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Pros: One of the last overclocking Xeons, in 6C/12T dress, a healthy 12MB L3 Cache, and incredibly flexible: single chip, 2P server/WS, and the legendary SR-2 if you want to have fun. Oh, and ECC/REG or standard DDR3.
Both overclock to 4.54Ghz in my SR-2 with Swiftech Apogee HD blocks and the (most incredibly well built) MIPS full coverage SR-2 motherboard block setup. That's with the full 48GB of DDR3, which is running at a very impressive DDR3-2096 6-9-7, 3x EVGA GTX780Ti Kingpins (full coverage blocks and backplates) at 1522/8200, Titanium HD, Intel 2x10Gbit hardware NIC, Areca 1882xi-16i (4GB Cache/battery+NAND backup), hardware PCIe 2.1 x4 to 4+8 External/Internal-header USB3.0, 2x DC S3700 800GB RAID0, 4x Samsung EVO 1TB RAID0, 4x 1TB VR RAID10, 6x 4TB HGST Ultrastar SAS RAID6, and to make sure that the beast can eat, a pair of EVGA 1300WG2 fully-modular PSU's with fully custom made and sleeved cables (a gauge lower/thicker, MDPC-X sleeve). It requires a 20A circuit to itself!
Now, that's a setup I threw together to do some ambient water benching (using a custom test bench instead of a case), cooled by 4x Phobya 1260 rads each with 18x 140mm 178cfm/11.9mmH2O fans push+pull and 2x MCP35X2 (four total pumps).
Normally, I use these chips in one of my servers, specifically for encoding tracks on the fly while in the middle of a recording session (audio production and mastering, I do music and also television/film). Since I record master tracks at extremely high resolution/bit-rate (48bit/384khz usually), the raw audio takes up a lot of space, and factor in the fact that there are (usually) anywhere from 4 (single vocalist) to 16 (2-4 band members, plus spatial and other mics) simultaneous streams, and the encoding can be pushing significantly more data than a "lossless" 1080p/DTS-HD Blu-Ray!
For a while, I was relying on a single machine to encode, but it is frustrating walking into the studio in the morning after a late session to record/mix for a single musician and the previous night's 16+ channel (3-4hr session) still hasn't finished... I ALWAYS work WITH the artist(s) for part of the mixing as I believe that their music should sound how they want, and I do as much as possible to do so, without decreasing the quality of the record, losing the dynamic range (I refuse to participate in the Loudness War, everything I've mastered has a dynamic range limited only by the medium, whether Redbook or DVD-A+ 24/96-192.
I had used these chips first for the workstation, and then for some competitive benching which they survived without requiring so much as a voltage bump, and now they're the hearts of the second encoding rig I built (currently have 4; a 4x12C/24T, a 2x6C/12T, and 2 4x8C/16T, and with the half-dozen minimum different medium for distro, even a single record can utilize all four simultaneously).
Cons: The 95W TDP, while understandable, limits these chips along with the multiplier, and the 5680's I have are significantly faster (5Ghz easy).
I went through a few trying to find a pair of chips that BOTH worked with all the DIMMs populated on the SuperMicro boards I use for pro work (the 48gigs of the SR-2 is comparatively easy to handle), as even 192GB can be whittled down surprisingly fast, especially when using one or more RAMdisks to cache or buffer writes to any of the HDD arrays that aren't using SSD(s) alongside the 1-4GB RAM courtesy of the Areca/etc controllers.
