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Are dual CPU setups worth it?

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Evil-Mobo

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Location
MD
So just for the sake of conversation I figured I would start this thread. A lot of folks here with good knowledge so lets kick up the dust a little and hopefully this isn't a dead horse, it's late, been a long day, and I didn't do a search :thup:

So theoretically speaking, if one wanted a crap ton of CPU power for a good multi-tasking/benching rig that coould also be used for lets say 1440p gaming at 60fps steady with nice high/ultra settings, what if anything does a dual CPU haswell setup offer over going X99?

The dual CPU buillds have always peaked my interest and I keep seeing dual Xeon Haswell build and was just curious.

So let's hear it :)
 

ATMINSIDE

Sim Racing Aficionado Co-Owner
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Better off with single CPU for gaming because you can overclock.
 
OP
Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Location
MD
Right but with gaming not being the main focus.......but still a real use......
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
Location
Buckeyes!
Trouble... :p

Though there are a lot of cores, it won't really help in benchmarking much. The problem is that not many people use it so the boints you can get are low.

It will game just fine.
 
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Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

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Joined
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Location
MD
Trouble... :p

Though there are a lot of cores, it won't really help in benchmarking much. The problemish is that not many people use it so the boints you can get are low.

It will game just fine.

I should have been more specific on the benching but I meant more for benching GPU's :)
 

Mandrake4565

Mr. Clean Senior Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2012
I should have been more specific on the benching but I meant more for benching GPU's :)
It will depend on the 3D bench. Some 3d benches really take advantage of multi core/threaded Cpu's such as 3D Firestrike and 3D Vantage others you'll do better on with a single higher clocked Cpu. Either way to really get some boints you're going to need to Oc the Cpu.
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
Joined
Dec 15, 2008
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Buckeyes!
Not really... though it has more cores and anything from 3dmk06 forward responds well to more cores, the problem is going to be with clockspeeds and ramping that up. There used to be a board from evga, the sr-2, that was a dual cpu overclocking board, but that was for Nehalem chips IIRC. Now, not sure there is a dual cpu board that would overclock...

If it was viable for benching 3d, it would be used a lot more for it. It's better to invest in x99/5930k or 5960x if you want balls to the wall 3d. Many cores, much speed. ;)

If you are going to spend 1k on 2 cpus and a mobo, I'd rather spend 1.2k on the octo and a mobo.
 

ATMINSIDE

Sim Racing Aficionado Co-Owner
Joined
Jun 28, 2012
Benching GPU's, assuming modern benchmarks, you want a 5960X to max the performance.
You need both single-core and multi-core performance.

You're better off with a wide hardware library though, it lets you get experience and score a large set of boints.
 
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Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

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Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Location
MD
Not really... though it has more cores and anything from 3dmk06 forward responds well to more cores, the problem is going to be with clockspeeds and ramping that up. There used to be a board from evga, the sr-2, that was a dual cpu overclocking board, but that was for Nehalem chips IIRC. Now, not sure there is a dual cpu board that would overclock...

If it was viable for benching 3d, it would be used a lot more for it. It's better to invest in x99/5930k or 5960x if you want balls to the wall 3d. Many cores, much speed. ;)

Is it worth the wait if there's no rush to see what the next batch of CPU's bring like Skylake E?

- - - Updated - - -

Benching GPU's, assuming modern benchmarks, you want a 5960X to max the performance.
You need both single-core and multi-core performance.

You're better off with a wide hardware library though, it lets you get experience and score a large set of boints.

Gotcha.

Guys I appreciate all the responses lots of good info here :thup:
 

EarthDog

Gulper Nozzle Co-Owner
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Skylake-e is likely going to have the same small difference that skylake was to haswell. I'd say no. But, you will see 5930k and 5960x start to go cheaper at that time.
 
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Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

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MD
Skylake-e is likely going to have the same small difference that skylake was to haswell. I'd say no. But, you will see 5930k and 5960x start to go cheaper at that time.

A 5960X would be a dream. I had (4) J batch 5930's on hand after black friday that I got cheap but I sold them all fairly quickly lol......

What about the older stuff like the 4960 and what not.....?
 
OP
Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Location
MD
Benching GPU's, assuming modern benchmarks, you want a 5960X to max the performance.
You need both single-core and multi-core performance.

You're better off with a wide hardware library though, it lets you get experience and score a large set of boints.

The library will be growing soon lol..... :)

Just tossing the idea around for a later build is all........
 

