Supermicro Hyper-Speed Power Consumption and Noise

1
Posted January 23, 2013 by Patrick Kennedy in Servers
Supermicro Hyper-Speed 6027AX-TRF Hotswap PSU

In previous articles, we have looked at the Supermicro Hyper-Speed platform from a number of different angles. An important aspect to keep in mind with these servers is their power consumption. While we have seen a 67% increase in speed with Supermicro Hyper-Speed servers and a greater than 20% memory speed increase, and it is important to see the ongoing cost in terms of power consumption. One other piece of data folks are usually interested in is noise. In this article we will look at both aspects and the impact of enabling Hyper-Speed over base clocks.

Test Configuration

Supermicro sent the following test configuration for our testing, to which we added Kingston Registered ECC DIMMs. This represents one common configuration for a compute node. One other popular configuration is using dual Intel Xeon E5-2643CPUs (4C/8T) for applications where one needs high clock speed and lower core counts due to per-core license costs.

One other configuration change we made was to remove the Mellanox Infiniband cards. The goal was to get the configuration lean for memory benchmarking but also to provide baseline power and noise figures.

Supermicro Hyper-Speed Power Consumption

One question raised in the comments our previous piece with Supermicro Hyper-Speed benchmarks was whether or not the power consumption changed significantly when Hyper-Speed mode is enabled. Today we have results using the Extech 380803 True RMS Power Analyzer we use for power consumption testing.

Supermicro Hyper-Speed Power Consumption

Supermicro Hyper-Speed Power Consumption

As one can see, idle power consumption is very close, in fact too close to call. Load power consumption did go up, but not by a large margin. One must remember that we did not increase vCore or memory voltages. Also, in these servers the CPU and memory are not the only components drawing power so the effect of higher speeds is somewhat muted in terms of overall power consumption. The test server drew under 5A at 120V which is a good metric. In some environments, it may even be enough to fit into 4A usable.

Supermicro Hyper-Speed Noise

This is perhaps one of the most anti-climatic results of testing the Supermicro Hyper-Speed platform. We used the same test setup with our Extech 407764 NIST calibrated sound meter with microphone extension for remote monitoring of the test environment that we use for these tests. One other important note is that we allowed. the system to control fan speed, so the more heat created the faster the fans spin.

Supermicro Hyper-Speed Noise

Supermicro Hyper-Speed Noise

As one can see the results did not change. What we can infer from this is that one way the system is keeping power consumption in check is by keeping fan speeds at similar speeds based on loads and heat generated. Temperatures stayed within a 1C margin between the tests after 12 hours of heat soak, so the cooling is clearly working.

Conclusion

Overall a strong showing for the Supermicro Hyper-Speed server. There is a power consumption change by enabling Hyper-Speed, but this is very much in-line with performance increases. Keeping a reasonable power profile is also helped by the 80+ Platinum power supplies and the fact that the fans seem to cool the system with ease under load.


About the Author

Patrick Kennedy

Patrick has been running ServeTheHome since 2009 and covers a wide variety of home and small business IT topics. For his day job, Patrick is a management consultant focused in the technology industry and has worked with numerous large hardware and storage vendors in the Silicon Valley. The goal of STH is simply to help users find some information about basic server building blocks. If you have any helpful information please feel free to post on the forums.

One Comment


  1.  
    Meat

    Not bad results at all.





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