Supermicro SuperServer Xeon D increases DDR4 support from 2133MHz to 2400MHz while Xeon D-1541 bundle prices are lowered

Posted by Paul Braren on Jun 22 2016 (updated on Jun 19 2017) in
  • Virtualization
  • ESXi
  • Homelab
  • Memory
  • Updates to this article added below, with automatic 200MHz speed recognition arriving with BIOS 1.2, for the Xeon D-1541 only. I've been informed that this is unlikely to change, but any difference in speeds of any other Xeon D system are unlikely to be noticeable.

    When the Xeon D was first shipped last summer, those 2133MHz speeds were the champion of the entire Xeon product line. Nice perk for a next-gen, forward-thinking product line, especially given they're priced lower than most Xeon chip families.

    More recently, you may have noticed that 2400 speeds of DDR4 ECC RAM modules quietly showed up on Supermicro's various product pages, such as the beloved Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T:

    and the X10SDV-TLN4F Mini-ITX motherboard that is inside this system:


    Here's the thing. My new Canadian friend, the proud owner of the world's first 16 core Xeon D-1587 Supermicro SuperServer (build list here) had mentioned in the video featured below that he was trying and failing to get the supported MEM-DR432L-SL01-ER24 memory (that Supermicro lists here) recognized by any OS at full 2400MHz speeds, even though his new system's BIOS 1.1a detected that 2400MHz capability. You can read more about this here:

    or you can see for yourself, in this video that's queued to just the right spot for you:

    World's first 16 core Intel Xeon D-1587 Supermicro SuperServer Mini-Tower

    Waiting for next BIOS release (1.2?)

    It's typical for new Supermicro boards to arrive with a later release of the BIOS than is available for download for existing products. About a month later, a new release arrives. This is exactly what happened with the Xeon D-1541 release, detailed at:

    So I am assuming and hoping that this is temporary situation resolved by the next BIOS release. Perhaps it'll be called BIOS 1.1b, or more likely, BIOS 1.2. And it should be compatible with the Xeon D-1540, Xeon D-1541, and Xeon D-1587 systems that I've discussed in many TinkerTry articles. It should actually work on any Xeon D system or motherboard that Supermicro makes.


    I can't conclude much of anything yet, other than to say any marginal speed-up is likely to be only noticeable in some synthetic benchmarks. I don't have any 2400GHz RAM to test actually, and I'm not quite sure if systems with a mix of 2133GHz and 2400GHz RAM would behave happily at the lower 2133GHz speed the BIOS would choose, only hands-on testing would determine that for sure. Of course, it should work just fine. I don't currently have any loaners to try out for myself, and I'm certainly not going to lay down $700 just to see a miniscule speed boost.

    In the end, it's a good thing that instead of raising prices for the slight boost in DDR4 speeds, Wiredzone actually dropped the overall bundle pricing. All the latest prices and affiliate links can be found at the usual spot, clicking the little server picture seen at the top right of all TinkerTry pages, which brings you right here:

    Supermicro 32GB DDR4 PC4-19200 [2400MHz] 288-pin RDIMM ECC Registered

    Cost was $350 USD last summer, more than double today's cost. Back then, 2400MHz was hard to find and cost quite a bit more.

    Supermicro 32GB DDR4 PC4-17000 [2133MHz] 288p RDIMM

    This same MEM-DR432L-SL01-ER24 is also available on Amazon and Newegg, but the prices there are currently considerably higher.

    Dec 13 2016 Update

    There still seems to be an issue with getting 2400MHz memory recognized as 2133MHz, demonstrated in my report to Supermicro here:

    Dec 16 2016 Update

    Supermicro has acknowledged that they received my reports, but I don't yet have a status update ready. Intel specs do state 2400MHz support, which SebastianJ published in writing here.

    Jun 19 2017 Update

    Wiredzone has confirmed that only the Xeon D-1541 supports 2400MHz memory speeds. Because 2133MHz memory has become rare, and sometimes costs more than 2400MHz, Wiredzone continues to ship all Supermicro SuperServer bundles with 2400MHz memory modules.

    I tested out BIOS 1.2 and it shows automatic recognition of 2400MHz memory speeds, see both this article:

    and this video:

    Supermicro SuperServer Xeon D BIOS 1.2 and IPMI 3.52 firmware Upgradeapolooza

    See also at TinkerTry

    See also