IBM z Processors Climb to 5.5 GHz

The core of IBM's venerable mainframe architecture, the z196 chip, is currently shipping as a 5.2 GHz quad-core processor. The next product generation will apparently climb to 5.5 GHz, according to a report published earlier this month by the Wall Street Journal.

There was no clock speed information on the next Power chip, currently called Power7+. Power7 runs at up to 4.14 GHz today and IBM says that the next generation will be 10 to 20 percent faster and it is more than likely that a slight upward adjustment of the clock speed will arrive as well.

IBM's zEnterprise servers have a starting configuration price point of about $75,000 for the z114 (up to 14 processors at 3.8 GHz) and scale into the hundreds of thousands of dollars for z196 systems with 24 processors/96 cores. A single 5.2 GHz quad-core z196 processor, called central processing complex (CPC) is rated at a power consumption of about 300 watts.

In comparison, a 4.14 GHz Power7 chip is rated at 190 watts thermal design power.


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  • back_by_demand
    Up to 20% more speed for only 50% more wattage, OMG!!!
    Contribute to global warming much? I though performance per watt was supposed to go up not down
  • nevertell
    Not X86, so don't really jump to conclusions about the performance. Nor can you natively run Crysis...
  • ashinms
    Crytech needs to get to porting Crysis, NOW!!!!