15 Replies Latest reply on Apr 28, 2016 1:49 PM by Aaron Lehnhardt

    HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer

    Brandon Frank

      I have been allowed to spend 4k for two computers or laptops AND monitors that will be used to render some of our companies products into videos for visualize. The people using the machines will be rendering videos of around 100 different products. What can I expect performance wise for 2k per rig? I don't want to purchase these devices just to have them not be good enough. The people using visualize are planning on queuing up their work and rendering over night and on the weekends.  In this posting, it was taking a K1100M an hour and 15 minutes to render a photo of a camaro, I am imagining it taking a whole heck of a lot longer for video can one render be done over night with a K1100M is video realistic? SOLIDWORKS Visualize - Graphics performance NVIDIA Quadro 


      This is kind of what I've been looking at Amazon.com: $1,000-$1,500 - NVIDIA Quadro / Desktops / Computers & Tablets: Electronics



      It's going to be my butt if we spend 4k, which I had to fight for and can't get anything done. I don't believe that this will be near enough computing power but hopefully I am wrong.


      THANKS !!

        • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
          Wojciech Paterski

          does it have to be workstation - or can you buy components and put them together?

          • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
            Alex Cotterill-Drew

            Have you looked at Keyshot?


            Concentrating on a graphics card for the render side is not going to be economical in your situation,


            I would recommend looking into Keyshot as your rendering client and maybe get a trial of Keyshot Network Render so that you can use the CPU power of any computer connected to a network that you are able to install the client into,


            Network Rendering - KeyShot


            Regards, Alex

            • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
              Brian Hillner

              Hi Brandon,


              Great question and hopefully more users will chime in with their Visualize hardware suggestions based off their own experiences (thanks Wojciech!).


              Visualize only uses NVIDIA graphics cards for GPU-acceleration, by the way. So no AMD purchase.


              You will thank yourself for putting as much budget as possible into the NVIDIA GPU. It will be a good investment, and will actually save the company money in the long run, since entry level GPUs need to be replaced every couple years or so. The higher class cards can go to even 6 years before they become obsolete.


              As the article you linked to suggests, I recommend the NVIDIA Quadro 4000. Any other users have any suggestions?




              • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                Rob Rodríguez

                I would personally just spend the $4K on one system and purchase the best GPU and fastest quad core CPU you can with that money.


                Animations require a lot of time to process.  I have 2 high end (in excess of $10K) systems here and I'm still waiting 3-4 days to process out animations that are 10-30 seconds in length.  There really are no shortcuts.  Processing power (GPU or CPU or both) is king and typically that power costs $.

                  • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                    Brandon Frank

                    Thank you everyone so far for your input. I hope to gather many data points.

                    • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                      Anton Miller

                      I'm with you on this Rob.  I would buy one big machine and have them set up/model on a different machine and run the actual renders on the remote machine that has the horse power.


                      Again keeping in mind most screens are around 150$ each...  using a remote machine would be even more cost effective because you will be saving money on the screens.


                      With that said our standard Lenovo machines we use are around 2500-3000 each.  that's just for a Xeon machine with 16 gig of ram and a quadro 4000.


                      Also my home workstation I have about 1000$ into and it has an I7, 32 gig ram, a 4 gig card (not solidworks approved).  so if you build a machine like recommended above you can get much more bang for your buck.  but you will lose the support side of a warranty for a fully built machine.

                      • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                        Alan Sweetenham

                        What graphics cards have you got in those systems Rob? I was able to process a 10 second animation in a reasonable 12-16 hours at 25FPS and  1920x1080 even on a K2200 and quad core CPU. I guess the geometry complexity, ammount of movement etc makes a difference makes a difference but 3-4 days does sound high.



                      • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                        Alan Sweetenham

                        Hi Brandon, those specs on Amazon aren't particularly good value for money, a lot of old hardware on there and not the best bang for buck.


                        From my own testing the CPU makes little difference for Visualize so i would just stick with a fast quad core for SOLIDWORKS use. I would concur with Brian the Quadro M4000 is the best balance at the moment having compared the Quadro K2200 with it.


                        The testing on the SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog  also showed that that the Quadro M4000 was the best bang for buck, some things to consider about those tests are that the desktop had 24 CPU cores which isn't typical and they didn't test the latest gen Mobile Cards or compare between generations of Graphics card. If you can't stretch to the M4000 then there is a new M2000 graphics card coming out in the next few weeks to replace the K2200


                        The latest Maxwell cards outperform the previous gen cards significantly. I have only compared mobile card generation so far but i found the new M3000M is as much as twice as fast as the K3100m. I also i monitored memory when doing some animations i was in the 2-3.5GB range for fairly simple models, so a 4GB card may not be enough if you geometry is complex as the amount of graphics card memory dictates the size/ complexity of the scene you can render.


                        You can get a very good Desktop spec from Dell US for you budget, i specified the following for $1974, your VAR may be able to do a better deal if they sell hardware. (i work for a UK VAR and we sell dell hence i went for that!)


                        Dell Precision 3620 Mini Tower

                        CPU- i5 3.3GHz Quad Core

                        RAM-16GB 2133MHz Ram (2x8GB)

                        Boot/ OS Drive- 256GB Solid State Drive

                        Addtional 1TB 7200 rpm hard drive

                        Graphics Card- 8GB NVIDIA Quadro M4000 (click other options to find it)


                        Laptop might be harder to get in budget without compromising too much, but the 7710 would be the best bet from Dell with alteast the M3000M card.


                        It doesn't sound like this will be an issue for you but If users want to run SOLIDWORKS at the same time as rendering i have found setting to GPU only mode for rendering makes it more tolerable, where as hybrid mode basically makes your system unusable without changing CPU core assignment. Ultimately if you wanted to work in both packages at once a dual GPU setup would be better, 1 rendering in GPU mode and the other using for graphics tasks in SOLIDWORKS. I'm testing such a setup at the moment but you would need the Precision 5810 or higher to make this an option which do cost a little more.

                        • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                          Peter Hildebrandt

                          Hi Brandon, i would recommend you to have a look at the Geforce Cards.The GTX 980 Ti has 2816 Cores/6GB Ram

                          compared to Quadro M4000 with 1664 Cores/8GB and is around 2/3 of the price.

                          • Re: HELP!! 2k Budget for a Visualize Computer
                            Brandon Frank

                            Thanks everyone I'll post what I end up going with and let everyone know how it went.