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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone.


I have two questions that, in my situation, have nothing to do with my HT, but seeing as many of us have extensive hardware experience, why would I go to a different message board?


First question.


Since I've never been a heavy gamer, I only use 3D card horsepower for Lightwave and Maya designs, so I've never had any first hand experience with current Nvidia chips. Now, my my home 3d work needs some extra power under a tight budget. I'm looking towards a Geforce 3 to replace a Radeon. After years of fun with ATI's drivers, I finally get to the question.


-Which Geforce 3Ti manufacturer (Asus, Elsa, etc) Has the best driver support and track record for AMD machines.


If you have advice on that, I appreciate any response.


Question #2:


The time is nearly here for affordable dual AMD systems!!! The AMD XPs are based of the Palomino core right? And the AMD MP 1.0 and 1.2 Ghz chips are Palomino as well. So the AMD MP XP 1500 etc. chips differ only from the 1.0 and 1.2 in clock speed. Correct? I'm just gearing up to buy and want to make sure that the 1.0 and 1.2 aren't inferior in anything but clockspeed.


Thanks for your time.
 

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I can't help you with the AMD question but the geforce cards are really all the same. Most stick to the specs from Nvidia. I have a Gainward geforce2 and they have to be honest a pretty pathetic site but the card works well and is built to the same standard as others it has a good fan for overclocking. My flatmate has a Leadtech which has built in temperature measurment device. I have also heard that some companies use different TV-out systems giving varieing degrees of quality and creative give specific custom driver access to card features.


Basically what all that above says that aprt from peripheral features all cards are the same and it is infact Nvidia who provide the best drivers.


For CAD given the choice I would buy an Elsa they usually have good CAD specific features but you can run softqaudro on any card which gives you access to some of the expensive quadro card features on a regular consumer card. Theres some elsa program specifc apps that tewak things for autocad and 3dmax.


This is not an ATI situation Nvidia are regular with there driver updates and they have real performance advantages and they work with all the card manufacturer boards.


Hope that was some help,


Martin
 

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Q1:


The cards are almost always the same reference design, with maybe a different color PCB, different heatsink/fan and a thermistor. Everyone uses the same drivers.


There are pages you can find where you do some very light soldering and have a near perfect Quadro card that enables a lot of extra features.


Q2:

You're right as far as I know.
 

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Hi Seawolf:


___You should have probably asked this in a tech forum ;) As Deeopey mentioned, the Elsa’s usually have better designed output stages for a slightly sharper picture. Canopus used to be another manufacturer with a HQ GeForce design reputation but pulled out of the GeForce market here in the states due to the competition from just about everybody under the sun. If your AMD based MB will accept a GeForce3 which all the latest ones will with the proper PS to power the box up, it doesn’t matter which you choose since you will be using the Nvidia Reference drivers and the build quality is pretty even across the board. I am speaking of build quality, not design quality here where I still believe the Elsa’s would excel.


___In regards to the XP xx00 +’s, they are not MP certified and therefore may not work in an SMP environment. I know you did not ask about this but I wanted to throw that in there if you were thinking about using them in an SMP box instead. They may work the same but I am not sure just yet? The MP’s will work in an SMP box of course but as you have seen, AMD asks a delta ($60.00 - $80.00 per chip) for those certified MP CPU’s. A few other things to add here. The MP 1200’s are not the same as the MP 1600 – 1800’s as they (the 1000/1200’s) were built off the older ceramic packages. Make sure that if you are going to go with a dual MP setup that you purchase the MP 1500/1600/1800’s and not the older MP 1000/1200’s. Do not expect 100% increase in performance with an SMP XP + box but anywhere from -10 to ~ + 90% depending on the app you use. With a multi-threaded app, I do not think you will be disappointed in any way ;) Also, the SMP MP boards available currently are severely lacking in what most would consider a minimum of features before consideration in a high performance single today. I read an article that Epox was possibly coming out with an enthusiast dual built off the KT266A for both the workstation and performance enthusiasts but I do not know where I saw the article nor what the feature set will include? Anyway, I don’t think it will be available for a few months yet anyway.


___Good Luck


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My Thanks, you closet techies!


With answers like these, who needs a tech forum?


I appreciate the info on the geforces, I'm leaning towards an Elsa at the moment, and then I'll take a look at soldering it. Of course, all that gets to wait until I get my new system.


As for AMD.


-Xcel and pocatello : That becomes the ~$100 question.


