Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

SW2010+ Workstation build questions

Last response: in Systems
Share
September 30, 2010 2:54:54 PM

Hello, all. Long time reader, first time poster - thanks in advance. I will be building a workstation, and wanted some input on my component choices:

Uses: SolidWorks 2010 primarily, running AutoCAD, web browsers (firefox), Outlook, OpenOffice spreadsheets, etc. in the background. I work at a small company that builds custom industrial equipment, and I design all the machines. My designs include hundreds to thousands of components, and I animate designs as a sales tool. Limited FEA - we typically just build very heavy as appearance is everything. Web browsing for downloads (i.e. using vendor bearing models, etc.), spreadsheets for build/cost tracking.

Current system: Dell Precision 470 running dual Xeon 3.6GHz, 3GB RAM (32-bit), nVidia fx1300, and whatever came in it for hard drives. Nothing impressive - this machine is a few years old. Running XP.

Budget: I have been given a $1500 build budget for this, though I probably have some wiggle room. Original budget was $1k, but reason has won out. I will be using existing monitors, keyboard, mouse, etc., so this build is case and internals only.

Build: 64-bit, Win 7, needs to be capable of future editions of SolidWorks without additional cost. I am planning on using: Cooler Master HAF 922 Case, MSI 870A-G54 Mobo, AMD Phenom II X6 3.2GHz processor, OCZ 750FTY psu, dual OCZ Vertex 2 SSDs in 40 or 60 GB running Raid0 for OS and software, dual WD Caviar Green 1TB 5400 rpm 3.0Gb/s 64mb cache running Raid1 for file storage and backup, LG GH22NS40 optical drive, 2 additional Cooler Master 120mm fans for cooling, 2 x 4GB OCZ or G.Skill DDR3 1333 RAM, AeroCool CoolPanel III for fan control/card reading, and ATI FirePro V4800 1GB PCIe Video. I would love to go to a V7800 or V8700, but I don't think the performance vs. cost is there.

I am in the US, and will be using newegg etc. for my purchases, and estimate my build at about $1300 as it sits. I would like to know what everyone thinks about my components, system as a whole, and where I am overkill and underkill. If you think I really need to spend the extra $500-650 on the higher FirePros, and can help me justify the price difference, fine. If there is anything I don't have that you think I should, let me know that as well. I have about $200 left in the budget, which will be eaten up with a copy of Windows 7 64-bit, miscellaneous cables, etc.

I am aware the SW2010 won't make much use of the hex core, but I believe that a near future edition will support up to 4 as that is becoming a standard. I plan to let the remaining cores run my background stuff. I have lots of issues now: SW crashes, computer locks up, etc. I think heat may be a problem, but am certain I do not have enough processor, RAM, or video card. Thoughts?

Thanks for any advice!
GMCMG
a b B Homebuilt system
September 30, 2010 3:22:35 PM

Quote:

Build: 64-bit, Win 7, needs to be capable of future editions of SolidWorks without additional cost. I am planning on using: Cooler Master HAF 922 Case, MSI 870A-G54 Mobo, AMD Phenom II X6 3.2GHz processor, OCZ 750FTY psu, dual OCZ Vertex 2 SSDs in 40 or 60 GB running Raid0 for OS and software, dual WD Caviar Green 1TB 5400 rpm 3.0Gb/s 64mb cache running Raid1 for file storage and backup, LG GH22NS40 optical drive, 2 additional Cooler Master 120mm fans for cooling, 2 x 4GB OCZ or G.Skill DDR3 1333 RAM, AeroCool CoolPanel III for fan control/card reading, and ATI FirePro V4800 1GB PCIe Video. I would love to go to a V7800 or V8700, but I don't think the performance vs. cost is there.

Good start.

A few things:
1. Get the Samsung F3s for storage. The WD Greens are very slow, even for a storage drive.

2. A single 80-90GB SSD should be enough for SolidWorks, other programs and OS, and a pretty good model library. Currently, running in RAID will not allow you to use TRIM.

3. Do you plan to extensively use COSMOS?

4. If appearance is not that important, you could use the HAF912 and save some money.

5. Imo, get a nVidia workstation card. ATIs drivers are not as optimized as the nVidia drivers.

6. MSI is not one of the top quality boards. Get this ASUS: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... or if you are willing to spend more: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
m
0
l
September 30, 2010 4:22:57 PM

Shadow703793 said:
Quote:

Build: 64-bit, Win 7, needs to be capable of future editions of SolidWorks without additional cost. I am planning on using: Cooler Master HAF 922 Case, MSI 870A-G54 Mobo, AMD Phenom II X6 3.2GHz processor, OCZ 750FTY psu, dual OCZ Vertex 2 SSDs in 40 or 60 GB running Raid0 for OS and software, dual WD Caviar Green 1TB 5400 rpm 3.0Gb/s 64mb cache running Raid1 for file storage and backup, LG GH22NS40 optical drive, 2 additional Cooler Master 120mm fans for cooling, 2 x 4GB OCZ or G.Skill DDR3 1333 RAM, AeroCool CoolPanel III for fan control/card reading, and ATI FirePro V4800 1GB PCIe Video. I would love to go to a V7800 or V8700, but I don't think the performance vs. cost is there.

Good start.

A few things:
1. Get the Samsung F3s for storage. The WD Greens are very slow, even for a storage drive.

2. A single 80-90GB SSD should be enough for SolidWorks, other programs and OS, and a pretty good model library. Currently, running in RAID will not allow you to use TRIM.

3. Do you plan to extensively use COSMOS?

4. If appearance is not that important, you could use the HAF912 and save some money.

5. Imo, get a nVidia workstation card. ATIs drivers are not as optimized as the nVidia drivers.

6. MSI is not one of the top quality boards. Get this ASUS: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... or if you are willing to spend more: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...


Thanks for the help. Some comments, questions:

1) I had heard a couple good comments about the Samsungs, and forgot to look into them. I hate slow, so Samsung it is.

2) Had not given TRIM much thought - I appreciate the point and will definitely do this. Did not realize TRIM/RAID were not compatible.

3) COSMOS will not run often at all - what changes should I consider based on this?

5) What nVidia models do you recommend? I am interested in a performance/quality per price, and am willing like I said to argue more money if necessary to get a better card. Considering I am running a FX1300 now with problems, what do you recommend at a minimum?

6) Was not sold on MSI - guess I shouldn't have been trying to shave a couple bucks on the base of the build! Will go ASUS.
m
0
l
a b B Homebuilt system
September 30, 2010 9:50:08 PM

3. If you make extensive use of COSMOS and PhotoView 360, having a little more than 8GB (12GB should be fine) RAM would help. This is assuming very large and detailed renderings/calculations. If you are not doing this, then 8GB is plenty.

5. For nVidia cards, the problem is the price. You are much better off with the ATI V4800. It's not a bad card at all esp. for the price.
m
0
l
!