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Theodoric - A theoretical physics workstation

by PartpickingGlory

31
35 Comments

Part List View full price breakdown

Details

Date Published

Aug. 18, 2016

CPU Clock Rate

2.4 GHz

Description

I built this computer for a group at a research institution. Both reasonable CPU and GPU computing power were needed. Money wasn't an issue.

The primary goal of this system is to run a plane wave density functional code VASP. Since it will run 24/7 I particularly focused on quality, endurance, and performance. With GPU computing coming online as a major player and CUDA compilers being released for many languages I decided to add a Tesla K40 to the system. Otherwise the RAM and CPU are the main components of concern. I decided to only put in 64gb of DDR4 but the motherboard can support up to 512gb for further expansion. As for the CPU's I chose two Xeon E5-2630's. The machine has run now for months without any hiccups and the group I made it for seems pleased.

As for the other parts I usually erred on the side of endurance and reliability. I chose Enterprise 2 Tb HDD's, a 256gb Samsung Pro, Phanteks large air CPU coolers, and the Corsair 750D Airflow edition case -- mainly for good looks and expandability. A Tesla K40 sli setup may be added in the future to add some computational gravitas.

Since there is interest in an upgrade, I've been looking at a machine that possibly comprises of dual 22 cores and Nvidia's new Tesla P100. Although I'll probably wait for Intels new CPU's and Zen to come out first.

PartPickingGlory

Part Reviews

CPU

I put two of these in a workstation system and they work well and have run for many months straight with a demanding computation load.

CPU Cooler

I good dependable CPU cooler, although it is a little two large. Otherwise I recommend it.

Case

A pretty case with all the expandability you'd need. Although I had problems mounting my dual-socket motherboard.

Power Supply

A good PSU for systems that could/will take a lot of power. It has a 10 year warranty, so where reliability is concerned it checks that box as well.

Optical Drive

Decent and working CD Writer.

Comments Sorted by:

Minky7 3 Builds 7 points 30 months ago

Can it run crysis?

CleverJimmy 2 Builds 2 points 30 months ago

No. That gpu isn't made for gaming. Its for workstation stuff

Minky7 3 Builds 4 points 30 months ago

My dude it's a meme, look up "But can it run crisis?".

The_Boom_Boy 1 point 30 months ago

But i am pretty sure workstation cards can still run games https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_msbomKvVw But obviously it isn't designed to run games, but it still can and would be cool to see those benchmarks.

PartpickingGlory submitter 4 Builds 3 points 30 months ago

It actually doesn't have any video outputs. Nvidia pretty much disallowed gaming.

ARabidPenguin13 1 Build 1 point 30 months ago

I have a nvidia quadro 6000 sitting in my closet and I got curious so i threw it into a system with a 9590 and set an (unsafe. Hot and unsafe) overclock and managed to run far cry 4 on the ultra preset at time of release. Bear in mind I never reccomend doing this and I did it out of sheer curiousity

[comment deleted]
CleverJimmy 2 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

No ****. You're a week late

Mr.Quack 1 Build 1 point 30 months ago

Awesome!

pwelch234 1 point 30 months ago

"But the motherboard can support up to 512gb for further expansion" Im running 4gb

Unuvailiable 2 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

So what does this pc actually do? Im a noob to this kinda workstation stuff

Jhobbster 1 Build 1 point 30 months ago

It does research that uses very demanding applications.

Jhobbster 1 Build 1 point 30 months ago

These dual cpu builds never fail to amaze me. +1 From me mate looks very nice

FACUNDO 13 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

This is very powerful. The GPU is also insane. (and pricetag too hehe)

srs922 1 Build 1 point 30 months ago

It puts a big smile on my face to see a workstation pc on here every once and a while. I thought about building one for the use of ANSYS Fluent CFD for my FSAE team at school. Would be like super expensive though.

eopest 9 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

I dunno, seems like you might need more threads. ;)

The primary goal of this system is to run a plane wave density functional code VASP.

I'd like to ask WTH is that, but it sounds like something not readily explainable to normal humans... I need what brain I have not exploded all over the place. :) Interesting build though...

PartpickingGlory submitter 4 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

The group has access to a super computer when they need it. They are considering another workstation: I think it is best to wait until the arrival of Zen and Kaby lake.

eopest 9 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

Gotta use all the budget you have; that way, next year you won't get less. Plus, if they do have you build it now, there's all that data they can crunch right away. :)

Jake762by39 6 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

YES! Another physicist on here! +1

thomasjmoerman 1 Build 1 point 27 months ago

Yay for science builds!

akula2 1 point 26 months ago

+1 from me. How is that cooler doing? Are you happy with the build now?

PartpickingGlory submitter 4 Builds 1 point 26 months ago

It has been running calculations nonstop for like a year, they seem to like it. The coolers work just fine.

akula2 1 point 23 months ago

They seem to like it? You don't that machine with you? The reason why I ask is that I'd like to drop all Water coolers in the next Workstation build batch. As of today, I've dropped Kaby Lake CPU in favor of Ryzen.

signusio 1 point 25 months ago

For the price of the K40, you could get 2 AMD Radeon Pro Duos, and get 32 TFLOPs of performance over the K40's 2-5 (double/single). That is unless your framework is built specifically upon CUDA, but you could probably check out Vulkan if you've got extra time on your hands. _^

PartpickingGlory submitter 4 Builds 1 point 25 months ago

Completely agreed. Except nvidia has a deal where it will give research scientists K40's for free.

sparkyman215 1 point 24 months ago

How much clearance does the ram have? Id like to put a be quiet shadow rock lp cooler but I can't find any ram measurements online.

sevhelou@optusnet.com.au 1 point 22 months ago

cool build love the intel Xeon i'm having an 8 core xeon to!!

Nater650 1 point 20 months ago

I wonder if I can mine bitcoins with this thing...

D0RAW 2 Builds 1 point 19 months ago

where did you get the motherboard at?

Materialism 0 points 30 months ago

Did you bought the RAM separately? ( 2x 32GB sets) if so the RAM won't work that well. Just wondering because they are listed separately on your part list. But good job building this truely powerful computer. +1

PartpickingGlory submitter 4 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

I bought 4x16, why would installing ram in more DIMM slots be deficient?

Gooberdad 10 Builds 1 point 30 months ago

No ignore the noob comment you are fine. This is an awesome crunching machine.

I saw the Tesla in your pictures and had that "Wow" moment. That's a lot of power.

Materialism 1 point 30 months ago

RAM is designed too operate optimal with the sticks within the same set adding another set later on isnt optimal: https://youtu.be/oRCXYXszi8U Says it at 3:20-3:40 I think.

eopest 9 Builds 2 points 30 months ago

Wrong. These are the same manufacturer, same model, bought at the same time with the same timings; they'll run (and have run for months) just fine together.

Materialism 1 point 30 months ago

I meant when he upgrades at a later point and on his part list the RAM sticks are separately thats why I asked.

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PCPerson2016 1 point 27 months ago

It was not his personal build and I bet the institute paid for everything.

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