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ASUS TS700-E8-RS8 Barebones Workstation Review

By: William Harmon | Servers in IT/Datacenter | Posted: Apr 22, 2015 2:07 pm
TweakTown Rating: 97%Manufacturer: ASUS

Power Consumption

 

We have upgraded our power testing equipment and now use a Yokogawa WT310 power meter for testing. The Yokogawa WT310 feeds its data through a USB cable to another machine where we can capture the test results.

 

To test total system power use, we used AIDA64 Stability test to load the CPU, and then recorded the results. We also now add in the power use for a server from off state to hitting the power button to turn it on and take it all the way to the desktop. This gives us data on power consumption during the boot up process.

 

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The ASUS TS700-E8-RS8 Workstation peaks out at close to 540 watts when put under full load, which is about average for systems like this. Idle power use is in the range of ~120 watts which is a bit high. Overclocking the system adds ~50 watts of power used during our tests and on idle the system settles down to about the same vs a stock setup.

 

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Booting up the ASUS TS700-E8-RS8 Workstation peaks out at ~370 watts then quickly settles down to ~120 watts sitting on the desktop. There is not much difference here between a stock and overclocked system. Dual CPU systems do take a little longer to boot up vs a single socket system, the ASUS TS700-E8-RS8 Workstation takes ~146 seconds to complete the boot up with what we have equipped.

 

 

Final Thoughts

 

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Over time, we have built a large number of workstations here in the lab and one thing we like is barebones kits. These kits save us a lot of time figuring out what motherboards fit what cases and all the other extra components that you might want to add to outfit your workstation.

 

One of the first things that we take into consideration is what the case looks like. Does it provide the storage bay options that we are looking for, and does it include power supplies. Looks are a matter of personal taste, but the TS700-E8-RS8 certainly looks stylish with the silver trim. Eight drive bays in the front of the case are rather typical these days, but the additional 2.5" bays in the back we really like. You can install two SSDs here and RAID 0 them together for fast OS installs and not use any of the front bays for this. The dual redundant power supplies are server rated so they should last a good long time. The length of the case is right in that sweet spot at 21.75", not too long to have it hang over the edge of your desk and short enough to provide enough space in the back for cables. It could actually be a little longer to provide a little more space inside the case for installing components.

 

The Z10PE-D16 WS motherboard is an excellent choice for this workstation, performance is high, and it has plenty of storage options. This board is very much like the ASUS Z10PE-D8 WS motherboard that we reviewed earlier. To be able to install a full 16 DIMM's, a PCIe slot had to be left out on the D16. Additional server features were added also such as IPMI, but there is no iKVM on this board. That would have been a nice feature to give you the ability to remotely run workstation farms. You can do this with several different expansion cards though.

 

Our first thought when we saw the included heat sinks was these are not going to work good enough and would need to be replaced. We were very happy to see that they did perform very well with our CPUs running heavy loads for extended periods. We saw no throttling and temperatures were reasonable, so there is no need to toss these out and spend more dollars on additional heat sinks.

 

We found cable management with the supplied kit to be sort of a mess, but on the plus side, all drives were connected, which saves a lot of work. Cables that used to connect the media bays are conveniently placed; no extra fuss was needed for these. Most of the cables were nicely secured around the drive bay backplane, but this brings us to the main problem with this kit. The location of the CPU fan headers are in rather hard to reach locations. In order to reach the header at the front of the case, we had to cut the cable ties on the backplane to be able to get our fingers in this tight area. We finally ended up using needle nose pliers and a flashlight to secure it. We also had similar issues with installing the CPU fan header at the back of the case.

 

Once we had everything installed, we found the ASUS TS700-E8-RS8 Workstation to be a very powerful machine with benchmarks taking the number one spot in many cases. Cooling fans inside the case do not make a lot of noise and do a very good job of keeping everything nice and cool inside. The ASUS TS700-E8-RS8 Workstation Barebones kit is hard to beat; you get everything you need to get this workstation up and running quickly.

Product Summary Breakdown

TweakTown award
Performance98%
Quality including Design and Build95%
General Features95%
Bundle and Packaging97%
Value for Money99%
Overall TweakTown Rating97%

The Bottom Line: ASUS' TS700-E8-RS8 Workstation Barebones kit provides everything you need to get your workstation up and running and includes the highest performing motherboard we have tested yet.

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