Recommendations for a rendering computer?

2

Comments

  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited December 1969

    Found "the" computer store here in the city. Had a nice chat with a knowledgeable salesperson who'll be emailing some specs over.
    Sounds like he can put together exactly whatever one wants.
    i7
    4 or 6 core?
    Motherboard can take 32G with W7Pro
    openGL NVIDIA card of somekind with lots of memory [I also make home movies so need a good vid card with memory for that program]
    2Tb harddrive.
    fans
    750W
    Battery BackUp tower

    anything else to inquire about for it?

    For the money, much better deal than the laptop!


    All those specs are fine for most people, the only thing I would say to keep in mind is that in a year or two worth of time these specs could become somewhat obsolete. In other words don't buy such a system thinking it'll be state of the art for years to come. Technology advances too fast these days to think like that anymore. On the good side though given where Bryce is in developement such a system will remain plenty powerful enough for most people for years to come, in terms of using it for Bryce.

  • patience55patience55 Posts: 6,213
    edited December 1969

    Gedd said:
    If it's being built and you plan on doing GPU rendering in the future, see about a system board (motherboard) that supports dual video cards for future expansion capabilities.

    Also, have the salesperson list the parts they plan on putting into it and go to newegg and amazon and look up the parts, read the reviews to make sure those are the parts you want. All manufacturers have good and bad models of anything they make so the only way to know is to look up each specific model. Look at the # of reviews, the # of bad reviews, and what the people who are giving bad reviews are complaining about. No item will be perfect but it will help avoid lemons.

    Just got the list and that's a great idea!

  • patience55patience55 Posts: 6,213
    edited December 1969

    Found "the" computer store here in the city. Had a nice chat with a knowledgeable salesperson who'll be emailing some specs over.
    Sounds like he can put together exactly whatever one wants.
    i7
    4 or 6 core?
    Motherboard can take 32G with W7Pro
    openGL NVIDIA card of somekind with lots of memory [I also make home movies so need a good vid card with memory for that program]
    2Tb harddrive.
    fans
    750W
    Battery BackUp tower

    anything else to inquire about for it?

    For the money, much better deal than the laptop!

    All those specs are fine for most people, the only thing I would say to keep in mind is that in a year or two worth of time these specs could become somewhat obsolete. In other words don't buy such a system thinking it'll be state of the art for years to come. Technology advances too fast these days to think like that anymore. On the good side though given where Bryce is in developement such a system will remain plenty powerful enough for most people for years to come, in terms of using it for Bryce.

    Oh I know ... like a car it devalues as it leaves the lot!

    However I think it should work well for the next couple of years for me.

    From the quote list:

    Gigabyte (GV-N66TOC-2GD) GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB GDDR5 | 1032 MHz Base Core Clock, 1111 MHz Boost Clock, 6008 MHz Memory | PCI Express 3.0, Dual Display, DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI, DisplayPort

    G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 32GB (4x8GB) DDR3 1600MHz CL10 Quad Channel Kit (F3-12800CL10Q-32GBXL)

    Corsair Professional Series Gold AX750 Fully-Modular 750 Watt 80 PLUS Gold Certified Power Supply (CMPSU-750AX)

    Asus P8Z77-V LX Socket 1155 Intel Z77 Chipset Dual channel DDR3 2400(O.C.)/2200(O.C.)/2133(O.C.)/1866/1600/1333/1066 MHz 1x PCI-Express 3.0 x16 1x PCI-Express 2.0 x16 GLAN 8-CH High Definition Audio 4x SATA 3.0Gb/s 2x SATA 6.0Gb/s 2x eSATA 6Gb/s 4x USB 3.0 10x USB 2.0 HDMI/DVI/VGA ATX

    Seagate Barracuda (ST2000DM001) SATA3 6.0Gb/s 2TB 64MB Cache

    LG BH14NS40 14x Blu-ray Writer, Support M-Disc, BDXL (128GB) Disc, Black, SATA| Featuring 16x DVD Write, 4MB Buffer

    Intel Core i7-3770 Quad- Core Socket 1155, 3.4Ghz, 8MB L3 Cache, 22nm (Retail Boxed) Gen3 (BX80637I73770)

    ...............................

