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Is this card compatible with dell precission t3400?

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  • AMD
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Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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February 16, 2013 4:18:13 AM

card is amd radeon hd7850.

More about : card compatible dell precission t3400

a b U Graphics card
February 16, 2013 10:48:42 AM

abhanan93,


There are several concerns to look into when thinking of the Radeon HD 7850 in a Dell Precision T3400.

1. Will it fit physically? My guess is that it probably would, as this generation of Precisions were made for those huge Quadros with the back support bracket.

2. Is the expansion slot compatible? The HD 7850 is listed as PCIe 3.0 and I'm not sure that the T3400- which has a PCIe 2.0 x16 slot will work. By the way, SLI is not an option on the T3400.

3. Is there enough power? AMD recommends a 500W power supply with the HD7850. The T3400 came with either a 375W or 525W PS. So, if you have the 525W PS, you're just squeaking in.

4. Is there enough RAM? AMD recommends a minimum of 4GB for a single HD 7850. The T3400 can uses a maximum of 8GB RAM, which is not blazing fast- DDR2-667.

5. What is the T3400's CPU? These came with dual and quad core CPU's- Core 2 Duo, Quad, or Extreme, and my memory of these is that a lot were in the 2- 2.6 GHZ range.

My guess is that this card- if it would work in the PCIe 2.0 slot would not produce anything like optimal performance as it would be bottlenecked, esp. with a dual core CPU and/or a low CPU clock speed, and the anything less than the maximum RAM memory- which is quite slow. Also, there is the question of the power supply not having much overhead.

The main question is really, what you are using the T3400 for? The original use was of course as a workstation for business, graphics, or CAD. In any of these uses, I'd recommend looking into getting a used Quadro contemporary with the T3400, especially the FX3800 (1GB) or FX4800 (1.5GB) but the most appropriate workstation card is probably a new Quadro 600 which has 1GB memory and only uses 40W. If it's for gaming, I don't think it will be a screamer, but you might look at something like a GTX 260- but watch power requirements.

I use a T5400 with a QC Xeon x5460 @ 3.16GHz, 12GB RAM, 875W PS and with a Quadro FX4800, happily running AutoCad 2007, Solidworks 2010 x64, Adobe CS4, Corel Technical Designer X-5, sketchup Pro 8, Office Pro 2007, and various and sundry on Win 7 Ultimate 64-bit. This series of Precision were beautifully made, but getting a bit outdated and limited, unless using- as I do- software from the same period as the computer! This is also true of my previous computer, a Dell Dimension 8400, P4 630 @ 3.0GHz, 3GB RAM, Quadro FX580, XP Pro 64-bit, 425W PS. Running Autocad 2004- same year as the 8400, Corel Graphics Suite 12- which is 1/5 the size of Corel Technical Designer X-5, Office 2003, and Adobe CS3, it's just fine and for $25. I can change the CPU to a P4 670 @ 3.8GHz. However, if you're using the latest software- especially 3D CAD, rendering, and/or games, a 2008 Precision will not be high performance.


Cheers,

BambiBoom
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a b U Graphics card
February 16, 2013 11:47:08 AM

abhanan93,

Further to the above >

1. Checking, it seems that a PCIe 3.0 card will indeed work in a PCIe 2.0 slot, and comments included, "you'll hardly notice a difference in performance".

2. The power consumption of the standard Radeon HD 7850 doesn't appear to be too high- averages are shown as 87-106W.

3. The GTX 260 can require up to 180-200W- quite probably out of the range of the T3400 PS.

4. The Quadro FX 3800 mentioned uses 107W- about the same as the HD 7850, the FX4800 is 150W- probably out of range.

5. Another good card workstation card contemporary with the T3400 is the FX1800 (768MB) which has 64 CUDA cores and uses 57W. These are $50-60 on eBay- they were $400+ new. A lot of T3400's seem to have been supplied new with FX 1700 and FX 3700 - both 512MB cards.


Cheers,

BambiBoom
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Related resources
February 16, 2013 12:17:13 PM

bambiboom said:
abhanan93,

Further to the above >

1. Checking, it seems that a PCIe 3.0 card will indeed work in a PCIe 2.0 slot, and comments included, "you'll hardly notice a difference in performance".

