon Platinum 8276L.

Meanwhile, the entire 7nm Epyc Rome line launched by AMD all supports up to 4TB of RAM. This means that AMD's CPUs are not only cheaper but also support memory with superior capacity.

But that's not the only weakness of Intel being targeted by AMD in this CPU release. Customers need more PCIe lanes? AMD has. Customers want PCIe 4.0? AMD. If your workload is optimized for more CPU cores, no one has a cheaper CPU than AMD.

AMD's second golden era is coming - Photo 4.

Not only better prices, AMD EPYC processors

The 7nm process also gives AMD the advantage of energy consumption, especially for servers. Report from STH (serverthehome.com) indicates that power consumption for Intel Xeon Platinum 8180 is approximately 430W, while AMD Epyc 7742 is only about 340W.

Not only that, more multipliers on AMD CPUs will allow a system to use Epyc Rome to use 6 to 8 sockets less than Intel Xeon systems (equivalent to 50 to 80 CPU cores). Therefore, the energy savings from releasing up to 3 to 4 dual-sockets on the server will be much larger than the 90W figure above.

Intel also has certain advantages over AMD, one of which is that the L3 cache is much larger than its competitors (38.5MB shared among CPU cores while each CPU of AMD Epyc ROME has 4MB of L3 cache). However, this advantage is limited to certain applications that require large L3 cache memory. In addition, features like DL Boost also help Intel to have the advantage of performance on AI tasks and machine learning, but this advantage may only help Intel to pursue AMD but it is hard to beat them.

What is the actual price of Intel CPU?

However, the price of Xeon CPUs mentioned above is only the price announced by Intel for orders of 1,000 units of product. However, this price is often very inaccurate, and we can hardly know how much firms such as HPE (HP Enterprise), Dell and other companies actually pay for Intel, but obviously it will be much lower. compared to the retail price announced by Intel.

AMD's second golden era is coming - Photo 5.

AMD's new 7nm EPYC processor for servers and data centers.

This price gap can explain why AMD's CPU Threadripper is so uncommon in the market, despite having higher multiplier and performance per USD than Intel. Not only that, weak sales of both the Threadripper and Skylake-X lines occur even if Intel does not intend to discount the Core X line.

This shows that Intel has no problems selling 10-core CPUs to its OEM partners, despite the price / performance difference compared to AMD workstation CPUs. But now with the pronounced price / performance difference between Xeon CPUs compared to Epyc Rome, Intel's rampart walls around the server market are in danger of collapse.

AMD still has a lot of work to do

AMD's second golden era is coming - Photo 6.

Remember the first golden dynasty of AMD in 2005, when they launched the business-class Opteron dual-core processor and the Athlon 64 X2 line for PCs, what seemed to be their domination period finally came.

However, just a year later, Intel launched Core 2 Duo and then AMD became out of the market for 11 years after that. Finally, the company leaders admitted that they were distracted with the acquisition of ATI. A series of other problems also appeared immediately afterwards.

Maybe the wall built by Intel is starting to show cracks but it is much more difficult to destroy it. AMD is having the opportunity they have been looking forward to gaining market share in the enterprise playground with the ROME 7nm Epyc CPUs, but having the server market is a long and careful process. If AMD wants to keep what it has, it needs different cards compared to 2005-2006.

Refer to ExtremeTech



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