Samsung is gearing up for PCIe Gen5 era systems and CXL with a CXL memory module. There are two big announcements in the latest release. The first is the new module, and the second is how it is made.
Samsung Launches 512GB CXL Memory Module
The newest Samsung CXL module is different from the first version. One will notice the difference between the new version and the older one. Samsung has announced a 512GB capacity, matching the 512GB that was announced as a DDR5 module for AMD EPYC Genoa and Intel Sapphire Rapids generation, along with next gen Arm systems.
The new Samsung 512GB CXL memory module uses an ASIC design to do the CXL interface. The previously shown CXL module utilized a FPGA. For volume commercialization, the CXL ASIC is the way Samsung and the industry needs to go so this is a big deal.
One other fun bit is that the new CXL memory module is a EDSFF (E3.S) form factor. That form factor is going to be more popular in next-generation enterprise servers. We covered this in E1 and E3 EDSFF to Take Over from M.2 and 2.5 in SSDs. We also have a video of that here:
E3.S we are seeing have a lot of traction among traditional enterprise OEMs that are looking to transition customers from legacy 2.5″ form factors to new EDSFF drives.
We are still some time away from pricing, availability, and servers to put these new modules in. Still, having CXL take off will require devices to be ready and Samsung is getting ahead of its competition with the new CXL memory modules. Transitioning to an ASIC DRAM to CXL controller will help the marketability of these modules and will allow for higher capacities of memory in systems combined with the company’s 512GB DDR5 DIMMs.