Building a PC for 3D work

I’ve decided to retire my old and trusty i7 920 machine as a render node and build a new workstation. It’s been 5 years since I purchased it and in the world of technology my computer is already ancient :)

I will start out with a disclaimer – I’m not a professional pc builder, nor am I always following the latest hardware news. However, I have spent a few weeks researching my options. Anyway, take this with a grain of salt, as everyone has slightly different needs for a pc.

There is one issue that is always there when deciding on a new computer – Do I buy now or wait a couple of months until “the next great thing” comes out? Today that next great thing would be Ivy Bridge-E 6 core CPUs in the September or Haswell-E 8 core processors a year after that.
As always, you should analyse the benefits of waiting and if it’s worth sticking with the lower productivity until that time.
Ultimately it comes down to this – there is always going to be something faster around the corner, if I would keep on waiting, I would still be running a Pentium 2 machine.

The 4930k Ivy Bridge-E coming out in September will be more expensive and not really that much faster than the current Haswells, so it’s out.
8 core CPUs are still a year in the future, so they are out as well.

Since I decided that it is not worth waiting a couple of months for a marginal (10% speed upgrade), I can focus on the technology that is available now.

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

First of all… my budget! I can not afford flashy boxx workstations or dual xeon monsters from dell or hp, so I am looking at a self-built, not overly expensive rig (~1500 eur max)

Here is the config I will buy:

CPU: Intel i7 4770k

A fast CPU is the most important thing for 3d work. Everyone wishes their render speeds were faster!

Amd is so far behind the i7s, it’s not even funny, so Intel would be my first choice.
Interestingly enough, the 2 years old 3930K 6 core CPU is slightly faster, but costs about 2.5 times more, I personally think it is not worth that extra cost.

I will be overclocking the 4770k to about 4.0 – 4.3GHz to squeeze out a bit more power. Haswell CPUs are notorious for crappy temperatures even at stock speed, so I will try delidding it and using a better thermal paste than the one that comes from factory
*** This voids the warranty, so it’s not recommended. Try at your own risk! ***

If you do not wish to overclock, you can choose 4770 (without K) to save a few bucks.

CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14

Good cooling is a must for an overclocked pc, so i will not pinch pennies in this area. NH-D14 is universally recommended as one of the top air-coolers available.

If you do not want to overclock, you can stick with the stock cooler that comes with your CPU.

Motherboard: Gigabyte Z87X-UD3H

Choosing a motherboard can be very confusing, since there are so many choices out there. I think it’s best to stick with a reliable brand you trust and pick a model that has all your needs covered and is within your budget.

Memory: Corsair Vengeance Low Profile 32GB (4x8GB)

Since the motherboard has only 4 slots of ram, I will be filling them all. I have experienced the problems that come from having too little memory in the past (even with 16gb), so it’s not something I want to run into again.
If you decide to get only 16gb, please make sure you use 2x8gb modules so you can add 2 more later if needed. If you you use 4x4gb, an upgrade means your old ram is worthless.

I went with the low profile ram, because there is no real difference in performance, but it is easier to fit a large cpu cooler right next to it.

HDD: 128 GB Samsung 840 Pro SDD for system and software + 4x2TB Toshiba DT01ACA200 in a Raid 10 setup

Fast and reliable SDD for the system really does make a difference, so that’s what I’m going to use. 128gb should be enough for this purpose.

For storage I will go with a raid 10 setup for speed + reliability. It might be an overkill, but I want to feel safe about my data (obviously backups to an external storage location are a must as well. Amazon Glacier seems like a reasonably priced option here)
All HDDs fail sooner or later, it’s just a matter of time.

GPU: Quadro 4000

I will re-use the card from my current PC. If I didn’t have it already, I would look into options like Nvidia Geforce 680 GTX (tested and fully compatible with Mari) or Quadro K5000 (expensive, but should have very good performance with 3d apps).

For a more budget friendly choice, consider gtx 660/ gtx 760.

