New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

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cybercow
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby cybercow » Tue Apr 15, 2008 3:55 pm

well ... from my modest pov, only 8 core desktop system today that can be taken "seriously" by enterprises is a ProMac. You don`t want to come in the office and see that the rendering just crashed at 3 am when you was sleepeng... pc is a pc, but there`s pc`s and pc`s ... and just don`t tell me that is normal having 32 cores on the desk don`t to mention quadro gfx`s ... if i needed these new systems from SGI i certainly will give them a chance. yes maybe i done the same job on 10 or 20 or [n] rubbish pc`s, and maybe wont. the point is in "maybe", when you get a contract, and the job must be done, ther`s no "maybe" or you re out... that`s the whole point, and this have its price.

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mapesdhs
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby mapesdhs » Tue Apr 15, 2008 5:49 pm

cybercow writes:
> well ... from my modest pov, only 8 core desktop system today that can be taken
> "seriously" by enterprises is a ProMac. ...

Surely you jest? :D

Many movie studios use 8-core HP systems for Flame/Smoke, in particular the
xw8600 and x9400 - definitely serious IMO. Likewise, the IBM dual-Opteron
APro 6217 is also used, and I expect many places are more than happy with the
Dell Precision 690 and the newer T7400 system. For rendering (using the same
CPUs, etc.), the Dell PowerEdge 1950 (etc.) is popular, eg. one movie company
I know of has 875 x 8-core PowerEdge blades for rendering (7000 cores total;
each blade has 2 x 3GHz quad-core XEON with 32GB RAM).

There are many other (and faster) decent 8-core desktops available besides the
Mac Pro. Indeed, both the Dell T7400 and HP xw8600 can have up to 4X more
RAM than the Mac Pro.

Infact, looking at Apple's performance specs page, I find it hard to take them
seriously when they're using Doom3 as a basis for comparing the graphics options;
not exactly talking the language of the professional. And bizarrely, the page doesn't
mention the FX5600 at all (the tech specs page does, but there's little detail elsewhere).
If the Mac Pro is so fast, why are there no gfx results for it on spec.org?

I also find it a bit wierd that the performance specs page really only compares
relative speeds of one Mac system with another. Almost no real results from the
various tests are given, so one cannot compare to non-Mac systems. The only
hard numbers on the page are for SPECint/fp_rate_base2006 (105.6, 72.6
respectively at 3.2GHz), both of which are beaten by the Dell T7400 (115, 76.8)
and amusingly the Altix ICE running at just 3GHz beats it aswell (119, 78.1).
I couldn't find numbers for the HP and IBM, but I expect they're comparable. I used
a Dell Precision 650 for a while (dual-XEON/2.66) and in hardware terms found it
to be solid, robust and reliable, so I would be surprised if the current Precision
products are any less well engineered.

For me, what SGI is offering that's special (whether rebadged BOXX systems or
not) are 4-way and 8-way systems with more than 2 GPUs of a kind not offered
by the traditionally strong providers like HP, IBM and Dell. Apple certainly has
nothing like them. SGI's VS systems should be a success for them, if they can market
them properly. That all depends on how the whole reseller chain deals with the new
offerings re pricing, etc. In the past this hasn't worked well, so we'll just have to wait
and see.

Ian.

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D-EJ915
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby D-EJ915 » Tue Apr 15, 2008 7:15 pm

:lol: speaking of the Mac Pro, some guy I was reading a post from the other day on another forum talked about how engineers use them, I thought to myself, no way! since when has Pro/E been available on Mac :lol: I know not everybody uses that but I certainly got a chuckle since it was the only thing I used.
:Indy: :rx2600: :Indigo2: :Indigo2: :Indy: :Indy:

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rothers
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby rothers » Wed Apr 16, 2008 6:41 am

D-EJ915 wrote::lol: speaking of the Mac Pro, some guy I was reading a post from the other day on another forum talked about how engineers use them, I thought to myself, no way! since when has Pro/E been available on Mac

You want to have a look at boot camp.

I have several clients running Engineering Apps (Pro-E, I-Deas, Solidworks) on 8 core Mac Pros under XP simply for the cool factor, it works surprisingly well.

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D-EJ915
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby D-EJ915 » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:15 am

That is true, but this was in a thread about Mac OS, otherwise it's just a fancy "PC."
:Indy: :rx2600: :Indigo2: :Indigo2: :Indy: :Indy:

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Arie van Schutterhoef
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby Arie van Schutterhoef » Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:45 am

>only 8 core desktop system today that can be taken "seriously" by enterprises is a ProMac.
-I think the hardware will be OK, but wonder how much one is able to do things like memory/process/thread-locking with Mac OS X, like can be done with Irix or with Linux/SGIProPack. OS X does not have something like cpu-set, but does this priorities and (too) much chatter between the Mach mini-kernel and the BSD-services.

AvS

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hamei
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby hamei » Wed Apr 16, 2008 9:12 am

rothers wrote:You want to have a look at boot camp.

Hey rothers ! nice to see you ! how's stuff ?

I've been told by my mac addict friends (sgi people are not addicts, of course) that parallels works better than boot camp. Of course it would, came from some OS/2 programmers :)
I have several clients running Engineering Apps (Pro-E, I-Deas, Solidworks) on 8 core Mac Pros under XP simply for the cool factor, it works surprisingly well.

Engineering apps are getting kind of boring ... maybe it's time to take up calligraphy. Still running your Fool ?

