Hello recently a friend and I have been researching what is the best way for him to do home graphic rendering. The reason i'm posting this and not him is because he knows more about the software and I know more about hardware but am far from a novice in software, but back to the point i have narrowed my search down to several options
Build a nice powerful standard computer something like
16 gigs of DDRM3 ram
3930k No Overclock
2 120 gig SSD in raid 0
Nvidia GTX 590
and an HD monitor but after some more research I started wondering if maybe it would be better to have maybe 4 base build PowerEdge R210 II but the problem with that is I don't know much about puting together a sever system so i was thinking maybe daisy chain 4 600 dollar dell bland business computers but i don't really know about that either so I thought i'd ask my favorite forum and see if any of you guys can help point me in the right direction. Oh and by the way the max cost for hardware and gear only is 3000$ but that is flexible any suggestions are helpful, and this is strictly for graphic rendering, web design, photoshop, video editing, benign internet stuff, and common tasks such as music downloading.
Auctually if i were you id go with option one, Servers are fun to play with. But curtain number 1 will perform better exceptional on every level. IF he isnt gonna mess in photo shop all day he can play the latest game without any problems. with that set up he won't need to upgrade for another 4 to 5 years or more
That storage solution will not leave you that much to work with, and on a rendering station if you're going to be working with huge files you want at least a 1 or 2 TB hard drive in addition to your SSD.
As far as the video card goes, the 590 is meant for really high end gaming. If you're going to be rendering I recommend getting a good professional card like the Fire Pro or NVIDIA Quaddro. The $749 required for the 590 can get a really mid to high end model of either of those.
16 gigs of DDRM3 ram
Most X79 motherboards are expandable up to 64GB of RAM but that depends on how many DIMM slots each one has.
Also I was thinking maybe dual core xeons on a two prosseser motherboard would be comparable to option 1
And when you say a Quadro would a NVIDIA Quadro FX 3800 be better than the NVIDIA GTX 590
That depends on what you want to do with it. The 590 is meant for games. The Quaddro FX is used in rendering environments as it can hit the high details that a lot of gaming cards can't. The Fire Pro V5900 would also be a good choice in this area as well.
But even then there's a huge caveat and that's that it's so big that there's very few cases on the market that will be able to work with it, this kind of setup can be *VERY* expensive, and it requires a really elaborate cooling solution to be able to work properly (standard air coolers don't cut it with this board).