Basically I am looking for a good graphics card that will do exactly what I need from the workload that I have. Basically I am work in programs like Adobe CS6 with very light animation in Maya 3dMax c4D and other animation programs. I am looking for the right card. Ill spend the extra dough if need be but I dont see the point in shelling the extra dough for a Nvidia Quadro when I could get literally double that performance with a AMD Firepro.
Also for what I am doing Im dont need a heavy workstation graphics card thats why I was feeling the Firepro. But is how inferior is the Firepro to the Quadro?
Also are these workstation cards all talk and you could essentially get the same performance from a gaming GPU?
Workstation card are different form the gaming cards. While workstation cards excell in tasks like animation, gaming cards excel in gaming.
Your needs can be properly met by a normal gaming card like GTx 670 or HD 7950. I'd say go with GTX as the CUDA cores help the processor in tasks like video editting.
I'm no expert but both AMD Firepro and nVidia Quadro are good cards. Amd also has high end card like w10000
While both workstation and consumer cards are based on identical silicon, there are a few important differences between them.
Perhaps the most important, besides the massive price increase when purchasing a professional equivalent of a consumer card, workstation cards have highly optimized and validated drivers for most professional applications.
Using these professionally orientated drivers ensures that you have minimal compatibility issues with your software and can obtain maximum performance.
On the other side, workstation cards are also designed for reliability over raw performance on a hardware level.
As such, they are generally clocked quite a bit lower and run at higher voltages.
For unoptimized applications (games, standard consumer or not industry standard software) your performance would be reduced when compared to an equivalent piece of consumer silicon.
Unless your specific software was written to utilize hardware acceleration only in conjunction with the professional driver sets (check the documentation to be sure), stick with a much less expensive top end gaming card.
In your situation, a high end consumer GPU will probably perform faster than any comparably priced professionally orientated card and should not be massively slower than a top end professional card.
I understand the workload that you have and for me I still ended up getting a high end use gaming gpu since I also play a lot. So I had to make sure my set up could handle the load. But if it is for work purpose alone. I think you should stick with a regular gaming card.
A top of the range gaming card is fine for light animation in Maya and 3ds max. There are a few features that won't work properly like hair simulations but general light modeling and animation will be fine. Make sure you turn off all overclocking ( gpu and CPU). For some reason it makes maya crash a lot. Also download the driver from the autodesk site. They have maya drivers for the gtx 680.
If you decide to take it up more seriously and opt for a pro card instead, don't buy one of the lower end ones for maya like a quadro 4000. They suck for maya. Anything less than a Quadro 5000 is a waste of time for 3d work. The quadro 5000 and 6000 are cheap on eBay these days.