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Intel Haswell-EP Xeon E5-2600 v3 Server Family Processor Overview

Intel Haswell-EP Xeon E5-2600 v3 Server Family Processor Overview
Today Intel releases its brand new Haswell-EP Xeon 2600 v3 server processors. William tells us what we can expect in terms of features and performance. (NASDAQ:INTC)
By: William Harmon | Editorials in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Sep 8, 2014 12:30 pm

Introduction

 

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The latest Haswell-EP Intel Xeon E5-2600 v3 processors are about to be released this month, and we have seen some interesting data on these new processors.

 

The Xeon E5-2600 v3 processors are based on a "Tock" version of the 2600 v2 processors, and use the new 22nm 3D Transistors process.

 

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Here we get a look at a wafer made up of E5-2699 v3 18-core processors. This was a large wafer, and it sported as many as 90 actual dies on one wafer. It was difficult to get a picture of this wafer where the dies were countable, so our number could be off by a few dies. One thing that we noticed right off the bat was that the dies go all the way to the edges, with plenty of wasted die. If you look at the bottom of this picture, you can spot some dies that hardly have any die showing - some with maybe less than one-eighth of an actual die.

 

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Here we have a slightly closer look at the wafer; actual cores in each package are starting to become clear. The gap between each die is very miniscule, so the tolerance for cutting these dies apart must be very, very small.

 

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This is as close as we could get with a picture of the die on the wafer. Starting on the left hand side, you can see three rows, each containing four cores. Also, notice on the far right side there is one row with six cores. Adding all of these cores up, we get a total of 18 cores on the wafer shot. What concerns us is the larger number of cores on the right side. Having a larger number of cores on the right may cause adverse heating under heavy loads on that side of the processor.

 

By shifting cores and supporting circuits around a bit, and perhaps making the die itself a little wider, it may just be possible to get 24 cores on a die. However, we are sure Intel has considered this, and this configuration must have been more efficient in the end. Now, let us look at the actual processor packages.

 

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Here we see the respective processor packages. The package on the left is used for smaller core count processors; in this case, an eight-core processor. There is a socket R3 label printed on the substrate. Notice it does not have the side extensions on the substrate.

 

The middle package is used for larger core counts; in this case, a 16-core processor is shown. It also has a socket R3 label printed on the substrate. There are two breathing holes on the IHS. You can expect this package would be used for 10, 12, 14, 16, and 18-core SKU's.

 

The processor on the far right has a label of R1 printed on the substrate. We have not seen a socket 2011-E version of this processor yet; the one shown is of an Ivy Bridge-EX v2 processor. R1 socket is still Socket 2011, but it has different notches that prevent it from being used on a R3 socket, which is typical. We believe these processors are for 4P, or Quad-Socket systems, and we expect a version will be available for the new Haswell-E processors.

 

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Here we can see a picture of the new socket used with the E5-2600 v3 line up. Notice the sides of the socket that allow for the package extension. We found installing these new processors to be interesting, to say the least. The notches at the top and bottom of the package make it somewhat difficult to discern the correct orientation for installation. Take extra care when installing these processors for the first time. The mounting holes are the same used for any Socket 2011 heat sink, so you will not need to change these out for the new platforms.

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