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Desktop system with good parallell processing ability

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September 8, 2011 8:54:28 PM

During the last years I have had a laptop as single computer. I am using Linux on it without any problems, but unfortunately my work sometimes forces me to run Windows, and it really bogs my computer down.

I ought to have purchased a desktop for years ago, but I didn't have the impetus to do so until I read this article: http://groups.csail.mit.edu/rbg/code/civ/

This reminded me about when I was a boy and poked (around) in Qbasic. I dreamed about making such AI experiments, but in those days the nessesary computing power was unavailable for me. Now it might be within reach!

My budget is currently about $1600 (€1200). I would rather buy hardware that give most bang for the buck than hardware that is as fast as possible. I searched on a price comparing site in my country (do you know a good price comparing site that covers the whole European Union?) and came up with the following options:

AMD: http://www.prisjakt.nu/list.php?l=1033565
Intel: http://www.prisjakt.nu/list.php?l=1033831

Since I am going to experiment with parallel computing I thought it might be better to buy a server mainboard with two CPU:s. I thought to buy one CPU now to begin with and the other one later when the price has dropped and my finacial situation is better:

AMD: http://www.prisjakt.nu/list.php?l=1033834 (This mainboard has the advantage that I could upgrade the RAM very much if nessesary).

Intel: http://www.prisjakt.nu/list.php?l=1033549 (Or would it be better to buy a hexacore CPU now and postpone the buying of two memory modules?)

Thanks for your help, and sorry if my English is bad!
September 8, 2011 10:07:34 PM

Kammerbulle said:

My budget is currently about $1600 (€1200). I would rather buy hardware that give most bang for the buck than hardware that is as fast as possible.


I don't see these as conflicting at all.

The fastest processor is currently one of the most cost effective as well. I7 2600 or 2600K should be within your reach, since you do not need much of a GPU. That will give you 8 threads as needed, and be very fast in single-threaded apps as well.

For instance, from PC Look

Board
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_Asus_ASUS-P8Z68-V-LX...

CPU
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_Intel_Processor--1-x...

RAM
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_G.Skill_RAM-8-GB--2x...

Case
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_Cooler_Master_Elite-...

Power
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_Antec_EarthWatts-EA3...

HDD
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_Western_Digital_WD-C...

SSD
http://www.pc-look.com/boutik/Prod_Crucial_SSD-2,5%27%2...

So where does that put you?
September 11, 2011 7:54:37 AM

Thanks for the advice, that would be well within bidget. Moreover a 2600K CPU on a z68 mainbard seems to be easy to overclock, which I would do some day. :) 
!