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Wajo
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Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 12:34 am

Hey guys,

Through my employer, I'm getting access to a Broadwell 2699v4 chip (22 core Xeon), and I feel I might as well go build a Linux workstation to play around with parallel programming and other scientific computing stuff (I've done work developing circuit simulators in the past). Having said that, I don't want to blow a ton of money on this. Keeping spending below 1000 usd is a must :)

I also have an older Xeon Phi card that I've been trying to play with (from the older Knights Corner generation), so being able to use it every now and then would be ideal (it's a 300W power hog, so not planning on having it running all the time).

So far I've considered:

CPU - E5-2699v4 :)
CPU Cooler - Some ~60 usd Noctua one
Motherboard - Asus X99-M WS (cheapest compatible board I've found that explicitly states that it supports ECC) - 270usd
Memory - some Kingston ValueRAM DDR4-2133 ECC memory (4x4GB) - 200usd
SSD - I have some lying around, but storage is not a critical concern here.
Video card - I have a spare GTX 660, but don't plan to game on this, I may end up buying a 750 Ti or a 1050 (for lower power consumption). Being able to run CUDA is a plus, I guess.
Power Supply - either Corsair RM750x or EVGA 650W 80 Plus Gold - 80-100us
Case - I was thinking Thermaltake Core P3 (since it seems to avoid PCIe add in card length issues) - 100usd

Overall this seems to be in the 650-700 usd range.

Does this sound reasonable? Is the PSU underpowered given the HW? (CPU TDP is 145W if I recall correctly)

Thanks for any input!
Intel Core i7 3770K / 16 GB Kingston HyperX DDR3-1600 / Intel 520 180GB SSD / WD 2TB HDD / Zotac GTX 1060 6GB / Corsair TX650 V2 PSU / Asus Xonar DG
 
Airmantharp
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 12:51 am

I don't see any real issues- may double check RAM compatibility against QVL- but the PSUs you have listed are actually overkill. Just make sure that they support any ancillary connections on the motherboard.
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whm1974
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:27 pm

What are you planning on using a 22 core CPU for?
 
just brew it!
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 3:53 pm

whm1974 wrote:
What are you planning on using a 22 core CPU for?

He answered this in the original post. Did you read it, or did you just stop after the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")?
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
 
CScottG
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 7:00 pm

just brew it! wrote:
whm1974 wrote:
What are you planning on using a 22 core CPU for?

He answered this in the original post. Did you read it, or did you just stop after the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")?



..no, no - it was still within the first sentence! :lol:
 
Wajo
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 8:13 pm

Hmm... interesting... getting the C612 chipset instead of the X99 sounds nice, although since I'm in Mexico it's a bit harder to get a hold of the supermicro stuff. I'll definitely think about it (in any case, I did follow one of the prior recommendations and confirmed that the RAM I was considering is listed in the QVL for that motherboard).

The one concern I have with any of the boards, is that in most cases it seems to take a BIOS update to get the v4 Xeons recognized. I don't have another LGA2011 chip lying around to boot far enough to update the BIOS. How likely is it that recently purchased boards have a more up to date BIOS already flashed in?
Intel Core i7 3770K / 16 GB Kingston HyperX DDR3-1600 / Intel 520 180GB SSD / WD 2TB HDD / Zotac GTX 1060 6GB / Corsair TX650 V2 PSU / Asus Xonar DG
 
just brew it!
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:53 pm

CScottG wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
whm1974 wrote:
What are you planning on using a 22 core CPU for?

He answered this in the original post. Did you read it, or did you just stop after the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")?

..no, no - it was still within the first sentence! :lol:

OK, how about: Did you read it, or did you just stop after in the middle of the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")? :lol:
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
whm1974
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:56 pm

just brew it! wrote:
CScottG wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
He answered this in the original post. Did you read it, or did you just stop after the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")?

..no, no - it was still within the first sentence! :lol:

OK, how about: Did you read it, or did you just stop after in the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")? :lol:

Sorry I've been having a major headache and have been tired for almost the entire week, so pardon me if I missed a few things when reading.
 
CScottG
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:07 pm

I've got a super micro server board, and when I purchased it - it didn't truly support NON-xeons (..and I use an I3 with ECC mem.), BUT it still got into the bios and supported updates from there. Maybe because it's a server board (with a really dated bios interface), that it's a bit more robust getting to that bios interface (..even if it takes a long time to go through self-check to do it).

