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High-End Workstation!

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January 11, 2008 4:53:17 PM

I'm currently buying the following heavy-duty workstation for a professor:

SilverStone Tenjim TJ10 (Black with Side Window)
Enermax Galaxy 850W PSU
2x Xeon X5472 3.0Ghz 1600Mhz FSB Quad-Core
16x 1GB Kingston DDR2-800 FB-DIMM
Tyan Tempest i5400PW (S5397) Motherboard
2x Seagate Barracuda 400GB 7200.10 Hard Drives
2x Thermalright HR-01-X
Dedicated nVidia Video Card (something 8x00-based)
Zalman FB-123 Cooling (with a fan holder!)
7x Enermax Marathon 120mm Fan

Pretty nice, huh? :bounce: 

One of the Enermax fans will be placed directly on top of the 16 FB-DIMMs with the Zalman fan holder. The 92mm fan won't be used, I'm buying the FB-123 for the fan holder alone. I think it was the easiest way to cool the memory. Also, I'll replace the stock case fans for these.

What do you guys think?

Also, here's a very important question: which OS should I use? Will, say, Ubuntu 7.10 work out of the box? I couldn't find any more info in Tyan's website... I'm thinking about checking with them, but their support forums seem to be offline right now. I'll try later, but if anyone has any info regarding OS support and has any input to give, I'd appreciate it!

More about : high end workstation

January 11, 2008 5:19:17 PM

Pant, pant, pant...

I havent droled so much since the last time I watched Pam and Tommy.

Have you cheked out the Tyan Tempest i5400PW to make triple and quadrople sure that its BIOS is happy with the Penryns?

Only other queston I have is are you sure tha the 2 x Thermalright HR-01-X will fit side by side? Those sockets look prety damn close to each other!

Also a tiny bit of advice. You're spending huge bux here, so why not spend another $16 on HDs and go with 2 x 500 7200.11s? I think youd be much hapier on a system like this.

Keep us posted on how its goin, as I may jsut decide in the next ten days til WolfieDay to copy you and do:

2x Xeon X5472 3.0Ghz 1600Mhz FSB Quad-Core (might go down to E5420 to save huge bux)
8 GB of Something DDR2-800 FB-DIMM
Tyan Tempest i5400PW (S5397) Motherboard (Id love to find a cheaper one! boo hoo)
Some Seasonic 750 or so PSU
2x Seagate Barracuda 500GB 7200.11 Hard Drives
2x Some big muther HSF that will fit
8800GT
Got a case with 250mm fan in and 2 x 120mm out

All I have to do is rob a few ATMs in the next week and a hafl!

Edit: What are the OC possibilties for the Tyan?
January 11, 2008 7:37:23 PM

all those processing power just to watch porn. a look back at tommy and pam would be sweetest there hehe..

since its a workstation, shouldnt it have the quadros/fireGL?i mean come on, you aint building an F1 car that runs on diesel will you? so as a workstation with gaming GPUS
Related resources
January 11, 2008 10:39:17 PM

I would be very interested in the Penryn certification for the Tyan i5400PW motherboard. Is there another way to derive this info as it does not seem to be listed on the Tyan website?
January 11, 2008 11:02:10 PM

wh3resmycar said:
all those processing power just to watch porn. a look back at tommy and pam would be sweetest there hehe..

since its a workstation, shouldnt it have the quadros/fireGL?i mean come on, you aint building an F1 car that runs on diesel will you? so as a workstation with gaming GPUS


Hey, I want my pron in crystal clear HD! Want to see each bulgng vein!

I cant tell you what the prof is gonna use it for, but for me the 8800GT would be more than fine. I dont game.

Quote:
wow...uall must be made out of money or somthing


Not really. You could confgure a Q9550 system with a really good mobo for about the same money. But this is a octopus! :sol: 

January 11, 2008 11:06:17 PM

Well, there is less info than what I'd like on that i5400PW Motherboard, and that's not only the penryn certification. For instance, I'd really like to know what OS I can definitely run on it. I'm under the impression that any good and latest distro should work, but I'm very afraid that that will not be so.

What I do know from Tyan's website is that (a) this motherboard supports the E5462 Xeon @ 2.8Ghz and (b) this motherboard has been validated to operate with these 1GB DDR2-800 FB-DIMM Kingston modules.

I think that supporting the E5462 is a sign that the other Penryns are supported. As for the memory, that should work flawlessly.

