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Help me choose a system for data analysis with MATLAB

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Anonymous
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June 29, 2010 9:20:57 AM

Hello friends,

I'm a scientist that needs a hard core number crunching machine. I primarily use MATLAB for doing time-frequency decomposition of neuronal data. I was hoping to keep a budget of between £1500-2000. Here are more choices:

1) Do I go with a core i7 machine with an hd 5870 1GB video card and 12GB of DDR3 1333MHz RAM

http://www.arbico.co.uk/Arbico-Elite-9587-HSD-PC-Adviso...

2) Or do I go with a Dell T7500 workstation with dual Xeon E5620, 12GB DDR3 1066MHz ECC-RAM and 1GB ATI FirePro V5800.

I don't understand workstation video card technology very well but the gaming video cards such as the HD 5870 always max out at the top of benchmarking charts. The workstation video cards that Dell offers appear to be only midrange.

The one upside of going with the Dell is that I could also add the NVIDIA Tesla C1060 PCI card to add another 240 thread processors (at an additional £700 for the card).

If anyone has any advice I would appreciate it, especially with respect to workstation video cards (if you recommend something other than the V5800 that won't break the bank).

Cheers!
a b à CPUs
a b U Graphics card
June 29, 2010 10:03:26 AM

I've used Matlab quite extensively, but never on a multi-core machine with a monster GPU. The questions that need answering before you spend a huge amount of money are:

a) Does Matlab support multi-threading properly, i.e. will it run better on four cores than on two and better on six than on four?
b) How GPU dependant is your simulation?

a b à CPUs
a c 189 U Graphics card
June 29, 2010 11:57:17 AM

AS far as i know, MATLAB is not a GPU demanding, as long as you have a great CPU then you'll be good. :) 
!