advanced rendering for AutoCAD
Hi guys. I am thinking about buying a new machine. Then the following question. More cores or more RAM?. Now I have a core -quad with 4 gb of RAM. The main problem is that this CPU do not allow more RAM so that is why I am thinking about a new machine.
of course more more more cores! and 16 g ram is too enough
I've had good experiences with Opteron-based XI Computers. 16 core machines are now going for well under $3000. No idea if these guys do business internationally.
I don't know if you're aware of the difference between a 32bit and 64 bit Operating System.
Just in case, please keep in mind that you can only make use of more than 3.5 GB of RAM in 64bit Systems and, of course, if the motherboard allows it.
Personally, I never buy pre-assembled computers. But, if I had to, I'd go with medium-sized companies like the one Roy recommended. I wouldn't go with the big companies because they gouge prices heavily when it comes to "custom" components. For example, memory modules run as high as 3X when you simply add it to your options in the shopping cart.
On a side note, you're free to buy anything you like but I strongly recommend not to buy any specialized or "workstation class" video card. Get an NVIDIA GeForce card because it has something called CUDA cores which are becoming more popular and enabled by more software. Keep in mind that it is the CPU and Memory what handles the rendering. You might have a sub-par graphics card and still be able to render fast.
What the Graphics Card does is it allows you to see and work on bigger and more complex models in any software. This means that your 3D visualization while working/editing the models in AutoCad, for example, will be more fluid and free from stuttering while being less susceptible to crashes or sudden hangs.
To have a stable workflow, I use Non-overclocked Video Card with 2GB of memory. This has helped me lots.
I have had my share of deception by the Video Card Industry and it's "workstation class" gimmick. My conclusion after wasting money is, they do work wonders, but that happens when it becomes the most expensive component in your office. (including the computer itself). Anything below that, is a waste of time and money. So, a good non-overclocked Video Card will do.
I currently have a very good system for $2600USD. It has way more than what I have needed.
I like Quadro cards for their stability and the ACAD performance drivers, but I never buy the latest, greatest or up-to-datest ones. These cards seem to have zero resale value on eBay, probably because they have terrible gaming performance, and i can usually pick up $1200 Quadros from a couple of years ago for under $100 if I'm patient.
Basically, the answer is "yes." :)
Get more cores, a 64bit OS and more RAM.
More Cores are better of course but what everyone seems to perhaps forget is more cores potentially means a better and well air conditioned location for your PC because those things produce so much heat that the built fans are usually not enough.
Also when rendering on a 8 Core or 6 Core machine, I sometimes disable a CPU or 2 so it doesn't run on extremities and make the motherboard go bust.
We've had that happen to one of the Super D*ll machines which cost around 9K with 16Gb RAM and 8 CPUs. The sneaky D*ll reps wasted time in getting spare parts and replacements from CA so they could get past the warranty period!
In cold countries it would be awesome to have those machines next to your feet because when u hit render, a nice warm draft of air rises from below the table! :D
It's an interesting point. Machines have to be designed properly. The XI I've got with 12 AMD Operteron cores has run all day and all night for a week straight without any ill effects. All of the processors were pegged virtually the entire time. The fans on the case are huge and quiet (and slow).
OTOH, I could routinely crash an expensive HP dual core laptop by rendering on it and overheating it (can't do it with my cheap HP.)
This heat issue is directly related to the CPU's power consumption.
My POV is that before buying a computer you will actually work on (therefore, derive part or full income), there are some guidelines and hindered elements to consider:
-How fast you really need to go? There are fast CPU's which virtually never overheat and are free from "dangerous" features, like the the Intel Xeon E3-1240 Sandy Bridge. It requires a specific type of Motherboard, but it doesn't have integrated graphics (which you don't need for the job), it's 80watt and provides near i2600 performance. Point is, anything faster than that which you really need, could and should be cloud processed in the very near future. Keep in mind cloud processing will be so widely available, that eventually you may end up doing it for free at certain scale.
-Do you have an IT degree? This is not a funny question. My experience on graphic design and architectural presentations has led to a quite steep learning curve parallel to software standards and constant forced actualization (coughem! Autodeugh! Ribbonughmm! cough!). And it's this knowledge what I need to find out what's going on within the hardware and how to deal with it. Most people can easily get scammed just by lack of updated info here. I learned that way!
-Are you willing to play safe? Backup of backup's backup is what you end up doing after a couple awful crashes or HDD failures. Knowledge and experience here never seem to be enough when it comes to preserve not only your data, but your workflow. You may backup files and such, but it doesn't mean it will restore your functionality quickly. If you really want to play safe, specialty (not necessarily expensive) equipment is needed.
-Yes, environment! I live in a dusty, desert, high humidity playground. And is hot!, computers hate this place. With the utilities bills raising by the month, I have to take good care of temperature and dust control without installing a doubled BTU air conditioner. In the end, with the availability of all in one sealed liquid cooling systems for the CPU, I finally went with it and can't be happier. It's just an example of how important environment is.
It is true that speed is important, but also, efficiency at work is. A gaming computer setup (like the one I have) will perfectly do the job and handle pretty much anything you throw at it, but there is the far side of collateral damage chances which no one wishes to take. I fit my computer with less possible components, which not only minimizes the chances of failure but also makes it easier to identify problems. Nothing is overclocked or forced if I'm not presently monitoring, I clean it every month, do my backups, often create images of main drive and operating system, and learn every day a bit more about my tools for the job.
Too much Ugo. I've heard of very few machines which have actually had heat problems handling extended renderings. All of those have been laptops.