Intel Xeon Platinum 8156 Review

High-end server processor released in 2017 with 4 cores and 8 threads. With base clock at 3.6GHz, max speed at 3.7GHz, and a 105W power rating. Xeon Platinum 8156 is based on the Skylake SP 14nm family and part of the Xeon Platinum series.
Price 2.4%
Speed 75%
Productivity 64%
Gaming 88%
Category Server
Target high-end
Socket Compatibility 3647
Integrated Graphics
Cooler Included
Overclock Potential 0 %
Year 2017 Model
Price 7000 USD
Number of Cores 4 Cores
Number of Threads 8 Threads
Core Frequency 3.6 GHz
Boost Frequency 3.7 GHz
Max Stable Overclock 3.7 GHz
Power Consumption 105 W
Manufacturing Process 14 nm
L3 Cache 17 MB
Maximum Supported Memory 768 GB
Price-Value Score 2.4 %
Speed Score 75 %
Productivity Score 64 %
Gaming Score 88 %
Max 1080p Bottleneck 32 %
Max 1440p Bottleneck 16 %
Max 4K Bottleneck 8 %
Overall Score 40/100

The Xeon Platinum 8156 is one of Intel's high-end Server processors. It was released in 2017 with 4 cores and 8 threads. With base clock at 3.6GHz, max speed at 3.7GHz, and a 105W power rating. The Xeon Platinum 8156 is based on the Skylake SP 14nm family and is part of the Xeon Platinum series.

The Xeon Platinum 8156 slots in beneath the Xeon Platinum 8158, which comes with 14nm compute die to yield a 12-core 24-thread part. Intel has worked wonders to reduce the impact of this sort of multi-chip arrangement, but it's fair to assume that the Xeon Platinum 8156s single-compute-die design, paired with a higher TDP rating that facilitates more aggressive boost clocks, could actually rival the Xeon Platinum 8158 in some applications – games included.

We covered the deep dive details of the Skylake SP chip design in our Intel Xeon Platinum 8158 and Xeon Platinum 8153 review, so head there for more information on the Xeon Platinum 8156's architecture, which is identical to the Xeon Platinum 8153.

As the higher-priced version of the Xeon Platinum 8153, the Xeon Platinum 8156 has higher base and Boost frequencies of 3.6 and 3.7 GHz, respectively. That's an increase in base frequency and a bump to boost clocks, but the real advantage should lay in the higher Package Power Tracking (PPT) envelope, which is a measurement of the maximum amount of power delivered to the socket. The Xeon Platinum 8153's PPT tops out at 125W, while the motherboard can pump up to 142W to the Xeon Platinum 8156 at peak performance. That opens up much more aggressive boost behavior, on both single and multiple cores, that could widen the performance gap beyond what we see on the spec sheet.

What this all means is that the Intel Xeon Platinum 8156 is an absolute beast when it comes to multi-threaded workloads, especially at this price point. If you're counting on doing some video editing or compiling one hell of an Excel spreadsheet, you're going to see firsthand a performance boost with the Xeon Platinum 8156.

Our look today at the Intel Xeon Platinum 8156 showed that it is a very capable processor. A 4-core processor sounds like it would be really under-powered these days, but we were pleasantly surprised with a snappy and very capable system. Having just 4 cores had this processor coming in at the back of the pack for heavily threaded workloads, but it performed better than some of its more expensive siblings in lightly threaded workloads where it shined thanks to its high base clocks.

Now the biggest question is can Intel’s Xeon Platinum processor play games? The answer is simply yes as it got a respectable gaming score of 88% in our benchmarks.

Which GPU to Pick for Intel Xeon Platinum 8156

Below is a comparison of all graphics cards average FPS performance (using an average of 80+ games at ultra quality settings), combined with the Intel Xeon Platinum 8156.

