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Thread: is any gpu better then no gpu?

  1. #1
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    Default is any gpu better then no gpu?

    In my case I may have to say yes. But pairing a ~10 year old gpu with an 8 core Xeon? Problem is the onboard video is so awful. Video playback is choppy. A post online states it only comes doen to cpu clock (mine is 3.2ghz) but I beg to differ. I was warned about Supermicros crappy video. You can get nos x16 pci-e catds for around 30$ shipped. I am not getting into the pay to play gaming scene anytime soon. So spending 200$ on a gtx 1660 doesn't necessarily make a lot of sense either, at least right now. But I can't live with the poor performance.

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    If you are getting a card that was priced at $200 a few years ago, that would very likely outperform any integrated video.

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    Supermicro makes server class motherboards, the integrated video is designed to get an OS installed and that is about it. The server will generally run headless for almost all of it's life. So yeah, the ATI Rage graphics on there is not going to win any records. So you would almost certainly want to pair it with some sort of dedicated Graphics card. Just buy something modern that fits, but don't spend more than $50 - $75 on it. Or go for something older that is that same price point, but was 200 - 300 when new.

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    What chip is the built in video? If the board is a server board you have some ancient basic slow GUI.

    Run coretemp when you play a video and notice if the cpu cores are pegged or not.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknown_K View Post
    What chip is the built in video?
    I'd put money on it being a Rage 128 PCI chipset.

    EDIT - Or a Rage XL PCI
    Last edited by lutiana; August 13th, 2020 at 08:42 PM.

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  6. #6

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    This thread is rather puzzling to me, as I don't know what your current GPU is, what your OS is, what video you are trying to play, or what program you use to play it.

    What I do know, is that 1080p plays on a GeForce 210 (11 year old card) using hardware decoding. Software decoding is fine on a 2.0GHz+ Athlon 64 X2. That's using VLC. To play 2160p it would take a GeForce 6xx (8 year old card) or a Phenom II.

    edit: PCI video would explain it...

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    Quote Originally Posted by lutiana View Post
    I'd put money on it being a Rage 128 PCI chipset.
    There was a long period of time where the ATI Rage XL was used on server motherboards. The Rage XL is basically a Rage 128 core with all but the 2D functionality stripped out. It was still used on server motherboards long after the last version of Windows to support such old video chips was supported, being either Windows XP or Server 2003.

    AMD sold the design for the Rage XL to another outfit called Nuvoton, which continued to produce the design under their own brand, which continued to be used on server motherboards.

    The only thing the Rage XL core does is give you a frame buffer, there is zero acceleration on anything, even 2D operations. The Rage core was based on DirectX 6, where Windows Vista onwards at minimum requires Direct X 9 for GUI acceleration. Linux is no better because the Rage never had proper OpenGL support.

    I had a LGA1155 Super Micro server board probably 6-7 years ago with a Nuvoton Rage XL for video, and it was dreadful. It baffled me why Super Micro used such a horrible video chip, when most LGA1155 CPUs had an IGP that was fathoms better. You couldn't use a discrete video card on the board either because it only had PCIe x1, x4 or an x8 slot with no open back, so you couldn't insert a x16 card and just have the unused connector hang out the back. I got rid of that board because it was such a garbage design.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tipc View Post
    In my case I may have to say yes. But pairing a ~10 year old gpu with an 8 core Xeon? Problem is the onboard video is so awful. Video playback is choppy. A post online states it only comes doen to cpu clock (mine is 3.2ghz) but I beg to differ. I was warned about Supermicros crappy video. You can get nos x16 pci-e catds for around 30$ shipped. I am not getting into the pay to play gaming scene anytime soon. So spending 200$ on a gtx 1660 doesn't necessarily make a lot of sense either, at least right now. But I can't live with the poor performance.
    I have an ATI X1650 Pro 512 if you're interested.
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    Quote Originally Posted by GiGaBiTe View Post
    It was still used on server motherboards long after the last version of Windows to support such old video chips was supported, being either Windows XP or Server 2003..
    I am reasonably sure that Server 2016 and 2019 still support the Rage 128 and XL, or at least the basic VGA driver they use in those cases was written explicitly to support those GPUs. They perform like garbage though, but adequate for basic Windows setup and/or Windows Core usage. I also believe that these GPUs are also fully supported by the Linux kernel as they are so prolific in the server market.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiGaBiTe View Post
    I had a LGA1155 Super Micro server board probably 6-7 years ago with a Nuvoton Rage XL for video, and it was dreadful. It baffled me why Super Micro used such a horrible video chip, when most LGA1155 CPUs had an IGP that was fathoms better.
    I don't think there are any Xeon CPUs that have built in GPUs, it would be a waste of resources. The design emphasis on server class boards is for them to be reliable and to be run headless. The onboard GPU is enough for you to install the OS and deploy it in a rack, from there everything is should be done remotely. So the GPU was striped of everything in order to get on the board as cheap as possible as their customers would not want to spend the extra on a feature they don't care about.

    Quote Originally Posted by GiGaBiTe View Post
    I got rid of that board because it was such a garbage design.
    Honestly, it sounds like your use case was outside the design purpose of the board, so you had issues. This is why you generally don't use server boards for desktop use cases. There are a ton of things most server boards can and cannot do that you would never want in a desktop use case (like your PCIe issue and the VERY basic GPU). Stick with a desktop or workstation board for daily use desktop workloads. This is a bit like buying a truck and expecting it to get the same gas mileage as a civic.
    Last edited by lutiana; August 13th, 2020 at 08:48 PM.

    IBM 5160 - 360k, 1.44Mb Floppies, NEC V20, 8087-3, 45MB MFM Hard Drive, Vega 7 Graphics, IBM 5154 Monitor running MS-DOS 5.00
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  10. #10
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    For an actual server board, I can understand bare minimum graphics performance (but this be ridiculous SuperO). Technically this is a workstation board as I see it (x11srm-f, m for uATX). Ok it's not a requirement for a server to host multiple processors, nor be eatx (or even atx). You can run 10 or server 2019 (and various nix'). I spend way too much money lately, the tiny ssd I do have has data I need (I always think I need something). So I bought an identical Adata 120gb (pathetic I know, but generally I don't need a lot of primary storage) and loaded up Win 10 Pro oem. Xeon W-2140b (from a Mac Pro), 8gb ram. That's all she wrote for now. I was itching to try out Handbrake, but latest version is crap. So I resigned to watch a few episodes of the Sarah Connor Chronicles. Then ewwww. That's not going to work.

    It has an x16 pci-e slot so eventually. I'll buy something respectable. Assuming I don't sell this (I'm thinking it would be difficult to find a buyer. Before I bought a working cpu, had the mobo listed on ebay for a while, no takers). But like I said not 200$ right now. I have a lot on my plate.

    No I haven't tried tweaking anything. All I know is my videos run flawlessly on every other thing I own. And the Supermicro is the fastest by at least a factor of 10.

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