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Z68 chipset - Logix virtu feature and rear panel video output

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June 30, 2011 2:41:05 PM

There're many motherboards with the z68 chipset and without a rear panel video output (VGA, HDMI, DVI).

I've been reading about the Logix virtu feature, and it said it allows you to use both the GPU included in second generation i7 processors and the discrete card, but that you needed to connect the monitor to the onboard video output.

Due to the existence of these motherboards without a video output onboard, I gotta ask.

Is it possible to connect the monitor to the discrete card output and still use the virtu feature to use both the discrete card and the GPU in the i7 processor?

Thanks!
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EDIT

OK, I found the answer.

Virtu has now 2 modes of operation.

i-mode: Sets the onboard adapter as the primary one

d-mode: Sets the discrete adapter as the primary one

So, the answer is YES.

There's a way to plug the monitor to the discrete adapter and let virtu forward the intel GPU data to the discrete card output.
And that's the reason why those motherboards doesn't have a video output. But NOT all z68 motherboards support virtu (read answer bellow)

Source: Release notes in:
http://www.lucidlogix.com/driverdownloads-virtu.html
Also: http://techreport.com/discussions.x/20955

Thanks!
a b V Motherboard
June 30, 2011 3:06:44 PM

To my knowledge, you need to connect to the motherboard's rear output panel to benefit from the integrated video chip. Otherwise it would have been applicable for P67 chip boards also. So if you want to use that feature get a board with rear video output panels.
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June 30, 2011 3:17:41 PM

But how about motherboards like:
GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD5-B3
GIGABYTE GA-Z68X-UD7-B3
ASUS P8Z68 DELUXE

They don't have a rear video output, so.. are they unable to use the GPU in the i7 processor for rendering?


Also, from this article:
http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/intel-z68-express-s...

"In our earliest preview, Lucidlogix’s Virtu software allowed you to virtualize discrete graphics thorough Intel's HD Graphics frame buffer. This created a whole host of frankly inconvenient caveats. Natively, Intel's output is limited to 1920x1200"
"Lucidlogix addressed all of our concerns in Virtu 1.0.105 by supporting discrete graphics natively, while virtualizing HD Graphics"

I'm not quite sure, but does that mean that now it "sends the i7 GPU output to the discrete card" instead of sending it "from the Discrete card to the i7 GPU"?
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June 30, 2011 4:04:33 PM

OK, I found the answer.

Virtu has now 2 modes of operation.

i-mode: Sets the onboard adapter as the primary one

d-mode: Sets the discrete adapter as the primary one

So, the answer is YES.

There's a way to plug the monitor to the discrete adapter and let virtu forward the intel GPU data to the discrete card output.
And that's the reason why those motherboards doesn't have a video output.

Source: Release notes in:
http://www.lucidlogix.com/driverdownloads-virtu.html
Also: http://techreport.com/discussions.x/20955

Thanks!

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a c 716 V Motherboard
June 30, 2011 5:23:03 PM

Blues_wolf said:
i-mode: Sets the onboard adapter as the primary one

d-mode: Sets the discrete adapter as the primary one

There're many motherboards with the z68 chipset and without a rear panel video output (VGA, HDMI, DVI).

So, the answer is YES.

The answer is MOST not ALL Z68's run Virtu. However, of the Z68 MOBO's without external or 'emulated' iGPU e.g. ASUS d-Mode only, MOST of the Gigabyte Z68's without an iGPU 'port' will NOT Virtu. Example, one of many, the GA-Z68X-UD7-B3 will not run Virtu, and only has the SSD cache Z68 added 'extras'.

So in ANY Z68 MOBO purchase, VERIFY VIRTU feature if it's important!

No Virtu:
GA-Z68X-UD5-B3 - http://www.gigabyte.us/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3...
GA-Z68X-UD7-B3 - http://www.gigabyte.us/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3...

Emulated internal iGPU to run Virtu:
ASUS P8Z68 DELUXE - http://usa.asus.com/Motherboards/Intel_Socket_1155/P8Z6...

Good Luck! :) 
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June 30, 2011 9:21:06 PM

ups, yes, you're right... not all motherboards with the z68 chipset support virtu and the SSD caching.
But it's possible.
So thanks!
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a c 716 V Motherboard
June 30, 2011 9:37:39 PM

To that the answer is ALL Z68's offer SSD Caching. Gigabyte decided to confuse the hell out of everyone ;) 
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July 4, 2011 12:33:15 PM

I'd still like a bit more clarification on this.

So if I do get a z68 mobo and use the onboard graphics adapter as the primary one does that mean when I'm gaming it's pretty much just a passthrough for my graphics card?

Also is there any word of Virtu's ability to use the onboard graphics along with a graphics card together to boost performance?
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 4, 2011 2:53:36 PM

There's two good articles that I've run across that will better answer your questions.

Lucidlogix -> http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/z68-express-lucidlo...
Virtu -> http://techreport.com/articles.x/20911/2

d-Mode -> http://techreport.com/discussions.x/20955

IMO - other than QuickSync I find no perks to the Z68 for gaming MOBO. An IGPU is 'so' important that the new LGA 2011 SB-E doesn't include any onboard graphics. Further, where the Z68 makes real sense to me if for a fast desktop where gaming isn't needed and the savings of an iGPU is a benefit.

