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i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620

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Andy Josephi7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 17, 2010 at 4:30:41 am

Hi,

I'm assembling a self-built workstation only for After Effects CS3.
Please advice, out of these two setups which one will be faster for AE ?

i7-980X, 3.33 GHz, Extreme Edition (12MB Cache 6.40 GT/s Intel QPI)

v/s

Dual Xeon E5620, 2.4 GHz (12MB Cache 5.86 GT/s Intel QPI) - Please note: Its x2 Xeons


Thanks
Andy


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Andy JosephRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 17, 2010 at 6:28:51 am

Need Expert's Advice. Someone Please Help


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Jon BaggeRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 17, 2010 at 8:49:56 am

Firstly how much memory do you plan to buy?

Are you considering upgrading to CS5? It will be much better at handling more memory.

If you're self building you should look at memory speeds as well as processor speeds. If you can't have both, I'd probably go for faster memory before faster processor (although the two are linked of course).

In most cases the i7 is going to be faster since you won't always be in a position to use the extra cores, and the Xeons only have 2 more in your example anyway. But a Xeon motherboard is much more likely to support lots of memory. So that's worth checking out too.

You should be looking at 12Gb minimum. 16/24 is nice..



--------------
Jon Bagge
Editor - London, UK
Avid - FCP - After Effects


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Andy JosephRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 17, 2010 at 5:32:36 pm

Hi John,
Thanks for your time.

Yes, I'll be buying 16GB DDR3. Moreover if i go with i7 then Intel WX58BP & DX58SO don't support more than 16 GB RAM.

CS5, may be yes but after sometime.

I'm still confused between the two. Both the setups are costing me almost same price. Ok tell me does x2 Xeons means total of 4.8 GHz (8 cores) also cache & FSB will be x2. Now i7 even if overclocked to 4 GHz is still lower than Dual Xeons. uff i cannot decide. I need help!

Ok simple & straight. What would you be choosing ?


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Jon BaggeRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 18, 2010 at 12:55:41 pm

Yes, I'll be buying 16GB DDR3. Moreover if i go with i7 then Intel WX58BP & DX58SO don't support more than 16 GB RAM.


16Gb sounds good. But it's a common limitation with the 'consumer' range of motherboards that you haven't got more than 3 or 4 memory slots. Not sure, might even be a limitation of i7 as well.

CS5, may be yes but after sometime.


With CS3 you'll be limited to 4Gb per core.

I'm still confused between the two. Both the setups are costing me almost same price. Ok tell me does x2 Xeons means total of 4.8 GHz (8 cores) also cache & FSB will be x2. Now i7 even if overclocked to 4 GHz is still lower than Dual Xeons. uff i cannot decide. I need help!


You can't multiply core frequencies like that. With the Xeon you'll have 8 cores running at 2.4GHz, and with the i7 you'll have 6 cores running at 3.33.

For a lot of things you'll only be able to use a single core, so a higher speed is good. To utilize the extra cores you'll need to turn on multiprocessing in AE (Which doesn't always work for everything) and have enough memory for all the cores.

I know on some workstations the two Xeon's will have their own memory controllers and can access memory seperately which will make them use memory more effectively. Not sure if this applies to all Xeon setups or how much of a bonus it is.

Ok simple & straight. What would you be choosing ?


Personally I'm about to buy a new setup myself and will be going for x2 Xeon maybe the 5650 (which is 6 core). I prefer workstations as they are very solid and reliable and I have lots of options for memory. I'll probably get 24Gb and will still have slots to spare for future upgrade.

Right out of the box I suspect the i7 will be faster for most things. Although if you can turn on hyperthreading and have enough memory for all 16 threads on the Xeons they should beat the i7.
A little bit further down the line the Xeons will enable you to add more memory, plus possibly an upgrade to 6 core Xeons, or maybe the next generation whatever that may be.

So tough call I guess. Actually I just googled i7-980 vs E5620 and came up with this: http://www.overclock.net/general-processor-discussions/697081-980x-2-x-e562... .
They say to go for the 5620, but they're planning on overclocking. If you're comfortable with that you could maybe squeeze more out of the 5620.

Maybe somebody else has an opinion too?



