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Please Feedback On Entry Workstation!

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May 18, 2011 9:38:38 PM

Hi,
I am planning for building an entry level budget workstation with following details,


=======================================================

[Processor] Intel Core i7-870 2.93 GHz [24,800]
[Video Card] VCQ600-PB Quadro 600 1024MB DDR3 PCIe 2.0x16 [13,500]
[Motherboard] Gigabyte H67MA-D2H-B3 [8,200]
[Ram] Twinmos 4GB DDR3 1333 [3,600]
[Power Supply] Gigabyte 460WT Power Supply [3,400]
[HDD] Hitachi 500GB SATA [3,300]

=======================================================
currency in bdt (74 bdt = 1 usd)

I need feedback on whole system rather if this would work together or not. I will use 3ds max mostly for modeling, rigging, animation, rendering etc.

Does the mobo would work with the processor and gpu? How could I chop down the total amount a little? How bad games would perform on this? Where I should make a definite change? Any bad combo? Any better suggestion? Please help me out, I really appreciate your knowledge.
May 18, 2011 10:23:31 PM

The H67 motherboard would be LGA 1155, but your selected processor is LGA 1156. The CPU you need is the i7-2600K, which is also stronger than the 870.

You should get 8gb (2x4GB) of DDR3 RAM. It needs to have a voltage of 1.5V and can be 1333Mhz or 1600Mhz

You need to find a higher quality PSU to protect those parts. You would be in the right wattage range if that PSU was actually capable of that much, but it is probably not. Without knowing where you are shopping I can't really say what to buy.

Since you mentioned a budget, you should downgrade to an i5-2500K processor to free up some money for the RAM and PSU.

You also need to consider that your case needs to be adequately ventilated.
May 18, 2011 11:58:12 PM

Proximon,

20,000,000 people are in this country yet only ONE website will let you choose from their scarce stock supply. They had i7-950 but that is a past tense now, stuck to this with increasing daily price... anyways thank you for your kind reply. You are right I selected wrong motherboard for that cpu.

Availability is more prioritized than budget, I am forced to bring only the GPU from US (from a kind person) since none uses any professional video cards here...

Alright, no one sells i7-2600K in this ghost town, so if I could (fortunately) get

AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz 9MB Cache [19,700]

added with

MSI 880GMA-E45 Chipset - AMD 880G [8,500]

available with the previously posted setup will it be any good?

I am decided with 8gb (2x4GB) of DDR3 RAM 1.5 volts each. How much VA should PSU have for this workstation in your opinion. I can manage

Thermaltake WO134RE Maximum Power (WT) = 550 [7,000]

Is that more than I need? Thank you in advance.


Related resources
May 19, 2011 3:45:29 AM

The MSI 880GMA-E45 is a mATX board, which is just fine if you will not use the extra slots. The 880G chipset is good, and will provide you with a backup video option if needed.

It does sound like the AMD CPU might be a decent choice for you.

The Thermaltake is certainly moving in the right direction. I have to look it up.... not much data on it... probably about 30 amps on the 12V rail, built by CWT so probably adequate.

Given that a modern high-quality psu is more like 40 amps though, it's possible you might see better ones for less.

This is not a complete list but see if any of the PSUs I have ranked 1-3 are available:
http://rankedpsulist.dabbledb.com/publish/rankedpsulist...

If not, go with the Thermaltake.

On the RAM voltage, it's not so important with the AMD build... but if the price is OK go for it.
May 19, 2011 7:18:14 AM

How about this one,
Model - Gigabyte
Maximum Power (WT) - 550
Input Voltage (V) - 240
[4,300]

which is half the price of Thermaltake I mentioned earlier. I have another one here from you ranking,

Model - Gigabyte Odin Pro GE-M800A-D1
Maximum Power (WT) - 800
Input Voltage (V) - 240
[9,900]

But this one is expensive than the previous one, another question is killing me that what are the benefits of using more maximum power (WT) on a workstation, like do I really need 800 WT PSU?

On the motherboard, is the extra slot really an extra slot only? or it can be utilized in future?

Thanks in advance...
May 19, 2011 8:47:02 AM

A PSU supplies different types of power, but the most important for modern computers is 12V. All the power that your PSU supplies needs to be clean. It also needs to be consistent... for instance, when the computer draws more power the 12V power needs to only drop by a small amount. Too much of this "V-droop" causes system instability or gradual damage.