If you are overclocking, the better your RAM, the better the results in my experience, in particular for benching. The G.Skill Pi's I have rated DDR3-2200 7-9-7 provide a lot more flexibility and for some benches, points, than 1600 6-7-6. The catch is that the currently produced DDR3 "enthusiast" kits are not very well suited for these chips, either; IVB/SB-E/HW/IV-E all benefit from very high frequency, but the on-die IMC and insanely fast L3 cache of the newer architecture have greatly reduced the benefits of the super tight timings we see in kits from just a few years ago, when Nehalem was king and the timings greatly impacted latencies. Thus, even a top quality current kit such as Trident X 2400 9-11-11/2666 10-12-12 or Ripjaws Z 2400 9-11-9 (GSkill provides significantly better IC's in their kits than equivalent priced Corsair, and to get similar yet still usually lesser quality from the latter you will spend 150 to 300 more!), can't get the tight timings these Xeons love.
Retail is too high considering the advances made since their intro, and I got mine out of servers being sold locally (privately), which for the same amount netted me two pair of these and four X5680, 384GB ECC DDR3 total, 1/ea H700, H800, and 9286 RAID cards, two dozen 150-450GB SAS 15Krpm drives, 2 brand new X25M-E SLC 80gig, a K4000, a FirePro W9000, two 6-tuner capture cards, a box of high end Sanyo Denkei and Delta fans, a couple "playback" video cards (5770, 4670, GTS450, half a dozen HH 4xxx series low end for HDMI)...
Just be patient and attentive!
Other Thoughts: It is a testament to the performance, design, and functionality that you get from Intel when a processor released a few years back for a few-years-dead platform is outperformed only by its successor. These CPU's can be found all over, and with a bit of patience and knowledge, it's actually incredibly easy to match a pair of these 6core/12thread Xeons (or even the faster models) with a full fledged SSI CEB 2P board from SuperMicro or the like, quite likely with 24-96GB DDR3-1333/1600REG-ECC, for less than what I spent on my 3930K, and do the same with the top model of the line for less than my 3970X or 4960X.
Why "settle" for an APU or E3/i5 based home server when you can do AMD's "Moar Coarz", but do it right?
Sure, it's overkill for an HTPC or (my favorite) your favorite flavor of "Giant Box'O'RAID" storage server, but if you are shopping for a high end processor in the first place, you are probably a fellow member of the "Overkill or No-kill" club.
If you are looking for processors for running a number of VM's, or "grown up RAID" (ie not a pointless 2x128GB SSD RAID0, but hardware, onboard caching, battery and ideally NAND backed arrays), then with very few exceptions, 12 cores (24 threads) is ideal for home use, and will provide a fair amount of room to grow arrays for example (I started with 8x 15Krpm HDD + 2x SSD, and in this one machine currently have 3 separate 8x3TB RAID6E arrays (9total drives per array), 2x DC S3700 800GB SSD RAID0 as a write and current-project cache for all parity arrays, 8x 600GB 15Krpm in RAID0 for temp storage, 2x X25M-E RAID0 scratch array, 4 4x4TB WD RE SAS in RAID10, and the motherboard ports hold the 2x M4 128GB RAID0 OS array (OP'ed 40pct), and the rest are filled with misc 1-3TB HDD as single drives).
Running bi-directional 10GbEth via Intel HW NIC, even stressing every single storage device, simultaneously reading and writing at about 1.2GB/sec, I run out of bandwidth before the processors even break 20 percent in use.
Bottom line: The most economical way to get awesome trapped in a silicon wafer, and every one of the 6 cores is a REAL, FULL CORE with the addition of HT, unlike the 4/6/8/12/16 "core" chips from the other guy, that are 2/3/4/6/8 CORE chips with a variation of HT semi integrated into a small part of the hardware, that lures fanboys out in droves to douse the Internet in a bath of fire from their flamewars.
This review is from: MartinLogan MLT-2 5.1 CH Premium Home Theater Speaker System Black System
Pros: I do audio engineering and have thus spent quite a bit of time with audio equipment, from the basic five buck PC speakers to true studio monitors and ultra high end home audio equipment and everything in between.
These speakers are one of the best bang for your buck audio purchases you can make, at 250 they're a steal and at 180 you are doing it wrong if you don’t get them.