    Nothing is finalized yet so if any of the above should be changed this is a good time to make mention.

  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited December 1969

    Oh I know ... like a car it devalues as it leaves the lot!

    However I think it should work well for the next couple of years for me.

    From the quote list:

    Gigabyte (GV-N66TOC-2GD) GeForce GTX 660 Ti 2GB GDDR5 | 1032 MHz Base Core Clock, 1111 MHz Boost Clock, 6008 MHz Memory | PCI Express 3.0, Dual Display, DVI-I, DVI-D, HDMI, DisplayPort

    G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 32GB (4x8GB) DDR3 1600MHz CL10 Quad Channel Kit (F3-12800CL10Q-32GBXL)

    Corsair Professional Series Gold AX750 Fully-Modular 750 Watt 80 PLUS Gold Certified Power Supply (CMPSU-750AX)

    Asus P8Z77-V LX Socket 1155 Intel Z77 Chipset Dual channel DDR3 2400(O.C.)/2200(O.C.)/2133(O.C.)/1866/1600/1333/1066 MHz 1x PCI-Express 3.0 x16 1x PCI-Express 2.0 x16 GLAN 8-CH High Definition Audio 4x SATA 3.0Gb/s 2x SATA 6.0Gb/s 2x eSATA 6Gb/s 4x USB 3.0 10x USB 2.0 HDMI/DVI/VGA ATX

    Seagate Barracuda (ST2000DM001) SATA3 6.0Gb/s 2TB 64MB Cache

    LG BH14NS40 14x Blu-ray Writer, Support M-Disc, BDXL (128GB) Disc, Black, SATA| Featuring 16x DVD Write, 4MB Buffer

    Intel Core i7-3770 Quad- Core Socket 1155, 3.4Ghz, 8MB L3 Cache, 22nm (Retail Boxed) Gen3 (BX80637I73770)

    ...............................

    Nothing is finalized yet so if any of the above should be changed this is a good time to make mention.

    I've had lots of bad experiences with Seagate and so have many other users. To be fair though I've seen people who rave about their seagate drives. Personally I prefer Western Digital for hard drives and they're usually in that same ballpark price wise with Seagate. I would definately read the reviews on that one first. Everything else sounds good on the surface and the brand names are quality names, Gigabyte, Asus, Corsair, LG, Intel. However one concern is that Corsair has it's good reputation in Memory, I'm not sure how they are on power supplies so you may end up paying more for the name then you should, I would check reviews on that one too. A solid brand name for power supplies is thermaltake.

  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,473
    edited September 2012

    All manufacturers lately have had good and bad. Going on a manufacturer's name is not enough, one *must* research the particular model also.

    As for the Seagate drives, yes they seem to have a little higher bad rate but all drives suffer from this to some extent anymore. I buy Seagate myself because they are usually the cheapest per gig, but I buy 2 so I can image things, and I make sure I use/test them a lot during the initial return time. This is where working with a local shop should be beneficial, *if* they have good warranties, stand behind their warranties, and have a decent turnaround. Waiting weeks for a system happens all too often and can be very frustrating.

    Consider a solid state drive for the main (not data) drive, it doesn't have to be big since it is for software only... 128gb would probably suffice, and consider keeping data on a separate standard hd.

    The real issue here imo is to make sure one has a good backup system and back up as often as one doesn't want to loose anything. Get imaging software, such as Acronis and *after installing/updating everything but before using it, image the system. Imaging is not the same thing as backing up.. Imaging is the system, backing up is the data. The default when imaging is often data and system which is retarded, don't do this.

    As for memory, get memtest and do a burn in test, it's free and easy to run. It is well worth researching "burn in testing" on google and running some tests.

