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It's been so long since I posted my first deal that this may as well be my first post. Be gentle

Dell Outlet has a nice batch of Precision T5600 Workstations on clearance at fair prices (linky). There's also a coupon code for an extra 15% off T5600s - KX3KBLB1F1$42K.

The fantastic thing about this systems is that the boards are dual-socket. I wanted to buy in to a Xeon E5-2600 series on the cheap and have lots of upgrade options in the future. The boards also support up to 128GB of ECC RAM at 1600mhz in 8 slots. I don't think the exact rig I ordered is available any longer, but there are lots of similar deals. Major specs of what I ordered:

Dell T5600 - Certified Refurbished
Single Intel Xeon E5-2620 (2.0ghz, Six Core, Hyper-Threading/12 Thread)
Open second socket!
16GB (4x4) ECC 1600mhz RAM (4 slots still open)
ATI 1GB FirePro V4900
Hardware RAID controller
Integrated Intel 10/100/1000 NIC with Jumbo Frames support
250GB 7200RPM HDD

$1049 - 15% = $891.65 + Free Shipping + Tax = $936.21 Shipped

I priced an identically configured system new and it came out to about $2100 after all of Dell's "instant discounts." I also priced similar systems at Newegg and found not much less than $2000 their either.

Disclaimer: I'm not a gamer. I realize this kind of system isn't for everyone - especially gamers. I needed a nice transcoding box to house my Plex server. I was looking at quad-core AMD boxes. Now I can run a nicely spec'd Plex box in Hyper-V and still have tons of RAM and CPU power to spare for other VMs. I did look at other systems (the XPS 8500 with the i7-3770, for instance) but they were all about the same price. The most valuable thing for me is having that empty second socket and (for my purposes) virtually unlimited RAM expansion.

Member Summary

T5600 Workstations
Thanks Wemic
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Kashisti, thank you for posting! A plex server is exactly the reason I setup a "desktop" alert on FW. Just curious, how many people are you supporting with your plex server? What OS do you plan to use an what is your ISP upload speed? TIA!

ganjagadget said:   Kashisti, thank you for posting! A plex server is exactly the reason I setup a "desktop" alert on FW. Just curious, how many people are you supporting with your plex server? What OS do you plan to use an what is your ISP upload speed? TIA!

Right now I'm running our Plex server off of a dual-core Atom powered HP X310 StorageWorks headless box with 2GB of RAM (A FatWallet Black Friday purchase the year before last!). That's only good enough to feed two iPads with SD feeds simultaneously. We want to be able to do three iPads with SD feeds simultaneously, plus one Roku at 20mpbs 1080p. The Rokus are all hard-wired. From the research I did it sounds like a decent quad-core would meet that need.

We don't do a whole lot of streaming to clients while we're away from home but our Comcast connection is supposedly 25/50 Up/Down.

I'll be installing Windows Server 2012 on this new rig (well...Plex will be in a Hyper-V VM, but both the host and guest will have Server 2012). That dual-core Atom box is currently running 2012, as are my other three servers. One of those other three servers is my main file share, where I've got about 8TB of stuff shared out right now.

These Dell Outlet deals are awesome. Last year, for $800, I bought a scratch & dent Precision T7500 workstation with two Nehalem Xeons and two 11krpm WD Velociraptor drives (160GB each). The thing is a monster and there wasn't even a cosmetic defect on it. 1100W power supply. The hulking case alone is probably worth a good $150 if not more.

Kashisti said:   ganjagadget said:   Kashisti, thank you for posting! A plex server is exactly the reason I setup a "desktop" alert on FW. Just curious, how many people are you supporting with your plex server? What OS do you plan to use an what is your ISP upload speed? TIA!

Right now I'm running our Plex server off of a dual-core Atom powered HP X310 StorageWorks headless box with 2GB of RAM (A FatWallet Black Friday purchase the year before last!). That's only good enough to feed two iPads with SD feeds simultaneously. We want to be able to do three iPads with SD feeds simultaneously, plus one Roku at 20mpbs 1080p. The Rokus are all hard-wired. From the research I did it sounds like a decent quad-core would meet that need.

We don't do a whole lot of streaming to clients while we're away from home but our Comcast connection is supposedly 25/50 Up/Down.

I'll be installing Windows Server 2012 on this new rig (well...Plex will be in a Hyper-V VM, but both the host and guest will have Server 2012). That dual-core Atom box is currently running 2012, as are my other three servers. One of those other three servers is my main file share, where I've got about 8TB of stuff shared out right now.


Just as another guide for Plex, I'm running Plex on Linux on a Athlon II X4 640 w/4 GB RAM. The most I have ever tested was 3 Roku's at 4 Mbps (720p), wired + 1 Android at around 1 MBps and it seemed to run fine with some room to spare.

In case anyone is wondering a ATI 1GB FirePro V4900 (Turks) is the pro equivalent of a Radeon HD 6670 480:24:8 (stream/text/rop).

Schmide said:   In case anyone is wondering a ATI 1GB FirePro V4900 (Turks) is the pro equivalent of a Radeon HD 6670 480:24:8 (stream/text/rop).


Thanks for this info. I like the precision line (I own 2 Precision laptops) and was considering buying a desktop. Can you pick one of these up without the vid card?

DUDSTER said:   Schmide said:   In case anyone is wondering a ATI 1GB FirePro V4900 (Turks) is the pro equivalent of a Radeon HD 6670 480:24:8 (stream/text/rop).


Thanks for this info. I like the precision line (I own 2 Precision laptops) and was considering buying a desktop. Can you pick one of these up without the vid card?


I don't think so. I only saw Xeon processors, which don't have integrated graphics. I think you'd have to get something.

Can I rip my blurays to this and use plex to play them on my tv?

umcsom said:   Can I rip my blurays to this and use plex to play them on my tv?


This is massive massive overkill for that, but sure.



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