AMD EPYC 7773X "Milan-X" Benchmarks Show Very Strong HPC Performance Upgrade

Written by Michael Larabel in Processors on 21 March 2022 at 09:00 AM EDT. Page 1 of 9. 39 Comments.

While Milan-X was announced back in November, today is the day of the Milan-X embargo lift for reviewing these new processors and sharing more about these high-end server processors focused on delivering even greater performance for high performance computing (HPC) workloads. In this review is a look at the performance of the AMD EPYC 7773X series against other AMD EPYC parts and the Intel Xeon Scalable competition under Linux.

The principal selling point and intention with the AMD Milan-X processors is for introducing the AMD 3D V-Cache for offering a very large on-die cache by way of 3D die stacking, the first to market.

AMD Milan-X processors provide a 768MB L3 cache per CPU, or 1.5GB combined cache for a dual socket server. The Milan-X processors otherwise are the same Zen 3 cores as enjoyed currently by the EPYC 7003 series and the specs on their new processors are similar to that of the non-X SKUs. With Milan-X still being Milan but with a large cache, Socket SP3 compatibility is maintained and all existing platforms should work with the new processors pending they have an updated BIOS providing the Milan-X support.

The Milan-X family launching today is the EPYC 7373X, 7473X, 7573X, and 7773X. All of these processors are similar to their non-X SKUs with regard to the core/thread count and clock frequencies. All of these CPUs have a 768MB L3 cache and still support DDR4-3200 memory.

Surprising me the most with the AMD Milan-X launch is the pricing: it's actually lower than what I was initially anticipating for its somewhat niche target. The new Milan-X parts are ~10% higher than their similar Milan siblings. The flagship EPYC 7773X has 1KU unit pricing of $8,800 USD. It will be interesting to see how availability is on these new parts and how the pricing holds, but at least with the pricing announced it's not that much more for having the massive cache.

The AMD 3D V-Cache appears to the OS as part of the L3 cache and behaves without any underlying software changes. Existing supported Linux enterprise distributions compatible with Milan will continue working fine with Milan-X.

In the case of the AMD EPYC 7773X that is the focus of today's review, it has a 2.2GHz base frequency with a 3.5GHz boost frequency for this 64 core / 128 thread SKU. The EPYC 7763 meanwhile has a 2.45GHz base frequency with the same 3.5GHz boost frequency. Both CPUs have a 280 Watt TDP, eight channels of DDR4-3200 memory, 128 PCI Express 4.0 lanes, and other common Zen 3 features. The slightly lower base clock frequency may slightly impair the EPYC 7773X performance for workloads not able to take advantage of the huge cache, but any downside should be minimal based on our testing.

AMD really engineered these new AMD EPYC 7003X processors with technical computing workloads in mind such as CFD, structural analysis, finite element analysis, EDA, and other similar workloads. I've been running hundreds of benchmarks with Milan-X in looking at all the different areas showing promising performance out of the huge 3D V-Cache. Let's get on and looking at some performance benchmarks for the AMD EPYC 7773X in both 1P and 2P configurations. Thanks to AMD for providing the EPYC review samples for Phoronix review.

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