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Author Topic: Building a computer for art school  (Read 1511 times)

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Offline Juju

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Building a computer for art school
« on: August 03, 2017, 10:28:58 pm »
So yeah, my mom is going to university in animation next semester (as a student of course) and she needs a pretty good computer for that, any tips? I have about a C$1000 budget for the graphics card alone (thanks some restaurant's foundation, that's helpful), plus probably another C$500-1000 for the rest. The parts shouldn't be hard to order either online or at the computer shop down the street.

Minimum configuration needed:
- Intel 64-bit 4th gen quadcore CPU
- 12 GB RAM
- 1 SSD (for the operating system)
- >1 TB hard drive (for data)
- NVIDIA Quadro K2200 (for 2D) or K4200 (for 3D), certified The Foundry and Autodesk
- Max. 2 screens (22-24", 1080p)
- Network card
- DVD burner
- Graphic tablet (not those ones with a screen in them, apparently the industry hates it because once you try it you can't go back)
- Keyboard and mouse (of course)
- Not a laptop

List of software needed (this list may vary without notice, and we already have them so I'm not asking for them, I'm just listing them so you have an idea of what kind of hardware I need):
- Autodesk Academic Resource Center (Entertainment Creation Suite Ultimate)
- ToonBoom Harmony
- zBrush 4R7
- NUKE The Foundry
- Houdini by Side Effects Software
- Marvelous Designer
- TV Paint
- Royal Render
- Arnold by Solid Angle
- ShotGun
- RV
- Lynda.com
- Gnomon
- Digital‐Tutors
- Golaem Crowd
- RealFlow
- Substance Live (Algorithmic)
- Video Copilot
- CGTextures
- Sound Ideas Series 6000 Library
- Sound Ideas Cartoon Express
- Adobe Creative Cloud 2017
- Adobe Stock Image
- Le Robert Correcteur 2.0.8

What I'm shooting for:
- AMD Ryzen 7
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080, probably 8 GB of graphic RAM (The Quadros I want are a bit too expensive so unless I find a good deal I'm going with a similar GeForce, screw the certifications, hope they don't mind, Minty Root (who went in a similar school) says it should be okay)
- 16 GB RAM (the motherboard should take up to 32 or 64 GB)

Money spent so far: C$80
- HP screen 25" 1080p (C$80, previously owned by Kheirozen on Twitch)

So yeah, first time I really do that, any tips? Any model I should buy?
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 07:27:14 am by Juju »


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Offline gameblabla

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2017, 11:31:45 pm »
Funny, my main PC's motherboard died (it was a bulldozer one, RIP AMD FX) and i just bought the parts to replace it.
Here are the main parts i bought :
AMD Ryzen 5 1500X
ASUS Motherboard at 70$ (don't remember the name sorry)
4GB G.Skill Ram
all for 272€ for no taxes with shipping.

But you should aim higher of course.
If you want to buy a Geforce GTX 1080, you should probably aim for a Ryzen 7 at least because they tend to have low IPCs compared to Intel.
The Quadro P5000 is good but is not cheap yeah.
https://www.pny.com/nvidia-quadro-p5000
They have tons of memory but they are tricky to set up. So a Titan or 1080 should do fine.

But DO NOT BUY A CHEAP POWER SUPPLY. Especially Corsair, they are awful.
Use FSP.
Also, don't use ASRock or Gigabyte for the motherboard.

Other than that, it looks good.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2017, 11:51:58 pm by gameblabla »
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Offline c4ooo

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2017, 12:11:54 am »
GTX 1080 seems a bit overkill. But if you do plan to get a 1080, 70, or 60, do wait a few months, as GPU prices are kinda high right now due to miners.

Offline Juju

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2017, 03:53:15 am »
The video card is going to be used a lot for rendering and photoshopping, so yeah, we're gonna want the best of the best here. Also why I took a Ryzen, heard they're pretty good for those tasks and video processing. Anyway, the semester is beginning in a month or so, so I want them kind of right now.

Speaking of miners, heard you can get some for pretty cheap on eBay due to miners being discouraged by the bitcoin price right now, kinda weird.
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Offline _iPhoenix_

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2017, 06:49:09 am »
I have one a Mac Pro (used by my family, which sucks) and it is great at being a beast at pretty much everything I throw at it, but I'm not sure it will work with all the software you need.
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Offline Juju

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2017, 07:13:16 am »
Ah yeah, it sure is a beast, a bit priced and a bit over my budget though, but yeah, I'd definitely want one. I think they want Windows, though. Which you can install on it, but still, I don't think the specs will exactly match.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 07:16:39 am by Juju »
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Offline c4ooo

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2017, 09:50:18 pm »
Speaking of miners, heard you can get some for pretty cheap on eBay due to miners being discouraged by the bitcoin price right now, kinda weird.
Yea etherium prices fell so everyone want to cash out their GPUs, but I wouldn't buy them because those cards have been to hell and back mining.

Offline gameblabla

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2017, 10:00:55 pm »
I bought Ryzen but unfortunately, they suffer from crash issues under heavy-load.
https://phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=Ryzen-Test-Stress-Run

Several ppl were also able to replicate the issue in Windows.
So maybe using an Intel might be preferred for stability.

Once i get my ryzen proc in 2 days, i will try to use Linux-libre with ASLR enabled to see if disabling some microcode/microupdates
fix things. (probably not but worth a try)
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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2017, 10:05:18 pm »
I read that as phoenix.com...

then I read another part of that as my name... omfg I'm delirious from too much calc programming.
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Offline ben_g

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #9 on: August 08, 2017, 07:26:59 pm »
Autodesk software can use tons of RAM. When working with Inventor (especially when rendering something) my PC often starts swapping while it has 20GB of RAM. I never used Entertainment Creation Suite Ultimate so I can't tell you exactly how much RAM it uses, but it may be useful to have more than 16GB. If you don't want to increase the RAM then make sure you get a fast hard drive (putting the page file on the SSD is apparently terrible for it) so swapping isn't that much of a pain.

Offline Juju

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #10 on: August 08, 2017, 09:02:06 pm »
Hmmm, yeah, might buy a bit more RAM, 16 GB is a minimum. So it would be better the swap file goes off the SSD? Yeah, better invest in a fast hard drive anyway. Any model to suggest?
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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2017, 09:08:27 pm »
@Juju I would have thought the best people to help you with your spec is the university itself, they should help out
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Offline Juju

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #12 on: August 09, 2017, 12:19:49 am »
@Juju I would have thought the best people to help you with your spec is the university itself, they should help out
They ain't helping. They want you to buy one of their own all already made build and they provide no support if you do otherwise. Trust me, mom asked and got some stupid answer.
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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #13 on: August 09, 2017, 12:40:28 am »
Then use a 486
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Offline Juju

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Re: Building a computer for art school
« Reply #14 on: August 09, 2017, 12:50:11 am »
Yeah right, I'm not sure that thing would run everything.
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