How to Build a Carrara Workstation Yourself
In this world of 3r art and animation, we eventually crave a computer that can help us work faster, more stable, and all around more efficient. For the last few years I’ve been enjoying building my own PCs, which has brought me the good fortune of getting the actual computer components that I really want as well as keeping my pay out much lower than it could have been otherwise. It may seem scary the first time, I know I surely was intimidated, but when it all comes down to it, the process is much easier than building a good model or assembling a 1200 piece puzzle. You just need to know where and how to look for all of the parts that you need, and use good sense during assembly not to create or find any static electricity along the way. In fact, if you lack the dexterity to do the actual assembly process, perhaps someone you know would be willing to lend a hand. It really is as simply as plugging everything in where it goes.
As with most of what I can write about, this really only pertains to Windows-Based computing, as that’s all I know. To my knowledge, a MacOS machine has to be purchased that way, and I know nothing of Linux, but the main building procedure should be the same.
If this starts to sound like an advertisement for Newegg.com, it isn’t. Just that, during my research, I tried to find a place that had everything I need to buy so that I could save some cash on shipping - besides, it’s really nice to get all of the stuff right around the same time. Believe me, once you start down this process, you start to get this exciting feeling in your gut that doesn’t go away… even as you’re firing up Windows for the first time on your shiny, new computer! Also, as I searched the internet for the best prices, the best links I could find elsewhere were all slightly more expensive, plus I couldn’t get everything I wanted in one shop. For someone like me, I need a place like Newegg, because that is where I do most of my actual designing. After I finally decided this, I settled down and created an account. It doesn’t obligate you to anything, but it gives you an incredible My Wishlist feature - where you can save several lists with custom names. So you can (and should) make several ‘builds’, each with their own custom wishlist. This way you may easily weigh the differences between price and quality, this style or that, etc., Plus when it comes time when something new comes out or certain items become unavailable, if even temporarily, you have a speedy way to make a switch. With that done, let’s go shopping!
In this modern age of computing, the tables have really turned. Before we had to really watch our purchases as you never really knew if you’d get a product that isn’t really up-to-snuff. Nowadays, you can buy the least expensive laptop from pretty much anywhere and it’ll last you for years. Buying PCs is like that, too. But what we’re looking for is a bit more special that the average gaming device. I used to make my rendering machine decisions based upon a gaming machine, with the mentality that if you can run high-end games, you can run anything. While this might be somewhat true, it doesn’t entirely apply to Carrara - and it certainly won’t get you the best deal for the fastest render speeds. Know this now. I am now expert on this. But I’ve done it before - and most successfully, too, I might add.
Carrara would rather have a quad core processor than a zippy video card. This is not to say that the graphics card won’t help. You want a good, solid card that can really turn out good OpenGL results - but in Carrara, it won’t help at all with rendering. Quad core isn’t the top dog anymore, either. I have an AMD Eight Core Desktop processor. Garstor uses server class stuff, which I am incapable of talking about at this point. Too bad, too. Because server class motherboards allow two, possibly more by now, processors on the same board (in the same computer). So two eight core cpus would give us sixteen cores, which isn’t just twice as fast - it much faster than that!
Be back soon