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Cheaper SMP AMD Motherboards?

Cliff posted more than 12 years ago | from the holy-price-discrepancies dept.

AMD 61

[RNP]Venom asks: "With AMD prices as low as ever, it leaves several of my co-workers and I asking some common questions. With some 50+ Dual, Quad, etc.. Intel-based Motherboards/Chipsets, why is it we've not seen an influx of Dual-AMD equipment? I know we have at least 4 AMD Athlon cpu's sitting around the shop here that would be great to have in an SMP setup, however short of spending $200-$500 on a Tyan Product, or around the same mark for one of the few other products with dual-Athlon Support, what can one do? Where are the $50-$100 Dual-AMD CPU boards that Intel users enjoy? A Google search reveals little but Tyan and more Tyan. I thought their 'exclusive' was only 6 months? I figure the Slashdot readers would be the best to query on current or upcoming 'affordable' products in this area."

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effff pee (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3802754)

FP. Propz to my #trolls brothers. Fight the good fight!

Dual AMD's? (2, Funny)

qurob (543434) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802756)


Wouldn't you need like a 600 watt power supply, and a cooling system rivaling the "Wild Artic" at Sea World?

Re:Dual AMD's? (2, Funny)

linzeal (197905) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802873)

Need to hire a 'geek' in Michigan? Hire me [mailto]!

I got 200 heads of chicken in that pen over yonder, go to it boy!

Top 10 reasons to upgrade to Vis. Studio (-1)

pwpbot (588025) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802794)

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copying files to a directory With Visual Basic NET and new autodownload deployment Windowsbased applications can be installed and executed simply by pointing a Web browser to a URLNumber 2More Robust CodeVisual Basic NET delivers the feature most requested by existing Visual Basic developersfewer bugs in the code they write Features in the new Visual Studio NET IDE such as the realtime background compiler and the task list keep Visual Basic developers uptodate on any coding errors as they occur enabling quick and effective error resolution Enhancements to the Visual Basic language such as strict type checking and structured exception handling enable developers to write code that is more robust maintainable and less prone to runtime errorsNumber 3Powerful Windowsbased ApplicationsVisual Basic NET is the most productive tool for constructing powerful Microsoft Windowsbased applications The new Windows Forms Designer enables developers to get their desktop applications to market in less time New features include control anchoring and docking to eliminate the need for complex resize code the inplace menu editor to deliver WYSIWYG menu creation and the tab order editor to provide rapid application development RAD organization of controlsNumber 4Powerful Flexible Data AccessVisual Basic NET provides developers with both the ActiveX Data Objects ADO data access programming model that they know and love plus the new XMLbased Microsoft ADONET With ADONET developers gain access to more powerful components such as the DataSet control and a new strongly typed programming model that provides Microsoft IntelliSense statement completion within data access codeNumber 5Simplified Component CreationVisual Basic NET brings RAD to component development Developers can use nonvisual toolbox and server explorer components to easily incorporate resources such as message queues event logs and performance counters into their applications without writing a single line of codeNumber 6Enhanced 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experience for creating highly graphical and interactive relational data reports These reports can be generated for the entire array of Visual Basic NET application types including Windows Web and mobile applicationsNumber 9Easy Webbased Application DevelopmentVisual Basic NET delivers Visual Basic for the Web Using new Web Forms you can easily build true thinclient Webbased applications that intelligently render on any browser and on any platform Web Forms deliver the RAD programming experience of Microsoft Visual Basic 60 forms with the full power of Visual Basic NET rather than limited scripting capacity The new HTML designer delivers IntelliSense statement completion for HTML tags and the separation of user interface UI and code enable more efficient teambased developmentNumber 10Existing Investments Carry ForwardVisual Basic NET enables developers to leverage their existing investments in code and skills Windows Forms provides a robust container for Microsoft ActiveX controls Component Object Model COM Interoperability provides bidirectional communication between existing Visual Basic applications and those written with Visual Basic NET The upgrade wizard enables developers to seamlessly migrate up to 95 percent of existing code to Visual Basic NETPut these top 10 features to work in the applications you are building today with Visual Studio NET and Visual Basic NET

Market interest? (4, Interesting)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802804)

This is conjecture, and I don't necessarily agree with the opinions:

Most SMP machines are bought by large companies. They still view AMD chips as 'merely compatible' with Intel. They feel there may be incomplete compatibility. They are a lesser product. So, no interest, so nobody builds boards.