So it's not the amount of 12V amps you need to be most concerned with. 35 amps should be fine, and a good 500W PSU will supply at least that many. Gaming computers might need larger PSUs when they have very power hungry video cards. Quaddro cards are not so thirsty.

We can be sure the Odin Pro is good, but the 550W Gigabyte is probably not good. I only see two 550W Gigabyte PSUs listed and both are old designs with smaller 12V rails.

Well, extra PCI slots can be used for different things. A wireless card or RAID controller or TV card... lot's of choices. So having extra expansion slots can be good, but if you are just doing work on this machine I doubt you would need them.



May 19, 2011 4:31:31 PM

If you can find an Asus motherboard you most likely can use 'QVL' ECC RAMs.

With the AMD x6 & Quadro graphics that is quite a decent entry-level workstation.

In my experience Thermaltake PSUs give clean power up to their efficiency rating, so 550x.70(efficiency)=385w

Quadro 600 TDP = 40w

That leaves decent headroom for cranking up that 1090T if you were so inclined :) 
May 19, 2011 5:55:07 PM

Proximon,
Thanks a lot for your replies, I have few questions for you to answer, about motherboard it says in following details that it has one PCI Express x16 Slot - 1? Is this model is different? Although this motherboard shows two of each ports in their picture.

Model - MSI 880GMA-E45
Form Factor - Micro ATX
Supported CPU - Phenom II / Athlon II / Sempron 100 Series
Chipset - AMD 880G
RAM Type - DDR3
RAM Bus (MHz) - 1600 (OC)/1333/1066/800
RAM Max. (GB) - 16
RAM Slot - 4
PCI Express x16 Slot - 1
FSB Speed (MHz) - 2600
SATA Port - 6
IDE Port - 1
Audio Channel - 8
Video Chipset - ATI Radeon HD 4250
LAN Speed (Mbps) - 10/100/1000
USB Interface - USB 2.0, USB3
USB Port - 6
Warranty (Year) - 3


Updated Entry Level Workstation.
=======================================================

[Processor] AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz 9MB Cache [19,700]
[Video Card] VCQ600-PB Quadro 600 1024MB DDR3 PCIe 2.0 x16 [13,500]
[Motherboard] MSI 880GMA-E45 Chipset - AMD 880G [8,500]
[Ram] 2 X Twinmos 4GB DDR3 1333 RAM [7,200]
[Power Supply] Gigabyte Odin Pro GE-M800A-D1 [9,900]
[HDD] Hitachi 500GB SATA [3,300]

=======================================================
currency in bdt (74 bdt = 1 usd)

Now, about Power Supply, I added Gigabyte Odin Pro but 800 WT? Can I cut the cost down a bit? I am almost prepared for my purchase, within a couple weeks, any feedback is appreciated. I just want to make sure I am getting the right parts that experts recommended and not getting ripped off by those pc selling zombies.


wisecracker,
Thank you for your reply, they don't sell asus motherboard here (ironic?), its all msi or gigabyte... believe it my friend they never probably heard 'QVL' either, could you explain a word or two on this type? Although they have Corsair xms3 DDR3-1600 [7,000.00 for 4 GB] is this going to do any good to my workstation? If so then by how much performance-wise? Appreciate your help.
May 20, 2011 1:20:04 AM

Yes, the board has one PCI-E slot and one PCI slot. You can find a picture of it here:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I don't think an 800W PSU is a good choice for this build. Even though it's a quality PSU, you are going to draw a lot less power than that.

In fact, I don't see you ever drawing more than 280W. That's 12V power. Let's say 22 amps. From there we factor in room for expansion, margin, longevity, and finally as wisecracker pointed out we look at peak efficiency of the PSU. When the dust settles it really seems that a 30 Amp PSU would be just fine. 40 amps would be OK also, but not if it meant sacrificing quality.

Since the 800W Odin is probably between 60-70 amps, it's really just too much PSU. It would work fine but waste electricity.

Seasonic makes some very good 380W and 430W PSUs.. these are often priced quite well when other companies sell them. Antec is one example. They also sell a 380W made by Delta that is very nice. Delta is another quality manufacturer.

