Supermicro was one of the first server manufacturers to produce AMD EPYC 7001 series servers. With the 2nd generation AMD EPYC 7002 series, Supermicro is extending that leadership capability to new form factors. At STH, you already saw the topology of one of the company’s new WIO AMD EPYC 7002 products in our main launch piece. There are a number of innovative designs we previewed and got to see in-person during the launch event as well. The new AMD EPYC 7002 parts are ahead of Intel kicking off the company’s 12th generation products.
AMD First to Supermicro 12th Generation Platforms
The first digit in a Supermicro motherboard SKU is usually for a family name. For AMD, this is H. The second digit set is the generation number. Current Intel Xeon Scalable designs, like the Supermicro X11DPi-N are considered the company’s 11th generation products. For AMD, the newest EPYC 7002 motherboards are the Supermicro H12 series. The 12th generation products we expect to have PCIe Gen4, a feature Intel currently lacks on public SKUs. This article’s cover image is of a Supermicro H12SSW-NT motherboard we are reviewing.
Supermicro WIO H12 Generation Servers
Supermicro has two WIO H12 generation 1U servers at launch. The first is a 4x 3.5″ chassis that can handle the front drive bays being used as NVMe bays as well. The second is a 10x 2.5″ SATA drive bay chassis with two that can be used as NVMe.
One of the key features of the WIO motherboard is its more modern design. If you look at the H12SSW-NT motherboard itself that powers the new systems, it utilizes a PCIe Gen4 riser solutions for the rear I/O and standard PCIe Gen4 M.2 ports for motherboard attached storage.
Beyond that, there is an array of PCIe Gen4 cabled ports that can be used for front panel NVMe or other devices. As PCIe signaling speeds increase, and features like serial attached memory become more common, we expect to see motherboards with many cabled device headers.
Revolutionary Supermicro TwinPro 2U4N 1P Server
Supermicro has something out today that has the potential to be a game-changer. The Supermicro TwinPro 2014TP-HTR is a 2U 4-node server with a twist. While most 2U4N designs, like the company’s BigTwin, are dual-socket, the 2014TP-HTR is a single socket per node design.
With 12x 3.5″ drives in front (3x per node), the 2014TP-HTR has basic capacity storage covered. Additionally, there are four M.2 NVMe SSD slots for up to M.2 22110 (110mm) SSDs. That means one can use PLP data center M.2 read focused drives or even Intel Optane drives like the Intel Optane 905P 380GB M.2 NVMe SSD or Intel Optane DC P4801X Review 100GB M.2 NVMe SSD Log Option for write-heavy designs. Most dual-socket nodes have 1-2 M.2 SSDs at most but removing a socket means there is more capability. Plus, one has two PCIe Gen4 x16 slots for additional NVMe or 100GbE adapters and a SIOM slot for networking.
The Supermicro 2014TP-HTR with a single CPU is able to offer core counts (64) and PCIe expansion that was previously only possible with dual-socket servers lower-cost 2U4N 1P design. For data centers, it means that the solution can offer the same node density as Intel Xeon Scalable platforms but at around half the power consumption and half the sockets. That creates new market opportunities for 2U4N designs to increase node density in lower power density racks.
We think this has the potential to be a huge win in the market because it directly addresses the key value drivers of the AMD EPYC 7002 series.
Supermicro BigTwin AMD EPYC 7002 2P Servers
The Supermicro BigTwin has also been updated to support the second generation AMD EPYC 7002 CPUs. This is a more traditional 2U4N design with dual-socket nodes.
A key benefit here is that by using the AMD EPYC 7002 series, Supermicro can fit up to 512 cores and 1024 threads in a 2U chassis. Using high-end 28 cores, Intel Xeon 8276L CPUs at $16.6K each, we were able to only fit 224 cores and 448 threads into the Xeon based Supermicro BigTwin SYS-2029BZ-HNR we reviewed.
We have a feeling this initial Supermicro AMD EPYC 7002 solution salvo will not be the last in this generation. We expect that Supermicro will release a number of newer solutions to take full advantage of the greater PCIe Gen4 capabilities that the EPYC platform offers. Stay tuned to STH for more coverage.