I have some experience slapping together a gaming machines but I need to build a couple of CAD specific machines and I am feeling a bit unsure of myself. Below is what I have spec'd out. Any bonehead moves here? Something I am missing?
It may be cheaper and easier to call dell. I picked up a t1600 cad computer from them for $2,000
317-6059 1 Quad Core Xeon E3-1225, 3.10 GHz, 6M L3, 2GT, Turbo
317-2739 1 16GB, DDR3, Non-ECC SDRAM Memory, 1333MHz, 4x4GB,T1500
331-1965 1 Dell USB Entry Keyboard,No Hot Keys,English,Precision Desktop
320-1896 1 1GB nVIDIA Quadro 600,Dual Monitor,1DP and 1DVI,
342-2145 1 250GB SATA 3.0Gb/s, 7200RPM Hard Drive with 8MB DataBurst
421-5607 1 Windows 7 Professional,No Media, 64-bit,Fixed Precision, English
410-0560 1 Adobe Acrobat X, includes Serial Key Card, FI, ENG/FRN
421-3950 1 Microsoft Office Starter 2010,OptiPlex,Precision and Latitude
421-3954 1 Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010,English,OptiPlex,Precision and Latitude
935-2678 1 Dell Limited Hardware Warranty Plus Service Extended Year(s)
929-6847 1 Dell Limited Hardware Warranty Plus Service Initial Year
938-8622 1 ProSupport: Next Business Day Limited Onsite Service After Remote Diagnosis 2 Year Extended
951-8780 1 ProSupport: Next Business Day Limited Onsite Service After Remote Diagnosis Initial Year
989-3449 1 Thank you choosing Dell ProSupport. For tech support, visit http://support.dell.com/ProSupport or call 1-866-516-3115
983-9162 1 ProSupport : 7x24 Technical Support , 2 Year Extended
984-5810 1 ProSupport : 7x24 Technical Support , Initial
900-9987 1 Standard On-Site Installation Declined
320-2939 1 Dell Professional P2212H,Wide screen,21.5in Viewable Image Size,HAS,VGA,DVI,Opti/FPWS
you can get it cheaper without the prosupport, monitor, or office.
But iff you want to build it yourself get more ram, cad loves ram.
Have to disagree on all accounts with this guy and hope it's not too late. I'm a computer hardware enthusiast and a Civil 3d CAD Designer Full time. It is the most stressful and frustrating thing when the computer can't keep up. We run i7 4770 and 3770 on some of our older machines and it's not enough. Basically when building a CAD 3D machine all you can do is get the budget as high as possible and keep the system as cool possible. Civil 3D will use all resources all day if you are doing real work, the computers get hot in a room with 10 designers/engineering running CAD and stormwater scenarios all day. When I'm scrolling over 3d contours back and fourth and the programs stops for 20s to get past snapping to each one, it's a problem. The skys the limit on CAD machines. Lets not forget AutoDESK creates the benchmark programs that test out every aspect of the computer. They know how to utilize all the hardware. CAD Civil 3d is a $5000 program, engineering firms that are successful make tons of money. Let's not skimp out with a $1500 build and bottleneck the 5K we dropped on 3d software. Spend the money on the workstations and the designers will be happy, more productive, and your work won't be rushed and inaccurate.
The suggestion from a 25 y/o - 6 year CAD designer - uncle taught him to build computers at age 7 and hopes it's not too late for surlyhotdog to upgrade:
(also want to ad that my firm uses Civil3D to the full extent, 3d walkthroughs of completed projects, infrastructure design, full 3d systems):
Highend mobo that can take the best processor you can afford. Read the Toms hardware civil3d graphics charts and buy the best gpu card you can off that list. Read the 3d graphics and CAD processor chart and buy the best one off that. Buy 32 gb of good quality ram cause ram is cheap and its only $75 difference for twice as much. Get a nice power supply that runs cool and is reliable. You'll want to sell the $1000+ video card in about 2 years and buy whatever is top of the line then. You're not a gamer anymore scrounging from paycheck to paycheck buying parts to build your gaming rig. You are building for a professional engineering firm that if it's still around should be making hundreds of thousands if not into the millions a year. This isn't rocket science. Spending 5k+ on software and more once you factor in ICPR, WaterCAD, StormCAD, AutoDESK infrastructure design suite, etc. and then making all that money you spent a waste because you don't want to spend $3k on a computer is ridiculous. You want quality design work, long hours, deadlines, which all are part of working in the engineering field, then give your employees the tools they need to do so.
If I had the balls and was willing to risk getting fired I'd say this to my boss. He is letting me put new power supplies and update GPUs in our computers though so thanks to him.
GKnight - I'm grading and designing subdivisions working largely from surface models in C3D-14. Is the k-series quadro a step up from the regular quadro's, or is the best gaming card the direction to go? Does single vs. dual-Xeon's make a big difference. It's time to blow some of this-year profits to maximize next year's. What's your idea of the most cost-effective build?