Seasonic does have a good presence in your part of the world, so perhaps there is some hope that you could find one. In India they are very available and sometimes quite inexpensive:
http://techshop.in/store/seasonic-400w-ss400es-bronze-c...
May 20, 2011 11:03:42 AM

Updated Entry Level Workstation.
=======================================================

[Processor] AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz 9MB Cache [19,700]
[Video Card] VCQ600-PB Quadro 600 1024MB DDR3 PCIe 2.0 x16 [13,500]
[Motherboard] MSI 880GMA-E45 Chipset - AMD 880G [8,500]
[Ram] 2 X Twinmos 4GB DDR3 1333 RAM [7,200]
[Power Supply] Thermaltake WO311RE (430WT)(230V) [3,300]
[HDD] Hitachi 500GB SATA [3,300]

=======================================================
currency in bdt (74 bdt = 1 usd)

Here are available choices for power supply:
http://www.ryanscomputers.com/model.php?itemid=75&itemn...

Please comment...
May 21, 2011 4:27:55 AM

McSteel has confirmed what I thought, that all those less expensive Thermaltakes and Gigabytes are bad choices. It seems like the BEST choice there is the 675W Thermaltake... but that's really too much for you to spend. The 550W Thermaltake is going to be the best option for you I think.
May 21, 2011 4:38:54 PM

Proximon,
Thank you for your reply, for now this is how my current workstation looks like,

Updated Entry Level Workstation.
==================================================

[Processor] AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz 9MB Cache [19,700]
[Video Card] VCQ600-PB Quadro 600 1024MB DDR3 PCIe 2.0 x16 [13,500]
[Motherboard] MSI 880GMA-E45 Chipset - AMD 880G [8,500]
[Ram] 2 X Twinmos 4GB DDR3 1333 RAM [7,200]
[Power Supply] Thermaltake WO134RE (550WT)(230V) [7,000]
[HDD] Hitachi 500GB SATA [3,300]

==================================================
currency in bdt (74 bdt = 1 usd)

But there is one catch, since you are expert I bet you could solve this issue in no time, the catch is power failure, constant power failure, brown outs (as they call in US) we call it here load-shedding, we hate it, yet we have to put up with it everyday, the primary reason that my workstation build is 'Budget' type because of this annoying power failure issues down here in Dhaka, where I have to save a good chunk of money for a good UPS in one side.

Usual solution might be a UPS (uninterrupted power supply) under this circumstances, but in harsh reality, this uninterrupted power supplies are not actually uninterrupted, it will interrupt the system, my younger brother uses a C2D with Intel DG (so far I recall) motherboard, his monitor is 20" Dell LCD and the UPS that he uses gives him about 10 min max backup. The catch is most often the UPS will fail and force the PC to restart leaving him mad while save games are not properly done. So, this is obvious that UPS that he has is indeed interrupts power big time.

His issue is not which I am bugging you about, my honest concern is the 1 hrs (+60 min) load-shedding, it occurs at least 5 times a day, chewing productivity down by solid 300 min!!! I refuse to deal with it and willing to know the best solution.

I will be using Asus MS228 21.5 InchLED Monitor, Resolution 1920 x 1080
Cont. Ratio 10000000:1 OR Benq V2220H 21.5" LCD Monitor Resolution 1920x1080 C. Ratio 1000 :1

Please note the power failure (load-shedding) stays for 1 hrs. I need a UPS that can handle my system for at least 60 min. You know my system well now, so I assume you could help me out a bit?

We have quite a list of options for UPS purchase here unlike my power supply unit, but you may ask why I am consulting with you (an expert) rather than those PC selling zombies... here is my reason, that first they would sell anything to a customer without even considering the system and second even if they thankfully listen to your story most-likely they will seal the deal with some untested, under ranged, unreliable yet expensive unit, leaving you nothing but wait for load-shedding to end every now and then.
P.S: Return policy is another issue but its a never ending tale...

I appreciate you help. Here are leading UPS selling websites from my town, http://www.floralimited.com/
http://www.ryanscomputers.com/model.php?itemid=22&itemn...

