For gaming enthusiasts, and most definitely for those of the AMD persuasion, the upcoming Zen microarchitecture is seen as a much-needed adrenaline boost for the company. Built on an advanced GlobalFoundries-sourced 14nm FinFET process, AMD is hoping that Zen will be able to go toe-to-toe with the best that Intel has to offer, while offering attractive pricing that the company has always been known for.
AMD is reportedly working on a high-end server variant of Zen, codenamed Naples. Naples would have a total of 32 cores, with a cluster of Zen cores sharing an 8MB pool of L3 cache. Total L3 shared cache is pegged at a stout 64MB and Naples will be capable of executing 64 threads while operating within a 180W power envelope.
It’s been reported that AMD will be able to achieve this 32-core design by placing two 16-core processors on a single die. These two processors will communicate using a high-speed interconnect to alleviate any bottlenecks that could arise in a server environment.
If that isn’t enough to get your juices flowing, Fudzilla has even more details to show. Naples will support eight independent memory channels and up to 128 third-generation PCIe lanes. A 16x10 GbE Ethernet controller is integrated into the chipset and Naples will use an SP3 LGA socket.
The first server-based Zen processor could possibly squeak by for a late 2016 introduction, but odds are that we won’t see widespread availability until 2017. At that time, you should expect Zen server processors in dual-, quad-, 16- and 32-core variants, with TDPs ranging from 35 watts to 180 watts.
This is the second time we've heard about a 32-core Zen processor. Zen is expected to offer 40 percent improvement in instruction per clock (IPC) performance compared to AMD’s current processor architecture, which was introduced back in 2011. Earlier this month, AMD demoed its 8-core, 16-thread Summit Ridge desktop processors and expects to get those parts out to consumers within the next few months.