Also, there are no games that take advantage of SMP (that I know of) so the gamer rags won't be interested. That pretty much leaves small companies and Linux/*BSD tinkerers. Heck, I'd like one someday, but I'm only one person.

Re:Market interest? (2, Informative)

linzeal (197905) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802857)

SMP helps games by offloading all the system tasks/drivers/network stack on one proc while you use another proc completely. I really wish they would hurry up with the physics co-procs!

Re:Market interest? (2)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802906)

Hadn't thought of that. But don't you then need a SMP OS? And doesn't that mean Win2k Pro or WinXP Pro? The costs seem like they are really starting to stack up. (But, with hardcore gamers, that doesn't really seem to matter.)

Re:Market interest? (1)

linzeal (197905) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804094)

50 bucks for windows 2000 last I checked the local geek boutiques.

Re:Market interest? (2)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804275)

Funny you mention that. I was at the white box shop, and talking to a guy who was thinking of putting together a dual Xeon, and he mentioned Win2k and also said the price wasn't bad.

Re:Market interest? (1)

prophase_j (545900) | more than 12 years ago | (#3805374)

Yes, the price of Windows has gone dwon considerably. However, you need Windows 2000 Pro (2 proc), Windows 2000 Server (4 proc) or Windows 2000 Advanced Sever (8 proc)

I personaly want to get a dual sledgehammer.... but then i wouldn't need Windows 2k

Re:Market interest? (1)

dhwebb (526291) | more than 12 years ago | (#3805511)

2000 server only supports 4 processors if it is any upgrade from NT4 server. If it's a clean install, it only supports 2. Advanced 2000 server will support 4 on clean install or 8 if upgraded fron NT 4 Enterprise. Not trying to nitpick but make sure people get more clearer info. Of course, you probably got your info from MS which is of course going to be a little misleading. Heck, that's true for more companies than just MS though.

Re:Market interest? (1)

JPriest (547211) | more than 12 years ago | (#3812947)

And you've tried all these configurations to find out that MS is wrong and you are right?

Re:Market interest? (1)

hitzroth (60178) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802933)

Maybe we need a new section at slashdot. The petition. An electronic petition may not be anywhere as effective as USPS delivered missives, but it's gotta be better than nothing.

What could be done is to set up a system where each registered member can sign each petition once. And send the petition to the proper company/organization/public official/etc. after a certain date/number of signatures is reached.

Of course there are problems with this. With a relatively anonymous registration system, people can sign the petition with multiple accounts. And there's not really any way of auditing who's in what market/district/whatever without tightening the system. But still, it could give whomever the petition is directed to an idea about what people want.

Of course sending thousands of names and email addresses to a company could just be an invitation for spam... all kinds of potential problems.

Re:Market interest? (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803462)

dont forget quake3

Re:Market interest? (1)

gmhowell (26755) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804260)

Does that take advantage of SMP? Wouldn't know. I... Don't have a copy of Quake3:)

Re:Market interest? (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 12 years ago | (#3805981)

smp was the greatest idea of the game, its said to actualy hurt performance in some setups, but basicaly i think it was carmack showing off what an awsome programmer he is just besides being able to build game engines

MP CPUs (3, Informative)

perfectlynormalbeast (221743) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802852)

You're AMD CPUs lying around probably wouldn't work in a dual setup anyway. You need Athlon MP cpu's to work.

My view on why this hasn't taken off is that a single Athlon 2200 with DDR333 ram and other slick hardware will be nearly as fast as a dual Athlon MP2100 with DDR266 ram and cost fantastically less. The board isn't even the biggest problem. The chips themselves cost way more than their single cpu bretheren.

We have dual systems at work because we're developing server software and need dual machines to test on, but for most users they're very hard to cost/justify. I miss the old PGA celeron 366 days, when you building a dual system actually saved money.

