Phew – that took a while. And got me some heartburn ….. But here we are, finally: Asrock Rack has finally confirmed that their 7210 and 7250 based systems reach the performance I had been “expecting” (well: at least in the last two weeks, “hoping for” would have better described it)….
So before I say anything else, let me make the two key points of this article:
- you can get a 4-node 7210 Xeon Phi system from Asrock Rack for order $3k (full system, with four CPUs!)
- Asrock Rack has run some experiments of their own on these systems, and confirm 2800H/s per 7210 CPU, and 3kH per 7250 CPU on those system. Ie. roughly 11kH/s for order $3k (in the 4×7210 system)
When I did my first measurements with 7210s I first used some home-grown system that I had built from parts (to which I literally had to take a steel saw at one point in time!), as well as – indirectly – systems from others that shared their achieved hash rate (to all those that did: Very grateful indeed!). Even back then I realized that I could get 2700-2750H/s on my 7210, but most users only got 2600-ish; and we could never figure out what the problem was. Then I found those 7220s, and got the 2800-2850H/s that I had expected, so everything looked good – until I finally got my first 4×7250 system two weeks ago, on which I still haven’t figured out why I only get 20-30% less performance than one would expect (drives me nuts!).
Note I did get independent confirmation that the 7250s can do 3kH/s – I measured that in my own K1SPE board, and another user confirmed – so I know the CPUs can get that performance …. but at least with this 4-node system I have so far I still haven’t gotten the performance I expected, so eventually started to get worried that maybe those server boards would not ever reach that performance … who knows?
Anyway – those fears are now finally laid to rest, because Asrock Rack has finally confirmed that at least for their system – with some tuning they’ve done to them – they can finally confirm roughly 2800H/s per Phi 7210, and roughly 3kH per Phi 7250 (Yeehaw!). In fact, since I like to share: here’s a little screenshot of my mailbox, showing the relevant part of email that just made my day:
About the Asrock Rack 2U4N Phi Systems
I will actually write a more detailed blog on their exact system later on, but at least for now: The Asrock Rack systems are 2U rackmount servers, with four Phi nodes each (you can chose whether to take 7210 or 7250s) – i.e., four full 7210s, or four full 7250s.
The particularly nice thing regarding the Asrock systems (apart from the fact that they’re now confirmed performant for lukMiner! 🙂 ) is that they come at a very compelling price: only around $3k per 4×7210 node, which is only around $750 for a complete node that can do 2800H/s. (in comparison, a Vega can do order 2000H/s, and costs way more even without adding the cost for the machine to mount it in!).
The reason these machines are so good on price is that Asrock has agreed to strip everything else from those systems that you wouldn’t need for mining: No memory (not required – the above screenshots are from nodes without any DRAM whatsoever), no OPA network cards (you have on-board ethernet, that’s more than enough), etcpp.
Again, I hope I’ll eventually find some more time to write a bit more in detail about the different options (asrock vs exxact, 7210 vs 7250, DRAM vs no DRAM, etc) – but at least for now, the two key take-aways are:
- confirmed 2800H/s (7210) and 3000H/s (7250) on the Asrock Rack systems
- you can get such a system with four CPUs at a pretty good price (order $3k for a 4×7210 system that makes order 4x2800H/s=~11kH/s).
Asrock Rack inquiries: Oh, almost forgot: if anybody that reads this is interested in talking to Asrock Rack to learn more about those systems, please use firstname.lastname@example.org … whoever gets this email knows what this is about, and what you’re looking for.
Until then: Happy mining!
PS: I don’t think I required to do any financial disclaimers a la “…we are long … in stock xyz … ” that financial writers have to do: but just in case (and just in case it’s not obvious): I do have a few of those systems coming myself … obviously… 🙂