2. The power consumption of the standard Radeon HD 7850 doesn't appear to be too high- averages are shown as 87-106W.

3. The GTX 260 can require up to 180-200W- quite probably out of the range of the T3400 PS.

4. The Quadro FX 3800 mentioned uses 107W- about the same as the HD 7850, the FX4800 is 150W- probably out of range.

5. Another good card workstation card contemporary with the T3400 is the FX1800 (768MB) which has 64 CUDA cores and uses 57W. These are $50-60 on eBay- they were $400+ new. A lot of T3400's seem to have been supplied new with FX 1700 and FX 3700 - both 512MB cards.


Cheers,

BambiBoom

it means that radeon hd 7850 will work fine in dell precision t3400
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March 17, 2013 4:36:54 AM

Bambiboom, I'm running 16GB of 800 Hynix memory in my T3400 19DLQH1. A08 or greater BIOS is required, and 800 must be ECC while 667 need not be.

New 4 GB DDR2 sticks seem to go at boutique prices, and the $340 I paid was not likely worth it compared to starting a fresh build.

The processor is a Core2 Quad Q9650 @ 3.00GHz. With an SSD carrying Windows 7, it manages a 7.3 on the Windows Joy Scale with all twos: DDR2, PCI-E 2, SATA-2.

I'm sending back my XFX R7750, and I don't know what to replace it with.

abhanan93, Don't use an Nvidia card. They're not compatible with most examples of the x38 chipset, including the one on my T3400 board per GPU-Z with the geForce gts250 that I then pulled. The geForce driver will negotiate down to PCI-E 1.1 when it sees the chipset version. See Nvidia KB Answer ID 2767.

Also, if you go looking for a 525W power supply, don't be fooled by the D525AF-01 PSUs with "T3400" in the ad copy. The harness is useless for a T3400, and it's not modular. You should look for a YY922 or YN637 power supply with a KB500 harness. A third party unit might also work -- the screw holes and case width are ATX standard.

bambiboom said:
abhanan93,

4. Is there enough RAM? AMD recommends a minimum of 4GB for a single HD 7850. The T3400 can uses a maximum of 8GB RAM, which is not blazing fast- DDR2-667.

5. What is the T3400's CPU? These came with dual and quad core CPU's- Core 2 Duo, Quad, or Extreme, and my memory of these is that a lot were in the 2- 2.6 GHZ range.



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a b U Graphics card
March 17, 2013 6:36:57 PM

JimmyJoeLard,

Interesting variation in the maximum amount of RAM used by the T3400 See P 33 of the User's Manual >

ftp://ftp.dell.com/Manuals/all-products/esuprt_desktop/...

"About Your Computer
p 33

Memory
Type 667-MHz ECC and non-ECC and 800-MHz
ECC DDR2 SDRAM
NOTE:
Ensure that you do not mix ECC and
non-ECC memory.
NOTE:
Your computer does not support
registered or buffered memory.
Memory connectors four
Memory capacities 512 MB, 1 GB, or 2 GB
Minimum memory 1 GB
Maximum memory 4 GB for 32-bit operating systems
8 GB for 64-bit operating systems
BIOS address F0000h

>which specifies 4GB max for 32-bit OS and 8GB for 64 bit and that a maximum 2GB module can be used. Are you sure your T3400 is recognizing the entire 16GB? > Perhaps the online Dell manual was for the earliest version?

I agree that DDR2 RAM is outrageously expensive, although I found a way around it- buy used RAM for the equivalent Dell Poweredge server. For my Precision T5400 I recently bought 4 X 2GB Dell/ Samsung for $30, this from a Poweredge 2950. Another thing that shocks me is how hot this DDR2 can run. Although I never saw any thermal-related problems, I started monitoring after a long rendering slog, I once saw 93C (197F) and panicked. However, it usually runs at 65-70C and I saw posts of people with the temperature regularly in the 80's C. I mention this as you may want to make certain that everything in the cooling department of your T3400 is in order. - Now I'm an obsessive cleaner of fans and case grids, and brushing between the RAM modules. I wonder if there's such a thing as "RAM floss"?

You're lucky too to have the Core2 Quad Q9650 @ 3.00GHz. The T3400 could have an 800, 1066, or 1333 FSB and the Q9560 is a 1333 FSB CPU (or if a T3400 has a 1066 FSB, it will run at 2.13). Perhaps the 1333 FSB version supports 16GB RAM? When I see eBay listings for the T3400 I seem to always see dual core 2.0, 2.4's and 2.6's, so you have the hot rod version- well done!

