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Old Apr 6, 2009, 10:19 AM   #1
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Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Read The Review Here
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Today we look at Intel's new highest specification W5580 processors running on the new S5520SC motherboard. Just how smoking fast is this platform and are we about to break a bunch of records in our testing today?
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 10:39 AM   #2
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Maaassive review. Good job,

Even though I didn't understand half of it, it was still a very enjoyable read. The system building part was really nice.

btw, how do I wish I could also ring up some manufacturers and let them send their latest crazy hardware to me. :O
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 10:41 AM   #3
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Yeh I didnt really understand half of it either, but what I did understand was awesome. that was a hell of a review Zardon, very impressed.

Killer processors, wish they didn't cost more than my car though !
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 10:45 AM   #4
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

What incredible hardware, really stunned to see Intel getting so much clock per clock performance. Interesting to read that Skulltrail needed to be clocked to 4ghz to get the same performance in cinebench, thats 800mhz per core to match the throughput.

I would love to see these cpus in a motherboard capable of ordinary style overclocking because while I appreciate the turbo mode system in the professional industry I would love to see what these can produce at 4ghz per CPU.

That said, great job Z, as much information as any sane person could ask for.
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 11:17 AM   #5
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

wonderful performance from those processors. cost quite a bit of money mind you !
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 11:57 AM   #6
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Very Nice Z, is this what caused the blackout across the UK last week?
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 12:08 PM   #7
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Well you get what you pay for as they say. Great review Allan and I would recommend to anyone to set aside even 10 or 15 minutes and give this one a good read through ... I did
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 12:57 PM   #8
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

"Fantastical" that's all I could come up with to describe the system absolutely "Fantastical"
Now if i only had the deep pockets to actually get one
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 01:52 PM   #9
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Nice review. That's a truly epic system, but I guess you get what you pay for.

P.S. Is the 1366mhz DDR3 on page 4 intentional?
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 02:26 PM   #10
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Great review Z.......

System's way out of my league at the moment, but man! that's some processing power!
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 02:31 PM Threadstarter Thread Starter   #11
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

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P.S. Is the 1366mhz DDR3 on page 4 intentional?
Thats incorrect,thanks. fixed.
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 02:38 PM   #12
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Very interesting review, the biggest I have ever read .
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 03:52 PM   #13
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

wow. just wow.

Hell of a review and what a product from Intel.
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 04:05 PM   #14
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Incredible rendering times. particularly studiomax. Our business already have some of these systems on order but the 5580's are like gold dust, we might have to opt for the 5570s.
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 05:42 PM   #15
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

tyvm! what is already an awsome setup is going to be even better down the road as more & more apps utilise all that lovely processing power.
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 05:48 PM   #16
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

incredible performance and it shows how far ahead intel are when it comes to high end processing power.

Some of those benchmark results are mind blowing, I am not sure most people realise just how INCREDIBLE they are !

Great review DH, thanks.
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 11:10 PM   #17
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Fantastic review! It's amazing how the new system is sometimes almost twice faster than Skulltrail. Power consumption is also impressive, less than 10% increase under full load and far lower at idle. Probably a tad hot under load for blade servers (Xeons L5520 look perfect for that job, though), but they make for a fantastic workstation.

One slightly off topic question, though: You disabled hyper-threading for the Terragen 2 test, does that mean that Vista can't tell the difference between physical and logical processor cores?
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Old Apr 6, 2009, 11:26 PM Threadstarter Thread Starter   #18
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

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One slightly off topic question, though: You disabled hyper-threading for the Terragen 2 test, does that mean that Vista can't tell the difference between physical and logical processor cores?
It appears in the case of Terragen 2 that Vista would send some threads to logical cores. This isn't really a fault of Vista however, Terragen code should be able to differentiate between physical and logical and instruct the OS. I am sure this will be fixed in a forthcoming patch.
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Old Apr 7, 2009, 12:44 AM   #19
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

i'm quite happy to see hyperthreading back in full swing reguardless....

after using 2 i7 setups for nearly 2 full months.... i can safely say they are astouding chips.... and presented in such a form as this..... it's unbeleiveable right now
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Old Apr 7, 2009, 02:21 AM   #20
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Great review, and holy shit did you put a lot of work into it (but i bet it was pretty fun). I can't remember ever seeing any platform with such improvements over the prior generation. That, and it's power efficiency is impressive.
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Old Apr 7, 2009, 05:33 AM   #21
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

amazing review Z! now it looks like i have to update my systems thread for this....
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Old Apr 7, 2009, 10:36 AM   #22
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

I read bittech review today and I noticed the guy reviewing it was complaining about the power consumption, yet he didn't read it at idle? Thats poor technically as clearly the benefits are too be seen when the CPU's arent under full load and idling.
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Old Apr 7, 2009, 10:40 AM Threadstarter Thread Starter   #23
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

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I read bittech review today and I noticed the guy reviewing it was complaining about the power consumption, yet he didn't read it at idle? Thats poor technically as clearly the benefits are too be seen when the CPU's arent under full load and idling.
Thanks for pointing that out. yes he only tested under load and as you say the benefits of overall power consumption are not clearly taken from such a limited test. At idle we recorded less power drain than even the Opteron system in our compares.