PSU: be quiet! Pure Power L8 630W

A good quality power supply is a must to protect your computer. I’ve had two cheap psus burn out on me in the past and it’s not a fun feeling when you see smoke coming out of your expensive PC!
This power supply is modular, so I will only use the cables that I need (easier to avoid a rat’s nest in the case)
To see how much power you need – check out this calculator

___________________________________________________________________________________________________

Now after adding in a case and shipping, the price for this computer comes out to about 1200EUR. I think it’s not a bad deal and I am well within my budget.

Keep in mind this PC is for a decent all-around work in software like:
3ds Max
VRay
Photoshop
Mari
Zbrush
Marvelous Designer

If I was going for an ultimate rendering machine, the setup would be different (perhaps 4×4770 render nodes in a network)

If you have any thoughts or suggestions, feel free to post them in the comments!

79 thoughts on “Building a PC for 3D work

  1. I’m doing a very similar configuration with i74770k cpu but for a rendernode. It’s resulting about 730 €. On various forums on internet the suggestions was to choose this new processor and overclock it.

  2. Thankyou very much for
    What Iam exactly searching
    It’s very usefull to those who confused to build a pc for
    3d work

  3. How much it cost, around, that configuration?

  4. Hi Austris,

    Will try to help you. :)

    HDD: 128 GB… Believe me, for WS do not go below 256gb.

    GPU: I have Quadro 4000 is my best GPU. But have and one gtx660, also has excellent graphics, no mistakes

    For Power, dont go without 750W

    Good luck :)

    Eric Milos

    • Thank you for the suggestions :)

    • I forgot to mention;

      For CPU best buy is 2600k, but now it can not find.
      I have Rfarm 16x 2600k on 4.5-4.6ghz, with Noctua 9 SP2 (temp max 65C)

      And my WS is 3930k..
      If you decide for 3930k will get maybe 40% in speed.. 4.3ghz (temp max 70C)

      Cheers,
      Eric Milos

    • Definitely agree with Eric, 256gb definitely for OS and software.

      Also agree with Eric re power. I bought a 1000w when I built my i940 4 years ago and it was worth every penny.

  5. I was expecting more cores. Any idea on the state of play with six cores? Are they just not common yet?

    Thanks for the post. Very useful.

    • The last 6 core non-server cpu was 3930K (2 years old now and still very expensive) There will be a new 6 core in september – 4930K, but speed is supposed to be only 10% higher than 3930k. The price will be about the same.
      I figure it’s not worth the wait if there isn’t at least 8 cores.

      The problem is that most consumers do not need that many cores, so intel doesn’t really push for more cores in non-server CPUs.
      Most of the recent developments seem to have been about lower power consumption and better onboard video.

      Unfortunately we are in the minority of users that want raw power and a lot of cores.

  6. In your storage what do you mean by raid 10 setup?

    • Here’s a very simple explanation.

      There are 4 disks.

      If I save a 1 gb file, it will save first half of the file to the 1st disk and the second half of the file to the 2nd disk. Saving is 2 times faster than just using 1 disk (data is striped)
      +
      It will also save the first half to the 3rd disk and the second half to the 4th disk (data is also mirrored)

      So the benefits are that all my data is saved 2 times faster and it also has an automatic backup copy. If 1 disk dies, I replace it and no data is lost.

      The negative side is that from my 4x2tb disks, I only have 4tb storage space.

  7. Have u concern about Dual XEON 2650
    It is more core than I7 good to render.

    • Unfortunately I can not afford a dual xeon setup (to be honest even a single xeon is more than I would like to pay)
      If you have the cash, sure, why not.

  8. Vray-Rendering.com

    Thank you mr

    :)

