Quick Explanation of The Differences Between Intel Xeon and AMD Epyc Server CPU’s

If you want to distill the argument between Intel Xeon and AMD Epyc server processors down to three things, they would be:

  1. AMD’s interconnection of the Cores on Epyc is much slower than on Intel Xeon’s
  2. AMD Epyc CPU’s are faster than Intel Xeon in memory intensive applications
  3. In general, Intel Xeon and AMD Epyc provide similar performance per dollar

 

Here is a nice summary of what is different between Intel Xeon vs AMD Epyc server CPUs:

amd-epyc-vs-intel-xeon-processor-comparison

As you can see below, according to Intel’s benchmarks, AMD Epyc CPU’s perform better in memory intensive applications and AMD Epyc supports more RAM slots:

amd-epyc-performance-vs-intel-benchmark-hpc

but the performance is highly variable:amd-epyc-performance-vs-intel-performance-variation

because of the way the way AMD connected the cores:
amd-epyc-performance-vs-intel-network-workloads

amd-epyc-performance-latency

 

Intel Xeon prices compared to AMD Epyc are the same, IF you look at benchmark performance per dollar and not Ghz:

amd-epyc-vs-intel-xeon-pricing

Intel chipsets also take some of the load from the CPU and AMD chipsets do not:

intel-moves-some-compute-fromCPU-to-chipset-via-QuickAssist

In normal usage, Intel Xeon CPU’s outperform  AMD Epyc CPU’s particularly in database applications:

amd-epyc-performance-vs-intel-benchmark

One more ‘capper’ is you will not be able to migrate Intel hosted physical servers to AMD hosted virtual machines:

…while the two architectures are x86 based, VMs require “exact” in order to migrate successfully. Intel CPUs would not be able to migrate to an AMD built up VM infrastructure. VMs built on Intel can migrate back and forth on Broadwell and SKylake CPUs.

amd-epyc-migration-to-vm

 

For more information see:

amd.com/en/products/epyc 

and

intel.com/content/www/us/en/products/processors/xeon.html

 

Questions or Comments?