[Beowulf] Clusters just got more important - AMD's roadmap

Douglas Eadline deadline at eadline.org
Wed Feb 8 06:06:31 PST 2012

>> > GPU line will continue
>> > also inside cpu's integrated. Total monopoly for intel for
>> > applications needing CPU's as it seems.
>> you seem to have missed AMD's main point, which HSA: the concept of
>> pushing x86 and GPU together to enable something higher-performing.
>> it's not a crazy idea, though pretty ambitious.
> The APU concept has a few interesting points but certainly also a few
> major
> problems (when comparing it to a cpu + stand alone gpu setup):
>  * Memory bandwidth to all those FPUs

I thought that was part of the issue, removing the PCI bus from the
CPU/GPU connection. Of course, the APU has a lower memory bandwidth
than the pure GPU, but in theory now the PCI bottleneck is gone.

>  * Power (CPUs in servers today max out around 120W with GPUs at >250W)

I see this as more of a smearing out of the GPU (SIMD unit).
Instead of one big GPU sitting on the PCI bus shared by 2-4 sockets,
now each socket has it's own GPU on the same memory bus.
Unless, I'm not following the APU design correctly.

> Either way we're in for an interesting future (as usual) :-)


> /Peter
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