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The new AMD socket may support up to 12TB of memory

The upcoming SP5 socket for the AMD EPYC Genoa processors has just been leaked, showing the board in its full glory, complete with 12-channel DDR5 support and 128 PCIe Gen 5.0 lanes.

This means that the motherboard will support a whopping 12TB of system memory alongside a tremendously powerful data center processor.

AMD SP5 socket pictured.

Although AMD EPYC Genoa is yet to be released, it’s on track to launch this year, and according to AMD, the first samples of the CPU were already sent out to customers. That explains how a picture of the matching new SP5 socket motherboard had been leaked by a ServerTheHome (STH) forum member.

The new socket will usher in the next generation of AMD EPYC processors, including both Genoa (set to release in 2022) and Bergamo (2023). Looking at the board in its full glory shows the staggering amounts of power that a computer of that size requires in 2022 and beyond.

The pictured SP5 socket comes with 6,096 land grid array (LGA) contact pads, a massive upgrade over the current-gen SP3 with just 4,094 contacts. What we’re seeing in the photo is actually a dual 2P platform with two SP5 sockets, adding up to a total of 24 dual in-line memory module (DIMM) slots.

In total, a single board will support 12-channel DDR5 memory. This means that the upcoming AMD Genoa could be paired with up to 12TB memory on just one motherboard. Calling that an impressive number would be an understatement, and the numbers only get bigger from here.

AMD EPYC Zen 4 Genoa processors.

Upping the number of memory channels is a considerable upgrade for AMD EPYC, which has previously supported up to eight, and now receives an additional four. Of course, the previous SP3 socket only supported DDR4 memory — this meant that the capacity maxed out at 4TB per chip. With the switch to DDR5 memory offered by SP5, that will climb up to 12TB. However, as Wccftech points out, 3D stacked DIMMs will have to be used in order to achieve this kind of capacity.

AMD EPYC Genoa will be the first AMD data center processor to support DDR5 memory and PCIe Gen 5.0. The chip will feature a massive 96 cores and 192 threads and it will be made based on TSMC’s 5nm technology. The chip itself has already been leaked before and it’s enormous, as can be expected from a processor of this power.

The maximum socket TDP will be rated at 700 watts. Circling back to RAM, Genoa will support not just a lot of it, but it will be speedy as well: The SP5 socket allows for the use of DDR5-5200 memory. Although Genoa is already impressive, its successor, Bergamo, will bring the numbers higher still, maxing out at 128 cores while still utilizing the same SP5 socket.

No official release dates have been announced as of yet, but we do know that AMD EPYC Genoa is supposed to launch this year. Sapphire Rapids Xeon, which is Intel’s counterpart of the AMD Genoa, is also releasing in 2022 with DDR5 and PCIe Gen 5.0 support.

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Monica J. White
Monica is a UK-based freelance writer and self-proclaimed geek. A firm believer in the "PC building is just like expensive…
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