Diggin' technology every day

April 1, 2010

New IBM blades based on Intel 7500 announced

Filed under: News,Virtualization — Tags: , , , , , — Nate @ 7:46 pm

The Register had the scoop a while back, but apparently today they were officially announced. IBM did some trickery with the new 7500 series Intel Xeons to accomplish two things:

  • Expand the amount of memory available to the system
  • Be able to “connect” two dual socket blades to form a single quad socket system

Pretty creative, though the end result wasn’t quite as impressive as it sounded up front. Their standard blade chassis is 9U and has 14 slots on it.

  • Each blade is dual socket, maximum 16 cores, and 16 DIMMs
  • Each memory extender offers 24 additional DIMMs

So for the chassis as a whole your talking about 7 dual socket systems with 40 DIMMs each. Or 3 quad socket systems with 80 DIMMs each, and 1 dual socket with 40.

Compared to an Opteron 6100 system, which you can get 8 quad socket systems with 48 DIMMs each in a single enclosure(granted such a system has not been announced yet but I am confident it will be).

  • Intel 7500-based system: 112 CPU cures (1.8Ghz), 280 DIMM slots – 9U
  • Opteron 6100-based system: 384 CPU cores (2.2Ghz), 384 DIMM slots – 10U

And the price of the IBM system is even less impressive –

In a base configuration with a single four-core 1.86 GHz E7520 processor and 8 GB of memory, the BladeCenter HX5 blade costs $4,629. With two of the six-core 2 GHz E7540 processors and 64 GB of memory, the HX5 costs $15,095.

They don’t seem to show pricing for the 8 core 7500-based blade, and say there is no pricing or ETA on the arrival of the memory extenders.

They do say this which is interesting (not surprising) –

The HX5 blade cannot support the top-end eight-core Xeon 7500 parts, which have a 130 watt thermal design point, but it has been certified to support the eight-core L7555, which runs at 1.86 GHz, has 24 MB of L3 cache, and is rated at 95 watts.

I only hope AMD has enough manufacturing capacity to keep up with demand, Opteron 6100s will wipe the floor with the Intel chips on price/performance (for the first time in a while).

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