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Quad-CPU motherboard


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Not sure if anyone's already seen this... it's news to me! :)

 

Tyan has released the Thunder K8QS PC motherboard, supporting up to 4 AMD Opteron processors. It also includes a SATA raid controller onboard.

 

The unit pictured does not seem to have an AGP slot, though, as its intended for server applications. There's an onboard graphics chip, but that could be a deal-breaker for someone who'd want dual monitors in a workstation setup.

Stephen Fortner

Principal, Fortner Media

Former Editor in Chief, Keyboard Magazine

Digital Piano Consultant, Piano Buyer Magazine

 

Industry affiliations: Antares, Arturia, Giles Communications, MS Media, Polyverse

 

 

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Is there any version of Windows that can handle more than 2 processors? Linux and the BSDs have for years and years, but i'm ignorant when it comes to Windows....

 

Aldnln iRobot?

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WWND?

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Originally posted by phaeton:

Is there any version of Windows that can handle more than 2 processors? Linux and the BSDs have for years and years, but i'm ignorant when it comes to Windows....

 

Aldnln iRobot?

Windows NT 4 Server (enterprise)

Windows 2000 Server

Windows 2003 server

 

DOS 6.22 :cool:

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Originally posted by Stephen Fortner:

Not sure if anyone's already seen this... it's news to me! :)

 

Tyan has released the Thunder K8QS PC motherboard, supporting up to 4 AMD Opteron processors. It also includes a SATA raid controller onboard.

 

The unit pictured does not seem to have an AGP slot, though, as its intended for server applications. There's an onboard graphics chip, but that could be a deal-breaker for someone who'd want dual monitors in a workstation setup.

It's not designed for anything, but and only a server.

20GB RAM...sweet! .... hence no AGP slot.

 

Is anyone making a PCI dual output video card? If it's for a DAW, how important is video SPEED?

 

NYC Drew

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Windows NT 4 Server (enterprise)

Windows 2000 Server

Windows 2003 server

 

DOS 6.22

 

Excellent!!

 

I'm probably going to call "bullshit" on that last one, though...

 

Unfortunately, i don't think any of those other three are recommended DAW platforms... But thenagain, i dun use teh windows so i dunno ;)

Dr. Seuss: The Original White Rapper

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WWND?

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Is anyone making a PCI dual output video card? If it's for a DAW, how important is video SPEED?

Look for the Matrox Parhelia. It supports 3 monitors. Maybe more. DAW use standard 2D video which any card nowadays runs just fine.

 

As for DAWS supporting Quad Processors. Well in NT and Windows 2000/2003 software cannot talk directly to the hardware. There is an Hardware A Abstraction Layer(HAL) that handles all the calls. So therefore when you run a Multiprocessor app it will benefit from having 4 versus 2 processors as a base. I'm pretty sure a developer could specifically code their app for quads but that would be rare since consumers won't be running quad processors for another 2-3 years.

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What hmurchison said about the multiprocessor support.

 

My concern would be bandwidth with a PCI video card, especially if running two or three displays at the same time as a large number of hi-res audio tracks. Seems like it could bottleneck the PCI bus.

 

Still, the idea of a quad-2GHz Opteron system running Nuendo or Sequoia is pretty droolsome. Or for that matter, a 20-processor IBM blade server, but I haven't heard about any audio folks doing anything that crazy... yet. Probably if you're going to spend that kind of cash, the temptation would be just to go with Pro Tools and have an industry standard.

Stephen Fortner

Principal, Fortner Media

Former Editor in Chief, Keyboard Magazine

Digital Piano Consultant, Piano Buyer Magazine

 

Industry affiliations: Antares, Arturia, Giles Communications, MS Media, Polyverse

 

 

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Originally posted by Doug Osborne:

What DAW software natively supports four processors?

Unlike the early multi-processors, Windows software doesn't need to be written explicitly to support multi-processors. As long as the software is multi-threaded (and most DAW software is), it can benefit from multi-processors.

 

Compute-intensive applications, like DSP plugins, etc., benefit the most. Performance scales up almost linearly with the first few processors. Lots of processors require very sophisticated mobo designs. Your milage may vary.

Casio PX-5S, Korg Kronos 61, Omnisphere 2, Ableton Live, LaunchKey 25, 2M cables
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The board Steve is talking about is an older Tyan server board,all the new ones coming out now have AGP,so wait for the new quad board if your interested.I'm pretty sure the latest Nuendo supports more than 2 procs but I'm not sure,Win 2003 server supports quad procs and is a 64 bit OS directly supporting the Opterons 64 bit instructions(the ones intel has to lease now that the Titanic sunk).There was supposed to be some 64 bit PCI-X video cards(the reason for no AGP in early Tyan Opteron boards) but I haven't looked lately,I guess they didn't do to well.
"A Robot Playing Trumpet Blows"
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Originally posted by Alndlnbot:

I'm pretty sure the latest Nuendo supports more than 2 procs.

I think you're right.
"That's what the internet is for. Slandering others anonymously." - Banky Edwards.
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Windows NT has supported multiple processors since it's initial release in 1993 (it also ran on PowerPC processors even before Macs had them). The restrictions on the number of supported processors is not a technical issue, but rather, a marketing one. This includes XP which is fundamentally just NT with a new window manager.

 

NT's multiple CPU support is called SMP (Symetric Multi Processing) which, among other things, requires all of the CPUs to be exactly the same, and that they share access to the system memory. This is pretty much the way all OSs for microprocessors work including Linux, OS X, OS/2, Windows, Unix, etc.

 

A DAW, or any other application for that matter, does not have to be specifically coded for multiple processors to benefit from their presence. The OS's thread scheduler will run threads on multiple CPUs as they become available. Even a single threaded application will benefit since the OS itself has it's own threads so with SMP you can get true parallel instruction processing.

 

hmurchison is right about the HAL in NT (and most other modern OSs): For the most part, an application can't really access hardware directly. However, in the Win32 API, a developer can assign a processor affinity mask to a thread to request that that thread be executed only on a particular processor. It's only a request though since the OS will do whatever it needs to do to keep things running.

 

Really, the best way for an application to benefit from multiple CPUs is to use carefully designed and implemented multithreaded programming techniques. Doing so is challenging as multithreaded programming adds an entirely different set of issues to the, uh, "mix", especially when there are delicate timing issues as there with audio.

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Originally posted by Doug Osborne:

What DAW software natively supports four processors? In what way would this mb improve DAW performance? Four times more VSTis?

well maybe 3 times as much.

how about a killer daw and have full orchestral gigastudio 3 all in one box. no more seperate gigadaw!

 

and yes PCIx video is almost available.

 

Scott

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