Intel’s highest-performing Data Center GPU Max compute GPUs, codenamed Ponte Vecchio, will come in the form of OAM modules aimed at blade machines for supercomputing. The company is also prepping humble Data Center GPU Max add-on cards that can go into mainstream servers and workstations. Those cards will follow the latest fashion and come equipped with the 12VHPWR power connector.
Intel’s Data Center GPU Max 1100 employs a cut-down single-stack version of Intel’s Ponte Vecchio processor that features 56 Xe-HPC compute cores featuring 448 512-bit vector engines, 448 4096-bit matrix engines, 56 ray tracing cores, and 48GB of HBM2E memory. The unit consumes up to 300W of power. As it turns out, the graphics card relies on an auxiliary PCIe 5.0 power connector, according to an Intel video.
Nvidia was the first company to use the 12VHPWR power connector on a consumer graphics card, the GeForce RTX 4090. Unfortunately, for now, 12VHPWR connectors have a nasty reputation among enthusiasts. There have been 20 user reports of the 16-pin power adapter melting and three cases of the native 16-pin power connector suffering the same meltdowns. Andreas Schilling from HardwareLuxx.de jokingly tweeted, “Let’s hope those datacenter experts know better how to insert that 12VHPWR adapter correctly.” There has been a couple of theories from experts in the field, but nothing conclusive as we’re still waiting for the results of Nvidia’s investigation.
It is unclear why Intel used a 12VHPWR power connector for its 300W card. Still, it is possible that the company decided to adopt a PCIe Gen5 solution for its part that will be used primarily with Intel Xeon Sapphire Rapids servers designed around the new standard.
Intel's add-in Data Center GPU Max 1100 board is designed both for mainstream servers and for workstations used by individuals who need very high AI (i.e., INT8, BF16, FP16, etc.) and HPC (i.e., FP64) performance for artificial intelligence/deep learning and various compute-intensive and simulation workloads. Using Xe-Link interconnects, the card can work as a single board, in pairs, or in 4-way configurations. Once four such accelerators are installed into a PC, they will draw 1,200W, which is by any means a lot. But with four potentially hazardous power connectors, such a system could be called unsafe.
Currently, only Nvidia's GeForce RTX 4090 and GeForce RTX 4080 (due to be released on November 16) use the 12VHPWR power connectors. Both AMD's Radeon RX 7900-series and Intel's Arc Alchemist graphics cards use standard eight-pin PCIe auxiliary power connectors.
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Anton Shilov is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Over the past couple of decades, he has covered everything from CPUs and GPUs to supercomputers and from modern process technologies and latest fab tools to high-tech industry trends.
I love the serious, no-nonsense designs of datacenter / HPC / professional-grade GPUs, they really look like serious piece of kits. No extra garnish or unnecessary plastic parts.Reply
Yeah... and no fans too!!Exploding PSU said:I love the serious, no-nonsense designs of datacenter / HPC / professional-grade GPUs, they really look like serious piece of kits. No extra garnish or unnecessary plastic parts.
It is unclear why Intel used a 12VHPWR power connector for its 300W card.It is the CEM 5.0 and ATX 3.0 connector for future GPUs and other devices requiring more than what slot power can deliver. Unless the 4090 saga ends with a recall, it will become the standard connector for anything over 70W some number of years from now. Datacenter simply has the benefit of "backwards compatibility" not mattering much since most new servers ship with all-new everything.
A silent GPU!GustavoVanni said:Yeah... and no fans too!!
(At least so long as you don't count the 2U chassis' 8000+RPM blowiematrons between the front drive bays and the motherboard.)
Currently, only Nvidia's GeForce RTX 4090 and GeForce RTX 4080 (due to be released on November 16) use the 12VHPWR power connectorsAnd the 3090Ti, which has been shipping with them for months.
Not to mention the rest of the RTX 3K FE cards, whose 12 pin connector is essentially identical to the 12VHPWR connector (just missing the sense pins).edzieba said:And the 3090Ti, which has been shipping with them for months.
My Mom used to tell me: "Just because everyone else is jumping off a cliff doesn't mean that you should too."Reply
Intel were the ones that pushed PCI-SIG for this in the first place ..... Nvidia was simply the first to adopt it but THEY DID NOT DESIGN ITAdmin said:Intel's Ponte Vecchio GPUs adopt the 12VHPWR PCIe 5.0 power connector.
Intel Data Center Max GPU Embraces 16-pin Power Connector : Read more