As for the R7750 replacement, the user manual says (p34):

Video
Type PCI Express x16
NOTICE:
Installing graphics cards that
exceed the specified wattage for your
power supply may result in your
computer not functioning properly. See
the documentation for your graphics
card for power requirements.
Supported Configurations:
375-W PSU
75-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual)
NOTE:
150-W PCI Express x16 graphics card
not supported.
525-W PSU
75-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual);
150-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual);
225-W PCI Express x16 and 75-W PCI
Express x16

- so if you have the 525W PS you can have 2X 150W cards, giving a lot of possibilities. I use a Quadro FX 4800 (1.5GB) in the T5400 and that's a very good CAD card ($1,200 new) that runs at about 150W. If you have the 375W, it appears limited to 1X or 2X 75W , but there are still some very good choices in that range.

You state in your reply,> "abhanan93, Don't use an Nvidia card. They're not compatible with most examples of the x38 chipset, including the one on my T3400 board per GPU-Z with the geForce gts250 that I then pulled. The geForce driver will negotiate down to PCI-E 1.1 when it sees the chipset version. See Nvidia KB Answer ID 2767."< ,

However, almost every T3400 I've ever seen in person or advertised has an NVIDIA card > Quadro, NVS, or GeForce installed. My brother's architectural office still uses 2005 Precision 390's- which is the 3400 predecessor- same number of DDR-2 667 RAM slots with an 8GB maximum, Socket 775 with a Core 2 Duo @1.86GHz, 1066 FSB , and his machines are still happily using their original 128MB Quadro 550's- and 2GB RAM on XP 32-bit! A few days ago, I bought my brother's 390 a gift, a 1GB DDR3 Radeon 4670 with 2X DVI on Ebay for $0.99 + $12.00 shipping! Plus I will be giving him the 4 X 1GB RAM modules I replaced in the T5400 and my no longer used copy of XP PRO 64-bit.

In thinking about a new graphics card, for what use do you put the T3400?

Cheers,

BambiBoom

[Dell Precision T5400, 2X Xeon X5460 @3.16 (4-core), 16GB RAM, Quadro FX4800, 2X WD RE 4 500GB, 875 W PS, Win 7 Ult 64]
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March 17, 2013 11:51:37 PM


> JimmyJoeLard,
>
> Interesting variation in the maximum amount of RAM used by the T3400 See P 33 of the User's Manual
>
> ftp://ftp.dell.com/Manuals/all-products/esuprt_desktop/...
>
> "About Your Computer
> p 33
>
> Memory
> Type 667-MHz ECC and non-ECC and 800-MHz
> ECC DDR2 SDRAM

> Memory connectors four
> Memory capacities 512 MB, 1 GB, or 2 GB
> Minimum memory 1 GB
> Maximum memory 4 GB for 32-bit operating systems
> 8 GB for 64-bit operating systems

> which specifies 4GB max for 32-bit OS and 8GB for 64 bit and that a maximum 2GB module can be used.
> Are you sure your T3400 is recognizing the entire 16GB?
> Perhaps the online Dell manual was for the earliest version?

The Bios sees it in setup. The OS sees it in Resouce Monitor. Neither treats it as remarkable.

There's a loose collection of internet discussion on this subject, and the nut of it is probably at

http://forums.crucial.com/t5/Standard-DRAM-Memory
/Max-memory-size-in-Dell-Precision-T3400/td-p/8146

The last post on the page suggests that 4 GB modules emerged only while marketing efforts for the T3400 ended. In that case, it would not have paid to recertify when their focus had moved on to their next entry level workstation. Happily, the Bios was kept current for a while after they stopped selling it.

I undertook this rehab project to better support an XP32 VM guest where I keep a clean workplace env for VPN. I installed Win 7 64, Intel 520 240GB, 16 GB memory. My graphics card interest is a diversion, not central.

