Inspur NF5180M5 Flexible 1U Server Review

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Inspur Systems NF5180M5 Power Consumption

Our Inspur NF5180M5 test server used a dual 800W power supply configuration. The PSUs are 80Plus Platinum level units.

Inspur Systems NF5180M5 Rear IO And PCIe 2 With 800W PSUs
Inspur Systems NF5180M5 Rear IO And PCIe 2 With 800W PSUs

We needed to use both PSUs in order to power our test configuration. Inspur offers higher-wattage PSUs, up to 1.3kW, which we would recommend if you are using heavy accelerators, storage, or Intel Xeon Platinum CPUs like the Platinum 8280 processors.

  • Idle: 0.1kW
  • STH CPU 70% Load: 0.3kW
  • 100% Load AVX2 (GROMACS): 0.5kW
  • Maximum Observed: 0.6kW

Note these results were taken using a 208V Schneider Electric / APC PDU at 17.7C and 72% RH. Our testing window shown here had a +/- 0.3C and +/- 2% RH variance.

STH Server Spider: Inspur NF5180M5

In the second half of 2018, we introduced the STH Server Spider as a quick reference to where a server system’s aptitude lies. Our goal is to start giving a quick visual depiction of the types of parameters that a server is targeted at.

STH Server Spider Inspur NF5180M5
STH Server Spider Inspur NF5180M5

Here we can see increased densities over the Inspur Systems NF5280M5 we reviewed previously. Much of this is because of the 1U form factor. It also is because of how flexible Inspur has made the platform with different storage configuration options and a large set of PCIe expansion card options for the platform.

Final Words

In the server industry, the 1U platform is still considered by many to be the standard. Deviating from the 1U platform to add more compute density (e.g. 2U 4-node systems) or more storage/ expansion card capabilities means that other systems are compared to the yardstick that is the 1U server.

Here, the Inspur NF5180M5 does not disappoint. It is very well laid out. There are a huge number of storage configuration options including up to four M.2 SSDs without even using an expansion slot. Three expansion slots plus two OCP networking ports mean that one can add many new features such as a NVIDIA Tesla T4 for AI inferencing. Further, the NF5180M5 supports Intel’s entire LGA3647 SKU stack making it able to service low power and even high-performance scenarios.

One item we would have liked to have seen is onboard dual 1GbE networking as we know many of our users use 1GbE for provisioning. With dual OCP networking slots, we understand this omission as one can configure an adapter, even a 10GbE adapter in one slot for provisioning while the other is used for data.

Prior to starting this review, we were told that the Inspur NF5180M5 is a very popular model in the US and EMEA markets. The flexibility this system offers is a clear reason for that.

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REVIEW OVERVIEW
Design & Aesthetics
9.4
Performance
9.5
Feature Set
9.5
Value
9.3
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Patrick has been running STH since 2009 and covers a wide variety of SME, SMB, and SOHO IT topics. Patrick is a consultant 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 server, storage and networking, building blocks. If you have any helpful information please feel free to post on the forums.

4 COMMENTS

  1. They are not going to get a lot of sales with their current “purchase/contact us page”. The serve details page is also not elaborate. TS860G3 info page have all product images broken.

    If they showed at least ballpark price, lead-in times, available components(what ‘Intel Xeon Scalable’ are supported?) and put at least some attention to the form, it might be better.

  2. @altmind
    Yea, it’s interesting to read about the these challenger brands, but frustrating that they don’t offer any outlet besides wholesale bulk purchases and then they make it difficult to find out any real information on their products.

    The big brands need challenging, it’s what keeps the market vibrant, but when I read a glowing review for a product you cannot practically buy, it’s somewhat disappointing.

  3. This server is available in the market. Inspur in over 110 countries and regions across the globe. You should check on their website.

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