CAD Workstation - 1st Build Questions & Prices

Hi everyone.
This is my first build project instead of a store bought item so I'm getting bogged down in the shear amount of information regarding CPU's, Memory, GPU's, Mother Boards etc.
I'm changing vocation having worked as an illustrator and model maker and am now moving into 3-D modelling using ZBrush (mainly) with other graphic programmes so this computer will need to be capable of CAD graphics instead of being set up as a gaming PC.
So far I've looked at Cyberpower (Power Mega 2000 CAD – systems) and Aria (Gladiator CAD – systems) websites around the £2k price range. Are there better, more reliable or trustworthy suppliers and if so, who do you recommend?

A few issues I’m trying to find out about are:
CPU – Is an Intel® Core™ i7-3930K Six Core 3.20 GHz 12MB Intel Smart Cache LGA2011 better than dual cores for CAD operations?
Overclocking – Is this necessary or recommended for CAD workstations?
Operating system – Which is better, Windows 7 Pro or Windows 8 Pro?

Here are the system specs from Cyberpower: (I’m going to buy the monitor, keyboard, speakers etc separately).

Product Name: Power Mega II 2000 CAD (NO MONITOR)

Price: £1,952.00



CAS:Corsair Obsidian Series 650D Mid-Tower Gaming Case w/ dual 200mm fans, integrated fan controller, front USB 3.0 Port & Side-Panel Window


CD:Pioneer BDR-208DBK 15X BLU-RAY Burner & 16X DVD±R/±RW Drive (please select the Blue Ray software in the Software section)


CPU:Intel® Core™ i7-3930K Six Core 3.20 GHz 12MB Intel Smart Cache LGA2011***Overclockable XXX***

CS_FAN:Default Case Fan




FAN:Xigmatek Prime CPU Fan with 4 direct heatpipes w/ 140mm PWM fan and rubber fan clip, ultra quiet with high performance ***Overclockable XXX*** [-22]



HDD:128 GB Plextor PX-M5S Series SATA III Gaming MLC Solid State Disk (Single Drive)

HDD2:2TB SATA-III 6.0Gb/s 64M Cache 7200RPM Hard Drive (Single Hard Drive)





MEMORY:32GB (4x8GB) PC12800 DDR3/1600mhz Quad Channel Memory (Kingston HyperX Blu w/Heat Spreader)




MOTHERBOARD:MSI X79A-GD45(8D) Intel X79 Chipset, 3-Way SLI / Crossfire supported, 4 Channel DDR3 ATX Mainboard w/ 8 RAM slots, THX TruStudio Pro 7.1 Audio, GbLAN, USB3.0, SATA-III RAID, 3 Gen3 PCIe X16, 2 PCIe x16 & 1 PCIe x1 ***Overclockable XXX*** [+0]


NETWORK:ONBOARD 10/100/1000 GIGABIT LAN PORT -- As standard on all PCs

OS:Microsoft® Windows 8 Pro (64-bit Edition) (64-bit Edition)

OVERCLOCK:No Overclocking

POWERSUPPLY:850 Watts Power Supplies (Cyberpower 850watt High Performance Gaming Power Supply)







USB1:Built-in USB 2.0 Ports [+0]

VIDEO:NVIDIA Quadro 4000 2GB 16X PCIe Workstation Video Card (SLI) (3D Vision) (Major Brand Powered by NVIDIA)

VIDEO2:None, or On-Board Integrated Graphics

VIDEO3:None, or On-Board Integrated Graphics

WARRANTY:STANDARD WARRANTY: 3 Year Labour, 1 Year Parts, 1 Month Collect and Return plus Life-Time Technical Support

In terms of final details I would probably include wireless, Bluetooth connectivity and an SD card reader for practical connectivity and usage for a tablet, keyboard, mouse and uploading images from my camera card.
Any practical advice on hardware specifications would be very much appreciated as this is an enormous investment for me. I’m looking for a system that will work really well and be up-gradable, expandable in the future.
2 answers Last reply
More about cad workstation 1st build questions prices
  1. CPU - You will want as much CPU as you can get. With the amount of instructions going on the choice is usually a high end i7 like the Sandy Bridge-E on the LGA2011 platform. Overclocking is not necessary, but there is nothing stopping you either. If you choose an i7-4770k on the LGA 1150 platform then an overclock would be more recommended, but the SB-E is a beast as-is (even more so overclocked).

    OS - Win 7 Pro would be my choice at the moment, but the update for Win 8 coming later this year (Blue) will likely change things.

    For comparison, the build below uses low latency memory and a pair of SSDs mirrored for the OS drive. Work backward from here, or consider building yourself to save money and get more of a machine.

    CPU: Intel Core i7-3930K 3.2GHz 6-Core Processor ($499.99 @ Microcenter)
    CPU Cooler: Cooler Master Hyper 212 EVO 82.9 CFM Sleeve Bearing CPU Cooler ($29.98 @ Outlet PC)
    Motherboard: Asus P9X79 LE ATX LGA2011 Motherboard ($224.99 @ Amazon)
    Memory: Mushkin Redline 32GB (4 x 8GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($279.99 @ Newegg)
    Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($214.99 @ NCIX US)
    Storage: Samsung 840 Pro Series 256GB 2.5" Solid State Disk ($214.99 @ NCIX US)
    Storage: Seagate Barracuda 2TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($85.99 @ NCIX US)
    Video Card: PNY Quadro 4000 2GB Video Card ($719.99 @ Amazon)
    Case: NZXT Phantom 410 (Black) ATX Mid Tower Case ($84.50 @ Amazon)
    Power Supply: SeaSonic 650W 80 PLUS Gold Certified ATX12V / EPS12V Power Supply ($104.99 @ Amazon)
    Optical Drive: Asus BW-12B1ST/BLK/G/AS Blu-Ray/DVD/CD Writer ($49.99 @ Newegg)
    Operating System: Microsoft Windows 8 Professional (OEM) (64-bit) ($129.98 @ Outlet PC)
    Total: $2640.37
  2. ^ he is in the UK. just a heads up

    heres what i would get though

    do not buy from cyberpower. its just like buying from a big box store (in other words there is no difference as they both scam you) build it yourself
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