Armari Magnetar X64T-G3 FWL review: Huge in every way
An absolutely monster workstation, with 3D rendering and video encoding both best in class
Armari is one of few manufacturers to supply a chassis that it designed itself, rather than taking something high quality off the shelf. This enclosure is intended specifically to get the most out of the 64-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3990X and comes with a 420mm radiator, plus a trio of 140mm Corsair fans. However, Armari has chosen to supply our sample with the 32-core AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3970X, rather than the 64-core monster.
This is most likely because the 3970X has a base clock of 3.7GHz, whereas the 3990X starts at 2.9GHz. Although the 3990X’s top Turbo mode is still an impressive 4.3GHz, the chip is more skewed towards dominance with multithreaded tasks than the all-round brilliance of the 3970X, so the latter makes more sense for a general-purpose workstation.
To accompany this CPU, Armari has only included 64GB of 3,600MHz DDR4 SDRAM, supplied as a quartet of 16GB DIMMs. We say “only”, but this should still be enough for virtually any current task, and there are four more slots free if you feel the need to upgrade.
Unlike Scan, Armari hasn’t opted for the all-conquering Nvidia Quadro RTX 6000 for graphics acceleration. Instead, it supplies the less powerful RTX 5000, but this is still a potent card. It sports 3,072 CUDA cores and 16GB of GDDR6 frame buffer, offering 448GB/sec of bandwidth, so it should make light work of every real-time 3D task, from modelling to CAD to scientific visualisation.
Armari supplies two identical 1TB Corsair PM600 M.2 NVMe SSDs. These are PCI Express 4 drives, and Armari has striped them together as RAID0 to further increase performance. You get the full 2TB in this configuration, and sustained throughput is virtually doubled to 8,944MB/sec when reading and 8,407MB/sec when writing.
You don’t get a hard disk for storing larger files, but Armari’s custom design pays dividends for expanding storage. There are four bays that can accommodate 3.5in or 2.5in drives, and you can optionally add four more for 2.5in drives only. The downside is this chassis’ sheer size, measuring more than 500mm deep and high. It’s also extremely heavy. Still, Armari installs helpful carry handles on the top to help move it.
One criticism is the lack of USB-C amongst the ports on the top of the chassis, although this is a removable module so we urge Armari to offer this (note the Type-C header on the ASRock TRX40 Creator motherboard). The board also sports not just 10Gbit Ethernet but 2.5Gbit, too, so you can have two fast LAN connections.
In our own benchmarks, this system was only slightly quicker than Armari’s cheaper 24-core offering, and notably behind Scan’s high-end system and Workstation Specialists’ submission. The overall result of 655 is still phenomenal, though, with excellent scores in every area, and the Magnetar sat top of the pile for purely processor-intensive tasks. The score of 18,388 in Maxon Cinebench R20 is the fastest by some margin, and the Blender Gooseberry CPU render completed in a table-topping 352 seconds. Its IndigoBench CPU scores were the highest, too. This is also the speediest system for Adobe Media Encoder CC 2020 video encoding.
The use of the RTX 5000 instead of the 6000 means that this system isn’t as fast in the SPECviewperf 13 viewsets as Scan’s high-end system. But it is the second fastest in most of them, with the notable exception of snx-03, where the Chillblast and Workstation Specialists high-end systems soared ahead. Still, a result of 452 is highly impressive.
Overall, this system epitomises what the third-generation AMD Ryzen Threadripper has to offer. It’s perfectly at home with modelling but when it comes to rendering out the results it absolutely flies. The custom chassis with its beefy cooling gets the best out of multithreaded tasks, making this a Recommended system for content creators who don’t want to trouble the machine room when it comes to rendering out their work.
Armari Magnetar X64T-G3 FWL specifications
3.7GHz AMD Ryzen Threadripper 3970X
ASRock TRX40 Creator
8 x RAM slots (4 free), 4 x PCIe x16 (3 free), 3 x M.2 (1 free), 8 x SATA 600 (8 free)
64GB DDR4, 3,600MHz
PNY Quadro RTX 5000, 16GB GDDR6
4 x DisplayPort 1.4, USB-C VirtualLink
Corsair MP600 1TB NVMe M.2 PCI Express 4.0
Corsair MP600 1TB NVMe M.2 PCI Express 4.0, N/A N/A
Armari Magnetar X100G3 P01 Pro (220 x 560 x 518mm)
PSU make and model (power output)
EVGA SuperNova G3 Gold Modular (1,300W)
Armari AWXG3TF 420mm watercooler
10 Gigabit Ethernet, 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet, 5 x 3.5mm audio jack, optical S/PDIF, 4 x USB 3.2 Gen 1, 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 2 (Type-A), USB 3.2 Gen 2 (Type-C), Wi-Fi, PS/2 mouse/keyboard combo
3.5mm audio jack, 3.5mm microphone jack, 3 x USB 3
Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
Warranty (parts & labour unless stated)
3yr (1yr on-site, 2yr RTB)
In This Article
- 1The best professional workstations for any budget
- 26 things to look for in a workstation
- 3Armari Magnetar X64T-G3 FWL review: Huge in every way - currently reading
- 4Chillblast Fusion Ryzen Render RTX 4000 review: Our top choice for under £3,000
- 5PC Specialist Onyx 994RG review: So long, Intel
- 6Scan 3XS GWP-ME Q132R review: The best all-round workstation
- 7Armari Gravistar TCX review: A lot of workstation for your money
- 8Chillblast Fusion Ripper Render RTX 5000 review: An absolute unit
- 9InterPro IPW-R9 review: Good system, shame about the SSD
- 10PC Specialist Onyx 880GE review: Intel shows its limitations
- 11Scan 3XS GWP-ME Q164T review: A superb system for GPU compute
- 12Workstation Specialists WS-1640A-G4 review: Good, but not great
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