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China's most powerful chip: Alibaba introduces proprietary 128-core ARM-based Yitian 710 server processor

Alibaba's Yitian 710 is the most advanced Chinese mass-produced chip. (Image Source: Alibaba Cloud)
Alibaba's Yitian 710 is the most advanced Chinese mass-produced chip. (Image Source: Alibaba Cloud)
The Yitian 710 is designed by Alibaba subsidiary T-Head and is currently the most advanced mass-production processor coming from China. It has more transistors than the Latest Apple M1 Max processor and integrates 128 ARM v9 5 nm cores clocked at up to 3.2 GHz.
Bogdan Solca,

Alibaba Cloud announced its proprietary ARM-based Yitian 710 server processors at its annual Apsara Conference. The processors are designed by T-Head, a subsidiary of Alibaba created in 2018, and are produced by TSMC on the 5 nm nodes. Alibaba will use these processors to power the Panjiu servers for its own cloud infrastructure.

The Yitian 710 is certainly an impressive piece of technology, as it integrates 128 ARM V9 cores clocked at up to 3.2 GHz with a total of 60 billion transistors. For reference, an AMD EPYC Rome only has 40 billion transistors. Presumably, T-Head used ARM’s Neoverse N1 cores, although Alibaba does not specify the exact core technology. It supports octa-channel DDR5 RAM, 96 PCIe 5.0 lanes and is designed with multiprocessor configurations in mind. As far as performance is concerned, Alibaba claims that the Yitian 710 is 20% faster and 50% more energy efficient than the current state-of-the-art ARM server CPUs (possibly referring to Amazon’s Graviton2), with a SPECint2017 score of 440 points.

Since the ARM acquisition is still pending and Nvidia might impose restrictions in the future if it manages to finalize the deal, Alibaba is also determined to explore the RISC-V architecture as a viable alternative. For now, there are no plans to sell the T-Head Yitian 710 processors to other companies, so any direct competition with Intel or AMD is out of the question.


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Bogdan Solca
Bogdan Solca - Senior Tech Writer - 1750 articles published on Notebookcheck since 2017
I first stepped into the wondrous IT&C world when I was around seven years old. I was instantly fascinated by computerized graphics, whether they were from games or 3D applications like 3D Max. I'm also an avid reader of science fiction, an astrophysics aficionado, and a crypto geek. I started writing PC-related articles for Softpedia and a few blogs back in 2006. I joined the Notebookcheck team in the summer of 2017 and am currently a senior tech writer mostly covering processor, GPU, and laptop news.
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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2021 10 > China's most powerful chip: Alibaba introduces proprietary 128-core ARM-based Yitian 710 server processor
Bogdan Solca, 2021-10-19 (Update: 2021-10-19)