    Post edited by Gedd on
  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,473
    edited December 1969

    Gedd said:
    I would reccommend against using a laptop as a rendering computer...

    Donno, a laptop system could work great.

    Here ya go ;)

  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited December 1969

    Gedd said:
    Gedd said:
    I would reccommend against using a laptop as a rendering computer...

    Donno, a laptop system could work great.

    Here ya go ;)

    Is there a video showing the extreme poverty one can expect building such a system? I mean seeing as how decent video cards are generally the most expensive componant these days. ;)

  • patience55patience55 Posts: 6,213
    edited December 1969

    Computer purchase made!

    And guess what! Found another Brycer!!! He hasn't been here for awhile and didn't know, now does, about 7Pro.

    Computer should be ready to pick up next week. Part of it all is already here ... nice BIG screen. Yes! I'm happy.
    Thank you everybody for the suggestions.

  • Sara16Sara16 Posts: 0
    edited September 2012

    I see the OP has already purchased. But I guess if someone else out there with the same question should stumble on this thread it may be of benefit to them.

    chohole said:
    Just popping in to say that I know that Patience is not resident in the US, so any reccomendations about good stores to buy from, even Web based stores, may not be helpful.

    There is a way to overcome the cost of shipment?... don't ship......

    .... a friend from Australia got an excellent PC custom build specifically for professional audio and graphics/video editing use with help (step-by-step guidance) from experienced professionals in the US.

    This is how.... they provide a list of recommended hardware specific to the requirements (intended use) with consideration to budget without compromising quality. If the Aussie is experienced enough he/she can build it themselves with step-by-step guidance from the US. The Aussie simply buys the hardware in Australia and either build it themselves or have someone else build it for them in Australia.

    Having step-by-step guidance from professionals is actually a great learning experience. Having total system builds to upgrade hardware's all done easily, efficiently and successfully thanks to their exemplary services. Seriously, honestly the PC I got years ago is truly rock solid, the temperature is always well within safety and the whole system is so quiet I forget it's still running, seriously I have to look to see if the light is on.

    Post edited by Sara16 on
  • patience55patience55 Posts: 6,213
    edited September 2012

    Got something with this setup called a 'gaming mouse'. Cute 2 colour cord! [black and orange].
    edited to remove question ... no I don't to install the software for the extra buttons to work.

    And the keyboard, whoa! Okay, I didn't break any off yet; but one is supposed to be able to remove the keys for cleaning, yes. What thoughtful designers :-)

    Post edited by patience55 on
  • MelanieLMelanieL Posts: 1,796
    edited December 1969

    I notice Horo has responded also, and having read what he put, it occurs to me to point out that my application is somewhat specialised for a my hobby because I am most interested in researching for Bryce development. This is very demanding, because of the number of long running tests performed. But I still consider myself a hobbyist, just one that is particularly cruel to his computers.

    So the most sensible answer, in terms of cost effectiveness, is to consider upgrading the cooling for your desktop PC. You have the advantage of owning a laptop, so you can use that while your desktop is tied up rendering. I do everything on one PC, fore purely economic reasons, and control CPU usage via the Task Manager - switching the allocation of CPU cores around when I need to get on with something and let the render tick over in the background. So that is another strategy.

    Sorry to revive such an elderly thread, but I've just bought a new PC and was reading threads about rendering performance and found this one. I have a question: where in "Task Manager" can you control CPU usage? You mention "switching the allocation of CPU cores" but I don't see how to do this (and my "Windows 7 Inside Out" book is not help either.
    Thanks for any help...

  • HoroHoro Posts: 4,347
    edited December 1969

    Task manager, process tab, find Bryce in the list, select it, right click, in the context menu priority. Sorry, I haven't got the proper English names, I'd have to start up the machine with an English opsys. Hopefully, you can locate it with this description. By the way, I have it at Normal.

  • MelanieLMelanieL Posts: 1,796
    edited December 1969

    Thanks - I didn't think of right-clicking!

