I’m looking to build a new rig for machine learning and software development.
I’ve kind of settled on getting an Nvidia A6000 as my GPU, starting with just one for now, but possibly getting more in the future if needed – realistically I can see myself adding one more, but having the ability to upgrade my system up to 4 A6000s like this build does look very appealing.
I was originally considering the Threadripper 3960x (or if I feel like spending a bit more a 3970x), which seemed like the best fit for a build like this. The problem is that I feel like an idiot buying a Zen 2 chip that was released in 2019 in 2021. There are some rumors of new chips coming out in November, does it make sense to wait until then? But then who knows if they are really going to be released and available then.
One alternative I’m looking at would be a Ryzen 9 5950X, which is only around half of what the TR costs giving me nice savings. I would probably get better single-threaded performance (which may be nice for some use cases), and having 16 cores still isn’t bad, but it does seem that I would have to limit the future upgradability of my build to two GPUs only due to the number of PCI lanes available. Anything else to keep in mind when choosing between a TR and Ryzen 9?
The other option would be a Milan EPYC chip (something like a 7443P?) but it makes me a bit worried about potential compatibility issues I may face using a server board. On the other hand, I would get practically unlimited upgradability in terms of adding more GPUs and anything else I might need. Is there anyone with experience using an EPYC as a desktop/workstation CPU? I’ll be using Linux so I don’t care about Windows drivers.
One last consideration for me is that I want to install a Gigabyte Titan Ridge 2.0 which should be able to take in two DisplayPort connections from my GPU and merge them into a single Thunderbolt cable, which is needed for my LG Ultrafine 5k monitor. There seems to be one Designare MB for TR CPUs which even comes with the card, but I’m wondering if I can get it working on other motherboards too. I’ve read people just short some pins on the cable that’s supposed to go into the motherboard so it may not matter very much which MB I choose.