SYSTEM BUILDER Boston has shown off a workstation based on Intel's Xeon E5 chip, giving us an idea of what sort of configuration the chip will appear in.
Intel is set to launch the Xeon E5 processor tomorrow, however details of Xeon E5 systems are starting to appear. One such machine is Boston's Venom 2000-7T, which has two Xeon E5-2670 processors running at 2.6GHz.
Last week The INQUIRER benchmarked the Venom 2000-7T to get a feel for how Intel's delayed Sandy Bridge E chips perform. Our full benchmarks will be posted tomorrow but in the meantime here is a subset of what you can expect.
2x Intel Xeon E5-2670 processors
Supermicro X9DAI motherboard
32GB Supermicro 4GB DDR3-1600 4 ECC Registered memory
Lian Li PC-90B case
865W Supermicro PWS-865-PQ power supply
128GB Crucial M4 SSD
1TB Hitachi HDS721010CLA332 hard drive
PNY Quadro 4000 graphics card
Windows 7 64-bit Professional operating system
Idle power consumption from the plug is 140W. At boot-up power draw spiked to 280W while during Sandra cryptographic tests it was 372W.
Noise levels were not out of the ordinary for a dual-processor Xeon workstation, are only noticable at boot-up when the fans spin at 100 per cent.
PCMark Vantage score: 3209
Cinebench CPU: 22.35 points
Cinebench OpenGL: 58.27 frames per second
Sequential read: 501.6 MB/sec
Sequential write: 203.8 MB/sec
Random read: 392.4 MB/sec
Random write: 204.3 MB/sec
4K read: 24.92 MB/sec
4K write: 63.13 MB/sec
For Intel the biggest selling point of its Xeon E5 chip is multi-chip configurations, with memory configurations of greater than 32GB. Even Boston admitted that a single chip Xeon E5 setup is not particularly attractive when compared to a Core i7-3960X, even though it has two more cores.
Our full comparison against a single processor Intel Core i7-3960 will be posted tomorrow. µ