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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 12:31 PM - Thread Starter
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I was browsing through some of my old archived pictures from back in 2004, and I came across a dual CPU machine crammed into a shuttle sized computer. It was the IWill ZMAXdp and IWill ZMAXd2. Does anyone remember this?

So, that leads me to wonder.. were there ever any dual CPU small form-factor systems like this ever produced afterwards, because I can't recall any. Even with the multi-core processors today, like the Avoton 8-core on a single mini-ITX board, it seems like it could be workable to make a multi-CPU system in a small form factor like this once again. I remember I wanted one really bad, but I was only a teenager at the time, so money was tight with mowing lawns. biggrin.gif

Review of the ZMAXdp: http://hexus.net/tech/reviews/systems/876-world-exclusive-preview-iwills-zmaxdp/

ZMAXd2 teaser: http://hexus.net/tech/news/systems/1206-computex-2005-world-exclusive-pictures-concrete-info-iwills-upcoming-zmaxd2/



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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 12:38 PM
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it was made for the same reason Athlon 64 FX was sold in packages of two and had two socket boards, amd wanted a more cores but it was not feasible for them to put it in single package at the time so they went dual core dual socket design
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 01:05 PM
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If your mITX case is wide enough, you can house two CPUs. G34 example and LGA-1366 example. Any other board starting with "H8DGT" or "X8DTT" should have a similar form factor as well; there are a number of variants with some special features. I think it's possible to stick one of these in a Cooler Master HAF Stacker. I recommend the 915F over the 915R. thumb.gif


Now, as for why we don't have this today. Well, CPUs have gotten big. Intel's old server socket used to be LGA-771. That was their first land grid array socket, succeeding the pin grid array mPGA-478. Then it was replaced with LGA-1366, adding more cores and memory channels, forcing more pins for more I/O. Then that was replaced with LGA-2011, with still more cores and memory channels. And now that's being replaced with LGA-3467! They're getting massive. AMD's socket 939 and variants (socket 940 for workstations/servers, and then everything from AM2 to AM3+) is reasonably small, but their current CPUs on that socket run extremely hot. A full Vishera die has a 95W TDP at best. Stick two of them on one board. Now you need VRMs to power 190W of CPU minimum, and two sockets take up a bit of space regardless of board. But that neglects the 1944-pin socket G34 (thankfully a land grid array like Intel, so the pins are a bit closer together) entirely with its dual-die chips, which would be even worse for any motherboard.

Technically, using a smaller socket like C32 or LGA-1366, it would be possible to have a DTX dual-socket motherboard (in other words, ATX with 2 PCIe slots instead of 7) but there isn't really a market for it. Server boards are going to go with more expansion slots for safety rather than less to save a few rack units.

Additional memory channels don't help. Each CPU needs them. ASRock cheated with their mITX X99 board by forcing it to be dual-channel. But most of the time the minimum number of memory slots is the number of channels the CPU has. For LGA-771, that's two. Easy enough to work with. For LGA-1366, that's three. A bit more difficult but still feasible. LGA-2011, that's four. Technically possible, but every mITX board with that many slots has a tiny SoC, not a massive CPU socket plus chipset plus VRMs! And for LGA-3467, six. That's just silly. For AMD, they have two channels per die, meaning the dual-die G34 CPUs are technically quad-channel. They just use two memory controllers, similar to some of Intel's biggest 15-core and 18-core dies.


And finally, there just haven't been dual-socket enthusiast boards recently because there is no real point. The Xeons needed for this, the E5-2600 series and better, are very expensive compared to the E5-1600 equivalents. Like, a 6C/12T Haswell-EP (5930K for workstations) chip costs ~$600 if it's for a 1P system and $1500 for a 2P system. That's out of budget for, well, everybody. A single 12C/24T Xeon would I think be cheaper (e.g. the E5-1686 v3, but I can't find a price for it).

To contrast the current Xeons, 5600 series (dual-socket Westmere-EP) was much cheaper, so EVGA for example could launch the SR-2 board. Since all multi-socket Xeons have locked multipliers (a few single-socket Xeons don't, primarily the E5-1600 series) and it's nearly impossible to overclock Sandy Bridge or newer via bclk, there's no real point making a dual-socket overclocking board either. You'll maybe get 100MHz more. Know what else can get that? The next tier of Xeons!


There's also AMD who I haven't really mentioned but, well, they just don't have a presence in the server market. Single-digit percentage, maybe. I think even IBM and PowerPC beats them. I'm not aware of them ever making dual-socket boards for enthusiasts outside of one time. The exception was when they pushed that in response to Intel releasing the Core2Quad (not even a true quad-core; it used two dies!) using the OG FX CPUs.

