Thursday, 22 November, 2018

AMD shows Zen 2-based 7nm EPYC Rome CPU in action

AMD EPYC 'Rome': Zen 2 on 7nm, 64C/128T of CPU power AMD shows Zen 2-based 7nm EPYC Rome CPU in action
Cecil Davis | 08 November, 2018, 04:41

In a head-to-head performance preview, AMD's single-socket EPYC Rome did not only managed to match but actually be faster than Intel's dual-socket platform, showing the potential of a 7nm EPYC Rome CPU based on Zen 2 architecture.

Specifically, the new Epyc Rome processors will feature a combination of 7nm Zen 2 CPU chips alongside another 14nm die that controls the input and output elements of the processor.

At an event in San Francisco titled Next Horizon, Su and other senior company executives and engineers laid out AMD's plan to make a serious dent in the high-margin server CPU market which is typically slow to adopt new technology.

Closeup of AMD's Rome processor, courtesy Tom's Hardware. That could soon change.

AMD has officially unveiled the next-generation of EPYC processors featuring the Zen 2 microarchitecture, and they look set to transform the server market once again.

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We have 2x performance per socket compared to the previous-gen EPYC processor, and this is an insane leap in performance. A few days ago, Intel claimed that its upcoming 48-core HPC Xeon processor, known as Cascade Lake Advanced Performance (AP), would deliver 3.4 times the floating point performance on Linpack as this same EPYC chip. While AMD claims the design handily beats Intel's Xeon Platinum 8180M at the C-Ray benchmark, though, the company has taken the unusual step of redacting full benchmark results until after the chip has launched.

Are you a techie who knows how to write? This is a insane achievement for AMD, and really sets a new standard for compute performance.

For now, AMD is only sharing details about Zen 2 on the server side. According to Papermaster, this was something of a gamble, given the challenges of implementing such a complex design on a leading-edge semiconductor manufacturing technology. Next year will be the first time ever that AMD's CPUs hold a process node manufacturing advantage over Intel. The CPU chips which are called chiplets by AMD are connected to the I/O die through an "enhanced version" of the company's Infinity Fabric interconnect link. For example, the I/O and Infinity Fabric chiplets in Rome are implemented on a 14nm process, since unlike the execution units, they don't need the same level of transistor density. Fear not, because not only will the EPYC "Rome" chips be socket compatible with existing EPYC "Naples" silicon, but it will also be forward compatible with AMD's "Milan" CPUs that will use the Zen 3 microarchitecture.

7nm Rome CPUs are now sampling to AMD's customers and clients. A Zen 4 processor is also in the works, although no timeline was given for its debut.