HP's New Itanium Systems Ideal for Rendering

HP's newly introduced Intel Itanium 2-based servers and workstations, delivering up to 50% faster application performance than previous Itanium 2-based systems, are perfectly suited to rendering large digital models.

The new Intel Itanium 2 processor with 6 MB of level 3 cache powers one- and two-way HP Workstations, as well as HP Integrity servers, which range from one- and two-way entry-level servers to the 64-processor Integrity Superdome server.

The HP Integrity servers and HP Itanium 2-based workstations provide "unparalleled performance," industry-leading scalability and expandability, and are supported by a broad range of technical independent software vendors (ISVs).

The Itanium 2-based systems are complemented by the industry-leading 32-bit HP ProLiant server line. HP is upgrading the ProLiant DL560, DL580, ML570, DL740 and DL760 servers and the HP ProLiant BL40p blade server with the latest Intel Xeon "Gallatin" processor MP at speeds up to 2.8 GHz.HP's new Itanium 2-based systems deliver industry-leading speed for high-performance computing (HPC) demands, with faster time-to-solution than any 64-bit RISC systems across a broad range of industrial applications in HPC and technical markets.

The new systems have an approximately 50% frequency increase over existing Itanium 2 processors at 900 MHz and 1.0 GHz. The new Intel Itanium 2 processor also supports twice the cache of previous Itanium 2-based systems, delivering an additional performance increase.

The new HP Integrity Superdome systems, available with Intel Itanium 2 processors at 1.5 GHz, help maximize a customer's return on IT investment with inexpensive in-box upgrades from PA-RISC to new Itanium 2 processors. These systems can be clustered with hptc/ClusterPack for scalability to multiple teraflops across thousands of processors.Also enhanced with the new Intel Itanium 2 processor, the HP Workstation zx6000 and the HP Integrity Server rx2600 deliver - for the first time - floating point and integer performance leadership.

Rachel McClary, worldwide production manager for Itanium Workstations, told VFXWorld.com, "The [animation] studios are impressed with memory and floating point performance." She added that 64-bit architecture is ideally suited for rendering large, complex digital models, and that raytracing needs are an immediate concern because 32-bit performance is not robust enough. In addition, the technical demands of the DCC market segment will no longer be constrained by 2-4 GB memory limitations of 32-bit architectures.

HP's extensive experience with Itanium 2-based systems combined with the use of the HP Scalable Processor Chipset zx1 and Chipset sx1000 result in leading system performance gains. The chipsets unleash the power of Itanium 2 processors by lowering memory latencies and increasing memory and input/output subsystem scalability.

With high clock frequencies and more sustained performance per clock than any other microprocessor architecture, the HP Integrity servers and Itanium 2-based workstations allow greater in-depth analysis and higher quality images on more complex models.

HP offers a fully scalable and compatible line of technical systems based on the new Itanium 2 processor -- from desk-side HP Workstations to cluster-ready Integrity servers that scale from two to 64 processors in individual servers and to thousands of processors in HPC Integrity clusters.

_ HP Integrity Superdome -- this highly scalable server, with 16 to 64 Intel Itanium 2 processors at 1.5 GHz (384 gigaflops peak), can be configured with up to 0.5 terabyte of memory, with 256 gigabytes per second local memory bandwidth and up to 40 GB/s of I/O bandwidth._ HP Integrity Server rx5670 - this one- to four-way (24 GFLOPS peak) server supports high levels (4 gigabytes per second) of I/O performance (with nine PCI-X slots) to exploit high-memory capacity (up to 48 GB of memory) and 12.8 GB/s of memory bandwidth.

_ HP Integrity Server rx2600 - this dual-processor (12 GFLOPS peak) server is available with either the 1.3-GHz or 1.5-GHz frequency of the new Intel Itanium 2 processor, complemented with a 6.4 GB/s processor bus and 8.6 GB/s of memory bandwidth, all in a cluster-ready, rack-optimized 2U footprint.

_ HP Workstation zx6000 - this one- or two-way workstation is available with either the 1.3-GHz or 1.5-GHz processor and offers high-performance AGP graphics for customers using 2D or 3D design or modeling applications. In addition, the HP Workstation zx6000 supports up to 24 GB of memory, ideal for customers with very large models or datasets.

In the fall, the HP Workstation zx2000 is planned to be enhanced and should provide superb performance at an affordable price.

Palo Alto, California-based HP (www.hp.com) offers solutions spanning IT infrastructure, personal computing and access devices, global services and imaging and printing for consumers, enterprises and small and medium business.