I think I will send a forum message/mail directly to Tyan to ask for OS support and CPU support. After all, this is a brand new motherboard. It's probably the easiest way! The manufacturer should know. Question is, will they take their time to answering all my questions?

As for the quadros/FireGL, this will be a programming workstation, and as such the dedicated 8x00 series video card is just so it can run a little graphics. There will be no serious image editing or 3D model manipulation going on here... All we need is the raw firepower. And there's a lot of it in this machine!!!
January 11, 2008 11:14:00 PM

The statment that the mobo supports the E5462 is really good since I cant see how it would be fine for that but not for the other Harpys. I wish you the best of luck in geting an answer from a mobo manufacturers. I think I'm 0 for 15 lifetime so far. I was wondering why you were going with that specific RAM but this confirms that there is a method to your madnes. :) 

If I do end up geting a somewhat stunted clone of your system the first thing I wanna run on it is Pong. Anyone know if you can download a multithreaded Pong to work on Vista Biz? :) 
January 11, 2008 11:36:23 PM

Oh, and OlSkoolChopper, you asked about the HR-01-X: I don't know about fitting them in a vertical position (wider side oriented like |), but I'm sure they'll fit in a horizontal position (-), which means I'd expect the following setup to be possible:



If a fan was placed on at least one of those (preferably both), there would be a vertical wind tunnel, aided by the air intake that the TJ10 has and the hot air would be exhausted by the 120mm top case fan that is located directly above the two CPU sockets. that would be one good way to cool these CPUs.
January 11, 2008 11:38:48 PM

Yes, there's a method to my madness.

My madness whispers quietly in my ear... "Kingston Part number KVR800D2D8F5/1G, remember...

Also, I was checking about Quadro video cards and I found some at accessible prices. What would be the advantages of getting a quadro series video card instead of, say, a 8800GT?... Anyone has any ideas on that?...

One more thing for those who think this is a lot of money for one mortal like myself: this is not a computer for me. It's for a professor that I'm helping out here and the money for this will be from a research grant. I wish I had the money for this rig though. I think I'd probably throw firefox and a bunch of other apps directly to memory automatically as soon as the OS goes online, and load times would be instantaneous... too bad RAM drives are as expensive as this... drool :sol: 
January 12, 2008 12:11:14 AM

Quadro allows hardware acceleration in professional design programs like those from AutoDesk. The difference it makes in AutoCAD is astounding, my school's P4 setups have hardware acceleration and run as smooth, if not more smooth then my Core2Duo setup that lacks it. If you do work with design programs or image rendering you might want to check if a Quadro or FireGL has acceleration supported by the programming; it can really help!
January 12, 2008 12:12:30 AM

I just sent my OS support question to Tyan. I hope they answer.

Well, I'm fairly certain that RHEL and maybe SuSE Enterprise will be supported. If Ubuntu will work or not is another question though. One thought that crossed my mind is CentOS... which might work. But heck, how should I know???
January 12, 2008 12:26:55 AM

OlSkoolChopper said:
Pant, pant, pant...


yep. nice workstation.
January 12, 2008 12:59:46 AM

The Tyan website at http://www.tyan.com/product_board_detail.aspx?pid=560 states: "The latest Tyan DP server platform supports the 45nm Quad-Core Xeon 5400 series processors and the 5400 chipset (Seaburg). The Tempest i5400PW S5397 features (16) sixteen DDR2 FBDIMM slots, (2) two Gen2 (x16) PCI-E expansion slots that can either support an I/O expansion card or a graphic card; while also supporting front side bus speeds of 1600/1333MHz." It seems that it is 45nm compliant. However, I am not seeing any information with regards to OS compatibility. I don't believe it would be a problem with my application of Vista Ultimate, but it may be with various flavors of Linux, et al.
January 12, 2008 1:47:13 AM

Those HR01Xs look perfectly happy on that board. I'll bet two Tuniq towers wouldnt be anywhere possible on that though! Great idea about the verical wind tunnel. I'll bet that would keep those Harpies at 35C under load! I understand that the Tyan has been certefied to run with that Kingston RAM but would there be any reason to beleive that other similar FBDIMMs would create a problem with that mobo? I wouldnt even consider a Quadro as I dont do any AutoCAD and likely the 3d software Im gonna buy is gonna be more mainstream in nature than specialized workstation type stuff, so it will be perfeclty well suited to working with the 8800GT. Is tehre any way to find out how to OC this sucka? "Ya, I've got an octocore and I've OCd it cuz I NEED MORE POWER!" :) 
January 12, 2008 10:23:37 AM

Yes... it might be a problem with Linux. Hopefully, I'll get my answer from Tyan support...

