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Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:35 pm
by Irinikus
SGI boxes come in so many forms, each of which is interesting in it's own unique way!

Which SGI box best represents SGI, in your opinion?

Secondly, if you were only able to have one SGI box, which one would it be?

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 2:50 am
by Irinikus
My Personal favorites are the Indigo2, the O2 and the Octane2, as these machines are relatively small and they are completely different to the "Generic PC", in that they are completely proprietary and uniquely SGI. I also absolutely love their modular design.

In my opinion, they also best represent SGI's ground breaking technology which they produced in their larger machines during their golden years.

In my opinion, they're powerful enough to give you a proper IRIX experience.

If I had to have only one SGI box, it would probably be between the O2 and the Octane2 and I would suggest to anybody looking to dabble in SGI, to look no further than these two very capable boxes. :mrgreen:

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:10 am
by computron
Indy is a nice one, small footprint, lovely color, and run Irix fine !
after my second choice goes to the Iris 4D/Crimson/Onyx chassis...... nice and brutal !

Cheers

Eve

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:16 am
by dexter1
In my PhD years in the mid '90s the university bought SGI Indy's to replace the ageing Sun IPC/SLC and SparcStations.
Most of my unix experience came from that period using them for scientific researchand and, well, other 'stuff'.
And hey, it booted with a chime! That was awesome. And the camera, the video-in, the built-in speaker, the R5000 (floating point!)...

To me it's the most defining machine SGI has put out, even though i should give more credit to the Indigo1 for the technological breakthrough it was, or the Indigo2 which was technologically identical, looked like a monolith, and had a CDROM, but no camera (by default) and no R5000.

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:27 am
by foetz
usability wise that'd be the indigo2. the teal one. not that i'm a big fan of teal but simply because it can run everything from irix 4 to 6.5.22.
technology wise it'd be the first octane. no other machine has been that far ahead of the competition at its time.

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:33 am
by Irinikus
dexter1 wrote:In my PhD years in the mid '90s the university bought SGI Indy's to replace the ageing Sun IPC/SLC and SparcStations.
Most of my unix experience came from that period using them for scientific researchand and, well, other 'stuff'.
And hey, it booted with a chime! That was awesome. And the camera, the video-in, the built-in speaker, the R5000 (floating point!)...


An awesome reason to have the Indy as a personal favorite!

You were lucky to experience the Indy when it was cutting edge! At that time, was child at school and had never heard of SGI.

I suppose that my love for the O2 extends form the fact that it was the very first SGI machine that I had the pleasure of seeing and using back in 2000!
It was used to run a series of flight simulation tests during my pilot selection.

I the next SGI machines that I encountered were Onyx machines with Infinite Reality Graphics, which drove our flight simulators at the Central Flying School.

I never forgot the O2 that I'd seen and it was the machine that got me into collecting SGI machines.

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:00 am
by ClassicHasClass
Indy, but mostly for regions of nostalgia (I was seriously tempted by it as a starving undergraduate, and I played a lot of sgidoom on one at the Salk Institute while pretending to work).

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:28 am
by Y888099
if I had to buy an SGI machine, i would take a rackable one, so probably a couple of O350 to be put inside a mini rack as well as harddrives fitted in 1U and an 1U lan switch.

It's the best trade off between space/cost/house power

computron wrote:Crimson


Lord Cube Crimson seems to be a good divinity-name for a cyberpunk tale. Something like an old Loa entrapped into silicon. Might be a god who represent the old technology (1980-1990), fighting with divinities of the new technology (2010-2017) :lol:

Lord Cube needs our support, our neko-posts here make him alive since the only way to kill a divinity is to forget.

Doesn't it sound like a good TV serie :D ?

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:53 am
by Trippynet
For me, it's the Indigo2. Mainly because it was the first SGI machine I ever saw, and I fell in love with it's funky purple design immediately.

My dad had a job as the assistant technical manager at the new Virtual Reality centre at a local University (he worked mainly on the supporting PCs incidentally). One day when I had school holidays (I was maybe 14 years old), he took me in with him. This was the mid 90s and PCs were bland, beige boxes running Windows 95, and I still remember walking into the main developer room to see half a dozen purple Indigo2s with their 21" granite monitors scattered about the place. Compared with a little beige PC in the corner, they looked simply awesome.

