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  #1  
Old 01-07-2010, 04:47 PM
kirkgale kirkgale is offline
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Default Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

As people on this board will know, there is still no i7 motherboard available in the world with 3 contiguous PCI-x slots, while at least one has 2 PCI-x slots and one PCI slot which are right next to each other (i.e., the Supermicro X8SAX board used by at least myself and Third Eye Studios who, together with at least undergroundcubby and DigitalMetal all have the same need for an i7 PC to stably run an HD3 system).
Unfortunately as the pioneer, my system is stable only when using the Core card and one Accel Card in the two-afforded PCI-x slots (when also inserting the 2nd Accel card into the PCI slot, “PT not responding” and freeze up behavior occurs shortly after booting PT in response to mere VI window dragging or opening/closing etc.).
I have been working with Supermicro support for these 3 weeks using a non-published BIOS update from them which newly sports a PCI-x slot frequency adjustment menu (e.g., 33, 66, 133, etc. including Auto mghz settings). The question is whether I should take it off “Auto” and dumb down the PCI-x slots to 33 mghz or what (the Supermicro guy suggested to keep on Auto which would generally mean its running @ 133)...
But perhaps Digidesign or other tech experts have a more seasoned opinion for our PT purposes...?
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Old 01-07-2010, 05:15 PM
x9blade x9blade is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

hello kirkgale try finding a mobo with 5 slots like my q6600 loaded gigaabyte, which is not made anymore .
was wondering if you were in communications with someone at supermicro maybe you could ask them to build as a 5 slot mobo for an I7. good luck to you
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  #3  
Old 01-07-2010, 05:48 PM
DigitalMetal DigitalMetal is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Hi x9blade,
i remember speaking to you about getting my gigabyte board up and stable did you ever get any stability from yours?
I ditched mine along time ago in favour of the Asus P5wDG2-WS pro and not had anywhere near as much trouble,
Whats stopping you getting a second hand 64 bit Magma Chassis? they can be got pretty cheap now on ebay.

Kirkgale,
I have my HD3 in a Magma 64 bit PCIX Expansion Chassis but run 2 PCI powercore cards too,
I wonder what the supermicro board would be like running the chassis on just one of its PCIX slots,
Unfortunately im not about to buy a board CPU and RAM just to try it out,
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  #4  
Old 01-07-2010, 07:26 PM
lifer lifer is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Umm.. this has 4 PCI slots which work with PCIx cards..
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Gigab...rboard-LGA1156

This has 3
http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Asus-...rboard-LGA1156

As does this
http://www.scan.co.uk/product.aspx?P...780&ms=msso094

They should all work fine. I use a 33mhz slot motherboard and never had any problems.
Personally I am planning to get the ASUS one as a replacement for my current board so I can use an i7 cpu.
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  #5  
Old 01-07-2010, 09:43 PM
sunburst79 sunburst79 is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Keep in mind the PCI HD cards are the 64bit form PCI slot factor they are NOT actually PCI-X. Later Revisions of the PCI-X spec made the slots backwards capable with 64bit cards so running the cards at 33MHz should be just fine.
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  #6  
Old 01-08-2010, 01:21 AM
kirkgale kirkgale is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Lifer,
I should have specified that my i7 (the 965 extreme) is from the 1 year ago generation which I understand can’t be used in the 3 boards you mention (all being LGA1156 Socket / P55 chipset boards). Please let me know if I am wrong.
Sunburst79,
Right….no wonder the cards are said to work stuffed into PCI slots even with those extra card teeth hanging in the air.
So, you’re saying there’s hope if I tell my BIOS to dumb down the 2 PCI-x slots to 33 mghz (i.e., the match the mghz of the 3rd-Accel card stuffed into the PCI slot)?
I’ll report over the weekend.
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:07 AM
sunburst79 sunburst79 is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Quote:
Originally Posted by kirkgale View Post

Lifer,



I should have specified that my i7 (the 965 extreme) is from the 1 year ago generation which I understand can’t be used in the 3 boards you mention (all being LGA1156 Socket / P55 chipset boards). Please let me know if I am wrong.



Sunburst79,



Right….no wonder the cards are said to work stuffed into PCI slots even with those extra card teeth hanging in the air.



