Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

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Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby JonasTheMovie » Wed Jan 06, 2016 4:26 am

Hello, fellow folders!

Being quite new to the F@H community, I am currrently only running my bedroom Mac Mini 2012 i7 at 25% trottle due to sound and temp. It gives 1000ppd, which is 1000 more than ever before.
With a father suffering from Parkinson´s and being a general hardware nerd, without being of the gaming persuasion, I am now contemplating a dedicated folding rig.
So the question to you is, does it make sense to spend the money on high end GPU and save on all other aspects (besides from buying all new instead of second hand)?
I have comprised a shopping list which sums up to 1300 dollars (with VAT included). Components are rather pricey here in Sweden...

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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby toTOW » Wed Jan 06, 2016 10:04 pm

For a dedicated folder, an AMD GPU is definitely not the best choice (unless you're an absolute fan). You'll get far more PPD/W (or PPD/€) with an nVidia GPU (GTX 970, 980 or 980Ti are currently the most popular in FAH, depending on how much you want to spend). And yes, at the moment, the GPUs are the best choice if you're chasing for PPD.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby Nathan_P » Wed Jan 06, 2016 10:56 pm

hi and a few thoughts on your build

You can save on the case, cooler & cpu - for a cpu I would go used, i3 or similar as recent as you can get for less than the 399 in your basket. Cooler - unless you plan on overclocking use a reference heatsink. Case, I go for what ever is cheapest that will still do a reasonable job of allowing air to circulate -my current favourite is a corsair 200.

GPU wise - as toTOW said, go with a Nvidia 970/980 or 980ti - for less than the price of that fury you could get both a 970 and a 960 or pay about 500kr more and get a pair of 970's or 980ti. Power used will be a lot less which I'm sure will be a factor - I can't imagine electricity being cheap in Sweden.

You don't need an SSD, buy the cheapest smallest HDD you can find.

where you need to spend:- GPU, as already stated, PSU, get a decent platinum rated PSU, I use seasonic & corsair but there are other out there - EVGA, superflower etc. Motherboard - get a decent one with a couple of PCIe slots that will overclock well - i.e recommended by the hardware review sites. You may not be overclocking but boards running 24/7 are putting strain on the power supply component on the mobo, overclocked boards have better components so should last longer.

I've run folding rigs for 6 years now - every time I have tried to cut corners on the motherboard or PSU they have failed - necessitating early replacement and additional expense.

Hope this helps
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby mmonnin » Wed Jan 06, 2016 11:56 pm

Even the 950s get around 150k when OCd. The maxwell lineup does much better than AMD per $ and per Watt.

I copy Nathan's comment on good PSUs. Kind of pointless to get a cheap one (usually less efficient any way) just for it to take out your motherboard or something else.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby JonasTheMovie » Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:41 am

Thank you for the answers!

But if I throw in that I want it to be small and silent?
The watercooling of the Fury really appeal to me.
A 970 running full throttle FAH surely must use the fan alot.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby toTOW » Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:51 am

Many third party coolers used on 970/980/980Ti are quite silent. I have a MSI GeForce GTX 980 Gaming 4G and a friend has an EVGA GeForce GTX 980 Superclocked ACX 2.0 which are pretty quiet ... you can find models equipped with 970 or 980Ti with the same coolers (Twin Frozr 5 for MSI and ACX 2.0 for EVGA). I can't tell when my MSI is running, the case fans are more noisy than it is (if my R9 290X is not running, else in this case, the only thing I hear is its blower fan :lol: ).

If you really want to go with AIO WC, you can check out the Gigabyte GeForce GTX 980 Waterforce Gaming which has a system very similar to the one used on Fury X ...
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby JonasTheMovie » Thu Jan 07, 2016 2:04 am

The EVGA GTX 980Ti hybrid looks pretty good, It costs 120 bucks more, but will give more performance and draw less energy I guess. The fan for the memory and dc/dc should be quite silent.
But sadly I don´t seem to be able to save any money on i3 or any other Intel, they seem quite pricey here. AMD seems like the low cost option to go. Which fit with the mobo I picked out.
Even a bit cheaper SSD is maybe overkill for a folder, but 45 dollars is ok to get it dead silent. Can´t even find a cheaper HDD...

So Im just a bit shy of 1400 dollar then.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby Nathan_P » Thu Jan 07, 2016 9:52 am

i3 was only a suggestion, I think AMD do make cheaper chips than the one you picked - but CPU wise you can go used, my old gpu folding box used a 2nd hand E6600 back when I built my rig.

Got to 2nd the comment on quiet gpu's - there is very little noise from a 3rd party cooler, I can't hear my 970 or 960 over the noise of the case fans.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby bruce » Thu Jan 07, 2016 5:05 pm

What he is saying is don't waste any extra money on the CPU. As far as FAH is concerned, almost any CPU is enough to supply data to the GPU.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby k1wi » Thu Jan 07, 2016 5:44 pm

The only reason Fury's require water cooling is because they draw so much more power than most 9xx series NVidia's (although the 980Ti does come close). And as to quiet - you still have a fan on the rad and you're adding a water pump as well.

I use a Sandy Celeron G550 for my GPU rig. Unless you want to fold with more than one GPU (which would need a bigger case) you don't really need more than 2 threads on a dedicated system. A celeron/pentium (second-hand Ivy even) would be easily enough for you needs and you'll also save money in power consumption.

I have to say that the CPU water cooler is massively over-spec for what you're wanting - unless you're wanting watercooling because it looks cool (it can). Coming from someone who started using water coolers long before AIOs were around, you're not dumping >130W or overclocking (where core temps play a role).

I bold this because it's really important - I'd be careful trying to stick two rads into that case. One 240mm Rad fits, but I think you might be lucky to get two 120s, given the additional length required for barbs etc. If you really really want to water cool, grab a 240mm rad and waterblocks for your CPU & GPU and make a custom loop. It'll look and perform better.
Last edited by k1wi on Sat Jan 09, 2016 12:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby JonasTheMovie » Fri Jan 08, 2016 4:26 pm

My plan was to only go for GPU which gives higher efficiency, so its nice to hear I can go really cheap on the CPU.

The watercooler fan of the Fury is still a fan, but it can work at lower rpm, compared to the 980t-i ref fan. The 980ti hybrid adds a watercooler but keeps the onboard fan for dc/dc and memory. The Fury design with HDM and the extra copper pipe cools everything with water. Offcourse an aftermarket block and radiator would be cool, but then maybe with multiple GPUs then.
I saw this sick build on LLT with 2x14core proc, 7 watercooled Fury nano (single slot) with a custom joint water manifold bolted on top of the cards. That was pretty, vey pretty.

What really appeals to me with watercooler is exhausting the air out of the box, bot for GPU and CPU. The CPU-cooler costs about the same as a decent heatpipe solution (which is pretty amazing).
The case can hold both a GPU radiator and a double CPU radiator in the top, so two single one will fit just perfectly from what Ive seen. The GPU rad backwards and the CPU rad upwards.
That would work with both 980ti hybrid and the Fury X, but I still can´t decide which card makes more sense, They seem to draw the same amount of power, almost the same computing power (?) but better FAH-core support with Nvidia? Remember, this rig will never game...

The comment on the case being a bit small has put me on route with the Cooler Master 110 Mini ITX 110 case, obviously with the Fury X. Only seen builds with Fury Nano in this case but I am sure I can cram in the radiators of both CPU and GPU in some way.

Ok, this wasn´t ment to be a comparisment AMD/Nvidia, I needed to know the lower limit of CPU performance for GPU folding.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby JonasTheMovie » Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:40 pm

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Here is the current list. Notice the insanely small case, short PSU, extra low memory banks, but two water radiators to fit and a Fury X, not the Nano. The challenge is what drives me here.
Going to put the GPU control the fan on the outside of frontplate, then stack the CPU radiator and in 90degree angle where the GPU fan normally sits. The GPU gets the fresh air, CPU gets to work with whats left.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby foldy » Fri Jan 08, 2016 7:36 pm

Maybe think about a mainboard that support 2 GPU cards.
So you can add another Fury X for folding later.
For 2 GPUs you need a more powerful NT with up to 1000W.
And it does not fit in CM Elite 110 Case.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby k1wi » Fri Jan 08, 2016 8:25 pm

You must be one for a challenge with that set up - good luck. I've got an old GTX 570 in a Silverstone SG05, which is a little bit smaller, so I'm familiar with the form factor. But even with a SFX psu and no radiators it is less than ideal (in hindsight I would absolutely 100% go with a larger case - micro-ATX with the ability to add a second GPU down the line). In such a small case the small clearances are a lot more of a pain than anticipated.

From the way you've described your design, the 300+W of hot air from the radiators is going to be dumping into the case? I.E: GPU rad -> |Case Wall| -> CPU rad -> {Inside Case} -> PSU -> Outside? I'd really really consider flipping it around so that the hot air is exhausting straight out of the radiators. The CPU rad won't add that much heat to the air passing through to the GPU rad (~15% of the total heat), and at least then you'll get fresh air passing over the motherboard from the side vents...

I suspect you're going to have a challenge mounting the Fury X with the CPU radiator, as the GPU might try to encroach the rad's tubing, but maybe you'll get away with it. In any event, I'm interested to see how the build goes.
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Re: Dedicated rig High end GPU Low end CPU?

Postby JonasTheMovie » Fri Jan 08, 2016 8:41 pm

Adding a second GPU later is not something I am considering, I would rather fit two at once then. Singe GPU, mITX and miniscule box is the recipie.

Exhausting the GPU in the front is a good practise since the case does not hold a dust filter from what I can see. If the front would of had a filter, I would surely use it.
Dumping the hot air into the box does warm the mobo and the components, but CPU and GPU has already been cooled, so is it really a problem then, with SSD and all?

Considering the CPU wont do any heavy lifting I can use the stock cooler if I exhaust in the front. That would save space and money. But with space it is not the CPU water cooling that is the problem, but the routing of the
I am pretty sure the case will need some cutting to take the hoses going out of the Fury, the Asatech hoses can take more bending than the supplied CoolerMaster counterparts, Ive read.
Modifying is actually something that makes this more fun, anyone can throw stuff into a big box...

Dumping the CPU cooler and buying this mark down Fury I actually can go below 10000kr. That is a nice limit.
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