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Another thread on advice for a gaming/workstation card

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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April 19, 2012 8:40:03 PM

APPROXIMATE PURCHASE DATE:

-Within 3-4 months.

PRICE RANGE:

- $600-$1200

USAGE FROM MOST TO LEAST IMPORTANT:

-GAMING AND CAD WORK ARE OF EQUAL IMPORTANCE
-Games will be mostly shooters, COD, Mass Effect, Battlefield, Possible diablo though and SC2. Would like power and flexability to play any game.

-CAD work will mostly be done with PTC Creo 1.0, will get 2.0 when it comes out on student edition.
-I will be using Creo not just for designing, but for simmulation as well (Finite Element Analysis and possible complex fluid dynamics).


CURRENT SYSTEM SPECS:

-Will be doing a clean sheet system build with a budget of about 2500 for everything except for display/mouse/keyboard.

PREFERRED WEBSITE(S) FOR PARTS:

-Will buy from any reputable vendor with the best deal, LOCATION: USA.

PARTS PREFERENCES:

-Not too picky, If I go with a workstation card though, ATI FirePro cards are preferable for use with Creo 2.0, see below.

http://www.techpowerup.com/164157/AMD-and-PTC-Team-Up-t...

OVERCLOCKING:

-Maybe

SLI OR CROSSFIRE:

-Maybe

MONITOR RESOLUTION:

-Not too picky, I want flexibility though and the option to go high res.

ADDITIONAL COMMENTS:

So I have been reading a lot about workstation vs gaming GPU's and from what I understand, workstation and gaming cards are really two different breeds.
Workstation cards are optimized for OpenGL, have moderate clock speeds and buttloads of memory. Have some special features designed for cad/animation/design programs not found on gaming GPU's. They excel at rendering complicated geometry but are not designed to do the kind of quick number crunching required by modern games. In general you get less per dollar with a workstation card too.
Gaming cards have high clock speeds and moderate amounts of memory. They are optimized for DirectX. They have some special features that some games can take advantage of. They do not have the memory required for rendering some large assemblies. You get a lot more for your money with gaming cards.

I have heard people say that a gaming card will do CAD a lot better than a workstation card will do gaming, and I have also heard the opposite. My biggest concern with using a gaming card would be having relics, missing points and edges, and frames not refreshing when using CAD programs. By biggest concern with using a workstation card for games would be simple lack of power, overheating, and general poor performance.

One question/idea I have is can I simply brute-force my way through this. Will having dual gtx-680's in SLI be so powerful that they will handle large assemblies with ease? Will having a firepro v7900 or v8800 simply have enough brawn to work well with games?

I was also wondering about the possibility of putting two cards in the system, and having both cards go into some sort of switch connected to my display. Could I simply activate one card when I want to use that one and when I want to use the other one just activate that one and use the switch to connect the display to the other card? Will having dual cards like this make windows act pissy?

I know that with $2500 I could easily build two computers, however it seems silly to have to buy two cases two motherboards two SSD's two HDD's two sets of ram two power supplies etc when the ohly difference between systems is my video card.

My last concern is this. I am probably going to go with an ivy bridge processor, and with this comes PCI 3.0. The latest gaming cards take advantage of this while the latest workstation cards still use 2.0. Is this major points for the gaming cards and major fail for the workstation cards???
April 20, 2012 2:09:37 PM

bump
April 20, 2012 2:33:19 PM

you did get wrong - workstation cards are optimized for proper software(no matter it will be OpenGL or DirectX) and can use its power for OpenGL. It also "tries" to not get hot(so basically your card will not burn).
Gaming cards are optimized for games and have kinda blocked its OpenGL power.

And, wait some time for the next gen. Quadros.

for everything else - use this:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum//forum2.php?config=to...
Related resources
April 20, 2012 3:29:19 PM

janiashvili said:
you did get wrong - workstation cards are optimized for proper software(no matter it will be OpenGL or DirectX) and can use its power for OpenGL. It also "tries" to not get hot(so basically your card will not burn).
Gaming cards are optimized for games and have kinda blocked its OpenGL power.

And, wait some time for the next gen. Quadros.

for everything else - use this:
http://www.tomshardware.com/forum//forum2.php?config=to...



That's useful info, but nobody really goes into how a workstation card will work for gaming. I'm still wondering how a firepro v3900 will do games and how a couple high end sli'd or xfire'd gaming cards will do Creo/Solidworks.
April 20, 2012 8:04:28 PM

I suggest to look at least to v4900 for that purpose. I guess it will do somehow like geforce 450 GTS
!