Hello, I'm in the market for some new workstations. Now seems a good time to find some good deals, unfortunately I've not really kept up to date with the going-ons in the industry since sandy bridge was released, so I'm hoping you guys can give me a little advice. My budget is $1500 to build some systems that will be used for light to moderate CAD/CAM work. I expect to do some light to moderate FEA and CFD work using these computers on Pro/E 4.0 for CAD and FEA, and solidworks for CFD. Matlab also sees a good bit of use, as well as some light work in photoshop and illustrator. I'm trying to build two computers using this budget, which I know will be very tight since it amounts to $650 retail for each after 13% HST is applied, and a monitor must be included in that price. Knowing this, I'm not exactly looking for or expecting mind-blowing performance, running solvers overnight in complex cases is not a big deal. That said, I want to see if it is feasible. If not, the option to build just one computer is still open, if the sacrifices to speed do not justify the increased productivity from having two computers.
Here's what I've (roughly) spec'd out. I've tried to cut out as many unnecessary features as possible without sacrificing performance.
$215 Intel Core i5-3570 Ivy Bridge
$34 G.SKILL Value Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1333 (PC3 10600)
$90 GIGABYTE GA-H77M-D3H
$70 Western Digital WD Blue 500GB 7200 RPM
$150 ASUS VS Series VS228H-P Black 21.5"
$45 ENERMAX NAXN ENP450AST 450W ATX12V Power Supply
$60 Antec three hundred two case
Prices are from Newegg Canada, in canadian dollars. Sum of all those prices, multiplied by 2 since its for 2 PCs, then multiplied by 1.13 for sales tax comes out to about $1500
It's a pretty no-frills system; considering the purpose, it does what it needs to and very little else. I've opted to forgo a dedicated graphics card in favor of a better CPU. I'm not sure how heavily the applications I've mentioned are able to make use of GPUs for computation. I believe intel onboard units nowadays are adequate to display CAD programs if they aren't super complicated. I'm also willing to live without a CD drive. Mouse/keyboard/speakers can be foraged and put together from various sources, so I've excluded them. I've opted for the non-k version of the CPU as I don't think I can get much of an overclock from the stock cooler and I'm not sure that it would be a good thing to do when performing scientific computing that values accuracy.
On newegg, the system I've spec'd out here come out to $1500.49 for two systems, including tax but not shipping. I'm only using newegg to rough out the prices right now, I can buy them someplace with local pick-up like Canada computers or NCIX. For now, I'd like some advice, specifically, am I missing any components? Will this be able to run the software I've mentioned at a reasonable pace, or would I be better off with a single computer? and can I squeeze some better performance out of this budget?
Thanks, and happy holidays everyone.
Last edited by DF bobo
on Wed Dec 12, 2012 5:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.