Gigabyte W771-Z00 Workstation Review

Gigabyte W771-Z00 Workstation Review

June 27, 2023 0 By Lorena Mejia

The Gigabyte W771-Z00 Workstation ranks right up there with the highest performing off-the-shelf workstations available (SHOP HERE). It supports a single AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5000WX or 3000WX processor with up to 64 cores, PCIe 4.0, up to 2TB of memory, 8x SAS/SATA storage bays, and up to 4x GPUs.

With support for Windows 10 or 11, or Red Hat Enterprise Linux this unit truly can be used as a personal workstation. It is a large tower but if you want the power, it’s not coming in a breadbox, at least not yet. With an AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO processor this system can have anywhere from 8x to 64x cores and 16 to 128 virtual threads depending on your choice for workloads. This system can also be rack mounted for network accessibility but who would want to share!? This system is designed for creating complex visual effects or rendering but is also a great platform for engineering and data science applications, oil and gas exploration, AI, AI inference, and your, in general, high-performance computing applications.  

It has a locking bezel for security but once we pop the cover off this system, you can see a solid layout with clear sectors for the storage, fans, motherboard with CPU and memory modules and those 6x PCIe 4.0 x16 slots plus one x8 slot with a x16 physical slot length. With PCIe 4.0 you get twice the bandwidth compared to PCIe 3.0. More specifically with a x4 PCIe 3.0 slot maximum bandwidth would be about 4GB per second. With PCIe 4.0 a x4 PCIe lane will provide transfer rates of 8GB per second instead of just a paltry 4GB per second with PCIe 3.0. This system will accept up to 4x Nvidia or AMD double wide cards. Of course, if you do add in 4x double-wide cards no more PCIe options left because they will cover the other open slots.  

There are only 3x GPUs listed on the Qualified vendor list including the Nvidia RTX A6000 with 48GB VRAM and a 300W power draw, plus AMDs W6600 and W5200 GPUs with 8GB VRAM at 130W and 205w, respectively. The RTX A6000 consumes 300W and does support Nvidia NVLink allowing you to link 2x GPUs together to act as a single GPU. We assume the limit on 4x GPUs is at 300W per GPU. Pretty sure you can add a number of GPU alternatives from both Nvidia and AMD should you desire. Really kind of depends on your workload. Let’s not forget the new Ada Lovelace architecture for the latest generation, which we’re sure can also find a home on this platform. 

We’re specifically talking about the Nvidia RTX 6000 Ada Generation GPU, the successor to the RTX A6000. It combines third generation RT cores, fourth generation Tensor cores and next-gen CUDA cores with 48GB of GDDR6 graphics memory. According to Nvidia, the RTX 6000 Ada Generation offers twice the performance of the RTX A6000 but still only consumes 300W and, as you would expect uses a PCIe 4.0 bus.  

Featuring the AMD WRX80 chipset, the Gigabyte W771-Z00 Workstation will take either the first-generation AMD Ryzen Threadripper Pro 3000 WX-Series or the 2nd iteration of the Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5000 WX Series processors with a thermal design power rating of 280W. Both provide up to 64 cores of performance, 128 PCIe 4.0 lanes, 8-memory channel architecture and high base-clock frequencies. The PRO 5000 WX-Series takes it a step further with Zen 3 micro-architecture. Apparently, it’s better at single-threaded and multi-threaded applications, like 8k video production, machine, learning, and AI applications.

Of course, you still get the incredible performance for CAD, rendering, and development, for artists, architects, engineers and others, so no worries there. The infinity fabric, which is the basis for both processors has been made even better with Zen 3 and improvement to the interconnects between the chiplets, plus more efficient L3 Cache. AMD has improved performance and attained the highest sustained clock rates in the industry. In the interest of brevity, they’re not just good—They’re great! And that’s regardless of which generation you use. Superb performance for a single processor system or even a two-processor system. 

To either side of the CPU socket are 4x DDR4 DIMM slots, for 8x slots total. The system supports unbuffered, registered, or Load-Reduced DIMMs. Plus, the 3DS varieties. With the CPUs supporting 8x memory channels, each DIMM resides in its own channel for optimal bandwidth. Depending on your choice of memory modules, the system supports memory speeds from 2100MHz all the way to 3200MHz. Memory capacity is capped at 2TB with all slots loaded with 256GB LRDIMMs. That by the way is also the cap for the WRX80 chipset, which you may have noticed from the specifications for the chipset also indicates 152 PCIe 4.0 lanes. Perhaps an indication of things to come?

The Gigabyte W771-Z00 Workstation has 4x 3.5-inch storage bays standard equipment but that can be upgraded with another drive cage on the lower portion of the chassis. All bays support SATA III natively but it will support SAS drives with the addition of a discrete SAS controller. The system features integrated RAID support with options for 0, 1, 5, or RAID 10 but if you need other RAID options or SAS, you can install a discrete HD RAID controller. In addition, there is a space reserved at the top of the chassis for an optical disk drive. 

You also have a number of boot options for this system, but we’d just boot off M.2 drives because they are crazy fast! The motherboard has two x4 PCIe 4.0 slots on the system board for 2x M.2 NVMe or SATA drives. There is also an M.2 slot specifically for WiFi supporting an NGF-2230 card and there are two antennas, or if this was a bug, antennae which you can add for better WiFi reception, when you’re draining bandwidth off your neighbors WiFi connection. Kidding…

2x 80 plus Platinum 2000W power supply units provide dual redundancy and enable this system to easily transition to enterprise as a virtual graphics workstation. Add an optional rack rail kit and you can place it in a standard 42U rack. There are a lot of ports on the back of this system and the front for that matter but as a top-of-the-line system would you expect anything less. There is a VGA port for an old school monitor, ID button in case you rack mount this system, 2x USB 3.2 Gen2 – one type A and one type C. an RJ45 GbE LAN port, a Management MLAN port, 4x more USB 3.2 Gen2 type A ports, plus 2x 10GbE LAN ports, and a 3 in 1 Audio jack and a power switch with LED. Lastly, all of those PCIe slot covers. Optionally, you can install two more fans on the back for GPU cooling if you max out on those cards. Still, with 2x 10GbE ports in back, you still have a respectable network connection if you did decide to use 4x GPUs and weren’t able to install a faster network controller card.

Moving onto the front of the Gigabyte W771-Z00 Workstation, more ports. Once we get past the honeycomb locking bezel, there are 2x USB 3.0 ports, power button, reset button Plus a bunch of status LEDs for power hard drives, systems status a unit ID LED, and 2x LAN activity LEDs. Below those, the 3.5-inch drive bays which can be outfitted with 2.5-inch drives as well. 

So, there you have it, the Gigabyte W771-Z00 workstation tower, which is a reasonable name for this unit too. Not too long. Not too short. This definitely gives the other guys something to think about with the range of features supported on this system. It also addresses the same user segments as other off-the shelf workstations but uses AMDs super-duper Ryzen Threadripper PRO 3000WX and Ryzen Threadripper PRO 5000WX processors for more cores and processing power in a single socket system. This is really quite a cool unit. 

If you are looking for one of these or just testing the waters, check out IT Creations. We have all the cool toys for your computing needs and at a great price, including GPUs, CPUs, storage, memory and anything else you might need!