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Intel Xeon x5650 vs. w3680 ?

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June 9, 2010 5:28:28 PM

Hello,
I was wondering which you think is better:

W3680 6.4 GT/s 12MB 3.33 GHz 3.6 GHz 130 W 6 12

or:

X5650 6.4 GT/s 12MB 2.66 GHz 3.06 GHz 95 W 6 12


I want to take advantage of the 1333 mhz memory (thus sticking to the 6.4 GT/s processors), and the clock speed for the 3600 xeon is higher.

But I don't understand why the 3680 is still a 3600 series? What makes it a weaker chip?

More about : intel xeon x5650 w3680

June 9, 2010 5:37:48 PM

Just to clarify, here is a better comparison table than what got rendered above:

  1. proc# qpi speed L3 cache base freq max freq power #cores #threads
  2. W3680 6.4 GT/s 12MB 3.33 GHz 3.6 GHz 130W 6 12
  3. X5650 6.4 GT/s 12MB 2.66 GHz 3.06 GHz 95 W 6 12

Also, both use the 32nm technology apparently.

So what are the differences?
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June 9, 2010 5:39:45 PM

Oh and I do heavy CAD work, heavy software development, and some gaming.
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June 9, 2010 6:07:01 PM

Its not that the 3680 is a weaker chip in fact the W3680 will be faster then the X5650. What sets the two chips apart is that the W3680 can only be used in a single CPU configuration with up to 24GB of memory. The X5650 can be used in dual CPU configuration and can handle a lot more memory up to 288GB of memory so that is what mainly sets them apart.

The W3680 is more of a workstation CPU which is what you want for your needs the X5650 is more of a server chip designed to handle large amounts of memory and be low powered.
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June 9, 2010 6:34:10 PM

Thank you very much for the reply; that makes sense. I would not be interested in upgrading to 2 processors ever, so I agree with your assessment.

That said, perhaps I should look at the equivalent i7 Gulftown processor? At the link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulftown_%28microprocessor...

It shows the Core i7-9xx as being the same architecture. Is it true that the ONLY difference between the Xeon 36xx and the i7-9xx the ECC memory? And I don't see how ECC memory would help me at all. (Or could it?) Or would I be sacrificing memory speed or bus speed?

Should I simply be looking at the i7-9xx? Or does the Xeon 36xx buy me something?
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a c 133 à CPUs
June 9, 2010 6:44:09 PM

Well I would say just get the 980X ECC memory will be slightly slower and unless you plan on using more then lets say 12GB's of memory ECC is not needed not to mention the fact that ECC memory is very expensive. ECC only helps when using lots of RAM but for your needs I would say you dont need it. The other difference with Xeons is that they usually use a higher grade of silicon.
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June 9, 2010 7:57:36 PM

Thanks again for the info.

Any recommendations on where to buy a customized workstation that uses this chip? All I can find right now is the Alienware section on the Dell website.... do they put together good computers for professional use?
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a c 133 à CPUs
June 9, 2010 8:08:02 PM

dano_th said:
Thanks again for the info.

Any recommendations on where to buy a customized workstation that uses this chip? All I can find right now is the Alienware section on the Dell website.... do they put together good computers for professional use?

You would be best off building the system yourself its not hard and you will be able to get much higher quality parts for around the same price that dell would charge you.
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June 16, 2010 12:05:23 AM

Best answer selected by dano_th.
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July 8, 2010 10:09:48 AM

saaiello said:
Well I would say just get the 980X ECC memory will be slightly slower and unless you plan on using more then lets say 12GB's of memory ECC is not needed not to mention the fact that ECC memory is very expensive. ECC only helps when using lots of RAM but for your needs I would say you dont need it. The other difference with Xeons is that they usually use a higher grade of silicon.



Wrong. Single bit errors are quite common and unbuffered ECC memory is not much more expensive than non-ECC.

Without ECC you get no error detection and you will over time cause issues and corruption. EETimes did a survey and found a large number of crashes on computers without ECC can be attributed to single bit errors.

Anyone who is anti ECC in the computing field is a psychopath. Would you want a flight computer in a commercial airliner with or without ECC? That's what I thought.


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July 27, 2010 5:29:30 AM

I've been looking in this CPU space too and noted that the W3680 handles memory speed of 800, 1066 and 1333 whereas the Core i7-980X only does 1066. So ECC/non-ECC isn't the only difference.
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