Woomack

Benching Team Leader
Joined
Jan 2, 2005
Dual CPUs are good only for servers nowadays.
1. You can't really OC Xeons
2. Xeons have general low frequency or killer prices. In general performance tests it's something like 2x 2.4GHz 6 core Xeon = 4.8GHz 6 core i7. At the same time 1x Xeon 2620 v3 cost more than 5820K and it's 2.4GHz vs 3.3GHz ( + turbo ).
3. Memory access is slow but max bandwidth is higher. Still most desktop applications can't use any higher bandwidth and base mainly on access time.
4. Xeons have really high prices comparing to i7. I mean like you have to pay more for lower frequency CPU without OC and that's not the best idea.
5. Dual socket platforms require ECCR DIMM. Price isn't so much higher but these modules are only low frequency and high latency.
6. If it's not dedicated desktop/workstation motherboard then you find various issues what won't let you play games or use better graphics cards.
7. Games are not scalling good with anything above 4-8 cores and in most calculations counts more CPU frequency than supported threads.
can find some more I guess

Even in competitive benchmarking like hwbot multi core platforms are waste of money. If you get 1-5 spot in global ranking on hwbot then you get a lot of points. However on any lower platform you get barely any points. I have some results on 2x6 and 2x8 core Xeons. Really nothing as good as it seems. Guys on top of the list are using highest ES CPUs what is above the budget even for larger companies, not to mention home users.
 
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Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Location
MD
Dual CPUs are good only for servers nowadays.
1. You can't really OC Xeons
2. Xeons have general low frequency or killer prices. In general performance tests it's something like 2x 2.4GHz 6 core Xeon = 4.8GHz 6 core i7. At the same time 1x Xeon 2620 v3 cost more than 5820K and it's 2.4GHz vs 3.3GHz ( + turbo ).
3. Memory access is slow but max bandwidth is higher. Still most desktop applications can't use any higher bandwidth and base mainly on access time.
4. Xeons have really high prices comparing to i7. I mean like you have to pay more for lower frequency CPU without OC and that's not the best idea.
5. Dual socket platforms require ECCR DIMM. Price isn't so much higher but these modules are only low frequency and high latency.
6. If it's not dedicated desktop/workstation motherboard then you find various issues what won't let you play games or use better graphics cards.
7. Games are not scalling good with anything above 4-8 cores and in most calculations counts more CPU frequency than supported threads.
can find some more I guess

Even in competitive benchmarking like hwbot multi core platforms are waste of money. If you get 1-5 spot in global ranking on hwbot then you get a lot of points. However on any lower platform you get barely any points. I have some results on 2x6 and 2x8 core Xeons. Really nothing as good as it seems. Guys on top of the list are using highest ES CPUs what is above the budget even for larger companies, not to mention home users.

Thank you for this most informative post.
 

maddmaxx212

Registered
Joined
Jun 5, 2015
If you want a workstation, you can build your own. No need to buy directly from overpriced companies like the one mentioned in the video.

Also if you are tight on budget but just want more cores for processing, you can also look at AMD processors (Opteron).

Personally never used AMD processors, but from my understanding Intels do have slightly better performance but when it comes to encoding/rendering those processes benefit more from amount of cores you have compared to how fast each cores are. Also talking to friends who've used AMD processors in the past, they have no issues at all.

If you are planning to buy dual xeons, you might be able to get 2 decent opterons for the price of one xeon. Probably for the price of dual xeons you could probably build a 2x Opteron workstation and a good intel gaming machine/workstation. If you are network savy, you can work/play on the gaming machine and when you need to render/encode you can just send the files over to the workstation and let that work it all out and you'll have a spare computer laying around to do other work/play at the same time.
 
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Evil-Mobo

Evil-Mobo

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Joined
Nov 16, 2015
Location
MD
If you want a workstation, you can build your own. No need to buy directly from overpriced companies like the one mentioned in the video.

Also if you are tight on budget but just want more cores for processing, you can also look at AMD processors (Opteron).

Personally never used AMD processors, but from my understanding Intels do have slightly better performance but when it comes to encoding/rendering those processes benefit more from amount of cores you have compared to how fast each cores are. Also talking to friends who've used AMD processors in the past, they have no issues at all.

If you are planning to buy dual xeons, you might be able to get 2 decent opterons for the price of one xeon. Probably for the price of dual xeons you could probably build a 2x Opteron workstation and a good intel gaming machine/workstation. If you are network savy, you can work/play on the gaming machine and when you need to render/encode you can just send the files over to the workstation and let that work it all out and you'll have a spare computer laying around to do other work/play at the same time.

Thanks for your input, however, I would never pay that company so much money for a computer. It was simply used as a reference is all. As for AMD, I'm not gonna go there lol. Already did and the CPU was bottle necking my GTX 970 big time.

The 860K is running well in my wife's build though for what she will be using it for.