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The Doctor
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 9:29 pm    Post subject: Need advice on building a box [SOLVED] Reply with quote

Starting with, my aim is to build a box designed for running numerical simulations (as well as building source code, but I think that goes without saying). Graphics isn't a high priority, although I would like to run kerbal space program and possibly X-plane (thus requiring the closed source drivers). Of course, Linux comparability is most important followed by the price tag. The parts I am looking at so far is

AMD FX-9590 4.7GHz 8-Core Processor
Corsair H100i 77.0 CFM Liquid CPU Cooler
Gigabyte GA-990FXA-UD5 ATX AM3+ Motherboard
G.Skill Ares Series 32GB (4 x 8GB) DDR3-1866 Memory (Cheapest 32 GB I could find)
Sapphire Radeon HD 7770 1GB Vapor-X Video Card

powersupply: whatever 600-700W happens to be on sale.
Case: probably a new full tower, but possibly salvaging an older desktop case.
Hardrive/optical drive: basically what ever is around.

My main concerns are liquid cooling overkill/underkill? I know the amd chips run hot and I don't plan on over clocking the chip. Do I need anything else for a core system?

Thanks in advance for any advice/experience.

EDIT: I'm marking this as solved since the project has moved from planning to execution. Thanks to everyone who posted. What I am going with is the i7-4790K on a Gigabyte GA-Z87-DS3H Motherboard, so completely not what I was originally thinking. I'll edit this again later, hopefully from the new computer.
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Apologies if I take a while to respond. I'm currently working on the dematerialization circuit for my blue box.


Last edited by The Doctor on Thu Jun 26, 2014 7:26 pm; edited 1 time in total
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russK
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have a box almost like this that I can tell you about. I will go into some detail with part numbers and such, in order to help you decide about the liquid cooling, because I am not using liquid cooling, although my CPU may not be as hot as yours. I do have a slew of hard-drives in my box however. I am using mine more as a desktop / general purpose workstation, not number-crunching, but I do a lot of emerging because I am a gentoo fanatic. :lol:

I have this hardware in a Azza Full Tower Case, I forget the model number, they have some nice ones, as do many other manufacturers. The airflow is very good in this case, and I even have an extra fan that I installed behind the upper drive bays. I use bigger fans rather than smaller fans - bigger is generally quieter (due to lower RPMs).
The box is powered by a Corsair HX-750 power supply.

The motherboard is a ASUS M5A99FX PRO R2.0 motherboard with cpu:
Code:
# head /proc/cpuinfo
processor   : 0
vendor_id   : AuthenticAMD
cpu family   : 21
model      : 1
model name   : AMD FX(tm)-8150 Eight-Core Processor
stepping   : 2
microcode   : 0x600063d
cpu MHz      : 3600.000
cache size   : 2048 KB
physical id   : 0


I am using air cooling with a heatsink/fan combo like this (not sure about exact model):
Code:
Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO - CPU Cooler with 120 mm PWM Fan


I have 32G RAM:
Code:
CORSAIR Vengeance 8GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model CMZ8GX3M1A1600C10


I also have a fairly substantial nvidia based graphics card that I guess you would not have, this one is a GeForce GTX 660 Ti based card.

I am not overclocking, and I never have in my many years of computing, nor have I dabbled in liquid cooling, so I'm afraid I don't really know much about either.

If you need more info I can post other details, not sure what else it would help to know, but off-hand I would think you could get away without liquid cooling unless you overclock the thing.

HTH
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russK
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 3:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of course, now that I actually look at the specs on that CPU, I'm starting to suspect you might need the liquid cooling. Holy smokes 8O
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The Doctor
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Of course, now that I actually look at the specs on that CPU, I'm starting to suspect you might need the liquid cooling. Holy smokes 8O
Thanks for the feedback.

Yea, my research does show that the AMD FX-9590 kicks out heat like nobodies business. I gather it is basically already overclocked a bit. On the other hand, a few websites show that it is about on par with the i7 in speed, so even with liquid cooling that should be about $600 in savings.

The Azza look like a great case. Thank for pointing those out.
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Apologies if I take a while to respond. I'm currently working on the dematerialization circuit for my blue box.
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russK
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 3:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Doctor wrote:
The Azza look like a great case. Thank for pointing those out.


