Iâ€™m working with a new 3D software program right now, and it doesnâ€™t seem like my computer is up to snuff for it anymore. We are considering ordering a new one for me. Unfortunately the software developers donâ€™t give us much input in terms of optimal specs or hardware. The program is a parametric 3D modeler similar to Solidworks, and it also has itâ€™s own plug in rendering engine that uses ray tracing. Itâ€™s a program thatâ€™s targeted towards 3D Upholstery Design. Basically, I build the solids as you would normally, but then I can draw up my seam lines on the surface, and create 3D polygon mesh surface regions over top of the solids. These polygon mesh regions are then flattened into a 2D pattern that can be cut by the automated fabric cutting machine. I can also place a texture map over the flat pattern pieces, and those will be applied accordingly on the 3D model.
I have a Xeon processor with 3.0 Ghz, an nVidia Quadro FX 540 video card, and 2 Gb of RAM right now, and itâ€™s not enough. Most noticeably, the program runs slow during the Pattern Mesh flattening, importing large groups of meshed objects, and at times it will not render if the texture map is too detailed or of a resolution higher then 75 DPI. Iâ€™ve also seen it lock up if the rendering is too complex.
The software company is small, and they donâ€™t offer any test data on video cards like Alias, Solidworks, etc. do. Iâ€™ve only been told I need an Open GL card (which I do have now) with an AGP or PCI express port.
So my question is, what would you guys consider to be an optimal setup for 3D modeling and rendering?
Any particular computer model or processor? (We use Dell in our office predominantly BTW)
What would you consider to be the best Video Cards these days? I know I need an Open GL and will probably chose an nVidia Quadro, Iâ€™d like to get some more feedback on what may perform best, and what size memory I should chose.