As for the CPU cooling, keep in mind that socket 771 doesn't have the same square layout for the mounting holes. Instead, the mounting holes form a rectangle. The thermalright retention module for xeons is this one:



And the square one for the desktop socket 775 is this one:



So you cannot use a socket 775 cooler to cool a xeon... Which is why the HR-01-X is so special: it comes with the xeon retention module...
January 12, 2008 1:19:34 PM

Damn! The stuff you learn on this forum is amazing! I had no idea that the 771s had diferent HSF mounts. OK, so HR01X it is. Thanks "Mephistopheles is not your name, But I know what you're up to just the same." :lol: 

OK so now onto OC. Where would I go to see if there is any hardcore dude out there who has OCd this twin socket mobo? :pt1cable: 

Also... just because Im broke until the court gets Turpit to pay up the judgment from the Wolfdale launch date thread, is there any otehr mobo from Tyan or other that woudl do the trick and doesnt cost $550? :( 
January 12, 2008 8:23:50 PM

I've been reviewing several websites and it seems that Supermicro also has a line of well-regarded dual 771 motherboards based on 5400 Seaburg chipsets. Was there a specific reason you chose the Tyan, OP?
January 12, 2008 8:33:34 PM

2x Seagate Barracuda 400GB 7200.10 Hard Drives
Hahahahahah!!! What? no IBM Ultra320 15K drives? come on, man! It's for research!

Your professor might like the Solaris operating system, depending on his background, but knowing academic types, he should. The last time I checked it handled huge loads better than linux as well. Just for the love of god, not ubuntu.
January 12, 2008 9:01:52 PM

Quote:
One more thing for those who think this is a lot of money for one mortal like myself: this is not a computer for me. It's for a professor that I'm helping out here and the money for this will be from a research grant.


Very cool opportunity! /drool

Very cool and smart Professor to have someone like you build the system, as opposed to buying a prebuilt or even barebones.

I get the sense that he might have built it himself if it were not a DP 16GB system. :D 

Silverstone case, Thermalright coolers, packed with good fans, it's been a few years coming but we can finally say we have Dual Quads in our computers instead of in our cars! :lol: 

Please do a work log, pics!!!!

As for overclocking, I have no idea what options are in the bios or how well they work. I can say, though, that these socket 771 DP systems are designed for mission critical workloads, stability is the name of the game. You take a hit in ram performance with ECC ram (if I am not mistaken), for the sake of perfect error free operation. Overclocking the system is defeating that purpose. With these systems, if you want more speed you just buy faster cpus. The cpus are a small cost compared to packing a Chenbro SR110 with 15x large SCSI/SAS hard drives at $600+ a pop. I think we can thank AMD for that, many Xeon parts are at very nice prices these days.

Kingston Value Ram no less! At least even ECC ram prices have come down. Wasn't long ago and 16gig would cost a fortune for ECC.

And Dual Quads in a computer will always cost much, much less, than Dual Quads in a car... depending on the year, make and model you have them in, you could build a cluster of servers lol.


.
January 12, 2008 9:59:40 PM

Operating system will largely depend on exactly what he intends to run on it. Since you are considering Ubuntu, it's safe to say his apps are of linux flavor. What I know about linux I could write on the back of a drivers license. I have trouble enough learning more and more about Windows (and now Vista). For an MS operating system it'll have to be 64bit XP/Vista or Server, to use all that ram.

It'd be great fun indeed, to dual boot it with Mac OSX. Using Parallels to run simutaneously, or Bootcamp as dual boot, what you are putting together can potentially crush the latest Mac Pro.

There simply must be some smaller message forums around, that has decent traffic and specialising in DP workstations and servers. I can imagine this motherboard would have it's own forum, as it is one of the few that will take the latest intel Xeons.

I found this thread because I also have been commisioned to assemble a server of sorts. At this point I am researching the latest tech in this field, and acting as consultant on the matter with a learning institute that I teach part time at. Our requirements are not yet locked down, and it's possible we can get away with even a single core and single processor system -- I've yet to meet with the rep of the company that is gifting us the software and setup. I've always taught that to understand the present one need only study the past, so looking at older tech in this area is just fine and actually been quite enlightening in respect to the changes that this tech has gone through fairly recently. Oh yeah, it's all fun! Oh yeah, one day... our family home server will be a DP board with a crapload of ram and HDs in a sweet case tucked in the corner of my home made rack, LOL.