    M.R.KH

  9. Intel® Core™ i7 3770K Processor Socket-1155
    Quad Core 3.5GHz, 8MB Smart Cache, 5 GT/s DMI, 22nm, 77W, HT, VT-x
    ASUS P8Z77-V Pro, Intel® Z77 Express Chipset Mother Board
    4 x DIMM slots support upto 32GB DDR3 1600/1333MHz DC Memory
    2 x PCIe 3 x16, 1 x PCIe 2 x16 (x4 mode), 2 x PCIe x1, 2 x PCI slots
    4 x SATA 6Gbps, 4 x SATA 3Gbps ports
    Integrated Intel® 82579V Gigabit Network Controllers, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n
    Realtek® ALC 892 8-Channel High Definition Audio CODEC
    4 x USB 3.0 ports and 10 x USB 2.0 ports
    32GB DDR3 1600MHz Memory (4 x 8GB)
    240GB Intel 2.5″ Solid State Drive (SSD)
    1TB Seagate 7200rpm SATA3 Hard Disk
    PNY Nvidia Quadro K4000 3GB GDDR5 PCIe Professional Graphic Card
    24x SATA Dual-layer DVD-Rewriter, Logitech USB Keyboard and Mouse
    Gigabyte Chassis with Cooler Master 650Watts Power supply
    Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit OE

    Can you give me some suggestion this is ok for my new pc

    • I would go for the newer 4770k instead of 3770k (same price, newer architecture, more power) and a suitable motherboard with 1150 socket (z87 chipset)

      The rest of this setup looks pretty good to me. Maybe 2tb for storage instead of 1tb. Those textures and scenes build up pretty fast

  10. Hi!

    Don´t you prefer i7 3820 with 10mb L3cache than the i7 4770K?

  11. Austris,

    Was the i920 not your main ws ?

    Could you explain a bit more about your current hardware ?

    At the moment, I use a single PC (i940 with 24gb, 256gb ssd and a Quadro 2000D), good but not too expensive components.

    For rendering I do some test renders on this machine (I don’t have a separate render node), but do my big long renders using a render farm.

    Is this how you work ?

    I too would like to upgrade my machine, but in all truthfulness, in my experience (I’m talking about me), a faster machine can make me lazy because then I get ‘sloppy’ with good practices :) (leaving layers on, not turning geometry into boxes or hiding them etc etc).

    It’s amazing how good the i7 machines have turned out (not needing to upgrade every 2 years but every 4-5 !).

    • 920 was/is my main workstation at the moment. It’s been very good to me for the last 5 years :)
      For test renders and small jobs it is decent enough (will be nice to upgrade though)

      Since I do not have a farm of my own, I usually send bigger jobs to REBUS farm for render. It usually works out smoothly.

  12. One area of your spec I have always been VERY wary of is Motherboard.

    I’ve always used Supermicro because they make Workstation Class mobos which have never failed me (in 15 years on PC).

    Trouble is, their Mobos aren’t Overclockable…..

    These super overclockable MBs (ASUS etc) leave me a little worried that yes, you can clock them and have fun doing so, but when you have tight deadlines, can you afford for the whole thing to go ‘pop’…… ??

    • Well, I know what you mean, but so far I’ve been pretty successful with consumer grade mobos and CPUs (knock on wood)

      I was considering supermicro X10SAE-O + Xeon E3-1270v3 for stability and reliability. But since I had trouble sourcing the parts, decided on the much more common gigabyte + 4770k

      • Hi Austris,

        When I looked at upgrading the bits of my machine (mobo, proc, ram, gpu), I was looking at;

        Asus P9X79 WS
        i7-3930x
        32Gb Crucial Ballistix,
        Quadro K4000 (did list GTX680 but not sure I want to go off the Autodesk certified list of graphics cards for 3DS Max).

        Also, how good etc will this GPU for our friend VRay (RT) is another important consideration.

        But I definitely agree with you re waiting. If you wait for the processor, you then have to wait for the mobo to support it, and then you’ll learn that there is a new gpu technology around the corner for that afterwards etc etc etc !!!

  13. Faisal Bukhari

    Hello Austris

    Well, I am not agree with your processor choice. I will suggest you buy at least Intel Core i7-3930K.

    Thanks

    • Hello Faisal,
      I have looked at some vray benchmarks, 3930k is only 5~10% faster than 4770k. But the price is more than 2 times bigger + more expensive motherboard.

      Is it worth it? Maybe, maybe not – depends on your budget. For me it’s not worth it.