Every benchmark that I've seen the P67 vs Z68 there's do discernable differences.
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July 4, 2011 3:51:04 PM

Well the main reason it's piqued my interest is the possibility of this to bypass the GPU completely when not gaming. This can mean lower power consumption, lower case temps, and less noise. I read an article here that says that power consumption is higher with both, but it's only higher by 4W, that article was written in Feb., Virtu's still in its infancy, and there's already been a pretty big update apparently.

Thanks for the articles. I'm going to give them a read.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 4, 2011 4:20:25 PM

The iGPU i-Mode is your best bet, but keep in mind the discrete GPU under BIOS/Windows defaults are throttled down while not in use. My i7 930 under low load including the monitor is pulling <210W and the Sandy Bridge cuts another 30-40W at the wall. Meaning the CPU and GPU power consumption delta is all dependent upon load i.e. Temps as a correlative to load.

Running e.g. a GTX 560Ti/GTX 570 IMO in i-Mode isn't anything that I would do, I've seen problems {odd behavior/lock-ups/start & shutdown issues, etc} with EPU and many 'abstract' power conserving 'schemes.' I have different PCs for different uses; running my i7 980X 3-WAY SLI is nuts for Goggling and doing 'work.' If you have a good case with good negative pressure air flow then heat isn't a worry. IMO look for cases with at least front/rear plus bottom/top ventilation and side and cpu rear fans are a bonus e.g. CM 690 II Advanced -> http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
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July 4, 2011 5:58:46 PM

That's actually the case that I'm going to get. Also Newegg's running a decent combo deal on a 2500K and some GTX560's so right now it looks like I'm going to go with that. If what you're saying is true then I think I may just go with a P67 board. Stepping "up" to the Z68 Asrock Extreme 4 gets me Virtu, but it's cousin the P67 Extreme 6 has two more SATA III ports and dual LAN.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 4, 2011 6:07:11 PM

The Marvell SE9120 are not a good chipset for fast SSD's, their x1 lane is much slower than the Intel SATA3 and don't RAID. Only the Marvell 9182 are in par with the Intel SATA3 ports with their x2 lanes, and are found on only a few P67/Z68 MOBOs e.g. ASUS Maximus IV Extreme.

Again, for gaming the Z68 offers no advantages, and the SSD caching is financially useless - get a 120GB SSD it'll be a much better option.
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July 4, 2011 8:14:14 PM

Ah yes very nice. That article just reconfirmed everything that I'd been reading and brought it all together. I'm still not 100% decided though. While I don't encode many videos on my computer right now, things change. It'd be nice to have that feature available when and if my needs change. The only reason I'm not completely sold on the Z68 is the loss of those two SATA ports. I know that 8 is a lo,t and I can definitely manage, but the 10 that come on the ASRock Extreme6 will be perfect.
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July 4, 2011 8:22:49 PM

Ah yes very nice. That article just reconfirmed everything that I'd been reading and brought it all together. I'm still not 100% decided though. While I don't encode many videos on my computer right now, things change. It'd be nice to have that feature available when and if my needs change. The only reason I'm not completely sold on the Z68 is the loss of those two SATA ports. I know that 8 is a lo,t and I can definitely manage, but the 10 that come on the ASRock Extreme6 will be perfect.
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July 4, 2011 8:33:42 PM

Hotobu said:
I'm not completely sold on the Z68 is the loss of those two SATA ports. I know that 8 is a lo,t and I can definitely manage, but the 10 that come on the ASRock Extreme6 will be perfect.


Asrock Fatal1ty z68 Professional gen3 should be out in a few days. Has 10 SATA ports. Or the Asrock z68 extreme7 should be out soon and it also has 10 SATA ports. So you get it all: SSD caching, onboard video, virtu, and 10 SATA ports.
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July 4, 2011 8:54:59 PM

Very cool thanks. Sounds a bit expensive though as I was trying to stay below $200 for the mobo and looking at the pricing structure I'm guessing those will be at least $220. I wont be buying anything for well over a month anyway, so I've still got time to make a decision.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 4, 2011 9:49:50 PM

Here's the real issue using the Virtu control panel http://techreport.com/r.x/intel-z68/virtu2.jpg if the game is not listed or available the Virtu won't work in i-Mode so it becomes a maintenance headache and worst no gain.

Next in order to accelerate MPEG-2/4 output your App(s) MUST support Quick Sync or your back to no gains, also if are concerned about quality I suggest you read this article -> http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/video-transcoding-a...

Nothings so cut and dry.

SATA, you can add all the onboard SATA ports you want if you don't care anything about throughput speed. An LGA 1155 with more than 4 or maybe 6 drives gets bogged-down. If you're trying to run 8 or 10 drives then you really should explore a Dedicated SATA Card or Dedicated RAID Card with a minimum x4 and better x8 PCIe, each lane under PCIe 2.x has a 500 MB/s maximum throughput; so 8x150 = 1200 / 500 = 2.4 -> x4 or 8x300 = 2400 / 500 = 4.8 -> x8. The Marvell 912X x1 lane theoretical throughput is 500 MB/s but in reality the 'add-on' aka 'shared lanes' chipset craps-out 360-370 MB/s far from what you'd expect; you can slice a quarter of a pie into as many pieces as you like -- it's still a quarter of a pie just with more crumbs. The moral of the story is assume nothing, and with MOBO's 'more' is often less.
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July 5, 2011 3:08:49 AM

jaquith said:

SATA, you can add all the onboard SATA ports you want if you don't care anything about throughput speed.