Yes, looks like the one I have is the Solano, I've been very pleased with it. It has holes in the back for an external radiator. I had to remove the large fan from the side panel because the CPU heatsink was interfering. That's why I added a fan behind the drive bays. Plus how can you go wrong with all those drive bays?! :)
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 5:07 am    Post subject: trying to build same cpu Reply with quote

I tried to do a build with the same processor over the weekend using a thermaltake air cooled fan on an asus sabretooth. This was my first attempt at using something other than a bundled fan setup with an amd processor and the jury is still out. I'm not getting to post as the box shuts down after about 15 seconds after powerup. It might be my amateur efforts at spreading the thermal lube, but that fan rig is gi-normous. Once the memory is in, it can't come out without removing the fan.

I've since proved it isn't the 32gb of ballistix memory since that passed memtest just fine in another box. I'll make another attempt probably this weekend when I get the time. Most of my purpose for this was replacing a 4x3tb array that's a couple of years old and has developed a few bad blocks here and there. The fresh set of 4x4tb drive and the new case got a transplant from one of my slightly older fx8350 bulldozer based mobo's instead.

We seem to have similar taste in graphics cards. I picked up a Sapphire R9 270 (Pitcairne) to go with this, but that ended up in the bulldozer case as well. It was quite a bit quieter than the Bonaire class card it replaced in there. I may end up picking up another one and taking the Bonaire into work to replace a slightly long in the tooth Quadro card in an HP Z800 which will then go into a HP POS class "corporate desktop" which is a Trinity (ok) but the bastards only sprung for the cheapest two core version. It's a bit pokey for all of the $50 or profit margin that HP gained by cutting corners and not installing the higher end quad Trinity.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 5:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, that is a surprise. Looking at an i7-4790K with an ASRock B85 Pro4 ATX LGA1150 Motherboard includes an on board video card and squeaks in at under $850 (compared with ~1400). 8O

And here I thought AMD would be the cheap way to go...
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Apologies if I take a while to respond. I'm currently working on the dematerialization circuit for my blue box.
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pa1983
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you play KSP you want THE fastest per core performance you can get. Thats intel nothing else and that comes from an old AMD fan.
The FX-9590 is 220W TDP! Not even my i7 3930K @ 4Ghz gets up to that, about 180W TDP, its pretty easy to calculate.

I dont think you save anything going the AMD router on a 9590. One thing would be the FX-8320 it can be had for a bargain.

But the FX9590 on works with motherboards that have the needed VRM to power it, so you MUST check that the board supports it and I do think those boards will end up a bit more expensive.
And there realy is not much of an overclocking margine on the 9590 ethere.

Also you need som decent cooling, AMD is about to release a FX-9590 with stock water cooling kit. But even then its a LOT of heat, the power bill alone will over time eat up the few bucks you might save then you have the Noise. Those small liquid cooling kits are not very silent. I my Self Use a NH-D14 with my i7 and a TY 140 fan. Beats any of those water cooling kits hands down. Atm I have 369rpm on one of the most quiet 140mm fans made. Load I hav around 700rpm on the fan at 180W TDP. Something like that is required for a FX-9590 and it will set you back around 100 bucks, water cooler or tower cooler.

Since your ready to spend the money on a FX-9590 I would sugest the new i7 4790K. Clocks in at 4Ghz stock and has turbo to 4.5Ghz if I recall and cant continuously run at 4.2Ghz with loads on all cores. Thats a fast stock processor, the fastest quade core out there. Intel have an IPC advantage that is pretty big so even at lower clocks intels Core architecture beats Bulldozer in most cases.

Dont forget the FX-9590 is not an 8 core processor, etch module is realy one core. For a CPU to be a self contain unit it needs a Fetch, decoder, ALU, some registers like IR, ACC, PC. FPU is not needed since that can be emulated in software. The FX processors modules shares Fetch, Decoder and realy just clones the ALU's and registers. The New Steamroller architecture used in the latest APU's etch core has its own decoder to, allowing etch core to decode up to 4 instructions unlike Bulldozer and Piledriver that FX processors are based on where on module shares a 4 wide decoder.
So a module in a FX processor has no higher IPC then a Core in an intel i5 or better CPU.

