Today Intel launched its newest workstation processors. The Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 family is intended to fill the gap between the E5-2600 V4 line and the E3-1200 V5 and E3-1500 V5 lines for single socket workstations. The Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 family can have 4 to 8 cores and maximum Turbo Boost speeds of 3.8 to 4.0GHz. There are a total of five new SKUs, two eight core, one six core and two four core parts.
The Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 Family
We took the four new SKUs in the Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 family and compared them to the other workstation options, namely the Intel Xeon E5-2687W V4 and the top CPUs in the E3 V5 lines.
We tried to show relevant data about where the Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 fits into the line-up, and think this is fairly close. The five Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 chips are single socket only and do not have an integrated GPU. With the 6 and 8 core models Intel has workstation chips that maintain a high clock speed but also have more to offer in terms of cores than the Xeon E3 V5 line. For applications that require high single-threaded performance, but more than 4 cores, the Intel Xeon E5-1650 V4, Xeon E5-1660 V4 and E5-1680 V4 chips are a good fit. A benefit of using the single socket family is that they are much less expensive than the Intel Xeon E5-2687W V4 which sells for over $2000.
With the quad core models the major differentiation point is the ability to use 4 memory channels, not 2. In addition to the quad memory channel support, the Intel Xeon E5-1600 V4 family can support RDIMMs. Practically speaking, that means that while the E3 V5 family is limited to 64GB of RAM, the E5 family can use 64GB RDIMMs in each of the four slots without issue. The memory capacity is an enormous advantage these days. In addition, the LGA2011-3 platform that the Intel Xeon E5 V4 series uses has 40 PCIe 3.0 lanes per CPU and the C612 chipset can support 10x SATA III ports per system. Even with the Intel Xeon E5-1620 V4 and E5-1630 V4 chips being quad core, the overall platform they reside in is much more capable than the E3 series.
We were a bit disappointed to see the limitation of 8 cores in this iteration. Even the $650 Intel Xeon E5-2630 V4 has 10 cores, albeit at much lower base clock frequencies. Intel is also breaking parity between the E5-1600 V4 line and the consumer focused Core i7-6900 line-up as the Core i7-6950X is a 10 core part. On the other hand, the Intel Xeon E5-1600 family generally offers a good price/ performance ratio and being able to access the higher-end LGA2011-3 platform has a lot of advantages if one is not concerned with ultra-low power use.