Server Chassis Holds 8 DUAL SLOT VIDEO CARDS!
November 20, 2018

On Episode Five of HOLY $H!T, we’ve got a computer case so epic that it had to be delivered on a pallet, rather than the normal means. So of course, we’ve brought with us the only tools suitable to open such a thing. Chopsticks.

The GTX 980 Ti VR EDITION from EVGA provides an industry leading graphics experience, as well as a 5.25″ bay with easy access input for your VR device. Learn more at the link in the video description. Okay. Well, that was obviously completely stupid. Let’s go with the more traditional, knive, to open this baby up.

So inside this box is actually more than just a computer case. In fact, there’s a case, a power supply and a motherboard. Yes, my friends, this is the first time we’ve ever had a chance to check out one of Supermicro’s barebone server units that they sell.

But this one is very special. One that I wish I had known about a month ago when I was trying to do the 7 Gamers, 1 CPU project, and the only way that I could figure out to put seven graphics cards into a single computer was to watercool the whole bloody thing, with all this, like, custom nonsense and I had to find the one motherboard on Earth that would work, et cetera… No, my friends. There was an easy way to do it all alone. All I had to do was get one of these bad boys. Oh, cool. They actually like, pre-modded it for me.

So let’s– Let’s pull this out. Let’s pull this out. Check this out. Check this out.

Oh yes, my friends. Yes, my friends. That is exactly what it looks like.

The entire rear of a 4U chassis taken up entirely by expansion slots. Alright, my friends. So let’s take a quick tour of this absolute beast of a monster. This is Eh, we’re gonna read it off at this– Supermicro 4027GR-TR. Which, actual– Which actually isn’t the right thing. They told me they were sending the TRT.

The one with the 10 Gigabit Network Interface built-in. Maybe they included like, an upgrade module or something. So, first of all, this is cool.

It includes four 1600 W power supplies. Yes, friends. That is for all kinds of crazy power delivery, along with redundancy. Which is important to any kind of server environment. You can see there, this tiny slim little units here.

Let’s, uh, let’s see if we can read this baby. Yeah, this is the DPS-1600CB. So the output is actually 1600 Watts max If– Oh, this is interesting. I have never seen a discrepancy like that before. So, at 120 Volt input, it’s 1000 Watts max, and at 240 Volt input, it is 1600 Watts max. Very, very interesting.

So, I’m gonna have to make sure I run this baby on a 240 V input. But in the meantime, let’s see if Supermicro included like, an upgrade module kit or something like that. Ah, this are our rails.

These are those really nice rails that I like. So we’re gonna go ahead and rail mount this baby in the rack. And then, in here I’m hoping to find, um… Well, nothing, apparently. Uh, okay.

Okay, well– Let’s open it up then, I guess. Oh, but first. No. A tour of the front.

So, there’s more to this. There are more tricks up this baby’s sleeves than just a bunch of video cards. So this server will actually be taking the place of two servers. Because in addition to accepting up to eight dual-slot video cards, it can also handle with these 2.5″ sleds, 24 SSDs.

So this will be completely taking over Whonnock server’s duties in addition to being the new output render station that we never actually properly finished, ’cause we were trying to combine that one’s duties with our ingest station, and that ended up causing instability issues due to different versions of Adobe Premiere from different years, operating at the same ti– Long story. Anyway, it was kinda ugly and we are looking for a better way to do this. So, tool-less, uh, top?

It looks like. Let’s find out if we can get this baby off. Oh, you know, we need to unscrew somethings. It only pretends to be tool-less. Check out this modification.

That spoiler is actually there for a reason. And I will explain it in a little while here. Oh, yes. That, that is fun. So, uh, here, let’s try and– let’s try and sort this babies out a little bit.

See if we got– see what we got going on here. So this motherboard supports two LGA 2011-3 CPUs. So we’re gonna be putting our two 18 cores 2699-v3 in here, for a total of 36 cores. And on top of that, it supports a total of twelve DIMM slots. You can see they were testing it. They had, uh, that looks like sixteen DIMMs in here before they sent it to me.

So, twelve DIMM slots per CPU for a total of Lucky Nugget slots. That means, with the 32 gig DIMMs that Kingston sent us for 7 Gamers, 1 CPU We could put, 32 times 24, whatever, that works out too, inside here. This is another really cool feature that I wish would make its way to the desktop. Check out these fans. There are, uh, no– These are not the counter-spinning fans. So, these are just regular old 92 mm fans except for one thing.

Do you notice that? I just pulled it out. Where was the connector? Servers have had this forever. Hot swap fans. So you just thunk them in, and boom.

Look at this. We’ve got little slots all over the place here for all these different fan connectors. Check this out. And you can see they actually got two stacks of them. One in front of the other, in order to give these puppies, pretty much unlimited static pressure.

