Computer building

Still waiting for the mobo to show up, but nerdgasm…

I haven’t built a PC in over 15 years. I’ve been running nothing but laptops. I do have one desktop PC in the house, but it was the old plex server. It’s old enough that the MOBO backup battery is bad so the bios keeps forgetting it’s settings after each reboot.


Amd is making some really solid chips in this ryzen lineup. I just finished a build with the 3900. My old 6core fx would stutter my ender 3 over USB if I asked it to slice another model while I was printing. Routinely took 30 minutes to calculate Adaptive paths in fusion on a 3d stl.
Only issues I have now are when fusion wants to communicate with big brother before it does what I ask. Running in offline mode fixes that, and it just CRUISES.

My current laptop is a core i7 with dedicated nvidia graphics in an Asus 2 in 1. I’ve been surprised at how well it’s holding up. I get most of my stuttering in Adobe Premiere when trying to jog final videos with a decent amount of rendering.

The plan to fix this is to salvage all of the storage from the current Plex server… use the 128GB SSD for a scratch/cache disk, the two 2tb spindles for bulk storage, and then the new computer is getting the nvme storage for the OS.

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That nvme is CRAZY. I’m using one for my os and 2x1 tb array for storage. Lost about half my data transferring it to the array, so I guess I waited too long for redundancy. Oops.
I’m not familiar with scratch/cache. Seems obvious what it does, but is that something you set up with Adobe?

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Yeah. That’s something inside of Premiere itself.

When it’s pre-rendering, it can send the temp files to the scratch disk instead of trying to write them back to the spindles that the raw footage came from.

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A few years ago I started to get interested in computers again, after spending my 20ies at university and roaming around with only a laptop to use. I had a long inner convo about buying a proper rig: “I’m a grown up, I make my own money, if I want a good computer, why not? I’ve never had a beefy machine all my life, I have the money, why shouldn’t I?” So on and so on. Finally, one day - I gave in. Water cooled 1080ti, nvme disk, all that stuff. What a glorious joy! It booted in only a few sec, and ANY game/program would launch instantly.

BUUT - being a family father, the premium machine started all too soon to gather dust. After a year of being nearly unused, I sold it - to buy a Prusa MK3s. I didn’t regret it for a second, the Prusa is much used, and is a hobby that is more easily combined with having small kids. (they LOVE the Duplo to Brio adapters!).

But then again… tides are always turning, and now I’m missing my machine. Not to play PUBG, but for slicing, rendering workpaths, vectors and working in Fusion 360 - and having a proper stationary setup playing with SBCs and such. I actually have a plan - to put aside money I earn from printing/CNCing, and buying a proper computer - once again. But this time, it’ll be with income from the hobby itself, not from my “main pocket”.


Your history is similar to mine… Except the last full-on PC I built was in college.

It was a dual-proc AMD Opteron with all the latest gadgets. No water-cooling. That was just getting started circa-2000. I did have a custom case that I installed my own windows and case fans in (120mm top-mounted exhaust!). The cases that came with windows back then were uber-expensive and required ordering them online from boutique stores.

After that build, I pretty much didn’t do anything computer related. I went through a few laptops. The last PC I bought was from best buy. I added a few hard drives in it, but that was it.

The laptops have served me well, but I need something with more oomph for the same reasons you do. My laptop runs hot quite often trying to keep up with my workload. Plus it’s old enough it originally came with Windows 8.

Fusion 360 is an odd beast. Rendering, it can grab all my cores and go to town. Toolpaths, it can grab a bunch of them while it analyzes the model, then it goes down to one while it figures out the path. Everything else, one core ONLY. Kinda aggravating watching my pc cruise along at 5-8% and know that fusion isn’t even trying harder.
On the up side, my old computer couldn’t even run some of the cam simulations without freezing. Cut a little, freeze, erase the progress and show me the blank stock, watch the little red bar at the bottom catch up, flash to a partially cut model, endmill moves an inch, freeze, erase the progress and show me a blank model.
I left one of them running for a little over an hour while I ate dinner, came back and it was still fighting with itself.
Fx 6300 and I think an r270 or some nonsense. It runs Linux now and one of my boys uses it for steam games.

What do you all think would be a proper build to handle slicing, CAD and rendering?? I don’t think I need a water cooled 12GB RAM GPU, but a little more than the integrated graphics card on my laptop would be nice… I’ve been thinking about taking the middle path, and getting a GPU-case to run on the thunderbolt connection, and make a permament workstation with some sort of docking option.

Hopefully someone can come along that can better answer that for you.

I was almost at a loss when I started picking parts for my new build. I researched just enough to know what some of the numbers meant and kinda winged it from there. I know at least 3 of my components I grabbed because Amazon said ‘often bought with’ after selecting a previous component.

The only thing I truly shopped for was the Lian Li case. I remember Lian Li having beautiful cases when I first started modding, but at the time I couldn’t afford them. Fast forward 20 years and I finally got my Lian Li case.

I imagine almost any standalone graphics card would work for most CAD. It wouldn’t be as fast as possible, but it wouldn’t be super frustrating either. I use onshape, which is in a browser, with my laptop (which does have a “standalone” graphics card) in Linux. If I can do that, then you don’t need IBM watson.

Almost as bad as TV Tropes is PC Part Picker

You’re welcome. :supervillain:

Maybe I just should get a proper wide desk, that I can have a stationary dock on, with the big screen and all.(I kept the screen when I sold the rig!!) Hmm hmm…

That’s what I do. I use a USB-C docking station with 2 monitors hooked up. It has dual 27" screens.

It doesn’t hurt that I bounce back and forth between my Asus laptop and the work macbook pro.

I also use my laptop with a big screen. I don’t have a dock, just a usb c hub and a display port cable.

Most gaming cards won’t do a thing for you with real cad applications. They use memory differently. It will work better than intel integrated, but something like an nvidia quadro card will work better.

@niget2002 Scratch disks, back in the olden days, MacOS called that a ram disk!

Fusion 360 should get some acceleration from any gfx card.

“we use GPU for the real time rendering for the modeling viewport, using DirectX and OpenGL API”

It sees the dedicated Nvidia card on my laptop, which is far from a quaddro.

They recommend anything with directx12 support

Looks like most of the latest Nvidia chipsets support it.

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Good to know! Most of my clients use solidworks, so quadros. I actually don’t know of any of my clients using autodesk products. Kinda makes sense, it’s 90% web based anyway.

I think quadros are generally a scam. I bet you they are basically the same chips, but they come with a piece of paper that says they will work with professional programs like autocad, pro engineer, photoshop, etc. I’m not sure how the economics work though, because autodesk must be getting something back to put quadros in their minimum requirements.

That said, when you are paying a full time engineer to work in one of these programs, the price of a quadro is not worth the risk of even a few days downtime.

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I know their drivers are different.