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HP Recommended
Z820 Workstation LJ452AV

I have a couple of Z820  Workstations with following specs:

SKU / product #: LJ452AV

Bios: J63 v03.94

Boot Block date : 03/06/2013

ME Firmware version:

Memory: 128 GB DDR3 / 1333MHz


Giving all the info I can since there are different version motherboards based on what I've already found in my searches.


The quick question:

They currently have dual E5-2670 v1 2.60 GHz CPUs. Can I swap them out to a new version but lower power dual E5-2630L v2 2.40 GHz?


More info:

I've looked at the HP docs, spec sheets, and searched Google for a couple of hours and can't find any "L" Xeon CPUs listed in a Z820 but I do see many E5 v2 so I'm wondering. I mentioned the motherboard version since in my searches I found out there are two versions (HP should update some of their docs but thank you HP community). It looks like I have the newer version MB so that is a plus.


I know I'll lose some cores and a little speed but I'm not even pushing them that much as is. The reason I want to go to the lower power is so I can run these workstations non-stop for a few VMs that they host. The goal is to save on some electricity since they will be running non-stop.  I know I can buy new more efficient hardware but we already had these and they have already been configured and running for a while so I don't want to reinstall and reconfigure everything again on new hardware. That plus the up front cost of the new hardware. BTW, I can get the CPU's "used" really cheap and it's more than one workstation so it all adds up.


Future thanks for any help anyone can provide.


HP Recommended



According to the Boot Block Date of 2013, the subject z820's can run Xeon E5-16XX, E5-26XX, Xeon E5-16XX v, and E5-26XX v2. The E5-1600 of both first version and v2 are single processor only and the E5-2600 may be used singly or in a pair.


In general, E5 v2 processors having the same numerical designation will have more cores and a higher clock speed than first versions, although the lower core count E5-1600 designations- 4 and 6 core,  will have the same cores, but higher clocks .


I often consult Passmark benchmark results- of which there are 1.2M- so as to verify if there are any existing configurations of particular hardware combinations.  There are 18 baselines of systems using the E5-2630L v2  (6C @ 2.4 / 2.8GHz /60W) and there no listings for HP systems. There are listings for Supermicro motherboards, "Oracle Corporation Virtual Box" The "L" lower power usage are as mentioned, for server use and on ASUS X79 motherboards. The System Ratings are quite low, the highest dual-CPU system being being 2736 with a CPU = 13846.  


For comparison, the last dual processor system in this office:


HP z620_1 (2012)(Rev 5) 2X Xeon E5-2690 (8-core @ 2.9 /3.8GHz) / 64GB (4X 8GB +4X 8GB DDR3-1600) / Quadro K2200 (4GB) / Samsung 850 Evo 250GB + Seagate Constellation ES.3 1TB / 800W > Windows 7 Professional 64-bit > HP 2711x (1920 X 1080)
[ Passmark System Rating= 5675 / CPU= 22625 / 2D= 815 / 3D = 3580 / Mem = 2522 / Disk = 12640 ] 9.25.16 Single Thread Mark = 1903


This is running 2X E5-2690 8C @ 2.9/3.8GHz / 135W- first series and the number of clock cycles per unit time is comparatively +63%. Also the single-threaded performance is much higher due to the clock speeds.  The Single thread rating the E5-2630L v2 is 1344  and with 16-cores rather than 12 and  if each core is a VM,  the through rate of the data streams could be +60%. The first version uses up to DDR3-1600 whereas v2's can use 1866.


It's possible that the E5-2630L v2 may run on a z820, and the performance will be adequate for the stated use, but consider a detailed look at the way the selected OS addresses power management of server hardware.  Three of the Passmark systems are running Windows Server, a couple are using W7 and 8.1 Enterprise, but also a couple each of W7 Pro 8.1 so the situation is not completely clarified by that list. I wonder if there is some Linux flavor that could be tailored a bit for that use. One of the hosts of the YouTuberator , Level1Techs, is really an expert in Linux server applications, perhaps there is way to ask a question there.  It's not the same thing, but I tried "L" RAM in a z620 and it was "unhappy"- it seemed it had to wake and then it would post training errors. There does seem to be special conditions to server-specific hardware in applying the power saving modes.


It's an equation I imagine would be complicated  further by the proportion of core idle time.




HP z620_2 (2017) (R7) > Xeon E5-1680 v2 (8C@ 4.3GHz) / z420 Liquid Cooling / 64GB (HP/Samsung 8X 8GB DDR3-1866 ECC registered) / Quadro P2000 5GB _ GTX 1070 Ti 8GB / HP Z Turbo Drive M.2 256GB AHCI + Samsung 970 EVO M.2 NVMe 500GB + HGST 7K6000 4TB + HP/HGST Enterprise 6TB / Focusrite Scarlett 2i4 sound interface + 2X Mackie MR824 / 825W PSU / Windows 7 Prof.’l 64-bit (HP OEM) > 2X Dell Ultrasharp U2715H (2560 X 1440)