So any links anyone can post directing us to any forums specialising in this area will be greatly appreciated!

.
January 13, 2008 12:47:44 AM

hewlettpucktard: Actually, the reason for going with Tyan is that it's more widely available here in Brazil. The equivalent motherboard from supermicro would be the X7DWN, and now that I've checked, supermicro is more forthcoming with information about OS support: Fedora 6, 7 and 8 are all supported, which is a big plus. Unfortunately, this is an "Enhanced Extended ATX" motherboard... wonder what that means?... Which one is better: Supermicro or Tyan? Now you got me thinking...

surrealdeal: "It's for research" doesn't equal "all we can get". This is money coming directly from taxes and we spend it with caution. This professor doesn't need heavy HD I/O, but he will make good use of 8 cores @ 3.0Ghz, being that he has already coded quite a few highly parallel number crunchers for physics calculations. For our uses, disk I/O is simply not an issue, and besides, with 16GB of RAM you can juggle huge amounts of data in actual physical memory.

"We are only interested in what we actually need" - shouldn't that be the motto for all computing?... I've seen a few professors saying "I need the (f*cking) best there is in every category! Maximum memory, SCSI hard drives, and whatnot!" Hearing this is very frustrating...

As for solaris, I don't really know about it. I've used some version of solaris for a few minutes back in the 90s (it's funny when you say it like that) but haven't had any contact with it since... I'll look it up.

Lithotech: thanks for sharing my enthusiasm about this! I was really, really considering to do a work log for this. Too bad it'll probably take some 30+ days for all the components to get here... This will be fun!!! A lot of fun!!!

Also, overclocking is completely out of the picture. This is a production environment and people don't like the idea of running out of spec. And you have nailed the reasons for not OCing perfectly: it defeats the purpose of these systems. If you go dual socket, you'll be, in all likelihood, spending much more for memory than for the actual CPUs, so why not go with the latest über-CPU? You've said it all.

You said you're acting as a consultant on the matter? Sounds as if you and I are in a very similar position!
a b à CPUs
January 13, 2008 1:25:39 AM

Mephistopheles said:
This is money coming directly from taxes and we spend it with caution.


Wouldn't you know - government money.

What kind of research does he do and what specifically is he crunching numbers on ? Just curious.
January 13, 2008 12:14:41 PM

Hmmm now you got me.

The professor and I are both physicists, but his research doesn't have a lot to do with what I do. What I do know is that one of his students works with DMFT (Dynamical Mean Field theory) and variations thereof. He has other students that have also had success in paralleizing their programs.

For a list of this professor's recent publications, check out this link.
January 13, 2008 12:38:17 PM

Ya, ive been in a few Mean Fields, usualy while being chased by big ugly muthas with chains and switchblades. :) 

My prmary worry is the $$$ of the system, so Im gonna start checking out the web for other 5400 chipset dual socket 771 mobos. Maybe I can find somethng that will still work with the Harpys and save me a couple of hunderd bux! Any asistance would be apreciated!

January 13, 2008 12:49:26 PM

Supermicro has a few options, but unfortunately there are only very few motherboards supporting the 1600Mhz FSB...

AFAIK, only supermicro's X7DWN and Tyan's i5400PW support these processors...

Damn you apple for monopolizing these high-FSB CPUs!!
January 13, 2008 12:56:02 PM

Thanks for the link Meph. The X7DWA-N seems only to be about $25 more expensve than the X7DWN+ and has twice the RAM sockets. Still, we're pushin $600. However it would seem to me that if I was going on my own system with 1333 FSB, I should be able to pick upa chaeper mobo. Thats too much for my budget unfortenately. :( 
a b à CPUs
January 14, 2008 4:45:38 AM

Mephistopheles said:
For a list of this professor's recent publications, check out this link.


Thanks for the link. I looked at the list ..... and still have no idea what he does. I didn't download any of his articles, figure if I can't understand the titles it won't help me much. I'll wait for the illustrated version to come out.
January 14, 2008 1:26:16 PM

rockyjohn said:
Thanks for the link. I looked at the list ..... and still have no idea what he does. I didn't download any of his articles, figure if I can't understand the titles it won't help me much. I'll wait for the illustrated version to come out.


Dude, Im surprisd you didnt understand that. Its all about the dynamics between mean fields and kind fields. Dang. Easy stuff... :bounce: 
January 15, 2008 1:42:52 PM

Wow, I'm impressed! Tyan support has already given me an answer!!