You hit the nail on the head. Throughput speed not so important to me. I do have a lot of data so a lot of drives, and I like having enough ports to connect 'em to right on the board without having to waste a pci slot. For me, more is better, and 6 don't cut it. Gimme at least 8. Ten? Better.
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July 5, 2011 6:07:00 AM

jaquith said:
Here's the real issue using the Virtu control panel http://techreport.com/r.x/intel-z68/virtu2.jpg if the game is not listed or available the Virtu won't work in i-Mode so it becomes a maintenance headache and worst no gain.

I don't think that's what's going on.

First off the pack in "whitelist" is just a list of games that come preloaded in the program's whitelist. Those are just the .exes that are selected to run on the GPU. If an application's .exe isn't in that list then it runs with integrated graphics. If it is then it runs on the graphics card.

As for SATA I'm with roscolo. Speed isn't my concern there. SSD drives are just a bit more than I'm willing to pay for right now. I'll keep that in mind if I decide to upgrade to one though.

edit:Although in light of that maybe the best solution is just to pay less for the mobo, and put the savings into a SATA card. I was trying to avoid using more PCI slots, but that may be the best solution.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 5, 2011 1:40:03 PM

Virtu 'white list' - in many cases games are rendered unplayable unless the game is listed, while under d-Mode or P67 very playable; my point is one of i-Mode vs d-Mode vs 'the list.' The Virtu control panel and virtulization is a nuisance. So if you define 0 FPS to 10FPS 'good' then I retract what I stated.


More SATA Less bandwidth - most would disagree once they see and feel a slowdown. This slowdown also spills over to the USB and other I/O 'shared' by the limited LGA 1155 lanes. So if speed doesn't matter then get an AMD 8XX or AMD 9XX. You can argue 'speed doesn't matter' to point of being silly.

USB Speed -> http://www.anandtech.com/show/4330/asus-p8z68v-review/5
Power & Temps -> http://www.anandtech.com/show/4330/asus-p8z68v-review/4

Again, Gaming use the P67 ;) 
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July 5, 2011 1:59:32 PM

I believe you're reading the graph you posted wrong. The first is just with the non integrated GPU, the second is using just the onboard graphics of the processor, and the third is using the whitelist to allow the game to be rendered on the GTX 460 card they used, via the onboard graphics port.

As for the speed doesn't matter argument you're mixing situations. If the only things connected to the SATA ports are HDDS which even at full speed are ~ 60MBps along with 1 or two optical drives which wont be in continuous use, then no speed doesn't matter when you're talking about dividing up 6 and 3 Gbps throuput. It's a rare event (if at all) ALL of them will be used simultaneously. A situation which has no parallels to talking about what processor to buy.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 5, 2011 2:36:52 PM

Okay stay with me now, multiple choice question. The graph is used to illustrate a point.

Game 'X' - Virtu Control panel has NO listing. EITHER d-Mode or discrete GTX 460 is 13~55 FPS, and the iGPU is 0~10 FPS.

Question, running in i-Mode what will be the FPS running Virtu?
[A] 13~55 FPS
0~10 FPS

---

SATA if your HDD is running 60MB/s then 'File-13' them they're junk or 8 year old IDE/SATA1 junk. Typical HDD are 120~145 MB/s, now multiply that by the number of drives but in reality an activated SATA port is going to draw/share it's available and allocated bandwidth; the differences are Native and non-Native and how the MOBO Mfg allocates and switches bandwidth. Next, having 10 JBOD is so friggin unusual that it would be bordering on 'crazy' or 'hoarding' and in any case 'wildly obscure.' Having a large RAID with a lot of drives makes sense, but most MOBO's are limited to a 4 drive RAID 5. RAID 5 running without a RAID Card is slow. So if the argument is JBOD then I'm in the crazy-zone and I'm done with this post.

'6 and 3 Gbps' is the Interface and in the HDD world of 1/2 of SATA2 maximum speed, 6 Gbps 'HDD' is a waste anyway you look at it.
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July 5, 2011 3:06:59 PM

jaquith said:

SATA if your HDD is running 60MB/s then 'File-13' them they're junk or 8 year old IDE/SATA1 junk. .....Next, having 10 JBOD is so friggin unusual that it would be bordering on 'crazy' or 'hoarding' and in any case 'wildly obscure.'


You don't know many long time professional photographers, do you? JBOD. Yes...the more the better. Wasn't long ago that a 1TB drive would set you back an arm and a leg. Hoarding? We call it archiving, or just paranoid backups. Film scans that are 12 years old, of negs and chromes that are much older. And backups. And backups of backups. Have a couple of old "junk" IDE drives that have just sat in my systems for years. Almost never used, and they are backed up elsewhere. Finding that "elsewhere" can be the problem. Probably on DVD disks or a drive on a shelf somewhere. Revamping my website, I spent last week going through archives of film and data and pulled some good ancient work off those IDE drives. Was it fast? Damn right...helluva lot faster than the time it would have taken me to find those DVDs or that drive on a shelf. Glad I didn't toss that junk! :) 

The charts and graphs about speed don't really apply to my work. I'm typically working on 1 image at a time. I have my system loaded with drives now and even on a system I built 4 years ago batch sorting thousands of large image files with Lightroom speed is not an issue.

