Room filled with server racks.

Exploring the Value of Intel® Accelerator Engines


Data-driven insights are the foundation of strategic decision-making, customer understanding, market adaptation, and the discovery of new opportunities. In today’s dynamically shifting markets, businesses face the tough challenge of getting these insights before their competition does. We sought to address this challenge in an Intel-sponsored study that looked at how Intel® Xeon® Scalable processors with built-in Intel® Accelerator Engines can help boost workload performance for modern workloads.

Prowess Consulting explored the benefits of CPU-based acceleration on a variety of workloads. Our investigation revealed how 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors with built-in accelerators can help businesses achieve higher overall performance, higher per-core performance, better power efficiency, and a secure foundation for future scalability compared to previous-generation Intel and previous-/current-generation AMD processors.

Accelerated Performance Across Multiple Hardware Generations

4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors feature purpose-built Intel Accelerator Engines. According to Intel, 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors have more built-in accelerators than any other currently available CPU.1 Intel Accelerator Engines can help achieve higher workload performance and performance per watt, support more workloads per core, and consolidate server real estate, all without the need for additional discrete hardware. All these enhancements can help lower total cost of ownership (TCO)—a notable benefit in this age of skyrocketing energy and licensing costs.

Our report notes three key benefits of using servers powered by 4th Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors, compared to 3rd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors and 3rd and 4th Generation AMD EPYC™ processors:2

  • Higher overall performance
  • Higher performance per watt
  • Higher performance per core

In addition to operating seamlessly with current software, Intel Xeon Scalable processors can accommodate future expansions, scale-outs, and upgrades. Organizations can upgrade with the knowledge that their servers will remain secure, scalable, and available across multiple generations of hardware.

Processor Performance Versus Core Counts

When it comes to choosing a processor, our findings suggest that better results are attainable by matching workloads to appropriate core counts plus built-in accelerators, rather than relying solely on core counts or frequencies. Upgrading a server using general-purpose processors and without considering your workload’s specific compute and memory demands can lead to overspending on hardware that does not deliver the best business value.

While it’s true that higher core counts produce performance gains, Intel Xeon Scalable processors can offload some tasks from the cores to built-in Intel Accelerator Engines (see Figure 1). These offloads can improve overall workload performance and reduce power usage because the accelerators are inherently more performant and efficient for specific tasks than general-purpose cores. Offloading also frees up the CPU for other tasks, enhancing overall server efficiency.

The diagram illustrates the difference between a "Server with CPUs only" (on the left) and a "Server with CPUs and built-in accelerators" (on the right). The "Server with CPUs only" diagram shows that the CPU cores handle all compute-intensive processing for an application. The "Server with CPUs and built-in accelerators" diagram shows that some compute-intensive processing for an application is handled by the CPU cores and some is offloaded to the built-in accelerator.

Figure 1. A built-in accelerator can process offloaded tasks more efficiently than cores alone

Learn More

Learn more by reading the full report, “Transform Your Business and Save Money Using CPUs with Built-In Accelerators.”

To learn more about what we do at Prowess Consulting, view our latest research and follow us on LinkedIn.

1 Intel. “4th Gen Intel® Xeon® Scalable Processors with Built-in Accelerators.” Accessed October 2023.
2 Prowess Consulting. “Transform Your Business and Save Money Using CPUs with Built-In Accelerators.” September 2023.

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