Unlike the generic Polk, Klipsch, and countless other "I am not a HTIB I swear!" kits, this is actually a very well designed, well constructed, excellent sounding system. The subwoofer, apparently some have issues with it but not me, is a 10" 360W peak (120rms) unit that integrates extremely well even as you expand the system. It has a selectable crossover but unlike most all competitors, the HK is a dial allowing precision instead of 2-4 preset frequencies.
The satellite speakers, while not exactly ideal for a cathedral, competently fill a 20x18 foot room (11' ceiling) with sound. I have not yet done any frequency response measurement, so I will give subjective and update with objective sometime soon.
The tweeters are perfectly sized and very well designed, and the woofers throw aside the all too common "bigger is better" and instead are perfectly sized to complement the tweeters without leaving a big gap between the two (the only other 5.1 box set that compares is the Take5).
Highs are crisp yet mellow, with no harshness even when strained, and no audible sibilance. The design allows for natural sounding treble, and it is dispersed very well, something that many far more expensive speakers struggle with and which some (Polk) simply cannot figure out.
The mids provide excellent clarity of vocals, and because the designers went for function over bigger is better, they're able to handle extremely demanding sounds (meaning that they don't choke when there are 20 explosions and five people talking all at once in a film). I was genuinely surprised to hear how well they handle the mid bass, normally the weakest area by far w 5.1 box systems, which tend to rely too heavily on the inclusion of a subwoofer and leave a glaringly obvious gap between mids and bass. Not these.
I have tested these setup as my computer audio for gaming, set them up specifically for music, as well as use them for home theater purposes which is why they were purchased, to get my mother a good home theater setup at her new home without breaking the bank.
Paired with two towers serving FL/FR, another pair of the same serving as front wide, these are working exceptionally well as the surround side and rear R/L, and front high is handled by a set of dipole speakers I had.
While I don't live with the setup, and have my own dedicated home theater room within a room setup (11.4ch but up to 13.4 w proper source; acoustic treatment in necessary areas, etc), I am genuinely impressed every time I go over there and hear these.
Cons: Apparently people have issues with the sub?
Despite the speakers low price, their actual sound quality dictates the use of a higher end receiver for home theater use, so expect to spend 2-3x the cost of the speakers on a receiver to get the full benefits.
As good as they are, they truly come alive when you add a pair of towers for the front. I highly recommend the Pioneer FS-51/FS-52 towers, the ones designed by speaker genius Andrew Jones, because not only do they take a dump on $600 per speaker Klipsch or Polk towers while costing just $150, they actually have an extremely similar voice.
Despite the glaringly obvious problems with such a design, speaker companies still continue to produce center channel speakers with horizontally aligned drivers... The issue is that it causes phase problems, unless you are sitting in a very specific spot.
If you don’t believe me, simply turn it right side up and listen. Better still, use a tower that matches your front main speakers as your center. I do, and I could never go back.
Other Thoughts: The setup is as follows:
LG 65" Local-Dimming LED-LCD TV
Pioneer SC-1222K Receiver (HIGHLY recommend this for these speakers! The Onkyo and Denon units don't come close, and thanks to the D3 class amps it actually outputs over 100W/ch, unlike EVERY Onkyo/Denon that's only 100W+ when in stereo and drops to less than half that in surround; oh, and it runs extremely cool, supports 11.2 + Zone2/3, and is actually identical to the Elite SC-63/65 internally except for not having the 12v triggers!)
