Today, AMD releases their new 45nm Opterons, codenamed Shanghai. It's been a very quiet year for AMD on the server front, after a fairly rough launch of Barcelona, but AMD hopes to regain consumer confidence and earn back some market share from Intel.

A little history

Barcelona was AMD's first product based on their monolithic quad-core design, which was a very different path from what Intel decided to take. Intel decided effectively to join two dual-core CPUs at the hip to make their quad-core product. Barcelona was not a smooth launch. Hindered by CPU design issues and supply problems, it was one of the worst launches we've seen from AMD. However, today is a new day, a new part, and hopefully new customers.

Shanghai is an update to the Barcelona architecture, which means it is socket compatible and should be a drop-in replacement in servers that have a BIOS update that supports Shanghai. Something that some people might not realize is that AMD uses the same core product in their 2P, 4P, and 8P product lines. This may not matter to everyone, but it makes the life of OEMs a little easier. Besides the various tweaks to the Barcelona architecture, Shanghai is also a die shrink to 45nm. As AMD has already revealed in their 2009/2010 roadmap, Shanghai will be with us until the end of 2009 as a quad-core chip, followed by a six-core product when AMD releases Istanbul. Shanghai will ship in several different clock speeds, listed below.

AMD Shanghai Overview
Model CPU Clock MC Clock Part Number Price
Opteron 2384 2.7GHz 2.2GHz OS2384WAL4DGI $989
Opteron 2382 2.6GHz 2.2GHz OS2382WAL4DGI $873
Opteron 2380 2.5GHz 2.0GHz OS2380WAL4DGI $698
Opteron 2378 2.4GHz 2.0GHz OS2378WAL4DGI $523
Opteron 2376 2.3GHz 2.0GHz OS2376WAL4DGI $377
Opteron 8384 2.7GHz 2.2GHz OS8384WAL4DGI $2149
Opteron 8382 2.6GHz 2.2GHz OS8382WAL4DGI $1865
Opteron 8380 2.5GHz 2.0GHz OS8380WAL4DGI $1514
Opteron 8378 2.4GHz 2.0GHz OS8378WAL4DGI $1165

All of the Shanghai parts that release this year will be 75W versions, ranging from 2.3 to 2.7GHz. In Q1 of 2009, AMD expects to release HE (55W) models as well as SE (105W) models. Another change that's coming next year is the move to HyperTransport 3.0, which will increase bandwidth by up to 17.6GB/s. We found it a bit odd that there will be effectively an update to the architecture to support this move, and that this feature didn't make this initial product release.

What's new with Shanghai? / Test Setup
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  • piesquared - Wednesday, November 19, 2008 - link

    I mean really, how many times AT? You didn't seem to have a problem with i7 results, what's the hold up? Or is this going to be another dfi790, 790fx, 790gx, 780g etc, etc, etc, type of review. You know, the kind where you pay lip service to it, and then go back to cuddling up with Intel.... Frauds
  • LTG - Friday, November 14, 2008 - link

    Another power variable I didn't see in the review - The harpertown that matches AMD's price listed is the lower TDP model.

    The E5450 is 80w TDP
    The X5450 is 120w TDP
  • LTG - Friday, November 14, 2008 - link

    Sorry just found it on the benchmark graphs - looks to be the "E" version.
  • LTG - Friday, November 14, 2008 - link

    It would be very helpful to know this because almost all new Intel systems support the lower voltage FB-DIMMs.

  • segerstein - Friday, November 14, 2008 - link

    Yes, the future will be Muslim. AMD is going to get bought by rich UAEs. The next architecture will be called Istanbul.

    Why not Byzantium or Constantinople?
  • Tormeh - Saturday, November 15, 2008 - link

    Maybe because Istanbul is an actual place, and not just a historic name?
  • alpha754293 - Thursday, November 13, 2008 - link

    You mentioned in this brief review that the FB-DIMMS remove any power efficiency advantage that the Intels othewise might have had.

    Does the AMD systems also use the FB-DIMMS?

    Also, how are you measuring the power consumption because a lot of the charts/graphs look nearly exactly identical, which would seem odd unless it was using the CPU (i.e. all of the application profiles) were EXACTLY identical.
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, November 13, 2008 - link

    AMD does *not* use FB-DIMMs, and very likely never will. The power penalty appears to be something like 7W per FB-DIMM, possibly even a bit more, and the performance advantage... well, it doesn't exist. FB-DIMM was an idea to add more memory on a single channel at the cost of increasing latency. I just don't think it really made enough of a difference to affect the vast majority of server users.
  • Johnniewalker - Thursday, November 13, 2008 - link

    Now that would be cool!
  • acejj26 - Thursday, November 13, 2008 - link

    Memory frequency is now 800 MHz. Bandwidth is a function of the frequency, but they are not the same.

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