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Autodesk Inventor/MATLAB/ANSYS/ Desktop Build

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September 18, 2011 4:42:43 AM

Hello, this is my first post here and Im really learning a lot just looking around for the past few days. I'm a college engineering student and I recently got a hold of an OLD desktop from my parents. I downloaded Inventor onto it (the 32bit XP SP3 version) and it is beyond slow. It is definitely not going to work out and with most of the components being from 2001 (including the mobo) I have decided to throw some money at getting a new computer.

My intended use is mostly modeling in Inventor, sometimes of somewhat large assemblies (around 1.5g file size). Also some light MATLAB and eventually working in ANSYS. I would like a system that will be able to run smoothly under these conditions if that is at all possible.

Budget - $1000

I do not need a keyboard, monitor or mouse.

Here is what Im thinking so far, any insight would be awesome.

Motherboard: one of these -

ASUS P8P67 PRO (REV 3.0) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard with UEFI BIOS

*or*

ASRock P67 PRO3 (B3) LGA 1155 Intel P67 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Not sure if I need the features of the more expensive one or if either is even my best option.

CPU: Intel Core i5-2500K Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz (3.7GHz Turbo Boost) 4 x 256KB L2 Cache 6MB L3 Cache LGA 1155 95W Quad-Core Desktop Processor BX80623I52500K

Memory: G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-12800CL9D-8GBRL

PSU: XFX Core Edition PRO550W (P1-550S-XXB9) 550W ATX12V 2.2 & ESP12V 2.91 SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS BRONZE Certified Active PFC Power Supply

HDD: Western Digital Caviar Black WD1002FAEX 1TB 7200 RPM 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

Video Card: ATI 100-505552 FirePro V3750 256MB 128-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 Workstation Video Card

DVD Burner: ASUS 24X DVD Burner - Bulk 24X DVD+R 8X DVD+RW 12X DVD+R DL 24X DVD-R 6X DVD-RW 16X DVD-ROM 48X CD-R 32X CD-RW 48X CD-ROM Black SATA Model DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS - OEM

Case: Antec Three Hundred Black Steel ATX Mid Tower Computer Case

OS: Windows 7 Home x64 - $200

That puts me at $1005 before taxes and Im sure I missed some little things that I'll need for assembly since I've never done this before.

If I chose a completely terrible system that simply wont work please let me know!

Thanks for looking.
September 19, 2011 10:55:17 PM

Well, I'm no tech expert, but I might be able to give you a few tips.

First off, I think the power supply may be just a bit too little for what you need it to do. For the same price (Less if you count rebates), I recommend the Antec Earthwatts 650W

I don't know much/anything about workstation video cards, but from what I can tell you should be fine. I've run Inventor before ( I took pre-engineering last year, so that makes me an instant expert on it and the software it uses xD )

Also, you don't need to buy the retail version of Windows 7 unless you plan on building more than 1 computer before Windows 8 comes out. You can install the retail version on as many computers at once as you like, but you can only use the OEM version on one computer at a time. However, it is $100, and what most PC builders prefer.

That's about all I can give. If you like, you can take everything I say with a grain of salt, because I'm not as experienced as a lot of guys here.
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September 19, 2011 11:08:50 PM

thanks so much for the reply!

I will definitely look into a bigger power supply, the one you posted looks like it should work.

Also the reviews I've read on that video card seem to say that it is fine for modeling so hopefully it would work out.

And thanks for enlightening me on the OS! That would have been an expensive mistake. I just might grab a Crucial M4 64GB SSD with that extra money to run the OS and inventor on.
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September 20, 2011 7:12:26 PM

Any other insight before I start ordering parts?
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Best solution

September 20, 2011 8:15:08 PM

If you don't mind spending the money, then yeah, a crucial m4 64GB SSD is the way to go!
The motherboard you have in your second post should be fine, the only thing you really need to consider is whether you want to have Crossfire later on in the future. Crossfire is when you have two of the same graphics card running at once. It would definitely be something to consider if you want to keep your computer running for a bit longer. Just buy the same card again and install it when your PC starts slowing down inventor. HOWEVER, you need to have a Mobo that will support Crossfire. This will be a but more expensive, but some good-but-cheap mobos will support Crossfire for around $125-130+.
Although your computer should be just fine for two years or so before you'd ever need to consider upgrades, probably a bit more than that because you've got an SSD.
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September 20, 2011 9:42:33 PM

Yup. That motherboard should work just fine.
You shouldn't need anything else in order to build your computer. I would check with someone more experienced just to be sure, though, but the parts you have now should be fine to order. If you did end up needing anything else, it would just be cables, etc.
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September 20, 2011 11:36:03 PM

Thanks so much for the help man, I appreciate it. :sol: 
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September 28, 2011 1:26:58 AM

Best answer selected by steve o 77.
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September 28, 2011 1:33:01 AM

Well good news, Im posting from the new machine right now and wow this thing is fast. Im still not entirely sure I edited the registry correctly in order to optimize the SSD and HDD as there were like 300 folders to edit (I didnt touch about 180 of them which had both the C:\User and C:\program sections in them since I wasn't sure if I should change both C's to my new drive name or what) but the system seems to be working great, Boots in 28 seconds from the time you hit the power button to it being ready to go.

Now time to find out if I can transfer my free 1 year trial of Inventor from my old PC to this beast...

edit: Inventor is downloading, looks like you can download it onto multiple machines under one account.
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September 30, 2011 9:17:42 PM

Glad I could help :D 
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