So, you’re saying there’s hope if I tell my BIOS to dumb down the 2 PCI-x slots to 33 mghz (i.e., the match the mghz of the 3rd-Accel card stuffed into the PCI slot)?



I’ll report over the weekend.
Yeah I'm guessing. You can more on Wikipedia about PCIx and PCI. 64 bit PCI is a real odd duck. It was a server technology that was almost immediately replaced by PCI-X. The main differance was the PCI-X spec started at 133MHz and then bumped to 266 and later made backwards compatible to 100, 66 and 33 MHz. It's confusing as hell.

Regarding the cards finger count...Suppossedly there is a minor reduction in DSP/Voicing if you run a card in a 32bit slot. But the guys running the ASUS P5DG2 WS never noticed a difference. I suspect like the differece between PCI and PCIe any difference goes away as you add more cards. Digi has a whitepaper on PCI vs PCIe power out there somewhere.

I would like to point out I don't own a PCI HD system. So take this as some uncomformed information. I'm not trying to come across as an expert just point out that 133Mhz is probably going to be to fast. I'll talk to Bob Nagy later today and see if he remembers what he had to set his PCI-X slots to.
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  #8  
Old 01-08-2010, 10:19 AM
DigitalMetal DigitalMetal is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Quote:
Originally Posted by sunburst79 View Post
Keep in mind the PCI HD cards are the 64bit form PCI slot factor they are NOT actually PCI-X. Later Revisions of the PCI-X spec made the slots backwards capable with 64bit cards so running the cards at 33MHz should be just fine.
SO you are saying that running PCIX HD Cards in PCIX 133Mhz Slots has no benefit over running them in PCI 33mhz Slots ?
If you are do you have any certified proof of this from digidesign?

What about the 64 bit expansion chassis?
My P7 magma chassis is 64 bit PCIX with a PCIX host card, so all 7 slots have to squeeze down one 133MHz connection, surely thats beneficial over a 32bit expansion chassis too ?

Does anyone know if there is a way i can monitor how much bandwidth a single pci card is utilizing on my system ?
Or how much is going through a chosen slot?
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PT10HD5 PCIX in 64Bit Magma Chassis,
2x192io's + 2x96io's & Legacy io's
Pro Control & Fader Pack
UAD2 Quad, Octo & All Plugins
Black Lion Audio Modified MOTU 24io and 2408MK3 x2
TC Powercore PCI MK2 x2 & Firewire

Softube, Sonnox, Eventide, SSL, McDSP, Waves
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  #9  
Old 01-08-2010, 10:37 AM
DigitalMetal DigitalMetal is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

Ive just found this which is quite interesting:

http://www.proaudiosolutions.com/product-p/p7r464.htm

In the description is says:

"System Requirements

The System Requirements for the MAGMA 64-bit/33MHz 7 Slot PCI-to-PCI Expansion System is simple:

Any PCI-based host computer or server with at least one the following slots:

* 32-bit/33MHz PCI slot
* 64-bit/33MHz PCI slot
* 64-bit/66MHz PCI slot
* PCI-X PCI slot

The PCI expansion system can perform as fast as the host slot up to 64-bit/33MHz PCI Bus speed (264MB/sec)."



and this here on the magma website

Interconnect Bandwidth
132 MB/sec (Theoretical Max of PCI 32/33) or
264MB/sec (Theoretical Max. of PCI 64/33)
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PT10HD5 PCIX in 64Bit Magma Chassis,
2x192io's + 2x96io's & Legacy io's
Pro Control & Fader Pack
UAD2 Quad, Octo & All Plugins
Black Lion Audio Modified MOTU 24io and 2408MK3 x2
TC Powercore PCI MK2 x2 & Firewire

Softube, Sonnox, Eventide, SSL, McDSP, Waves
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  #10  
Old 01-08-2010, 11:31 AM
x9blade x9blade is offline
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Default Re: Problem using 3 card system in a mixture of PCI-x and PCI slots

hey guys will be giving this thread a little more attention later on tonight.
yes digi metal we have spoke about this in the past. hope all is well with you . i was asking brandon the other day about his chassis he had nothing but good to say about it.
my main question would be, when tracking a live band does using the chassis create any added latency????? this is really the big issue in my workflow.
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