For anyone interested - and, considering the firepower that this board delivers, there might be quite a few people interested - this is what they told me:

Quote:
Currently, we do not have an official list of operating systems that are supported on this board since it′s so new. However, judging from past experience, it will probably support Windows XP 32/64-bit, Server 2003 32/64-bit, Vista 32/64-bit, as well as the latest versions of RHEL and SuSE. We typically do not do testing with Ubuntu, however, from what I′ve seen on past boards, it usually works without issues.
January 15, 2008 2:06:52 PM

Very nice machine, I want the same for me :p 

The only I can say is that the case is horrible. Get a Thermaltake Armor Xtreme edition, is ALOT nicer has 2 holes for cooling the xeons.

I love this case.
January 15, 2008 2:07:00 PM

Very nice machine, I want the same for me :p 

The only I can say is that the case is horrible. Get a Thermaltake Armor Xtreme edition, is ALOT nicer has 2 holes for cooling the xeons.

I love this case.
January 15, 2008 3:13:08 PM

Well, about the case... The main advantage is that it is readily available, and I've read several reviews. I think it's OK for this purpose. Do you mean horrible in appearance or functionality?...

I have some experience with Thermaltake armor cases (I own one myself!), and from what I've seen, they are good, but not as exceptional as they seem initially.

Silverstone, on the other hand, doesn't cut corners: they would have made the hinges for the two "front doors" on the Armor out of aluminum, not out of plastic. Being as it is, my thermaltake armor's doors sometimes vibrate and create an irritating and unnecessary noise. Also, the two doors don't line up so well when closed: I think one of them was bent during shipping.

Plus, the Thermaltake Armor Xtreme Edition isn't available anywhere in Brazil. If you want to take a look at what's available in the store I'm building, follow this link. This is a list of manufacturers; clicking any one of them will bring up a list of available cases.

Edit: I've just checked and the Armor Xtreme Edition's holes for CPU cooling don't match the position for the Xeon CPUs as seen in Tyan's i5400PW... If I were to buy a TT Armor for this, I think I'd choose the simpler window version, without holes. Looks much prettier, as those two holes make much more sense when they match the motherboard layout anyway... At least that's what I think...
January 15, 2008 4:35:12 PM

Thanks for refering the Tyan support. Good to know that its ok with Vista 64. My sugestion is get an XClio or X-Jupiter with a big mutha of a fan on the side over the mobo. You'll need it. I know I woudl, and Im still considering not going for the E84 and sheling out the bucks for a dual socket 771...
January 15, 2008 6:30:51 PM

Hmmm should I get higher-capacity fans or will these be enough?

After all, the motherboard will have 2x130W for CPUs and 16x10W for FB-DIMMs... this adds up to 260+160=420W of power! That's quite a lot...

I could go with akasa Amber Series 120mm fans (~1400rpm, I think), but they're kinda ugly.

A good option, I think, would be the SilverStone FM123 120mm fans:



They're particularly interesting because each of them comes with a PCI-cover with room for other 2 fans of the same series:



This is very clever. But it's also more than twice as expensive as the Enermax Marathons... What do you guys think?
January 15, 2008 9:10:49 PM

I've never used a fan controler on anything but HI so to me their a waste of time and money. Also keep in mind that you'll likely to hit 420W only if your totaly frying the system.
January 16, 2008 6:06:40 PM

Agreed! The PCI fan controller will sit in the back of the case, completely unused and forgotten about.

The Tyan mobo has SIX 4-pin fan headers that can take 4-pin PWM fans like the Scythe Kama 120MM PWM Fan 300-1200RPM 0-24.9DBA 12-52CFM. You can also jack in 3-pin fans, but the 4-pin PWM fans will spin much slower if set that way, and I am not sure that the board can control regular 3-pin fan speeds. At least, I have run into that many times with 3-pin fans on the CPU fan headers on mainstream boards, the fan speeds won't adjust.

The part number is DFS122512L-PWM. Hopefully you can get these where you are, they are really good fans:

http://www.ncix.com/products/index.php?sku=26269&vpn=DF...

This way you can set the temp tolerances, and the board will adjust the fans automatically.

Using apps like Everest Ultimate or Speedfan to monitor temps and fan speeds, I then use a very slick application called WebTemp to graph this data over time. WebTemp is very cheap to register a license. It is fairly easy to set up, and will email you these charts once a day, and upload them to an FTP site hourly.

Over-fanning a case is a common mistake. It can cause turbulence so bad that you get pockets of hot stagnant air that refuses to exhaust out. I am all for filling all the fan slots, so to avoid stagnant air you simply have to experiment with fan speeds untill you get a nice flow in and out of the case.

