Laptop GPU for Solidworks?

Hey guys!

I have a question regarding laptop GPU. I need to get a laptop that can run the program 3D modelling Solidworks - I'm having a hard time finding GPU requirements via google hence this thread ;)

I plan on buying a 15.6" laptop with a resulotion of 1920*1080. Also with a quad core i7 (probably Q2670) and 8GB ram (1333 Mhz). Now the problem is I have no idea what kinda GPU power is required. They reccommend that we buy the Lenovo Thinkpad W520, but it's ridiculously expensive (like $3.5k) I'd like to only spend like half of that if possible.

I've red that graphics cards made for gaming (the GT series?) is not optimal, but would the above PC with a GT 550 be able to run this program smoothly - or do I need to go bigger?

I wouldn't mind if it could run a few games either ;)

Thanks in advanced!

4 answers Last reply
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  1. It will handle most anything. But you never mentioned how much it costs, the workstation laptops start at around $1300 for i7 and 1080p. Their quadros/firepros will handle solidworks better if that is all you're going to do with the laptop.
  2. 'Gaming' cards are not the best for running solidworks, more complex models may not render correctly when you manipulate said model around the screen (I usually only run into it when I'm modelling in wireframe, and the 'snap to' view usually resets it) but gaming cards will run solidworks. I run solidworks on my laptop with no major hangups, using a Raedon HD 3470M GPU, I also run it on my pc's (GT560 on one, and HD5870 on the other) so I would say that the GT550, being a much more powerful gpu than the 3470, would run it okay. However, the 'quadro' and 'firepro' series of gpu's are the one's most commonly used with this type of application.
  3. When you choose a consumer card you will NOT have realview graphics in Solidworks.
    Also the rendering will ALL be done on the CPU so thats crap.

    I suggest running a firepro in a laptop. I know my desktop firepro offers a lot of bang for the buck. Not to mention no driver issues so far.

    Just choose what will fit your budget.
    If you have the option of building / buying a desktop system, I would go for that ;)

    laptops are just "laptops" They are not made for solidworks. Allthough it will run okay on a nice fast laptop. The rendering is awfull...
  4. Alright, thanks for the feedback. I'm just now learning to use Solidworks and will by no means be doing any really advanced stuff. Today I saw it running fine on a year old HP that cost less than $1k, so a GT 550, i7 quad core and 8 gigs of ram should be decent. I opted not to go for a workstation gpu since I will probably do a bit of gaming and other stuff in the future aswell.

    Thanks alot for the feedback!
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