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Wednesday16 January 2019

5 reasons to consider switching to Intel E5-2600 series CPUs starting from yesterday

On Mar 6, 2012 Intel announced new server CPUs for dual-CPU platform – Sandy Bridge E5-2600-series in which by adding just 2 additional cores it made E5-2600 almost 2 times faster than the previous X5600 generation! How did they do it and why one should consider switching to E5-based system?

Architecture difference between X5600 series and E5-2600 series
x5600vse5-2600

 

Reason 1: increased Bandwidth. The second Quick Path Interconnect (QPI) link was added to the CPU and the speed of QPI itself was increased from 6.4 Giga Transfers per second (GT/s) for X5600 series to 8GT/s for E5-2600 series resulting in huge performance increase through increased intra-CPU communication speed.

Reason 2: more CPU cores. The number of cores increased from 6 to 8, and even though the cores became smaller, the number of instructions per cycle increased from 4 (X5600 series) to 8 (E5-2600 series) in AVX resulting almost 100% performance increase for floating-point operations!

Reason 3: faster memory speed and increased RAM capacity. The number of memory channels increased from 3 to 4 per CPU plus Sandy Bidge can now support DDR3-1600 memory of up to 32GB per module (comparing to DDR3-1333 maximum memory for X5600 series) providing a maximum memory capacity of 768GB RAM per dual-CPU system.

To summarize the differences between X5600 series and E5-2600 series platforms:

 

X5600 series
platform

E5-2600 series platform

Processor One QPI 6.4GT/s link
6 cores / 12 threads / 12MB cache
Turbo 1.0
Two QPI 8.0 GT/s links
8 cores / 16 threads / 20MB cache
Turbo 2.0
AVX
Memory 3 channels
Up to 1333 MHz
Up to 18 DIMMs
Up to 288GB per system
4 channels
Up to 1600MHz
Up to 24 DIMMs
Up to 768GB per system
LRDIMMs
I/O Two-chipIOH/ICHUp to 32 lanes of PCI Express 2.0 Integrated I/OUp to 80 lanes of PCI Express 3.0DDIO
Power Management NM 1.5 NM 2.0

Reason 4: x2 performance increase

Server CPU Theoretical Peak Performance comparison:

 

X5600 series CPUs

E5-2600 series CPUs

 

Part Number

Performance, GFLOPS Part Number

Performance, GFLOPS

Top BinLow bin X5690
X5680
X5675
X5670
X5660
X5650
83.04
79.92
73.44
70.32
67.2
63.84
E5-2690
E5-2680
E5-2670
E5-2665
E5-2660
E5-2650
185.6
172.8
166.4
153.6
140.8
128

Reason 5: great price / performance

Price-performance comparison

X5600 series VS E5-2600 series

Price
Difference, Times

Performance, Difference, Times
X5690 / E5-2690
X5680 / E5-2680
X5675 / E5-2670
X5670 / E5-2665
X5660 / E5-2660
X5650 / E5-2650
1.25
1.05
1.09
1.01
1.10
1.12

2.24
2.16
2.27
2.18
2.10
2.01

In other words for around 10% increase in price one gets more than 100% increase in performance which in tern means that one will need to buy twice as less servers to complete the same task!

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