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  #1  
Old 10-31-2007, 01:32 PM
poluxproject poluxproject is offline
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Question CPU recomendation Duo or Quad?

I am building a new headless rig to be used with the new vaporware hd extender and would appreciate suggestions.
What should perform better a Core2duo 6850 3ghz or a Core2Quad 6600 2.4ghz, I intend to have it as a headless server Windows 2003 R2 64 bit OS, 1 pvr150, 1 or 2 hvr1800, and 1 Skywalker (Mytheatre or DVbDream Locally installed capturing h.264 (renderless, recording only)) Also I intend to run SA and other low CPU chores For home automation, active directory and file services.
My initial inclination is to get the lower speed quad core, but would appreciate sugestions.
Best
Polux
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  #2  
Old 10-31-2007, 01:47 PM
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With normal recording/commercial detecting you'll barely tax the CPU in Intel's latest crop of processors. Unless you plan on doing some much more strenuous stuff like compressing recordings you should be fine with the dual-core. That being said, I have the Q6600 in my server and I love it because I compress 2-3 hours of TV per day
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  #3  
Old 10-31-2007, 02:13 PM
poluxproject poluxproject is offline
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Quad it is then

Quote:
Originally Posted by evilpenguin View Post
With normal recording/commercial detecting you'll barely tax the CPU in Intel's latest crop of processors. Unless you plan on doing some much more strenuous stuff like compressing recordings you should be fine with the dual-core. That being said, I have the Q6600 in my server and I love it because I compress 2-3 hours of TV per day
Quad it is then; the only problem I have now is... I know that price will drop the minute that I order it. Thank you evilpenguin; Are you the only one around here whose avatar is not a cat?
Polux
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Old 10-31-2007, 03:10 PM
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  #5  
Old 10-31-2007, 03:47 PM
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I'd agree, the quad will be better as a server (overkill probably), it can do more simultaneous tasks without bogging down. If you wanted max performance from a specific application then the faster dual core would be the better bet.
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  #6  
Old 10-31-2007, 04:41 PM
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I agree too, get the quad, 2.4Ghz is plenty of horsepower. My Core2Duo always has plenty of oomph, and usually disk throughput is my limiting factor, especially when recording 3 HD streams concurrently and trying to detect commercials at the same time.

-Chris
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  #7  
Old 10-31-2007, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilpenguin View Post
With normal recording/commercial detecting you'll barely tax the CPU in Intel's latest crop of processors. Unless you plan on doing some much more strenuous stuff like compressing recordings you should be fine with the dual-core. That being said, I have the Q6600 in my server and I love it because I compress 2-3 hours of TV per day
You only compress 2-3 hours. I thought you were more serious than that. I compress at least 12 hours a day.
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  #8  
Old 10-31-2007, 05:10 PM
pschweig pschweig is offline
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Will placeshifter perform better with a quad core? I have a crappy 256kb upload - would placeshifter detect a faster processor and employ better compression to squeeze the most out of my limited bandwidth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisc16
and usually disk throughput is my limiting factor, especially when recording 3 HD streams concurrently and trying to detect commercials at the same time.
Can 1 disk cope with 3 HD streams or have you got raid/multiple recording disks?
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  #9  
Old 10-31-2007, 08:54 PM
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I was also trying to make the decision between the Intel E6850 dual core and the QX6700 quad core. However, the QX6700 price did not drop on July 22nd.

The Q6700 was introduced around July 22nd. The problem with the Q6700 is there are two versions, the G0 and the B0. The G0 overclocks better and runs cooler than the B0. Even if you don't intend to overclock now, you probably should try to purchase a G0 in case you decide to overclock in the future. There are some places where you can buy Q6700 G0 CPU, like www.tankguys.com. But other places like NewEgg refuse to tell you if you are sold a G0 or B0. If you get a B0, you have to go through the hassle of returning it. The www.overclockers.net web site has a lot more information about the differences between the Q6700 B0 and G0 CPUs. The Q6700 has a 1066 meg FSB.

I selected the E6850 because the dual core speed is 3.00 gig and it has a 1333 meg FSB without overclocking. The E6850 is drastically faster than my old Althlon XP+ 2800 system. The E6850 transcodes Mpeg2 into high quality Xvid AVIs using the Roxy99 two pass processes while playing back AVI files into an MVP without stuttering. It takes 40 - 50 minutes to transcode one hour of Mpeg2 into AVI.

At the time I bought my new system, a 3.00 gig quad core was priced at $1333, and the E6850 dual core was $329. However, now the QX6850 has come down to about $1000 now and the E6850 dropped to about $280.

If you choose to overclock, the E6850 will overclock up to about 4.0 gig and the Q6700 will overclock to about 3.4 gigs. But if you overclock, you may have to invest in either liquid cooling ($200 - $300) or the pricey phase cooling ($600 - $800).

I don't know how much benefit you will gain with the two additional cores in the quad, verses the lower processing speed and FSB. You probably will be satisfied with either choice, but if you get the Q6700, but sure it is a G0.


Dave
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Last edited by davephan; 10-31-2007 at 11:18 PM. Reason: Typo, the G0 is preferred over the B0
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  #10  
Old 10-31-2007, 09:27 PM
reggie14 reggie14 is offline
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I not sure you'd get much benefit out of a quad core. Sage doesn't break CPU intensive tasks into several threads, so if you're compressing one file its only going to use one core. So, if you figure you'd at most be compressing one file and doing commercial detection on another, it seems a dual core would be enough. The other tasks shouldn't be eating enough cycles to be noticed.

What I don't know is if Sage will convert two or more files at once using different cores. On my computer Sage will only convert one file at a time, but I have a single core processor. Will commercial skip work on multiple files at once? If so, then a quad core would have some advantages.

