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Broadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC Teardown

24 February 2009
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Technology Teardown Services.

Overview

Per Dell-Broadcom® NetXtremeTM II 57710 single port 10GBASE-T Ethernet PCI-Express network interface cards from Dell are ideal for data centers requiring 10GbE performance and bandwidth at affordable prices. Simplified network deployment comes standard with the 10GbE cards since they utilize existing copper cabling (CAT6A) connecting over distances up-to 100 meters. For optimal performance an x8 slot is recommended.

Broadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC Main ImageBroadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC Main Image

Target Market

(Per Dell this card is specifically made for M1000e-Series Blade Servers). Generally speaking, however, this type of card is aimed at server suppliers and IT service companies looking for high bandwidth interconnect within centralized compute/server environments. Per Dell: "These adapters are well-suited for environments where increasing numbers of servers are being consolidated through virtualization.

Released

Date not found.

Pricing and Availability

Pricing - not found, but assumed to be in the $1K range.

Volume Estimations

For the purposes of this teardown analysis, we have assumed a lifetime production volume of 15,000 units over a 2 year+ product lifetime. This is reflected in our pricing as we have elevated many standard prices to account to some extent for these low-volumes.

As a reminder, teardown volume production assumptions are primarily used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially). Unless assumed volumes are different by an order of magnitude, minor changes in volume (say 1 million vs. 2) rarely have a large net effect on our final analysis because of this.

Broadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC Cost AnalysisBroadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC Cost Analysis

Cost Notes

In low volumes cost estimation is more difficult in higher volumes because of all of the cost adders and generous pads that EMS provders and distributors may add to offset fixed costs associated with a program, that in large volumes, might amortize to a few dollars or pennies (depending on production volumes).

Furthermore, having seen the pricing structure for similar devices from competing manufacturers, we have calibrated our pricing approach for this analysis, and pricing methodology to be inline with our last delivery of 10Gb NICs as follows:

Standard components (ICs and other devices with part numbers): Distributor Resale Pricing (Worst-Case Scenario - highest prices one should logically pay).

Standard Components (Without part numbers) - we have doubled costs over our standard high volume costs - however the sky is the limit - in very low volumes, EMS partners may be dealing with broken reel pricing and scrap parts, inventory management costs, etc.) it would be easy to pay more than our estimates

Special ICs - Our modeling on this round, accounts for the very low volumes in question, and also is more specific about the test set-up assumptions which may drive costs through the roof for some components. The test costs are more significant than assumed in our first round of 10GbE card analysis. We have also added package yield, and test yields so that we can factor lower yields for some components, into the prices paid by the card OEMs.

Keep in mind, however, that as Dell is involved, and given their breadth of experience, they may be able to negotiate much better pricing than other, much smaller 10GbE card OEMs, despite the low volumes, so our assumption set is worst-case scenario for this product.

Furthermore, as we stated in our last Gigabit Ethernet card analyses, because of the specialized nature of many of the components in this NIC card, and the still nascent nature of 10GbE, many of the components sell for prices far removed from the underlying material costs, as the costs are ultimately more overhead driven at this stage in the lifecycle.

Major Cost Drivers (Representing ~88% of Direct Materials Costs)

BCM57710A1KPBG - Broadcom - Ethernet Controller - Dual Ports, 10-Gbps, TCP/IP & RDMA & iSCSI Compliant, Integrated XAUI/CX4 & x8 LANE PCI Express Interfaces

SFD7101BA-R0 - Solarflare Communications - Ethernet Transceiver - 10Gbps

SFA7101DB-R0 - Solarflare Communications - PHY

AD0312LX-K73 - ADDA - Fan - 12VDC, 0.05A, 30mm x 30mm x 6.5mm, w/ Integral 3-Wire Harness and 3-Position Pin Socket Connector

SFL7101C - Solarflare Communications - Interface Filter Device (Qty:4)

Inductor - Wound Ferrite Core, Shielded (Qty:6)

DR73-2R2-R - Cooper Bussmann -

Delton Technology, Inc. - 12-Layer - FR4, Lead-Free

Si7866ADP-T1 - Vishay - Siliconix - MOSFET - N-Channel, 20V, 40A (Qty:2)

MAX8833ETJ+ - Maxim - Regulator - Step-Down, Dual, Switching, 3A, 2MHz

Ceramic Multilayer - X5R/X7R (Qty:470)

Materials and Manufacturing* $235.77

* - iSuppli's standard production calculation methodology does not always lend itself to a high degree of accuracy in very low volumes. So to compensate for this, we generally elevate the 'overhead' figure in manufacturing costs to account for all of the extra costs (such as line set-up start-up / breakdown costs, and other miscellaneous costs).

What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing with basic test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.

Manufacturing Notes

OEM/ODM/EMS Relationships / Manufacturing

Unknown at the time of writing, however, it is assumed the OEM is using an EMS provider with operations in China (per labeling) to produce the units at this phase. They are assumed to be using the same relationships they have for motherboards and other peripherals to manufacture these cards, such as Mitac.

Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions

Based on Label, the PCBA the unit was assembled in China.

Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of 'finished' sub-assemblies, we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.

Remember also that labor rates are applied directly only to hand inserted components and systems in our bill of materials, and although regional assumptions do, these new rates do not have a direct effect on our modeled calculations of placement costs for automated SMD assembly lines. ""Auto" inserted components (such as SMT components) placement costs are calculated by an iSuppli algorithm which allocates a cost per component based on the size and pincount of the device. This calculation is affected by country or region of origin as well.

Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity

The Dell/Broadcom NetXtreme II 57710 card is, like other 10GbE network interface cards, is core-silicon intensive. The core of the design revolves around 3 major ICs - one from Broadcom and the other two from SolarFlare Communications. In fact, we are a little confused by the coexistence of the two chip(sets), as we are not entirely sure of the functionality or value-add of the SolarFlare chipset.

In terms of overall complexity, this translates to a total component count that puts this card at the high-end of 10GbE cards in terms of overall component count: this card features a total of 751 discrete components (most others range from ~600 to ~750). Oddly it shares the exact discrete component count with the previously analyzed NetXen 10Gb Ethernet Expansion card, despite being completely different designs.

Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design.

Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.

Design Notes

The core of the design is the Broadcom (BCM57710A1KPBG) Ethernet Controller. The device supports Dual Ports, 10-Gbps, is TCP/IP & RDMA & iSCSI Compliant and features Integrated XAUI/CX4 & x8 LANE PCI Express Interfaces. However, the previously unseen (in teardown analyses) SolarFlare Communications has a strong presence, though we weren't exactly sure and could not definitively determine the functionality of the two significant chips in the design, the #SFD7101BA-R0 (assumed to be an Ethernet Transceiver) and the #SFA7101DB-R0 (assumed to be a PHY).

Here is a summary of the major components used in the Broadcom NetXtreme II 57710 Single Port 10GBase-T Ethernet PCI-Express Network Interface Card design:

Main PCB - Main Components

Processing

  • Ethernet Controller - Broadcom - BCM57710A1KPBG - Dual Ports, 10-Gbps, TCP/IP & RDMA & iSCSI Compliant, Integrated XAUI/CX4 & x8 LANE PCI Express Interfaces

Transceiver

  • Ethernet Transceiver - Solarflare Communications - SFD7101BA-R0 - 10Gbps
  • PHY - Solarflare Communications - SFA7101DB-R0

Other - I/O & Interface

  • Interface Filter Device - Solarflare Communications - SFL7101C - (Qty: 4)

Broadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC - Box ContentsBroadcom NetXtreme II 57710 10GB NIC - Box Contents



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