One thing AMD could do to fight the battle with Intel would be to make all their CPUs dual capable. It's not so much a matter of cost, they just don't want to massacre their server market margins.

Re:MP CPUs (2, Insightful)

linzeal (197905) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802898)

You can still get normal palimono cores to work they just aren't certified and you will have to download a hacked bios.

Re:MP CPUs (1)

jjshoe (410772) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803475)

a hacked bios isnt even nesecery all the time, only in certain occasions. depends how lucky you get

Re:MP CPUs (1)

hawkbug (94280) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802948)

The thunderbird core socket A athlons work perfectly in SMP mode on the Tyan boards. Also, the palomino chips also work on the Thunder K7 boards. The later palomino chips simply need a little modifications to some traces on the chips themselves, and they also work in SMP mode and even recognized as MP cpus! That just goes to show AMD uses the same core for both, they just charge a lot more money for the "certified" chips because they want better margains.

Re:MP CPUs (1)

BJH (11355) | more than 12 years ago | (#3805887)

There's been more than one report on l-k of problems most likely caused by people using XPs where they should have used MPs, usually in floating point processing. Frankly, the only people interested in running XPs in an SMP box are skinflint gamers - anybody else would hand over the bucks for MPs (they're not that more expensive) in the knowledge that they're pretty much guaranteed to work.

Re:MP CPUs (2)

Papineau (527159) | more than 12 years ago | (#3808103)

I'm writing this from a dual XP 1800+ bought in last April, on an Asus A7M266-D motherboard. So it does work. Now, with their latest core changes, I might not be able to get the same thing and get it to work (XPs). See more competent sites for more info.

The only modification I needed to do was to drill (yes, drill) the mounting holes around the 2 sockets because I wanted to put heavier heatsinks. The holes are just not drilled on the Asus board; I think it ws something to do with EMI being too strong with the holes drilled, but I could be mistaken. Oh, and it's been as stable as it could get (80% of the reboots were because of grid power failures). But it does get hot. Quite hot.

As to the speed, it (as always) depends on what you're doing. I use my box primarily for development (compiling), desktop, games. If I really wanted to have the fastest for games, I'd replace my GeForce2. For the rest, compiling 2 or more files at the same time is faster than 2 or 3 speed grades and faster clocked memory (especially if it's CAS 3 instead of 2.5 or 2).

Several other SMP Athlon Boards (4, Informative)

questionlp (58365) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802876)

ASUS (A7M266-D) and IWill (MPX2) also make dual Athlon motherboards, though I'm not sure how much they cost. I think Abit and Gigabyte have announced if not released dual Athlon motherboards. Yes, they are not as cheap as the dual Socket 370 (or even Slot 1) motherboards on the Intel side of things, but part of the cost disparity is the complexity of the 760MP/760MPX chipset (the chipset requires two sets of traces to the two processors since the EV6 bus protocol is point-to-point rather than shared like the AGTL/GTL/GTL+ used by the Intel processors) and the 64-bit PCI slots.

I'm guessing that a lot of the dual P3 processor motherboards are only 4-layer whereas the dual Athlon boards are more likely to be 6 (or even 8) layers due to the enormous number of traces and the power comsumption required for all of the components.

BTW - You can run a dual Athlon setup with a ~430W power supply, just make sure that it is one of the AMD (or motherboard manufacturer) recommended ones and can reliably provide enough current across the necessary voltage rails.

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (1)

rikkus-x (526844) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802993)

ASUS (A7M266-D) and IWill (MPX2) also make dual Athlon motherboards, though I'm not sure how much they cost.

My ASUS was GBP 200.

BTW - You can run a dual Athlon setup with a ~430W power supply

I'm using a 340W.

My notes about life with the A7M266-D [rikkus.info]

I'm very happy with my dual athlon box. I need the CPU grunt to compile lots of C++ code all day (g++ is horribly slow, as is the Linux linker.)

Why didn't I buy Intel ? Simple. To get an equivalent level of performance, I'd have had to pay twice as much.