Could be an issue with video. Maybe this is where the SSD caching feature of z68 comes into play? Let's say you have a system with 8 or 10 JBOD. If one finds this slows down his workflow, would the SSD caching help overcome the slowdown?
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July 5, 2011 4:18:44 PM

Yep and I need it for similar reasons and don't care about speed. JBOD certainly has its uses. As for SSD caching it'd only help if you pull up the file more than once.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 5, 2011 4:27:28 PM

Yep, I know plenty of Professional Photographer's and all the good one's have fast Workstations, redundant RAID with SSD Scratch and 'Film' archives; some with added NAS/Tape backup. Otherwise loosing Baby 'Smith's' photos they're fools for risking loss with poor redundancy archiving. Further, wasting precious time searching JBOD messes. I see no 'upside' to above, and it demonstrates lack of understanding of how to organize themselves.

I appreciate lack of financial resources, but it demands attention as to 'why'.

Learn these RAID equations they're key to efficiency and redundancy.
RAID 5 ; Size = S(n-1) ; Failure = n(n−1)r^2
RAID 6 ; Size = S(n-2) ; Failure = n(n-1)(n-2)r^3

IMO - reading what I have read, minimally funded and needlessly less successful and part of that success drain is WASTING time with equipment that's archaic, mismanaged, disorganized and slow. I upgrade my Workstations and Servers so the money I'm paying my staff isn't being burnt-up with them waiting and fulfills the increasing Demands; scalable infrastructure.

You need to maximize your time being 'productive' and not wasting it. Use the spare time to get more business, time with your family, or on the golf course. ;) 
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July 5, 2011 5:22:45 PM

jaquith said:
redundant RAID with SSD Scratch and 'Film' archives; some with added NAS/Tape backup. .....WASTING time with equipment that's archaic, mismanaged, disorganized and slow. I upgrade my Workstations and Servers so the money I'm paying my staff isn't being burnt-up with them waiting and fulfills the increasing Demands; scalable infrastructure.

You need to maximize your time being 'productive' and not wasting it. Use the spare time to get more business, time with your family, or on the golf course. ;) 


Sounds like a sales pitch. You confuse old and reliable with "archaic, disorganized." Still using a wonderful dedicated film scanner from 2002. Outstanding quality. Kills the "upgraded" flatbeds others moved to. Make a significant portion of my income doing large 40x50 portraits. At least once a week some photog wanders into my studio and wants to know how I get the amazing resolution and detail (let's just say you can count nose hairs). What $45,000 camera? What stitching software? Good luck stitching portraits, kiddos! It's all done with 100 year old technology on a 25 year old view camera on film scanned with a 10 year old scanner and output on a 4 year old printer. Cha-ching!

With my JBOD I don't waste time on IT. With Lightroom, my JBOD is easily and quickly searchable and organized....and I am inherently disorganized, so if it works for me it that's saying something! Seriously, scheduling backups is so easy, simple and takes no time at all, why waste more time and money to build an automated solution? Might make sense for an agency. Makes no sense, and in any event certainly not necessary for an individual photographer. 20 years in and my business is doing well in one of the toughest businesses you can be in tells me it sure not a necessity for me. And I don't waste time or money being held hostage by consultants or techs. I've watched countless colleagues invest in the latest, greatest and fastest and bought that sales pitch hook, line and sinker...and I've watched 'em fall one by one. Especially these days. They weren't focused on their image-making...they were caught up in the technology. Oh, they have plenty of spare time with the family and on the golf-course all right, just not by choice. We've already had this discussion.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 5, 2011 7:31:40 PM

Huh?? - Sales Pitch - How ya gonna pay - with smiley faces, frowns, or maybe a virtual beer? I really don't care how goofy a setup is as long as it isn't mine. ;) 

This 'pitch crapola' reminds me of the, "I'm a Christian' why do I need to sign a contract?," I tell them to go away! They're the most untrustworthy people I've seen. Talentless and poor business people is their problem.

I own an IDX/REO/GIS Tax database company, so I'm not selling anything to you, and I'm use to exceptional organization and efficiency. I'm 100% positive I manage more image data than any Photographer; I have 4 dedicated image servers alone - Yes, they'll all RAID 5 +NAS.

If an untalented Professional 'Photographer' or any poor businessman goes bust it wasn't because of their equipment: Camera, Computers, etc -- again it was because their talent is lacking and/or their poor businessmen. edit: Easily Replaceable!

Anytime I look to hire anyone I look at their work and facilities -- they both must be outstanding and one begets the other.
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July 5, 2011 8:15:58 PM

jaquith said:

I own an IDX/REO/GIS Tax database company, so I'm not selling anything to you, and I'm use to exceptional organization and efficiency. I'm 100% positive I manage more image data than any Photographer; I have 4 dedicated image servers alone - Yes, they'll all RAID 5 +NAS.

If an untalented Professional 'Photographer' or any poor businessman goes bust it wasn't because of their equipment: Camera, Computers, etc -- again it was because their talent is lacking and/or their poor businessmen. edit: Easily Replaceable!

Anytime I look to hire anyone I look at their work and facilities -- they both must be outstanding and one begets the other.


Right. So your solutions are probably more appropriate for a "Tax database company" or other large enterprise organizing all that data, and really don't apply, or certainly aren't make-or-break for the individual photographer.