  14. Farshid Monhasery

    hi Austris

    I loved your WS configuration.

    but how about AMD 8 cores ?

    some of them (black editions) have water cooling system so they can overclocked very good!
    its motherboard prices is lower also.

    but why do you limit your self by their cache? …. you are one of the best in CG world and you deserve the best PC !
    good luck my friend :)

  15. Hi Austris,

    You are going for pretty similar specs to what I am thinking about. Asus Gryphon z87 + 4770 + 16GB corsair xms3 (because I already have it) + at the moment I have gtx570 and don’t really plan to use gfx for rendering as the memory is still a problem unless I buy highly overpriced tesla, quadro or titan.

    Anyway I am still waiting not moving on with the buy as I can’t decide if there is any real point in overclocking cpu, that’s why I put 4770 not the “k” version.

    As you are planning on OCing yours can you post some benches on rendering some test scenes in Max and Zbrush with and without OC, I really would like to see how big is the difference and if it is worth the effort. Sure there are or definitely will be many tests on games but this is not the same as renderings because games mostly use one core only.

    So if it is not a trouble please post some results.

  16. Thanks Austis,

    I am also going to have one pc sooner. How about the Ati firepro v 4800 graphic card. Does it support my workstation. I am gonna buy :-
    1.Intel 3.2 GHz LGA2011 Core i7-3930K Processor
    2.MSI X79A-GD65
    3.Corsair Vengeance DDR3 8 Gb- 32 gb
    4.Cooler Master Thunder 700 Watts PSu(is this ok for this configuration )

    Will ati firepro will work on it. Let me know . Actully I already have this graphic card so I want to use it again.

  17. I think best choice for the price will be:
    AMD FX-8320 + OC to 4ghz.
    CPU 155$ with perfomance like Core i7 3770K for 330$
    Just look at last perfomance comparison (3ds max + Vray)
    http://www.behardware.com/articles/880-7/amd-fx-8350-review-is-amd-back.html

  18. spencer bigum

    Has anyone heard anything good about AMD’s latest video card – the Firepro w5000 or w7000? I’ve the hardest time find out if they work with Vray RT. So far their benchmarks seem promising, and the new Mac Pros will carry them coming out late this year. It sucks sacrificing power for stability and driver compatibility. Why cant we get both! I’d be interested to hear also if anyone has suggestions for a great GPU setup they are using now for maya,3dsmax,vray, mudbox,zbrush, and even mari.

    I’m jealous of your new rig Austris!

  19. Hi Austris
    Sorry, My English is very bad
    CPU Cooler: Noctua NH-D14
    Is too large,and when installed,not have enough space for install Ram

  20. hello sir,

    i just purchased my brand new machine before a week.
    My configration is i7 3770 processor gigabite z77D3Hmotherbiard 2 tb hard disk nvidia quadro 600 graphic card and cooler master cabinet and ram 16 gb corrsiar vengence . i made this cobnigration because i dont need to be overclocking.
    i think this a good enough machine for 3ds max…..

  21. Hi Austris,
    I don’t Know your Budget but
    take a look to Boxx Tecnologies Workstation instead of single Quadro 5000 or 4000.
    Very good the Samsung SSD 128 PRo
    (i have it) better is the 256 Gb

    Bye

  22. Hi I want to build a new workstation, researching I found a page that test gpu, processor, ram… according to them, in high gamma GPU, the Quadro 4000 that I had bought when assembling my previous machine, was ranked 72th while the Quadro 6000 was ranked 26th, which I think are very far from being among the best as it should be, according to nvidia gpu recommending these, left quite disappointed by this.

    http://www.videocardbenchmark.net/high_end_gpus.html

    As for processors, no doubt Intel is above AMD, but there is something very interesting about this page, it not only displays a list of the most potent products, but also can see a list of cost / benefit, in this case if AMD wins!!

    I hope this helps with your next workstation!!!

  23. Marcos Oliveira Martins

    Bless this post!