Rik

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (1)

questionlp (58365) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803087)

I didn't think a 340W power supply would cut it. The two power supplies that I have used on a dual Athlon setup were a 430W then upgraded it to a 550W. Of course, the server has 2x2000+ MPs, 1GB of RAM, 5x 7200RPM IDE hard drives, Adaptec 2400A IDE RAID controller. The 430W power supply had little trouble maintaining a decent +12V level, the move to the 550W resolved that problem and it has another fan to help suck some of the heat out.

I'm looking into a dual Athlon system myself (right now, I have a dual P2-400 system... only reason is that dual AMD K6-2/K6-3's were not possible and there were no other decent alternatives) but I may wait a little bit longer until either the T-Breds get settled down or when the Bartons (supposedly with 512K L2 cache) is released and settled down.

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (1)

rikkus-x (526844) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804834)

That's all very impressive, but I don't think the problem is that the power supply can't handle the load. If this was true, why would it be fine if the motherboard had been powered down completely, but refuse to start if the motherboard was still 'active' ? I only have 1 IDE hard drive and a CD-ROM. Watching lm_sensors, there is no noticeable fluctuation in voltage levels when I crank the box up to full load.

I have heard that this is actually a motherboard bug, not fixable with BIOS upgrade. Don't quote me on that though, it's second hand information and I haven't been able to verify it yet.

Rik

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (1)

questionlp (58365) | more than 12 years ago | (#3807352)

A power supply can continue to provide acceptable power to the motherboard and the rest of the components, but depending on the load and the fan speeds (all of the case fans have temperature sensors to adjust the fan speed as necessary) the voltage may or may not fluctuate outside of the acceptable range.

In the case of the 430W power supply, the voltage captured by the monitoring software got outside of the slightly modified safe voltage range when the server was under a lot of load (all of the hard drives were cranking and both CPUs were pegged at around 90%). All of the fans that were monitored were running at full speed... The 5V rails were kind of fine and was able to provide the power needed to keep the processors crunching, but the 12V rails (which power the hard drives, fans and other items) wasn't fairing so well. Instead of spending a lot of time researching, we replaced it with an Enermax 550W power supply and it seemed to help keep the voltage within a comfortable range. The 430W power supply was not wasted but used to replace an older 330W power supply that we know couldn't handle multiple 10K RPM hard drives and dual P3's :)

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (2)

dimator (71399) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804160)

Thanks for the MB notes on your site. I was lookin to buy one of those suckers, and you might have saved me some elbow grease getting things running smoothly. I bookmarked your site as well, because some of the other docs seem worth reading. :)

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (2)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803248)

I have an asus 266D. It runs very nicely (albeit hot) and has for some time. It cost me ~$150 about 3-4 months ago. I have an Enermax 400W which has been fine, even with a gf2 64m and 3 hard drives in the box.

Einux [einux.com] is a proper company that sells dual athlon machines in 1-2u cases for companies.

Re:Several other SMP Athlon Boards (2)

Papineau (527159) | more than 12 years ago | (#3808146)

I bought the ASUS A7M266-D last April. It cost me $CAN 380 + shipping + tax. My previous computer was a dual PII-400 with an ASUS P2BD. The motherboard cost me $CAN 390 + taxes 2 years ago. Both of these boards don't have any kind of integrated NIC, video, SCSI, nor raid. Just a solid, barebone motherboard. So the cost argument is not necessarily bad: the 10 bucks difference plus inflation makes it OK. BTW, that same board (A7M266-D) has lowered to around $CAN 330 around here since then.

For the PSU, I use an Enermax 465. I know a couple people had problems with some Enermax PSU and dual Athlons (no specifics, sorry, it's been a while), but I didn't. And it's been running almost 24/24 for 3 months.

