Presumably by accident, Intel this week has published a list of its upcoming processors that belong to the soon-to-launch Skylake Xeon families. The names were published by Intel in a PCN, or Product Change Notification, which makes it likely that this was an accidental disclosure.

In the PCN, it details that LGA3647 CPUs (which covers Xeon Phi processors and the upcoming Skylake Xeons) will have an arrow indicating which way processors should be oriented in the socket. It seems like an arbitrary PCN, just printing an arrow on a heat spreader, which makes this published list somewhat unexpected. But these names show the key parts of the Purley platforms for servers.

One of the poorly kept secrets in the industry over the last few weeks is that Intel is changing the nomenclature of its Xeon CPUs going forward. This will be a difficult change to explain, given that users are so familiar with the previous naming system, and the translation between old and new is not a simple one-to-one mapping. Skylake-SP thus introduces the new Xeon Gold and Xeon Platinum lineups for different markets of servers. We expect all these CPUs to be on LGA3647, given that the PCN seems to suggest that this singular print marking on the heatspreader was not on this socket design before.

Unfortunately, the published list does not have full CPU information, but we do get names and frequencies of 34 Skylake-SP processors (see details below) that will belong to the Xeon Gold and Xeon Platinum lineups, as well as the fact that these processors are designated with the H0 stepping. We might not see all these processors at launch (which at this time has still not officially been announced), and we expect Intel to expand the Xeon Gold/Platinum family with new models over the several quarters following the launch.

Based on the document, the initial Xeon Gold family will consist of 20 processors featuring 5000- and 6000-series model numbers. The Xeon Platinum lineup will feature 14 chips belonging to the 8000-series.

Basic Specifications of Intel Xeon Gold and Platinum CPUs
Model Freq.
Xeon Platinum 8180M 2.5 GHz CD8067303192101 SR37T
Xeon Platinum 8180 CD8067303314400 SR377
Xeon Platinum 8176M 2.1 GHz CD8067303133605 SR37U
Xeon Platinum 8176 CD8067303314700 SR37A
Xeon Platinum 8170M CD8067303319201 SR3BD
Xeon Platinum 8170 CD8067303327601 SR37H
Xeon Platinum 8168 2.7 GHz CD8067303327701 SR37J
Xeon Platinum 8164 2.0 GHz CD8067303408800 SR3BB
Xeon Platinum 8160T 2.1 GHz CD8067303592800 SR3J6
Xeon Platinum 8160M CD8067303406600 SR3B8
Xeon Platinum 8160 CD8067303405600 SR3B0
Xeon Platinum 8158 3.0 GHz CD8067303406500 SR3B7
Xeon Platinum 8156 3.6 GHz CD8067303368800 SR3AV
Xeon Platinum 8153 2.0 GHz CD8067303408900 SR3BA
Xeon Gold 6154 3.0 GHz CD8067303592700 SR3J5
Xeon Gold 6152 2.1 GHz CD8067303406000 SR3B4
Xeon Gold 6150 2.7 GHz CD8067303328000 SR37K
Xeon Gold 6148 2.4 GHz CD8067303406200 SR3B6
Xeon Gold 6142M 2.6 GHz CD8067303405700 SR3B1
Xeon Gold 6142 2.6 GHz CD8067303405400 SR3AY
Xeon Gold 6140M 2.3 GHz CD8067303405500 SR3AZ
Xeon Gold 6140 2.3 GHz CD8067303405200 SR3AX
Xeon Gold 6138T 2.0 GHz CD8067303592900 SR3J7
Xeon Gold 6138 2.0 GHz CD8067303406100 SR3B5
Xeon Gold 6136 3.0 GHz CD8067303405800 SR3B2
Xeon Gold 6134M 3.2 GHz CD8067303330402 SR3AS
Xeon Gold 6134 3.2 GHz CD8067303330302 SR3AR
Xeon Gold 6132 2.6 GHz CD8067303592500 SR3J3
Xeon Gold 6130T 2.1 GHz CD8067303593000 SR3J8
Xeon Gold 6130 2.1 GHz CD8067303409000 SR3B9
Xeon Gold 6128 3.4 GHz CD8067303592600 SR3J4
Xeon Gold 6126T 2.6 GHz CD8067303593100 SR3J9
Xeon Gold 6126 2.6 GHz CD8067303405900 SR3B3
Xeon Gold 5122 3.6 GHz CD8067303330702 SR3AT

Most importantly, the PCN confirms that Intel is about to scrap its Xeon E5/E7 naming nomenclature for something different with the introduction of the Skylake-SP/EP processors. Instead of E5 and E7, Intel will call its CPUs for 2P and 4P/MP servers Xeon Gold and Xeon Platinum. Moreover, the feature-sets of chips aimed at different kinds of servers will also be different, just like today. The upcoming Xeon Gold CPUs will work in 2P configurations and will thus replace the existing Xeon E5-series. Meanwhile, it is logical to assume then the replacement for the Xeon E7 will be called the Xeon Platinum, and apart from higher maximum core count will also support various additional capabilities, including RAS features. We suspect that there will be more names than Gold and Platinum coming to market to cover other aspects of Intel's product stack.

