The Top of the Line Xeon D: 16 Cores At 2.3 GHz

The Xeon D-1557 is a Xeon D with 12 cores running at 1.8 GHz most of the time (1.5 GHz base clock) that can boost to 2.1 GHz in single threaded circumstances. The reason for the modest clockspeed is simply the relatively low 45W TDP.

So if you need more CPU compute power, Intel has recently launched the Xeon D-1581, which contains 16 cores (32 threads) which can run at 2.3 GHz most of the time (1.8 GHz base), and boosts to 2.4 GHz. It does not seem to be available to everybody quite yet, but it is simply the slightly more powerful version of the earlier 1587, which runs one speed grade slower (1.7-2.3 GHz). Intel has not disclosed pricing yet, but it is not too hard to figure out. The Xeon D-1587 costs a daunting $1754, so it is very likely that the slightly faster Xeon D-1581 is around $1850.

To make the Xeon D-1581 equipped Supermicro X10SDV-7TP8F attractive, Supermicro turned it into a very luxurious board. They added the LSI 2116 RoC chip which adds up to 16 SATA3/SAS2 ports, and an Intel i350-AM4 (4 extra gigabit ports) and an Intel I210 (2 extra gigabit ports). So in total you can attach 4x SATA disks, 16x SAS disks, 6x GigE and 2x 10 GbE connections. Although we are impressed with the I/O capabilities, we feel that the Ethernet configuration is a bit too much of a good thing. If you configured something wrong, the fact that 3 different NIC chips are present makes debugging it harder. Nevertheless, it is an interesting alternative for a large part of the server market that does not need a 2 socket Xeon E5 but still needs a lot of local I/O.

Supermicro and the Xeon D ThunderX SKUs: What is Cavium Offering Today?
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  • Spunjji - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    Well, this is certainly promising. Absent AMD, Intel need some healthy competition in this market - even if it is in something of a niche area.
  • niva - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    This is the area where profits are made, not "something of a niche area."
  • Shadow7037932 - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    Yeah, I mean getting some big customers like Facebook or Google would be rather profitable I'd imagine.
  • JohanAnandtech - Thursday, June 16, 2016 - link

    More than 30% of Intel's revenue, and the most profitable area for years, and for years to come...
  • prisonerX - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    This is the future. Single thread performance has reached a dead end and parallelism is the only way forward. Intel's legacy architecture is a millstone around its neck. ARM's open model and efficient implementation will deliver more cores and more performance as software adapts.

    The monopolists monopolise themselves into irrelevance yet again.
  • CajunArson - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    " Intel's legacy architecture is a millstone around its neck."

    I wouldn't call those Xeon-D parts putting up excellent performance at lower prices and vastly lower power consumption levels to be any kind of "millstone".

    "ARM's open model and efficient implementation "

    What's "open" about these Cavium chips exactly? They can only run a few specialized Linux flavors that don't even have the full range of standard PC software available to them.

    What is efficient about a brand-new ARM chip from 2016 losing at performance per watt to the 4.5 year old Sandy Bridge parts that you were insulting?

    As for monopolies, ARM has monopolized the mobile market and brought us "open" ecosystems like the iPhone walled-garden and Android devices that literally never receive security updates. I'd take a plain x86 PC that I can slap Linux on any day of the week over the true monopoly that ARM has over locked-down smartphones.
  • shelbystripes - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    You're right to criticize the "millstone" comment, Intel has done quite well achieving both high performance and high performance-per-watt in their server designs.

    But your comment about a "true monopoly" in the "locked-down smartphone" market is ridiculous. The openness (or lack thereof) that you're complaining about has nothing to do with the CPU architecture at all. An x86 smartphone or tablet can just as easily be locked down, and they are. I own a Dell Venue 8 7000, which is an Android tablet with an Intel Atom SoC inside. It's a great tablet with great hardware. But it's got a bunch of uninstallable crapware installed, Dell abandoned it after 5.1 (it's ridiculous that a tablet with a quad-core 2GHz SoC and 2GB RAM will never see Marshmallow), and the locked smartphone-esque bootloader means I can't repurpose it to a Linux distro even if one existed that supported all the hardware inside this thing.

    On the flipside, the most popular open-source learning/development solution out there right now is the ARM-based Raspberry Pi. There are a number of Linux distros available for it, and everything is OSS, even the GPU driver.
  • TheLightbringer - Thursday, June 16, 2016 - link

    You haven't done your homework.

    Some mobile devices were coming with Intel. But like Microsoft it entered the market too late, without offering any real value. The phrase "Too little, too late" fit them both.

    ARM didn't do a monopoly. They just simply saw an opportunity and embrace it. In the early IBM clone days Intel licensed their architecture to allow competition and broad arrange of products. After the market was won, they went greedy, didn't licensed the architecture anymore and cut a lot of players out, leaving a need for a chip licensing scheme. And that's where ARM got in.

    Google develops Android OS, but is up to phone vendors and carriers to deploy them. And they don't want to for economic reasons. They prefer to sell you a new phone for $$$.

    Intel and MS got in the mobile/car market exactly what they deserve, nothing else.
  • junky77 - Friday, June 17, 2016 - link

    they all greedy. Some just play it smartly or have more luck in decision making
    But, yea, when you read about the way IBM behaved when things were fresh - it's quite amazing. They had much of the market and could do a lot of stuff, but they simply had a very narrow mind set
  • soaringrocks - Wednesday, June 15, 2016 - link

    You make it sound like it's mostly a SW problem, I think it's more complex than that. Actual performance is very dependent on the types of workload and some tasks fit Intel CPUs nicely and the performance per watt for ARM is lacking despite the hype of that architecture being uniquely qualified for low-power. It will be fun to watch how the battle evolves though.

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