• PCIe lanes

    How to optimise your CPU choice to maximize your PCIe lanes

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    The number of PCIe lanes you can harness has the potential to open up valuable expansion opportunities in a Rack PC. We work hard to ensure our customers maximise on the PCIe lane options available to them when choosing from Intel’s line-up of CPUs. Importantly, the number of PCIe lanes on offer varies across Intel’s broad spectrum of processors, so the challenge comes with finding the right fit for your requirements.

    Performance meets capacity

    Generally speaking, Intel’s standard Desktop i3, i5, and i7 CPUs offer a maximum of 16 PCIe lanes, plus the chipset. While this is more than suitable for many of our customers who don’t have a need for any additional capacity, it can put restrictions on those looking for greater expandability and flexibility from their PCs. A single graphics card can, for example, need 16 lanes by itself, and therefore seriously limit the scope for building on the unit’s performance.

    Intel’s Desktop i9 processors, however, offer up to 44 PCIe lanes. This provides a substantial 175% increase in PCIe capacity over the usual processor options, making it ideal for customers seeking to accommodate multiple graphics cards within a single unit. Performance can therefore easily be optimised, and for the price of the i9 chip, we believe the investment is readily rewarded by the performance output achieved.

    Performance not a priority?

    If performance isn’t a necessity, but capacity is, then there isn’t really a Desktop equivalent that fits the bill. But if you’re working with Workstation and Server grade systems, or are simply seeking a low-power Intel CPU that maintains a high number of PCIe lanes, we’d recommend the new Xeon W-Series of CPUs. Even the entry-level processors in this series, such as the W-2125, offer 48 PCIe lanes.

    The Xeon W chips are only compatible with Intel’s C422 chipset motherboard, but considering the sheer number of PCIe slots available for use, we can understand why such a high-quality board is a necessity.

    We’re ready and raring to advise our customers how to get the very best out of your Intel processors and their PCIe lanes. If you’re looking for the perfect mix of performance and capacity from your PCIe lanes but don’t know where to start, give us a call and we’ll match you with a PC solution that more than suits your needs.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: Technical Articles

  • ISE Register

    Guests of G2 get free entry at ISE 2019

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    Integrated Systems Europe 2019 is fast approaching, and we’re making some significant headway with our plans for the world’s largest AV systems integration show. We’ll be exhibiting among some of the biggest names in AV and digital media at the RAI in Amsterdam from 5th – 8th February, stationed within the newly extended Audio & Live Events Technology Hall at Stand W114. We’ve got a load of exciting stuff to look forward to both at the show itself and in the lead-up to the main event, from awesome competitions to 1-2-1 product demos where you can take a closer peek at what makes our PCs tick.

    Importantly, our exhibitor status means that any customers that register as a G2 guest get free entry!

    Registration is open!

    Registration for ISE opened earlier today, so there’s no better time than the present to book your spot. This news is even better if you’re a G2 Digital customer or partner – as we’re exhibiting, you have the opportunity to attend the event without paying any entry fees! All you’ll need to do is get in touch with us; we’ll then issue a unique code that you can use when you register to ensure your entry is absolutely free. It’s that simple. Over 80,000 people attended last year, with an even greater number expected in 2019, so make sure you’re one of them!

    Why visit ISE 2019?

    ISE is an event not to be missed. It offers a brilliant opportunity to better understand what’s hot in the world of AV and digital media, see the latest innovation first-hand, and network with our thriving community.

    If you’re interested in attending ISE 2019 and would like to register for free as a G2 guest, speak to one of the team to find out more.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News

  • Intel E-series CPU

    New Xeon E-Series chip from Intel available in our PCs

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    While we’ve recently introduced members of AMD’s Ryzen family of CPUs into our Rack and Mini PCs, this doesn’t in any way mean that Intel has been taking a backseat. In fact, we’ve been keeping a close eye on Intel’s latest releases; most notably their new Coffee Lake Xeon E-2100 series of processors. We’re pleased to reveal that these are now available across our 2U and 4U units, and more recently, our 1U Plus.

    Announced back in July, this range of CPUs has been crafted specifically for creative professionals, which is why we think it’s a perfect fit for AV and digital media. The chips promise powerful single-threaded performance, advanced reliability and security, higher max turbo frequency, and much more.

    Meet the E-2100 family

    The new Xeon E-series chip line-up consists of 10 CPUs in total, from the lower spec E-2124, a 4-core, 4-thread CPU with a base clock of 3.3GHz and boost of 4.3GHz, to the range-topping E-2186G, which boasts 6 cores and 12 threads and a boost clock of 4.7GHz from a base of 3.8GHz. The ‘G’ of the latter CPU denotes the fact that this chip also supports Intel UHD graphics, which its lower spec sibling does not. Thermal Design Power (TDP) also ranges from 71W to 95W throughout the series.