One thing I'd be a little worried about is whether a 2.4 GHz Core 2 is fast enough to transcode HD to an MVP on high quality. I would guess it is, but it sounds like that is the most processor-intensive task in Sage right now (that has to be done in real-time, at least).
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  #11  
Old 10-31-2007, 09:49 PM
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I had to make that same decision as well - and I also landed on the E6850. I've been extremely happy with it's performance - in fact I can honestly say I've never had experience with a faster computer. It is blazingly fast, and more than capable for anything Sage has up it's sleeve right now.

I recorded 6 shows (3 HD, 3 SD), watched an HD show (transcoded high quality) on an MVP and watched another recorded HD show on another TV simultaneously to see how it would handle it, and it sat at about 40% CPU. 30% of that was the transcoder.

btl.
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  #12  
Old 11-01-2007, 12:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reggie14 View Post
I not sure you'd get much benefit out of a quad core. Sage doesn't break CPU intensive tasks into several threads, so if you're compressing one file its only going to use one core. So, if you figure you'd at most be compressing one file and doing commercial detection on another, it seems a dual core would be enough. The other tasks shouldn't be eating enough cycles to be noticed.
Not true depending on how you encode. I'm not sure about Sage's compile of ffmpeg, but mencoder and handbrake (which I use) have versions of the common codecs that can take advantage of multiple cores. I'm getting almost 60 fps on the 2nd pass using x264
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  #13  
Old 11-01-2007, 05:36 AM
reggie14 reggie14 is offline
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I was only referring to the built-in conversion utility in Sage, which I'm pretty sure is single-threaded. I could be wrong, since my server processor has a single core. I sort of assumed that poluxproject would be using the built-in utility, but certainly other programs would benefit from multiple cores.
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  #14  
Old 11-01-2007, 05:59 AM
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I have the E6600 2.4 Ghz. Recorded 2 HD, 4 SD, 2 MVPs transcoding HD, 4 instances of comskip all at once without and issue. Never checked the meter but if you want, I can.
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  #15  
Old 11-01-2007, 06:15 AM
dflachbart dflachbart is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davephan View Post
At the time I bought my new system, a 3.00 gig quad core was priced at $1333, and the E6850 dual core was $329. However, now the QX6850 has come down to about $1000 now and the E6850 dropped to about $280.

Sure, with those price differences I wouldn't recommend the Quad either. But if you are fine with a 2.4 Ghz CPU, the Q6600 ($279 at newegg) is a no-brainer compared to the dual cores.

Dirk
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  #16  
Old 11-01-2007, 06:49 AM
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I could be wrong but I would think that each process in the Task Manager would be assigned a core at the time it is executed based upon core loads. If that is true, the transcoder would pick as seperate core for each MVP if needed. Same with comskip, etc.
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  #17  
Old 11-01-2007, 11:16 AM
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I agree with all the people suggesting a Quad - wishing I had gone with one on my recent re-build.

That said - if you can hold out a little longer, Intel is supposed to be releasing some new quad-core parts that should drive prices even lower.
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  #18  
Old 11-01-2007, 11:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poluxproject View Post
I am building a new headless rig to be used with the new vaporware hd extender and would appreciate suggestions.
What should perform better a Core2duo 6850 3ghz or a Core2Quad 6600 2.4ghz...
Polux
The Q6600 2.4ghz can be easily overclocked to 3ghz. I have a Q6600, though not used for my server, and would recommend it also. At the price, i think its a better bargain than the C2D.

Recording shows is not taxing on the CPU, but transcoding to MVPs, processing comskip, video conversions, etc are VERY taxing on the CPU. So until you can offload those tasks elsewhere or have no need for those tasks, you need the fastest CPU you can afford.
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  #19  
Old 11-01-2007, 12:21 PM
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I found this on techbargains a few days ago...

http://www.techbargains.com/tellafriend2.cfm/102468

You lose a little clock speed, but you still get 4 cores for a good price.

(Although I still think the Q6600 is the in the sweet spot for price to performance)

Last edited by evilpenguin; 11-01-2007 at 12:25 PM.
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  #20  
Old 11-01-2007, 09:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davephan View Post
The problem with the Q6700 is there are two versions, the G0 and the B0. The G0 overclocks better and runs cooler than the B0.

Dave
Correction for my previous post.

The two CPU stepping versions are G0 and B3 (not B0).

The Q6700 (2.66 gig) comes in G0 stepping. One of the advantages of the Q6700 is you won't get stuck with a B3 unit. However, the Q6700 2.66 gig CPU costs about $540.

The Q6600 2.4 gig comes in either G0 or B3 stepping. G0 is more desireable than B3, since it overclocks better and runs cooler. The thermal design power of the G0 is 90 watts and the B3 is 105 watts. The Q6600 can be identified with the product code. The G0 ends with "SLACR" and the B3 ends with "SL9UM". I read posts stating that Newegg refused to tell you if they will be ship a G0 or B3.

I was considering buying the QX6700, Q6700, Q6600, and the E6850 several months ago. I sent an e-mail to Newegg to confirm that they actually refuse to tell you which Q6600 (G0 or B3) they will ship. They gave me a story that it was against their policy to specifically sell you a Q6600 G0. So, if you want to buy a Q6600 G0, you should consider ordering it from www.tankguys.com, where you can specifically order a Q6600 G0 CPU. I haven't ordered anything yet from TankGuys, but I haven't heard anything bad about them.

I ended up ordering my E6850 system from Newegg. The Q6600 G0 is about the same price as the E6850. The Q6600 G0 price is about $20 higher at Tankguys than Newegg, but at least you know for sure you will be receiving the Q6600 G0.

Dave
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