The new Opteron 6300: Finally Tested!by Johan De Gelas on February 20, 2013 12:03 AM EST
SKUs and Pricing
Before we start with the benchmarks, we first have to check what you get for your money. Let's compare the AMD chips with Intel's offerings.
|AMD vs. Intel 2-socket SKU Comparison|
|High Performance||High Performance|
|High clock / budget||High Clock / Budget|
|Power Optimized||Power Optimized|
We tested two AMD Opterons: the 6376 and the 6380. The 6380 competes against the octal-core 2GHz 2650, the 6376 targets the six-core 2630 at 2.3GHz. There is more than list prices of course. At the end of the day, most of us do not buy trays of processors, we buy server systems. As Dell's website is still the easiest to use, we configured very similar systems on the DELL US site. All systems include:
- Two 500GB SATA drives
- 64GB of 1600MHz RDIMMs
- A PERC H700/710 with 512MB of NV RAM
- iDRAC Express and all other "cheap" options (no OS, Single PSU...)
Below you can find the total price, when configuring such a system in the beginning of February 2013.
|AMD vs. Intel System Price|
|Dell R720||Dual Xeon E5-2630||
|Perc H710 512MB NV||$5008|
|Dell R720||Dual Xeon E5-2660||8x8GB||Perc H710 512MB NV||$6778|
|Dell R715||Dual Opteron 6376||8x8GB||Perc H700 512MB NV||$4225|
|Dell R715||Dual Opteron 6380||8x8GB||Perc H700 512MB NV||$5339|
The Intel based systems have a small advantage as they have two additional hard disk bays, but that difference can be ignored as that will hardly make the system significantly more expensive. The reason why we upgraded the R720 to an 8-bay chassis is that we wanted all the servers to have 2.5-inch bays and thus similar storage systems; 2.5-inch drives are now more common anyway.
A Dell R715 with a dual Opteron 6376 costs $500 less than a similarly configured Dell R720 with Dual Xeon E5-2630, despite the fact that the listed price of the Opteron is slightly higher. This might be a result of AMD offering larger discounts, but it's probably also a result of keeping the platform the same. As the Opteron 6100, 6200 and 6300 use the same socket and motherboard infrastructure, validation costs are very low for the OEMs.
If the Opteron 6376 can beat or even match the Xeon E5-2630 in performance/watt, it can offer a cost advantage. If the Opteron 6380 can come close to an E5-2660, it can offer a significant cost advantage. The latter Opteron must however defeat the E5-2630 clearly to be attractive to the server buyers. After all, most people buy AMD for a cost or performance bonus (preferably both).
We'll compare our new Opterons with two Xeon configurations: the Xeon 2660 and a Xeon 2660 with two cores disabled. To be competitive, the Opteron 6376 should beat the Xeon 2660 with two cores disabled. If the 6380 can offer about 90% of the performance of the 2660 and consume a similar amount of energy, it can become a very attractive alternative as well. So the goals are clear and set for the AMD Opterons. Let us see if they can pull it off.