Dual AMD EPYC 7601 Benchmarks Part 1
For our testing, we are splitting up the benchmarks into a few different segments. This Part 1 is intended to provide a glimpse into EPYC compared to the legacy tests we have been running for years. While we bent our standard setup in terms of OS and tool chains and re-ran comparative data. We are still running these legacy tests to provide a glimpse of what was. Many organizations have VMs and applications that are going to move directly to EPYC from E5 V1 or V2 servers without much effort in re-tooling.
The next set of numbers for Part 2 we will have an expanded comparison set. We will also have applications such as Elasticsearch, Redis (expanded), Ansys/ LS Dyna results, GROMACS, containerized workloads, greatly expanded OpenSSL testing and more. We have been running the new test set on several dozen configurations to ensure consistency, but we are still building a comparison set. At 10-14 days per run this data simply takes time to build.
For our Part 1 testing, we are using Linux-Bench scripts which help us see cross platform “least common denominator” results.
Python Linux 4.4.2 Kernel Compile Benchmark
This is one of the most requested benchmarks for STH over the past few years. The task was simple, we have a standard configuration file, the Linux 4.4.2 kernel from kernel.org, and make the standard auto-generated configuration utilizing every thread in the system. We are expressing results in terms of compiles per hour to make the results easier to read.
Here is the key takeaway: use DDR4-2666. Also, in terms of where Intel and AMD are competing, it is the $3200-$4200 price point. We already published our Intel Xeon Gold 6150 benchmarks which included some EPYC results. As one can see, on this test, the 18 core / 36 thread Intel Xeon Gold 6150 at around $3300 is competitive with the $4200 AMD EPYC 7601 part. We expect when we finish 2P Gold series benchmarks closer to the $4200 price point Intel will be competitive with AMD here.
As we are going to see, AMD excels in several of our other workloads. We are going to revisit a subset of these results at the end so keep reading.
c-ray 1.1 Performance
We have been using c-ray for our performance testing for years now. It is a ray tracing benchmark that is extremely popular to show differences in processors under multi-threaded workloads.
In all of these types of benchmarks, AMD does simply awesome. We have seen it since the Ryzen 7 launch. There is a reason AMD uses Cinebench R15 so heavily in its marketing. Incidentally, we did test an Intel Xeon Platinum 8180 quad system that was so fast Cinebench R15 broke.
We started using c-ray in the Sandy Bridge generation when doing a 4K render seemed big. You will notice that over the years, many sites adopted our “hard” test which I made up by using 4K resolution which seemed hard at the time. Realizing that “hard” is starting to get demolished, we are going to add a new 8K class in Part 2 and have a few dozen configurations both physical and cloud finished.
7-zip Compression Performance
7-zip is a widely used compression/ decompression program that works cross platform. We started using the program during our early days with Windows testing. It is now part of Linux-Bench.
Here we see solid results from the AMD EPYC platform. We like the platform’s ability to run existing workloads effectively.
NAMD is a molecular modeling benchmark developed by the Theoretical and Computational Biophysics Group in the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. More information on the benchmark can be found here. We are going to augment this with GROMACS in the next-generation Linux-Bench in the near future. With GROMACS we have been working hard to support Intel’s Skylake AVX-512 and AVX2 supporting AMD Zen architecture. Here are the comparison results for the legacy data set:
Here you can see with a least common denominator view, AMD EPYC does very well here. We are going to preview our GROMACS result near the end of this article. That is frankly more applicable to today’s work in this area.
Sysbench CPU test
Sysbench is another one of those widely used Linux benchmarks. We specifically are using the CPU test, not the OLTP test that we use for some storage testing.
Here AMD EPYC does very well. We should be getting Xeon Gold 6152’s shortly which should close the gap considerably. We also added a few single socket results to this picture to give additional breadth to the discussion.
OpenSSL is widely used to secure communications between servers. This is an important protocol in many server stacks. We first look at our sign tests:
This is one area that will be greatly expanded in Part 2. Frankly, we underestimated the demand for this data when we did the first Linux-Bench tests. We also wanted to make this CPU rather than accelerator bound but will be expanding that viewpoint in the next round.
UnixBench Dhrystone 2 and Whetstone Benchmarks
One of our longest running tests is the venerable UnixBench 5.1.3 Dhrystone 2 and Whetstone results. They are certainly aging, however, we constantly get requests for them, and many angry notes when we leave them out. UnixBench is widely used so we are including it in this data set. Here are the Dhrystone 2 results:
And the Whetstone results:
Overall, EPYC does well and has chart topping performance which we would expect from a 64 core/ 128 thread implementation.
With these results, we wanted to pivot into a conversation that drives a huge portion of the enterprise segment. What kind of per-core performance are we seeing?