  24. I have i7990x assus rampage black edition 24gb ram 2sata x 1tb gtx980 4gb 1200 w power supply do I need to updrade? I’m using 3dmax .vray.autocad 3d

  25. Hi Austris,

    I have a gtx 680. Do you think the quadro fx4000 or fx5000 would give me a much better performance
    managing big models i max and if yes in what percentage? 10% or more. Is it worth to spend that much more money?
    Thanks

    • Hi Luigi,

      I purchased the ASUS GTX-680 DirectCU II 2Gb Video Card and I was pleasantly surprised when using this in Maya, it was quite good up until you started playing with very heavy scenes, It was only a temp install as I was waiting for the K5000 to arrive, once this was installed, the GTX-680 was long forgotten, the difference over a quadro card is outstanding, but what you have to think about is cost! The cost of the 680 graphics cards are relatively cheap nowadays, and for its cost, the GTX-680 is Well worth it, plus it has added bonus of CUDA Cores which After Effects and most adobe software loves, I have not tried 3DS Max on the K5000 yet because I also installed OSX when I built the new toy and now that I have to use Maya due to work, I have not been able to try 3DS due to no OSX version, but being an ex-3DS user, hopefully the same applies, Under Maya using one of my High Res Scenes on the 680 I sore a lag of 10 seconds or more when rotating an object with 1,917,874 faces, 1,752,088 Vertices and 3,601,543 Edges in full shaded mode around, the same model has no lag at all on the K5000 Card, it has been the best investment I have made in ages, but the cost does not really warrant it, unless you have the work coming in! hope this helps a bit!

  26. i would appreciate anyone comment.
    thanks

  27. hi austis

    why you don’t do some tuts about marvelous designer? this is a great piece of soft and there is a lach of tuts

  28. Metro Cúbico Digital

    Hi!
    Nice info! What about monitors, what is your best suggestion?

  29. Hi

    Video card.

    new GTX Titan 6Gb RAM, single GPU

    no lock for DP calculation.

    • It looks like a great choice for vrayrt or octane render, but not so great in viewport performance in max and mari (comments on mari forum say that it is too unstable for work)
      So yes, if it’s mainly for rendering it is quite good!

  30. I have just finished the same sort of thing, though slightly different, because of work I have had to move away from 3DS Max to Maya, and because of this I decided to build a MacOSX Platform PC (Hackintosh), although it started off being a Windows Build, I chose the following specs because at the time I thought that these were the best on offer at the cost and time.

    Intel i7 3.2GHz CPU
    64Gb 1600 MHz DDR3 RAM (Because RAM is so cheap nowadays)
    ASUS P9X79 Pro Motherboard
    Corsair H100i Cooler (So very Quiet)
    1 x 250 OCZ Agility SSD Drive
    CoolerMaster Cosmos II Case (Monster and not a desk happy case)
    PNY Quadro K5000 Card

    I know that this system is not really a Windows Platform, and to be fare, I am so Pro Windows that going OSX was a BIG step into the Dark Side for me, but boy have I come to love it!

    First off I was glad when I chose the 250Gb SSD, not just because it is fast, but when I first installed Windows 7 on this system, after finishing installing drivers, and updating, for some reason I ended up with just 90Gb of space left? I had not even installed Photoshop, Maya, or anything else!

    When I dumped this to at the time just play with a OSX install for the fun of it! I found that when OSX was finished installing and everything was working, I had only used up 4Gb of the 250Gb drives space!

    The other thing that got me was the speed of booting, with Windows from Power on to login prompt was just over 45 seconds, OSX was just 10 seconds…

    Now again I have to say that I have moved to Maya here and I know that you are so very much 3DS Max, but in the hope that Autodesk do one day release an OSX version, Maya on the OSX platform is so VERY MUCH faster than Windows Platform, I don’t see any lag, even the start up is just a few seconds instead of more like 30 seconds on the Windows platform, and even loading up some of my larger scenes took just seconds instead of minutes on the windows system, I know that my hardware has changed somewhat, but I have decided to stay with the Dark Side for now.

    Personally, go with the larger SSD and if you have room beside your desk (as it wont fit under) the CoolerMaster II case is well worth cost, it looks great, and clients have already commented on how impressed the system looks! All goes towards brownie points…

  31. Austris I don’t know if you seen my ealier post so I’ll ask again.

    Any chance you can do couple test renders with and without OC in both Zbrush and 3dsmax, just pick some scenes shipped with each program and make a time test, I really would like to see how much gain is there from OC itself.