Contrary to your assertion, I've seen MANY of my colleagues go bust precisely BECAUSE of their equipment, i.e. TOO EXPENSIVE camera, computer, etc. Basically they couldn't recoup the cost of the technology before the technology was obsolete. Do you really want to hear the details of TWO individuals I know in ATL who went utterly broke because they spent 6 figures on Scitex equipment? Hell, within a couple of years you could buy your own better film scanner for less than 3 of their monthly payments! But they had to have "outstanding facilities." Maybe they wanted those outstanding facilities to impress the clients they only had for 2 years. Maybe they were seeking that time on the golf course. They found it! Just not how they anticipated.

In my field, outstanding work speaks for itself in the final image. PERIOD. My clients don't give a damn how I arrived at the final image, as long as it is outstanding, on time, on budget. Sticking to affordable technology that works so that I can do outstanding work for my clients while STAYING WITHIN THEIR BUDGET is how I and my clients define outstanding facilities. It's also why my business has prospered while others have gone under like flies trying to constantly have the fastest, latest and greatest. Pros like me often pick up those fools' equipment for pennies on the dollar once they've headed out to pasture on the golf course.

If someone needs high-end workstations, etc. I don't knock them for having what they need. I don't apply my scenario as an individual commercial photographer to everyone, some of whom are doing huge catalogs with teams of photogs (I'm not) or a ton of video these days. For the most part I'm crafting one image at a time and being rewarded well for the end result. You only seem to be able to see the needs of others through what you need. Maybe that's why much of your advice only sounds like a sales pitch, even though we all know it obviously is not. In other words, everybody ain't you.

That said I appreciate your advice, I just have to run it through my common sense filter every time to glean the parts that apply to me. Fair enough. I'm 'splainin', not complainin'.

Or maybe I've just been doing everything wrong these last 20 years. Maybe I've been screwing up by not having the latest greatest facilities. Maybe all the work I've had and clients I continue to work for are just a flash in the pan compared to what I could have had if only I had some Xeon Workstations, RAID arrays, NAS and some tape backups! Hell, maybe a full IT staff! Maybe I should have mortgaged the house to borrow and do it that way like all those former photogs out on the golf course. Must be good. I mean, they are on the golf course.

Thankfully, yes, all the major mobo manufacturers are going to keep making mobos with 8 and 10 SATA ports. Keep 'em coming! You don't like 'em? You don't need 'em? You don't need / want 8 or 10 JBOD? Too slow for you? OK. Don't buy 'em.

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a b V Motherboard
July 5, 2011 8:29:19 PM

The discussion seems to have gone from Virtu to Virtue. Use PM's guys.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 5, 2011 9:59:03 PM

@Emperus - the pertinent content is SATA, RAID and Costs all of which are important.

From your reply it speaks of nonsense based upon, I don't know: Misconceptions - Urban Legend - Excuses told to you by Colleagues - You like to argue?! Who knows what?!

In all of the the Examples below there should be some sort of NAS or daily 'snapshot' taken. Reason, if your PC decides to corrupt data then ANY or ALL attached drives might be gone for good. This is in addition to physical HDD failures.

By far the safest & best cost approach per capacity is a RAID, the BIG BAD EXPENSE to put you financially 'Out of Business' is a $500 RAID Card. Come On!!!

Xeon WS, maybe adds +$200~+$500; $350 Xeon E3-1275 Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz vs $300 Intel Core i7-2600 Sandy Bridge 3.4GHz, etc the +$50 CPU example gives you an error free environment with ECC RAM. Yet another misconception.

I am not for tossing money away nor am I for making poor and uninformed choices either.

Examples & Expense:

RAID 12TB-14TB $1,700:
$500 (1) RAID Controller Card
$1,200 (8) Seagate Barracuda XT ST32000641AS 2TB

RAID 5 + NAS
Size = S(n-1) = 2TB(8-1) = 14TB

RAID 6 + NAS
Size = S(n-2) = 2TB(8-2) = 12TB

In the RAID 6 example you can have any 2 drives fail.

JBOD 8TB $1,200:
JBOD + NAS
$1,200 (8) Seagate Barracuda XT ST32000641AS 2TB
4 JBOD ; 4x2TB = 8TB {Primary}
4 JBOD ; 4x2TB = 8TB {Backup}

In JBOD you can 1 drive fail, but all of your current daily work is lost.
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July 6, 2011 7:04:27 AM

Again you demonstrate that you only see things through your rather narrow view. What you're saying might make sense if one were building a system and buying all your drives for now and the future all at once. The advantage of JBOD for me and my workflow has been and continues to be I don't have to buy a bunch of Seagate 2TB drives that weren't even available when I built my current system a few years ago. The advantage of JBOD is I can have a hodge podge of 3 yr. old 80 GB, 160 GB, 500 GB, 1 TB Maxtors, Seagates, Hitachis all assembled and swapped and replaced as time goes on and simply backup and add the drives as needed or as I pick up a deal here and there.

The first thing I do with any image files is duplicate them to 2 HD's, so contrary to your assumptions, I can have 1 drive fail and lose no daily work. 11 years of digital workflow and no daily work lost. Works for me. You make these blanket statements, but you assume way too much about the workflow, budget, expense of others, that for some reason you then feel the need to criticize. Ad infinitum. In the future I just try to separate the useful info. from the opinionated assumptions, so keep up the good work, champ. It is appreciated, and that is ultimately what makes the forums useful.

Sorry we have strayed form the topic!

