Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question
Closed

M-Board for a workstation with 2 Xeon 8860 processors

Last response: in Components
Share
September 12, 2011 11:36:59 AM

Hello everyone... I know that this is a CPU based forum topic line. But since my question IS due to a particular cpu problem, I thought it be best here.
Admins, please correct my posting if I am wrong.

Alright... Here is the story:
I am into 3Dd animation and simulation as well as modeling and texturing followed by compositing the results into a video.
Now I had initially intended on building a workstation and then a render farm to accommodate my work flow as best as I can (Adding the work station to the render farm as is). But one thing led to another and this weekend I ended up with doing the one thing I thought I would never do: I have purchased 2 INTEL XEON 10 CORE E7-8860 processors from eBay. I cannot say that they were for cheap. But they were definitely not at the "$4060 each" range. So hence the seduction. All in all my math was dividing the price to the threads on the die and extracting possible electricity and board costs for the processors I had had a mind to buy... and it appeared rather affordable.

But then yesterday I ran into another problem... the product being so new and powerful; The internet has a serious lack of support to compare to much more accessible processors. So I am sort of stuck were I am. And none of my prior research is helping me out (Couldn't even see it in the site I use for my PSU calculations).
My biggest problem at the moment is the motherboard. I do not think I can opt for purchasing two more such chips and the only motherboards I was able to find that are compatible were for 4 processors.
Firstly I have to state that I have no idea on whether you can get a 4P board and set only 2 processors. Or if you would suffer from having the two of them different (Pls don't state the obvious: "they have to be compatible with the board to begin with..."). I just couldn't find any reading on this matter and am seriously stuck and in doubt.

(In-case it has an importance for you to help out) What I have in mind:
The graphic card I HAD had in mind was Quadro GTX 4800. I know the Quadro 6000 is a lot better and so forth. But I have been convinced that it would be more what best bang for the buck it asks in compare. I am open to any counter opinions on this matter.
I want a RAID configuration of at least 4 discs (possible 6). And am inclined for a RAID10 setting. Actually looking for 7500 rpm... so thus considering also an open option of 2.5" hdds. I was VERY satisfied with my Seagate Momentus XT 500GB I upgraded on my laptop. But I hear they are not best for RAID setting and I would prefer at least a TB of storage per drive (I am oddly attached to Seagate for all my drives. And I seriously distaste WD... between 2003-2006 it has cost me 7.2TB. And in those days that was BIG storage. They offered new drives for the damage... but in price of losing my data on it. Hate the brand ever since).
As for RAM... the more the better.. but I plan to limit the budget for this to around 800-1000 bucks.
I think I would like to have a blue-ray drive... not going to be too picky on that.. something decent and not fallaciously priced would suffice. Leaving that for last. Sort of the same with the sound card. Waiting to figure out the motherboard first.

The unit is going to be attached to three BenQ 19" G920WA LCD's... and I would like an additional connection to the LG 42PW450 42" 3D Plasma found above the monitors (In case this information is vital for the MB). Actually there will be also a few additional features such as the SpacePilot PRO and gamer keyboard-Mouse constantly connected to the unit... but I doubt that would demand anything from the board other than lots of USB slots... am I wrong?
Additionally I believe I will end up needing at least an 850W PSU... I had a gold certified PSU in heart and have to date never had problems with corsair.


So for short: I actually do not exactly have a budget limitation... but would REALLY prefer everything now on to be as affordable as I can manage. So as open as I am to "The Best"... please keep in mind that I have already rather painfully drained my budget in mind... sacrificing a separate render farm server in result of it. So try to think of what I am trying to do as: "expensive, alright... but the advantages accommodated definitely justify the cost". Would you guys please pass on some of your wisdom/experience to help me out. It would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for even reading...


BlackDidThis
(My apologies forehand for any misuse of English. Has been a while since communicating in written English)


Oh on more thing... All going to be water cooled. But need the waterblocks and tubes only. Going to add them to a gigantic pipe network where the liquid is pumped through copper pipes bent all around 200 gallon aquariums... Best passive heat exchanger system ever.


September 13, 2011 1:37:09 AM

I don't know of any aftermarket motherboards supporting that chip yet but if you find a 4 processor board it will work with 1,2,3, or 4 processors installed. Each processor gets its own ram so if you want 32gb total then it would be 16gb for each processor.
Server boards typically use SAS drives and not sata
corsair makes excellent supplies but server boards are a wee bit different as they will have multiple 8pin cpu connector instead of just 1. You will probably only need 2 with just 2 processors.
September 13, 2011 6:11:57 AM

This alone has been extremely helpful... Thank you very much.

PSU
Yes.. now that I read on it... you were too polite: "Way more than a wee bit different" (to my disappointment).
Couldn't even find a Cosair in Newegg.com :)  ... According to the site Supermicro & Athena are the only 800-900W range.

Does your stating "two being enough" come down to "Can't get away with one" so thus a 800-900W range is an overkill?



The bomb!!!:
CPU-MotherBoard
Quote:
I don't know of any aftermarket motherboards supporting that chip yet...
Wait a minute... have I done the mistake of a life-time? Westmere-EX and Beckton both use the same package to support 8 sockets right? (You can bet there is a panic in my voice... I paid a LOT of money to my taste)
So for example, would an X8QB6 be E7 incompatible?
Where can I get information on that?
I am seriously panicking.



Considering (read=hoping) that I didn't seriously f-Up... and there are motherboards... could you please enlighten me a bit more on the below please?

HDD
Once again your politeness in pointing me out the hdd led me to consider an IBM 42D0777 1TB 7200 RPM SAS 600 Serial. Though I'll most certainly hunt down other options.
I was mistaken by the above motherboard with an on-board Intel ICH10R SATA 3.0Gbps Controller and RAID 10 support. I had no idea that SAS was more common... seems I definitely should choose the MB first.