Basically, as far as I've learnt, the difference between an AMD Thunderbird and an XP Palomino is this. The XP chips have the new Palomino core design, are manufactured differently and are printed on a new ceramic. (Plus the new marketing)


Now, from what Xcel mentioned, it looks like the first 2 production runs of the MPs (1000, 1200) were using the old ceramic but the new Palomino core? So if the difference between the MP (1.0 and 12.2 VS 1.33 etc...) is the ceramic, what type of improvements, besides heat dissipation does the new ceramic offer?


My Responses for a couple of other comments I've noticed.


Xcel: The new line of boards that -HOPEFULLY- will be released this month are going to be using a new chipset from AMD. This will let users use any current pair of AMD athlon chips together (Duron, Tbird, MP, XP, etc...) The information I've dug up leads me to expect Asus, Abit and MSI boards on the market before xmas. This chipset will also accept any type of SDRAM setup (DDR, 133, 100, NonECC, unregistered, etc...) I too have lost the articles I found the information on, but one had a picture and specs of Asus' board. I read that the MP chips should also give an extra 10% of efficiency over regular XP chips of the same speed.


I'm also aware that 2 CPU's won't double my system's efficiency, but it will offer some nice improvements to make my life easier. Personally, I still have 2 Tbird 750 systems. One's my HT, and the other has been promised to a friend once I go SMP. I'm waiting for the Asus board, then I'll try dual 750s before buying the MP chips.


Pocatello: Thanks for the links, still reading.....


Everyone: Thanks for the time and please excuse my skepticism regarding drivers, I'm an ATI user...


-Mark
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Seawolf

Basically, as far as I've learnt, the difference between an AMD Thunderbird and an XP Palomino is this. The XP chips have the new Palomino core design, are manufactured differently and are printed on a new ceramic. (Plus the new marketing)
Yes. Except it's not ceramic, it's a sort of plastic-like stuff that is apparently "organic." Ewwww. The XP chips give out less heat than the "old" TBs - the 1800+ (actually 1.56GHz) XP has the same heat output as the TB 1.4GHz, which is a good thing. The XP chips also have an inbuilt thermal diode on the core to measure core temperature, like the P3s and P4s, but motherboards don't yet support temperature measurement from the diode yet.
Quote:
Now, from what Xcel mentioned, it looks like the first 2 production runs of the MPs (1000, 1200) were using the old ceramic but the new Palomino core? So if the difference between the MP (1.0 and 12.2 VS 1.33 etc...) is the ceramic, what type of improvements, besides heat dissipation does the new ceramic offer?
None, and the "pencil trick" for overclocking doesn't work on the new OPGA package.
Quote:
Xcel: The new line of boards that -HOPEFULLY- will be released this month are going to be using a new chipset from AMD. This will let users use any current pair of AMD athlon chips together (Duron, Tbird, MP, XP, etc...)
Durons, especially the 1GHz and above chips which contain many of the new features of the XP chips (hardware pre-fetch, full SSE, etc.), work fine in SMP in current boards. TBs seem to be a bit unreliable, but most work. I have only seen successful reports of getting XPs to work in SMP, but there is a lot of rumour that this will not be the case soon. The 760MPX chipset will not add any additional processor compatibility features over the 760MP chipset. In fact, I've just had a brainwave: the 760MPX is probably what will cause XPs to stop working in SMP.
Quote:
The information I've dug up leads me to expect Asus, Abit and MSI boards on the market before xmas. This chipset will also accept any type of SDRAM setup (DDR, 133, 100, NonECC, unregistered, etc...) I too have lost the articles I found the information on, but one had a picture and specs of Asus' board.
There will be a Gigabyte board, it has been on show (in prototype form) here in Japan for several weeks. It's due out in the next week or so.


I have not heard the "any type of RAM" promise anywhere and in fact I believe it to be incorrect. PC133 or PC100 RAM compatibility would be pointless (RAM is so cheap today anyway, plus there is a significant performance hit going backwards to non-DDR). Current SMP boards (ie. the Tiger and the Thunder) require registered RAM once more than two slots are filled because of signal timing issues and they are intended as server or workstation boards anyway, where data integrity is important. Every registered DIMM also has ECC, so that's not really a requirement per se, you just get it for free. I don't expect the need to use registered DDR DIMMs in SMP boards to change one whit when the 760MPX chipset boards come out.


I believe the 760-class chipsets cannot technically accept non-DDR RAM - they are built to use DDR from the ground up.
Quote:
I read that the MP chips should also give an extra 10% of efficiency over regular XP chips of the same speed.
No, they are exactly the same core.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
JamesW : Thanks for the info. I'd forgotten about the temperature diode.


