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magneto

Any good i7 boards that support at least 128GB RAM?

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Hi,

 

Recently I am always hitting my memory limit which is only 16GB and with all the processes running, is not much anyway.

 

I don't want to do a full upgrade but I really want to have 128GB RAM at least. 64GB isn't worth the hassle IMO.

 

So can any Houdini fellows recommend me a solid board that can support 128GB of RAM? I don't have issues with CPU or GFX card. Would you suggest upgrading from i7 2600K? I know it's not great but it's not bottlenecking me at the moment.

 

I am still researching the board but after a quick find, I found this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813130681

 

 

Thanks :)

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Wait for http://vr-zone.com/articles/heres-first-look-haswell-e-engineering-sample/66688.html and get some sweet DDR4  ;)

 

Otherwise yeah, it doesn't really matter what you pick as long as it got what you need in terms of ports and connections and all. From a "real" workstation point of view I don't really now, but for enthusiast builds MSI or ASUS is a good choice in general.

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Thanks Skybar. How long it's gonna be before that's out though?

 

I just did a quick search but it seems like it's not possible to find affordable 16GB memory sticks? 8x8GB already seems overpriced. I wonder how much the new DDR4s are gonna cost? :)

 

Are the new Intel's gonna be revolutionary? I don't really have much faith in the hardware industry more than agriculture :)

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Seems like it will be until the third quarter of 2014, so if you need the upgrade now I'd say go for it. It is the first processor with 8 cores though, before having to step up to Xeons, and it is overclockable. Much like todays Sandy Bridge-E with its 6 cores. It is the first processor to support DDR4 as well, so I'm guessing that will be a bit pricey - like DDR3 was too when it was new :)

 

Yeah 16GB sticks is still quite expensive, and 8GB does still cost a bit. I recently bought two more 8GB sticks which translates to about 155 USD I think.

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Also keep in mind that current I7's don't support that much ram. The haswell quadcores only support 32GB and the sixcores 64GB. If you want more you will have to go for a Xeon.

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Thanks guys.

 

@Skybar: Yeah late 2014 seems kind of late :)

 

Do you know any 16GB memory stick brands? I only saw from HP.

 

@grau: How does the above board claim to support 128GB for an i7 then? I am just asking because I am not good at hardware.

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I think the socket and chipset should support Xeons aswell. And there might be compatible I7's that support more memory in the future.

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Thanks grau, I never thought that board would also support xeons. Is it better to use xeon with a board like that or make a server build like this (for example)?

SUPERMICRO X9SRI-F ATX Server Motherboard LGA 2011 DDR3 1600
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813182331

Intel Xeon E3-1230 V2 Ivy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo) LGA 1155 69W Quad-Core Server Processor
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16819117286

4 x Crucial 16GB 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) ECC Registered Server Memory
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148646

Later on I could upgrade it to 128GB, but by then the prices would most likely be half.

This costs around $1300, but non-server alternative was around $2200, mainly because the consumer i7 CPUs that can useeven 64GB memory are very "high-end", so they cost over $1000.

I won't buy anything for a couple of months but I would appreciate any feedback from hardware savvy people.


Thanks :)

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If you wanted to save some money but still get good performance and be able to handle large data sets, try the i7 4930k with 64GB (8x8GB) and get a 64-128GB SSD to use as swap. Running out of physical memory won't grind the system to a halt with an SSD the way it does with a mechanical drive; in fact, you might not even notice it swapping. Plus 16GB DIMMs are really expensive, and only available for servers (in the form of registered DIMMs) at the moment.

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About the SDD drives that malexander says X 2 could be a cool solution:

At a computer store here in madrid they had a setup with a raid zero SDD.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPuywNBctvg

 

http://www.mountain.es/epages/Mountain.sf/es_ES/?ObjectPath=/Shops/Store.Mountain/Products/OMNS3DE4

 

Well, maybe 2 SDD 64 with a raid zero could be a possible solution.

 

 

 

Mangi

Edited by mangi
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Thanks alot guys. But when you run out of RAM, would applications not shut down randomly, aero turning off and windows getting drawn incorrectly? That's what happens for me but I don't think I set up swapping because I use SSD for the system drive.

 

I assume you guys mean a completely separate SSD for swapping?

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On Linux/OSX, what's referred to as swap is virtual memory on Windows, saved in pagefile.sys on your system drive by default. You can relocate the page file to a dedicated SSD to reduce wear on you system drive (it's a pain to swap system drives using Windows). Just format the drive as usual, then add the largest pagefile you can to it via Control Panel > System > Advanced(from memory, as I don't have a Win system in front of me). An OS cannot access a pagefile/swap directly, it 'swaps' a cached memory page to main memory when it needs it. So it will add some overhead, but shouldn't cause things to redraw improperly or anything like that. With a mechanical drive, the constant and random access of small blocks will slow the system down so much that it feels like it's hung. An SSD avoids this as they can process ~1000x the I/O ops that a mechanical drive can, so it is a reasonable alternative to installing tons of RAM.

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Thanks Mark. I checked mine today and it was only set to use my OS drive which is the only SSD. It's also set to "system managed" which basically automatically sets the pagefile size to your available free space:

 

JKtoE.png

 

When you said it's a pain to swap system drives, do you mean it's slower than a dedicated drive? That's what I figured too. I will get a dedicated one like you said in my upgrade. Do you think it matters to have 2-4x using a raid (small drives) so they are x times faster? I thought it might not matter as the point isn't to reach RAM speed using SSDs, which I thought it way too far out of reach?

 

In mine, when I run out of memory, I don't see the effects you describe, which I have seen before, that things get painfully slow. Or I might experience them briefly before aero is turned off as windows do it automatically to save memory I think, but also some random app shutting down immediately, which are almost always my browser (chrome) and Houdini if it's in the process of continually consuming more memory like when I am playing some animation and the memory increases at each frame.

 

Often times when this happens Windows also warns me about system having very low memory via a dialog box :) That's why I thought more memory would solve my problem.

 

You are right about 16GBs which I could only find as server memory, which is why I wanted to calculate how much the server route would cost. Of course your idea of using i7 seems much more reasonable.

 

Thanks again and happy holidays :)

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Also when I was doing some research online, some people were suggesting used Dell Precision which can take insane amount of memory like this one:

 

http://www.ebay.ca/itm/DELL-PRECISION-T7500-2-X-INTEL-XEON-QC-X5570-2-93GHz-192GB-RAM-4-X-146GB-HDD-/310824816743?pt=COMP_EN_Servers&hash=item485e9a5067&_uhb=1

 

I think I used one of these at work before, obviously not that beefy but it was the same case from Dell.

 

Are these computers any good? 64GB builds are around $1300. This one is double that, but it's 192GB, no joke :)

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When you said it's a pain to swap system drives, do you mean it's slower than a dedicated drive?

No, I mean it is a hassle to replace your system drive with a new drive because the huge number of pagefile writes prematurely ages it. Cloning is the easiest option, but I've run into Windows activation issues with that approach. If the pagefile is on a dedicated drive, it is trivial to replace.

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Thanks Mark, I understand it now. I know windows is very picky with activation stuff unfortunately.

 

What system do you use personally? I imagine you have the best fine-tuned system that provides the best price/performance for Houdini :)

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I have a fairly standard performance build (IMO) - i7 3930K@4GHz, Coolermaster EVO heatsink, 32GB mem (4x8G), Asus x79 deluxe, Nvidia GTX670 (currently; varies with testing, I have a variety of AMD and Nvidia pro/consumer cards), Samsung 840 pro 256GB (sys), 2TB HD (data), 800W power supply, Ubuntu 10.10 64b. That system was close to 2500cdn when I got it 1.5 years ago.

A slightly cheaper build (@ ~1/2 the price of the above): i5 4760, 16GB (2x8G, Nvidia GEforce 760, 120GB SSD (sys), 64GB SSD (swap), 2TB (data), 650W power supply. That's a pretty good foundation for ~$1350cdn. You can upgrade the CPU (i7 4770), memory (4x8G) or video card (770, 780, Quadro or FirePro) from there if you like :-)

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That's a pretty good build. I just checked the board has 8 memory slots, and can take up to 64GB. That's should be enough for a while I think since your CPU also supports up to 64GB. You really know how to put together a balanced powerful build. Maybe I should get whatever you are getting in your next upgrade, with possibly double the memory :)

 

Do you know if DDR4 will change things alot? I read that it's single channel. Not sure what that entails, but I hope it drags the DDR3 prices down alot. I might hold off till the end of this year. So hopefully the prices will be much lower as well as the capability to be higher.

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Hi There Magneto,

Just can across a cool  "top-secret intel server

 

The best thing is to wait a few months.

http://www.tweaktown.com/news/34788/kingston-displays-384gb-of-ddr4-in-top-secret-intel-server-at-ces/index.html

 

http://www.kingston.com/us/community/articledetail/articleid/501?Article-Title=DDR4

 

Cheers

 

mangi

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Thanks, funny I just saw the exact same thing yesterday when looking for whether DDR4s are released. But the question is how much? :)

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