[ Passmark Rating = 6280 / CPU rating = 17178 / 2D = 819 / 3D= 12629 / Mem = 3002 / Disk = 13751 / Single Thread Mark = 2368 [10.23.18]

HP z420_3: (2015) (R11) Xeon E5-1650 v2 (6C@ 4.3GHz) / z420 Liquid cooling / 64GB (HP/Samsung 8X 8GB DDR3-1866 ECC registered) / NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 6GB/ Samsung 860 EVO 500GB + HGST 4TB / ASUS Essence STX + Logitech z2300 2.1 / 600W PSU > Windows 7 Professional 64-bit (HP OEM ) > Samsung 40" 4K

[Passmark System Rating: = 5644 / CPU = 15293 / 2D = 847 / 3D = 10953 / Mem = 2997 Disk = 4858 /Single Thread Mark = 2384 [6.27.19]

HP Recommended

first of all the can i run v2 cpu's question has been asked and answered so many time on this forum and via google i'm simply going to ask you to use this forums "search" function or do a google search for the answer to this common question


google search:

hp z820 Boot Block date : 03/06/2013


next, in regards to hp updating their information,............they do if you look at the HP "quickspecs" for the z820 at the bottom of the page is the revision date of the document



c04111526 — DA – 14264 — Worldwide — Version 48 — April 1, 2015



DA - 14264 Worldwide — Version 4 — April 1, 2012


the latest quickspecs show the current status of processors that HP has tested/certified for the z820 hp keeps older revisions because they are workstations and clients who buy/use these systems require this


next, will a non listed cpu work? most likely but since it's not a HP approved cpu it's up to you to determine this and resolve any compatibility issues


in general a Ivy Bridge  "L" low power cpu should work in a v2 z820 motherboard without any issues and since the cost for the cpu you list is so low (30/40 dollars USD) there's  really no reason to preventing you from testing this on one system


also, a quick google search of HP z820 E5-2630L shows several venders selling this config online



HP Recommended

Thanks BambiBoomZ

That was a wealth of knowledge and I know the performance wouldn't be great. I guess an analogy of what I'm trying to do is "keep the lights on in an old building AND maybe convert the incandescent bulbs to LED" to save some energy. LOL If I had time and money I'd do what you are saying and upgrade (swap out the actual fixture to integrated LED and maybe even add motion sensors too.  🙂


Thanks DGroves

I knew v2 CPU's work as I originally stated "I do see many E5 2v" in both the quick specs and posts. I also did many Google searches with one just being "HP z820 E5-2630L". However, almost every link I clicked had info for the regular 2630 v2 and not the "L" low power. I think I found one or two links which did have the "L" but the sites weren't the most reassuring (never heard of them). As far as HP updating their info, I guess I should have been "clearer" in saying HP should make it "clear" the different version motherboards and compatibility. I don't remember seeing MB versions in their docs (it's VERY likely I read it and forgot it since I've been reading/looking at a lot lately). In fact, the only reason I knew of the MB versions was by searching Google and HP forums. I did read MANY posts which is why I did say "thank you HP community" because I learned a lot in the last day reading all the posts and one of those lessons was the different MB and Boot Block date which is why prefaced my question with that info. 🙂


I'm also in the same boat with you in that "will a non listed cpu work? most likely". I was just posting and trying to find some reassurance. 🙂


Based on your advice and level of expertise, I am going to order the 2 CPUs and see how it goes. Hopefully I can get them and swap them out soon so I can post my findings that may be able to help someone else in the future.


I remember in my searches I found a couple of videos on youtube of someone swapping out a pair of CPUs and it seemed pretty straight forward. I also found and downloaded the Maintenance and Service Guide. It seems straightforward and like every other CPU swap I've done. However, if anyone has any "gotchas" let me know.


Thanks again to both of you.


HP Recommended

You asked for added tips:


1.  Your BIOS is not the latest.  You want to update BIOS before a processor update to the latest to avoid painting yourself into a corner.  BIOS updates give you the latest HP-supplied microcode to allow the latest processors HP has certified to run.  It is no fun to have an old BIOS version in place while you are updating to a newer processor that your older BIOS knows nothing about.


2.  Updating BIOS has become somewhat more risky if you are running W10.  The old software for in-OS BIOS upgrade made by HP can perform poorly and brick your system... it was written for XP and W7.  Thus, take the time to learn how to update your BIOS from within BIOS.  That is built in to the BIOS and is being performed under the most primative OS (BIOS itself).  It is posted about in here many times.


3.  Thermal paste:  I have upgraded processors in many of these HP workstations.  My favorite thermal paste is Noctua NT-H1.  They have a 2 version and some others.  None of the newer ones spread as nicely as the NT-H1.  It has more than enough functionality, but Brian in the forum here (who overclocks) uses another version from another brand, and does very well with that also.

† The opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the authors, not of HP. By using this site, you accept the <a href="https://www8.hp.com/us/en/terms-of-use.html" class="udrlinesmall">Terms of Use</a> and <a href="/t5/custom/page/page-id/hp.rulespage" class="udrlinesmall"> Rules of Participation</a>.