I am thinking about the first link and APC brand? Is this any good? On line and off line what is the difference?
May 21, 2011 8:14:37 PM

The forum I pointed to before is really the place to get the best opinion. The people that post there are the real deal... I am more of a self-educated journalist type.
It's easy to get an account set up there and ask them. You really would not find more electrical engineers in any one forum anywhere on the internet.

If I had to deal with what you are dealing with, I would get independent from the grid.
I would get some solar panels (they are quite cheap now I think, relative to 10 years ago.) Some batteries and an inverter... etc. It wouldn't be easy for me to accomplish I'm sure, but I would have a lot of motivation.

I know a bit about UPSes, but not enough to advise you. After all, I live in an area with abundant water, abundant dams, and cheap power.




May 21, 2011 8:21:01 PM

Thank you Proximon, you did a great job already, I will definitely gather some opinion from that forum, I will add more details on my workstation building process time to time.
May 30, 2011 8:44:24 PM

Kingston SATA 3gb/sec 64GB internal Solid State Drive
Question is rather it will work on my motherboard?
MSI 880GMA-E45 Chipset - AMD 880G
Thank you.
May 30, 2011 8:55:15 PM

Well, there are many Kingston drives that fit that description. Yes it should work fine.
May 31, 2011 7:23:02 AM

Thanks Proximon
May 31, 2011 5:15:37 PM

QVL stands for *Qualified Vendor List* and essentially is memory (or other components) tested by the motherboard maker and 'qualified' for their product.

As far as the Thermaltake PSU is concerned, once again, you should have no issues if you stay below the 'efficiency' limit.

If you search the internets you will find reviews showing negligible 'ripple' across all voltage rails with their PSUs. The only issue I really have with them is they tend to have more molex power connectors than SATA connectors.

Edit: I forgot to add ...

Your motherboard should support the Bulldozer processor when you are ready to upgrade in a few years
May 31, 2011 7:14:10 PM

Thank you wisecracker for those valuable information, I appreciate your help.

PSU: Tharmaltake or not Tharmaltake for PSU was a mind boggling decision to take, I finally picked Odin Pro. What do you guys think?

Motherboard: Now, the current motherboard I have selected is MSI's 890GXM, as I see they have updated their BIOS. So do you guys think with this I could use Bulldozer processor in future?

Cooler: Do I really need it? Please let me know.

Extra: Although it's irrelevant to add Chasis, keyboard, mouse etc... but I want to make sure that any of the workstation components aren't conflicting, also that if I have picked up the right ones in my budget.

The final purchase date is within a couple of days. So any feedback is precious for me.


Updated Entry Level Workstation. Semi Final Version.
=============================================

[Processor] AMD Phenom II X6 1090T 3.2GHz 9MB Cache [19,700]
[Motherboard] MSI 890GXM-G65 (AMD) [10,900]
[Video Card] VCQ600-PB Quadro 600 1024MB DDR3 PCIe 2.0 x16 [13,300]
[Power Supply] Gigabyte Odin Pro GE-M800A-D1 800WT [9,900]
[Ram] 2 X Twinmos 4GB DDR3 1333 RAM [7,200]
[SSD] SSDNow Kingston SV100S2/64GZ SATA 3gb/sec 64GB [10,200]
[HDD] Hitachi 500GB SATA [3,300]
[Monitor] Asus MS228 21.5" LCD [15,400]
[Chassis] Tharmaltek V6 Middle Tower ATX [6,000]
[Rom] Benq DW240S Sata DVD Writer [1,875]
[Key+Mouse] A4 Tech G3100 [1,125]

Total [98,900]

=============================================
currency in bdt (75 bdt = 1 usd)

June 2, 2011 4:08:28 PM

Ok finally I have finished purchasing my workstation, thank you all!
June 2, 2011 9:32:23 PM

I think you'll be happy :)  Let us know how it goes.
May 6, 2012 10:18:00 AM

It's been almost a year now, my workstation is working to it's full strengths. Although after a week of my initial purchase my PSU was toast, I had guarantee for that, and was replaced within a day. Other than that everything is smooth as jazz.

Thanks to all for helping me out for this purchase.


PS: I got an APC uninterrupted power supply, 1000 WA and backs the blackout up-to four hours. So much load-shedding here :(  but I don't even feel it anymore :D 
!