    • I don’t have the machine here yet, but I have seen some vray benchmarks with stock and overclocked 4770k.

      The difference is ~15% faster renders when overclocking from 3.5GHz to 4.3GHz.
      So as you see, the gains are not that huge.

      • I have seen test on Sandy Bridge and the difference in Max mental ray, (one of the sample scenes) was w/o OC 203s and with OC 154s, which is about 24% faster. Since the price difference between haswell “k” and the other is just £20 in UK I think it is worth it.

  32. Can you please comment on this config especially GTX 780.

    Intel Core i7 4770K “Haswell” CPU
    Intel 520 Series 240GB SSD
    ASUS Sabertooth Z87 motherboard
    Fractal Design Define R4
    GeForce GTX 780 video card
    WD Green 3TB hard drive
    Corsair Vengeance 16GB DDR3 RAM
    Seasonic G Series 550W power supply
    bequiet! Dark Rock 2 CPU cooler
    Beyerdynamic Custom One Pro headphones
    Razer Deathadder 2013 gaming mouse
    Filco Majestouch Cherry MX Brown 104 key Stealth printed mech. keyboard
    ASUS Pro Art 248Q 24″ monitor.

  33. So you would recommend a GTX for 3dsmax? On my “home” pc i’m running a quadro fx580 and it’s good in 3dsmax 2009 with performance drivers. Tested on 3dsmax 2013 and it sucks. So the newest GTX cards are so good as quadros in the latest 3dsmax releases?

    Bests

    • As of today a GTX 680 is practically the same price as the new quadro k4000. Because 3dsmax hasnt released drivers specialized for the quadro series – I think a gtx card will perform the same as a quadro. If you use maya though – the quadro is the better option. But in maya 2014 the new viewport has a DX 11 option and a GTX card finally made it onto their list of certified cards to use! The gtx 690 $1000 bucks. So now it looks like you can switch mayas viewport depending on what card you have!

      Here is a great link breaking down what applications are ment for what cards. OpenGL = workstation card. Dx11 app = gtx card IMO. The results support this conclusion.

      http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/best-workstation-graphics-card,review-32728.html

      Incase you dont know autodesk inventor and autocad are DX11 based apps.

      Again its all about what apps you use. The bad part is for a 3d artist lets say I use 3dsmax and then I also use mudbox – a gtx card will be better than a quadro. But if I’m using something lik Mari I kinda screwed cus mari is openGL so a quadro would be better. I have a GTX 660 right now and I can run Mari but its by no means smooth at all.

      Its a tough call and you should research it if you dont want to waste money.

      • Thank you spencer for your feedback.
        Are you using 3dsmax for modeling or for rendering and what version please?

        Bests

        • spencer bigum

          Np I’m in the same boat trying to figure out where best to spend my money. Im debating on trying both cards and returning which ever one doesn’t work best!

          Right now Im on 2013 version of max with vray 2.3. Although I’ve read that 2014 version has better viewport performance. I havn’t had much issues with my stuff until I start adding tons of hair and fur or other particles. Or go over 10 million polygons then my machine starts to lag. Even with one particle setup though the machine starts to drag. Every once and awhile I do get weird fragments in the viewport due to my graphics card. I think it just depends mainly on how much you are on your machine and can deal with issues like hardware. If you were a big company that time = money so spending a little extra on a gpu that never goes down because its more expensive to pay the designer than it is to make a one time purchase can be well worth it in the long run.
          Anyways :)
          I mostly use 3dsmax but I’ve also been learning Maya. The new 2014 version I’ve setup so it has a similar modeling interface and shortcuts like Max. I like to render using max because the light and texture setup seems more logical than maya. I do want to try keyshot out though.