> I agree that DDR2 RAM is outrageously expensive, although I found a way around it- buy used RAM for the equivalent Dell Poweredge server.
> For my Precision T5400 I recently bought 4 X 2GB Dell/ Samsung for $30, this from a Poweredge 2950. Another thing that shocks me is how
> hot this DDR2 can run. Although I never saw any thermal-related problems, I started monitoring after a long rendering slog, I once saw
> 93C (197F) and panicked. However, it usually runs at 65-70C and I saw posts of people with the temperature regularly in the 80's C.
> I mention this as you may want to make certain that everything in the cooling department of your T3400 is in order. - Now I'm an obsessive
> cleaner of fans and case grids, and brushing between the RAM modules. I wonder if there's such a thing as "RAM floss"?

I added a 92mm exhaust fan to the square holes grill on the back, behind the memory. I should reach in there and feel it after raising the CPUZ temp (3 of the 4 temp sensors are stuck!).

> You're lucky too to have the Core2 Quad Q9650 @ 3.00GHz. The T3400 could have an 800, 1066, or 1333 FSB and the Q9560 is a 1333 FSB CPU
> (or if a T3400 has a 1066 FSB, it will run at 2.13). Perhaps the 1333 FSB version supports 16GB RAM? When I see eBay listings for the
> T3400 I seem to always see dual core 2.0, 2.4's and 2.6's, so you have the hot rod version- well done10

It's from an eBay refurbisher in 2009 who positioned it as a cheap gamer machine, hence the MSI geForce card. I bought it simply because I had a T3400 on my desktop at work that seemed reliable. That work machine is still running, BTW, after over five years.

> As for the R7750 replacement, the user manual says (p34):

> 375-W PSU
> 75-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual)
...
> 525-W PSU
> 75-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual);
> 150-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual);
> 225-W PCI Express x16 and 75-W PCI
> Express x16

I'm still running on the 325W after I got suckered on the D525AF-01. The correct unit's on the way. It'll have two six-pin aux display card cables, and I figure that'll be good for a 225 watt card if I really want one.

> - so if you have the 525W PS you can have 2X 150W cards, giving a lot of possibilities. I use a Quadro FX 4800 (1.5GB) in the T5400
> and that's a very good CAD card ($1,200 new) that runs at about 150W. If you have the 375W, it appears limited to 1X or 2X 75W , but
> there are still some very good choices in that range.

> You state in your reply,> "abhanan93, Don't use an Nvidia card. They're not compatible with most examples of the x38 chipset,
> including the one on my T3400 board per GPU-Z with the geForce gts250 that I then pulled. The geForce driver will negotiate
> down to PCI-E 1.1 when it sees the chipset version. See Nvidia KB Answer ID 2767."< ,

> However, almost every T3400 I've ever seen in person or advertised has an NVIDIA card Quadro, NVS, or GeForce installed. My brother's
> architectural office still uses 2005 Precision 390's- which is the 3400 predecessor- same number of DDR-2 667 RAM slots with an 8GB maximum,
> Socket 775 with a Core 2 Duo @1.86GHz, 1066 FSB , and his machines are still happily using their original 128MB Quadro 550's- and 2GB RAM on
> XP 32-bit! A few days ago, I bought my brother's 390 a gift, a 1GB DDR3 Radeon 4670 with 2X DVI on Ebay for $0.99 + $12.00 shipping! Plus
> I will be giving him the 4 X 1GB RAM modules I replaced in the T5400 and my no longer used copy of XP PRO 64-bit.

The 390 is pre-x38, and therefore pre-PCI-E gen 2, so unaffected by the Nvidia bug..

This problem came at the end of 2009, after a forceware driver that came after 186.18. There's much more discussion of this issue than about 16 GB T3400s. It's apparently only a problem on a subset of x38 chipset MB implementations. Empirically, I can say that my T3400 is affected. On the other hand, maybe the difference between 2.0 and 1.1 is no worse than the difference between 3.0 and 2.0.

> In thinking about a new graphics card, for what use do you put the T3400?

I want a single card to drive my single 2560x1600 at full screen with superior multimedia decompression and a smooth frame rate. I'm not a gamer, but I collect video clips. The R7750 is fine for work, but mpgs, wmvs, flvs etc. look awful. Maybe I should just use the old Nvidia. But it dumbs down the bus! We have principles.

Cheers
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March 28, 2013 7:39:22 AM

Hi BambiBoom

I'm about to get the FX1800 to go with my DELL T3400, are there any system requirements I need to look out for?