  • Roland4Roland4 Posts: 0
    edited November 2012

    A few months ago I have upgraded my PC with new Mainboard, 8 GB RAM (max. 16), intel core i5 2500 k (max. i7 3770 k), graphic card nvidia GTX 550 TI 3 GB, Win 7 64 bit.

    Previously I had

    core 2 quad 8300, 4 GB RAM (max. 16), graphic card nvidia GT 7300 512 MB, Win 7 32 bit.


    Now I should be happy (and I'm happy because I can now use Bryce full potential), but I believe that my PC could be even a bit faster and now i have the following options:

    RAM max = 16 GB

    HD = SSD with 250 GB

    and / or a new CPU = core i7 3770 k

    Now my question:

    Is it absolutely necessary to upgrade the cpu again, as the i5 2500 k is relatively new ?

    I read it in some test that the i7 3770 k (300 €) should not be much faster than the i5 2500k.

    Please help me to find a good solution

    Post edited by Roland4 on
  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited December 1969

    Roland4 said:
    A few months ago I have upgraded my PC with new Mainboard, 8 GB RAM (max. 16), intel core i5 2500 k (max. i7 3770 k), graphic card nvidia GTX 550 TI 3 GB, Win 7 64 bit.

    Previously I had

    core 2 quad 8300, 4 GB RAM (max. 16), graphic card nvidia GT 7300 512 MB, Win 7 32 bit.


    Now I should be happy (and I'm happy because I can now use Bryce full potential), but I believe that my PC could be even a bit faster and now i have the following options:

    RAM max = 16 GB

    HD = SSD with 250 GB

    and / or a new CPU = core i7 3770 k

    Now my question:

    Is it absolutely necessary to upgrade the cpu again, as the i5 2500 k is relatively new ?

    I read it in some test that the i7 3770 k (300 €) should not be much faster than the i5 2500k.

    Please help me to find a good solution

    Well as far as Bryce goes the additional RAM shouldn't make a difference since it can't access more then roughly 3.5 GB (with the LAA tool). It could however make a difference in other things you do. Same for the SSD but because Bryce does everything in memory. I'm not really that up on Intel CPU's to really answer the question of the differences between i5 vs i7 but it seems like that's the only upgrade option you've presented that would make any noticeable difference even if it's small. Keep in mind though I'm just talking in terms of bryce. Any of these upgrades could make bigger impacts in other areas. If this were an upgrade as a gift and the giver could easily afford any of these options then I'd go with either the CPU or the SSD as those are likely much more expensive then the memory. If it had to come out of my own pocket then I'd probably go with the memory but I say that mostly because I'm poor. :)

  • Roland4Roland4 Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    @LordHardDriven

    Thank´s for the answer. But in the moment it is not a question of money but if it makes any sense. If Bryce can not more use as 4 GB RAM, then it´s better to take a SSD or a other CPU.
    But the CPU I7 3770 K is a little problem for me to. Some say this CPU is slower as the I5 2500 K. And so I would rather decide for a good SSD.

  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited December 1969

    Roland4 said:
    @LordHardDriven

    Thank´s for the answer. But in the moment it is not a question of money but if it makes any sense. If Bryce can not more use as 4 GB RAM, then it´s better to take a SSD or a other CPU.
    But the CPU I7 3770 K is a little problem for me to. Some say this CPU is slower as the I5 2500 K. And so I would rather decide for a good SSD.

    Well like I said, I'm not that well versed in the differences between the i5 and i7 but assuming what you said is correct then I would agree that the SSD is the better choice of the two.

  • patience55patience55 Posts: 6,213
    edited December 1969

    I have no idea how much difference it makes with Bryce itself, however when I was making my purchase for only a few dollars more it was recommended to get the W7Pro as it handles [? if that's the correct term] more memory than the regular W7. In other words, it was possible to add more memory to the computer than the OS could use ... but Pro could make it all usable. It works beautifully, haven't even used the LAA [so far] for Bryce 'cause everything is quite fast.