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mapesdhs
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby mapesdhs » Thu Apr 17, 2008 3:53 pm

Should hear from SGI UK about these systems next week. In the meantime, I've been
doing what digging I can. Correct me if I'm wrong, but there isn't any BOXX product
akin to the VS300 or VS350, so at least in that respect SGI does have something
unique to offer. However, as far as pricing goes, I have a feeling the news is not going
to be good, but I'll post again with what I find out. I've asked for figures for a dual-3.2GHz
XEON 5400 VS100, 8GB RAM, FX5600. An HP system would be 5500 UKP + tax, Dell
system would be 5700 UKP + tax, so that's the baseline I'll be comparing to. My guess
is SGI will bundle their OTT support with them by default, resulting in daft prices, which
is financial suicide of course. Ah well, all will be revealed in due course.

I've also asked BOXX if they have any info. Ya never know...

Ian.

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rothers
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby rothers » Fri Apr 18, 2008 1:10 am

hamei wrote:Hey rothers ! nice to see you ! how's stuff ?

Fine, same as ever, still drop into Nekochan from time to time, just not posted in ages.

hamei wrote:I've been told by my mac addict friends (sgi people are not addicts, of course) that parallels works better than boot camp. Of course it would, came from some OS/2 programmers :)

To my simple mind you can't get better than running native so boot camp it is :)

hamei wrote:Engineering apps are getting kind of boring ... maybe it's time to take up calligraphy.

True, I-Deas is still hanging in there, UGS (aka Siemens) keep trying to get us to migrate to NX5 but I-Deas is just too good, it refuses to die :twisted:

Your suggestion of a new career in calligraphy sounds enticing but we were thinking of taking up sponge diving off some tropical island.

hamei wrote:Still running your Fool ?

No, the Fool has been put out to grass. Liking a quiet existence I got sick of it's noise levels, like being sat next to an asthmatic vacuum cleaner all day. Now use a nice HP XW4400, silence is bliss and it goes like s**t off a shovel.

Cheers
Neil

jdboyd
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby jdboyd » Fri Apr 18, 2008 9:02 pm

mapesdhs wrote:Should hear from SGI UK about these systems next week. In the meantime, I've been
doing what digging I can. Correct me if I'm wrong, but there isn't any BOXX product
akin to the VS300 or VS350, so at least in that respect SGI does have something
unique to offer.


I believe you would find that the BOXX APEXX systems are similar, offering 8, 16, or 32 cores, and many gigs of ram and

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mapesdhs
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby mapesdhs » Mon Apr 21, 2008 8:33 am

jdboyd writes:
> I believe you would find that the BOXX APEXX systems are similar, offering 8, 16, or 32 cores, and
> many gigs of ram and

And?... got cut off there I guess.

Why is it so hard to find out any info about the BOXX systems though? I didn't come across details
of any 16/32-core systems when searching. I emailed BOXX. The person who replied asked me
where I was, I answered, heard nothing since.

Meanwhile, I have one price so far for a VS100, and it isn't pretty:

Code: Select all

Dual-XEON quad-core 2.8GHz, 12MB L2, 1600 FSB
4GB DDR2/800 (4 x 1GB)
Quadro FX5600
160GB SATA
IB on-board
Redundant PSU
3 Year SLES OS with SGI ProPack
3 Year Scali Manage Cluster Software

$12,046


Looks like SGI is still living in the past. Even with the redundant PSU and supposedly enhanced
gfx drivers in the ProPack, I can't see how such a price can be justified. Apparently, excluding
the cluster sw doesn't change the price much. A Mac Pro, Dell, HP or IBM is clearly a better deal
(er, way better, eg. Mac Pro in the UK with dual-3.2GHz and 320GB SATA is $10K, or a lot less
with the same 2.8 CPUs).

Anyone in a position to rap SGI on the nut? Hello McFly!! 8\

As someone said to me recently, SGI is acting like it's still in the land of expensive proprietary
hardware, but they're selling commodity hardware now, so markups like this are just daft. I have
companies and individuals asking me about these systems; no way am I going to recommend
them unless the price & price/performance makes sense. Maybe they have something unique
with the VS300/350, but the VS100 isn't something I would recommend right now, not if the
above pricing is typical. Certainly shows the comment in the press release to be rather
misleading: "Priced from $10,575 for a Virtu VN200 node with two Intel® Xeon® E5420
processors, 8GB of memory, and an NVIDIA Quadro FX5600 GPU, ..." Yeah right.

Meanwhile, the level of tech info on the systems is far too low. Some of the docs don't even say
whether the RAM is ECC. And still no benchmark results. Sheesh...

Ian.

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rothers
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby rothers » Mon Apr 21, 2008 9:30 am


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mapesdhs
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby mapesdhs » Mon Apr 21, 2008 11:57 am



Thanks!! Their description is a bit wonky though - 8 x Opteron dual-core doesn't give 32 cores. :D

So does anyone know how much one of the Apexx systems normally costs?

Ian.

jdboyd
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby jdboyd » Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:02 pm

mapesdhs wrote:


Thanks!! Their description is a bit wonky though - 8 x Opteron dual-core doesn't give 32 cores. :D

So does anyone know how much one of the Apexx systems normally costs?


The PDF may be outdated. Their web site says they support quad core opterons.

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mapesdhs
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Re: New SGI systems with NVIDIA gfx...

Unread postby mapesdhs » Mon Apr 21, 2008 12:17 pm

jdboyd writes:
> The PDF may be outdated. Their web site says they support quad core opterons.

It wasn't the PDF I was referring to; it's the main summary description at the top of the
page which is wrong. :D It says, "32 cores of phenomenal personal computing power
with 8 AMD dual core Opteron 800 series processors".

So, pricing? Anyone know?

Ian.


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