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 01:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CynicalUnicorn View Post

If your mITX case is wide enough, you can house two CPUs. G34 example and LGA-1366 example. Any other board starting with "H8DGT" or "X8DTT" should have a similar form factor as well; there are a number of variants with some special features. I think it's possible to stick one of these in a Cooler Master HAF Stacker. I recommend the 915F over the 915R. thumb.gif


Now, as for why we don't have this today. Well, CPUs have gotten big. Intel's old server socket used to be LGA-771. That was their first land grid array socket, succeeding the pin grid array mPGA-478. Then it was replaced with LGA-1366, adding more cores and memory channels, forcing more pins for more I/O. Then that was replaced with LGA-2011, with still more cores and memory channels. And now that's being replaced with LGA-3467! They're getting massive. AMD's socket 939 and variants (socket 940 for workstations/servers, and then everything from AM2 to AM3+) is reasonably small, but their current CPUs on that socket run extremely hot. A full Vishera die has a 95W TDP at best. Stick two of them on one board. Now you need VRMs to power 190W of CPU minimum, and two sockets take up a bit of space regardless of board. But that neglects the 1944-pin socket G34 (thankfully a land grid array like Intel, so the pins are a bit closer together) entirely with its dual-die chips, which would be even worse for any motherboard.

Technically, using a smaller socket like C32 or LGA-1366, it would be possible to have a DTX dual-socket motherboard (in other words, ATX with 2 PCIe slots instead of 7) but there isn't really a market for it. Server boards are going to go with more expansion slots for safety rather than less to save a few rack units.

Additional memory channels don't help. Each CPU needs them. ASRock cheated with their mITX X99 board by forcing it to be dual-channel. But most of the time the minimum number of memory slots is the number of channels the CPU has. For LGA-771, that's two. Easy enough to work with. For LGA-1366, that's three. A bit more difficult but still feasible. LGA-2011, that's four. Technically possible, but every mITX board with that many slots has a tiny SoC, not a massive CPU socket plus chipset plus VRMs! And for LGA-3467, six. That's just silly. For AMD, they have two channels per die, meaning the dual-die G34 CPUs are technically quad-channel. They just use two memory controllers, similar to some of Intel's biggest 15-core and 18-core dies.


And finally, there just haven't been dual-socket enthusiast boards recently because there is no real point. The Xeons needed for this, the E5-2600 series and better, are very expensive compared to the E5-1600 equivalents. Like, a 6C/12T Haswell-EP (5930K for workstations) chip costs ~$600 if it's for a 1P system and $1500 for a 2P system. That's out of budget for, well, everybody. A single 12C/24T Xeon would I think be cheaper (e.g. the E5-1686 v3, but I can't find a price for it).

To contrast the current Xeons, 5600 series (dual-socket Westmere-EP) was much cheaper, so EVGA for example could launch the SR-2 board. Since all multi-socket Xeons have locked multipliers (a few single-socket Xeons don't, primarily the E5-1600 series) and it's nearly impossible to overclock Sandy Bridge or newer via bclk, there's no real point making a dual-socket overclocking board either. You'll maybe get 100MHz more. Know what else can get that? The next tier of Xeons!


There's also AMD who I haven't really mentioned but, well, they just don't have a presence in the server market. Single-digit percentage, maybe. I think even IBM and PowerPC beats them. I'm not aware of them ever making dual-socket boards for enthusiasts outside of one time. The exception was when they pushed that in response to Intel releasing the Core2Quad (not even a true quad-core; it used two dies!) using the OG FX CPUs.


There's actually no 1P Xeon over 8 cores that consumers can buy. Those 10/12/14C SKUs you see are custom.

It's a shame, because the E5-1xxx CPUs are overclockable smile.gif

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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 01:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CynicalUnicorn View Post

If your mITX case is wide enough, you can house two CPUs. G34 example and LGA-1366 example. Any other board starting with "H8DGT" or "X8DTT" should have a similar form factor as well; there are a number of variants with some special features. I think it's possible to stick one of these in a Cooler Master HAF Stacker. I recommend the 915F over the 915R. thumb.gif


Now, as for why we don't have this today. Well, CPUs have gotten big. Intel's old server socket used to be LGA-771. That was their first land grid array socket, succeeding the pin grid array mPGA-478. Then it was replaced with LGA-1366, adding more cores and memory channels, forcing more pins for more I/O. Then that was replaced with LGA-2011, with still more cores and memory channels. And now that's being replaced with LGA-3467! They're getting massive. AMD's socket 939 and variants (socket 940 for workstations/servers, and then everything from AM2 to AM3+) is reasonably small, but their current CPUs on that socket run extremely hot. A full Vishera die has a 95W TDP at best. Stick two of them on one board. Now you need VRMs to power 190W of CPU minimum, and two sockets take up a bit of space regardless of board. But that neglects the 1944-pin socket G34 (thankfully a land grid array like Intel, so the pins are a bit closer together) entirely with its dual-die chips, which would be even worse for any motherboard.

Technically, using a smaller socket like C32 or LGA-1366, it would be possible to have a DTX dual-socket motherboard (in other words, ATX with 2 PCIe slots instead of 7) but there isn't really a market for it. Server boards are going to go with more expansion slots for safety rather than less to save a few rack units.

