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Old 05-06-2008, 06:10 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

We are an architectural firm who is in the process of boosting up our 3D visualization capabilities... We started doing 3D renderings about 2 years ago, and as our skills increase, so have our hardware needs.

We are exploring the idea of buying a machine with:

2 Quad Core Intel Xeon Processors (3.00Ghz,2x6M L2, 1333)
8 GB DDR2 SDRAM
512MB PCIe x16 nVidia Quadro FX 1700
80GB SATA, 7200 RPM Drive

The software we are/will be using is as follows:

Sketch-Up (& Vray for Sketchup)
Rhinoceros 4.0 (& Vray for Rhino)
Vue 6
3DS Max (Possibly)
Photoshop

The questions are:

1. Will this software utilize all 8 cores of this machine? (I've been told by asgvis that V-ray will use whatever is available)

2. Will the 7200 80gb drive bottleneck any of the other monstrous components? (We save everything on our server & our drives are not used all that much)

It might be worth noting that some of our models do get pretty demanding, especially when we do heavily detail landscapes... Rhino has been giving error messages saying that Windows is out of memory (we have one file that is 100mb worth of terrain geometry)

Any advice would be helpful. Thanks.
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Old 05-06-2008, 06:20 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

I recommend a HD with a lot of space but fast, try a 7200.11 Drive, or the 640gb Western Digital Drive...

otherwise you're good... thats good for a 3d rendering Rig/Workstation
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Old 05-06-2008, 06:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

1. I wouldnt even bother with an FX1700. Buy an ATI Firegl - better performance for about the same price:
Newegg.com - ATI 100-505512 FireGL V5600 512MB PCI Express x16 Workstation Video Card - Workstation Graphics / Video Cards

2. 8 cores may be overkill, but if you're doing a lot of rendering and FEA with rhino then it might be useful. I use solidworks all day and it will eat up 5gigs of memory loading a 2000+ part assembly.

3. If you are going to go with a build like that I would get a SAS harddrive. Most motherboards that would support dual-quad core processors have a built in SAS controller (saving a ton of money). You want as quick access times as possible when operating locally at your workstation. I assume you load it into a temp directory, work with whatever parts you need then check them into your server harddrives?

4. How much are you looking to spend? Are you opposed to building your own computers?
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Old 05-07-2008, 12:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

I don't know about Rhino, but 3DS will use all the cores you give to it for rendering. Also, you can set up node computers to add even more power.
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Old 05-07-2008, 09:50 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

As jumping bean says 3Ds max will use all cores for rendering. For example if using mental ray each core will show as a rendering bucket. To have more computers rendering, however, you will need more liscences which gets expensive.

Im not sure why rhino would give you that message (remeber it is not nearly as refined and bug free as 3ds max for example), however, with 8GB of ram you should have more than enough to run all of those programs at once.

Im an architecture student and i upgraded from a single core 1gb ram machine to the one below last year. Before i did i used to get low memory messages often when using large format files. Since i upgraded though, i havent had one.

Just remember with good renderers like vray and mental ray, the extra cores will make a huge difference to rendering. 8 cores is almost 8 times as fast as a single core for rendering.
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Old 05-07-2008, 11:11 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

Quote:
Originally Posted by meat_helmet View Post
As jumping bean says 3Ds max will use all cores for rendering. For example if using mental ray each core will show as a rendering bucket. To have more computers rendering, however, you will need more liscences which gets expensive.

Im not sure why rhino would give you that message (remeber it is not nearly as refined and bug free as 3ds max for example), however, with 8GB of ram you should have more than enough to run all of those programs at once.

Im an architecture student and i upgraded from a single core 1gb ram machine to the one below last year. Before i did i used to get low memory messages often when using large format files. Since i upgraded though, i havent had one.

Just remember with good renderers like vray and mental ray, the extra cores will make a huge difference to rendering. 8 cores is almost 8 times as fast as a single core for rendering.
he doesnt have an 8gig machine - he was saying with his current machine he gets low memory errors so he proposed that build. I dont know how Rhino handles large assemblies, but I'd imagine its similar to solidworks. And like I said solidworks will eat up 5 gigs of memory pretty easy.
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Old 05-07-2008, 02:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

I'm surprised you didn't mention flashing ATI Radeon Cards to be flashed to ATi FireGL Cards
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Old 05-07-2008, 02:56 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

Be careful with the 7200.11, almost all of them on newegg ship with bad firmware.

Why not get a Solid State Disk? That will be the fastest, and you don't really need the large storage capacity since you will save on a server. It is expensive, but if you want the fastest machine possible.....that would be one way to go.
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Old 05-07-2008, 02:58 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

ooh how about an SCSI 15k RPM Drive
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Old 05-07-2008, 07:33 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: 8 Cores w. 8 GB of RAM

Quote:
Originally Posted by dhgunit View Post
Be careful with the 7200.11, almost all of them on newegg ship with bad firmware.
they told me here that they fixed it
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