Using WebTemp is invaluable for this. You make a change to the tolerances and let the system run for 10-20 minutes -- either load or idle, load is better. Then look at the WebTemp charts and note the maximum temps. Make another change, and let it run a bit and check WebTemp again, you will instantly see if temps went up or down. Rinse and repeat until you are satisfied you have an optimum setting.

This is great for tuning for silence too! Many times you will find that a 2000rpm fan will achieve the same temps at 1200rpm, and not make any noise doing it.

They have a free trial version, which I used for all of one day before returning to register lol!

http://www.webtemp.org/

Here's a chart from my main work system, 8 hour duration:



.
January 16, 2008 10:43:04 PM

Lithotech: thanks for your input! Unfortunately, I'm having dificulties tracking down any 120mm PWM fan! This really sucks. So I think I'll stick with the Enermax Marathons, which, at 1000rpm, probably won't over-fan the system. I'm still considering putting a more powerful intake fan for the midsection. After all, there'll be three fans sucking air out, and only one for the intake: this one could pack a little more punch...

I've been given the alternative of switching to a much cheaper case, the Chieftec BA-01-BBB, which looks like this:



Impressively enough, this costs 30% of the price of the TJ10. But it means a reduction of less than 5% of the system cost and I think it's not worth it: the Tenjim has a top air exhaust that will create my "vertical wind tunnel effect" much better than this chieftec alternative. The Tenjim is equipped with 120mm fans only, and the Chieftec has tons of 92mm ones. And for fans, bigger means better!

Plus, the build quality simply can't be compared. And the Chieftec is just plain ugly! With a huuuuge, pointless space in the upper part of the case (it's 67,5cm tall!)... I mean, just compare the picture above for the chieftec and the Silverstone TJ10:



What do you guys think?... I'm thinking: the system is already maxed out, let's not put it inside an ugly tower like the Chieftec... agreed?...
January 17, 2008 5:41:33 PM

Agreed.

The TJ10 is a large case itself, it looks dwarfed by the Chieftech lol!

The Chieftech is all drive space, which you don't need. No removable mobo tray. 90mm fans can be hard to find. I don't think there is any question... stick with the Silverstone!

As for PWM fans, don't sweat it. If the mobo can't control 3pin fans, just run them at full speed. If you find you need to adjust them, there are plenty of options to do that later, such as one of Silverstone's 3.5" drive bay fan controllers, or Zalman's 5.25" fan controller.

It's always best to have more exhaust than intake, creates a low pressure situation in the case which will reduce or eliminate stagnant air.

Silverstone's fans are pretty good too. I'd use what they give you with the case, and only replace the rear exhaust with a faster fan of good quality, then fill up any empty slots with the 1000rpm fans you planned. That'll leave you with a spare which is always handy.

Silverstone cuts out the hole for fans instead of leaving a grated honeycomb pattern as a guard. It makes a hell of a difference, no restriction for air except the chrome finger guard. In a TJ04 I just put together, I put an Antec Tri-Cool LED in that slot and the amount of air being pushed out of the case is amazing! It also added a bit of light to the case, which it really needed because it has a window. The Antec fans are cheap for an 80CFM fan, come with a 3 position switch, and at low or medium speed they are very quiet. At high speed they make a humm-whoosh sound. I leave them on medium most of the time, and use low speed for silence, high speed for overclocking. At high speed it pushes so much air out of the case that you can barely feel any air out of the PSU. In fact, on another system that I cut the grating out myself, it seems the PSU is sucking air in! That system's PSU has a slow 120mm fan, but still, to have the exhaust so powerful as to make the PSU fan work backwards... needless to say, the fan stays on low or medium in that system.

Fans are easily added or changed later, so it's not something that has to be completely decided upon or finalized before assembling the system. You can confidently assemble the whole system with just the fans that come with the case, and after getting it up and running and have all the monitoring software in place before starting to optimize the airflow with extra fans or swapping fans.

.

January 17, 2008 7:38:39 PM

Get adequate cooling...that's my suggestion

I work on an octocore machine at work (2x Xeon 2.66ghz quads)

Now I know the Xeons can get hotter than Intel's Core 2 Quads etc...but I wonder when they start to throttle their speed down (if they do)

I ran Prime95 @ work 4 sh*ts an giggles...all 8 cores were above 80c in under 5 minutes....

And yes running a render in XSI or Maya will pretty much load up your cpu 100% so that is an issue for some.