Of course, seeing the Onyx 10000 they had rendering full 3D models across a gigantic triple-projector curved screen was also very impressive indeed! I was friendly with the main technical manager there (a guy who loved IRIX and who used an Indigo2 as his main workstation for many years), and through him I obtained my first SGI machines a few years later - 3 Indys that the Uni had decommissioned from their student teaching lab.

Although I loved having my Indys, there was always the feeling that the Indys were the "budget" machines used for teaching the students on, but the Indigo2s were the higher-end systems used by the real developers. Hence why the Indigo2 was the SGI machine I lusted over most, and hence why today it's my favourite and most used SGI system - despite me also owning a Fuel, and an O2 (got the O2 for free from the Uni as well a couple of years later).

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:00 am
by Irinikus
Trippynet wrote:For me, it's the Indigo2. Mainly because it was the first SGI machine I ever saw, and I fell in love with it's funky purple design immediately.


The Indigo2 R10000 Impact is a truly awesome machine! I must agree with you that the "funky" purple design is truly awesome! It must have one of the best case designs ever!

It's definitely on my personal to do list, I'm just waiting for the opportunity to present itself!

I envy you for having one!

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 10:58 am
by Dodoid
Though it may have existed far after SGI's heyday, the Origin/Onyx3900 (unfortunately, I own neither of these) combined a truly modular brick-based design we haven't really seen elsewhere even since with the low heat output of the R16000 in order to fit 16 processors and 32GB of RAM into a single brick. It should be noted that earlier designs, all the way back to the Origin2000, were supposedly designed with the TDP of the upcoming Itanium in mind, which is why they were seemingly so space-inefficient with MIPS CPUs. Only the O3900, released after SGI decided that Itanium would be its own product line (Altix) truly took advantage of the space-efficiency of MIPS CPUs. It is definitely my favorite.

If I was only able to have one SGI, might as well be a recent, fast one with IRIX 6.5.30 and the last of their MIPS and in-house graphics tech. Would be a full rack Onyx3900 with IR4.

Besides, it's one of the few MIPS SGIs released in my lifetime (was born in September 2002, it released in November).

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2017 12:35 pm
by Y888099
Irinikus wrote:waiting for the opportunity to present itself!


I have a maximized R10K/Impact for sale, since I need the money to by a C3750, which is listed at 650 euro, I can't ask less than that. Of course, it comes with optional like G160, speakers, feet, external hard drive, etc.

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 10:51 am
by HurricaneJames
Octane (original) > Indigo > VW320

When I was an undergraduate ('99-'01) I was one of the few coders in a digital media lab/studio. We had a wall of generic PCs, a wall of G3 Macs on OS8/9, and a couple of SGI O2 machines. The PCs were always taken, the Macs were really only good for music production, but the SGIs... IRIX was too painful for most people in the lab, so one was always available. They had 21" monitors and plenty of graphics power, but only me and the lab administrator ever used them.

Later, in grad school, we got some VW550s. Unlike the predecessor 320/540s, the 230/550 machines were overpriced, ugly jokes. We only got them because government purchasing requirements forced us to buy over build, and buy only from specific pre-contracted vendors. Thankfully, I already liked the old SGI by that point.

Ironically, I'm not a huge fan of the O2 design. I fell in love with the design of the Octane, and the Indigo. Also ironically, I love the look of the VW320, though I'm torn on what to do with it.

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:01 am
by Irinikus
You're right, the Octane and the Indigo are iconic, but the VW320 is simply beautiful, and arguably one of the best looking computer cases ever designed, in my opinion.

If you max it out with two 1Ghz PIII's and a 15K SCSI ,then it becomes a little beast and it's rather interesting to compare it to it's PC counterparts of the day!

If you can't find anything useful to do with it, it can always occupy a space on a shelf as a good piece of computer history. :D

Re: Which SGI box is your favorite and why?

Posted: Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:20 am
by Dodoid
320 is cool looking, but nothing beats the Prism desktop in terms of appearance. Maybe I'm weird by liking the look of an Itanium SGI more than the older ones, but the Prism is IMO the most SGI-looking SGI product ever designed, perhaps barring the Indy.