The Epic Gains Made In 5 Years For AMD EPYC 7601 Naples vs. Newest 4th Gen EPYC Genoa

Written by Michael Larabel in Processors on 21 November 2022. Page 1 of 8. 7 Comments

The AMD EPYC 4th Gen "Genoa" processor performance has been outright phenomenal. These new AMD server processors have shown stunnning performance with up to 96 cores per socket and beyond the increased core count is now up to 12 channels of DDR5-4800 memory and most significantly in the HPC space is the introduction of AVX-512 support with Zen 4. Even the 32-core high frequency Genoa performance has been dominating against Intel's current Xeon Scalable competition. While AMD EPYC Genoa brings very impressive gains generation-over-generation and against the current Xeon Ice Lake CPUs, curiosity got the best of me for seeing how the new AMD EPYC CPUs compare to AMD's original EPYC 1st Gen "Naples" flagship - the EPYC 7601 2P. Here are Genoa benchmarks showing how far the AMD server/HPC CPU performance has evolved over the past five years since Naples.

For the launch-day review earlier this month due to time constraints the testing was focused on the generational performance difference and against Intel's current Xeon Scalable competition. But with seeing the massive gains there thanks to the up to 96 cores / AVX-512 / twelve channel DDR5 memory and other Zen 4 architectural improvements, curiosity got the best of me for seeing how far AMD server performance has increased since the original EPYC launch with the 7001 series "Naples" processors.

The AMD EPYC 7601 as the Naples flagship sported 32 cores / 64 threads using Zen 1, a base clock of 2.2GHz, maximum boost clock of 3.2GHz, 64MB of L3 cache, and a 180 Watt TDP.

Now with the 4th Gen EPYC "Genoa" processors, the flagship model is the EPYC 9654 with 96 cores / 192 threads using Zen 4, a base clock of 2.4GHz, maximum boost clock of 3.7GHz, a maximum all-core boost speed of 3.55GHz, 384MB of L3 cache, and a 360 Watt TDP. Or if dropping down to a 32-core part to match the core/thread count of the EPYC 7601, with the EPYC 9374F it means a base clock of 3.84GHz, all-core boost of 4.1GHz, and a maximum boost clock of 4.3GHz, and 256MB of L3 cache but with a 320 Watt TDP. The base clock of the EPYC 9374F exceeds the maximum boost clock of the EPYC 7601 20% or a 75% difference for base clocks while having 4x the L3 cache. The maximum boost clock of the EPYC 9374F is 34% higher than the maximum boost clock of that Naples flagship.

For the EPYC 7601 2P benchmarking I was using a Dell PowerEdge R7425 that was previously kindly provided by AMD. The Dell PowerEdge R7425 with EPYC 7601 2P was equipped with 16 x 32GB DDR4-2666 memory and Intel Optane 280GB NVMe SSD storage. All of the Genoa testing was done with the AMD Titanite reference platform kindly provided by AMD along with the CPU review samples. That was running with its 24 x 64GB DDR5-4600 memory, so both servers were running for their optimal rated memory channel/speed configuration.

The Genoa benchmark results are the same as what was featured in the EPYC 9374F/9554/9654 reviews this month while now the EPYC 7601 2P testing has completed. The configurations were:

- AMD EPYC 7601 2P
- AMD EPYC 9374F
- AMD EPYC 9374F 2P [Same core/thread count for the Naples comparison]
- AMD EPYC 9554 [Same core/thread count as the EPYC 7601 2P albeit as 1P]
- AMD EPYC 9554 2P
- AMD EPYC 9654 [The current flagship Genoa SKU]
- AMD EPYC 9654 2P

All of the CPU results were in their default performance determinism mode. As shown in the earlier articles, Genoa does benefit greatly from the "power" determinism mode too and those numbers can be found in the earlier articles if interested.

Obviously the goal was to also look at the EPYC 7601 "Naples" power consumption / performance-per-Watt too, but sadly that effort was thwarted. At least with the Dell PowerEdge platform used, the Linux RAPL power monitoring interface was often reporting inaccurate power readings -- upwards of 1kW power consumption for the EPYC 7601 2P CPUs... Due to the unreliable power readings for the CPU power consumption on Naples, there are sadly no power metrics in today's article.

As usual for our bleeding-edge Linux focus, the benchmarks were carried out using Ubuntu 22.10 with upgrading to the Linux 6.0 kernel for both the Genoa and Naples platforms. Thus a fresh look at how the five year old hardware is doing with the very latest open-source/Linux software.


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