Additional memory channels don't help. Each CPU needs them. ASRock cheated with their mITX X99 board by forcing it to be dual-channel. But most of the time the minimum number of memory slots is the number of channels the CPU has. For LGA-771, that's two. Easy enough to work with. For LGA-1366, that's three. A bit more difficult but still feasible. LGA-2011, that's four. Technically possible, but every mITX board with that many slots has a tiny SoC, not a massive CPU socket plus chipset plus VRMs! And for LGA-3467, six. That's just silly. For AMD, they have two channels per die, meaning the dual-die G34 CPUs are technically quad-channel. They just use two memory controllers, similar to some of Intel's biggest 15-core and 18-core dies.


And finally, there just haven't been dual-socket enthusiast boards recently because there is no real point. The Xeons needed for this, the E5-2600 series and better, are very expensive compared to the E5-1600 equivalents. Like, a 6C/12T Haswell-EP (5930K for workstations) chip costs ~$600 if it's for a 1P system and $1500 for a 2P system. That's out of budget for, well, everybody. A single 12C/24T Xeon would I think be cheaper (e.g. the E5-1686 v3, but I can't find a price for it).

To contrast the current Xeons, 5600 series (dual-socket Westmere-EP) was much cheaper, so EVGA for example could launch the SR-2 board. Since all multi-socket Xeons have locked multipliers (a few single-socket Xeons don't, primarily the E5-1600 series) and it's nearly impossible to overclock Sandy Bridge or newer via bclk, there's no real point making a dual-socket overclocking board either. You'll maybe get 100MHz more. Know what else can get that? The next tier of Xeons!


There's also AMD who I haven't really mentioned but, well, they just don't have a presence in the server market. Single-digit percentage, maybe. I think even IBM and PowerPC beats them. I'm not aware of them ever making dual-socket boards for enthusiasts outside of one time. The exception was when they pushed that in response to Intel releasing the Core2Quad (not even a true quad-core; it used two dies!) using the OG FX CPUs.

2011 boards have the EVGA SR-X (an often forgotten and uber rare board). But that's crazy well explained. +rep.

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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by brucethemoose View Post

There's actually no 1P Xeon over 8 cores that consumers can buy. Those 10/12/14C SKUs you see are custom.

It's a shame, because the E5-1xxx CPUs are overclockable smile.gif

That's what I feared. I'm not sure how "custom" that is though. Intel only makes three dies for Haswell-EP - 8, 12, and 18 cores IIRC - and every single CPU on LGA-2011-3 is based on one of those.

Yup! And if you have an existing X79 system you don't want to replace, apparently the E5-1680 v2 (8C/16T, Ivy Bridge-EP) is unlocked and is close enough to a 5960X for most purposes. It has no reason to be unlocked is the thing. The i7s only have up to six cores, meaning the small 6-core die is used, and no die larger than that has a need for an unlocked multiplier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duality92 View Post

2011 boards have the EVGA SR-X (an often forgotten and uber rare board). But that's crazy well explained. +rep.

I thought I mentioned that. But it's okay. I didn't really proofread. tongue.gifThis one, right?

Quote: Originally Posted by TheBadBull View Post
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 01:50 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by CynicalUnicorn View Post

If your mITX case is wide enough, you can house two CPUs. G34 example and LGA-1366 example. Any other board starting with "H8DGT" or "X8DTT" should have a similar form factor as well; there are a number of variants with some special features. I think it's possible to stick one of these in a Cooler Master HAF Stacker. I recommend the 915F over the 915R. thumb.gif
Thanks for that, I had seen those server boards, but never thought of throwing it in a HAF Stacker. biggrin.gif
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-08-2015, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by CynicalUnicorn View Post

That's what I feared. I'm not sure how "custom" that is though. Intel only makes three dies for Haswell-EP - 8, 12, and 18 cores IIRC - and every single CPU on LGA-2011-3 is based on one of those.

Yup! And if you have an existing X79 system you don't want to replace, apparently the E5-1680 v2 (8C/16T, Ivy Bridge-EP) is unlocked and is close enough to a 5960X for most purposes. It has no reason to be unlocked is the thing. The i7s only have up to six cores, meaning the small 6-core die is used, and no die larger than that has a need for an unlocked multiplier.
I thought I mentioned that. But it's okay. I didn't really proofread. tongue.gifThis one, right?

That's the SR-2 (LGA 1366), not the SR-X (LGA 2011)

SR2


SRX

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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-09-2015, 02:41 AM
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that 1366 dual socket from super micro is essentially a blade server board still i'd love to get my hands on one.

dual 1366 hex cores + a dual GPU card is alot of performance in an ITX form factor and it should be able to fit in a CM HAF stacker 915

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-09-2015, 04:44 AM
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that 1366 dual socket from super micro is essentially a blade server board still i'd love to get my hands on one.

dual 1366 hex cores + a dual GPU card is alot of performance in an ITX form factor and it should be able to fit in a CM HAF stacker 915

Some dual GPU cards can be single slot, so essentially, you could put 12c/24t, quad xfire or sli in a haf stacker pedestal! wink.gif

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