REDPANDA VS KAFKA

Redpanda brings operational simplicity, powerful performance, and cost-efficiency to your Apache Kafka® workloads. Run all your mission-critical data streams with more confidence.

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Complexity

Kafka has extra components like HTTP proxy and schema registry—and software dependencies like the JVM and Apache ZooKeeper™ or KRaft.

Legacy architecture

Kafka was designed to exploit commodity spinning disks and doesn’t take advantage of today’s powerful CPUs, high-performance disks, and networks.

Cost prohibitive

Kafka deployments require infrastructure not just for the brokers, but for the additional components, so costs quickly escalate for large deployments.

BUILT FROM SCRATCH

Redpanda is an Apache Kafka®-compatible streaming data platform designed from the ground up to be lighter, faster, and simpler to operate. Its powerful nature squeezes the most out of today’s cloud infrastructure to give you 10x lower latencies and reduces your total costs by 6x—without sacrificing data safety. Redpanda is available for self-hosted use as Redpanda Platform or as a fully managed service via Redpanda Cloud.

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Compare your options

Organizations increasingly need to harness streaming data to power their event-driven apps, AI/ML models, and real-time analytics use cases. It’s critical to choose the right streaming data platform as a foundation for real-time initiatives.

CapabilityRedpandaApache KafkaDetails
Single binaryGreen check icon.-Kafka is a componentized solution with dependencies on separate nodes/binaries for ZooKeeper/KRaft, JVM, schema registry, and HTTP proxy. Redpanda is a single binary deployment (brokers, schema registry, HTTP proxy, Raft consensus are all included).
Apache Kafka APIsGreen check icon.Green check icon.Redpanda natively supports the Kafka API so it works out-of-the-box with your existing tools and integrations.
Integrated user interfaceGreen check icon.-Redpanda Console is a fully integrated user interface, also compatible with Kafka. With Kafka, must use 3rd party tools like Redpanda Console.
Data and partition balancingGreen check icon.-Redpanda features automatic data and partition balancing, allowing for hands-free ops. With Kafka, you need a 3rd party tool (Cruise Control) for partition and data balancing.
Integrated monitoringGreen check icon.-Redpanda offers monitoring available natively via Prometheus. Kafka requires third party tools.
CapabilityRedpandaApache KafkaDetails
Up to 10x performance of KafkaGreen check icon.-Redpanda achieves 10x lower average latencies vs. Apache Kafka thanks to its optimized performance architecture (built in C++, intelligent memory handling, automatic kernel tuning, async processing, thread-per-core architecture).
Predictable latency at scaleGreen check icon.-Redpanda delivers predictable latency at scale because, unlike Kafka, it bypasses the Linux page cache and manages its own memory and disk I/O.
Optimized resource efficiencyGreen check icon.-Redpanda uses 3-6x fewer compute resources than Apache Kafka when running the same workload.
Tiered storageGreen check icon.-Redpanda features tiered storage to support retention limits and compaction for topics. With Kafka, tiered storage is currently only available via third-party vendors.
CapabilityRedpandaApache KafkaDetails
Reduced TCO vs KafkaGreen check icon.-Redpanda is 3-6x more cost-effective than running the equivalent Kafka infrastructure and team, while still delivering superior performance.
Storage cost-efficiencyGreen check icon.-With Redpanda, S3-compatible cloud storage is the default storage for all streaming data, allowing for near-infinite data retention at a low cost.
Easy Day 2 operationsGreen check icon.-Redpanda automation and intelligent cluster handling eliminates the manual tuning associated with Apache Kafka.
CapabilityRedpanda CloudAmazon MSKDetails
Durabilityiconnot supportedRedpanda Cloud uses Raft-native replication and is Jepsen-verified to be safe for data. MSK uses Apache Kafka ISR for replication, which can be subject to unsafe leader election and data loss.
SLAiconiconBoth services feature a 99.9% uptime SLA.
Data sovereigntyiconiconRedpanda offers BYOC clusters, where data doesn’t leave your VPC, whether in AWS or GCP. In MSK, data doesn’t leave your VPC (limited to AWS)
WHAT'S UNDER THE HOOD?

Simple

Redpanda offers a complete streaming data platform in a single binary, including brokers, HTTP proxy, and schema registry — no JVM, no ZooKeeper or KRaft. And it's easy to get going with Redpanda's dev-friendly console, CLI, and APIs.

Powerful

Redpanda was designed to maximize the performance of modern infrastructure, resulting in 10x lower average latencies vs. Kafka. This is due to innovations like Thread-per-Core architecture, C++ design, and async processing.

Cost Efficient

Redpanda helps reduce your infrastructure spend because it runs on 3x fewer compute resources on average vs Apache Kafka. Redpanda's native S3 storage delivers up to 8-9x savings in long term data retention costs.

Reliable

Redpanda offers reliable data streaming at scale with data safety, thanks to its Raft-based replication. It provides enterprise stability with automatic data and partition balancing.

Ecosystem Support

Redpanda's native Kafka API integrates with the full range of Kafka ecosystem tools. Additionally, Redpanda Cloud offers managed connectors for popular databases, analytics, and storage environments.

HAVE IT YOUR WAY

Your needs are unique, so Redpanda offers different deployment options to suit them, including fully managed Redpanda Cloud Services, a free-to-use Community Edition, and a self-hosted Enterprise Edition.

Redpanda Platform

Deploy Redpanda your own way!

Enterprise Edition

Easy to deploy, easy to develop with, easy to scale. Say goodbye to your Kafka ghosts from the past.

Community Edition

Free to use, with source available under BSL. 

Redpanda Cloud

Fully-managed Redpanda cloud services.

BYOC Clusters

Fully managed Redpanda clusters deployed in your VPC, on your cloud resources. 

Dedicated Clusters

Fully managed Redpanda clusters deployed on Redpanda cloud resources. 

How does it stack up

Comparison Redpanda Kafka ( What is Redpanda )

Performance benchmark

10x faster in tail latencies on 1/3rd the hardware when running at GBps+ speeds.

Jepsen Report

An analysis of our official Jepsen report, including write-write conflicts in the Apache Kafka protocol.

Cost comparison

Redpanda is 1/6th the total costs of Apache Kafka.

InfoWorld review

Redpanda gives Kafka a run for its money!

READY TO START?

Ready to supercharge performance and simplify data pipelines? Give Redpanda a try or get in touch with us to learn more!