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High-end workstation: i7-3930K or Dual xeon? AMD Firepro V7900 + Gaming Card with Cuda cores?

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  • firepro
  • Workstations
  • Quadro
  • CPUs
  • Xeon
  • Build
  • Graphics
  • Intel i7
  • Systems
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April 9, 2013 6:00:58 AM

At this point, I am overwhelmed with the choices and researched information.

I had almost decided to go with the build based on burritobob's winning build with some great inputs from zrobbb at my previous post: http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-1644354/high-end...), before I read many 'i7-3930K vs dual xeons' and 'firepro vs quadro' articles.

I would like some second opinions from you pros:

1) Are 'two' E52645 Xeons (eight cores) powerful and sturdier than a 'single' i7-3930K(six core)? If so, what build would be apt for a $3000+ budget (two xeons+supermicro mobo as in gkay09's winning build?)?

2) Would it be a possible to substitute one Firepro Card with a gaming card for getting the 'cuda core benefit'?

3) Expensive Quadro 4000 or comparatively affordable Firepro? If the Quadro advantage is simply cuda cores (and compatibility with 3ds max which is not on top of my list), will a GTX 680 suffice?

Suggestions to better the rig are welcome.

Thanks and Regards.

More about : high end workstation 3930k dual xeon amd firepro v7900 gaming card cuda cores

April 9, 2013 8:21:41 AM

Dont know much about workstation gpu's but why not choose the gtx titan.
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April 9, 2013 8:27:00 AM

What type of workstation usage are we talking about here. specific programs
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April 9, 2013 9:18:33 AM

You can only use one card or the other, you cannot use both. The reason is because of driver conflicts between the two cards would cause some major system instability. Now if you want to use a Fire Pro only this article gives you a good idea of how workstation cards play games: http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/workstation-graphic...
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April 9, 2013 9:57:40 AM

SuperGamerBoy said:
Dont know much about workstation gpu's but why not choose the gtx titan.


I am looking for a 'all-round card' to run applications like 3d applications like Maya, photo-editing, and video-editing.
Don't know how efficient the Titan is as a 3d workstation GPU.
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April 9, 2013 10:01:35 AM

bikeordie1 said:
What type of workstation usage are we talking about here. specific programs


3D applications like Maya and Zbrush. Photoshop, After Effects.
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April 9, 2013 10:08:00 AM

g-unit1111 said:
You can only use one card or the other ...

Thanks for the info on driver conflicts. I want this rig to be the best possible for purely for 3D programs, fast rendering, and video editing.
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Best solution

April 9, 2013 12:14:51 PM

Defiantly go Nvidia on this one for CUDA. A Titan isn't a bad choice but something like a K4000 would be a better option. and $200 cheaper at that. My dual Quadro 3700's do pretty well and a single k4000 would be well above that.
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April 9, 2013 12:19:01 PM

bikeordie1 said:
Defiantly go Nvidia on this one for CUDA. A Titan isn't a bad choice but something like a K4000 would be a better option. and $200 cheaper at that. My dual Quadro 3700's do pretty well and a single k4000 would be well above that.


Yeah but the K5000 alone retails for $1700, the Fire Pro V7900 is a far better value for rendering and editing.
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April 9, 2013 9:23:04 PM

bikeordie1 said:
Defiantly go Nvidia on this one for CUDA...

bikeordie1, thanks a ton. K4000 is news to me. more promising than the 4000, but not SLI is it? Are there any advantages of using two quadro K4000s? Will the software use all cuda cores? Kindly advice for the config around the K4000 for $3000 sans the monitor and peripherals. (...on the other hand could burn 3400$ for fast rendering)
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April 9, 2013 9:42:18 PM

g-unit1111 said:
...the Fire Pro V7900 is a far better value for rendering and editing.

I agree, the pros of the Firepro V7900 definitely is better value for money, but software by Adobe will benefit from the cuda cores of a Quadro? I hope the benefits are not marginal for the money at stake. Moreover the Firepro excels over Quadro at Maya or so I have read, but I am looking for an all-rounder card and a fast rendering rig if possible. Recommendations for the rig around the V7900 are most welcome.
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April 10, 2013 7:32:09 AM

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i7-3960X Extreme Edition 3.3GHz 6-Core Processor ($983.98 @ SuperBiiz)
CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.98 @ Outlet PC)
Motherboard: ASRock X79 Extreme4 ATX LGA2011 Motherboard ($209.99 @ Amazon)
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 16GB (4 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($104.98 @ Amazon)
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($89.99 @ NCIX US)
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($214.99 @ NCIX US)
Case: Corsair 300R ATX Mid Tower Case ($59.99 @ Microcenter)
Power Supply: Corsair Builder 600W ATX12V Power Supply ($74.99 @ Best Buy)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($17.99 @ Newegg)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Professional SP1 (OEM) (64-bit) ($135.98 @ Amazon)
Total: $1922.86
(Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2013-04-10 10:31 EDT-0400)

This is what i would do if i were you. plus a k4000 for about $800. I'm a believer in Nvidia myself
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April 10, 2013 9:29:58 AM

mental2013 said:
g-unit1111 said:
...the Fire Pro V7900 is a far better value for rendering and editing.

I agree, the pros of the Firepro V7900 definitely is better value for money, but software by Adobe will benefit from the cuda cores of a Quadro? I hope the benefits are not marginal for the money at stake. Moreover the Firepro excels over Quadro at Maya or so I have read, but I am looking for an all-rounder card and a fast rendering rig if possible. Recommendations for the rig around the V7900 are most welcome.


Yeah you will benefit from the CUDA cores but overall you're paying a 2X - 3X premium for them over the Fire Pro V7900. The 7900 retails for $829 where the K5000 retails for over $1700 alone. The older Quaddros are based on the outdated 4XX series and are old, slow power hogs.
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April 10, 2013 10:12:59 AM

All factors considered, I think I will go for the Firepro V7900.

I am not against Nvidia, but apart from being costly, (as per my limited knowledge) I believe it has earned its reputation because some major software manufacturers have been developed around Cuda and not OpenCL. After reading this: http://www.fireprographics.com/adobe/ I believe things are changing. AMD products are priced far more reasonably.
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April 10, 2013 11:14:41 AM

I hope 'burritobob's rig' is the best for Firepro?
What mobo and power supply should I go for?

CPU: Intel Core i7-3930K 3.2GHz 6-Core Processor
Motherboard: Asus Rampage IV Gene Micro ATX LGA2011 Motherboard
Memory: Corsair Vengeance 32GB (4 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory
Storage: Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive
Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($249.79 @ DirectCanada)
Video Card: Two ATI FirePro V7900 2GB Video Cards (2-Way CrossFire)
Power Supply: Cooler Master Silent Pro Gold 1000W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($189.99 @ Canada Computers)
Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer
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