Intel Xeon 6766E/6780E Sierra Forest vs. Ampere Altra Performance & Power Efficiency

Written by Michael Larabel in Processors on 5 June 2024 at 11:22 AM EDT. Page 5 of 6. 10 Comments.
srsRAN Project benchmark with settings of Test: PDSCH Processor Benchmark, Throughput Total. Xeon 6780E was the fastest.
srsRAN Project benchmark with settings of Test: PDSCH Processor Benchmark, Throughput Total. Xeon 6780E was the fastest.
srsRAN Project benchmark with settings of Test: PDSCH Processor Benchmark, Throughput Total. Xeon 6780E was the fastest.

With the srsRAN open-source 5G RAN software, the Xeon 6780E was the fastest for raw performance and the Xeon 6766E/6780E were delivering great power efficiency comparable to the AMD EPYC Siena CPUs. The Ampere Altra Max performed poorly for this telco software in raw performance and the power efficiency was comparable to 5th Gen Intel Xeon processors.

PyTorch benchmark with settings of Device: CPU, Batch Size: 512, Model: ResNet-50. Xeon Platinum 8592+ was the fastest.
PyTorch benchmark with settings of Device: CPU, Batch Size: 512, Model: ResNet-50. Xeon Platinum 8592+ was the fastest.
PyTorch benchmark with settings of Device: CPU, Batch Size: 512, Model: ResNet-50. Xeon Platinum 8592+ was the fastest.

The modern Intel Xeon P-core processors are best suited for PyTorch thanks to Advanced Matrix Extensions (AMX) and AVX-512. But since Ampere Computing has promoted their platforms for CPU-based AI inference, here are some benchmarks. The Xeon 6766E/6780E were faster for ResNet-50 than the Ampere Altra Max while that ARMv8 processor saw the worst performance-per-Watt of the tested CPUs. Even though the Intel Xeon 6766E/6780E lack AMX and AVX-512, their power efficiency was comparable to the 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors.

OpenVINO benchmark with settings of Model: Machine Translation EN To DE FP16, Device: CPU. EPYC 9754 was the fastest.
OpenVINO benchmark with settings of Model: Handwritten English Recognition FP16-INT8, Device: CPU. EPYC 9754 was the fastest.

While Intel's OpenVINO supports AArch64, at least out-of-the-box on Ubuntu 24.04 it's not nearly as perform as Intel/AMD x86_64 processors. The Intel Xeon P-core processors are especially well suited here with OpenVINO able to leverage AMX and AVX-512.


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