Intel Rules( currently) (2, Insightful)

caesar79 (579090) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802886)

Hi..
to re-ingite the debate between Intel and AMD, I dont subscribe to the age-old and well beaten viewpoint that AMD's architecture is better. There are only two known ways to improve performance : parallelism and clock speed. AMD has chosen the former while Intel chose the latter. Who's to say which is better ?
next AMD's current Athlon MP and XP processor dont rule. They are beaten hollow by Intel, considering that Intel Xeons have 128KB more on chip cache and not to mention atleast a 700MHz clock speed advantage. Along with the PC1066 RDRAM, they rock. AMD is nowhere nearby, still stuck with DDR266.
Throughbred will have the same core as Athlon XP , but will be manufactured as 0.13nm , thereby providing slightly higher clock speeds and cooler operation. But I dont see that beating Intel, since Intel will easily be out with 3G+ procs by them. Rumours abound that Intel has a 10G+ procs in its labs...is that true ???
The only hope is for AMD is the hammer series due next year. Then we will have some interesting comparisions to make. That leaves the current Athlon Mp's at the end of the cycle. Not worth it, since u wont be able to upgrade the procs any day. and resale value sucks.
If you are buying a dual-proc box, stick to Intel Xeons with PC1066...u shud easily be able to upgrade later on. though of course, u shud have the moolah to do it.

10GHz processors (1)

linuxator (529956) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803082)

This 10GHz processor story is a rumor from someone who visited intel labs and had a look on prototype 10GHz ALU, not processor. And i believe it's also a hoax.

Truth is that for example IBM has some semiconductors in lab with higher clock speeds then 10GHz, but they are fiber recivers, transmitters and stuff like that, but for sure - not x86 compatible processors. And things what are new in labs, aren't expected in public yet...

Re:Intel Rules( currently) (1)

purdue_thor (260386) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803344)

I don't think it's as cut and dry as that. First, I do scientific computing. So, when I look at the floating point performance of the two, the AMD chips rate very well... and extremely well on a price/performance metric. Intel chips perform very well where the application has been optimized for SSE, but for straight FP the Athlons are really nice.

>>AMD is nowhere nearby, still stuck with DDR266.

Then you'd better hurry up and buy your Intel boards with RDRAM b/c Intel is doing away with it [anandtech.com] and going with dual channel DDRAM. Guess it can't be that bad, huh?

The problem with the market right now is that it seems AMD is having all their engineers work on Hammer and so the Athlon line is slowing. In the meantime, the P4 is starting to hit its stride after its initital poor showing (remember the initial benchmarks that showed the P4 1.4GHz getting beat by a 1GHz PIII?).

Intel drools (currently; for SMP, anyway) (2)

Lumpish Scholar (17107) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803398)

So I can buy two Intel Pentium III Xeon CPUs at 0.7 or 0.9 GHz (which will likely not scale linearly, and thus will not give me twice the power of just one of those chips); or I can buy one Pentium IV or AMD Athlon at twice the effective clock speed and a much cheaper motherboard, etc. (Heck, I can buy an Intel Celeron at 1.7 GHz!)

To quote Robert Bruce Thompson [hardwareguys.com] (Google cache [216.239.51.100] ) from the end of May:
There has been a stunning turn-around in dual-processor systems. In early 2001, most Intel processors were dual-capable, SMP Intel motherboards were widely available inexpensively, and AMD had no dual-processor solution at all. Now, the situation is almost exactly reversed. Intel's mainstream processors, the Pentium 4 and Celeron, are no longer dual-capable. If you want to run dual Intel processors, your only real choice is the obsolescent and hard-to-find Pentium III or the expensive Xeon, and Intel no longer manufactures mainstream dual processor motherboards. Conversely, all mainstream AMD processors (prior to the Athlon XP/MP silliness) are dual-capable, and inexpensive motherboards based on the excellent AMD760MP and AMD760MPX chipsets are widely available.


All trademarks are held by their owners.

P.S.: It's very strange to type "0.9 GHz"!

Re:Intel Rules( currently) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3804353)

The next idiot who responds to an ASK SLASHDOT to go off on his opinion, without coming within 10 feet of the question, needs to have his Slashdot account revoked. And for the original poster, if you really want AMD MP stick with the Tyan mobos. They've been out longer then the others so teething pains should be gone. And just get XP procs and unlock them. Id post a link but im lazy and its not that hard to google for "amd xp unlocking".

Re:Intel Rules( currently) (1)

lsdino (24321) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804755)

next AMD's current Athlon MP and XP processor dont rule. They are beaten hollow by Intel, considering that Intel Xeons have 128KB more on chip cache and not to mention atleast a 700MHz clock speed advantage. Along with the PC1066 RDRAM, they rock. AMD is nowhere nearby, still stuck with DDR266.


