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Posted: 10/31/2006 1:00:11 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:10:24 PM EST

Originally Posted By Sylvan:
I am buying a computer for my unit that does very graphic intensive GIS plume modeling. My computer guy built up something on Alienware for 8K and I am doing up the contract for it but I want a sanity check. Here are the specs:
Intel Core 2 Extreme x6800 GHz 4mb Cache 1066 MHz FSB
1000 Watt Power Supply
4Gig DDR2 SDRAM @ 800Mhz
Duel 250 gig serial ata 3 gb/s @7200RPM w/ 8mB Cache
16X Duel layer DVD Burner
Dual 1024 NVidia GEForce 7950 GX2 May not need 'these' cards. System won't see very much performance increase over the 512Mb or 256Mb SLI cards already. 20% net gain at most
Alien Adrenalive Video Performance Optimizer WTF is this but a money maker for Dell? You can adjust any/all video options through the NVIDIA control panel
Dual 24" Widescreen Flatpanels w/ HDCP
7.1 Audio (don't need it, but I think at this level it doesn't matter) Comes on the Motherboard is my guess. Don't pay for any SoundBlaster upgrades
Basic Software Windows XP Media (Vista Upgrade) XP Media for a Work/Graphics system? Get XP Professional instead.
If more money gets me more computer, great. But have a hack at it and let me know if there is something missing.
I have heard AMD is better for these applications than Intel. I don't know anything about the Core 2 chips. Intel chips currently have the performance lead over AMD.
I can get more money if it gets me more computer.
This computer will hopefully last about 5 years.
Don't tell me to build my own, can't do it for uncle sugar (though it would be fun to build it myself.)
Thanks


If you're truly doing intensive graphics apps I would strongly suggest a true Workstation like a Dell Precision 490 or similar. They can truly run the big daddies with dual CPU (even the dual chip CPU's) and up to 32 GB ram. XP will only use 2.6Gb of RAM efficiently, so moving to 2003 server or 'gasp' UNIX/LINUX system may be of benefit as well.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:11:04 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/31/2006 1:15:11 PM EST by leelaw]
Sounds good, but who knows if Vista will fuck with the requirements before it is finally fully released.

ETA:

-Get windows XP Pro
-The video card is over the top, go with 256MB
-Look into a RAID 5 or at least RAID 1 setup so you can have full redundancy if anything crashes.

ETA2: Intel is kicking AMD's ass right now. Get intel's processors, unless you're really strapped for cash, then look into multi-core AMD systems.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:11:52 PM EST
I'd really like to see two SATA drives duel. Pistols at 20 paces?


Sounds like it would be a kick ass system, but I can't really say if the AMD procs will do better than the Intel.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:13:23 PM EST
The 'optimizer' is probably a physics card. Offloads some of the graphics processing from the CPU. Not sure if they're worth the coin yet, tho
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:15:18 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/31/2006 1:16:01 PM EST by Sub-MOA]
Wait for vista and the new Nvidia cards. Also DDR2 ram prices are going to take a dive within the next couple of months as everyone moves to 1066.

Shortly before Christmas... if you can hold out for that long.

Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:17:49 PM EST
If this is for uncle sugar, what about using a "professional" visualization system, like a SGI box?

Silicon Graphics Tezro
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:18:31 PM EST
How computationally intense is your modelling? That machine is really a gaming rig.

Does your app support 64-bit and multi-threading? If so you may want to consider something else for the same money.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:19:25 PM EST
Do NOT spend a shitload of money on graphics cards yet. Wait for DirectX 10 cards to come out. They will be much better (but require a lot more power from your power supply).
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:24:32 PM EST
If you are wanting top of the line then you need the 10,000 RPM western digital Raptor SATA hard drives. When you compare the specs to anything else out there nothing even comes close.

I haven't kept up with the latest processors and ram that came out in the last year by why is your processor running on a 1066 MHz bus but your ram is only on an 800mhz bus? The last computer I built 3 years ago has ram running on an 800mhz bus. I can't believe that is still the fastest out there. That computer I built has 1GB of DDR, matched, hyperthreaded ram and the 10,000 RPM hard drive. The box still screams today so you are definately on the right track, you just need a couple tweaks.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:33:00 PM EST
That is a BS graphics design system; thats a Gamer system.
I'd use an entirely different graphics system
1000w PSU? that is way overkill
3gbps harddrives are silly when the drive itself can only deliver 75Mbps to the bus. You'd need like 5 or 6 drives to take advange of that. For disk, look to high RPMs, like Raptors or a SCSI solution.
As has been said already, is you are doing entense graphic modeling type applications go with a workstation designed for that purpose.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:34:56 PM EST
Core 2 Duo is the latest, and fast!! Not sure if that is what what you mean.

If the hard drives are raided you might want to get larger drives.

No network/connectivity?


ByteTheBullet (-:
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:38:08 PM EST

Originally Posted By BB:
That is a BS graphics design system; thats a Gamer system.
I'd use an entirely different graphics system
1000w PSU? that is way overkill
3gbps harddrives are silly when the drive itself can only deliver 75Mbps to the bus. You'd need like 5 or 6 drives to take advange of that. For disk, look to high RPMs, like Raptors or a SCSI solution.
As has been said already, is you are doing entense graphic modeling type applications go with a workstation designed for that purpose.


Exactly. Rendering/modelling/encoding/video editting requires very little in the way of raw graphics power and a whole boatload of CPU power.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:41:22 PM EST
yeah from the way it sounds you need a workstation not a desktop, for a workstation, use the new woodcrest XEON from intel, preferably 2 of them, and for video cards use an nvidia quadro fx line
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:44:54 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/31/2006 1:51:08 PM EST by david_g17]
check out falcon before you buy.

www.falcon-nw.com/

from what i've heard, they offer better components and much better customer support.

