Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

RAM & Other upgrade advice needed...

Tags:
Last response: in Memory
Share
May 29, 2012 7:28:43 PM

Hi all,

I had my workstation built about 4 years ago now for £1000 but as I do a lot of intensive modelling/rendering (2D and possibly animation) I am thinking it is about time to upgrade some specs, I am thinking without spending a fortune its probably going to be the GPU, RAM and I would also like some advice on whether it is worth/safe to overclock my existing system??

What I am in essence trying to improve is rendering speed and being able to render and multi-task on the likes of Photoshop etc.

Here are the details:

Approximate Purchase Date: Anytime this is solved within the next 3 months.

Budget Range: £500 (but obviously it is all about value for money.)

System Usage: 3D Modelling/Rendering (No gaming whatsoever really)

So here is what I already have:

- Case: Black Trident case + 2 front USB
- Processor (CPU): Intel® Core™2 Quad Q8200 (4 X 2.33GHz) 1333MHz FSB/4MB Cache
- Motherboard: ASUS® P5Q WS: DDR2, SATAII, PCI-e x16, 1 PCI, 2 x PCI-e x1
- Memory (RAM): 4GB CORSAIR XMS2 800MHz (2x2GB)
- Graphics Card: 512MB QUADRO FX1700 PCI Express + 2 x DVI + HD-OUT
- 2nd Graphics Card: NONE
- 1st Hard Disk: HITACHI 1TB 32mb SATA 7200rpm HDD
- 2nd Hard Disk: MAXTOR 320GB SERIAL ATA II HARD DRIVE WITH 8MB CACHE (7,200rpm)
- Power Supply: 450W Quiet Dual Rail PSU + 120mm Case Fan
- Processor Cooling: 22dBA TRIPLE COPPER HEATPIPE CPU COOLER
- OS: Windows 7 64bit


Preferred Website(s) for Parts: Any really, as long as suitable for UK.

Overclocking: Would like to yes if this is worth doing/ not going to kill my hardware.

SLI or Crossfire: Not entirely sure what this means tbh sorry, from what I can gather this would be using two GPU's?? Does this mean I can run my original quadro & another as well??

Monitor Resolution: 2 X 1920x1080

Additional Comments:
- Reducing power consumption is bonus but not critical at all.
- Any general advice on what might be best to upgrade would be really helpful.
- Am I right in thinking my maximum RAM is 2GB per slot totaling 8GB?
- Again, advice on overclocking would be appreciated.
- Advice on whether to stick to QUADRO for my 3D work, or whether now times have changed is it worth me switching to a gaming card for better value?? I do run a lot of AUTODESK software, I think they prefer nvidia??
- I presume there is no point in upgrading the motherboard or CPU as this would be too costly??

Thanks in advance for all of your help.
a b } Memory
May 29, 2012 10:15:48 PM

Overclocking your system is a cheap way to increase its performance and if you take the necessary precautions (look out for excessive heat and voltages) there's no real risk of frying anything so I think you should do it.

The maximum RAM supported by your motherboard is 16GB so you should get at least 8GB. It's a cheap upgrade that will make a difference.
Quadros are still very good cards for your kind of work but if you have money to spare there's no harm in getting a new one.

Upgrading the motherboard+CPU could be costly but you might notice some improvements in performance. Bear in mind that upgrading your motherboard to a more recent one will also require buying DDR3 RAM sticks.

SLI/Crossfire means that your system will use 2 or more GPU's however they have to be the exact model (save for some exceptions).This obviously is a huge advantage.

I'm not aware of how much power those kind of GPU (quadro and firepro) use but normally you would want a better PSU especially if you do consider going for a SLI/Crossfire upgrade
!