  34. My PC will be used purely for my 3d work and rendering. Which means high clock speed, more cores and threads + tons of RAM = better performance.
    i7 4700k processor is 3.5 clock speed to 3.9 turbo boost but 4 cores and 8 threads compare with zeon processor E5 2620 2 clock speed 2.6 turbo boost and 6 cores and 12 threads. Can i get a good suggestion for best rendering in 3d max 2013,V ray,Maya,photoshop autocad … Tom

  35. My PC will be used purely for my 3d work and rendering. Which means high clock speed, more cores and threads + tons of RAM = better performance.
    i7 4700k processor is 3.5 clock speed to 3.9 turbo boost but 4 cores and 8 threads compare with zeon processor E5 2620 2 clock speed 2.6 turbo boost and 6 cores and 12 threads. Can i get a good suggestion for best rendering in 3d max 2013,V ray,Maya,photoshop autocad … Tom

  36. Hi Austris,

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge with us!
    Could you also recommend the best monitor type for Visualisation work?
    I am in the process of buying a computer and monitor and it would Br great if you could suggest a good monitor too. Cheers.

    • I can recommend HP zr30w, great colors tiny pixels and lots of space to work with. There is also downside, price and because it is 2560×1600 resolution you need a strong specs to drive it. Like in Zbrush it is great but it really drains CPU power to drive all these pixOls.

  37. I have been using dell IPS monitors which have great color and also a wider viewing angle. They’ve gotten great reviews and I just got another one from Amazon for $257 – the newer Dell U2412M 24 in. You can’t beat it for quality/price.

  38. hey
    thanks for article
    i like worke in quite , without noise
    i think about water cooler or gas cooler ? what’s your id about noise?

  39. So, let us know your final configuration and the feeling when you rendered your firs images :-)

    Cheers,
    K.

  40. Hello Austris do you also work as a freelance artist? May be you could talk about how much to charge for arch viz… that’s the big question a lot of people ask themself!!!

  41. Hello Austris,

    For a person who cares much about the horse power of the CPU and also changes his old PC once every 5 to 7 years like me :) i would suggest you go with the 3930K.

    Get it and forget about it, and as for the extra cost, you can simply sacrifice the RAID10 setup as wasting 2x2TB of space to backup data is really to some what level not that important, instead manually backup the data on an external backup drive, and also pump up the PSU a bit, 750W would be best.

    Good luck, and congrats on your new PC in advance. :)

  42. I’ve just upgraded to 4770k + asus gryphon z87 and tried a test renders with the scene grabbed from Jeff Pattons website http://jeffpatton.net/2012/07/mental-ray-caustics-on-matte-surface/ I

    Rendering parameters:
    – Resolution [2000×1292]
    – FG [draft]
    – Caustics photons per sample [100]
    – GI [off]
    – Samples per pixel [1, 16]
    – Filter [box]

    on 3.5ghz 3min 10s (190s)
    on 4.1ghz 2min 54s (174s)
    it is 8.42% in rendering time decrease

    4h scene should render about 20min quicker.

    I wonder how much quicker would it be at 4.5GHz. I know extremely it can go to 4.8GHz but it requires a lot of effort and luck… Linearly thinking 4.5GHz should give me another 66.6% of the previous decrease so another 13.32min on 4h scene giving a total of 33min quicker (about 13.75%).

    What do you think guys, is it worth buying CLU and delid a CPU to get 13min?

  43. Hi Austris,
    Great Blog,,, make me take the plunge and buy a new PC. Arrive yesterday and waiting for me to install some software. Spec is in small form for transportation to office when required:-

    BitFenix Prodigy Black
    Intel Core i7 4770K Haswell Processor Overclocked
    Corsair Hydro H60 High Performance Liquid CPU Cooler
    Quiet Cooling Fans Upgrade Pack
    Gigabyte Z87N-WIFI M-ITX Motherboard
    16GB Corsair PC3-12800 1600MHz DDR3 Memory
    NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 3GB Graphics Card
    250GB Samsung 840 Series Solid State Drive
    3000GB 7200rpm Hard Disk – 6Gbps
    Corsair Ultra Low Noise 600W PSU

    Bought from Chillblast as I have no intention of building my own and frying expensive gear!!

    I can’t wait to get it set up.

    • I’m considering to set up my system and I have in mind same CPU and GPU.
      Are u satisfied? Fast rendering, smooth viewport?

