C300 – System Set-Up and Software Used

Our array of “in house” test systems has now been fully completed as over the forth coming months, many exciting things will be happening here that will have you aghast with awe.  Both Supermicro and Intel certainly pulled out the stops with these excellent parts which in turn means we can now demonstrate with the newer peripherals coming online the best possible results.  This in turn will demonstrate to you the end user just what to fully expect when you purchase systems of the like we have here in situ.

With the supplied parts on show today these main parts now form part of our “mainstay in house” test system supplied courteously by Intel, Supermicro, Crucial Memory, NVIDIA and Akasa; which could be found in most high-end studios and enthusiast workstation scenarios.   This is a very reliable and sound workstation platform which has plenty of scope for upgrading, which we have voiced on many occasion. 


Test  System


Supermicro X8DAi (Rev 2 Mainboard) with latest Bios


2 X 3.33GHz Intel® Xeon® X5680 Nehalem EP®, 12MB Shared Cache, 6.4GB/s QPI

HSF Coolers

2 X Noctua NH-U9DX 1366


6 X 2GB Crucial DDR3 (12GB Total) 1333MHz
Unbuffered ECC DIMMS  Memory Modules (3 Modules per CPU)

Graphic Card

Nvidia Quadro® FX4800

Hard Drive

256GB Crucial C300 RealSSD connected  to ASUS U3S6 PCI-E Card

6 GB/s PCI Controller

ASUS U3S6 in Secondary X16 PCI-E Slot with latest WHQL Drivers


Akasa Freedom 1000Watt

Hardware Suppliers for the Review

Intel EU for the supply of the 3.33GHz Intel® Xeon® X5680 Nehalem EP® CPU’s

Supermicro for the supply of the X8DAi Rev 2 Mainboard shown within the Test System
Crucial Memory  for the C300 RealSSD and the DDR3 1333MHz Unbuffered ECC Memory, thank you for pulling out the stops here.
NVIDIA for the supply of the Quadro® FX4800 professional graphics card.  
Noctua for the supply of the Heatsink Fans critical to the high end Xeon systems

With the support and help of all the companies involved.   It gives you the reader a choice on upgrade paths that many of you look for here with the performance ratio’s the system has to provide and notwithstanding the professional graphic cards from NVIDIA. 

Systems Integrators, OEM’s and VAR’s should contact all companies directly for pricing and availability of all components.   Members of the public should contact their respective suppliers requesting the parts directly.

Benchmarks and Software Used 64-bit Mode

Microsoft Windows XP Professional 64-bit SP2
Crystal Mark Drive Benchmark
Everest Ultimate (Latest Build)
Sandra 2010
PCMark 2005 Advanced Hard Disc Test (Latest build and fixes)
Cinebench 10 64-Bit
Cinebench 11.5 64-bit (New)
POVRAY Version 3.7 beta 3.7a
Bentley MicroStation Benchmark
SPECapc for SolidWorks 2007™
SPECviewperf® 10.0 64-bit.   Tests ran at 1280 X 1024 Resolution

Each set of tests has been applied on the clean system hard drives shown above to ensure that no residue drivers were left installed with all updates/patches applied.   A test/render has been completed many times over different periods of the system uptime.   Whilst maintaining the fair play rules of SPEC®  HyperThreading and Turbo Boost have been enabled, with the memory being left in its default status of Auto.   Tests have been conducted at 1280 X 1024 @ 60Hz in 32 bit colour.   Results that have been shown within this article are from the application/benchmarks first run in accordance with the SPECviewperf® and SPECapc™ fair play rules.  Not an average of 3 runs as some seem prudent to think that this is correct.

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