I don't have any stability issues though...FYI the cores idle at around 50-55c...crazy.
January 17, 2008 9:52:47 PM

Thanks for your input, lithotech. You are right! Fans are not a critical decision for this build right now. We can always change that later if need be.

Also, supremelaw: I was wondering wether or not to mount that Enermax Galaxy with the 135mm fan sucking air from the inside of the case or from the bottom. There is the possibility that this computer will stay on the floor, which wouldn't be good... But that's a decision I can comfortably make later.

Actually, Tyan does recommend a few cases! They list three cases, and they're all pretty wind-tunnel oriented, although they lack the high number of case fans of state-of-the-art cases from, say, Silverstone. Take a look at the smallest of them, it's in this link. The other ones are: case ONE and case TWO. They're both much bigger than the image shown here, and their build quality isn't quite as tidy as Silverstone's. They're "down-to-business" cases. I have the feeling that the TJ10 can do pretty much anything these chenbros can, and still be better-cooled and much more stylish! TJ10 all the way! :sol: 

Edit: supremelaw beat me to these pictures, sorry. But my conclusion still stands: these chenbros aren't that great...
January 17, 2008 10:00:46 PM

plasticsashimi: These Xeons will generate 130W of heat, but I think I'm safe with those two thermalright supercoolers. If cooling is inadequate, I can always get more powerful fans: if these supercoolers and good airflow don't get this below 60C in 800% CPU usage, then I don't what will.
January 18, 2008 11:45:38 AM

Well, actually, I had seen the ASUS motherboard based on the previous chipset (support only for 1333Mhz and 53xx xeons). What I particularly like is the easy memory cooling ability. To offset that, I used that Zalman FB123:



This, with a 120mm fan (92mm shown), blowing air directly over the FB-DIMMs, should also provide sufficient cooling... I think. And it's always better to use one 120mm instead of two 80mms... According to my math, the 16 slots on the Tyan should cover a length of roughly 14 or 15cm. It's sad that I couldn't find a 14cm fan. Would have been cool... :( 

Although I must say that buying the ASUS board would be easier. However, it has just been launched, and it should take a while until it's available. Also, Tyan is a company of good reputation, AFAIK.
January 18, 2008 11:46:16 AM

Any idea how much this mobos gonna cost? I really need a twin socket 771 45nm board that I can pick up in the $300s... all the ones being discussed here are pushing $600 at the discount etailers! I hate bein poor! BWAHAHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
a b à CPUs
January 18, 2008 6:27:09 PM

For your cooling problem....not sure if it will work because it is a 2P motherboard, but liquid cooling seems to be the best choice in that system.
January 18, 2008 6:52:22 PM

for a workstation card the new fireGL series of cards have proven to be more powerful than the 8800 based workstation cards. thats all i have to say, prolly been said, but im too lazy to read right now...nap time
January 19, 2008 3:53:52 AM

Quote:
We've found 3 cases with room for two PSUs:
Lian-Li, Antec and Cooler Master.

Also, we now prefer to situate a PSU
at the case's bottom rear, e.g. CM 690,
with an intake grill in the case's bottom panel:

cold air falls, so this arrangement feeds
the coolest air into the PSU, which exhausts
heated air straight out the rear panel.


Does Tyan recommend any particular cases
for that motherboard e.g. compatibility lists and such?


Yeah, I sort of noticed on Tyan's site that they tend to recommend Chenbro cases. I think there was a model or two of Chenbro's that I liked, and fell in the $350 range. For $350, you get a fairly plain case but with the ability to add a lot of nice optional parts which run around $100 a pop. You can quickly and easily run up a $600-800 bill. Most of these extras are to do with hotswap storage etc, not something everyone needs.

At $350 to start, you can buy a HELL of a lot of case when looking at mainstream cases. The E-ATX mobo requirement narrows down the search a lot. My preference in this range with E-ATX is that it have a removable mobo tray. The Silverston TJ10 has one, the Cooler Master Stacker 830 does, some of Thermaltakes higher end aluminum like the Shark, Lian-Li, yadda.

/edit: Lian-Li's build quality is second to none. Haven't seen anything near it since the old Cooler Master WaveMasters. There was a new item in stock a few weeks back, they were saying was even better than Lian-Li, I'll report back if I remember the name of it. The Chenbro's, plain as they are, look like they's be plenty fun to work with and appearance is quite nice to my eyes. One day, I think I'd very much like to have an SR-109 (106, 107, or 108 even), they all take a regular size PSU, the SR-110 takes the slim redundant server unit that must cost a small fortune. :lol:  Yep, the SR-109 and a nice PC P&P 750Quad PSU... /sigh

The PSU on the bottom of the case is a two edged sword.