I think when it comes to Dual processors that they DO rule. Currently dual-proc P4 boards are running in the mid 300s, and that's for the low-ball dealers on pricewatch - so we're talking OEM box, crappy warranty, etc... By the time you go retail you're talking around >390. If you want to get a better than "the cheapest P4 motherboard" you're going to be paying even more.

For $400 you can get an Asus A7M266-D & 1 Athlon MP - which is a much better deal.

Basically AMD is back to playing to the low-cost market, but that should be familiar territory to them. Now they can offer good performance though :)

Re:Intel Rules( currently) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3805951)

Its funny, but the same geeks that rant, rave and drool over DEC's Alpha usually deride the P4.

Its the same approach. Design chips that you can clock to obscene levels, and then try to extract parallelism. Each die shrink gets you much higher gains than you get if you reverse the goals.

Witness AMD vs Intel in the latest round.

Of course, bang for $-wise, AMD still has some room to maneuver, but the days of the top of the line AMD chip slaughtering a top of the line Intel chip for $70 less are over.

Re:Intel Rules( currently) (2)

Papineau (527159) | more than 11 years ago | (#3808315)

You compare Xeons to XPs and MPs. Fine with me, just don't forget to compare the Xeons with Hammer when it comes out (because Itanium won't stand it). Oh, and check here [anandtech.com] for a database comparison of Xeons and MPs. Interesting, no? You can check the rest of the article if you absolutely need some charts with a Xeon on top.

Thoroughbred is here now [pricewatch.com] . Where's that 3GHz+ proc? Oh, and here's [anandtech.com] a link to the report of the 10GHz ALU. Remember, it's not a complete processor, just a small part (Arithmetic and Logic Unit).

For the Hammer, I agree: it's where AMD's future is. But the Tualatin PIII was also doomed from it's conception. As was the PIV 423 platform.

And what's wrong with just keeping the computer together for a couple of years? My dual PII-400 has 3 years this month: never changed the procs (in part because to go higher than 600MHz, I'd have to change the MB because mine doesn't play well with CuMine CPUs). So far for "upgradeability" in the future...

dual Athlon systems (1)

tps12 (105590) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802924)

Those dual Athlon systems are going to be hot commodities come winter.

Re:dual Athlon systems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3803430)

No, they run much hotter in the summer.

Though, anybody with that kind of energy budget probably runs an air conditioned shop anyway.

A few non-Tyan boards (4, Informative)

zsazsa (141679) | more than 12 years ago | (#3802958)

ASUS A7M266-D [asus.com.tw]
Gigabyte GA-7DPXDW [gigabyte.com.tw] and GA-7DPXDW-C [gigabyte.com.tw]
MSI K7D Master [msicomputer.com]

The problem with these boards is that they aren't really any cheaper than the Tyan boards (last I checked.) I think the reasons for the high cost are the AMD 760MP/760MPX chipset and the fact that AMD processors suck a lot more juice than the P3s and Celerons that worked on the cheapie Intel dual boards.

Ian

Not ready (1)

linuxator (529956) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803010)

AFAIK AMD processors are still not ready for heavy multiprocessing yet... I think it's better to wait for hammer series that should have good support for SMP > 2 processors. On other thought, i may be wrong...:)

Where to buy? (2)

smoondog (85133) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803037)

I'm going to be upgrading a compute heavy web server to a dual (or even quad!) AMD system soon. Does anyone have any good links for reasonable vendors that can preconfigure dual and quad AMD systems (as a good starting point)?

-Sean

Re:Where to buy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3803237)

No quads yet. I question your abilities to assemble this system without screwing it up if you don't have a grasp on the basics.

Re:Where to buy? (3, Informative)

alienmole (15522) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803479)

If you want quad CPU, you have to go Intel - AMD doesn't support quad. Quad systems tend to be very expensive, though (anyone who knows differently, please tell me!) You might be better off going to a server farm solution with a number of cheaper boxes, if possible.

