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Which Motherboard and RAM for a VmWare and Audio Enthusiast Build?

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King_Yoshi

New Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2010
I am in the process of designing and building a system for a friend and am looking for some feedback.

He is is a Audio enthusiast but will also be installing and running VMware vSphere. (He wants 32 gigs of ram to run multiple VMs.)

Currently we just need to pick out the Motherboard and RAM.
Does anyone have any suggestions for this build?


Any and all other suggestions or comments, regarding the build, are welcome

Current Build

Audio Interface (Already Owned)
External MOTU 896MK3

Firewire PCIE Adapter ($25)
SYBA 2-port of 1394b + 1-port of 1394a Firewire Ports PCI-Express Controller Card (SY-PEX30016)

Motherboard
Any Suggestions?

These are some boards we were looking at.

GIGABYTE G1 Gaming GA-Z170X-Gaming 7 (rev. 1.0) LGA 1151 Intel Z170 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

MSI MSI Gaming Z170A GAMING M5 LGA 1151 Intel Z170 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 ATX Intel Motherboard

Processor
Intel Core i7-6700K 4.0GHz Quad-Core Processor ($350)

Processor Cooler
Cryorig H7($35)
or
Noctua NH-14($73)
or
Coolermaster Hyper 212 ($75)
Will have to figure out which one of these fits, especially if the RAM has cooling fins.

RAM
32 Gigabytes of RAM
Any Suggestions?

Videocard
EVGA GeForce GTX 970 4GB GAMING ACX 2.0 04G-P4-2972-KR ($340)

Hard Drives
1x SAMSUNG 850 EVO 1TB ($350)

1x BYTECC Bracket-35225 2.5" HDD/SSD Mounting Kit For 3.5" Drive Bay or Enclosure ($36)

1x WD Black 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 6 Gb/s 64MB Cache 3.5 Inch - WD1003FZEX($75)

CD/DVD Drive Burner($30)
1x Plextor 24X SATA DVD/RW Dual Layer Burner Drive Writer - Black Optical Drives PX-891SAF

Power Supply ($200)
CORSAIR AXi series AX860i 860W

Case($149)
Cooler Master HAF 932 Advanced
 

Janus67

Benching Team Leader
Joined
May 29, 2005
why the gaming video card?

If he plans to run multiple concurrent VMs and wants to stick with a K-line of overclockable processors I'd go with an X99 platform to have the additional cores available (something like the 5820k that is 6c/12t).

I recommend using pcpartpicker for your build selection, it's easy and uses/finds lower prices from different etailers. For example, that Hyper 212 EVO should not be costing $75 (it should be near 25-35 at most), but it is listed through a 3rd party seller on newegg (I hate that they do that now).

What are the main goals for this system? Just to listen to music or to make music and then just run some VMs? Is he going to be doing that inside of the VMs? Or dual booting ESXI with a windows installation?
 
OP
K

King_Yoshi

New Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2010
why the gaming video card?
The videocard is so that he can run 3 monitors with multiple VMs in each monitor.
(He will be either splitting the screens into quads or half with a VM in each.)

He will be running his own audio studio from this computer. (Hes a professional musician.)

If he plans to run multiple concurrent VMs and wants to stick with a K-line of overclockable processors I'd go with an X99 platform to have the additional cores available (something like the 5820k that is 6c/12t).
That is a good point, and I do not see a large difference in price between the two.

I recommend using pcpartpicker for your build selection, it's easy and uses/finds lower prices from different etailers. For example, that Hyper 212 EVO should not be costing $75 (it should be near 25-35 at most), but it is listed through a 3rd party seller on newegg (I hate that they do that now).
Once I have the final build put together I will definitely be using pcpartspicker and begin looking for the best prices.
I was only using the current links to get a rough estimate of what the system would cost.

I didn't even notice it was sold via a 3rd party. (Yes this drives me crazy as well, since many of Neweggs 3rd party vendors are awful.)

What are the main goals for this system? Just to listen to music or to make music and then just run some VMs? Is he going to be doing that inside of the VMs? Or dual booting ESXI with a windows installation?

1.) Complete Audio Editing Studio.
As I mentioned previously, he is a musician.

2.) He will be running a small vsphere test environment.
To be honest he will be testing any and all of the below.

He may be running the Vmware hypervisor ontop of Windows 7.
Or dual booting, as you mentioned.
Or running Vmware and installing vsphere inside of it. (Yes a bit convoluted but I have seen it done successfully a number of times.)

3.) He would like this computer to be "future proof". So that he does not need to build a new machine in 5 years.

4.) This may be used for testing other software in the future, and I want to make sure it will be able to handle whatever he throws at it.
 

Dlaw

Member
Joined
Apr 26, 2012
Location
New York, USA
A buddy at work built a system pretty similar to the one you're considering, and he shared his build experience with me.

His first issue was with the Firewire card he tried to use. It didn't matter what he tried, he couldn't get it to work with his sound mixer (I think is what he said). He ended up scrapping it and going a different way.

I thought I'd share that, as it seems Firewire doesn't work very well with Z170, from what I can tell. X99 may be different.
 
OP
K

King_Yoshi

New Member
Joined
Dec 26, 2010
A buddy at work built a system pretty similar to the one you're considering, and he shared his build experience with me.

His first issue was with the Firewire card he tried to use. It didn't matter what he tried, he couldn't get it to work with his sound mixer (I think is what he said). He ended up scrapping it and going a different way.

I thought I'd share that, as it seems Firewire doesn't work very well with Z170, from what I can tell. X99 may be different.

Thank you for mentioning this.
We were just talking about changing the processor to something with more cores, and a new x99 motherboard.

I have included the new build below.
________________________________________________________________________________________________

Current Build

Audio Interface (Already Owned)
External MOTU 896MK3

Firewire PCIE Adapter ($25)
SYBA 2-port of 1394b + 1-port of 1394a Firewire Ports PCI-Express Controller Card (SY-PEX30016)

Motherboard
ASUS SABERTOOTH X99

Processor
Intel Core i7-5820K Haswell-E 6-Core 3.3 GHz ($390)

Processor Cooler
Cryorig H7($35)
or
Noctua NH-14($73)
or
Coolermaster Hyper 212 ($75)
Will have to figure out which one of these fits, especially if the RAM has cooling fins.

RAM
32 Gigabytes of RAM
Any Suggestions?

Videocard
EVGA GeForce GTX 970 4GB GAMING ACX 2.0 04G-P4-2972-KR ($340)

Hard Drives
2x SAMSUNG 850 EVO 1TB ($350 each)

2x BYTECC Bracket-35225 2.5" HDD/SSD Mounting Kit For 3.5" Drive Bay or Enclosure ($36)

CD/DVD Drive Burner($30)
1x Plextor 24X SATA DVD/RW Dual Layer Burner Drive Writer - Black Optical Drives PX-891SAF

Power Supply ($200)
CORSAIR AXi series AX860i 860W

Case($149)
Cooler Master HAF 932 Advanced