Intel on Tuesday lifted the curtain on its Xeon E5-2600 family of processors, promising that the new dual-socket server and workstation chips will provide up to 80 percent better performance than the company's previous generation of dual-socket Xeon 5600 series processors.
The 17 new processors range in price from $198 for the quad-core, 1.8GHz E5-2603 to the top-of-the line, 2.9GHz E5-2690, which boasts eight cores, 16 threads, 20MB of L3 cache, and will set you back $2,057.
Intel is positioning the new Xeon lineup squarely at data centers providing cloud services, said Diane Bryant, vice president and general manager of Intel's Data Center and Connected Systems Group, speaking at a launch event in San Francisco. The E5-2600 was previously code-named "Sandy Bridge".
"The growth in cloud computing and connected devices is transforming the way businesses benefit from IT products and services," she said. "For businesses to capitalize on these innovations, the industry must address unprecedented demand for efficient, secure and high-performing datacenter infrastructure. The Intel Xeon processor E5-2600 product family is designed to address these challenges by offering unparalleled, balanced performance across compute, storage and network, while reducing operating costs."
Bryant said several new technologies added to the latest of Intel's Sandy Bridge-based server chips improved performance, energy efficiency, and security as compared with the Westmere-based Xeon 5600 series of products released over 2010 and 2011. She said numerous Intel partners were already building servers, storage systems, and networking hardware around Intel's new E5 processors.
Intel's new Integrated I/O technology takes a previously distinct I/O hub and integrates it directly into the processor package itself. Combined with PCI Express 3.0 (the E5 series is Intel's first to support the next-generation bus standard), that can triple the pace at which data moves into and out of the processor, greatly increasing performance.
Intel has also further baked its Advanced Encryption Standard-New Instructions (AES-NI) and Intel Trusted Execution (TXT) technologies into the new chips, Bryant said. That means data can be encrypted faster and both while at rest and in transit for the first time, while improvements to TXT mean data center managers can now identify and quarantine compromised chipsets or even individual virtual machines (VMs) much faster and get clean assets and VMs back online and running without having to shut down entire systems or hypervisors.
Meanwhile, Intel's improved Node Manager and Data Center Manager consoles, released alongside the E5 series, provide deeper visibility into how systems using the new chips are running to give data center managers better control over power management.
The new chips represent one of the last big product launches for processors fabricated with Intel's 32-nanometer process technology. The chip giant should be releasing as many as a dozen more 32nm dual-socket and four-socket Xeon parts based on the Sandy Bridge microarchitecture in the next few months, but after that Intel will begin to roll out its next-generation Ivy Bridge-based chips which utilize the 22nm process.
In addition to the release of the E5 series of products, Intel on Tuesday also launched three single-socket Xeon E5-1600 series chips that also drop into the new LGA 2011 socket which was released last November and will be compatible with future Ivy Bridge processors.
Here's the breakdown of specs and pricing for Intel's new Xeon E5-2600 series processors, plus the three 1600 series chips released Tuesday:
XEON E5-2600 SERIES
Eight Cores, 16 Threads
- Xeon E5-2687W (3.1GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 150W): $1,885
- Xeon E5-2690 (2.9GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 135W): $2,057
- Xeon E5-2680Where to buy 207413 (2.7GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 130W): $1,723
- Xeon E5-2670 (2.6GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 115W): $1,552
- Xeon E5-2665 (2.4GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 115W): $1,440
- Xeon E5-2660 (2.2GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 95W): $1,329
- Xeon E5-2650 (2.0GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 95W): $1,106
- Xeon E5-2650L (1.8GHz, 20MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 70W): $1,552
Six Cores, 12 Threads
- Xeon E5-2667 (2.9GHz, 15MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 130W): $1,552
- Xeon E5-2640 (2.5GHz, 15MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 95W): $884
- Xeon E5-2630 (2.3GHz, 15MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 95W): $612
- Xeon E5-2620 (2.0GHz, 15MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 95W): $406
- Xeon E5-2630L (XGHz, 15MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 60W): $662
Four Cores, Eight Threads
- Xeon E5-2643 (3.3GHz, 10MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 130W): $884
Four Cores, Four Threads
- Xeon E5-2609 (2.4GHz, 10MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1066, 80W): $294
- Xeon E5-2603 (1.8GHz, 10MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1066, 80W): $202
Two Cores, Four Threads
- Xeon E5-2637 (3.0GHz, 5MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1600, 80W): $884
XEON E5-1600 Series
Six Cores, 12 Threads
- Xeon E5-1660 (3.3GHz, 15MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 130W): $1,080
- Xeon E5-1650 (3.2GHz, 12MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 130W): $583
Four Cores, Eight Threads
- Xeon E5-1620 (3.6GHz, 10MB L3 Cache, 4x DDR3-1333, 130W): $294
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