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Opinions on best hardware for Opteron build

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March 16, 2006 9:56:19 PM

I recently acquired an AMD Opteron 2.6 for free. Best system board and heatsink/fan for this processor??? Any opinions greatly appreciated.
March 16, 2006 10:00:45 PM

It would be nice to know if this is a Opteron 1xx, 2xx, etc. That would help determine the type of motherboard you can get especially whether it is S939 or S940.
March 16, 2006 10:02:41 PM

Model 252
2.6
OSP252FAA5BL
Socket 940
Related resources
March 17, 2006 1:11:46 AM

I agree and I too would recommend the Tyan S2895A2NRF

You will need a case that can accomodate that board an EPS12 PSU and 184pin REG ECC PC3200 DDR SDRAM.

If you are looking for something cheaper check out:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.asp?Submit=EN...

You will still need an EPS12 PSU and 184pin REG ECC PC3200 DDR SDRAM regardless of motherboard.

Keep in mind some of these boards are 12"x13" and require a 12"x13" EATX case but watch out some boards ( including the S2895) are SSI EEB 3.0.
March 17, 2006 2:38:09 AM

Check out:
http://www.tyan.com/products/html/opteron.html

Their two most recent boards for that line are:
http://www.tyan.com/products/html/thunderk8hm.html
http://www.tyan.com/products/html/thunderk8hr.html

You might be able to get a board with very similar performance to the Tyan Thunder K8WE (S2895) but at a much lower cost now. (Not to be confused with the Tyan Tiger K8WE (S2877) board)

Still nForce Pro 2200 + 2050 was the first true dual PCIe x16 chipset :p , out well before all the other nForce 4 ones :p .... but that doesn't make that much difference, it is the other features that do. (eg: Aggregate memory performance between 2 processors).

A 2nd Opteron 200 series CPU (single core like what you have now) will not cost you very much at all. :) 

No doubt all the chipsets and price ranges will sway you, just fire me a PM (Private Msg) or é-mail me, or MSN me. (My details are in my profile and in contact section of my very dodgy website - see my signature).
March 17, 2006 12:11:29 PM

Thanks for all the input. It looks like a Tyan. I saw an Asus board but it only had 1 PCI E slot. Any ideas on a case to contain this monster??
March 17, 2006 1:16:39 PM

CASE: Antec Titan 550

http://www.antec.com/us/productDetails.php?ProdID=91550

- If you check the dimentions you'll notice why, make sure to hook up SATA cables, etc before installing the board, or you'll have trouble connecting the HDDs, etc later.

PSU: Any decent EPS12V of 500+ watts should cover it for awhile. eg: The Antec TruePower II 550 EPS12V that comes with the Titan 550 case. :p 

EPS12V is basically a 'server' varient of ATX12V, and should usually, today, include a 8-pin connector for CPU power (2 x 4 pins). Aswell as a 24 pin EPS12V connector. (1 pin has a different function when compared to ATX12V).

Anandtech did report issues with it, but I've never been able to recreate them myself. They prob just got a dud-PSU or pushed it over the edge using nTune to overclock or something. Either way.... they didn't compare 10 of a given PSU to 10 of another PSU.
March 17, 2006 2:39:11 PM

I was looking at the following case

http://www.zipzoomfly.com/jsp/ProductDetail.jsp?Product...




Interesting design. System board is inverted from normal position. drives and PSU sit near the top of the case and the processors at the bottom with a wind tunnel effect. I was going to use Zalman CNPS9500 on the processors. I was going to use this case with the Antec PSU.
March 17, 2006 3:40:43 PM

Doesn't look bad :-D

Just make sure you get a quality EPS12 PSU (Antec, PC Power & Cooling, etc) and verify that the case can in fact accomodate an SSI EEB board if you in fact get the S2895A2NRF.

Good luck :-D
March 17, 2006 4:30:41 PM

The stock Opteron cooler is different from the stock Athlon 64 cooler (at least on the 64 3200).

I am not sure if your 'desired' heatsink will be able to be attached to the board to be honest... but once you see the Opteron cooler with the heatpipes you may change your mind.

I've changed the fans on mine to Panasonic 80mm (using a funnel to get 80mm to 70mm fit). They are known by the PanFlo or PanaFlo name in the industry. Fairly quiet compared to the stock fan, with similar CFM movement.

The CPUs come with HSF anyway, so get them and the board in, then see if your can install the HSF you want afterwards.

http://www.silentpcreview.com - might have some useful info in that respect.
March 18, 2006 11:56:06 PM

It doesnt need to be flashy at all. The way my desk is, you only see the DVD drives anyway. I definately need handles on the case or need to install a kit. The full towers are heavy.
March 20, 2006 11:50:46 AM

I added up the cost of building this. It's cheaper to just buy an OEM box. I might just wait until the prices drop a bit.
March 20, 2006 12:26:24 PM

Quote:
I added up the cost of building this. It's cheaper to just buy an OEM box. I might just wait until the prices drop a bit.



Well a 940 board will cost you $220-$450 http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.asp?Submit=EN...

PSU $90 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

CASE $55 http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

VGA $0 for onboard or $40 - $299 for a 6200 PCI-Express thru 7900GT

RAM $278 for XMS http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...

OR

RAM $220 for VS http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1682...


You can certainly run it with only one CPU until you're ready to upgrade it.
March 20, 2006 4:23:38 PM

That case you mentioned doesnt play nice with EATX boards. I can get a discount on Kingston memory. Im just trying to keep to a certain $ amount. I should be able to build it in the coming months.
March 20, 2006 9:32:53 PM

Quote:
That case you mentioned doesnt play nice with EATX boards. I can get a discount on Kingston memory. Im just trying to keep to a certain $ amount. I should be able to build it in the coming months.



I selected the cheapest case that would ( probably ) do the job. I'm sorry to say even $1000 rackmount cases sometimes do not work that well for some EATX and SSI EEB server boards.

I got burnt before even after doing extensive research.
March 21, 2006 5:52:02 PM

I found the case and PSU. The sysboard is still a toss up between ASUS and TYAN. Kingston ECC and Zalman coolers. I have the rest of the hardware.
March 21, 2006 9:31:14 PM

Quote:
I found the case and PSU. The sysboard is still a toss up between ASUS and TYAN. Kingston ECC and Zalman coolers. I have the rest of the hardware.




I would recommend TYAN, Corsair REG ECC and a Zalman copper cooler ( s ).
March 23, 2006 3:50:41 PM

Anyone have any experience in overclocking opterons?? It would be 2 252 processors.
March 23, 2006 4:14:22 PM

Quote:
Anyone have any experience in overclocking opterons?? It would be 2 252 processors.



I have built several Opteron 2xx machines but to be honest I have never OC'ed them.
March 23, 2006 5:31:26 PM

Which distro of Linux do you prefer??
March 23, 2006 7:04:45 PM

Quote:
Which distro of Linux do you prefer??



I like / use all distros and like all forms of Unix.

I normally use FC4 x86_64 ( FC5 was released a few days ago ).

But I almost always install things from source and tweak everything.
!