GPU Price Cost/Frame Avg 1080p Avg 1440p Avg 4K
NVIDIA TITAN RTX 24GB $2,499 $19.5 128.3 FPS
120.8 FPS
79.4 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti 11GB $1,299 $10.4 124.9 FPS
117.6 FPS
77.3 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER 8GB $699 $6.2 113.3 FPS
105.7 FPS
69.1 FPS
NVIDIA TITAN V 12GB $2,999 $27.6 108.6 FPS
102.3 FPS
68.6 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 8GB $699 $6.5 107.1 FPS
98.8 FPS
64.1 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 Ti 11GB $759 $7.6 100.4 FPS
94.3 FPS
61.6 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 SUPER 8GB $499 $5 99.8 FPS
91 FPS
59.4 FPS
NVIDIA TITAN Xp 12GB $1,199 $12.2 98.4 FPS
91 FPS
60.8 FPS
AMD Radeon VII 16GB $699 $7.1 98.4 FPS
90.3 FPS
58.1 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 5700 XT 8GB $399 $4.2 95.9 FPS
87.9 FPS
56.4 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 8GB $499 $5.3 94.6 FPS
85 FPS
56.2 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 SUPER 8GB $400 $4.5 89.5 FPS
79.1 FPS
51.4 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 5700 8GB $349 $4 87.9 FPS
80.6 FPS
51.7 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 8GB $499 $5.8 85.3 FPS
77.1 FPS
49.6 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6GB $350 $4.2 84.2 FPS
72.8 FPS
46.4 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT 6GB $279 $3.4 82.9 FPS
75.4 FPS
48.2 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 295X2 4GB $1,499 $18.8 79.9 FPS
71.2 FPS
48.8 FPS
AMD Radeon RX Vega 64 8GB $499 $6.3 79.7 FPS
73.2 FPS
46.8 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 Ti 8GB $409 $5.2 79 FPS
71.4 FPS
45.8 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN X 12GB $999 $13 76.8 FPS
68.6 FPS
44.1 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti 6GB $279 $3.7 75.2 FPS
67.9 FPS
43.5 FPS
AMD Radeon RX Vega 56 8GB $399 $5.3 74.7 FPS
68.4 FPS
43.9 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB $399 $5.5 72.8 FPS
65.1 FPS
41.5 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER 6GB $229 $3.2 70.9 FPS
64.1 FPS
41.2 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti 6GB $649 $9.7 66.9 FPS
60.1 FPS
38.5 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 6GB $220 $3.3 66.7 FPS
60.3 FPS
38.6 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 590 8GB $279 $4.4 63.3 FPS
55.5 FPS
34.9 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 FURY X 4GB $649 $10.7 60.7 FPS
57.1 FPS
37.6 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER 4GB $160 $2.8 58.1 FPS
52.4 FPS
33.5 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT 8GB 8GB $199 $3.5 57.6 FPS
50.5 FPS
31.6 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 4GB $549 $9.6 57.3 FPS
51 FPS
32.9 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 580 8GB $229 $4.1 56.1 FPS
49.2 FPS
30.7 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 Nano 4GB $649 $11.8 55.2 FPS
51.1 FPS
33.4 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN BLACK 6GB $999 $18.6 53.6 FPS
47.2 FPS
31.8 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 FURY 4GB $549 $10.5 52.2 FPS
48.1 FPS
31.1 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB 6GB $254 $4.9 52.1 FPS
46 FPS
29.5 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT 4GB 4GB $169 $3.3 51.6 FPS
45.4 FPS
28.3 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 390X 8GB $429 $8.5 50.2 FPS
46.1 FPS
30 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 3GB 3GB $170 $3.4 49.4 FPS
43.8 FPS
28.1 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 4GB $329 $6.8 48.6 FPS
42.6 FPS
28.4 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 480 8GB $400 $8.5 47.2 FPS
42.9 FPS
28.2 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 390 8GB $329 $7 46.9 FPS
42.1 FPS
25.8 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 570 4GB $169 $3.7 46.3 FPS
41.5 FPS
26.1 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 4GB $149 $3.4 44.3 FPS
39.7 FPS
25.4 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 470 4GB $179 $4.3 41.3 FPS
37.2 FPS
23.8 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 380X 4GB $229 $6.6 34.8 FPS
31 FPS
20.2 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 285 2GB $249 $8 31.2 FPS
27.9 FPS
17.2 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 380 2GB $199 $6.4 31 FPS
27.6 FPS
17.2 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB $169 $5.5 30.5 FPS
27.3 FPS
17.5 FPS
AMD Radeon R9 280 3GB $279 $9.2 30.2 FPS
27.3 FPS
16.5 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 2GB $199 $6.7 29.8 FPS
26.5 FPS
16.8 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 3GB $169 $6.5 26 FPS
23.1 FPS
14.5 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 560 4GB $99 $4.1 24 FPS
21.1 FPS
13.3 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 950 2GB $159 $6.7 23.6 FPS
20.6 FPS
13.5 FPS
AMD Radeon R7 370 2GB $149 $6.5 23.1 FPS
19.4 FPS
12.8 FPS
AMD Radeon R7 265 2GB $149 $6.5 23 FPS
18.8 FPS
12.4 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 460 4GB $140 $6.6 21.2 FPS
18.7 FPS
11.9 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 750 Ti 2GB $149 $7.3 20.5 FPS
16.1 FPS
10.6 FPS
AMD Radeon RX 550 2GB $79 $4.7 16.8 FPS
14.8 FPS
9.3 FPS
NVIDIA GeForce GT 1030 2GB $79 $4.9 16 FPS
14.1 FPS
8.6 FPS
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