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3D graphic artist needs help choosing workstation cpu

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March 3, 2007 11:05:51 AM

Hello , 1st of all i want to say that iam lucky to find this site ( iam noobi hardware guy ) , i work on heavy scenes in 3DsMax and i wanted to make a simple work station with limited budget ..
i will make a dual processors system i want to buy 2 processors that is arround $ 500 each ..
i checked newegg and found those 2 processors :

--- AMD Opteron 2218(WOF) Santa Rosa 2.6GHz Socket F Dual Core Processor Model OSA2218CQWOF - Retail
64 bit Support: Yes
HT: 1000MHz
Hyper-Transport Support: Yes
L1 Cache: 128KB+128KB
L2 Cache: 2 x 1MB
Manufacturing Tech: 90 nm
Multi-Core: Dual-Core
Processors Type: Server
Series: Opteron
Vista Ready: Yes
worth: $525.00

--- Intel Xeon E5320 Clovertown 1.86GHz Socket 771 2U Passive Processor Model BX80563E5345P - Retail
64 bit Support: Yes
FSB: 1066MHz
Hyper-Threading Support: No
L1 Cache: 64KB+64KB
L2 Cache: 2 x 4MB
Manufacturing Tech: 65 nm
Multi-Core: Quad-Core
Processors Type: Server
Series: Xeon
Vista Ready: Yes
worth :$520.00

>> in dual cpu rig the opterons will make total of 4 cores and the xeon onse will make total 8 cores ...

iam kinda confused which one to buy .. please i need advise .. thanx in advance .
March 3, 2007 11:40:13 AM

With the Socket F you will get an equally performing if not slightly better performing Workstation compared to the lower clocked Quad-Core, and one good thing about the Socket F platform your about to choose, you also have a choice of upgrading to 8 Core System within 3-4 Months when "Barcelona" comes out the door which is supposed to be 40% greater than it's Clovertown equivalent (at Equal Clocks). That AMD system seems like a better path to head through IMO, And the Santa Rosa clocked higher vs 1.8Ghz 8 Core seems just about equal in work processing power.
March 3, 2007 12:15:53 PM

I'd say the dual socket F would be a better choice for the immediate future, because with the soon to come Opteron quad cores, you'll be able to have 8 cores running on that thing and that would be better than 8 core2 cores as it seems.
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March 3, 2007 12:36:02 PM

Thanx guys that was really helpfull . i guess i will pick the opterons ..
I checked for suitable MB and i found this one on newegg :

ASUS KFN32-D SLI/SAS Dual Socket 1207 NVIDIA nForce Professional 3600 + 3050 Server Motherboard - Retail

CPU Type: Dual AMD Opteron
DDR2 Standard: DDR2 667
Dual Channel Supported: Yes
ECC Supported: Yes
FSB: 1000MHz Hyper Transport
Maximum Memory Supported: 16GB
Number of DDR2 Slots: 8 x 240Pin
PCI Express x16: 2
PCI Express x8: 1
Registered: Yes
Price : $489.99

My question is would that MB accept DDR2 800 ? and will it work with the coming Opteron Barcelona quad cores ?? and would u suggest another better MB ?
March 3, 2007 12:50:12 PM

No, you'll need ECC RAM, which can run at a max of 667MHz (double pumped).

I'm not too familiar with AMD, but I'm pretty sure that you'll need ECC RAM in Opteron class motherboards.

Intel Xeons use FB-DIMMs.
March 3, 2007 2:14:32 PM

@ m25 >> hmm man what do u mean by that ??? do u mean that dual athlone fx is better than dual opterons for heavy 3D graphic system .. or what !!!!!
if that what u are saying then this will change the whole plan ... feed back plz .. thanx in advance
... Iam glady i cam across this great site .. u guys all are amazing and helpful :) 
March 3, 2007 2:21:32 PM

No, you can install the opterons you wanted there, just as with the previous board, only that this offers the possibility of using much cheaper unregistered RAM and is more graphically capable than a plain server board and it's even $100+ cheaper :wink:
The opterons will be just fine (and there's no need to buy more expensive CPUs like the FX if you will upgrade in few months) but the real fun will begin when you install a pair of K10 CPUs on it :p 
March 3, 2007 5:54:04 PM

Here's the mobo you need:

TYAN S2915A2NRF Dual Socket 1207 NVIDIA nForce Professional 3600 + 3050 Extended ATX Server mobo $380

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

It can be bought as a combo with 4gb of WINTEC Server RAM for $850.

Now if this is to be a graphics workstation may I also suggest:

AMD Opteron 8218 2.6ghz Dual Core CPU $1160 each (dual CPU setup)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

PNY Quadro FX5500 VCQFX 1gb VGA $2400 each (SLI setup)
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

PC Power & Cooling Turbo-Cool 1kw-SR Dual EPS12V Quad SLI PSU $600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Hope this helps!
March 3, 2007 6:55:01 PM

Your suggestion is not bad but he is supposed to upgrade in a few months when Barcelona is out with twice the core count and +70% of performance for each core over the current Opterons and spending $2000+ for a pair of CPUs that are supposed to last 4-5 months is really a sin, too much; he will spend that money much better upgrading to a pair of Barcelona quads when they come out.
!