  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited December 1969

    I have no idea how much difference it makes with Bryce itself, however when I was making my purchase for only a few dollars more it was recommended to get the W7Pro as it handles [? if that's the correct term] more memory than the regular W7. In other words, it was possible to add more memory to the computer than the OS could use ... but Pro could make it all usable. It works beautifully, haven't even used the LAA [so far] for Bryce 'cause everything is quite fast.

    Anything above 4GB's really makes little difference to Bryce since Bryce without the LAA tool can only access 2GB's and with the LAA tool approx. 3.5GB's. Now if all one had was 4GB's then more memory might still be helpful if one was planning on running a bunch of other programs at the same time as when they were running Bryce. Since the OP has 8GB's already I doubt jumping up to 16GB's is going to make that much difference. Typically people who actually need that much memory are more intimately aware of what adding hardware can do for them and as such aren't likely to be asking the kinds of questions the OP did.

  • Roland4Roland4 Posts: 0
    edited November 2012

    I have make a test.

    I have bought from a friend a small (64 GB) SSD drive and have the Windows installed on it. As you can see in the screenshot, the window power index is now higher than before (5,9 --> 7,2). Windows starts very fast (ca. 10 seconds). Other programs start now even faster, with one exception: Bryce. On render times, nothing has changed.

    PowerIndex1.jpg
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    Post edited by Roland4 on
  • LordHardDrivenLordHardDriven Posts: 917
    edited November 2012

    Roland4 said:
    I have make a test.

    I have bought from a friend a small (64 GB) SSD drive and have the Windows installed on it. As you can see in the screenshot, the window power index is now higher than before (5,9 --> 7,2). Windows starts very fast (ca. 10 seconds). Other programs start now even faster, with one exception: Bryce. On render times, nothing has changed.

    I believe that is due to the fact that everything in Bryce is done in memory. If so then the only way to speed up bryce would be if your memory wasn't the fastest your system supports and you replace it with the fastest memory your system supports or you build a faster system.

    Post edited by LordHardDriven on
  • patience55patience55 Posts: 6,213
    edited December 1969

    I have no idea how much difference it makes with Bryce itself, however when I was making my purchase for only a few dollars more it was recommended to get the W7Pro as it handles [? if that's the correct term] more memory than the regular W7. In other words, it was possible to add more memory to the computer than the OS could use ... but Pro could make it all usable. It works beautifully, haven't even used the LAA [so far] for Bryce 'cause everything is quite fast.

    Anything above 4GB's really makes little difference to Bryce since Bryce without the LAA tool can only access 2GB's and with the LAA tool approx. 3.5GB's. Now if all one had was 4GB's then more memory might still be helpful if one was planning on running a bunch of other programs at the same time as when they were running Bryce. Since the OP has 8GB's already I doubt jumping up to 16GB's is going to make that much difference. Typically people who actually need that much memory are more intimately aware of what adding hardware can do for them and as such aren't likely to be asking the kinds of questions the OP did.

    ;-) I am the OP. Thread has gone off abit. Others are inquiring in here as well, which is fine by me.

  • Roland4Roland4 Posts: 0
    edited November 2012

    Now i have upgradet my system with 16 GB RAM and a 240 GB SSD drive. The performance index from my system you can see in the picture. As you can see, the SSD drive is with 7,9 the strongest component in my system, the RAM the next. Render times have changed nowhere. The workflow is now everywhere great. The SSD ist from OCZ.

    Leistungsindex.jpg
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    Post edited by Roland4 on
  • edited December 1969

    Might be an interesting experiment, if you have masses of RAM, to try running multiple Bryce Lightening render sessions in Windows as Virtual Machines ... the outcome really will depend on if the rendering on your PC is RAM limited or CPU limited. You can expect to see a 5-10% hit on performance per VM due to the virtualisation overhead, but if you have 8Gb upwards of RAM then the effective doubling of CPU utilisation may net an overall 50-80% gain in overal rendering speed if you have a powerful enough CPU and memory bandwidth.

