[Beowulf] Vector coprocessors

Craig Tierney ctierney at hypermall.net
Thu Mar 16 10:40:02 PST 2006

Daniel Pfenniger wrote:
> Craig Tierney wrote:
> ...
>> Do you have pricing on the Cell blades or co-processor boards?  I doubt
>> they will be $8k, but I doubt they will be $100-$500.
> For the Cell my guess is that if it fits in a game station it cannot cost
> well over $500.-

But you cannot put a game station in a PCI-E slot.  Although the chip
won't be very expensive the proper hardware to use it won't be
in volume like the chip.  It won't be $8k, but I doubt it will be
that cheap.

> Last time I asked Clearspeed they would not disclose a price since the
> cards were not ready for shipping.  Asking for a cost order of magnitude
> (will it be in the 1'000, 10'000, or 100'000 range?) somewhat below 10k
> appeared a reasonable estimate.
> For my applications this is not competitive with commodity multicore
> processors because I don't expect this card bringing more than a
> factor 2-3 speedup (not much of the code would use long vectors
> instructions).

What if you need a 2-3x speedup, and you don't have a computer room?
Do you want 4 nodes on your desktop?  I wouldn't need it for my work, 
but I can see where it would be useful.


> Dan

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