Dual CPU systems are a pretty ordinary item these days - any reputable vendor that sells them should be fine. There, you have a choice of AMD or Intel. As the submitter of this topic points out, though, if you're specifying parts yourself (even if someone else is building them for you), at the lower end you'll find the Intel solution can be quite a bit cheaper overall, because of the low cost and wide selection of dual CPU Intel motherboards.

So if you're looking for a low cost, high performance dual CPU setup, Intel is the answer. But if you must have AMD for whatever reason, find a vendor who'll sell you something similar to the Ars Technica God Box [arstechnica.com] . The Tyan Tiger MPX motherboard is excellent.

A listing of AMD-Duals (2, Informative)

grayrest (468197) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803039)


Asus A7M266-D AMD762 DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $199

Gigabyte GA-7DPXDW AMD760 RAID DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $250

MSI K7D Master MPX AMD762 DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $205

Tyan K7 (S2462UNG) AMD760 SCSI DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $409

Tyan (S2462NG) AMD760 REG DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $305.00

...More Tyan Thunders, all over $300...

Tyan Tiger (S2466-4M) AMD760-MPX DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $209.00

Tyan Tiger (S2460) AMD760 DDR (AMD Dual MP) [monarchcomputer.com] -- $168.00


Prices and links to Monarch Computers. I was quite surprised with the prices, I thought they'd be in the $125-$150 range. I my dual AMD shopping at Monarch (built a dual MP 1600+ on a tyan tiger mobo in december for a friend), you can hit pricewatch for price comparison, but I've found Monarch to be fairly representative.



As you can see, there are quite a few motherboards on the market, you can get reviews of most of them off http://www.amdmb.com . Of all of them, I recommend the cheapest Tiger with the older 760 chipset. I know that reviewers have gotten both non-MP athlons and durons to run on the system. I'm not sure if current XP processors will work, there was talk three months ago about AMD thinking about locking out the SMP capabilities out of the XPs, but they did not do this with older versions. The main difference between the XPs and the MPs is that the MPs are certified for SMP operation, if you want a cheap and powerful server (which appears to be your goal) then you probably don't care that your chips are uncertified. The newer 760-MPX chipset (last I heard) still has isses with the southbridge's USB 2.0 and most motherboards ship with an add-in card. I can't recommend it because I'm not sure if the chipset checks for MPs or not.


Of course, YMMV.

Re:A listing of AMD-Duals (1)

questionlp (58365) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803139)

Prices and links to Monarch Computers. I was quite surprised with the prices, I thought they'd be in the $125-$150 range. I my dual AMD shopping at Monarch (built a dual MP 1600+ on a tyan tiger mobo in december for a friend), you can hit pricewatch for price comparison, but I've found Monarch to be fairly representative.
As stated in an earlier post [slashdot.org] , the reason why the motherboards cost so much is that the 760MP/MPX chipsets are quite complex and expensive (the northbridge has around 900+ pins if my memory serves me right) and due to the number of traces required by not only the northbridge but also the 64-bit PCI slots.
The newer 760-MPX chipset (last I heard) still has isses with the southbridge's USB 2.0 and most motherboards ship with an add-in card. I can't recommend it because I'm not sure if the chipset checks for MPs or not.
The southbridge only has USB 1.1, not 2.0, but it did have some problems with the USB controller. A second stepping (B, IIRC) has been in production and on several motherboards and it has fixed the issue with the USB controller. Unfortunately, it looks like the MP and the MPX chipsets are running into issues with the Promise FastTrack ATA RAID controllers (one mention of it here [2cpu.com] .

Re:A listing of AMD-Duals (1)

BJH (11355) | more than 12 years ago | (#3805901)

Yeah, but the MPX chipset gives you 64bit/66MHz PCI slots, whereas the MP only has 64bit/33MHz. Why limit yourself to half the bandwidth?

Re:A listing of AMD-Duals (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3831888)

Because anyone using 64b/66MHz PCI cards (of which I've seen exactly one in four Seattle screwdriver shops) obviously isn't concerned about money?

