Upgrade - Stay with Xeon or go Threadripper

I’m thinking about upgrading my Xeon v4 primary workstation early next year. These are the current specs:

Most of the components are still pretty high spec after last year’s round of upgrades (current my 4th rebuild on this motherboard). So I was thinking of concentrating on the CPUs this time around as they (and the 2133 RAM) are pretty much the oldest part of the system.
The 4TB Hybrid drives currently in JBOD will be replaced by a pair of 14TB drives in RAID1 (I already have these drives). This is scratch space used for storing easily replaced stuff like my steam game library.
I prefer to use ECC RAM as I pass a lot of data through this system before archiving it on a separate unraid box or to ultrium tape.

I do a lot of things on this box. Gaming, VMs, Video encoding and about half my life in 1000 tabs in the browser.
I usually run some Arch variant… currently it’s Manjaro 18

Still undecided about a major upgrade vs getting my hands on some high clocked higher core count v4 Xeons and waiting another year for 7nm/10nm. But the max I’d be willing to spend would be ~€3000 on a major upgrade. For that I’d want to see a 40%+ uplift in synthetic benchmarks or a mix of that and lower power consumption.

Also if anyone knows of a suitable desktop 2.1 amp for a system like this with two additional SPDIF inputs (for laptop and sonos). I currently use a Teac Al-101DA which is dying…

Grateful for any opinions.

If you game TR 3xxx is the way to go from what I have seen. Idk if upgrading is worth it and dual socket = big money to ugprade as people for what ever reason pay big money for intel still.

1 Like

Do you need lots of PCIe?

I have five PCIe cards at the moment. The 2080Ti, a 10GBe NIC, SAS Controller, Optane SSD and an M.2 SSD on a PCIe card.
Obviously if I had a MB with some of those functions built-in I could skip some of those cards.
I do want the option of doing SLI with the 2080Ti so I’d need 32 lanes for that + 4 for the Optane + 4 for the SAS + whatever the onboard PCIe devices need.

So you want higher compute performance and more PCIe lanes than you can get on any consumer platform.

Well, TR3000 is your answer. :grinning:


Still might steal some lanes even if built in depending if attacked to chipset or cpu and even then still stealing bandwith from chipset

You would really only need 16 doubt it would make a major difference

1 Like

Threadripper does get me back to a simpler single socket system.

The problem I think is the ECC…
My preference is for Asus boards… and the Zenith II would be ideal… but it doesn’t seem to have documented ECC support.

I’m also worried about the lack of choice in AIO cooling solutions for TR4

All AMD chips support ECC minus APUs unless they are PRO (Unbuffered ECC)

1 Like

Why? Unbuffered ECC is fine. Even on Ryzen.
The Zenith II actually has ECC modules in it’s QVL.

My bad… hadn’t checked the QVL.

Now all I have to do is figure out how to keep it all in budget

Or you keep your current rig for the CPU compute performance, take out some parts that aren’t needed for it and build a more standard desktop next to it?

That is 100% the hard part, you can factor in some money from resell.

1 Like

This is my initial attempt.


That’s the only suitable RAM module from the QVL if I want 128GB of RAM.
CPU + cooler + board fall in budget… the RAM doesn’t. I was already counting on some resale of hardware to make up the €3000. So I may have to start with fewer modules or revisit the budget.

some 2933 ecc should be out soon if you want to wait as well as 32gb modules in that size

Just use your current ram for now? I mean, it is DDR4.

Think you answered your own question there.
As far as i know optane is intel locked, so like mac users you bought yourself into a locked eco system.
dunno if there is a workaround, or likes, but id deffinetly go with the TR system regardless.
less power usage, higher performance, more cores, etc etc, worst case discard your optane and do without, or get a replacement SSD.

on a side note.
Don’t buy platform locked hardware/software, it is only rewarding bad/greedy behavior.

What are you talking about I have a 900P in my TR rig?


Yeah, it’s just a drive. If there is any limitation it’s probably also just a windows thing and that isn’t a problem here either.
Edit: Oh, it’s just one of the PCIe drives? Yeah, there is just no limitation at all.

Ok “mea culpa”

I didn’t take into consideration that the latest version of intel optane SSD’s can be used on AMD, at 4 x the price of a regular SSD.
For the original poster, id still advice you to buy the Thread ripper system, but ->include<- your optane SSD if it is a 900p series, else i refer to my original post.

No one is using the 32gb nvme x2 drives they make no sense And even those arent locked down at all. Their HDD cache tech is kind of but there are ways to still do that on amd