(esp. since alienware was bought out by dell)

eta: and you won't be buying a $300 case.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:45:22 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/31/2006 1:45:39 PM EST by fatk1d]
I had no idea SGI was still using IRIX ...
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:48:40 PM EST

Originally Posted By fatk1d:
I had no idea SGI was still using IRIX ...


i had no idea SGI wasn't bankrupt.
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:50:14 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 1:54:04 PM EST
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 2:08:06 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/31/2006 2:09:21 PM EST by david_g17]

Originally Posted By Sylvan:
Another question, how does dual Xeon compare to Core Duo?
I haven't looked at this shit in a few years and I am behind the times.


xeons work better for multiprocessor environments (maybe better FSB?). usually servers.

you probably want core 2 duo (don't even consider core duo). xeons are still built on an older architecture, iirc (less efficient, more heat, fewer transistors, etc.).

eta: episteme.arstechnica.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/77909774/m/706005840831
Link Posted: 10/31/2006 3:57:35 PM EST
[Last Edit: 10/31/2006 3:59:31 PM EST by Landrace]
The Xeon Woodcrest processors are basically the workstation version of the Core 2 Duo, or at least that's how I understand it.

It sounds like a Mac Pro would be perfect you. And yes, you can install Windows XP or Windows Vista on it. It comes with two dual-core Woodcrest processors (for a total of four cores).

For video cards, it comes with either 1, 2 ,3, or 4 Nvidia GeForce 7300 GT's, or an ATI x1900, or an Nvidia Quadro FX 4500.

It has four drive bays, so you can have up to 3 terabytes of data storage. Up to 16 gigs of ram. Wireless, bluetooth.

Starts at about $2100. This is a top of the line machine.

store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APPLE/WebObjects/AppleStore.woa/wo/8.RSLID?mco=4F8E07C4&nclm=MacPro
Link Posted: 11/1/2006 10:42:40 AM EST
[Last Edit: 11/1/2006 10:55:04 AM EST by opie69]

Originally Posted By david_g17:

Originally Posted By Sylvan:
Another question, how does dual Xeon compare to Core Duo?
I haven't looked at this shit in a few years and I am behind the times.


xeons work better for multiprocessor environments (maybe better FSB?). usually servers.

you probably want core 2 duo (don't even consider core duo). xeons are still built on an older architecture, iirc (less efficient, more heat, fewer transistors, etc.).

eta: episteme.arstechnica.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/77909774/m/706005840831


wrong there are actually 2 lines of xeon processors on the market right now

one is the old architecure, runs at higher clock speeds but is actually les powerful, the other is based off of the core2 architecture and is insanely fast.

the dempsey core is the older technology while the woodcrest is the newer

model numbers work like this the 50xx line is the dempsey
while the 51xx line is the woodcrest.. don't be talked into buying a dempsey because the clock speed is higher, the woodcrest is actually the overall faster processor

eta:
dempsey

woodcrest
Date 11/1/2006 2:53:31 PM Central Standard Time

Catalog Number 5 Retail 555



Catalog Number / Description Product Code SKU Id



Dell Precision Workstation 690 (750W - 32bit):
Dual Core Intel® Xeon® Processor 5150 2.66GHz, 4MB L2,1333 T2674 [222-3854] 1


Operating System:
Genuine Windows® XP Professional, SP2 with Media XPP2E [420-4860] 11


2nd Processor:
Dual Core Intel® Xeon® Processor 5150 2.66GHz, 4MB L2,1333 PR264 [311-6280] 2


Memory:
4GB, DDR2 SDRAM FBD Memory, 667MHz, ECC (8 DIMMS) 4G8E6 [311-6399] 3


Graphic Cards:
512MB PCIe x16 nVidia Quadro FX 4500, Dual DVI or Dual VGA or DVI + VGA FX4500 [320-4765] 6


Hard Drive Configuration:
C10 All SAS drives, RAID 0, 2 drive total configuration SASR02 [341-3388] 9


Boot Hard Drive:
146GB SAS Hard Drive, 1 inch (15,000 rpm) 146SS15 [341-3415] 8


2nd Hard Drive:
146GB SAS Hard Drive, 1 inch (15,000 rpm) 146S15A [341-3427] 23


Hard Drive Internal Controller Option:
SATA/SAS Integrated Card - For Connecting Internal Hard Drives SASCTL [341-3435] 24


CD-ROM, DVD, and Read-Write Devices:
48X/32X CD-RW/DVD Combo Drive with Cyberlink Power DVD™ COMBO [313-4295] 16


Floppy Drive and Media Card Reader Options:
3.5 inch 1.44MB Floppy Drive FD [341-3690] 10


Monitors:
Dell 17 inch E773 (16 inch viewable) Conventional CRT E773S [320-1582] 5


Keyboard:
USB Entry Quietkey, No Hot Keys U [310-7949] 4


Mouse:
Dell USB 2-Button Mechanical Mouse with Scroll ELD [310-7959] 12


Speakers:
No Speaker option NSPKR [313-2663] 18


Execute Disable Bit and Service Pack 2:
Execute Disable Bit for Microsoft® Windows® XPSP2 set to OFF. XDOFF [463-9451] 20


Resource CD:
Resource CD - contains Diagnostics and Drivers RCD [313-4143] 21


Express Upgrade to Windows Vista:
No Express Upgrade to Windows Vista Selected NVISUPG [420-6431] 201


Hardware Support Services:
3 Year Business Essential Plan PADP3YR [902-4902][970-1012][970-6580][981-8389][984-2917][984-2918] 29


Installation Services:
No Onsite System Setup NOINSTL [900-9987] 32


total price was like $7400 for this dual-core, dual processor dell
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