AMD has officially launched the fourth-generation of its Epyc server processors for high performance computing (HPC) in the data center, and all the top OEMs showed up for the party.
Officially named the Epyc 9004 but commonly referred to by its codename “Genoa,” the new chip is based on the fourth generation of AMD’s Zen microarchitecture and built on a 5nm manufacturing process by TSMC.
Thanks to its chiplet design, which breaks the monolithic CPU into smaller “chiplets” that are tied together with a high speed interconnect, Genoa has up to 96 cores (double Intel’s best at the moment). The chiplets, with 16 cores each, are easier to manufacture than a single 96-core CPU. Genoa includes the latest I/O technology, such as PCI Express 5.0, 12 channels of DDR5 memory, and CXL 1.1.
“In the enterprise, we see very strong adoption of Epyc,” said AMD CEO Lisa Su during the Epyc launch event. “This year we increased our on-prem enterprise deployments by more than 50 percent, and we’re significantly increasing the number of Epyc-based solutions across the ecosystem. We’re on track to double the number of solutions in 2023.”
OEMs show up for Epyc launch
AMD lined up a parade of OEMs that are either announcing new products or supporting AMD.
HP Enterprise CEO Antonio Neri announced six new platforms featuring Genoa processors, including recently-announced ProLiants and its Cray EX supercomputers.
Dell Technologies announced the next generation of Dell PowerEdge servers with the Epyc 9004 series in one- and two-socket configurations. The new models can support as much as 50% more processor cores compared to the previous generation.
The PowerEdge R7625 is a two-socket, 2U platform designed for in-memory databases and other enterprise applications, while the PowerEdge R7615 is a one-socket, 2U server with a faster memory bandwidth than previous generations. It is designed to complete multiple jobs faster with a smaller data center footprint.
The PowerEdge R6625 is a two-socket, 1U server designed for HPC workloads or running multiple virtual desktop infrastructure instances, while the PowerEdge R6615 is a one-socket, 1U server that offers more virtual machine density than previous generations.
Supermicro announced three new lines of Genoa-powered servers: GrandTwin, a multi-node architecture solution with front and rear I/O, designed for maximum density and purpose-built for single-processor performance; CloudDC, a single-processor system designed for cost-effective service delivery in cloud computing; and Hyper, enterprise-focused dual-processor servers covering a range of computing, networking, storage, and I/O expansion capabilities.
Lenovo’s server chief (who is ex-Intel) Kirk Skaugen was there to talk up Genoa as well. Lenovo already made its Genoa announcements in September when it launched a raft of new products.
New Azure instances
Su noted that every major cloud service provider had deployed Epyc instances, and two were on hand for the launch. Oracle was there to talk up its support for Genoa but made no announcement. Then there was Microsoft, where Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of cloud and AI, announced two new HPC virtual machines on Azure powered by the 9004 processor.
First is an all-new HX series of VMs featuring 1.5TB of ultra-low latency memory. These VMs are purpose-built to help accelerate Exploratory Data Analysis (EDA) operations. EDA refers to the process of performing initial investigations on data so as to discover patterns and spot anomalies, to check assumptions on statistics. Guthrie said the new VMs offer an 80% performance improvement over older instances.
Microsoft also introduced its fourth generation of Azure HPC series virtual machines, the HB series, that deliver up to two-and-a-half times the performance of third-generation HB series, and up to six times the performance of HPC servers that customers run in their on-premises environments. Both tje HX and HB series feature 400 gigabit InfiniBand.
The HX and HB instances are available for sign-up now.
More processors coming from AMD
Su closed out the event with a quick roundup of 2023 Epyc products, starting with Bergamo, a 128-core version of Genoa, and Genoa-X, which is the Genoa line with AMD’s V-Cache stacking technology for L3 cache. Essentially, V-Cache stacks up L3 memory similar to how NAND flash memory is stacked up, thus allowing for more memory in a smaller space.
In the second half of the year, AMD intends to release Siena, a 64-core version of Genoa optimized for low power use on the edge.
“In addition to our commitment to CPUs, we’re also committed to being the partner of choice across the full spectrum of engines that you need in the data center. So that includes our Instinct GPUs, our FPGAs, our adaptive SoCs, our smartNICs and our DPU products. So you can really see that we have the full spectrum of what you need,” Su said in closing.