Chinese chip designer repacks Intel 5th Gen Xeon Emerald Rapids CPUs for the domestic market — 5th Gen Jintide chips feature China-specific security algorithm tech

5th Gen Jintide CPU
5th Gen Jintide CPU (Image credit: Montage Technology)

Montage Technology, a Chinese IC design company, has unveiled the new 5th Gen Jintide lineup of processors. Based on Intel's latest Emerald Rapids, the new Jintide data center chips offer core counts between 16 and 48 cores.

In 2016, Intel established a strategic partnership with China's Tsinghua University (TU) and Montage Technology Global Holdings, Ltd. to address the specific security needs of its server and data center customers in China. The Xeon processors retain all their vanilla characteristics, but have special silicon-level encryption blocks. There are a couple of built-in chips for monitoring and enhancing hardware security. Jintide processors employ PrC (Pre-check) and DSC (Dynamic Security Check) features to harden the security.

The first generation of Jintide processors debuted in 2019 at Hot Chips 31, and leveraged Intel's Skylake microarchitecture. Therafter, the Jintide platform has marched along with all of Intel's major Xeon releases.

While Intel has a diverse stack of Emerald Rapids processors, the 5th Gen Jintide platform is limited to five specific models. It's uncertain if Montage Technology will release more models down the line. As usual, Intel limited Montage Technology's access to lower-core SKUs. For instance, 4th Gen Xeon Sapphire Rapids scaled up to 60 cores, but 4th Gen Jintide stopped at 48 cores. While the latest Emerald Rapids has pushed up to 64 cores, the Jintide platform again halted at 48 cores.

5th Gen Jintide CPU Specifications

Swipe to scroll horizontally
ProcessorPart NumberCores / ThreadsBase / Boost Clock (GHz)L3 Cache (MB)TDP (W)
C8558PM88JTMC8558P48 / 962.7 / 4.0260350
C6548Y+M88JTMC6548Y+32 / 642.5 / 4.160250
C5520+M88JTMC5520+28 / 562.2 / 4.052.5205
C6542YM88JTMC6542Y24 / 482.9 / 4.160250
C4514YM88JTMC4514Y16 / 322.6 / 3.430150

It's easy pair the equivalent Xeon processors to their Jintide counterparts, since Montage Technology didn't radically rename the chips. The company only added the "C" prefix to the Intel model names. For example, the C8558P, C6548Y+, and C5520+ are the Xeon Platinum 8558P, Xeon Gold 6548Y+, and Xeon Gold 5520+, respectively, whereas the C6542Y and C4514Y are the duplicates of the Xeon Gold 6542Y and Xeon Silver 4514Y, respectively.

While the Jintide processors are locked off from the higher core counts, the data center chips enjoy the rest of Emerald Rapids' features, including eight-channel memory support up to 4TB, DDR5-5600 support, and 80 PCIe 5.0 lanes. The Jintide parts retain 2S support, too, so there's the prospect of having two C8558P in a dual-socket system for up to 96 cores and 192 threads. It's not as exciting as pairing two 64-core chips together, but would still result in serious capabilities.

Montage Technology doesn't reveal the pricing for the 5th Gen Jintide processors. However, if we use Intel's MSRP for the regular models, the Xeon Platinum 8558P sells for $6,759, while the models with fewer cores, such as the Xeon Gold 6548Y+, retail for $3,726. Logically, pricing is irrelevant to a certain point when only a handful of hardware meets the security requirement of the market. Montage Technology could theoretically sell these 5th Gen Jintide chips for twice the cost, and there would still be a demand for them.

Zhiye Liu
RAM Reviewer and News Editor

Zhiye Liu is a Freelance News Writer at Tom’s Hardware US. Although he loves everything that’s hardware, he has a soft spot for CPUs, GPUs, and RAM.

  • mdd1963
    Chicom Emerald Rapids, with special backdoor hacks for Chinese Communist Party intelligence agency? :)
    Reply
  • williamcll
    mdd1963 said:
    Chicom Emerald Rapids, with special backdoor hacks for Chinese Communist Party intelligence agency? :)
    To counter the American Backdoor that is intel management engine.
    Reply
  • abufrejoval
    Admin said:
    Montage Technology has launched the 5th Gen Jintide processors, based on Intel's recent Xeon Emerald Rapids lineup.

    Chinese chip designer repacks Intel 5th Gen Xeon Emerald Rapids CPUs for the domestic market — 5th Gen Jintide chips feature up to 48 cores and 260... : Read more
    I remember being very excited after reading their HotChips paper, that sounded like technology they should be able to sell elsewhere, too. And now I wonder, if chips like that are also made and sold to military and government by Intel domestically...

    The Russians also have a CPU that allows to run x86 software in an emulation layer with hardware observation, because they have the same issue that they need to run x86 software they cannot trust.

    And these days in a Cloud or generally the need to run code you cannot trust (or data that turns into code via RoP) is a basic issue that affects everyone and every mobile phone, appliance or embedded device.

    CET like Shadow Stacks and Branch validation are a good start, but take far too long to become mainstream and may quite simply not be enough. ARM is doing some really interesting things there and I've seen RISC-V extensions aiming running potentially adversarial code.
    Reply