SeaMicro today announced a new low power server which contains 256 of Intel’s Atom N570 dual core processors. The new SM10000-64 has 512 Atom processing cores which operate at 1.66ghz, which when combined deliver 850GHZ of processing power.
Intel’s low power Atom processors are generally used in netbooks and low powered media centers but these processors are considered to be very power efficient when compared to traditional server processors for specific tasks, such as Web transactions, which can often contain small amounts of data which can be processed quickly.
This new server design idea is targeted to data centers which deal with a large volume of internet transactions, such as social networking, email and search, according to SeaMicro CEO Andrew Feldman. A group of Atom cores in specific situations could provide better performance per watt than Intel’s Xeon and AMD’s Opteron processors which consume more power and are created for more intensive database or math applications.
Feldman said “It’s moving from big hardware and software to lots of little hardware and software, we are building systems that are designed to optimize compute-per-watt.”
This shift to low power chips is becoming more prominent as many companies look to cut their energy bills. Dell already offer low power x86 servers for specific demands and Microsoft have apparently asked Intel to develop a 16 core Atom chip for servers. AMD are also evaluating their Fusion chip designs for server environments. British processor company ARM are also aiming to target the server sector with future designs with Marvell already announcing a server chip based on ARM architecture. Nvidia have also joined the surge with their Project Denver code name which is an ARM based CPU designed for PC’s and servers.
SeaMicro’s move to the faster dual core N570 has reduced the number of chips in the server which has also reduced power consumption. The server when compared to their last release demands 15 to 17 percent less power and it now also supports 64 bit operating systems which improves the addressable memory support.
Feldman said “The N570 is the highest performance, low power processor bar none.” The pricing will start at $148,000 and is now available in the US which international options available. It can hold up to 1TB of DDR3 memory and up to 64 hard drives. It is a 10 rack tall unit.
KitGuru says: The start of high performance multi core ATOM server systems.