Over the course of a year in a 24/7 environment the savings would be substantial.
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Old Apr 20, 2009, 06:33 PM   #24
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

We just built a couple of these workstations for a client, and I can tell you without a doubt, this is the fastest config we've ever done and the config we did only used E5520's with FX 1800's and by our own benching, and the client's account, this config both met, and exceeded, performance expectations. For ~$2500, you really can't touch it.

Either way, I'd like to see apples-apples benchmarks with a 965EE i7. For some reason, I can never get apples-apples from a top of the line workstation to a TOL Server. For one reason or another, the benches are always slightly different. I have to hope we've got time to get the production team to bench them (which they rarely have time for).

Nonetheless, thanks for the most comprehensive reviews on the net ;-)

Last edited by Lawsonmh15; Apr 20, 2009 at 07:04 PM.
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Old Apr 25, 2009, 08:10 PM   #25
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Great article - the first and only review I've seen on the S5520SC!

I've actually been considering building something around the S5520SC for a while now, but been cautious by the lack of real-world experience. I was actually waiting for Intel to release their rumored Skulltrail II, but so far as I can tell that's still rumor, and I have even seen one quote from Intel that there will not be a Skulltrail II - has anyone else heard about Skulltrail II?

One concern about the S5520SC is that there does not seem to be any overclocking options in the BIOS/EFI. I was hoping that CPU Tweaker could be used with this system, but I cannot get any real information on CPU Tweaker. Does anyone know if CPU Tweaker can be used with the S5520SC or Xeon 5500 series in general?

Does anyone know where you can get more information on CPU Tweaker. I tried joining the forum where CPU Tweaker is discussed, but they turned down my application saying I did not qualify. Pretty elitist bunch; first time I've ever been turned down to join an on-line forum.

So the bottom line is: is there any overclocking potential with the S5520SC?

Cheers, Eric
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Old May 4, 2009, 10:16 AM   #26
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

Great article!

I just have a quick question about the power supply.. why do you need two?

- peter
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Old May 4, 2009, 11:09 AM Threadstarter Thread Starter   #27
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

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Originally Posted by krogh8 View Post
Great article!

I just have a quick question about the power supply.. why do you need two?

- peter
I didn't need two. Enermax and Corsair supplied a unit each and they were split between the various review configurations during testing. The Enermax was mainly used on the Nehalem system. The Corsair HX1000 is perfectly capable of powering the Nehalem EP however. You can find reviews of both PSU's in our reviews section, both are gold award winners.
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Old May 4, 2009, 11:13 AM Threadstarter Thread Starter   #28
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

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Great article - the first and only review I've seen on the S5520SC!

I've actually been considering building something around the S5520SC for a while now, but been cautious by the lack of real-world experience. I was actually waiting for Intel to release their rumored Skulltrail II, but so far as I can tell that's still rumor, and I have even seen one quote from Intel that there will not be a Skulltrail II - has anyone else heard about Skulltrail II?
Intel have not gave me any indication that Skulltrail II is even a concept under development. I am certainly not saying that it isn't coming but to be perfectly honest I would be doubtful.

Quote:
One concern about the S5520SC is that there does not seem to be any overclocking options in the BIOS/EFI. I was hoping that CPU Tweaker could be used with this system, but I cannot get any real information on CPU Tweaker. Does anyone know if CPU Tweaker can be used with the S5520SC or Xeon 5500 series in general?
You need to remember that the S5520SC is not meant to be a mainstream "enthusiast" board, and while I put it through its paces in gaming that the whole design ethos is for stability and professional application. The only overclocking the board is capable of achieving is via the turbo mode detailed in the review. I was speaking with my Asus contact recently and they have a version of this board available however from what he told me there is again no option for manual overclocking.

Quote:
Does anyone know where you can get more information on CPU Tweaker. I tried joining the forum where CPU Tweaker is discussed, but they turned down my application saying I did not qualify. Pretty elitist bunch; first time I've ever been turned down to join an on-line forum.
CPU tweaker has been around for years. Which version are you looking for specifically? There are several versions available via google...

Quote:
So the bottom line is: is there any overclocking potential with the S5520SC?

Cheers, Eric
Manually, no Eric, but the board does a lot of automatic overclocking of the CPU's depending on the thermal situation at the time. I have seen over 3,600mhz out of the 5580's in some instances.
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Old May 4, 2009, 01:46 PM   #29
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

I think i creamed it when i saw those benchmarks.
One hell of a review, i envy you just being able to snap your fingers and hardware show
up at your door lol.

One helluva review Z, great job
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Old May 4, 2009, 04:28 PM Threadstarter Thread Starter   #30
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Re: Intel Xeon W5580 Cpus & S5520SC Motherboard Review @ DH

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We just built a couple of these workstations for a client, and I can tell you without a doubt, this is the fastest config we've ever done and the config we did only used E5520's with FX 1800's and by our own benching, and the client's account, this config both met, and exceeded, performance expectations. For ~$2500, you really can't touch it.
For that price it is a great system for sure. Those models are great value for money.

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For one reason or another, the benches are always slightly different. I have to hope we've got time to get the production team to bench them (which they rarely have time for).
If you have any results of your own, please share, would be great to get more input.

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Nonetheless, thanks for the most comprehensive reviews on the net ;-)
Glad it was useful !
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