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Cheap GPU folding build

FlyingFish

Well-known member
Joined
May 9, 2009
Messages
482
Location
Vancouver
I've got a few spare parts lying around and I'm thinking of building a cheap folding machine to stick under my desk at work. (Hooray for free power!) I plan on just turning it on and leaving it there until it blows up.

I've got an Asus 775 motherboard, a GTX 260, a case, an XP license and an Antec AS300 power supply which will be replaced at some point depending on what I scrounge up. I'm probably going to hit up free geek in Vancouver for the CPU and ram. ($5 CPU for the win)

My questions are:

-What CPU do I need for GPU folding? If I fold on the 260 can I get by with a Pentium 4 or do I need something beefier?
-How much memory do I need? Is 2gb enough or do I need more? Can I get by with 1gb?
 

LarkStarr

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 4, 2007
Messages
1,626
I'd imagine 1 gb on xp is fine for gpu folding .. P4 might be another question. cheap core 2 duo might be a lot better.
 

chrisk

Folding Captain
Joined
Jul 12, 2008
Messages
7,543
Location
GTA, Ontario
GPU folding does not use much CPU resources. If you already have a P4 around or can get it for free then try it. I would still try to get 2GB of ram though, as I would say that will limit you more than the CPU might. To be honest, I have not seen a machine with those specs fold recent WUs in a while, but I would just get the 2GB to be safe and try the P4.
 

LarkStarr

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Oct 4, 2007
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1,626
more is always better, and these guys know more then I do for sure. :D
 

MARSTG

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Apr 22, 2011
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Montreal
Didn't want to start a new thread. I am looking for a video card for myself, will give me 5770 to my gf, she will also do some folding, and I am looking for something for myself. I am looking at either GTX 460 or GTX 550 Ti. Which would be faster for folding? I guess the more CUDA cores the faster? Newegg has the Asus ENGTX460 directCU TOP/2DI/768MD5 at 145 with a 30$ MIR. I guess would be a good buy? Oh yeah, forgot to tell you, i am limited by the PSU to a single 6pin connector. Any GTX 460 with a single 6pin connector?
 
Last edited:

chrisk

Folding Captain
Joined
Jul 12, 2008
Messages
7,543
Location
GTA, Ontario
Didn't want to start a new thread. I am looking for a video card for myself, will give me 5770 to my gf, she will also do some folding, and I am looking for something for myself. I am looking at either GTX 460 or GTX 550 Ti. Which would be faster for folding? I guess the more CUDA cores the faster? Newegg has the Asus ENGTX460 directCU TOP/2DI/768MD5 at 145 with a 30$ MIR. I guess would be a good buy? Oh yeah, forgot to tell you, i am limited by the PSU to a single 6pin connector. Any GTX 460 with a single 6pin connector?
You sure you limited to one connector? Often cards will come with, or you can buy, a molex to PCI-E adapter, which will allow you to use an available molex plug for your gpu.

I would go with a 460 for the additional cores. Overclock the core a bit when you get it.
 

MARSTG

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Apr 22, 2011
Messages
4,458
Location
Montreal
My PSU is the first Antec true power 550 which has that weird molex connector you would attach on the mobo. Already composed a 6pin for the 5770 with 2 molexes and don't have any other molex to do that. I would have to change the PSU completely to get something with 2 6pin connectors. In this case I would be going with an OCZ modXStream pro 500, had it before and was working nice.
 

Arinoth

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Staff member
Joined
May 27, 2009
Messages
9,321
Location
Halifax
A 550 Ti can yield at least 10k PPD, its at least what i found when i was folding it beside 2 560Tis and cpu folding during the CC.

With a shameless pitch, I'm selling it as well if you check out my BST Thread
 

MARSTG

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 22, 2011
Messages
4,458
Location
Montreal
Ok, so basically with a 550Ti I can still pull some respectable numbers but the performance seems to be on par with the 5770. From what I see in the tests to make an approximation ATI-Nvidia, would seem one nV processor core = 4 cores in the ATI architecture. Also 5770 and 550Ti are midrange products while I really wanted some high end. Well I guess upgrade needs to start at the PSU first. And because I have a lot of fans in the Antec 900 I don't want to compromise the cooling, by disconnecting the fans to create a second 6 pin power connector. Besides I don't know how old this PSU really is, i bought it used already, so it might be a refreshing point to get a new PSU anyway which will open some upgrade paths. Makes more sense now?
 
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