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Recommendations for a 'mobile workstation'

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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December 2, 2011 6:16:31 PM

I'm looking for a high powered laptop for scientific computing with the following requirements:

1. At least 1 (dual preferred) Nvidia 560M or 580M cards with minimum 2Gb memory (each).
2. As much RAM as humanly possible... 32GB might be enough, but I would prefer 48Gb+ (64+ would be ideal).
3. Room for at least 3 Hd's. Built in RAID would be nice, but not necessary.

I'm aware of the typical limit on laptop memory is 32 GB (4x8), but I'm hoping that there is a board out there that can take more. I'm not really in the loop when it comes to which brands of laptop to look at, so I'm hoping someone can at least point me in the right direction.

December 2, 2011 7:52:44 PM

Bringing out the big guns...

Technically no longer a laptop, but if you need the features you're asking for... "mobile workstation" it is...
http://www.nextcomputing.com/products/portable-workstat...

Tech Specs
The NextDimension Evo features our flexible, modular FleXtreme™ internal architecture that allows you create the perfect solution for your needs.

Core options include:
•Up to (2) Quad- or Six-Core Intel® Xeon® processors
•Up to (4) full-length, full-height PCI-X or PCI Express expansion slots
•Up to 96GB RAM
•On-board or PCI-X/PCIe-based RAID 0 / 1 / 0+1 / 5
•Up to (4) swappable and bootable hard drives:
- SATA or SAS hard drives up to 1TB 7200 RPM each
- SAS hard drives up to 300GB 15K RPM / 600GB 10K RPM each [Note: SAS drives cannot be hot-swapped]
- Solid state SATA drives to 600GB each
•8x Double-layer DVD±/RW or Blu-Ray R/RE
•Wide range of graphics cards options from NVIDIA® and AMD
•Multiple terabytes of internal RAID storage

Optional Equipment
•Lightweight, portable Clip-On Display - Up to (2) additional displays per system
•Rolling transit case with telescoping handle and wheels
•Rugged hard case (MIL-STD-2073)
•Secure wireless keyboard with integrated trackball
•External battery pack

No price listed, but I would guess starting around $4K
a b D Laptop
December 2, 2011 9:30:11 PM

There are many mobile work station solutions out there. But it really depends on your budget. Eurocom makes solid & cool solutions.
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December 2, 2011 10:57:09 PM

perfectblue said:
There are many mobile work station solutions out there. But it really depends on your budget. Eurocom makes solid & cool solutions.


Agreed. There are lots of "mobile workstation" - class laptops available. Getting a mobile machine that can use more than 32GB of RAM is what makes this an interesting problem, as the OP mentioned.

December 2, 2011 11:57:58 PM

holy crap. Those nextcomputing machines are amazing. Not quite as mobile as I was looking for, but it's actually exactly what I was after.

Those Eurocom machines look good too. I'm quickly finding that several companies sell a laptop with 32 Gb of memory and the right g-card, but it looks like they are all rebadging the same machine. Too bad I can't find a machine with 32 Gb or memory that takes dual GPU's.

I should also add my budget is around $5k but may be able to go as high as $7k if needed.
December 6, 2011 5:56:21 PM

I got in contact with the NextComputing guys, their price-range is from $4500 up... way up.

The single 6-core xeon, 64GB system I asked about was going to start at about $9,000. Apparently they use low-profile 8GB DIMMs, unless you get a dual-socket machine, which has more DIMM slots, so they can use the less-expensive lower-density sticks...

Good luck!
!