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PC for 3d rendering.......x58 vs SB

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April 27, 2011 6:46:09 PM

Hi to everyone,

A couple of months ago I asked about which platform to go but I didnt buy anything so now is the time.

First of all I need to say that this PC will be used only for 3d rendering and nothing else, games are not even considered.Second this PC will not be upgraded in the near future, lets say 3-4 years so upgrade path is not important, from the start I know what I buy now will be used for 3 years and then I'll change everything like now (I'm using Athlon 3200+ :(  ) Actually my question is more about the relation between faster architecure but dual channel (SB) vs slower architecture but triple channel (x58) when doing 3D rendering and similiar multi threaded tasks.

And for my question I'll copy the same post that some guy have asked on another forum but didnt get answer:

The CPUs are 2600k and 960


Question for all,
I've been researching on the subject of benefits of an extra channel of memory. Now, research shows that for gaming, an extra channel doesn't add a whole lot of performance advantage, that, however, could be because games usually do not require moving large amounts of data. BUT, if you're doing 3D rendering, encoding or things that require a lot of ram and video memory would a dual-channel start to slack behind tripple channel because of bandwidth shortage?

Now the kicker, would the architecture/frequency benefits of sandybridge 2600k compensate for the lack of an extra channel in real life situations for media/3d workstation?

The benchmarks show that yes, 2600k outperforms i7 950(which is only a bit slower than 960) by a good margin especially in rendering/encoding times. However, all of the benchmarks are testing quite small files (500mb). Does this test show reality of RL? Or in real life with huge files the dual-channel will start to bottle neck lightning fast 2600k?

So, bottom line question. For a media/3D workstation, with all pros and cons considered, would you rather go with triple channel 1600mhz i7 960 or dual channel 1600mhz 2600k?


Remember: no gaming, no need of an upgrade path, only performance for render.

And one last thing,

I've seen people say that triple channel still isnt used like it should by the applications or something like that, and since I'll have this rig for a couple of years maybe there will be some benefit from it down do road? (I know a little fortune teller question)

Thanks



I ask this because every question about this topic, 960 vs 2600k turns out to be more or less about gaming.


More about : rendering x58

a c 192 à CPUs
April 27, 2011 6:59:35 PM

What rendering programs do you use? Are they all 64 bit?

The reason games tend not to show a large improvement with moving to triple channel memory is because they tend to be 32 bit applications and are restricted to 2GB of data in memory at a time, they are also much more GPU dependent than CPU dependent, in a good piece of software, the CPU will never be waiting on data to come from the RAM for it to continue which is why adding more or faster memory only improves things by small amounts.


Whether your programs need the additional channel of memory really is more dependent on which programs you use, but i would expect the 2600K to perform slightly better overall even if it is slightly memory limited, regardless either will be exponentially faster than your Athlon 3200+
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April 27, 2011 7:19:34 PM

First to be clear I must say that this PC is a gift for my liitle brother who is a very tallented animation student and I want to serve him good for some time.

Right now I asked him about the programs and he told me that he uses the most :

Adobe After Effects CS5

Adobe Photoshop CS5

Adobe Premiere Pro CS5

Sony Vegas Pro 10

Autodesk 3ds Max 2010

Autodesk Maya 2010

And I guess future versions from them.
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April 27, 2011 7:29:38 PM

I don't see much difference between i7 920 and i7 2600k for 3d. I use 3ds max 2010. I have imported some scenes from finished projects to render on both, and got similar results: 3h 20 min, and 3 hours 31 minutes for the 920. 8 gb of ram in 2600k, 6gb in 920, the only difference is the 2600k had gaming cards in it, and the 920 has a quattro card (not sure which one).
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April 27, 2011 7:34:00 PM

Well, with the exception of 6 core CPU's in very threaded environments, the SB chips beat everything out there. While the 6-core X58 chips are "faster" for a lot of these apps, they cost a few hundred more for very limited gains. Go SB.
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April 27, 2011 7:50:32 PM

festerovic:

I must say you sir are one of the few people that said that didn't see much difference between the 2 in the use that I'm interested.

gamerk316:

I thought about getting the 970 for 600$ but since I live in Macedonia (Europe) I'll need to order this CPU from USA because they dont have it here and then the prices after customs and taxes go WAY up.

