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pc for number crunching

Discussion in 'General Hardware' started by nabuyama, Mar 20, 2011.

  1. nabuyama New Member

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    I need to setup a PC for various number crunching (floating point) tasks over large datasets (>1GB). Trying to decide on which direction to go (amd vs. intel), can you give some recommendations ?

    - Price is not much important if I will benefit enough from what I pay more (but I cannot buy a xeon or extreme edition cpu)
    - I can do a little overclocking but I dont want to spend much time on it (e.g. trying to stabilize the system, using water cooling etc.)
    - Some of my tasks are highly parallel so I can consume as many cores/threads as possible. However, some of the tasks are also serial so I need as much ghz as possible also.
    - I will not play any game on PC and I will not use it for regular things (internet, office etc.).

    Thanks.
     
  2. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    intel sandy bridge has the best comptuational power per core, while the AMD platforms have more cores.

    if you want serious number crunching, dont look at overclocking. instability makes it worthless.


    personally, i say look at dual socket boards. the ability to slap in two AMD 6 core or two intel quad core CPU's could get you a lot of CPU power in one system.
     
  3. mlee49

    mlee49

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    Just wondering if any of your crunching could be performed via gpu? Might help with cost and many other things.
     
  4. nabuyama New Member

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    I think same about overclocking.

    I certainly agree on dual sockets boards, however, especially here in Turkey, it is quite hard to find them for end-users. Even if I can find, they will probably be expensive. Maybe I can find a 2nd hand dual socket server, still searching that.
     
  5. mlee49

    mlee49

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    I believe there is an Evga SR-2 motherboard for sale in this forum. Used might save you a bit, even shipping from US to Turkey.
     
  6. nabuyama New Member

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    Yes that would help a lot. The problem is for gpu I had to redesign/rewrite much of the existing code I have and also I am not very sure if problem/solution fits to gpu domain well.
     
  7. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    those are dual 1366 arent they? powerhouses with 2x i7 950's or something.
     
  8. nabuyama New Member

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    maybe but dont you think xeon cpus are expensive ?
     
  9. nabuyama New Member

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    I am not sure if i7 (not xeon) supports smp.
     
  10. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    i'm not entirely sure what you mean by that, but the SR2 board was quite unique in what it did.


    edit: here

    http://www.evga.com/articles/00537/


    x58, socket 1366, dual CPU, SLI/crossfire stuff thats unimportant to you.

    as they also say on that page, with 2x hexacore i7's you end up with 24 threads total, or 16 with the quad cores. this would give you all the CPU power you need, and plenty of memory bandwidth (2x triple channel)
     
  11. nabuyama New Member

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    says "CPU Support Intel Socket 1366 (Xeon 5600/5500)"

    which is normal because multi processing requires inter processor communication to be able to use on-die cache as in single cpus. desktop processors (maybe even low end xeons) simply doesnt have this ability.
     
  12. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    i'm pretty sure i've heard of people running regular CPU's in these boards, but since i havent done so myself i cant say for certain. i know several TPU'ers have used these boards, so i'll leave it to them to say whats actually possible.
     
  13. Yukikaze

    Yukikaze

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    The desktop i7s do not have a second QPI link to enable them to be used in a dual-CPU configuration. He would have to use Xeons.
     
  14. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    damn. do they cost much more?
     
  15. Yukikaze

    Yukikaze

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    IIRC they can cost around the price of the Extreme Edition CPUs, but I might be mistaken. BTW, the same, I think, is true of AMD's CPUs. You need Opterons for dual-processor setups because you need a second HT link for inter-CPU communications.
     
  16. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    booo.


    well i suppose he can just get a few 785G mATX boards and wedge them into a really large case XD do it the cheap way on multiple systems!
     
  17. nabuyama New Member

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    You are correct about AMDs. As you and I said, multi cpu processing requires things that you dont need to think on single processor environments. So multi cpu processing ability is only put to server grade parts, xeons opterons etc.
     
  18. nabuyama New Member

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    So dual socket is not a feasible option for me. Would you buy i7 9xx (not extreme), i7 2600 or x6 1090 (or similar) ? choosing the intel path (i7 2600) costs me like %40 more. I am trying to do a cost benefit analysis but I couldnt find consistent and enough data. will i7 2600 run %30-40 quicker than x6 1090 overall (considering both multicore and singlecore tasks) ?
     
  19. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    i'm going by the numbers in my head (As in, they could be wrong), but here they be.

    Single threaded performance: the intel will be upto 15% faster.
    Multi threaded: very even, AMD could come ahead in certain tests.

    If you slightly OC the AMD (1600Mhz ram, raise NB from 2GHz to 2.6GHz or so - both easily done on stock cooling) then it tilts a bit more in AMD's favour, since the 6 threads now have more memory bandwidth between them.
     
  20. nabuyama New Member

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    based on these numbers, amd should be clearly the chose.
     
  21. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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