Thanks
V
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a b U Graphics card
March 28, 2013 4:12:20 PM

Von Brntn said:
Hi BambiBoom

I'm about to get the FX1800 to go with my DELL T3400, are there any system requirements I need to look out for?

Thanks
V


Is this card compatible with Dell Precision T3400?

Von Brntn,

In summary, yes, the Quadro FX 1800 would be a very good choice for your Dell Precision T3400.

Besides the proper PCIe slot- which the Precision does have, the important feature is the power supply >

Dell Precision T3400 User's Manual >

http://www.bcomp.cz/soubory/precisiont3400manual.pdf

> on p34 >


"Video
Type PCI Express x16

NOTICE:
Installing graphics cards that
exceed the specified wattage for your
power supply may result in your
computer not functioning properly. See
the documentation for your graphics
card for power requirements.

Supported Configurations:

375-W PSU
75-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual)

NOTE:
150-W PCI Express x16 graphics card
not supported.

525-W PSU

75-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual);
150-W PCI Express x16 (single or dual);
225-W PCI Express x16 and 75-W PCI
Express x16
Connectors"

The Quadro FX 1800 requires 59W and so would work with either the 375W or 525w power supply. In fact, you can, with either supply, use 2x FX 1800 running two DVI monitors. It's a pity the T3400 does not support SLI as the FX 1800 was among the first SLI-capable Quadros- and SLI Quadros are today still quite a rara avis>

"The new range of NVIDIA professional graphics cards includes the new Quadro FX 5800, the Quadro FX 4800, the Quadro FX 3800, Quadro FX 1800, Quadro FX 580, Quadro FX 380 and the Quadro NVS 295."

Here is a very useful Wikipedia page to compare Quadros>

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nvidia_Quadro

Quadro FX 1800 GPU =G94 550 (shader clock 1375) 800 768 MB RAM 192-bit DDR3 38.4 MEM BDWDTH 64 CUDA 59W 1× Dual-link DVI-I, 2× DisplayPort (10-bits per color), number of outputs depending on model, Shader Model 4.0, OpenGL 3.3, DirectX 10.

For some reason, with the Quadro series, the X800 cards are among the best specification. The FX 3800 1GB would be another very good choice for the T3400 and if you have the 525W power supply- you could use two. I am very pleased with the Quadro FX 4800 (1.5GB) which uses 150W- right at the top for power demand recommended for the T3400, and which shares the GPU with the top Quadro FX 5800 (4GB) of that far, far away time of dreams- 2009.

Another good one for the T3400 - is the FX 4600 , which is still 758MB, but with somewhat better specifications>

Quadro FX 4600 G80GL 400 700 768MB 384-bit GDDR3 67.2 MEM BDWDTH 112 CUDA 134W "Chip also used in GeForce 8800GTX, 2× dual-link DVI". - It's just possible, that the GeForce 8800GTX may be the last GeForce that may be soft-modded into acting as a Quadro (FX 4600)- but check that! Anyway, the demand and prices for the GTX 8800 seems to be higher than for the FX4600,..

I've seen a number of T3400's with the FX 1700, FX 1800, and the FX 4600. One positive feature of the FX 1700 is that it has 2X DVI connectors instead of the DVI + 2X Displayport. Just a few weeks ago, I missed by a couple of days, a local Craigslist advert for a T3400 with a quad core Q6600 2.4GHz, 4GB RAM and an FX4600 for $125- a fantastic value. I would have given this to my brother, whose architectural office is using Precision 390's with 1.86GHz dual cores and 128MB Quadro FX 550's running dual monitors.

BTW, checking prices, this time of year, March / April seems to be the worst time to buy used graphics cards, and the best time to sell. I bought my FX 4800 in December for $150 and three months later, March 2013, this looks to be more like $200+. Just a thought.

Cheers,

BambiBoom



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March 31, 2013 10:42:35 AM

Quote:
Another thing that shocks me is how hot this DDR2 can run. Although I never saw any thermal-related problems, I started monitoring after a long rendering slog, I once saw 93C (197F) and panicked. However, it usually runs at 65-70C and I saw posts of people with the temperature regularly in the 80's C. I mention this as you may want to make certain that everything in the cooling department of your T3400 is in order. - Now I'm an obsessive cleaner of fans and case grids, and brushing between the RAM modules. I wonder if there's such a thing as "RAM floss"?
BambiBoom


As for cooling your RAM in either the Dell T3400 or Precision 390, there is an optional RAM fan and shroud that attaches to the power supply (either the 325 W or 525 W).
The Dell part number is CK616.
You'll notice three cutouts on the p/s on the same side with the blue cabling harness.
There be a plenty 'o 'dem dar fans on EBay.