  • Peter FulfordPeter Fulford Posts: 277
    edited December 1969

    Roland4 said:
    Now i have upgradet my system with 16 GB RAM and a 240 GB SSD drive. The performance index from my system you can see in the picture. As you can see, the SSD drive is with 7,9 the strongest component in my system, the RAM the next. Render times have changed nowhere. The workflow is now everywhere great.

    That's a fine system, and although the larger RAM and SSD will not improve Bryce render speeds they will bring great benefit to your computing experience overall.

    Without making big changes to hardware (motherboard, CPU, RAM) your remaining method of improving Bryce render speed is to overclock your CPU (and maybe your motherboard and RAM too, depending on which method used). And the 2500K is a superb overclocker (much better than the 3770K). The only hardware you will need is a good CPU cooler. Other than that you need research and caution.

    The web is loaded with information on overclocking the 2500K, and you can take your time to learn before even considering the idea. A moderate overclock of this chip is very safe and will bring a worthwhile render speed improvement, for little cost.

  • edited December 1969

    I see Patience has ordered a machine now, but maybe also worth reading this earlier thread:

    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/discussion/6942/

    Separately, thinking "bang for bucks" and purpose ... if one has a good solid fast machine as a workstation then what might one do to improve render performance. With Bryce's memory limits, the answer is probably not to buy a modern pricey CPU with very large addressing, but maybe instead smaller machines using much cheaper N-1 technology CPUs. Doing a quick Google for bargain PCs, I found loads with decent CPUs, 4Gb RAM and cheap as chips prices so much that one could get 3 of them for the price of a decent modern desktop, e.g.

    http://www.computerbargains.co.uk/shop/catalog/category_255_Desktop_PCs_page_1.html

    Throw a cheap multiport KVM switch in the price and you don't even need to get more keyboards or screens.

  • Roland4Roland4 Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    _ PJF _ said:

    Without making big changes to hardware (motherboard, CPU, RAM) your remaining method of improving Bryce render speed is to overclock your CPU (and maybe your motherboard and RAM too, depending on which method used). And the 2500K is a superb overclocker (much better than the 3770K). The only hardware you will need is a good CPU cooler. Other than that you need research and caution.

    Thank you very much for this tip, but i dont want overclock my CPU or other components. I love my new PC and it took a long time until I could buy a new and modern computer, because my dog was very sick and has cost me a fortune (3000 € (i love my dog)) and I do not know what else is everything coming. I am now very happy with my new computer.

  • HoroHoro Posts: 4,347
    edited December 1969

    Roland4 said:
    I am now very happy with my new computer.

    And this is really the only thing that matters.

  • Roland4Roland4 Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Horo said:
    Roland4 said:
    I am now very happy with my new computer.

    And this is really the only thing that matters.

    Sure, because before I had one of the slowest computer. Q 8300, nvidia 7300 and 2 GB DDR 2 800 RAM-memory.

  • Peter FulfordPeter Fulford Posts: 277
    edited December 1969

    Roland4 said:

    Thank you very much for this tip, but i dont want overclock my CPU or other components.

    That's a perfectly reasonable and sensible approach for a prized possession bought at considerable cost.

    Still, overclocking might be worth considering in a couple of years when the computer is less modern and less valuable. It will boost the system closer to the performance of the mainstream CPUs of 2014/15, and be much less financially risky.


    ...before I had one of the slowest computer. Q 8300, nvidia 7300 and 2 GB DDR 2 800 RAM-memory.

    Your old, slow computer had a faster processor than my current machine with its Q6600. On the rare occasions when I can give Bryce a good workout, I just overclock the system to deal with long renders. Upping the speed from 2.4Ghz to a moderate 3.2 Ghz gives a Windows result as shown in the March 2010 screen capture below. Not too bad for free, and enough for my light use nowadays.


    It is good to be in a happy computing and Bryceing place. To keep yourself there, don't forget to backup your files!

    And many happy walks with your doggie. :-)

    q6600.jpg
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