Read in full version 09/19/2023 21:22, Nikolay Khizhnyak At the Innovation 2023 event, Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger announced that a 288-core processor will be released among the 5th generation Xeon server chips in the Sierra Forest family. Let us recall that Sierra Forest chips will consist entirely of energy-efficient E-cores with support for only one thread. The company previously announced plans to release Sierra Forest with up to 144 cores. Image source: Tom’s Hardware The new Sierra Forest processors, using an E-core architecture, are designed to provide maximum multi-threaded performance for scale-out, cloud and container environments. You can read more about them here. One of the key features of these chips is the use of a chiplet design. The computing cores of processors are located in chiplets based on the Intel 3 process technology, and the Intel 7 process technology is used for auxiliary chiplets with memory controllers, input/output (I/O) interfaces, chiplets responsible for implementing PCIe, CXL and UPI buses, as well as for various auxiliary accelerators. The decision to release the 288-core Sierra Forest model is not surprising, since these processors use the same structure as the server Xeon Granite Rapids with high-performance P-cores, where up to three computing chiplets with cores can be “stitched” using EMIB interconnect technology. Intel, on the other hand, can accommodate up to 144 E-cores in one chiplet, and the company placed two such crystals on one substrate. Intel Sierra Forest. Image source: Wild_C/X As reported by Tom’s Hardware, Intel recently accidentally released a press video showing what the packaging of the 144-core Sierra Forest processor looks like. The chip consists of one large central die with computing E-cores, as well as two auxiliary die with input-output interfaces. Intel Granite Rapids. Image source: Wild_C / X The same Intel Granite Rapids uses three large central chiplets with cores and two auxiliary ones. The similarity of the processor structure hints that Intel may in the future release processor models with three large chiplets, which will contain a total of up to 432 computing E-cores. Intel Sierra Forest will compete in the server segment with 128- and 256-core AMD Bergamo processors, which also use the Zen 4c approach to using small, energy-efficient cores. AMD Bergamo processors are already on the market. Sierra Forest will be available in the first half of next year. Intel has already announced plans to release a second generation of Xeon processors based on E-cores in the form of the Clearwater Forest series. AMD, in turn, has not yet announced the successor to the Bergamo series. As part of the Innovation 2023 conference, Intel also confirmed that the 5th generation Xeon processors in the Granite Rapids series will hit the market on December 14th. They will have to compete with AMD’s 5th generation EPYC Turin series chips. True, the latter are expected only by the end of 2024.
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