To the OP: Yes, I would (er, I will) get a z68 board with rear video out. Won't hurt to have it. You may not want or need it but for what will be a small amount to pay, good to have. You may use it or virtu in the future if you don't immediately. Handy to have the onboard video if your GPU fails in any case.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 6, 2011 1:52:34 PM

Again, I make no such 'Blanket' or 'Ad infinitum' limitless statements. What I posted is considered very basic, and I make no comparisons to 'my systems' - trust me! To me JBOD is 'Just a Bunch Of Dilapidated junk' and demonstrates your Business Workflow. The OP and others who are building a new system hopefully will learn something.

roscolo said:
...The first thing I do with any image files is duplicate them to 2 HD's, so contrary to your assumptions...

Duh say what?! So you show the unfiltered * untouched-up images to your clients -- ALL the blemishes, zits, red eye, no-glow. Yeah, I gotcha now ;) 

The drives don't have to be 2TB they can be any same size: 80GB, 500GB, 1TB, etc. You're over looking a critical point, if your JBOD are connected to (1) one PC and when, not if, there's ANY problems: SATA hardware corruption, Windows corruption, Virus, etc then ALL of that data (photos) is toast - gone for good. NAS or similar methods to 'snapshot' the data would be your ONLY source.

I'd be hugely surprised that you haven't lost data over the years. I know years ago I did and ever since I've been progressively cautious. In my case the fundamentals are: RAID, Redundant Servers, NAS and off premises NAS. Home PCs with RAID 1 and a Home Server with RAID 6. None of which I'm recommending here because the costs are very high.

'NAS' can be in many forms of 'media' from Tape, NAS server with RAID, etc. IMO - for cheap look at maybe a Blu-Ray burner; BD-R comes in 25GB and 50GB capacity and is cheap. HDD in commercial use are good for 3-5 years then they should be replaced.

None of this seems necessary until you have a catastrophic failure. Then you go from being smug to crying like a baby and out of business. I've seen major financial institutions pulling the Tape after a major H/W corruption.

$520 (8) $65 SAMSUNG Spinpoint F3 HD103SJ 1TB
RAID 5 + NAS
Size = S(n-1) = 1TB(8-1) = 7TB
RAID 6 + NAS
Size = S(n-2) = 1TB(8-2) = 6TB

Good Luck - you'll need it ;) 
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July 6, 2011 6:40:52 PM

jaquith said:

Duh say what?! So you show the unfiltered * untouched-up images to your clients -- ALL the blemishes, zits, red eye, no-glow. Yeah, I gotcha now ;) 


I'd be hugely surprised that you haven't lost data over the years.


Again, you have so much to offer, but you embarrass yourself with your assumptions about my profession that I clearly see now you have no real knowledge of. The vast majority of my work is architectural, so, no zits or red-eye in those images. Very little in the way of retouching, either, because I was a professional long before digital came along and I understand scouting, prep, lighting and exposure. Most of my files could go to press straight from camera. Retouching is for final enhancement, not correcting dumb mistakes.

The large scale portraits I mentioned that I do? Remember I said you can count nose hairs? "Duh, say what?" ( What is your nonsensical language about? ) Yes, I print them 40x50, some up to 8 ft., B&W, with ALL the skin tone EXACTLY as is...that level of realism and sharpness in monumental prints is what I'm getting paid for! Like I said...you assume way too much. You only prove the point I made that if you actually knew any professional photographers you would know that if a photographer actually understands lighting there is no "red eye" (lol) or "glow" (what is that?) You know some photographers. I get that. You don't know any professionals or they wouldn't be retouching "red-eye."

11 years and I haven't lost any data. You're surprised. OK. Well, then, I'm doing something right. Glad you finally "got me now." My high-tech secret? Copy all data immediately to 2 add'l. drives. Internal and external. Now that data is in three locations. I looked into a NAS. Couldn't find any advantage for me over a NAS and just plugging my drives into an external port and copying the data over. And about 3-4 times a year an intern will take the external drives and copy it again to DVD, just in case. Costs me no time and no money. Now that data is in four locations. And by then it's with my client. That makes five. My business has thrived with no NAS, no Xeon WS, etc. Just home-built systems and JBOD and swappable external drives. Maybe I'm just lucky. Maybe it's because I'm not wasting time retouching red-eye and other idiocies. Sheesh. I'm done with this now. I sincerely appreciate your advice, sans assumptions.

To the OP: I apologize for this ongoing nonsense. I'm waiting for more 10 SATA port z68 boards, and I will likely go with the Asrock z68 Fatal1ty Pro pending reviews or the Extreme7. Why the Fatal1ty? Not only do I like having all 10 of those "useless" SATA ports, I like having that floppy connector to be found on the Fatal1ty. At any rate, when I actually have one of the boards I will follow up. I would still say go with z68 with onboard video port.
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a c 716 V Motherboard
July 6, 2011 10:32:33 PM

I was being sarcastic obviously, and uncomplimentary - 'Glow' & 'Red Eye.'

No, I am clearly not a Professional Photographer I have a cheapo Nikon D90 not a Nikon D3S or D3X, Hasselblad, or Arca-Swiss. I use to develop my own B&W and color film and prints. So a hobbyist yes. Architecture I would assume Arca-Swiss or at minimum aspherical correction lenses and vignetting correction. Otherwise, you are correcting in Photoshop. Oddly, each RAW image should be approximately16MB; about 60± images per GB. My photographer fiend in Iraq took over 7,000 picture in 6 months; you have how many TB?

Assuming you do touch-up then you've got multiple copies floating around that creates a rats nest of mangled data.