  44. what about gpu computing?

  45. Hi Austris,
    Is there any change for my new pc,please suggest any change.

    1.intel i7 4700k or i7 4930k ivybridge which one is better? i would like to buy.(Socket 1150 and 1155 will support this motherboard)
    2.Motherboard – GA-z87x ud3h
    3.Graphic card – quadro 4000k 3gb 2nd and 3rd which i already purchased
    4.Inter drive – intel or Samsung SSD 335 or 520 series 240gb
    5.Case – HAF X 942 cooler master
    6.Ram – Cosair Vengence 1600 or 1866Mhz (8×4) 32gb ram which one is supporting
    7.power supply – Cooler master 750w

    Above mention are my requiremnt for my new PC which is going to build in 20days of time. (3d max 2013,Vray 2.40.03
    version,Photoshop cs6 only for 3d rendering works.

  46. Hi Austris

    very good post and I enjoy visiting your page often for the great tips. I was looking at a pure render machine for a couple of walkthrough projects I have (3ds Max +vray) and was looking at a real “brute force” to run these as fast as it is possible.

    I saw Tom’s post recommending E5 2620with 6 cores and 12 threads. I was recently recommended this and wanted to check if its a good buy. What I have in mind is actually a dual processors making it 12 cores + 24 threads. This is going to be very expensive, so I wanted a good feedback if someone has this config.

    Any suggestions on this?

  47. Hi guys, this is a great tool to test your hardware performance so you know what to update!!!

    http://www.passmark.com/download/pt_download.htm

  48. Does anyone here has experience with a Quadro K600? It is the most affordable Quadro card that i was recommended.

    I already bought it, so i just have to build my own PC… But i want to know if someone here has used it and a little feedback.

    My other components are also i7 4770 K, 16 gb Ram, etc..

  49. I saw this post just now, but I work in the 3D sector and I create workstation for 2D/3D graphic.
    I do not know if you’ve already bought those components, I advise these changes:

    – CPU: Intel Core i7-4820K (I think for render it’s better to move towards the X79, for a variety of reasons such as ability to future upgrade at 6-core CPU, quad channel memory and SLI at full bandwidth PCI-E 3.0, for render like V-Ray RT Cuda, iRay and Octane);
    – Motherboard: Asrock X79 Extreme6;
    – RAM: 32GB DDR3 1866Mhz Quad Channel (compatible with motherboard);
    – SSD: the version with 256GB has more speed in write;
    – PSU: for a good workstation I suggest a power supply at least 80 Plus Gold, brands like Corsair or Seasonic;

    With this configuration, you can safely stay under your budget and have the option to upgrade to a 6 core CPU in the future, exploiting the potential of the X79 :)

  50. Hey Vis,

    Was just watching a new video I bought at discount on your sale – killer job as always keep it up! Anyways I wanted to ask what was the final system you decided to go with?

    Thanks again,
    Spencer

  51. Apostolos Tsivolas

    Just bought and ready to build:
    Cpu Intel Core i7-4930K
    Board ASUS X79-DELUXE
    Gpu Asus GeForce GTX 780 3GB GDDR5
    Case Corsair Carbide Series 500R Midi Black
    RAM Corsair Vengeance Pro 32GB (4x8GB) DDR3
    SSD Samsung 840 PRO Series 256GB
    Cooler Corsair Hydro Series H100i

    my only question is which corsair psu? 750? 850?

    thanx

    • Better to err on the side of caution – a stronger psu will not cause any problems or larger power draw, but will be more reliable.
      I’d go for 850

  52. Hi,
    I remember reading this post last year.

    Do have have any updates for us? Did you build it and get it working?

    I’m in need of a good PC build and have never done it before, though think I’m up for the challenge!

    My budget would be modest too, no more than £1000 (exc. operating system).

    My laptop I use now, while a good laptop, struggles with viewport navigation, and I need a spare PC to work on while rendering.

    So, any updates on what you did would be very welcomed, for myself and other I’m sure.

    Thanks, and have a nice weekend,
    David

  53. Thanks for important information.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *