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New Workstation or Just a Tune-Up?

Question asked by Dan Neseth on Aug 31, 2011
Latest reply on Sep 19, 2011 by Dan Neseth

My current set-up:

 

Dell Precision T3400 Workstation

Pentium E6550 Core 2 Duo (2.33 GHz)

8 GB RAM (DDR2, 400MHz)

Nvidia Quadro FX 1700

500 GB 7200 rpm HDD

Windows XP x64 SP2

22" Widescreen Dell Monitor

Solidworks 2011 SP2

 

I am looking to update to SW2011 SP5 as soon as its available and am considering a hardware upgrade at the same time.  I did a quick look on Dell.com and it looks like a direct replacement for machine would run right around $1200, not accounting for additional memory, and I would probably just transplant my graphics card.  Extra memory would add a few hundred to the cost, probably around $1500 total for a new workstation with my same video card.

 

Or I could upgrade my current machine.  I did a quick check and I can get a 2.5 GHz quad-core for $210 and upgrade to Win7 for $140.  Total cost of $360 after shipping.  I haven't checked on compatibility, but maybe I could add a 128GB SSD for $250. 

 

My primary use is basic modeling, but I am doing more PhotoView rendering (still and animations) than I used to and occasional simulations.

 

What do you guys think?  I will try to post a performance score sometime soon.

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