In the processor stack above, we also get T and M processors in the mix. T processors have historically been lower power processors, and this is likely still the case given that the T processors have lower frequencies than most of the rest of the CPUs. Some CPUs, like the Xeon Gold 6130 and 6130T, are at 2.0 GHz for both: this is likely relating to different turbo frequencies, but also the T product is binned for lower power. The M processors are somewhat of a mystery, as we've never had M on a processor before, except in mobile. Speculating a bit on our part, this could be a reference to MCDRAM, which is a feature we see on Xeon Phi processors. Although to be clear, we have nothing to suggest that Intel will be including MCDRAM on these parts, as the Xeon CPU die itself may be big and the MCDRAM silicon is also relatively sizeable. We suspect that the M processors will have a given feature or features in common, which might come at an extra expense in the final price tag.

In previous generations, Intel typically creates three different core designs for it's latest Xeons: a low core count (LCC), medium/high core count (MCC/HCC, depending on the document), and an extreme core count (XCC) version. The XCC version has the highest amount of cores, the most cache, and costs the most, but typically the per-core frequency is low. Intel sometimes offers the XCC in a small core count configuration, but with a large cache, and something like the Xeon Platinum 8156 at 3.6 GHz most likely fits that description. One of the things that should seem obvious is that the naming of each processor is not linear with clock frequency. For example, the Gold 6150 runs at 2.7 GHz base, but the Gold 6152 runs at 2.1 GHz base. Using that fourth digit extensively means that we hope Intel has a strong and obvious way to describe which part of the CPU names mean specific things. At this point it is hard to see a specific pattern, given we do not know core counts.

Disclaimer: There's a significant amount of information in the ecosystem about the upcoming Skylake-SP platform, mostly from leaks that we can't personally confirm. So while we appreciate there is information out there, we've kept this analysis specifically to what is confirmed or could be inferred, as per AnandTech policy.

Source: Intel (via Computerbase)

Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • willis936 - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    *audible smack of hand on forehead
  • colinstu - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    So are Xeon E3 going to become "Xeon Silver"? lol
  • creed3020 - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    Quite likely Silver would be used next for those CPUs below Gold. This feels very WDC with the colour/precious metals similarity. It will definitely get funny that these levels have to scale beyond this release up and down. I was to see Xeon Diamond!
  • MrSpadge - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    Waiting for Xeon Xenon, personally.
  • Samus - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link this is so stupid their marketing department needs to be fired. Intel doesn't even need a CPU marketing department, everyone already knows what's what.

    Changing names and product categories seems to be a way of the marketing debt guaranteeing their survival.
  • johnp_ - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    IIRC "E3 v7" should become "Xeon Bronze" 3000 Series with <10 Cores on LGA-2066
  • Flunk - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    I really don't think the names of server CPUs matter at all. It's not like a consumer product, which someone might be swayed into buying a more expensive chip because "it needs to be an i7", like the hilariously named -U mobile chips that are all slower than an -H series mobile i3.

    Although I really can't complain the names are worse than the previous ones. This is the same company that kept the exact same CPU names for ages and just changed the version number at the end. That naming scheme was totally asinine.
  • Meteor2 - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    Yeah, but it also made perfect sense.
  • JoeyJoJo123 - Thursday, April 27, 2017 - link

    Not sure about the new naming scheme. E5 or E7 series was a choice between cost, performance, core count, cache size, multi-processor scalability, etc.

    Calling it gold/platinum is a very cheesy way to artificially inflate the "premiumness" of the product without changing it at a core level. All this really does is entice higher management into saying YES to procuring a "platinum" level processor over "gold" level processor. Non-tech-savvy management wouldn't otherwise care between E5 and E7 and should (in most cases) rightfully pick the more cost-effective solution.

    I preferred the E5/E7 differentiation, as it was analagous to the consumer i5/i7 branding, but E would stand for Enterprise or something, I guess.
  • mode_13h - Sunday, April 30, 2017 - link

    No, you've got it exactly wrong. This is going to BACK FIRE!! IT departments will get told by accounting & various MBAs: "Gee, I don't think we really need platinum. Let's go with Silver."

    When it was an obscure product code and some features they didn't understand, they kept their mouths shut, not wanting to appear ignorant. But EVERYBODY knows precious metals.

    Intel should've used the precious metals names on ignorant consumers, and kept the quasi-meaningful product codes for the market segment that makes their purchasing decisions based on rational understanding of the products.

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now