Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU folding?

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Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU folding?

Postby dreamscape » Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:14 pm

Hi all

I'm building a 100% dedicated folding@home rig... So far i have a media center case with x3 120mm fans, a AMD 6850 PCI-E card and a 600 watt PSU. Next thing i need is motherboard and cpu... I want a very low power cpu as i don't intend to fold on the CPU (is it even worth it anymore?). I was looking at a 478 based board on ebay and intended to use this CPU: http://ark.intel.com/products/27354/Mob ... 00-MHz-FSB

My question is will a 478 Pentium 4 1.6ghz be ok running GPU folding? will it bottleneck the card at all?
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Re: Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU foldin

Postby P5-133XL » Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:30 pm

As far as I can tell as long as you have at least one CPU core per GPU, regardless of the capability of the CPU, your GPU folding will be good to go.
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Re: Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU foldin

Postby JimboPalmer » Tue Mar 18, 2014 10:06 pm

You may find that a 'free' P4 uses so much electrical power that it is cheaper to buy a modern low power CPU and motherboard, than pay for the electricity to power a P4.
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Re: Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU foldin

Postby bruce » Tue Mar 18, 2014 10:39 pm

dreamscape wrote:...I want a very low power cpu as i don't intend to fold on the CPU (is it even worth it anymore?)....

Some people do consider CPU folding beneath their dignity. Others are anxious to contribute and are very excited about the new NaCl client. It happens to be quite similar to running just a CPU slot (V7) or running the V6 uniprocessor or V6 SMP client except it runs without a client install. Here on foldingforum.org, we support both types.

Do not make the false assumption that one persons opinion matches another person's opinion.

You might look for a motherboard with an Atom processor. It's very low power and most have hyperthreading so it can support two GPUs if you can find a MB with enough slots.
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Re: Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU foldin

Postby jrweiss » Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:46 am

My low-power rig is an i7-3770S on a MSI Z77A-GD65 board. The CPU alone will Fold ~20K PPD. The TDP of that CPU is 65W, and it will run all day at 3.5 GHz, burning 108W total. The Lian-Li PC-K7B case also has 2x120mm Intake + 1x120mm Exhaust. That allows a passively cooled Kingwin Stryker 500 PSU and Sapphire Ultimate HD 7750 GPU with no other fans other than the CPU cooler (Noctua NH-D14 with ULN Adapters installed). It would make for a great HTPC rig as well.

You can find a lower-cost MoBo that will work just fine. You may find a lower-cost AMD CPU/MoBo combination, but I haven't kept track of their TDPs. There is also an i7-4770S with the same 65W TDP. The Intel dual-core CPUs have lower TDPs, but obviously lower performance...
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Re: Creating another folding box, Minimum CPU for GPU foldin

Postby dreamscape » Wed Mar 19, 2014 10:08 am

Hi all thanks for the feedback...

I found a dirt cheap motherboard last night (£10 posted) and its on the level with Pentium 4's performance wise BUT... It has a laptop CPU socket so you can use Pentium M CPU's.

http://static.trustedreviews.com/94/7de ... 1952-4.jpg

I've ordered a CPU for £1 which uses 21 watts. There are 10 and 5 watt Pentium M's you can buy too but I'm struggling to find one. Still 21 watts is still plenty low enough for this. Also this could double up as a media center PC or server due to its dual gigabit ports... there's many many uses for this machine.

Good times! I will report back with my progress.
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