Cisco Nexus 9000 Models Comparison: Nexus 9500 & Nexus 9300 Series

The Cisco Nexus 9000 series switches include both modular (Nexus 9500 switches) and fixed-port switches (Nexus 9300 switches). The Cisco Nexus 9000 switches are the next generation of data center switching infrastructure by providing two modes of operation: Cisco NX-OS mode and ACI mode.

In Cisco NX-OS Software mode, the Cisco Nexus 9000 Series addresses the new challenges of current infrastructure designs, while building on first-generation software-defined networking (SDN) solutions and providing a path to Cisco Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI). In Cisco ACI mode, the Cisco Nexus 9000 Series provides the industry’s most advanced answer to SDN with a powerful combination of hardware and software custom developed to provide a more robust and comprehensive solution than anything else available on the market.

If you need to read more general information about the Cisco 9000 Nexus switches, you can read the article “Cisco Nexus 9000 Series Switches Overview”.

In this article, we will share the main hardware capabilities comparison of Cisco Nexus 9000 Series switches, including Nexus 9500 modular Chassis, 40 GE modules, 10 GE Fiber modules, 10 GE Copper modules, and Nexus 9300 Fixed Chassis Comparison.

Nexus 9500 Modular Chassis

Cisco Nexus 9504 Switch Cisco Nexus 9508 Switch Cisco Nexus 9516 Switch
Form factor 7 RU 13 RU 21 RU
Line card slots 4 8 16
Supervisor slots 2 2 2
Fabric module slots 6 6 6
ACI support Yes * Yes Yes *
Bandwidth per slot (Tbps) 3.84 3.84 3.84
Bandwidth per system (Tbps) 15 30 60
Maximum number of 1/10G BASE-T ports 192 384 768
Maximum number of 10 GE ports 576 1152 2304
Maximum number of 40 GE ports 144 288 576
Airflow Front to back Front to back Front to back
Power supplies (3-kW AC) Up to 4 Up to 8 Up to 10
Fan trays 3 3 3

 

40 GE Modules

9636PQ 9536PQ 9432PQ 9736PQ
Usage 40G high-perf aggregation and FEX* 40GE aggregation, ACI Leaf, and FEX* 40G aggregation and FEX* ACI spine
Front panel ports 36x40GE 36x40GE 32x40GE 36x40GE
Standalone Yes Yes Yes No
ACI leaf No Yes* No No
ACI spine No No No Yes
Chassis support 4 and 8 slot 4, 8 and 16 slot 4, 8 and 16 slot 4*, 8 and 16*
40 GE ports 36 36 32 36
Switching performance Nonblocking 1.5:1 oversubscribed Line rate >200 byte Nonblocking
Buffer (MB) 36 104 24 42
Typical power (watts) 260 360 240 197
Minimum software version 6.1(2)I1(1) 6.1(2)I2(2a) 6.1(2)I2(2a) ACI-N9KDK9-11.0
Orderable Nov 2013 Jun 2014 Jun 2014 Jul 2014
SKUs N9K-X9636PQ N9K-X9536PQ N9K-X9432PQ N9K-X9736PQ

 

10 GE Fiber Modules

9564PX 9464PX
Usage 10 aggregation, ACI Leaf*, and FEX* 10 aggregation and FEX*
Front panel ports 48 x 10 GE + 4 x 40 GE 48 x 10 GE + 4 x 40 GE
Standalone Yes Yes
ACI leaf Yes* No
ACI spine No No
Chassis support 4, 8 and 16 slot 4, 8 and 16 slot
100 M/1 GE/10 GE copper ports NA NA
10 GE fiber ports 48 48
40 GE ports 4 4
Switching performance Nonblocking Line rate >200 byte
Buffer (MB) 104 12
Typical power 300 160
Minimum software version 6.1(2)I2 6.1(2)I2(2a)
Orderable Mar 2014 Jun 2014
SKU N9K-X9564PX N9K-X9464PX

 

10 GE Copper Modules

9564TX 9464TX
Usage End of row and ACI leaf* End of row
Front panel ports 48 x 10 GE + 4 x 40 GE 48 x 10 GE + 4 x 40 GE
Standalone Yes Yes
ACI leaf Yes* No
ACI spine No No
Chassis support 4, 8 and 16 slot 4, 8 and 16 slot
100 M/1 GE/10 GE copper ports 48 48
40 GE ports 4 4
Switching performance Nonblocking Line rate >200 Byte
Buffer (MB) 104 12
Typical power (watts) 450 320
Minimum software version 6.1(2)I2 6.1(2)I2(2a)
Orderable Mar 2014 Jun 2014
SKU N9K-X9564TX N9K-X9464TX

 

Nexus 9300 Fixed Switches

Nexus 9396PX Nexus 9396TX Nexus 93128TX Nexus 9336PQ
Usage ACI leaf, top of rack, FEX aggregation ACI leaf, top of rack, end of row, FEX aggregation ACI leaf, top of rack, end of row, FEX aggregation ACI spine
Form factor 2 RU 2 RU 3 RU 2 RU
Throughput (Tbps) 1.92 1.92 2.56 2.88
100 M/1 GE/10 GE copper ports NA 48 96 NA
10 GE fiber ports 48 NA NA NA
40 GE ports 12 12 8 36
Latency (microseconds) <2 <2 <2 <2
Buffer (MB) 52 52 52 72
Power supply (watts) 2 per switch 650 650 1200 1200
Typical power (watts) 204 432 (1G),
568 (10G BASE-T)
432 (1G),
568 (10G BASE-T)
400
Minimum software version  6.1(2)I1(1) 6.1(2)I1(1) 6.1(2)I2(2a) ACI-N9KDK9-11.0
Orderable Nov 2013 Nov 2013 Nov 2013 Jul 2014
SKU N9K-C9396PX N9K-C9396TX N9K-C93128TX N9K-C9336PQ

*Future Notes: a) Detailed optics support; b) Current software support

 

More Cisco Nexus Switches Topics

Cisco Nexus 9000 Series Switches Overview

Nexus 9000 vs. Nexus 7000

Nexus 7000 and Catalyst 6500 Comparison Guide

Cisco Nexus 3100, Ready to Support VMware NSX?

Cisco Nexus 6000 Switches: High-Density, Compact Form Factor

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