Current best bang for CPU/Motherboard/RAM (System w High power GPU)

Stringtheory

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Every few years I set up a faster system, and I end up spending way too much time studying specs. This time, I thought I'd prevail on the knowledgeable 'fast machine' gurus here to get a head start.

I'll probably be spending a lot on an Nvidia GPU, as I'm focusing on scientific programming (neural networks), but I'm guessing the system may end up looking like a fast gamer system.

Question is: Which of the current batch of CPU's, GPU's, Motherboards, RAM modules will provide best bang for the buck. I have some latitude as far as price. I'll spend a few thousand, but I don't want to go too far into the 'exotic zone,' given that the system will be outclassed in a few months anyway. :)

I've heard that the Intel Core i7 7820X is around that sweet spot, but perhaps that's old info? Any reason to step up the CPU?

I prefer very reliable motherboards with as many ports as possible (USB, Sata, etc). I'll be hooking in lots of drives.

I'd also like to get an idea of which RAM modules are worthwhile.

I'm sure that many here have set up hot-rod systems recently. What did you end up with that you'd recommend?
 

jay32267

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I'm sure I'll get criticism...but I just went with the 7800X on an ASUS TUF Mark 1 and I haven't gone above 25% processor usage on any game on max settings (games like Witcher 3 etc) and it runs very cool with a coolermaster V8. No temps above 50 C. 16gig of ram and a 1080 with an SSD primary and 1TB mechanical backup.
 

jaslion

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Threadripper is also a viable option and will be cheaper than the 7820x whilst delivering similar performance and not running really hot.


 

Stringtheory

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Interesting comment!. I'm not a gamer; I'm writing scientific apps (neural networks and such), but it turns out that gaming machines are close to what you need to do that. I'll take a closer look at the 7800x. The 7820x has a couple more cores, which I thought might be useful, but of course that comes at a cost.

I was originally considering whether to jump up to 7900 series or stay with the 7820, but the 7800 seems to benchmark close to the 7820: 8% difference if this page is accurate: http://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i7-7820X-vs-Intel-Core-i7-7800X/3928vsm304816

Perhaps I should just invest in more Cuda cores.

 

Stringtheory

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Hmm... I've always used Intel. Concerns about running into some obscure incompatibility. But I'll take a closer look. I didn't think AMD was much cheaper...?

 

jaslion

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Sorry was thinking about the 10 core from intel not the 8 core 7820x. A ryzen 1700 oc'd or 1800x at stock is direct competition with the 7820x.
 

Stringtheory

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Just thought I'd add this:
https://www.pugetsystems.com/labs/articles/Core-i7-7820X-vs-Core-i9-7900X-Do-PCI-E-Lanes-Matter-For-GPU-Rendering-1030/

There's some useful advice on PugetSystems. Someone just referred me to their benchmarks for GPUs (thanks alexoiu), but they've got a range of cool articles.
 

Stringtheory

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Well, you've got me thinking about the Threadripper now. Perhaps that is the way to go for this machine. I was just reading about needing extra PCIe lanes for making best use of multiple GPU cards, and apparently that is one of the advantages of the Threadripper. I'll have to find out how the Intel 7820x series compares in that respect.

---
Update: I just looked at benchmarks:
The 7820x vs threadripper 1920x
http://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i7-7820X-vs-AMD-Ryzen-TR-1920X/3928vs3934
That indicates that the 7820x is 9% faster and about $200 cheaper, albeit with 4 fewer cores and 8 fewer threads.

The 7820x vs threadripper 1950x:
http://cpu.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Intel-Core-i7-7820X-vs-AMD-Ryzen-TR-1950X/3928vs3932
Looks like they're roughly the same speed, but the Intel is about $300 cheaper. (Again with fewer cores/threads)

If the AMD chips are head-to-head competition with Intel, I would have expected the AMD 1950x to be less expensive than the Intel 7820x, unless the benchmarks are wrong.

Am I overlooking something?
 

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