The Armari Magnetar X64T Workstation OC Review: 128 Threads at 4.0 GHz, Sustained!by Dr. Ian Cutress on September 9, 2020 12:00 PM EST
The best place to start for performance is to confirm that this system does get the best SPECworkstation 3 score ever. For users who have never heard of SPECworkstation, it comes from the same people that have the SPEC benchmark that we often use on new processors. The workstation element comes in because this set of benchmarks are designed to test a number of common workstation workloads, such as 3D rendering and animation, molecular modeling and dynamics, medical, oil and gas, construction and architecture, financial services, general operations, and GPU compute. This benchmark combine 30 workloads and ~140 tests into a single package, and results are given as a multiple of a performance compared to a ‘reference’ machine using an Intel Quad-core Skylake processor running a W3100 AMD GPU. This means that this quad-core Intel system gets a value of ‘1’.
|SPECworkstation 3 Test Systems|
|Fujistu Celsius R970||2 x Xeon 8276||RTX 8000||DDR4-2933||PCIe 3.0||$30000+|
|Armari Magnetar X64T||TR3 3990X||RTX 6000||DDR4-3200||PCIe 4.0||~$14200|
|TR3 3990X 'Stock'||TR3 3990X||2080 super||DDR4-3200||SATA||-|
|W-3175X 'Stock'||Xeon W-3175X||2080 Ti||DDR4-2933||SATA||-|
The current system at the top of the official SPECworkstation 3 standings is a Fujitsu Celsius R970 workstation (D3488-A2). This is the system that Armari has beaten with the X64T. The Fujitsu uses two Intel Xeon Platinum 8276 processors (28-core each, total 56-core) paired with an NVIDIA Quadro RTX 8000 and 384 GB of DDR4-2933. This system, going on list prices for just these components, already comes to $24538. Add in the rest, and some overhead, and this is easily $30000+. By comparison, Armari’s Magnetar X64T workstation is only ~$14200.
The results are as follows. Here we are comparing the Fujitsu official results to Armari’s official results. We also have included our results with the same system (technically classified as ‘estimated results’ because these haven’t been formally submitted to the results database), and a W-3175X system with an RTX 2080 Ti and PCIe 3.0 SSD.
|SPECworkstation 3 Results|
|Media and Entertainment||4.72||7.04||6.84||4.79||3.69|
*As submitted to SPEC
Within each of these segments, 7-20 sub-tests are performed covering CPU, GPU, and Storage workloads. Our results were a little lower than Armari's, however that can be down to tuning, ambient temperatures, and repeated runs. Our run was within 3%.
Overall, the Magnetar X64T results beat the old Fujitsu results by 37%:
- CPU: Armari wins by +46%
- GPU: Armari wins by +12%
- Storage: Armari wins by +58%
Now, users might wonder how the Armari wins in the GPU tests, given that it has an RTX 6000 compared to the RTX 8000 in the Fujitsu. This is namely down to processor performance – the Fujitsu system processors have a base frequency of 2200 MHz, compared to the Magnetar X64T which can run all processors at 3925 MHz. Even if the Fujitsu was using the CPU in single core mode, and hitting its max turbo of 4000 MHz, the Armari would be using the better IPC of the Zen 2 core against Intel’s Skylake core.
Now each of the above tests are combined scores from sub-tests.
The Intel-based Fujitsu system does have some specific wins in individual tests, such as Maya Storage (+15%), NAMD Storage (+12%) and 7-zip CPU (+75%), however these mostly apply due to the increased memory capacity of the Intel machine.
The AMD-based Armari system has 40 other wins, including Blender CPU (+62%), handbrake CPU (+86%), CFD CPU (+108%), NAMD CPU (+164%), Seismic Data Processing (+230%), LAAMPS storage (+88%), and Creo GPU (+55%).
Full data for the Armari and the Fujitsu systems can be found at these links: