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DonMgt December 20, 2009 03:26

i7-975 versus Xeon W5590
We plan to do some pretty intensive CFD work in the next few months. Currently, we use an Intel dual core two processor machine. We just bought an i7-975 machine for a different application so we can benchmark it against our current system, but even this machine will not be as fast as we would like. The [8-Way] Six-Core AMD Opteron 8435 looks like the speed increase that we would like but the Fluent license of paying for every core/processor makes some of the AMD processors look really expensive to me. We may just lease CFD/processor time from our local University but Id rather put the money into buying hardware we keep if I can. So, after that long introduction;
Id like to know if someone has put the Intel Xeon W5590 against an i7-975 in Fluent for runs that take several hours. I cant find benchmarks on the W5590 that also show the i7-975 to get a good feel for how much faster it should be. We will be trying overclocking to squeeze out the top performance we can.
Id also like to know if anyone has a feel for what impact using 1333 RAM instead of 1066 RAM will be?

Michiel February 9, 2010 06:29

According to this benchmark overview:

... It doesn't make a big difference.

If you want to overclock your CPU, you can get good results with a Intel W3540 according to this overview:

hvem10 February 12, 2010 14:45

[QUOTE=Michiel;245458]According to this benchmark overview:

... It doesn't make a big difference.

A very important issue, which is not just related to the speed of a single node, is how well they parallise. The i7 might be comparable when using up to 2 or 3 nodes (of the 4) but I would like to know the performance between the i7 and w5590 when running CFD in parallel and using all 4 nodes. I am not sure, but guess the w5590 will out perform the i7

DonMgt February 13, 2010 19:59

We decided to buy a dual processor W5590 machine for the CFD work we are doing. We just got it in and our initial assessments show it's pretty much what we expected from the benchmarks. We also have a i7-975 machine used for another application. We have one task that uses all four cores pretty evenly so on the 975, in a CFD application I'd expect about the same performance.

I'm curious if anyone has some real world comparisons between the machine we bought dual processor W5590, and the "typical" multi-processor "super computers" being used by some of the universities selling CFD time. I haven't get very crisp answers on what type of processors they are using so it's been difficult to estimate cost of doing this work inhouse with our own machine our outsourcing it.

hvem10 February 14, 2010 12:03

There is a comparison on

and there is the scaling for the Core I7 not very good.
For four threads, Core i7 920@3.55G is slower than Q6600@2.4G!
The scaling of Xeon E5410 is the best.

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