It's no guarantee of course :oops: , but state-side/California (not India) Supermicro support might be able to let you know about this.
Last edited by CScottG on Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
CScottG
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:10 pm

just brew it! wrote:
OK, how about: Did you read it, or did you just stop after in the middle of the first sentence (where he said "22 core Xeon")? :lol:


:lol:

-this one I actually think I read through the first time. Astonishing really. :o
 
CScottG
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:11 pm

whm1974 wrote:
Sorry I've been having a major headache and have been tired for almost the entire week, so pardon me if I missed a few things when reading.



Sorry about that.. but it was/is funny. (..and I've done similarly before, and that was also funny/sad.)
 
whm1974
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:24 pm

CScottG wrote:
whm1974 wrote:
Sorry I've been having a major headache and have been tired for almost the entire week, so pardon me if I missed a few things when reading.



Sorry about that.. but it was/is funny. (..and I've done similarly before, and that was also funny/sad.)

It isn't funny if you are the one suffering from both a headache and being bone tired for almost a week.
 
NovusBogus
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:17 pm

I'm rocking one of those X99-M WS boards. It's good at what it does, but do bear in mind that it can't handle 8 RAM sticks and maxes out at 64GB rather than 128GB. This is kind of a big deal if you're doing the HEDT thing, but probably not a dealbreaker.

Speaking of, why are you starving the memory? 16GB in an X99 build is like putting a lawn mower engine in a McLaren F1 supercar. Do yourself a favor and at least get 32GB, you'll need it if you're actually capable of loading up 22 Xeon cores. Speed doesn't matter very much, buy cheap from a reputable manufacturer.

PSU should be fine. I run my build on a 700 or 800 watt supply just fine, no OC or ridonkulous multi-GPU setup means you don't need very much.

Don't forget that since it's a Haswell era board, you'll probably have to do that USB BIOS flash thing to ensure that it's capable of supporting the Broadwell-E CPU. I did this on mine without incident (and a nice lady at Asus support confirmed I could before buying the thing) so you should be fine there. You do not need a Haswell CPU to kickstart a X99-M WS.

Do be sure you have that GPU handy when you do the build. I didn't pay attention to the part about not having any video output whatsoever--lazy complacency from working with Intel and non-sucky AMD boards for many years--and got a rather amusing surprise when I went to plug everything in and turn it on. :lol: I had a spare 650 Ti sitting around which did the job nicely until I could get the real card freed up--a 660 is more than enough for a couple of desktop screens and even moderate gaming.
 
CScottG
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:00 am

whm1974 wrote:
It isn't funny if you are the one suffering from both a headache and being bone tired for almost a week.



Hence the "Sorry about that". :wink:
 
Wajo
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:07 am

The only reason for the 16GB of RAM is money. I may follow your suggestion and move to 8GB DIMM's and just buy 2 for the time being, then get the other 2 later on.

The main concern I have about the PSU is due to my Xeon Phi. I have a 5110p model, which draws 225W (not 300W as I had said before), but I guess without a power hungry video card, it becomes a wash.

Thanks for the input so far!
Intel Core i7 3770K / 16 GB Kingston HyperX DDR3-1600 / Intel 520 180GB SSD / WD 2TB HDD / Zotac GTX 1060 6GB / Corsair TX650 V2 PSU / Asus Xonar DG
 
NTMBK
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:58 am

Have you double checked that the motherboard is compatible with Xeon Phi cards? They were notoriously picky about PCIe features: https://www.pugetsystems.com/labs/hpc/W ... n-Phi-490/
 
Wajo
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Re: Need help with workstation build

Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:56 am

It shows another model of the same Xeon Phi family listed in the QVL, and a quick look around the web shows support for "Above 4G Decoding" (the main requirement I've seen for the Phi's), which makes sense considering people may use SLI on something like this, so I'm somewhat optimistic.
Intel Core i7 3770K / 16 GB Kingston HyperX DDR3-1600 / Intel 520 180GB SSD / WD 2TB HDD / Zotac GTX 1060 6GB / Corsair TX650 V2 PSU / Asus Xonar DG

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