And one other point.
Does anyone *really* know what the difference is between the YY922 or YN637 power supplies?
There must be some difference, else why are there two different part #'s.

I"m looking to install one in my Dell Precision 390.
And I've also found out that 3rd party p/s do not have the cutouts to hook it on the chassis support tangs: only the rear mounting screws hold it in place.

Cheers!
Kaputnik

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dell Precision 390
cpu: QX6700 (2.66 Ghz)
RAM: generic 4 Gb
p/s: PC Power & Cooling Silencer 500W (Dell compatible)
video: EVGA GTX 650Ti SSC 2Gb
os: Win 7 64-bit Ultimate
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a b U Graphics card
March 31, 2013 11:50:28 AM

kaputnik,

Thank you for mentioning the optional RAM cooler for the Dell Precision 390 / T3400 (CK616). The Precision T5400 has a large memory fan mounted at a slight angle. mounted on the back of the swing out HD carrier. I tried several times and with different software to try and boost the memory fan speed a bit, but nothing would affect it.

My brother's office has 3- Precision 390's and I've trying to convince him to change the Core 2 Duo dual cores CPU's @ 1.86GHz to either the quad core Q6600 @ 2.4 or- like yours- the Q6700 @ 2.66 as well upgrade the 128MB Quadro 550 graphics cards. By coincidence, only this morning I had put a couple of GTX 650's (1GB, not ti or overclocked) on my eBay watch list.

I'm curious as to whether you changed your 390 from dual core to the Q6700 and perhaps the Quadro 550 to GTX 650 and if so, what kind of of performance improvements did you have? I imagine the performance would have to be better, but the cost of those changes to a 390 is almost not economical- I saw recently a local sale of a T3400 with Q6600, Quadro FX 4600 (768MB), and 4GB RAM for $125. That's exceptionally low, but separately Q6600's are at least $50-60, the FX 4600 $75-80, and 2GB RAM is $25 or - $150 to $180 - more than a T3400 altogether. This reminds me of people in the UK who "improve" Morris Minors by changing the engine, gearbox, back axle, and brakes,and add full instrumentation and 500W stereos. Perhaps they should've gotten that 2001 BMW 325i convertible for the same price!

Also, as we're on the subject of heat, and you mentioned adding the RAM fan- is that an indication that you changed from a dual core to four core, more powerful video card , and noticed higher temperatures? Much higher? Interestingly, the standard GTX 650 uses 65W while the ti Boost uses 134W- quite a variation for one model.

Finally, I was told that on the T3400, updating to the final BIOS version will allow the use of 8GB RAM. Do you know if that's the case for the 390?

I was wondering if the two model numbers for the 525W power supply are the same part but might correspond to either the 390 or T3400.

Thanks!

Cheers,

BambiBoom

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April 3, 2013 3:29:53 PM


When I bought my Precision 390 (for $90 Cdn) in Dec 2012, it already had the QX6700 cpu in it; the “X” being the “Extreme Edition” with an unlocked multiplier. Hence, you should be able to overclock it.
But as with the majority of Dells out there, there is no provision in the BIOS for overclocking the cpu.

Seems kinda dumb to me, but I guess from a marketing angle it gives the buyer bragging rights.
They can point to the “Intel Core 2 Extreme” sticker on the front panel and hear their friends echo “Ouuuhhhhh…” from about 10 years ago ;) 

With that said, I’m the market for an LGA775 motherboard with an x48 chipset (which is “extreme” capable) where I’ll be able to change the multiplier in a “newer” pc build. But finding used ones is proving to be difficult.

I know for certain there are two (maybe even three) models of motherboards for the Precision 390.
Ones that can utilize the Core 2 Quads, and the ones that cannot.

The Dell motherboard on my Precision 390 is model 0DN075 with an Intel i975X chipset. And the latest BIOS version is 2.6.0. (from about 2008).
That’s something to keep in mind if any one’s thinking of upgrading their cpu.