Samsung BD Player w built-in Wi-Fi (Netflix)
HD Digital Cable
DVR from cable Co
Marantz CD Player
4x Pioneer FS-51 tower speakers
2x DefTech Bipolar Radiating Speakers (front highs)
ML 10" Subwoofer
DefTech 12" Subwoofer (located behind the seating area for the "boomier" bass
Mono - Price 12AWG oxygen free copper speaker wire (I sleeve all my wires, EMI/RFI shielded ultra-dense braided sleeving)
Mono - Price Banana Clips for everything
Mono - Price Quad-Shielded 75ohm Coaxial Cables (subs)
Mono - Price 12' RedMere HDMI Cables (1.4b ultra-thin no-loss)
Mono - Price 75buck Speaker Stands and Custom Center Channel Mount
Asus AC-68 Wireless AC Router and the Access Point
Custom HTPC I built for her setup (Fractal case, 3770, 2x8GB DDR3-2133 9-10-10, 650Ti Boost, one of my old RAID cards an Areca 1882ix-16i w 4GB cache, NZXT HALE90V2 850W, LG BD-Burner, Samsung 830 512GB SSD, 5x WD RED 3TB RAID5, 3x WD Blue 1TB WD10EZEX, Phanteks twin tower cooler, all case fans fitted and all are Sanyo Denkei San Ace PWM fans with 3 more on the CPU cooler, 8-Way PWM Hub, 3 2-way PWM splitters, all case fans run off CPU fan PWM header signal but w their own power; and of course, a Hauppauge 4-way TV Tuner w 4-channel recording during playback, and one of my old sound cards an Asus Xonar Essence ST w daughter board)
She is beyond happy, and has called me multiple times just to say "wow/expletive", even months later.
Excellent, but You need a great receiver (Pioneer SC-1222K is far and away the best for the money, in fact it beats out 1500US receivers from O/D). Also, get at least one pair of Pioneer FS-51/2's, as these transform into truly exceptional when paired with good towers, and at 150 a pair, you're getting speakers that literally sound like they're worth 900 a piece!
Finish with 12AWG wires from Mono - Price and you will love it!
Again, I am an audio engineer, and have had over a dozen 20 grand or more setups, yet I consider this to be one of the most well rounded and capable, affordable speaker setups I have EVER heard! Do it right and you have less than a grand into it but it'll sound like 5.
This review is from: HighPoint RocketRAID 2300 PCI Express SATA II (3.0Gb/s) Controller Card
Pros: - have used these for a few years for inexpensive, basic file servers and not lost any data
- PCIe x1 means that you can utilize the x8/x16 slots on motherboard which, if you are using it for a storage server or even HTPC, You should have a few of
- Software level RAID but it's a basic HBA, not a real RAID card, so I don't have a problem with that. If you want hardware RAID, either spend 3x as much or more per card or get some old PERC5/i or PERC6/i cards but remember that the latter support only 2TB and have board incompatibility issues
- Despite the fact that x1 bandwidth is limited to far less than the sum of the 4 SATA2 ports, I have not had any issues with throughput using mechanical drives
- You can run this with a Pentium D, Athlon64 X2, or anything like that and it will be more than powerful enough, although if the intended use is an HTPC I would recommend having a dedicated GPU for video playback (you will almost certainly not be able to play 1080p video with the processor acting as the RAID controller combined with the old pathetic integrated graphics of the older processors); pretty much any card from 2009-10 or newer will give you the ability to stream multiple 1080p videos.
It does its purpose without any real problems, certainly nothing like what others have been having, and currently I have 5 of these and have used at least 25.
Cons: - Configuration, should difficulties arise, is not straightforward or what I would consider logical
- This is NOT A HARDWARE RAID CARD, IT CANNOT COMPARE TO LSI/ADAPTEC/ARECA/3WARE/ATTO/INTEL!