    Overall, the Coffee Lake Xeon E-2100 series has a lot to offer:

    • Up to 6 cores/12 threads
    • Up to 4.7GHz using Turbo Boost Technology 2.0
    • Error Correcting Code (ECC) memory
    • Up to 64GB DDR4
    • Up to 40 PCIe lanes
    • Support for USB 3.1 and Thunderbolt
    • Support for Intel Optane memory
    • Hardware-enhanced security with Intel vPro

    Compatibility with Intel C-based chipsets

    Another huge benefit of the E-2100 series is that the Xeon processors are compatible with Intel’s C246 chipset. This wasn’t previously possible, as only Intel’s 8th gen i3, i5, and i7 CPUs were compatible, however both can helpfully now be used with the chipset.

    We’re really excited about the Xeon E-series, and will be introducing this into more of our PCs soon. If you would like to find out more about Intel’s E-2100 chips and how you can get your hands on one in a G2 PC, please contact us.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • 4U Nano Redundant PSU

    Redundant PSU latest addition to expandable 4U Nano

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    We’re pleased to officially reveal that our highly expandable 4U Nano rackmount PC has recently received an exciting upgrade to its design. Following on from the modifications we made to our popular 2U Nano of late, its larger 4U cousin is now also the recipient of a brand-new redundant power supply unit (PSU). The introduction of this optional PSU complements the 4U Nano’s already powerful, high-performing configuration, adding to its existing high output 1500W ATX power supply and augmenting its line-up of impressive features.

    Plenty of power

    Thanks to this new upgrade, the 4U Nano is now more optimised than ever for power and performance. Our first 4U unit, it was built with AV and digital media production in mind, and its clever design only reflects this:

    • 370mm ultra-short-depth chassis
    • Dual Xeon processor options
    • Support for up to 4x dual-width graphics cards
    • High output 1500W ATX PSU
    • 4x 3.5” or 8x 2.5” hot swappable HDD/SSDs

    A PC for professionals

    With dual processor options for Intel’s range-topping Xeon chips and room for multiple dual-width graphics cards, this is a machine that’s primed for performance. Like the 2U Nano, due to its short-depth case and ultra-quiet cooling fans, the 4U Nano is an ideal PC for AV professionals. The addition of a redundant PSU offers added resilience, providing users with reassurance that should their main power supply fail during a show or production, the redundant unit will simply take over as if nothing had happened.

    We’re always making changes to our line-up of Rack and Mini PCs to ensure that we’re providing our customers with innovative, reliable technology that addresses their challenges and lives up to their expectations. We listen to your needs and do whatever we can to create solutions to meet those requirements.

    If you would like to find out more about what a redundant power supply means for the 4U Nano, or else learn about the PC itself and whether it’s right for you, get in touch with one of the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • 2U Nano Redundant PSU

    Our 2U Nano gets a redundant power supply upgrade

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    We can think of plenty of reasons why the 2U Nano rackmount PC is consistently one of our most popular products. It’s an exceptionally high-performing PC, with support for Intel’s 8th generation of impressive CPUs; is ultra-quiet, thanks to internal rubber-mounted cooling fans; and boasts an exceedingly compact mounting depth at 370mm, making it ideal for space-sensitive AV installations or transport within a flight case.

    All of these features aside, we always aim to refresh and refine every one of our products as often as we can, ensuring that our customers are getting the most from their investment in our PCs. The 2U Nano is no exception. Already a feature-rich machine, with power supply options that extend up to 650W, we’ve recently decided to also add a redundant power supply unit (PSU) to the 2U Nano’s design. This means that should your PC’s main power supply ever fail during an AV show or digital media production, you get peace of mind from knowing the 2U Nano has a contingency. The 800W redundant PSU will simply take over the workload, and you can continue working without disruption as if nothing has changed.

    The addition of a redundant power supply enhances what is already a long list of exciting capabilities and important functionality offered by the 2U Nano:

    • Up to 650W standard power supply
    • Redundant 800W power supply
    • 2x 3.5” or 4x 2.5” hot swappable HDD/SSD bays
    • Full ATX motherboard support
    • Up to 4x PCIe x16 slots
    • Ultra-low noise, from only 34dBA

    We believe that introducing a redundant PSU to the 2U Nano adds further value to the PC, building important redundancy into a machine that is increasingly being used in critical environments where this peace of mind is vital.  As with the same changes we recently made to our 2U PC, this comes as a response to customer requirements and the demands of real-world application of our technology.

