Intel has been trailing AMD in the workstation ever since the competition launched its Threadripper CPUs but based on the new information we’ve received, it looks like the Blue Team will unveil the next generation of its Xeon Workstation family, Sapphire Rapids-WS, in early 2023.
The Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS Xeon workstation CPUs and accompanying ‘Fishhawk Falls’ W790 platform were unveiled in February, followed by their launch in April
It’s been more than a year since Intel launched a new Xeon Workstation family. The latest group, the Xeon W-3300, is based on the older Ice Lake design and tops out by 38 cores. Meanwhile, AMD is introducing its latest Zen 3 architecture on Threadripper WX ‘Workstation’ parts, supporting all-new features and up to 64 cores. Even in terms of value, AMD Threadripper’s options are simply unmatched by Intel’s workstation offerings.
However, Intel has planned a new platform that will be launched next year. Based on information given to us by a little birdie, we have come to the conclusion that Intel is planning to officially unveil its latest Xeon Workstation family, codenamed Sapphire Rapids-WS, the official announcement should take place somewhere in the seventh week of 2023 (twelfth) February – February 18). If all goes smoothly, we will see a launch and by launch, I mean retail (on the shelf/sales) by April 2023.
- Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS/W790 Unveiled – February (7th week), 2023
- Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS/W790 sales – April 2023
Launching the next-generation Xeon Workstation platform early will give them some time before AMD lands another punch in the form of the fourth-generation Threadripper family, the Ryzen Threadripper 7000 ‘Storm Peak’ with up to 96 Zen 4 cores. It looks like Intel will go the route. A competitive pricing strategy could hit AMD a lot because the red team will go the premium route like the chipmaker did with its consumer Zen 4 lineup.
Meanwhile, some board makers like Supermicro have been readying their own W790 Xeon-WS motherboards for a while now. just yesterday, momomo Listing revealed for X13SWA-TF which is Intel LGA 4677 socket motherboard specially designed for workstation class chipsets and we know that there is no chipset that can use this board at the moment. Retailer Atica.ca has listed the motherboard at $1290 CAD or $960 AU. The motherboard features six PCI Express 4.0 x16 slots, two 10Gb Ethernet ports, and comes in an EATX form factor.
Here’s everything we know about the Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS Xeon Workstation family of CPUs and the W790 platform
Just like the Core family, the Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS Xeon chips will come in different segments starting with Xeon W9, Xeon W7, Xeon W5, and Xeon W3. Each part comes with its own SKUs with different configurations that will be compatible with the “Fishhawk Falls” platform. We can also validate this a lot because we’ve seen an internal roadmap that lists the following:
Starting with Sapphire Rapids, the Intel® Xeon brand will be used for all platforms going forward.
As for the same CPU family, the Intel Xeon W9 lineup will range from 56 and 36 core models, featuring up to 105MB of L3 cache, 350W TDP, and 112 PCIe Gen 5.0. The Xeon W5 family includes 28-, 24- and 20-core models with up to 75MB of L3 cache and 300W TDPs, while the Xeon W5-class chips will have 16 and 12-core SKUs with up to 45MB of L3 cache and 270 watt TDPs.
Only base clock speeds are mentioned for the Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS Xeon cluster with Xeon W9 offerings peaking at 2.2GHz, Xeon W7 cluster peaking at 2.6GHz and Xeon W5 cluster peaking at 3.2GHz. Every CPU will come with a variety of boost algorithms for all single and multiple cores. There are at least nine SKUs listed and they will be running on the Fishhawk Falls platform.
You may remember that the Xeon W9-3495 and Xeon W5-3433 have already been leaked here and here.
The Fishhawk Falls platform will become a robust, next-generation ecosystem that includes 8 DDR5-4400 (1DPC) / DDR5-4800 (2DPC) channels and up to 112 PCIe Gen 5.0 lanes. These will come with ECC support and up to 4TB of DDR5 memory possible (theoretically). There’s also a good chance we’ll see dual-socket SPR Expert Workstation motherboards that would increase the core count per platform to 112 cores, double the amount found in AMD’s flagship Threadripper, the 5995WX (64 Zen 3 cores). To sum things up:
- Intel ‘Expert’ Sapphire Rapids HEDT CPUs
- Up to 56 cores / 112 threads
- LGA 4677 socket support (dual socket motherboards)
- 112 PCIe Gen 5.0 Lanes
- 8-channel DDR5 memory (up to 4TB)
Another family to launch on the Fishhawk Falls platform (W790 chipset) will be the Xeon-MS or the mainstream variant under the branding of the Xeon W-2400 series. So far, we only know what top-tier features these chips have to offer but we’ll likely hear about them in the coming months.
Specifications for the Intel Sapphire Rapids-WS Xeon Workstation CPU lineup:
|CPU name||General engineering||process node||cores/threads||base clock||L3 cache||TDP|
|Xeon W9-3495X||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||56/112||1.9 GHz||105 MB||350 watts|
|Xeon W9-3475X||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||36/72||2.2 GHz||82.5 m||300 watts|
|Xeon W7-3465X||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||28/56||2.5 GHz||75.0 MB||300 watts|
|Xeon W7-3455||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||24/48||2.5 GHz||67.5 m||270 watts|
|Xeon W7-3445||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||20/40||2.6 GHz||52.5 m||270 watts|
|Xeon W5-3435X||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||16/32||3.1 GHz||45.0 MB||270 watts|
|Xeon W5-3433||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||16/32||2.0 GHz||45.0 MB||220 watts|
|Xeon W5-3425||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||12/24||3.2 GHz||30.0 MB||270 watts|
|Xeon W5-3423||Golden Cove||10 nm ESF “Intel 7”||12/24||2.1 GHz||30.0 MB||220 watts|