- I guess an extension of the above, but as it is a simple HBA, it relies on the CPU and system memory for XOR/Striping calculations, which is perfect for remote file servers or HTPC use, but it is noticeable in terms of performance and resources used, even when I have one hooked up to my 3930K @ 5Ghz with 16GB DDR3-2400 9-10-10, or (slightly less so) my dual-processor board with 2 8-core/16-thread Xeons @ 3.8Ghz w 96GB DDR3-1800 6-7-6 (this is the machine that I have most of my "real" arrays and cards running off of, including a 9286-16i, an Areca with 24-ports and 4GB cache, an Adaptec 20-port w 4GB, and an 1882ix-24i 4GB all w BBU's, SSD caching where possible same with flash based backup)
- Have not tried anything larger than 2TB drives
- RAID0 with 4x WD10EZEX is slower than what any of my other setups w the same exact drives will do, even my Rampage 4 Extreme native 3Gbps Intel ports are quitea bbit faster (this card maxes out with 3 drives in RAID0 basically)
Other Thoughts: I am big on recycling old components into new uses, and as such I have most of my storage, file, FTP, and so forth servers running on Core2Duo/Quad (an E8600, Q6600, Q6800, Q9850), Athlon64 X2's (4400+, 5600+, 6800+), Pentium D (960/920), and even a Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 3.6Ghz my old A64 FX-51 + X2 FX-66 chips. Boards are almost all the best of what was available at the time the chips were new, including the Rampage Extreme, Asus Commando, P5D Premium/Deluxe, A8N32-SLI and two $500 boards for my FX chips, etc. All, except for the FX51 (DDR-400 Registered memory is hard to find, especially a matching set to my old Corsair XMS3500RE DDR-450 2.5-3-2 2GB kit), are running either 4GB DDR-400/450 or 8GB DDR2-800/1066/1100, or 8-16GB DDR3-1333 6-6-6 to ensure that the HBA's have plenty of memory access.
Most, tho, are only plugged in every month or so to update files, then unplugged (I cycle them), to keep power issues from killing my data. 28TB alone is simply redundant backups with another 14TB as most recent backups.
Then I have two I set up for my mother at her house, one as an HTPC (i7-2600K + 8GB DDR3-2000 7-8-7 + Nvidia 550Ti 2GB + Asus Z68 board + TV Tuner Card + LSI 9261-8i + RocketRAID 2300 + Intel Quad GbEth card + Intel X25E SLC NAND 80GB SSD for array caching + Samsung 830 128GB OS drive + Intel 330 180GB program drive + 8x WD RED 3TB in RAID5+HS for videos + 4x WD RE 2TB RAID10 for pictures and documents + LG BD-Burner and LG BD Player + HT Omega Claro Halo with Daughter board because it is much better than HDMI audio although both are connected to the SC-1522K receiver and while the HT is better for music the HDMI is the only way to fully utilize the 11.2 system I built for her or use DTS Master or the not quite as good TrueHD) and the other is a file server designed for redundancy (C2Q QX6800 + 8GB DDR2-800 4-4-4 + Asus 775 Workstation Board + Intel Quad GbEth NIC + AMD HD6790 + 2x LSI 16-port 2GB cards + 1x RR 2300 + 3 4-drive RAID10 arrays w WD RE 3TB + 8x WD Blue WD10EZEX 1TB in RAID6 + 4x Seagate ES.2 2TB in RAID10 on the RR card + Intel 330 90GB SSD system drive + 3x Asus/LG Blu-ray Burners + eSATA External 5-bay enclosure w 5 WD RED 3TB RAID6 for critical files, which is kept in a fireproof safe).
Overall of the literally over 150TB of data storage (I'm in the field of Psychopharmacology and have three self-built 4P/4GPGPU systems at home for modeling and crunching, and each project can take 10TB over the months it takes even 12x 10c/20t Xeons + 8x Nvidia Tesla K20C 12GB GK110 compute cards + 4x Quaddro 12GB compute cards + 192GB DDR3-1600RE PER BOARD + 3x IODrive 2.4TB PCIe SSD across the three + 3x PCIe 3.0 x16 24-port RAID cards w 4GB DDR3-1600RE cache and NAND Cache and BBU one per system again + total of 19TB SATA3 SSD space + 60TB HDD space). Oh, and yes when I don't need them for work, I use them for Folding @ Home, and I reached 1mil points in a couple days I believe! So, I am trying to cure diseases twofol