I should add that I'll OC either off the CPUs.

I'm starting to think maybe I'll should wait for the 8-core bulldozer since a lott of people say it will be server CPU and see how it will perform with multi threaded apps.
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a c 188 à CPUs
April 27, 2011 8:25:43 PM

Honestly, the Intel® Core™ I7 2600K and the Intel Core I5 2500K would outperform the Intel Core I7 960 in almost everything I can think of. Maybe the Intel Core I7 960 might outperform the Intel Core I5 2500K in something that was very heavily multi-threaded but otherwise I would still go with the 2nd generation Intel Core processors.

Christian Wood
Intel Enthusiast Team
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April 27, 2011 8:43:51 PM

I guess 2600k is a better option from the 960, I thought maybe the triple channel memory and the bigger memory bandwidth would made some difference in rendering but I guess I was wrong.

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a b à CPUs
April 27, 2011 8:52:58 PM

I don't think the extra channel is going to help much... plus, if you just invest in some really good RAM like 2000mhz DDR3 it'll probably have all the bandwidth you need even with a 5ghz OC on a 2600k.
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April 27, 2011 9:19:07 PM

I was just looking some benchmarks and boy these 2600ks and 2500k does fly.I wouldn't push it 5ghz 24/7 since this rig will be most of the day and night on, but 4.3 or maybe 4.6 on good air cooler will be ok.

Since I'm almost set on going the SB route I'll want to wait for the z68 boards to became availible and that means purchase at the end of May (I'm guessing the 11th of May or something like that is the correct release date? ).

The only thing that is bothering me is that damn 8-core FX Bulldozer :)  and that release date in June if its correct.I know Sandy is blazing fast but still the release date is so near that I want to see the performance of the "famous" bulldozer.
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a b à CPUs
April 28, 2011 4:52:06 PM

igor_xxx said:
I was just looking some benchmarks and boy these 2600ks and 2500k does fly.I wouldn't push it 5ghz 24/7 since this rig will be most of the day and night on, but 4.3 or maybe 4.6 on good air cooler will be ok.

Since I'm almost set on going the SB route I'll want to wait for the z68 boards to became availible and that means purchase at the end of May (I'm guessing the 11th of May or something like that is the correct release date? ).

The only thing that is bothering me is that damn 8-core FX Bulldozer :)  and that release date in June if its correct.I know Sandy is blazing fast but still the release date is so near that I want to see the performance of the "famous" bulldozer.


I think my earlier post wasnt that clear - I had both chips clocked the same, at 3ghz. At stock clocks, or at max overclock (mine at least) (3.6 920, 4.8 2600k) there is no comparison. I thought the idea was which chip was faster, not which faster clocked chip is faster. There really is no debate - if you want a much faster chip get the 2600k.

re: bulldozer - you can't look at it that way. There will always be something new coming out. If you wait and get a bulldozer 8 core, then they will just release a 12 core, and you will still lament.
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April 28, 2011 8:50:28 PM

After reading all of the replies I decided that the best thing to do is to go with the 2600k, everything that I can see points in the direction that its a great cpu.
Today I've searched all over town and there isnt a single 2600k in stock, only a couple 2600s.Next week there will be a shipment of CPUs and there should be one or two 2600k so I'll buy one right away and then wait for the z68 in peace.
Regarding the Amd, I know its silly to wait for the next thing, since there always be something around the corner and I honestly think now that Sandy will be more than enough to last till lets say Haswell or whatever is called the next generation after Ivy.

Thanks everyone for the help, now I just need to start getting everything and order some good cooler from the USA since everything here is junk.
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April 28, 2011 8:50:57 PM

Best answer selected by Igor_xxx.
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