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Thread: Hardware requirements

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    Default Hardware requirements

    I've been having some issues with autocad so I posted a ticket with Autodesk which replied as I suspected that my system isn't handling the work I'm giving it.
    I currently have:
    Intel Core i5-8400 CPU
    16 GB ram
    Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 3GB Video card
    Intel SSDPEKKW 512GB HARD DRIVE
    I am using fairly large files, my current one is 11,699KB and working in 3D.
    Does anyone have recommendations on what I can suggest to the owner as an upgrade that won't give him a heart attack?
    Obviously I want the system to work for the next few years so it will need to have enough spare power to handle growth.
    Thanks
    Bruce

  2. #2
    Programming Moderator BlackBox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hardware requirements

    Not sure what you paid for that workstation, but from a productivity standpoint, it seems under-provisioned.

    We use Civil 3D, which is a little house of horrors (aka 'feed me') when it comes to consuming resources to even come close to vanilla AutoCAD-like performance, but I feel that our 2+ year old workstations still aren't enough.

    Here are our workstation specs (+/- $2,500/ea back in July 2017):

    Dell Precision 3620
    Intel Quad-Core i7-7700K @ 4.2Ghz
    Samsung 970 Pro NVMe/M.2 SSD
    64 GB DDR4 Kingston HyperX Predator RAM, 2400Mhz @ CL17
    8 GB NVIDIA Quadro P4000 GPU (which is overkill, as we only see +/- 20% utilization; most graphics are done on the CPU)


    Here are some recent benchmarks:

    https://forums.autodesk.com/t5/civil...010688#M406197



    While better workstations obviously cost more, politely remind your manager/IT/etc that for every 15 mins saved per user per day, that extrapolates to an extra 1.5 weeks of potential billable time the company gains.

    I came up with 15 mins after doing some testing here, with our slow Gigabit network and slow server running RAID 5... That 15 mins is time we saved just opening, saving or plotting drawings to PDF, not even doing our actual work. Your estimations may be different, but you should know what those are.

    To continue the example: saving 15 mins per day x 5 work days per week x 50 work weeks per year (assumes 2 weeks vacation) == 3,750 mins or 62.5 hours or 7.8 work days or 1.5 work weeks of potential billable time per user per year... Now, ask your manager to consider what the company could invoice for that much billable time per user and how many users your company now wants to buy workstations for?

    An extra $1,000 per workstation (or more) is a pittance, when considering how much the company could gain in ROI in the first year of production and it helps with user morale too, as users aren't so frustrated, angrily waiting for drawings to open, etc using really slow workstations. Haha

    HTH
    "How we think determines what we do, and what we do determines what we get."

    Sincpac C3D ~ Autodesk Exchange Apps

    Computer Specs:
    Dell Precision 3620, Core i7-7700K 4.2GHz, 64GB RAM, Samsung 970 Pro M.2, 8GB NVIDIA Quadro P4000

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    Default Re: Hardware requirements

    I am the drafting department.The computer was here when I started but we are looking at the possibility of a custom upgrade of the CPU, motherboard and ram, and graphics card. Yes I know that doesn't leave much and I know I'll have to check the power supply as well, but I just rebuilt my home computer with i9 9900K, 2080ti graphics card, and 250Gb M2 SSD, as well as the other peripheral hardware for about $3000 which is much cheaper than an off the shelf unit. That may or may not be overkill for a workstation.

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    Default Re: Hardware requirements

    I have noticed that if I select an item then change view using the view cube the new view is ready in a couple of seconds. If I simply change the view using the view cube it can take 1.5 minutes for the view to be ready. If I use the view manager the change is almost instantaneous.

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    Default Re: Hardware requirements

    I am not familiar with workstation graphics cards. Can anyone suggest what would be a suitable card for my requirements?
    Bear in mind that we may switch to Inventor at some stage.
    Thanks

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    Super Moderator rkmcswain's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hardware requirements

    Quote Originally Posted by bruce13557 View Post
    I am not familiar with workstation graphics cards. Can anyone suggest what would be a suitable card for my requirements?
    Bear in mind that we may switch to Inventor at some stage.
    Thanks
    Unfortunately, that's kind of like saying "I need a car to get from here to there, which one should I buy?"
    We run Civil 3D like BlackBox above, but we are pretty much standardized on NVIDIA P1000 (~$350) cards, as opposed to the P4000 (~$750) he is running.
    Budget is a huge question. Whether or not Autodesk has tested the card and recommends it is another huge issue. beyond that, what can you get the best price for, the best support, etc.
    R.K. McSwain | CAD Panacea |

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    Programming Moderator BlackBox's Avatar
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    Default Re: Hardware requirements

    I can tell you that the P4000 is overkill for Civil 3D (not sure if Inventor better utilizes GPU), as we rarely see +/- 20% GPU utilization because most of the in-CAD graphics are done on the chip (aka CPU), which is why CPU base clock speed (being that AutoCAD products are single-threaded apps) and RAM speed/capacity are more important for those that want better CAD performance.

    Good news is, I don't have to spend any money on GPU for our next workstations - just migrate these GPUs to new system units - which means more money for better CPU, RAM + potential upgrade to 25 Gigabit network next (now that the new server specs I just put together move our bottleneck from server to 1 Gigabit network; looking at 3,000 MB Read & 1,500 MB Write which is up from 118 MB Read/Write at the server and will only go up each time we add a new pair of physical SAS SSD disks to the RAID 10 data array... And I'm getting us a 58% discount! Haha).

    The main benefit we get from running a larger GPU, is the number of displays we can run well... With our old 3 GB GPUs running dual monitors was 'alright' but now I can easily run three monitors without a noticeable decrease in on-screen (not in-CAD) performance.

    Cheers
    "How we think determines what we do, and what we do determines what we get."

    Sincpac C3D ~ Autodesk Exchange Apps

    Computer Specs:
    Dell Precision 3620, Core i7-7700K 4.2GHz, 64GB RAM, Samsung 970 Pro M.2, 8GB NVIDIA Quadro P4000

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