A $5300 PC Challenges A $4.6 Million Supercomputer

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dittopb

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I think the reason why they choose MSI K9A2 Platinum board is the PCIe slot spacing. I checked Asus and Gigabyte boards with quad PCIe 2.0 support and found to be unevenly spaced and would be hard to fit 4 dual-slotted GPUs.
 

dobby

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interesting choice of CPU, i know that this doesnt use the CPU directly for it Processing power, but you would think that they would go the full hog and use a skull trial system
 

hughyhunter

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I agree... I'm interested to hear a reason why. Also... I didnt know there was support for four GX2's. How do you run 4 of them? Their is only 1 connector!
 

khaydin

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[citation][nom]hughyhunter[/nom]I agree... I'm interested to hear a reason why. Also... I didnt know there was support for four GX2's. How do you run 4 of them? Their is only 1 connector! [/citation]

They're not setup in SLI since the motherboard and CUDA doesn't support SLI. So if they were doing 3dmark only 1 of those 4 would be getting benched.
 

navvara

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[citation][nom]customisbetter[/nom]how does one, let alone 4 9800 gx2s get 12k in 3dmark?[/citation]

They are not running SLI. They are just plugged in the PCI-X and accessed by the app indepentently.

 

drho

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Higher memory bandwidth with the AMD versus Intel until Intel implements a real memory bus. CPU memory bandwidth to GPU memory can be a significant factor.
 
gawd MSI, atleast the $4.6M will last longer then a few months :D

skulltrail with the quad channel memory would have been a wiser and more reliable choice although the cost would have become alot higher, and when CUDA starts to support SLi, perhaps the motherboard choice would come back to bite them.
 

martel80

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[citation][nom]navvara[/nom]They are not running SLI. They are just plugged in the PCI-X and accessed by the app indepentently.[/citation]
PCI-X is something completely different from PCI-express.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PCI-X

And if CUDA doesn't support SLI, I wonder if this computer even uses both parts of the GX2 since this single card already runs in SLI.
 
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It can. CUDA API will reports 2 GPUs presence when a 9800 GX2 is attached.
 

navvara

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[citation][nom]ismailfaruqi[/nom]It can. CUDA API will reports 2 GPUs presence when a 9800 GX2 is attached.[/citation]

My point exactly. The reason they use Nvidia video cards on intel chipsets is the extra pci-x (or express who cares about wording) lanes. CUDA supports multiple GPU's (it will detect all compatible Nvidia GPU's attached to a system) but not SLI.

Although this news is interesting I wonder why they didn't use tesla? It would certainly scale better with tesla solutions being rack mountable (though more expensive to get the same crunching power).
 

wild9

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Quite an astonishing story, in my opinion. A super-computer in your home..now just imagine a whole planet full of these systems working on cancer cures. I'm sure there are some applications that need more memory than a desktop can handle, but this is astounding.
 

hughyhunter

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I dont get it... what's the difference?
 

Jaevric

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Is it bad that my first thought was "I hope they bought EVGA so they can step-up in a couple of months?"

Still, definitely really cool.
 

LkS

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We as enthusiasts should be proud that our constant upgrading in search of ultimate gaming performance has funded the development of consumer affordable technology so advanced that it can benefit important applications such as this.
 

mantech

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Well it is very interesting to know the facts about this Fastra motherboard
I believe there are quite few other board out there that haven't been tested for various combination. Is impresive how technology has evolved over time. With such tech so advance we might some day have a Super Desktop PC in our Home.
 
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Why the inherent bias against AMD? They chose AMD to save money? So instead of paying an outrageous $5500 for a Core2Quad system, they paid a more reasonable $5300 for a Phenom CPU + mobo? LMAO. As the above poster said, AMD have had an advantange on memory and system bandwidth ever since the day the Athlon 64 first came out. This is exactly why there are so many more supercomputers running Opterons than Xeons...
 
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