Organic chips eh? Sounds kind of dirty like the 'promotional' cream filled cookies we received from Microsoft for XP. I'm not eating a Bill Gates cookie with white stuff in the middle whether I like his OSes or not! :cool:


As for the RAM, I apologize, I read that the new chipset would allow the use of non registered DDR and assumed that SDRAM would work.


Thank you for your insight.


I'll check the pricing when the motherboards come out and I'll go after the best price/performance including the 1.0 and 1.2 and MP XP 1+00s.


-Mark
 

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The guys over at GAMEPC.COM must have been psychic; they have done a new set of tests with the "XP" and the "MP" processors. They conclude that they are identical. They even put one "XP" and one "MP" in the same dual processor motherboard, and everything worked fine. See the link below for the article. by the way, my next computer will be purchased from gamepc.com. They have an excellent web site, with a regular "mailbag" column, and lots of great reviews.


If you are interested in getting a cheap dual processor system, nothing seems to beat the Tyan motherboard with the Athlon XP. Rumors of other motherboards from other manufacturers are common, but they are not on the market yet.

http://www.gamepc.com/reviews/hardwa...1&mscssid=&tp=
 

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Hi Seawolf:


___When in doubt, go to the source . As an HTPC platform, I am not so sure it will accept a multitude of 32-bit PCI devices whereas the Epox info was discussing a non-Server platform using a modded dual KT266A if I remember correctly? It may have also used the 760 MP as well?


___As far as the new packaging is concerned, it is more flexible and can take a little bit more abuse before breaking as a lot of new AMD users have seen with chipped and broken cores in the past. HS installation was the biggest culprit. Especially before the 4 rubber mounts or a shim were included/made available earlier this year. The thermal properties of the package is not what gives the XP/MP’s their lower thermal output but help in that the chip has a bit more flexibility to expand/contract on the new package vs. the much more rigid Ceramic of the T-Bird/Duron’s and before. Anand had a whole article based on the packaging technology of the Intel and AMD CPU’s to date as well as into the future if you want more information. The Organic package has been available under the socket based Celeron II’s/PIII’s/P4’s for quite some time. I also am looking forward to some links for the new SMP boards due by Christmas as well so if you do come across them, drop me a PM ;)


___Finally, the XP1800 and 1900 + (just 1.5 W separate the two) actually produces less heat than the older 1.4 GHz T-Bird by ~ 5 W which makes almost silent CPU cooling a possibility. I can’t wait for an nForce to try out the new XP’s myself ;)


___Good Luck


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks to everyone for their attention on an OT topic. Now that I have an idea beforehand, and some links to read through, I'll be ready to throw my money away in a month or so!


Re: heat issues. Since it's not for the HT, I've no concern for the sound the machine makes, but I am familliar with overheating.


I make machines for myself and my friends and I remember the first time I tried putting a Goldenorb on an AMD. I thought I'd break the chip!!!! Fortunately, it didn't, but months later I found out the hard way that I had bought a bad batch of coolers. Two died in a week. One's fan rotor sheared off and the other died!


On the other hand, I live in Canada, and winter's a coming so I'll here nothing of these 'cool' chips eh!


I can't find the article for Asus's board, but it linked to a Taiwan site with a picture of one in a sales (demo?) package. It supposedly supported non registered RAM and had some 64bit PCIs. When I stumble across it, I'll break my lurking habits again!


Thanks,

-Mark
 

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No problem Mark.


Apparently the 760MP boards will work with a maximum of 2 unregistered DIMMs, although the Tiger MP manual says the board won't even POST without a registered DIMM being present, so who knows.


Yes, I just bit the bullet and yesterday bought a Tiger MP, some Nanya RAM, a 60GB Maxtor D740X, and I'll buy a pair of 1700+ XPs today or tomorrow. I'll let you know if it's a huge disaster. :)


With CPU cooling, plan to use an 80 or 90mm fan, possibly with an adapter on a standard heatsink like the Thermoengine. They're much quieter and more efficient than those screaming 60mm banshees.
 

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James,


Let us know how you like your new Tiger MP computer.


Did you get the motherboard with the onboard SCSI? Why or why not?


I'm looking at buying this same system.


Thanks,
 

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Hi James:


___Two HS’s. The Noise Control Silverado’s but they are a bit expensive or the even better Alpha Pal8045 w/ your choice of 80x80mm quiet fan solution. Both work great on the older 1.4 GHz T-Birds and will work even better on the XP’s given their even lower thermal output all the way up to the XP 1900 +’s! The Alpha’s are large HS’s similar to the Swiftech’s and do not fit on all AMD equipped boards however :(


___Good Luck


___Wayne R. Gerdes

___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.

___ [email protected]
 
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