1) It makes it difficult to achieve clean cable management, and downright impossible unless you have a high quality PSU with proper long cables. Since you will need, at the least, a PSU with an EPS 8-pin connector, that pretty much eliminated any low or average quality PSU's, you should be safe as far as line length. It's still near impossible to have perfect cable management, but optimal is easy and will do (if you define that as no obstructions and nothing visible unless there is no other choice).

2) For dual nForce 8800GTX vid cards in SLI, a bottom mounted PSU is a benefit, because these cards take two PCI-e 6-pin cables each, that's 4 fairly heavy lines you do not have to run from the top of the case down to the bottom. In fact, the only problem is what to do with all the extra cable.

3) Sure, heat rises. The PSU is also one of the hotter devices in a case, so it'll be radiating heat up past the vid card(s), NorthBridge, RAM and CPU on it's way out the top increasing all your temps across the board. That is why Antec's P180 has isolated the PSU in it's own chamber at the bottom of the case, and some Lian-Li's do the same.

4) The PSU doesn't need the coolest air, they have their own (hefty in good ones) heatsinks inside, and the capacitors are the largest (and with the highest ratings) in your system.

5) The PSU can very nicely act as system exhaust. The trend of 120mm fans in many good units, and the fact that it is often situated directly about the CPU socket, makes it perfectly suited for this. At the very least, allowing you to slow down the other exhaust without sacrificing temperature.

Of these examples, number 1 and 3 is probably the most concern for me. I have my main work system in a P180, got one when they first came out. I call it The Fridge. I still love it, regardless of the time an effort it took to get the cables clean enough to not drive me crazy. And it is not affected by the PSU heat rising, the chambers work great.

But I doubt I will even buy another bottom PSU case for myself. I may go through a couple or few Cooler Master 690's for other people's builds as it is a very good case for the cost. But for myself, not again. This is exactly why I occasionally buy new innovative products, not just so that I have one but to learn from experience these issues you encounter from use. To me, it is still very cheap education, and I've never had trouble selling parts that I decide I don't want. I price them cheaper than I paid, the difference being an expense I catagorise as educational. The things I learn you can't go to school for, and the things I go to school for cost a lot more per course than computer parts.

I much prefer a top mounted PSU. All the mobos are designed for it. When I find a mobo with the main power connectors at the bootom of the board, I'll then consider a case with a bottom mounted PSU.

Here is a link to a bit of a work log I did on my P180, experimentation with fans!

http://www.esnips.com/web/P180DuctReplacementMod/

.
January 19, 2008 4:24:09 AM

PlasticSashimi said:
Get adequate cooling...that's my suggestion

I work on an octocore machine at work (2x Xeon 2.66ghz quads)

Now I know the Xeons can get hotter than Intel's Core 2 Quads etc...but I wonder when they start to throttle their speed down (if they do)

I ran Prime95 @ work 4 sh*ts an giggles...all 8 cores were above 80c in under 5 minutes....

And yes running a render in XSI or Maya will pretty much load up your cpu 100% so that is an issue for some.

I don't have any stability issues though...FYI the cores idle at around 50-55c...crazy.


That with stock Intel coolers? If so, it'd sound about right. The Thermalrights should knock a good 10 degrees off idle, and more off load. They are not supposed to throttle till around 100C, I still don't like to see them above 70C when load testing an overclock. Yikes! If they are stock coolers, no suprise I guess.


January 19, 2008 11:04:03 AM

There are a few questions you need to ask yourself before committing to anything:


What exactly are you building the workstation for?

Bespoke coding or commerical? Are there workbenches out there of a similar ilk? (Because in some situations, a 2 GHz Barcelona chip will spank an X5365)

What kinda memory throughout will it need? With 2 sockets, the Intel FSB can clog up quickly.



Also, the newer ATI FireGL graphics cards have the same performance at half the price as the NVidia quadros.



I have scientific linux on my machine, its a free distro that is Red Hat enterprise compatible - which is what the majority of scientific commercial linux codes will be (or should I say will require).
January 19, 2008 12:34:29 PM

rockyjohn said:
Wouldn't you know - government money.
Where do you think "government money" comes from?
January 20, 2008 6:05:43 AM

nhobo said:
Where do you think "government money" comes from?


The goverment prints it! :pt1cable: 
!