HP z620 and Fancy GPUs

So. Had to upgrade a HP Z620 workstation at work lately to get a 1070 board to fit to do some ML work soonish.

A few things I noticed because I was not the only one googling like mad about it:

1) does it have enough power? 2) does it have enough room 3) what cable is required?

  1. Yes, the native power supply has like almost 700W so more than enough for puny 1070 power requirement which is less than 200W.
  2. BARELY. I originally had the old Quadro card further up and had to trade spot with the 1070. Keep in mind you will need to remove a few things.  Move the original GPU to lower spot or else the 1070 literally won’t have enough breathing room (as in, it will try to suck air from the bottom metal plate which… will most likely cause issues and prevent heat dissipation (unless you use the case to vent heat via conduction? which would be kind of cool yet hot I guess? (Don’t use the black slot shown here for 1070 or any recent large size card…). YOU MUST REMOVE a metal spacer from the chassis cover in order to fit 1070 though as the card is TOO wide. Luckily, Z620 had designed the chassis with that in mind. Lastly, if you have DUAL CPU slots you might have issues. I don’t have that but from what I can tell, I think my card will block way for that as well.
  3. So 1070 has a ePCI 8 pin hole power cable. I tried to put the spare G0 / G1 cable which are normally plugged into the plastic frame  dicking around there, into 1070, but it won’t work and give you this: Which is kind of funny because if you found this post, you must have read other HP forum post bragging about the ePCI 5 pin cables are magical and has special properties and can support up to 225W GPU etc. They were right. BUT, you need to convert the 5pin (six pin with one empty) to a regular 8 pins for the GPU, and it will boot fine. So the answer is: if you want to use a GPU, get at least a 6 pin to 8pins converter or else it will not work for Z620. Directly plugging into the 6 pins into 8 pins holes on the graphics card will NOT WORK. The adapter cable does not have to come from HP or anywhere special, I bought it from a regular store.

Enjoy your new z620 with beefed up GPU card.

PS: for those who think this rig can handle SAS drives, think again and think very carefully. I bought tons of SAS drives and in the end have to return them because apparently my configuration at manufacturing at least did not support SAS drive unless I originally opted for an upgrade at the purchase time.