2 Replies Latest reply on Jun 1, 2018 10:39 AM by Rich Fagioli

    Mixing graphics cards for Visualise use

    Kevin Quigley

      We don't use Visualise at all at the moment, as all out workstations run AMD Firepro W5100 graphics cards, which of course, have no CUDA cores. We do run Keyshot - which only uses the CPU - and it runs very well on both our Dell workstations (with 36 and 56 cores respectively) and V-Ray. But we do see the potential benefits of GPU or Hybrid rendering, so what I would like to know is has anyone tried mixing AMD and NVidia cards in the same workstation?

       

      Essentially, what I want to try is retaining the AMD W5100 for general OpenGL display, and fitting an additional NVidia card for GPU rendering purposes. Whilst I would like to maybe go for a Quadro P4000, I can see that the GeForce GTX 1080 Ti is cheaper, and has significantly more CUDA cores. Would Visualise pick up the fact that the GeForce card was installed and enable GPU rendering, which allowing the W5100 to drive the displays? Anyone tried this?

        • Re: Mixing graphics cards for Visualise use
          Alan Sweetenham

          Hi Kevin i've never tried it previously myself but i recalled seeing a post about this by one of the SOLIDWORKS guys here

           

          9. Re: Visualize 2018 SP3 - adding Denoiser; dropping Fermi support

          Marcus Olsson

          I'd agree, but in this case it means having both AMD and NVIDIA drivers on the same system, and this has proven to be a complete nightmare...

           

          https://forum.solidworks.com/message/839185#comment-839185

           

          So mixing AMD And NVIDIA doesn't sound hopeful, ourselves we have always had better luck with drivers etc with NVIDIA for SOLIDWORKS and as a result recommend them, of course when Visualize came out this became an even stronger recommendation as the graphics card gives a huge speed up vs CPU and now with the AI denoiser in 2018 SP3 onwards this is a huge step forward in speed again. I think you will be impressed once you see the speed up and this is only supported by NVIDIA cards with more than 4GB memory.

           

          All in all i would unfortuantely advise ditching the AMD card and replacing with the P4000, maybe someone else can use the AMD who doesn't use visualize?

           

          I know some say Geforce is ok for them but our experience is that it's more likely to stop working perfectly due to an update for instance i recall windows forcing a driver update and suddenly we were getting lots of calls to say their performance went through the floor, i think this was about a year ago. tough bit is knowing what should work well where as with Quadro SOLIDWORKS commit to the dirver that should work optimally and if there is an issue we can do something about it. Visualize is less restrictive but we still reccoemnd Quadro as many people use a mix of SOLIDWORKS and Visualize.

           

          Cheers

           

          Alan

          • Re: Mixing graphics cards for Visualise use
            Rich Fagioli

            I will second Alan's point about driver issues, importantly, about how windows updates relate to them. I recently had the experience of running a major Windows update (and related registry tweaks) that destroyed my Visualize installation. As a result, I had to roll back the update, re-install Visualize, and the Nvidia drivers. All runs fine now, but I am forced to endure Windows' mandatory update screen, which I have to leave minimized so that it doesn't unexpectedly re-open and pause my renders. I live my workday in mortal fear that I accidentally update Widows.

             

            However, I don't see why you need the AMD card at all given that KeyShot is CPU driven. On a related note, the NVidia application can be tweaked for OpenGL specific applications, if I remember correctly. Hopefully, KeyShot will get it's act together and go GPU-driven. I really like their render universe.