So, they’re pulling all that ventilation in from these holes in the fron– whoop– Hold on. Try not to drop this. from these holes in front, here, as well as through where those SSD mounts go. So, they gotta have a ton of static pressure. Because these puppies are not just you know, cooling some run-of-the-mill computer. We’re talking 36 processing cores, a bunch of RAM, and up to Yes, this is where life gets really interesting.

Up to eight graphics cards. One, two, three, four. One, two, three, four. Each of which can be dual-slot. And then in addition to that it can handle another three expansion cards of whatever type you desire. So, I actually guess nothing would prevent you from putting ten in here if you really, really wanted to.

Which is, um, which is sort of bananas. So, let’s go ahead and see what it will look like will all those installed. Okay, you wanna come with me while I go retrieve graphics card? Alright.

So, let’s pick some video cards, shall we? Let’s go with, uh, what do we got here? I don’t know.

Some kind of 290, or 390, or something. All right. What else we got here?

Ooh, GTX 580. Sure thing, no problem. What else we got? GTX 980. Yeah.

Let’s take one of those. And, uh– Ooh, GTX 780 Ti. That sounds pretty good.

We got a good good representation of the market share of these two graphics card companies. Alright. Let’s take these back and install. Don’t trip. One really cool thing I wanna point out before we get any further in, though, is that most of what you see up here is actually just like, like a– like a dummy board. Like, this is like a daugherboard.

It’s not– there’s not a ton of logic on it, actually. It installs into the motherboard, which is below see down here, using, looks like four hard PCB bridges down here and then that’s what does all the controlling. So it’s actually all mapped out for you. So, here’s CPU1, here’s CPU2. And then, all of these are labelled right here. So this is CPU1 slot one, PCIe3.0x16.

CPU1 slot ten? Okay, well, numbering doesn’t make any sense to me so far. But it goes: one, ten, nine, eight, seven six, five– Anyway.

So it says CPU1, CPU2, and it’s kind of spelled out for you like that. So let’s start installing video cards. AMD and NVIDIA, living together in perfect harmony. Don’t know how that song goes, but I think you guys get the reference.

I don’t even know if I’m gonna be able to find enough video cards to fill this thing up. That’s ridiculous. Okay. So, before we put any more in, I wanna take a short break and give you guys a better appreciation of the scale of what we’re dealing with here. This is a normal ATX motherboard.

It can fit four graphics cards total, if you include one here and if you install one in the very bottom slot and have it overhang the bottom of the board. So, look a little something like that. This is what we’re dealing with here!

It’s ridiculous. So, let’s keep the ridiculousness up. Let’s put some more graphics cards in. Let’s put one here. Wow, that’s a long card.

Bit it fits just fine. Let’s put one here. Oh, balls. This is a stupid, modified one from Scrapyard Wars that– I’ll just remove it. See, it’s not a standard width.

But, that’s okay. There are so many different spots for graphics cards. Server stuff. All about that convenience. No PCI Express locks. You wanna pull the card out?

Boom. You pull it out. No big deal.

Right there. “Okay, Linus.” “But what about that thing you promised us before? You said you’d explain” “why this thing is a freaking humpback whale.” Now, just because we can install, you know, 6990s, like crazy long cards like this doesn’t mean that you can install anything you want in a system like this and we are somewhat limited in terms of the height of our graphics cards. Because one of the “U”s. So, U is your vertical– vertical measurement of height for a system like this.

One of the “U”s is taken up by all those power supplies here at the back, with only three left for graphics cards. That means, any cards that are taller than standard are not going to fit within that 4U enclosure size. What that also means is that any cards that are designed with their power plugs coming out of the top of the card like this, would interfere with a flat top panel. Which is why we got this modified humpback one there we go, that is gonna take up a little bit of space above out server.

So, let’s go ahead and make sure that actually fits okay. Yes. That fits perfectly with all of our graphics cards. Love it. So, we’ve got big plans for this thing. We’re gonna be doing a video where we explore who makes the best GPU for video encoding in Premiere.

So, we’re gonna do like, an AMD versus NVIDIA head-to-head, and show a bunch of different classes of GPU, find out if you even need a super powerful one. We’re gonna be doing one where we have eight game streams running off of a single machine at a time. That is gonna be flipping sick.

And finally, we are going to be– maybe, actually. Guys, let me know if you want too see this. But maybe doing a showcase of the final build that I do in here, with the 24 SSDs. Maybe it’ll be like a follow-up HOLY $H!T episode, rather than the normal release. With all the SSDs, as well as all the graphics cards that we ended up putting into it.

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But very soon! So, thank you for checking out this episode of HOLY $H!T. Our new 36 cores, 8 GPU machine. Don’t forget, if you enjoy this video, then like it.

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