MikroTik CRS520-4XS-16XQ-RM 16-port 100GbE Switch Announced

11
MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Open Video 2
MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Open Video 2

Today, we are changing coverages because a switch we have been excited about has finally been announced. The MikroTik CRS520-4XS-16XQ-RM with 16 ports of 100GbE has been announced, marking a significant move upmarket for the company.

MikroTik CRS520-4XS-16XQ-RM 16-port 100GbE Switch Announced

We heard about the MikroTik CRS520-4XS-16XQ-RM a little bit ago and expect to have one to review in the coming weeks. On the front, one can see 16-port 100GbE and 4-port 25GbE. There is then a serial console port and two additional multi-gigabit 10Gbase-T ports. We guess that these 10Gbase-T ports are for out-of-band management duties.

MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Front Video
MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Front Video

The switch features a Marvell 98CX8410 switch chip. The CPU is the Annapurna Labs (now Amazon) AL52400 quad-core 64-bit Arm processor at 2GHz with 4GB of RAM. MikroTik says that it will be able to run things like OSPF/ BGP out-of-the-box and that its team is working on more L3 hardware offloads.

MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Open Video
MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Open Video

In the rear we see the company’s replaceable fans, and then redundant power supplies. Max power is listed at 123W without attachments and 183W maximum.

MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Initial Performance
MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Initial Performance

We also found the initial performance numbers on the company’s website. The Layer 1 3.4Tbps capacity number tells us that we have 16 ports of 100GbE and 4 ports of 25GbE, meaning it is unlikely that the 10Gbase-T ports are on the data path. Those are likely sitting off the Annapurna Labs Arm CPU instead. Still, until we get a block diagram and the system, we will just make a guess.

Final Words

Aside from higher-end features, the MikroTik CRS520-4XS-16XQ-RM will be a higher-priced switch at $2795. At that price range, it is going to offer something very unique. A new switch with a management web GUI for the price of a used Mellanox SN2100 16-port 100GbE switch with a bit less connectivity.

Update 2024-07-04: As noted by Jase M in the comments, MikroTik seems to have changed the MSRP on this switch which is now listed at $2195.

Here is a fun story on why this is going live today instead of the NVIDIA Grace Hopper system review we were planning (most likely, that will be after the July 4 holiday now.) This morning, Patrick sent me a screenshot since he was awake feeding the newborn when he saw a video from MikroTik announcing the switch, and something caught his eye.

MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Video Comment On YouTube 2
MikroTik CRS520 4XS 16XQ RM Video Comment On YouTube 2

That comment was the highlighted one on the video. Nobody does that for the guy writing the reviews. Still, that was funny enough to get this featured on the main site.

11 COMMENTS

  1. There is no public data available on the Marvell Prestera CX8410 to know its exact capabilities.

    I wonder if this is a custom ASIC developed by Marvell for Mikrotik ?

  2. @Andrew:
    The article says it’s using a Marvell 98CX8410, which is from Bobcat3 series and not Prestera. Looks like Supermicro has been using the same chip for their blade chassis switches. I couldn’t find much information since it looks like a OEM part.

  3. 2x 10gbe ports for management seems like an odd choice. I’d love it if those were on the switch chip, they’d be perfect uplink ports to a 24/48 port 1gb switch with 10gb/SFP+ for uplinks

  4. This is CCR2004 chip so it probably also have 4x10G physicals. Thus assigning two of them to redundant OOB management is not that odd.
    Bottomline is that routing chip won’t be able to handle much more than ~4Gbps of raw traffic. Without hardware offloads it is not going to route anything reasonable.

  5. @Kyle Prestera is the overarching name of Marvell’s Enterprise/Datacenter switching portfolio of which Bobcat and Alleycat are members.

    Interesting find that SuperMicro are using it.

  6. @Andrew:
    You’re right, I got confused by Marvell’s marketing materials and overall lack of detailed public spec sheet availability.

  7. Jase – we will update the pricing. We used the MSRP that was on the site at the time we published the article, what MikroTik told us, and what we had to pay customs import duties on.

    The good news is that the price went down!

  8. Are we likely to see a video review of this switch?, I’m looking at upgrading my home lan but don’t fancy 70db+ in the loft where all the fibre runs currently go.

  9. I got impatient and bought one, much quieter than I feared even with stock fans (on my CRS510-8XS-2XQ I replaced the fans with Noctua ones). Looking forward to the video still though :)

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