Intel's 32 nm Xeon Server Processors Offer up to 10 Cores

By Ashok Bindra April 06, 2011

To give IT departments the muscle to handle new computing demands, including business intelligence, real-time data analytics and virtualization, processor giant Intel corp. has launched a new family of server processors that accelerate mission-critical computing.

Based on 32 nm process technology, the new Intel Xeon processor family, E7-8800/4800/2800, offer up to 10 cores with Intel hyper-threading technology. Setting a new standard for high-end computing using x86 based server processors, the new Xeon E7 processors also provide advanced security features that ensure greater data integrity, according to Intel.

Intel said that the new Xeon E7 processors deliver up to 40 percent greater performance than the Intel Xeon 7500 series processor. Concurrently, a new energy-saving feature reduces the power draw of idle portions of the chip. The manufacturer said that more than 35 systems based on the Intel Xeon processor E7 family are expected to ship from manufacturers around the world.

"Intel has been changing the economics for mission-critical computing server deployments for more than a decade, and today we are raising the bar yet again," said Kirk Skaugen, vice president and general manager of Intel's Data Center Group, in a statement.

He added, "The new Intel Xeon processor E7 family delivers record breaking performance with powerful new security, reliability and energy efficiency enhancements. The industry momentum we're seeing for this new server processor architecture is unparalleled in Intel's history. The days of IT organizations being forced to deploy expensive, closed RISC architectures for mission-critical applications are nearing an end."

According to Intel, the new Xeon family contains 18 of the latest processors for two-, four- and eight-socket servers, and is expandable to servers with 256 sockets. It also sets more than a dozen world records in performance.

A 40 percent improvement in generational compute-intensive performance can enhance the pace and accuracy of applications in such fields as scientific research and financial services where speed is essential, said the maker. With up to 25 percent better performance with virtual machine applications than the current generation, the new chips also hold the industry's highest virtualization performance, claimed Intel.

Furthermore, to address rising energy costs, the new Xeon chips include Intel Intelligent Power technology that dynamically reduces idle power consumption of the chip based on the workload while also delivering advanced processor power-management capabilities.

Recognizing the need for compute-intensive applications ranging from climate modeling to real-time business analytics, Intel is offering 10 advanced 10-core versions of the chip, led by the E7-8870, E7-4870 and E7-2870, all of which reach 2.4 GHz with a thermal design point (TDP) of 130 Watts.

Concurrently, Intel also unveiled a version of the chip that combines the benefits of high performance with low voltage, as well as a frequency-optimized version. The 10-core low-voltage E7-8867L reaches 2.13 GHz with a TDP of 105 Watts, while the eight-core frequency-optimized E7-8837 tops out at 2.67 GHz with a TDP of 130 Watts.

The Xeon processor E7-8800/4800/2800 families range in price from $774 to $4,616 in quantities of 1,000.


Ashok Bindra is a veteran writer and editor with more than 25 years of editorial experience covering RF/wireless technologies, semiconductors and power electronics. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Janice McDuffee

TechZone360 Contributor

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