With a 64-bit o/s, the Precision 390 can utilize 8Gb of ram (4 slots, 2Gb each). A 32-bit o/s has a maximum memory of 4Gb that it can effectively use. Those are the inherent design limitations built into the operating systems … unless of course, you’re running a Windows Server operating system, then “yahh” you can have 4-12 times more ram.
They are a few sites out there that tell you how to switch over your “retail” home pc into a server configuration. But if it’ll work with a Dell is probably a different story.

There are also two types of cpu heatsinks available to the Precision 390:
1. One that is all aluminum with thick vertical fins in a V-configuration
2. One with a copper base and six heat pipes with thinner aluminum fins in the horizontal plane.

Since the QX6700 pumps out more heat, you’d think #2 would be the stock HSF, but as it was it came with #1. I purchased the #2, lapped the base, and the cpu is running 15-20 C cooler.
I saw a video of a T5400 like yours and it looks like they have the #2’s in ‘em. (At the moment, I can’t find the part #’s.)

Aftermarket HSFs for a 775 socket will not properly align in the Precision 390. I’ve tried, don’t bother … darn you to heck, Dell!!!!

As for the two different 525 W power supply numbers, I came across one reference (which I, of course promptly lost) is that one model was made by Delta, and the other was made by HiPRO. Which was which, I don’t know.
But still, the whole setup seems suspicious to me.

The bestest and fastest cpu that can go in the Dell Precision 390 is the QX6800 (2.93 Ghz).
Apparently any Intel chip beyond the Q6000 series will not work in those machines.
I had dreams of installing a Q9850, and they’ve been cruelly dashed… especially when you see the EBay prices for them!!!! Gahaaaaahhhhh….

Ebay prices for some cpu’s are:
Q6700: around $60-80.
QX6700: around $80-110.
QX6800: around $120-150

But from what I’ve read on the reliable interweb, apparently there’s more headroom for over clocking the QX6700. There is a BSEL mod out there that lets you overclock some Intel 775’s, but I haven’t come across one specifically for the “extreme” editions.

As for your brothers Precision 390’s, they’re bound to be replaced sometime in the future, so maybe upgrading the units with a “better” cpu, heatsink, and some performance G.Skill ram might be in the works to *ahem* … “extend their usefulness in a budget conscious manner as opposed to newer, more expensive models”. In which case, when they’re finally junked, he can do a “I say chaps, since they’re worthless machines let’s not clutter the environment by throwing them out. I’ll take them home and donate them to a worthwhile local charity.” … which would be himself :) 

Then you can Beowulf them into an incredible machine and start taking over the world … the WORLD I says …. Buh-hahahahahahaha

As for the EVGA GTX 650Ti SSC 2Gb, I’m quite happy with it.
It’s PCI-e 3.0 Direct 11 capable.
The Precision 390 has a PCI-e 2.0 slot, and it’s purring away quite nicely in it.
And the newer games coming out are Direct 11, so it’s a good fit for future compatibility.
The seller of my Precision 390 threw in a HD4350 for free.

I can play Crysis 3 on the highest settings and I’ve just installed BioShock Infinite and it’s running with no lag. Having at least 2Gb on your video card is apparently preferable for this game.

By in large, I prefer buying older machines and installing performance parts into them with an eye towards future compatibility purchases’.
It greatly extends the machines usefulness; it’s more affordable, and as a whole the parts bring in a better dollar at reselling time.
Not to mention the satisfaction and sense of accomplishment that comes when you research and overcome the limitations of “older technology”.

Meh … but that’s just me.


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April 3, 2013 5:35:12 PM

kaputnik,

I appreciate your detailed description from the X-treme 390 Club. I too have an penchant for getting up the steam in old bangers- I had a Morris Minor with a Weber DCOE 40 in it and put a high lift camshaft in a 1965 Volvo Amazon. I still have my computer from the last Century, a Dell Dimension T700R (1998) and that is a bit of boy racer too- PIII @ 750MHZ (833 max) 768MB RAM (maximum!), a Radeon 9200 128MB AGP, and 30GB and 80GB IDE HD on an Ultra 66 SCSI controller, XP PRO 32-bit. It's surprising how well this computer runs my 1998 version of AutoCad- R14, Corel 5, MS Office 97 and so on- the hardware performs with the contemporary software. To get an idea of how things get reversed in the computer world, the T700R cost over $2,100 and AutoCad R14 was $560. Now the computer is worth $50- and any $299 new one from the office supply store would leave it in the dust, while AutoCad 2013 costs $5,500.