Steamroller in my book etch core is actually a CPU unlike Bulldozer and Piledriver. So those 4 cores APU's based on steamroller are more true 4 core processors then previous once.
The fact that they share Fetch might not be a bad idea so I tend to overlook that.

AMD's approach is called CMT or Cluster Multi Threading. Etch set of ALU's (two in etch set and core per module) can run one thread. Problem is one thread cant use all ALU's.

Intels approach is one core that is very wide and then use SMT (simultaneous Multi Threading) to allow two threads to share resources in a core an instructions from both threads can be run at the same time to. So in the end Intels approach allows a thread in theory to use all the cores resources while AMD limits etch thread to half the ALU's and some other resources.

The fact is that Intel has just as many Execution units per core as FX processor has per module so thats why a FX processor module preforms some times worse some times better then intels i5 and i7 processors.

But you have to ask your self is it worth spending the same money on a 220W CPU that at best might match an i7 4790K that uses 40% of the power for the same performance, where you can get cheaper cooling for it also take in to account that AM3+ platform is pretty dated. Where intel has PCI-E 3.0 built in to the CPU and AMD has no new AM3+ chipset supporting PCI-E 3.0.
Been some boards out claiming support but realy dont know whats that about. Suspect they combine 32x 2.0 to 16x 3.0 with a bridge some how, after all 32x is allowed with in the PCI-E standard.

One can argue that intels chipset are not very well developed now days, I think intel is on the cheap side there but its simple business fore them since AMD has nothing for AM3+ that comes close now days.

As I sad Im an old AMD fan, been around since Athlon and Duron (Actually started out using K6-2 processors), been running dual opteron rigs with gentoo for years. I still have two AM3 systems, but realy AMD is no longer very attractive. I do like there APU ideas and HSA concepts but realy not very useful for most to day. In a perfect world maybe but where not there yet.

If you realy want a FX processor try to get the best possible prices ona FX8350 or FX-8320. If not I suggest taking a a look at intel again especially if you are concerned with noise. Cooling away 220W silently is perfectly possible but it will cost more and be harder to do.

My parents run a i7 3770 77W TDP, easy as hell to cool even in a small ITX system, close to noiseless as you can get with fans and its faster then most FX processors.

And if your a KSP fan FX processors are realy that worst option, that game uses one core to 100% and a second on at about 20%. All the Physics runs on the main thread so yea intel processors liek i5 have a big advantage there. FX processor strength is multi threaded and KSP is like a game from 2001 in that regard.

Its sad that AMD wont give out a Steamroller FX processors for AM3+ or better yet get a new socket out there and new chipset and refresh the high end AMD platform.
But AMD is talking about a brand new architecture for 2016 to replace Bulldozer. After all it never was the success many of us had hoped for.
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WS: i7 3930K@4Ghz, 32Gb ram, 256Gb NVME & 128Gb sata SSD, GTX780 3Gb & RX 460 2Gb
NAS: i3 4360 3.7Ghz, 20Gb ram, 256Gb SSD, 42Tb HDD, NIC: Intel 2x1Gbit
ROUTER: J1900 2Ghz, 8Gb ram, 128Gb SSD, NIC: 2x1Gbit, WIFI: Atheros AR9462 and AR5005G


Last edited by pa1983 on Wed Jun 25, 2014 8:55 pm; edited 2 times in total
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The Doctor
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 8:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your input.

That one about the i7 hit me last night. I repriced a computer around the new i7 and found that for the performance I was after I could cut the cost from about $1400 to $600-700.
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Apologies if I take a while to respond. I'm currently working on the dematerialization circuit for my blue box.
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pa1983
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25, 2014 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yea I would easily go with an i7 to day or an i5. Its hard to justify the small saving on a FX processor considering that the saving often is so small you end up wasting it on cooling or just the power bill. Plus the platform is dated and AMD dont seem very interested in it any more.
There FM2 socket is more interesting for budget builds for example since they keep developing for it.

Also the New Haswell processors supports AVX2 so there about twice the floating point performance per core compared to previous i5 or i7 processors or AMD FX processors. Also remember FX shares FPU for AVX so to day a modern i7 4790K for example one core has the same FPU performance using AVX2 as two modules or 4 cores in a FX processor at the same clock and then I know that intels FPU doing AVX is often more efficient since AMD seems to lose some due to the shared design. Now if AVX and AVX2 is not important to you its less relevant but if your gonna code stuff that is floating point intensive it might be good to keep in mind.

