Selecting the Instance Type for DLAMI - Deep Learning AMI

Selecting the Instance Type for DLAMI

See the AWS Deep Learning AMI Catalog for recommended Amazon EC2 instance families that are compatible with specific DLAMIs.

More generally, consider the following when selecting an instance type for a DLAMI.

  • If you're new to deep learning, then an instance with a single GPU might suit your needs.

  • If you're budget conscious, then you can use CPU-only instances.

  • If you're looking to optimize high performance and cost efficiency for deep learning model inference, then you can use instances with AWS Inferentia chips.

  • If you're looking to optimize high performance and cost efficiency for deep learning model training, then you can use instances with Habana accelerators.

  • If you're looking for a high performance GPU instance with an Arm-based CPU architecture, then you can use the G5g instance type.

  • If you're interested in running a pretrained model for inference and predictions, then you can attach an Amazon Elastic Inference to your Amazon EC2 instance. Amazon Elastic Inference gives you access to an accelerator with a fraction of a GPU.

  • For high-volume inference services, a single CPU instance with a lot of memory, or a cluster of such instances, might be a better solution.

  • If you're using a large model with a lot of data or a high batch size, then you need a larger instance with more memory. You can also distribute your model to a cluster of GPUs. You may find that using an instance with less memory is a better solution for you if you decrease your batch size. This may impact your accuracy and training speed.

  • If you’re interested in running machine learning applications using NVIDIA Collective Communications Library (NCCL) requiring high levels of inter-node communications at scale, you might want to use Elastic Fabric Adapter (EFA).

For more detail on instances, see EC2 Instance Types.

The following topics provide information about instance type considerations.


The Deep Learning AMIs include drivers, software, or toolkits developed, owned, or provided by NVIDIA Corporation. You agree to use these NVIDIA drivers, software, or toolkits only on Amazon EC2 instances that include NVIDIA hardware.

Pricing for the DLAMI

The deep learning frameworks included in the DLAMI are free, and each has its own open-source licenses. Although the software included in the DLAMI is free, you still have to pay for the underlying Amazon EC2 instance hardware.

Some Amazon EC2 instance types are labeled as free. It is possible to run the DLAMI on one of these free instances. This means that using the DLAMI is entirely free when you only use that instance's capacity. If you need a more powerful instance with more CPU cores, more disk space, more RAM, or one or more GPUs, then you need an instance that is not in the free-tier instance class.

For more information about instance selection and pricing, see Amazon EC2 pricing.

DLAMI Region Availability

Each Region supports a different range of instance types and often an instance type has a slightly different cost in different Regions. DLAMIs are not available in every Region, but it is possible to copy DLAMIs to the Region of your choice. See Copying an AMI for more information. Note the Region selection list and be sure you pick a Region that's close to you or your customers. If you plan to use more than one DLAMI and potentially create a cluster, be sure to use the same Region for all of nodes in the cluster.

For a more info on Regions, visit EC2 Regions.

Next Up

Recommended GPU Instances