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  1. #1
    What is more important for running large assemblies and parts with lots of features. A machine with super fast CPU's like Dual Core Intels, or a machine with a lot of video memory? Obviously a combination of both would be ideal, but I am not rich and can't afford a $5k computer.

    I still have a post running in the hardware section about buying a Mac and running Solidworks. It will work with Bootcamp with no problems. But, I am trying to decide on whether I should buy a machine with the fastest processors available (two3.0Ghz Dual Core Intels) or a video card with 512mb or more video memory. I am also buying this machine with 2GB worth of RAM.
    Kurlee Daddee

  2. #2
    I have been working with some folks at SEMA. Their large assemblies consist of full vehicles, i.e. trucks, cars, etc. 4gb of ram plus 1gb video and a fast cpu seems to do the trick, well, it's never really fast enough. I am currently running 4gb ram, with a 512mb video, it's a bit slower but efficient.

  3. #3
    I just went through this exercise. The information I have indicates that CPU speed is somewhat more important than video card performance - IF your video card is adequate to run SW. But the video card is a close second.

    I'd order it as:
    - Get a good, solid, SW-approved video card.
    - Get as much RAM as you can (At least 4 Gb - RAM is cheap)
    - Get as much single/dual-core CPU as you can justify. Don't get a quad-core.
    - Get the fastest hard drive you can justify

    In each case there will be a pricing breakpoint that will prevent you from going any bigger/faster on your budget.

    These links may help you decide bang for the buck: System.html s-charts/specapc-solidworks-2007-cpu,125.html,172 1-8.html rks-perf.html

  4. #4
    Sean is right, SolidWorks uses the CPU way more than the
    vid card. And since SW is a single threaded process
    software, so a quad core isn't necessary, but if you want
    to do anything else in the background, it's a good idea
    to have more rather than less.

    As for running SW on a Mac, it's just not economical. You
    can get a bada$$ PC set up for way cheaper, and it will
    probably outperform the Mac just because the software is
    designed for a Windows environment. Maybe I'm oldschool
    and that's changing, but it's not like Photoshop or any
    other program that has a background in Mac language.

    If you can, invest in a Solidstate hard drive for your
    primary drive, and run a raid 0 on two mechanical drives
    for everything else.
    Phil Whickham

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