AMD seems to show very little interest in there AM3+ line of processors and chipset. Most likley they just trying to recoup there investment until they have a new architecture ready.
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NAS: i3 4360 3.7Ghz, 20Gb ram, 256Gb SSD, 42Tb HDD, NIC: Intel 2x1Gbit
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:43 am    Post subject: I'm such a ditz Reply with quote

When I first pulled the thermaltake out of the box, I noticed the "remove before use" tape on the head but then promptly forgot about it as the logistics of radiator and fan arrangement and what needed to go in/plug in first distracted me. It wasn't until I went to bed last night and was lying there that I remembered about the damn strip! So, tonight, off came the strip, off came the grease, on went another "x marks the spot" of grease and now sheeza running fine. I actually hear more noise from my stock fx8350 cooler than I do from this thermaltake running at full speed.

If I can trust the BIOS, it reported the CPU running at about 40C with the fans supposedly spinning at about 1600rpm.
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pa1983
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 5:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My Athlon II X2 temps have always been funny.
Motehboard ses 33C on teh CPU and the K10 sensor reports 15.2C, yea its hardly running at 15C in summer heat.
Even back when I had Opteron 244, 265 and 280 they where funny and changed with bios upgrades etc so they could never be trusted.

Now days I think AMD builds the sensor in teh new CPU's and software to show how much thermal room theres left before "throttling" at least on there latest CPU's and software under windows from what I read recently.

The good old way of checking if a AMD cpu is fine and this was what AMD recommended not many years ago was simply put fingers to the base and if you can hold them there its fine assuming thermal past is properly applied. So thats what I do on my AMD3 systems and systems in general. Pretty easy with a tower cooler.

You can install sensors under portage, also make sure the kernel has the proper modules then use prime95 to stress it a bit to see what happens.
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WS: i7 3930K@4Ghz, 32Gb ram, 256Gb NVME & 128Gb sata SSD, GTX780 3Gb & RX 460 2Gb
NAS: i3 4360 3.7Ghz, 20Gb ram, 256Gb SSD, 42Tb HDD, NIC: Intel 2x1Gbit
ROUTER: J1900 2Ghz, 8Gb ram, 128Gb SSD, NIC: 2x1Gbit, WIFI: Atheros AR9462 and AR5005G
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would be curious to know what you decide and how it works out.
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The Doctor
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 29, 2014 1:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I just got the new box online after playing a few days of franticly trying to get the wireless cards working. This is the first time the system rescue CD hasn't had the appropriate drivers 8O

Anyway, the final build is as follows:
CPU: i7-4790
motherboard: Gigabyte 297X-UD3H
CPU cooler: Hyper 212
Ram: 16 GB Patrot Viper DDR3 Ram (with room for 16 more)
1 TB hard drive
65 GB Sandisk SSD
Asus Blu-ray writer (lifted from my previous desktop)
realtek wireless card scavenged from an old (xp-era) desktop Unfortunately, it doesn't really have much range.
Corsair TX650M Power supply
Corsair Carbide 300R case

The case itself is very well organized and the fans are almost silent. When I first turned it on I though they weren't working. The CPU cooler and case combo are efficient enough I haven't seen the CPU temps go above the low fifties.
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depontius
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In a similar vein, I've been planning a new box, and the parts are in the basement. Also similarly, I hope to be doing some simulation on this machine, but not KSP. In fact at some point I'll probably be writing the simulator myself.

So this is an "experimental" machine, to see if HSA is really all it's cracked up to be. I looked around at benchmarks, and the Kaveri is a decent, though lackluster performer on ordinary workloads. But on the few HSA benchmarks it screams, and simulation should be an HSA-happy task.

So we'll see. First I have to get through the build and then a UEFI install.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 09, 2014 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

depontius wrote:
and then a UEFI install.

It's what that would worry me the most. Never done one, but it looks like a pain to use UEFI (again, never really read doc, but from what i see from users posts it look like an hard task). I should check doc&hint part to see if anyone make a "sane" doc to do that.
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