Graphics Card
My usual practice is a Matrox TripleHead2Go for triple monitors... As I have not yet purchased a GPU that permits three monitors. I have also not yet attempted a server type build... So for three monitors, Am I correct to practice the same?
Would a Quadro FX 4800 suffice/overkill? The price of it is not really in the "low" range either. I would prefer getting away with "enough" and work dominantly CPU intensive and not GPU.


CPU
Now again in relationship to the motherboard... Would it be wiser to get an LGA 1567 DP and upgrade to my current processor?
Would the costs and hassle of "putting it together, dealing with a lady that doesn't even now the model of the motherboard her in-law wants to sell... finding all the pieces and etc." be a lot more expensive on total than to buy lets say a matching blade And upgrading the processors? Or even buying an MP with 4 processors and upgrading only two of them and having different processors work together?
Would this work? Is it even possible? (Or am I making a fool out of myself again?)



I definitely have to retrace my steps... And reread all I have thought I had understood.
Please excuse my stupidity whilst comprehending the data in my research, and try to spare time to again give me pointers if you may.
Related resources

Best solution

September 13, 2011 11:59:03 PM
Share

BlackDidThis said:
This alone has been extremely helpful... Thank you very much.

Your welcome. I am glad to hear you are doing further reading and learning alot.

BlackDidThis said:
PSU
Does your stating "two being enough" come down to "Can't get away with one" so thus a 800-900W range is an overkill?

You definitely cannot get away with 1 cpu power connector. I think 2 would be minimum but that may vary with the motherboard. I know of some motherboards that power 4 processors with just 3 power connectors.


BlackDidThis said:

The bomb!!!:
CPU-MotherBoard
Quote:
I don't know of any aftermarket motherboards supporting that chip yet...
Wait a minute... have I done the mistake of a life-time? Westmere-EX and Beckton both use the same package to support 8 sockets right? (You can bet there is a panic in my voice... I paid a LOT of money to my taste)
So for example, would an X8QB6 be E7 incompatible?
Where can I get information on that?
I am seriously panicking.

And you should be. The currently supported processors are listed right on that page and the E7-8860 is not listed. Once again, I do not know of any aftermarket boards that support that chip. I only know of OEM (Dell, IBM...) systems having support for them. PErhaps you can find a board on Ebay?


**** I JUST FOND ONE****
Listed as New On SuperMicro
http://www.supermicro.com/products/motherboard/Xeon7000...


Even supports Sata drives.

BlackDidThis said:

Graphics Card
My usual practice is a Matrox TripleHead2Go for triple monitors... As I have not yet purchased a GPU that permits three monitors. I have also not yet attempted a server type build... So for three monitors, Am I correct to practice the same?
Would a Quadro FX 4800 suffice/overkill? The price of it is not really in the "low" range either. I would prefer getting away with "enough" and work dominantly CPU intensive and not GPU.


The 4800 only supports 2 monitors,
the 420 and 450 support 4 if I remember correctly.
You may wish to research the application you use most heavily to see if they can make use of GPU acceleration and what impact a 4800 would have on overall speed compared to a 450
September 24, 2011 5:58:56 AM

Hello again popatim...

I feel so oddly stupid cause I had written a reply instantly after your post... Or thought I had had. And I was in fact wondering why there was such silence... Apparently I just pasted it at the answer box and forgot to press "submit". I still have the draft copy of it so my post was something like this:
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
You are proving to be my hero of the day... thank you very much.

SuperMicro
Yes exactly...
This was my find also...

But it is well noted there that X8OBN-F, X8OBN-CPU, and X8OBN-BR1 are for server SKU only.
They have a super-server (SuperServer 5086B-TRF) that accommodates such a board... And as fantastic as it is, the server has much more in offer than I shall ever be needing for the current term, but the board is no-where to be found separate from the server.

Well that's not the bad news yet though...
This is what I have found out further about the chip thanks to the technical support in Holland:
"You have to use a minimum of 4 of the same CPU's and 2 dimm's p/cpu
You can use a add-on graphics card in this system, only remote KVM function does not function anymore when using a add-on graphics card.
"

So I am going to be shedding $9000 for the server (A very good one mind you) and another $8000 for two more processors.
That is a little bit out of my intended price range.
Though I can confess the resulting server being rather seductive.

Maybe I should also contact the American office. But in the hour I had wanted answers, the American office was closed and I had only the European office to chat with.


Dell
I have also found this from Dell computers.
It seems to accommodate the chip-set shall I opt the option.
The good news with this one is that I have been offered the ability to use a single, double, quad or ten chips.
The bad news this time was the inability to purchase the server bare-bone. I am obligated to opt for a processor accompanied. And the processor I must ask for has to be in the E family for the rack to be of any use to me.

I CAN ask for a 28xx set of processors which are the fraction of the price and still in the family.
So that there IS an option.


HP
Didn't have too much luck there... but ends up I am going to go for an HP in much different reasons. I shall be starting to work on a Z800 since the production has to start right off. I am in doubts to s ell my components or to savour them for a futur date. Most possibly I will sell them and end up buying a second one.
As a result I have a budget to justify.
---------------------------------------------------------

For short that is more what what has happened (those that have ever worked in production pipelines for movies could definitely relate to my reasoning). I have now a dual 6 cores instead of dual 10 that I am working with. And the thought still goes to trade the two for a second work station.

I HAVE to thank you for all your kindness and supportive attitude. It has been greatly appreciated and very guide-full.
Thank you VERY much!
September 24, 2011 5:59:27 AM

Best answer selected by blackdidthis.
September 24, 2011 10:53:54 AM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
!