Of course, even my main computer, the Precision T5400 is moving into the old banger realm. But, I haven;y given up and tomorrow I will probably receive my latest nonsensical purchase, an LSI Logic SAS3080X SAS/SATA RAID controller card. This delightful device was used in servers in the obsolete PCI-x 133MHz slot - precursor to PCI-e and originally cost about $500. I think this one can control up to 122 drives- and I'll be having 2. As these were really for servers, there are few computers with the PCI-x slot, so these controllers are amazingly inexpensive today- I purchased a good (I hope) used one for $15. It's lucky the T5400 is such a close cousin to the Dell Poweredge 2950 to have two PCI-x slots. I save on RAM by buying for the Poweredge- it's half price to that asked for a T5400/T7400. By the way, the T5400 uses the same DDR2-PC5300 (667) memory as the 390. Currently, the T5400 reads at 133MB/s and writes at 130, whereas the LSI 3080X "promises" to make that 2.4GB/s. LSI of course makes modern version of these controllers for the PCI-e and where the T5400 scored a 924 on the Passmark disk test, an i7-3960X system with an LSI MR 9265-8i scored 30,051! They must be doing something!

As for my brother's 390's, as I have 4X1GB RAM modules left over from the T5400, I'm determined to give one of the 390's some fizz and today bought as a gift a new Quadro FX 1700 for very little money. Ii was so shocked to see a NOS 2008-era card offered, I couldn't resist- certainly not for $25 plus shipping. Of course, it's not a great card by any means, but it has 512MB, faster clock speeds, and 32 CUDA cores than the current Quadro FX 550s' 128MB, slower clock, and 16 cores. Precision 390's with the Quadro 550 on the Passmark test have 3D scores of 50-75 whereas the FX 1700 machines score 250-400. I'd rather be getting an FX 3800, but in the Spring upgrade frenzy they cost more than the computer is worth- $150-$200.

The other thing is I'm going to be bidding on a CPU and as the Q6600 seem to be overpriced at the moment, I've decided to get start the performance program off with a faster Core 2 Duo, the E7600 @3.06 GHz. I hope I know what I'm doing, but I've been reading that the 390- and T3400 can use any Socket 775 CPU that is 1066MHz FSB. Yes, it's very temping to look at the various 3+GHz quad cores "Q's", but so many series are 1333MHz- no good. There must be 150 models of Core2 Duos and Core 2 Quads. My thinking is that most CAD programs- except for rendering is single threaded- even Aurtodesk Inventor does this, so the faster clock speed may help as much as quad cores- for now.

Then with 4GB RAM, the 3.06GHz CPU, and Quadro FX1700, I'll donate my copy of XP Pro 64-bit, which is not installed on any computer. I hope that might be transferred, but MS may well object. I'll run Passmark Performance Test before and after, and perhaps my brother will see the virtue of some upgrading and the next 390 perhaps will have a Q6700 and Quadro FX 4600 or similar plus 6- 8GB RAM. That's very useful to know- thanks!- that the motherboard model 0DN075 with an Intel i975X chipset can be flashed to support 8GB RAM.

You mentioned heatsinks. When I added the second Xeon X5460 to the T5400, I had to buy the heatsink (SC1430)- and which cost about the same as the CPU! This is similar to your description of 390 HS type "2"- a massive base, and a series of Copper tubes that weave through about 30 Aluminium fins parallel to the MB- it looks like a metal model of an unfinished multi-story office block that would have really massive lavatory facilities. Of course there are two types with the SC1430 part number, the one for the Precision 490 has a diamond cutout in the fins in place of plain and rounded instead of squared cutouts for mounting screw access.

I find it quite odd how much prices for obsolete components on computers of relative little value have increased in the month or so. Perhaps March is "Upgrade" month and everyone is scrambling for the fastest piece that will work in their old crocks. I took this as a cue and today sold my GTX 285 in one hour and quite well. Of course such is my luck, the buyer has zero feedback and may not pay,...

Ah well, tomorrow, I'm helping a friend by redoing her ailing laptop HD- that's the danger of being accidentally confused with someone that knows what the hell is going on!

Cheers,

BambiBoom



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