Do it your way, I really don't care. There's all sorts of consequences - you know them now. Otherwise, we're digging at one another. I'm very successful and I hope that you are as well.
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July 27, 2011 6:56:12 PM

Blues_wolf said:
There're many motherboards with the z68 chipset and without a rear panel video output (VGA, HDMI, DVI).

I've been reading about the Logix virtu feature, and it said it allows you to use both the GPU included in second generation i7 processors and the discrete card, but that you needed to connect the monitor to the onboard video output.

Due to the existence of these motherboards without a video output onboard, I gotta ask.

Is it possible to connect the monitor to the discrete card output and still use the virtu feature to use both the discrete card and the GPU in the i7 processor?

Thanks!
----------------------------------------
EDIT

OK, I found the answer.

Virtu has now 2 modes of operation.

i-mode: Sets the onboard adapter as the primary one

d-mode: Sets the discrete adapter as the primary one

So, the answer is YES.

There's a way to plug the monitor to the discrete adapter and let virtu forward the intel GPU data to the discrete card output.
And that's the reason why those motherboards doesn't have a video output. But NOT all z68 motherboards support virtu (read answer bellow)

Source: Release notes in:
http://www.lucidlogix.com/driverdownloads-virtu.html
Also: http://techreport.com/discussions.x/20955

Thanks!


I spent a few hours messing around with Virtu last night. IMHO, it's not all that it's cracked up to be. For example, I bought the GA-Z68A-D3H-B3 motherboard strictly for the ability to access the processor GPU and use Intel Quick Sync. I didn't want to spend too much on this board just in case, but also wanted to make sure it had all the features I need right now (including SLI capabilities). This was the cheapest Gigabyte Z68 board w/ these features. However, with Virtu being a "trial" software, you're limited to using only 3 supported products. You can't add any other software, at least not while this software is in trial mode.

I had to download one of the supported/listed software from Arcsoft (MediaConverter 7) in order to properly test this Virtu utility. I had previously done testing with the Movavi Video Converter program and at with that program Intel Quick Sync was at least 3x slower than Nvidia CUDA (I can hardly wait to put my 2nd GTX 460 in my rigg to test how fast SLI will be since this software supports multiple GPUs as well, but I need to wait until this weekend when my new GPU cooler arrives).

Using Arcsoft MediaConverter 7, I converted a 3.8GB DVD to ~550MB (using avchd format) and it took roughly 5 1/2 minutes with my i7 2600k (overclocked to 4.6GHZ). I then disabled Virtu and using the same Arcosft software, I selected Nvidia CUDA and converted the same DVD. With CUDA being a different type of compression/conversion technique, the file was now ~870mb and took almost 9 minutes to convert. I chose AVCHD as this was the defaut. Not sure how fast (or slow) it would have been if I chose H.264 or some other .avi format. I won't test these other formats as it's moot and I had already uninstalled Arcsoft MediaConverter 7 as I don't need it, plus it was a 15 day trial.

Now regarding where to place the monitor cable.... at least with my Gigabyte board, you can use either the motherboard port, or the discrete card's port, works both ways for Virtu. However, I haven't tested my rigg with any games yet, so I'm not sure if I could access the discrete card if my HDMI was connected to the motherboard. I believe I can, as you just need to enable Virtu to "on" and the discrete card would be selected, and vise-versa. If you have the cable connected to the discrete card, you enable Virtu "on" and you'll be able to access the process GPU (to take advantage of Intel Quick Sync).

With this being said, I think I'll switch back to my MSI P67 board. This board has more features like 2 more SATA ports, better build, better BIOS, etc etc. Unless there is a substantial margin between Intel Quick Sync and Nvidia CUDA, I just wasted my money on the Z68 board - but at least I didn't spend more money on a fancier z68 board just to find out Virtu and Intel Quick Sync is not all that.

Off the record, I use a couple different media converters. One from AVS4YOU and Movavi Video Converter (included in Movavi Video Suite 9). My favorite so far is Movavi VC, although the AVS4YOU software is pretty good as well, but it's very basic and generic looking. Anyhow, using Movavi VC I converted a 2.8GB .avi using CUDA in roughly 18 minutes. Disabling CUDA and using Intel Quick Sync, this same file took 48 minutes. Now I tried this with both Virtu On and Off and there was no difference in the time. Reason? Because Movavi VC is not supported by Virtu! Not sure why this would make a difference, but then again, I test Virtu (w/ MediaConverter 7) using AVCHD format and used H.267 with Movavi VC. Anyhow, 18 minutes vs my old rigg (q9300 barely OC'd) used to take several hours, if it hadn't already locked up or crashed. I think the new 2nd Gen chip and any newer gen video card is the ticket. With the i7 2600k, I technically don't need to use SLI anymore for my tasks, but if adding another card (since I have the PCI-e slot) will make the process (or gaming) better/faster, then that's a plus.

BTW, I upgraded to the latest version (release on July 18th, v.1.2.105) and I don't see any option for i-mode and d-mode.


Edit -

My mistake. I was wrong about the conversion times (and file size of converted video file) regarding Intel Quick Sync (using Virtu) and Nvidia CUDA. Here's the screen shots of the final conversion:


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August 5, 2011 12:36:01 PM

Now, one thing I was exited about when reading the Virtu features was the ability of virtualizing the discrete cards, and I'm not referring to the i-gpu mode but to the ability to have 1 ati and 1 nvidia running at the same time, combining their gpu processing capabilities, or having 2 nvidia cards that are not the same model running in SLI mode.

