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PC configuration for 3ds max/rendering

Last response: in Systems
January 22, 2010 12:35:13 PM

Hi there

I need to build a PC for 3D image rendering and large volume data analysis. I need quite strong graphics card as well since I work with very heavy 3d models and on dual screens. I also want to render shorter animations so quickest rendering time is very import as well. Can anyone please come up with list of compatible products for new build?

Budget is 4800$ or about £3000

Your help is much appreciated.
January 22, 2010 12:48:18 PM

Might want to format it according to the guidelines from the link in my signature. What don't you need (OS, monitor, keyboard/mouse, etc.)? Do you need any special items (wireless card, card reader, etc.)? Where do you prefer to buy from? Are you going to overclock?

You can get a very good PC for your purposes without spending that much. Here are my first thoughts to get it started. Links are to Newegg to look at the specs.

CPU: i7-920 $289

Mobo: Asus P6X58D Premium $310

RAM: 2x Mushkin Enhanced Redline 3x2 GB 1600 mhz CAS Latency 6 $500

HDD: 4x Samsung Spinpoint F3 1 TB $360 setup in RAID 10

SSD: 128 GB SSD ~$400. I'm not good about picking the best models, so the price is a placeholder. It might also be smaller depending on the number/size of the programs you need.

GPU: You might want to consider a workstation GPU for this. Check out nVidia's Quaddro or ATI's Fire line. It will be expensive though.

PSU: Corsair 750W $110

Optical: If you need a BluRay reader, it will be ~$100. If you need a BluRay burner, it'll be around $150. If you just need a DVD burner, it will be $30.

Case: Antec 1200 $160. Another option (and a case I really like the look of) is the Coolermaster Cosmos 1000 for $180. If it needs to be black, Coolermaster Cosmos 1100 for $200.

Total: ~$2,300. That's using the most expensive stuff in the options. That doesn't include an OS, monitors, keyboard, mouse or any other extras.
January 22, 2010 1:14:21 PM

Hi and thanks for your help. In this price you do not need to include os, monitor, keyboard an mouse. I also do not intend to get any additional item. I would prefer not to overclock it to maintain maximum stability when rendering.

I was looking at Intel Core i7-975 Extreme Edition Bloomfield processor. Could you please tell me your opinion on that.

I will be using this computer for professional use, therefore I will be working with very heavy 3d models like a site of 30 buildings at a time and turning them into 3 minute animations for example. So I am trying to find the most powerful processor without having to buy a rendering farm which could be build for example from 30 processors.

I want to autobackup files so is Raid 1 best option?

No need for Blue Ray, just DVD.

Thanks again for your answers
Related resources
January 22, 2010 1:18:48 PM

I will be buying In United Kingdom.
January 22, 2010 1:22:11 PM

The i7-975 is not worth it. It's a good $700 more than the i7-920, and is essentially an overclocked version of it. However, if you really want to blow the money on it, you can. Keep in mind that as soon as the i9s come out, it will be blown away. So instead of blowing $1000 for a CPU that will be surpassed in a matter of months, you might want to spend $300 on one now, save that budget to replace it with the newer one. I certainly wouldn't recommend this, but it is an option.

I would also check out some benchmarks of the CPUs for the program you use. See if the $700 is really worth it in terms of performance.

RAID 1 is completely redundant. It uses one drive to back up another automatically. RAID 10 is using 4 drives, with two pairs of drives in RAID 0, which is then placed into RAID 1. It gives you faster speeds with complete redundancy. The drawback is that it's expensive. You can do this with any even number of drives above 4.
January 22, 2010 1:39:06 PM

Great this advice is very,very helpful. Thank you very much
May 28, 2010 4:47:08 PM

Here's my shot at it. From what I understand its all about RAM and CPU when it comes to render times. As far as GPU Cards go I went with a none workstation card, I've seen arguments for both sides and i decided on this based on final price. I should have a public list available tomorrow for now ill link to individually.

MB: SUPERMICRO MBD-X8DTi-F-O Dual LGA 1366 Intel 5520 Extended ATX Dual Intel Xeon 5500 and 5600 Series

CPU: Intel Xeon X5650 Westmere 2.66GHz LGA 1366 95W Six-Core Server Processor x2

RAM: Kingston ValueRAM 6GB (3 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 ECC Unbuffered Server Memory x4

GPU: POWERCOLOR AX5970 2GBD5-MD Radeon HD 5970 (Hemlock) 2GB 512 (256 x 2)-bit GDDR5

SSD: Intel X25-M Mainstream SSDSA2M080G2XXX 2.5" 80GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1001FALS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5"

CASE/PSU: SUPERMICRO CSE-743TQ-865B-SQ Black Pedestal Server Case

I've been trying to build a decent workstation that balances power and price. I see a lot of wasteful suggestions where people just spout off the most expensive items. All in all i think this will work very well and it all comes in at around 4700. I'd like to blind test the GPU to see if I'd notice the difference between this and a 1500 dollar quadro fx.

Just to add confusion, there are always render farms to keep in mind:,2340.html

Good luck


found this workstation GPU, looks capable, it is 100 more (@ 835$) than the one listed above .
PNY VCQFX3800-PCIE-PB Quadro FX 3800 1GB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 SLI Workstation Video Card
February 9, 2013 9:48:24 PM

Processor: Intel 3.5 GHz LGA 1155 Core i7 3770K
Motherboard: MSI Z77 Mpower - Board Rev 4.1 (min BIOS-V17.OB16)
Memory: G.Skill TridentX DDR3 (2x8 GB) 2400 MHZ 10-12-12-31@1.65V (F3-2400C10D-8GTX)
Video Card: Asus NVIDIA GeForce GTX 550 Ti 1 GB GDDR5 (Open GL Optimization v4.1)
Hard Drive: Seagate Barracuda 2 TB Hard Drive (ST2000DM001)
CPU cooler: CoolerMaster V8
Power Supply: Cooler Master Thunder 700 Watts PSU
Cabinet: Cooler Master CM 690 II Advanced Mid Tower Cabinet

SSD: Intel® SSD 330 Series SATA3 6Gb/s, 25nm, MLC - 120GB : SSDSC2CT120A3K5

Venkataraghavan Krishnamachari
April 15, 2013 10:17:16 AM

So what did you get at last.
I want to build mine and its good to hear from your experience