ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Technology»
  • Computers & Software»
  • Computer Hardware

How HBM memories work

Updated on May 20, 2015

Last week some attended a conference call under NDA where AMD detailed specifications, origin, use and characteristics of the High Bandwidth Memory (HBM) that will include in its upcoming graphics cards. In fact, they are its spearhead, its main novelty and bulwark, so they wanted to focus especially on this.

AMD has explained that the GDDR5 memory, widely used in graphics cards from previous generations soon reach a point that will not be efficient and will succumb to the power of the graphics chipset. Before this, that is already inevitable, they decided to move and create a new form factor enabling fast, efficient memory... and much more. On the ever-increasing bandwidth and power demand, the GDDR5 can not be done more small and efficient, and there is something else: the space. GDDR5 memories are put around the chip, increasing the size of the essential primary interface for high-end GPU to reach the full power. With the HBM, AMD has fixed all these aspects.

Perhaps it sounds you that the main component of the HBM is something called Interposer. Basically, the Interposer is a substrate where is introduced the Fiji chip and video memories, which in this case are stacked to save space and gain power, bandwidth and reduce consumption. Joining the VRAM and GPU in the Interposer, the proximity allows greater efficiency and, above all, faster communication to adapt the device to the new needs of bandwidth and power. It is thanks to this Interposer that the HBM are possible.

The secret of the HBM, besides this Interposer shortening times of access between different VRAM chips, are those own VRAM chips which, as we have advanced, are stacked. In one of them we can find various dies of VRAM that stack above a logical die, and all them are intercommunicated vertically together thanks to some connections called TSVs (through-silicon-vias) and microbumps, both connections used to interconnect all the layers of VRAM with the Interposer and, at the same time, with the GPU.

We have already seen the benefits of the HBM and the Interposer, but how do is interpret this in numbers? GDDR5 memory bus width is 32 bits, while the HBM is 1,024-bit. The memory speed is less: 1.750 MHz (7 Gbps) to the GDDR5 and up to 500 MHz (1 Gbps) to the HBM, something that doesn't matter too much because stacking favors final speed. In addition, there is a greater bandwidth: 28 GB/s per chip in the GDDR5 and over 100 GB/s for the HBM, and a lower voltage (1, 5V went to 1, 3V).

Something that is going to be especially striking is that the HBM space save infinitely more: If 1 GB GDDR5 could occupy a surface area of 28 x 24 mm, the same amount of VRAM in HBM occupies 7 x 5 mm, which is 94% less space that can be used for more VRAM... or simply to make the smaller graphics card. I.e. to less space with performance per watt 3 times higher than the GDDR5. Developed technologies (such as defined connectors, or the own Interposer), make an interesting technology the HBM.

 
HBM
GDDR5
Bus Width
1024-bit
32-bit
Clock Speed
up to 500 MHz (1 GBps)
up to 1750 MHz (7 GBps)
Bandwidth
>100 GB/s per stack
up to 28 GB/s per chip
Voltage
1.3 V
1.5 V
5 stars for HBM memories

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is used to quickly and efficiently deliver files such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisements has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)