Last week, AMD launched the second generation of its Epyc server processor, the Epyc 7002 series a.k.a. “Rome,” and it’s a far cry from the days when it held a release party for the Opteron and no one showed up. These days, AMD has a whole lot of friends.
Of course, it helps to deliver a part people want, and it looks like the Epyc 7002 is all that. It builds considerably upon the first generation, code-named “Naples,” delivered two years ago. One chip packs up to 64 cores and two threads per core, double the max of 32 cores in Naples. It has eight memory channels and up to 128 lanes of PCI Express Gen 4.
The Epyc 7002 achieves this massive core count through “chiplets,” eight small chips in the CPU die with eight cores each and connected by a high-speed interconnect. A single monolithic 64-core die is impractical from a manufacturing standpoint. There is so much more that can go wrong with 64 cores than 16. Plus, AMD is manufacturing this on a 7nm process (Intel is just getting to 10nm), so it has that added challenge.