    If you would like to learn more about our 2U Nano and why a redundant power supply could benefit you, please get in touch with one of the team.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • 1U Plus Ryzen

    AMD’s Ryzen: a big plus for our 1U Plus

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    There’s no denying that AMD’s Ryzen family of CPUs is becoming more widely sought after, not only among AV and digital media professionals, but across a whole host of different industries that are beginning to realise the many advantages of these powerful and innovative processors. We’ve seen the demand grow from our own customers, largely driven by the fact that Ryzen is a fantastic option for 3D and real-time rendering.

    Understanding the key benefits made possible by Ryzen, such as speed, power efficiency, and cost-effectiveness, we recently decided to introduce the AMD chips into our product line-up, starting with our 1U PC. We mentioned back in May that support for Ryzen would soon extend across the remainder of our units and can now announce that AMD Ryzen 7 processors are available within our 2U PC, 2U Nano, 4U Nano, and 1U Plus PCs.

    Why is the 1U Plus so important?

    We have noticed a trend among our customers in the requirement for Ryzen CPU support, which has seen more of a lean towards 1U machines. Because we want to be able to give our customers as much flexibility and choice as we possibly can, we have ensured that two of our most popular 1U units have Ryzen 7 compatibility – the 1U PC and 1U Plus. This means the chips aren’t limited to a single set of 1U specifications, but users can instead enjoy the versatility of two very different 1U machines. These both now offer support for the Ryzen 7 1800X, an 8-core and 16-thread CPU with a base clock of 3.6GHz and boost of 4GHz.

    The 2U Nano takes on Threadripper

    While Ryzen 7 has proven to be extremely popular, we’ve also now introduced AMD’s flagship Ryzen Threadripper, the 1950X, to the RT95X model of our 2U Nano. The CPU has twice the amount of cores than its cousin, and promises very impressive performance indeed. We can’t wait to see what this beast of a chip can do.

    We’re big fans of Ryzen, so if you would like to know more about AMD’s game-changing processors and how you can get your hands on one in a G2 PC, talk to us.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products

  • AV Awards 2018 Finalist 2U Nano

    2U Nano is an AV Awards Finalist!

    Updated , by Geoff Undrell

    We’re delighted to officially announce that our 2U Nano rackmount PC has qualified as a finalist for the AV Awards’ Production Product of the Year! This is fantastic news for G2, and we’re very hopeful that the PC is a strong enough candidate to see us through to the win. The nomination is a testament to our belief that the 2U Nano is a stand-out product, and we’re thrilled it’s been recognised as such by industry experts. Putting the unit forward for the award was a simple choice for us – we’re really proud of what the product is capable of, particularly because it’s proving such a popular machine among AV and digital media professionals.

    Why we think it’s been shortlisted

    A highly flexible, powerful, yet affordable unit, the 2U Nano is perfect for running a wide variety of key applications such as vMix, grandMA, and real-time rendering software, Notch. The ruggedised PC is incredibly compact at only 370mm deep, making it ideal for space-sensitive production environments and travel within a flight case. To add to its suitability for AV and digital media, the machine can also be configured to run almost silently at 34dBA thanks to rubber-mounted cooling fans and a specially chosen ultra-low-noise power supply, minimising disruption during shows. The 2U Nano doesn’t shy away when it comes to performance, either, built to support a wide range of CPUs that extend all the way up to the latest generation of Intel and AMD chips. It’s an extremely versatile machine, too – offering multiple slots and bays that enable our customers to harness powerful graphics cards, different storage options, and much more.

    The innovation doesn’t end there

    If all of its existing features weren’t enough, we’ve also recently added a redundant power supply unit (PSU) to the 2U Nano’s design. This gives our customers the reassurance that should the PC’s main power supply ever fail during a critical task or media production, the 800W redundant PSU can instantly take over the workload without interruption. Keep an eye out for our next blog on this for more details.

    Wish us luck!

    Our 2U Nano achieves what many media servers cannot – high-performance and power in a small form factor. That’s why we think it makes such a great contender for the Production Product of the Year – it directly addresses the needs and challenges of the AV industry. We’re very excited to learn the outcome of the judges’ final decisions at the AV Awards this September and look forward to seeing how the 2U Nano measures up. Keep your fingers crossed for us until then!

    Learn more about the AV Awards and our 2U Nano rackmount PC by getting in touch.

    Posted by: Geoff Undrell
    Posted in: News, Products