With a maximum of eight cores, 256-bit AVX instructions, quad-channel memory and integrated PCI-Express 3.0 I/O connections, Intel has significantly improved its dual-socket server platform. Whether workloads benefit more from pure processing power, fast memory communication or faster I/O, the new Sandy Bridge architecture has clear advantages in all areas compared to Intel's previous server platform.
This is reflected by the test results. For example, with HPC applications we saw performance gains of a couple dozen percent. The database benchmark showed an improvement of 36 percent compared to the previous generation. The performance-per-watt has also increased according to the results, both in tests focusing on pure CPU power and the database benchmarks that take advantage more of memory bandwidth.