NewEgg vs Monarch (1)

NoWhereMan (3539) | more than 12 years ago | (#3811837)

I was doing research a couple weeks ago to find a new motherboard. I was impressed with the Monarch deals, but I finally opted to buy the Tyan Tiger MP S2460 from NewEgg because they still were offering the 1.2 Ghz Palomino cpus for only $79. This new system is 2-3 times faster than my dual Pentium III Coppermine system. It is amazing to see these 1.2 Ghz Athlons cream the 1.0 Ghz Pentium III chips. I regret buying that D6VAA motherboard now :(

Watch out for Monarch (1)

Malduin (207683) | more than 12 years ago | (#3811991)

I purchased a couple of Abit KG7 boards and XP 1700 and 1900 procs from Monarch around November 2001 and had a hell of a time trying to get them returned when the boards they shipped were bad. It took me two months to get it all straightened out. Their support is slow, and they also don't pay much attention to what the customer has to say. *sigh* But their popularity has grown (their prices are certainly some of the best) and maybe the darker stuff that nobody wants to think about or deal with (RMA!) is much better.

My two cents..

Re:A listing of AMD-Duals (1)

JPriest (547211) | more than 12 years ago | (#3812954)

The Iwill MPX2 [2cpu.com] is another.

Re:A listing of AMD-Duals (1)

JPriest (547211) | more than 12 years ago | (#3816035)

And the MSI K7D Master [viahardware.com]

Who cares? (-1)

Seth Finkelstien (582610) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803081)

Who cares about Motherboard prices, when our very freedom is under attack by one of the editors of Slashdot... (the self proclaimed "yro" guy) Michael Sims. He hijacked the Censorware project from me, and I have hated him ever since.

Wrong Component (5, Informative)

Perdo (151843) | more than 12 years ago | (#3803422)

So you spend 200 bucks on an MPX motherboard and 150 each for a pair of 1800mp CPUs. (2*1533mhz)

Or spend 100 bucks on a Dual Pentium III motherboard and 150 each for a pair of tulatin Pentium IIIs that are not performance comparative. (2*1133mhz)

The first Dual Pentium 4 motherboard starts at $400 and $200 each for the processors... at the same performance level that AMD provides for $500

$400 for the crappy intel.
$500 for the AMD
$800 for the good intel, that performs no better than the AMD, so you just want to pay $300 for the name.

Their absolute top end systems perform comparatively MP 2100+ vs. Intel Xeon 2.4GHz [anandtech.com]

$1400 for the Xeon, $700 for the AMD MP.

Don't forget the Rambus Tax that doubles the price of any memory you purchase for the Intel system. No, there are no DDR solutions for the Xeon yet.

Re:Wrong Component (2, Informative)

megabeck42 (45659) | more than 12 years ago | (#3804481)

>> No, there are no DDR solutions for the Xeon yet.

Actually, yes, yes there are. Of course, they are registered ECC DDR solutions, but - they are DDR.

Behold, The SuperMicro P4DP6 [supermicro.com]

There are a number of Intel E7500 based boards from Tyan and Supermicro. However, IMHO, the Rambus is a better option for the P4, which, after all, was designed for Rambus and takes a hit with SDRAM.

Re:Wrong Component (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3805250)

Add in all the cooling and the bigger powersupply for the AMD, and the difference ain't that much.

The PIII is for low power & heat configs <= 1U. That doesn't make it 'crappy'.

Re:Wrong Component (2)

Wakko Warner (324) | more than 12 years ago | (#3805325)

You can easily power a dual AMD board on a 350-watt PSU. There are several which are rated to work with the Athlon MP. If you absolutely need a bigger PSU, you can get a 400 or 500 watt PSU for less than $100.

How much more cooling do you need? My dual AMD system has a fan on each CPU and two in the case (one is for the hard drives.)

The PIII is for low power & heat configs

We had problems with our Pentium iii 1u machines overheating at my last job. That made it 'crappy'.

- A.P.

Re:Wrong Component (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3805817)

As to your shitty sig, "Ungrounded Lightning Rod" has the greatest sig on in slashdot history.

more complex bus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#3804242)

2 Intel chips, one 100/133/whatever bus.
2 AMD chips, 2 independent 100/133 buses.

Thats makes it that much harder to build one cheaply.

Dual Athlon XP is better... (1)

freddoh (589922) | more than 12 years ago | (#3813342)

...because cheaper. Avoid the MPX chipset as plague.
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