Besides Xeon processors that are officially mentioned on its website and price list, Intel has tens of ‘off roadmap’ server CPUs only available to select customers that have special requests. Recently journalists from ComputerBase discovered that Intel has Xeon Platinum 8284, the company’s fastest 28-core chip for multi-socket servers. The CPU runs 300 MHz faster than the ‘official’ Xeon Platinum 8280, but costs considerably more.

Intel’s Xeon Platinum 8284 packs 28 cores with Hyper-Threading that run at 3.0-4.0 GHz, feature a 38.5 MB cache, a six-channel memory controller supporting up to 1 TB of DDR4-2933 with ECC, 48 PCIe 3.0 lanes, and other capabilities found in codenamed Cascade Lake CPUs. Since the chip runs at 300 MHz higher base frequency when compared to the Xeon Platinum 8280, it has a 240 W TDP, up from 205 W. Meanwhile, Tcase of the CPU (the maximum allowed temperature on the IHS of the processor) was reduced to 65°C (down from 84°C), so the CPU requires a very sophisticated cooling system that can take away 240 W at the aforementioned temperature.

Being Intel’s fastest 28-core CPU for multi-socket servers, the Xeon Platinum 8284 processor costs $15,460 (recommended customer price for 1k unit order, RCP), whereas the Xeon Platinum 8280 that runs at a 300 MHz lower frequency, costs $10,009 for 1ku.

Intel Second Generation Xeon Scalable Family
(Cascade Lake)
  Cores Base
Freq
Turbo
Freq
L3
Cache
TDP
(W)
Optane Price
(1ku)
Xeon Platinum 8200
8284   28 3.0 4.0 38.50 240 Yes $15460
8280 L 28 2.7 4.0 38.50 205 Yes $17906
8280 M 28 2.7 4.0 38.50 205 Yes $13012
8280   28 2.7 4.0 38.50 205 Yes $10009
8276 L 28 2.2 4.0 38.50 165 Yes $16616
8276 M 28 2.2 4.0 28.50 165 Yes $11722
8276   28 2.2 4.0 38.50 165 Yes $8719
8270   26 2.7 4.0 25.75 205 Yes $7405
8268   24 2.9 3.9 35.75 205 Yes $6302
8260 L 24 2.4 3.9 25.75 165 Yes $12599
8260 M 24 2.4 3.9 25.75 165 Yes $7705
8260   24 2.4 3.9 25.75 165 Yes $4702
8260 Y 24 2.4 3.9 35.75 165 Yes $5320
8256   4 3.8 3.9 16.50 105 Yes $7007
8253 L 16 2.2 3.0 35.75 165 Yes ?
8253 M 16 2.2 3.0 35.75 165 Yes ?
8253   16 2.2 3.0 35.75 165 Yes $3115

The Xeon Platinum 8284 is not mentioned in Intel’s pricelist, and not under Cascade Lake on Intel's ARK database, but it is searchable if you know the exact number. This typically means that the CPU is only available to select customers or even a customer. That said, it is possible that apart from higher clocks, this 'semi-custom' off-roadmap processor may come with features that go beyond that and this might explain the huge price difference when compared to the model 8280.

Related Reading

Source: Intel’s ARK (via ComputerBase)

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  • Elstar - Tuesday, July 23, 2019 - link

    Or some of both. Unlike Skylake, Intel seems to be including 26 cores worth of L3 on some 24-core Cascade Lake chips, which implies that yields are up (and that Intel would rather have a bigger performance gap between their 24- and 28-core parts). Reply
  • bobhumplick - Thursday, July 18, 2019 - link

    all those skus arent for us. they are for oem's. intel sells so many more chips to people like dell and hp than to us that we are basically insignifcant. thats why all the sales numbers with amd beating intel are not nearly as damning for intel as people think...yet.

    but anyway if oems can save 5 dollars per chip that can add up to millions. so more skus allows oems to tune their costs to their liking. you can pretty much overlook them. they arent meant for us
    Reply
  • yeeeeman - Thursday, July 18, 2019 - link

    The sooner AMD gets out Rome with 64 cores the better. Reply
  • duploxxx - Friday, July 19, 2019 - link

    true for competition and that is already showing.

    without rome even available the recent intel refresh / intel already dropped it cpu pricing with 30%.(for the 1000s unit price)

    but still horrible what you have to pay for those high core count sku. knowing spectre, melt and zombie i wonder if those high end buyers ever think twice and revise there portfolio/buying behavior
    Reply
  • HStewart - Thursday, July 18, 2019 - link

    I think a big difference with these CPU's is that they are not just Dual CPU setups but 4 or even 8 CPU motherboard options. I believe this is why they are call Xeon Scalable.

    Plus Xeons have advance instruction sets like AVX 512 that not found in other systems and also chipsets are have better IO.

    Yes it old but my Dual Xeon 5160 was faster than most machines until the i7's came out.
    Reply
  • SarahKerrigan - Thursday, July 18, 2019 - link

    They do indeed support 4s and 8s configurations - but 4s+ x86 is very much a niche market. Reply
  • HStewart - Friday, July 19, 2019 - link

    Keep in mind 4 16core cpu';s is same amount of cores as 2 32core cpus.
    There is also likely IO difference with multiple cpus and likely it because of less core per cpu, can be run at faster speed.
    Reply
  • Korguz - Friday, July 19, 2019 - link

    yes.. but if some one has a 4s board with 4 16 core cpus, and they upgrade those to 32 core.. they have twice the cores.. in the same space. Reply
  • FreckledTrout - Thursday, July 18, 2019 - link

    All of that is true but Intel does downclock for AVX512. It will be interesting to see these chips go against EPYC. Reply
  • HStewart - Friday, July 19, 2019 - link

    But the speed difference when using AVX512 vs normal AVX2 is significant and more than clock speed could ever make the difference.

    And if you don't have AVX512 based application, should be able to disable it and run at full speed.

    AVX 512 is not in mainstream computers until Sunny Cove, but it would be bad thing if AVX 512 not active slows things down. This part could be wise it not main stream yet.
    Reply

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