Virtu creates a virtual box which each GPU which lets combine them in whatever way it wants.

So, I'm not quite interested in using the onboard GPU, but for example, be able to keep my gt 550 working when I buy a gt 580.

So, has anyone tried to combine Ati and Nvidia cards, or put 2 different models of Nvidia in SLI?

Thanks
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August 5, 2011 3:45:22 PM

Quote:
Now, one thing I was exited about when reading the Virtu features was the ability of virtualizing the discrete cards, and I'm not referring to the i-gpu mode but to the ability to have 1 ati and 1 nvidia running at the same time, combining their gpu processing capabilities, or having 2 nvidia cards that are not the same model running in SLI mode.

Virtu creates a virtual box which each GPU which lets combine them in whatever way it wants.

So, I'm not quite interested in using the onboard GPU, but for example, be able to keep my gt 550 working when I buy a gt 580.

So, has anyone tried to combine Ati and Nvidia cards, or put 2 different models of Nvidia in SLI?

What you're referring to is not Virtu. This product is called Hydralogix, a program made by the same company as Virtu (Lucidlogix). Virtu allows you to combine a discrete card + the iGPU. You might be able to run Hydralogix + Virtu, but I'm not sure, as Virtu is just a trial software for now, so testing it (as I mentioned above) was kind of lame.

I haven't tried it Hydralogix. I do have a 4850 and twin GTX 460's, but I don't see the point in testing this out at this time as I have no use for a 4850 in my current system. IMHO, I don't see much use for combining two different cards. From all the various tech boards I've been on, ATI owners don't like Nvidia cards, and people with Nvidia cards have no need for an ATI card. Myself, I bought the GTX so I could do 3D in my home theater with my 3D projector. At the time, ATI didn't really have the capability and you had to use a third party 3D driver (like iZ3D). But Nvidia is integrated in several supported software, including this HD3D tuner card I got from Avermedia (via Australia because they don't sell it in the U.S.). Anyhow, the downside being Nvidia and 3D Vision is proprietary, but on the upside, it's supported by a whole lot of software and games! I'm happy with Nvidia.

As a matter of fact, I just re-installed Windows 7 because I was trying to configure Smart Response Technology using a 64Gb SSD, but there is an issue with the Gigabyte boards where the "accelerate" button necessary to turn on SSD caching isn't there. It's just, missing. I've went through several posts on Intel's site and many people have ran into this problem. Some said they got it fixed, others tried the solution and the button was still gone. Anyhow, the point I was trying to get at was that I re-installed Windows 7 on the SSD (instead of SATA) and I haven't re-installed Virtu and I probably won't. The other tests I've done with Virtu vs. SLI and SLI blew Virtu away (using it for video conversion).

IMHO, if you have a SLI/CF motherboard, there is no reason why you need to run a 3rd party software to do the same thing the video card can do without the complication, albeit, it would be nice to use an extra video card of a different brand, type, etc. if you had one lying around, as opposed to spending another $200+ on another video card. But any serious gamer or serious computer geek would rather have matching cards, IMO. Had there been enough testing and reviews, I could have just saved $130 (by not buying the Gigabyte board and stuck with my P67 MSI board) and installed an SSD instead. I don't regret it as it was a valuable learning experience.

Edit -

I forgot, here's what I was talking about regarding the No Acceleration button. This control panel should have an acceleration button to enable SSD caching, but it's missing!

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October 8, 2011 2:43:59 PM

The answer is not yes exactly, however virtu logix will work yes. It is a mixed up situation.

Blues_wolf said:
OK, I found the answer.

Virtu has now 2 modes of operation.

i-mode: Sets the onboard adapter as the primary one

d-mode: Sets the discrete adapter as the primary one

So, the answer is YES.

There's a way to plug the monitor to the discrete adapter and let virtu forward the intel GPU data to the discrete card output.
And that's the reason why those motherboards doesn't have a video output.

Source: Release notes in:
http://www.lucidlogix.com/driverdownloads-virtu.html
Also: http://techreport.com/discussions.x/20955

Thanks!


I tested both modes of virtu logix on my Z68p-DS3 cheap motherboard with my ati 5870.

When you have the monitor connected to your external pci-e graphic card, virtu logix will use the onboard graphic chip, ONLY if you make video conversions and such. Your Primary External Graphic card will always eat power and work on desktop and on games. You can easily see that by checking the applications tab on virtu logix panel where you will see just the media converters/ etc programs. (you can add extra programs manually too).

Now if your motherboard has onboard exit for dvi or hdmi.. and you connect your monitor there, your internal low power gpu will take over on all window graphics AND conversions AND games, but virtu logix at application tab this panel, will show you a whole list of tested games that will use your primary external graphic card in case you play them.(you can add extra games manually). This is more proper setup because your discrete adapter will work ONLY on games and won't eat power otherwise. (of course tomshardware checked at a review and some discrete cards have issues to go to min power)

Now if you don't have a dvi/hdmi/vga exit on your motherboard then of course the only solution is the first, which is called D-mode .

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December 5, 2012 5:18:09 PM

You need the video output in the backpanel, some how the Lucid virtu enables the motherboard to use the GPU and transfer the data coming from it to it's output, so you can use the integrated graphics in the sandybridge processors and also use the discrete GPU without the need to connect the monitor to the GPU, the integrated graphics also gives u Qsync which is more than great for encoding/rendering videos...
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