--------------
Jon Bagge
Editor - London, UK
Avid - FCP - After Effects


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Andy JosephRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 18, 2010 at 7:51:18 pm

Thank you so much for your input, John. Just before your last post i finalized X5650, what a coincidence!

The reason : I'm impressed with the power of single i7-980X but i don't want to restrict myself to a single processor. May be upgrade to DUAL PROCESSOR is required in future, which isn't possible with i7 at present.

ALTERNATIVE: Only X series of XEON 5600 can compete with i7-980X. Also I have heard that both have same architecture, techincally both have 12M cache, 6.4 GT/s QPI & Clock Speed 3.33 GHz if you go with X5680. But being XEON, X5680 cost $700-800 more than i7. So i decide to go with SINGLE X5660 or X5650 as of now & upgrade later with another X5680 (if Compatible) when price come down.

i7-980X 3,33Ghz = $999 (Cannot be upgraded)
X5650 2.66 Ghz = $996 (Can be upgraded to DUAL processor)

BENCHMARKS: http://www.cpubenchmark.net/index.php
SINGLE i7-980X gets score of 10,148
SINGLE X5680 gets score of 10,538
SINGLE OVERCLOCKED X5650 gets 12,239 (58% Overclocked)

There's no benchmark availble for X5650 at stock speed but (by calculation) i can see it touching almost 8,000 & i'm fine with it. By little overclocking i can easily reach 10,000 mark without putting much load on procesor. Don't forget this setup still allows me to add more processor & RAM upto 92GB.

I request you John & others experts to please review my full system Configuration & comment on it.

M/BO: S5520SC + Intel Chassis
Processor: SINGLE X5650 2.66Ghz (6 Cores), 12M Cache, 6.4GT/s QPI
RAM: ECC DDR3 1333 - 12GB (2GB per core)
HDD: Intel X-25 Xtreme SDD, 32GB
HDD 2: Barracuda 7200 RPM
Graphics: Confused between Quadro FX 1800 ELEM & Quadro Fx 3800. Note: Quadro1800 doesn't support 'Adobe Mercury Playback Engine'

19" Display

Thanks again John for your support.
So this is it. pls suggest enhancements.

Thanks
Andy



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Jon BaggeRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 19, 2010 at 3:33:42 am


HDD: Intel X-25 Xtreme SDD, 32GB


SSD's are nice and fast, but bear in mind you are going to be hard pushed to fit windows + adobe production suite on to 32GB. Unless you have only AE. Sure you can always put some applications on the second drive.

Graphics: Confused between Quadro FX 1800 ELEM & Quadro Fx 3800. Note: Quadro1800 doesn't support 'Adobe Mercury Playback Engine'


For AE it won't matter, the Mercury engine is Premiere only.



--------------
Jon Bagge
Editor - London, UK
Avid - FCP - After Effects


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Andy JosephRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Apr 21, 2010 at 8:31:00 pm

Hi Jon, Thank you for all your support. Pls share if there's anything new comes you way. Thnx Again


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Ben SigmanRe: i7-980X vs Dual Xeon E5620
by on Jan 26, 2011 at 7:35:13 am

Just wanted to reawaken this thread if possible to get some opinions...

I'm a graphics artist who works with zBrush, Maya, and Photoshop. All at the same time.

I was looking at building a system with the following specs and prices. Wanted to see if anyone has built something similar and what they would recommend.

I had to choose between a dual 5620 and a single i7 - which is why I'm posting this here.

Any criticism or approval?

RAM $239.99 12GB DDR3 1333
MOBO $449.99 SuperMicro MBD-X8DAH+-O
CHIPS $779.98 Dual Quad Core - 2 x Intel Xeon E5620 Westmere 2.4GHz 12MB L3 Cache LGA 1366 80W Quad-Core Server Processor
SSD $264.99 Crucial RealSSD C300 CTFDDAC128MAG-1G1 2.5" 128GB
Case $159.98 COOLER MASTER HAF 932 Blue RC-932-KKN3-GP Black Steel ATX Full Tower Computer

System without vid card: $1,894.93

XXX $699.99 Quadro Fx 3800



Total System Price $2,594.92


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