my current rendering computer / looking to upgrade

I have a dell precision that I messed with:
Xeon W3503 cpu
24 gigs of ram
500 Gig SSD
NVIDEA GeForce GTX 650 Ti

my question is, how outdated / bad is my system?

I’m thinking of updating my rig to:

AMD Ryzen 7 3.00G
motherboard: AM4 atx ASUS ROG
video card85: EVGA PCIE GTX 1050 (edit: Ti)

any advice?

Hello fcharr!

About Ryzen 7, you read Ace Dragon advice here:

About GTX 1050, it is not recommended for Cycles, it only has 2GB vRAM.
If you stretch your budget a bit more, you can buy GTX 1050 Ti (see “Ti” model) with 4GB of vRAM and faster than 1050.
If you can still stretch the budget a bit more, GTX 1060 with 6GB vRAM is much faster. But be careful that this is the version with 6GB vRAM, because it also comes with 3GB that is little for Cycles.

looking at your build, I would leave the system and just upgrade the GPU. That is only if you are not looking to game on this.

And as YAFU stated, skip the 1050. either go for GTX 1060 6GB instead of the 3GB (the 3GB has less shaders compared to the 6GB), or RX 580 8GB (if you can get these cards new at reasonable prices). Or a used card like GTX 970ti.

Another option is (if possible) to upgrade the Xeon to something newer (again depending on the motherboard capabilities)

I’m running on Xeon e5-2687w, and for most of my render tasks, it is the GPU’s that I need. Granted I only create models/animate them. no particles/hair/fog.

thx guys :slight_smile: I think I’ll eventually redo the whole thing. Would like to end up with 2 gpu’s. One for display, another for rendering. I’m curious, does blender work with multiple gpu’s?

Whats the PSU and motherboard?

Getting a cheap LGA 1366 six core xeon as an upgrade off of ebay could be considerable though you have to carefully find and select a seller that is well rated(and not by bot accounts).

And yes, blender can use multiple GPUs.

hi fcharr,

2 gpus work with blender. and they work well. Two gpus realy make sense for rendering and a workstation. You can open one blender and set one graphic card to that blender and open another blender and set the second graphic card to that blender. I can also not recommend to buy a 1050. I dont know about the 1060 series but things i read about them are not too bad. But have no experience with 1060 cards . From practical experience we have unfortunately bought a 1050s card and they are..... jut for gaming fun...was wasted money in our experience. Dont care to much about a that modern cpu warfare. until software and simulation things don`t exploit that cpu sorces… just my experience :wink:

Double confirm the usage of dual GPUs. this is for rendering and view port rendering as well.

Xeon are expensive and do not have good single thread performance.

As I said in the other thread, a good CPU decision to work with Blender has to do with a balance between good amount of threads, and single thread performance. It’s good to have many threads for Cycles, but overall Blender’s performance falls and it’s a pain in processors with poor single thread performance.

Seeing characteristics of your current Xeon, an i7 or a Ryzen will work much better than that.

Regarding GPU… Yes you can use both for Cycles (keep in mind if your PSU will be able to support both). Anyway if you are going to use both to render, the vRAMs do not add up. The scene must fit in the memory of both cards, so the memory size will be limited by the smaller memory card.
You can also use the weaker card for the display and use the most powerful card to render with Cycles.
But… We will have Eevee soon (OpenGL). So surely you will want to have the most powerful card handling the display.

In terms of price vs performance a used xeon, especially if you already have a compatible motherboard and psu can be quite cheap. Also those 24GB of DDR3, if the motherboard supports it one of the 2 xeons in my linked intel ark comparison supports up to over 200GB so even a upgrade opportunity on the memory front, and used ddr3 can also still be found cheap.

OP said it is specifically a render box(see thread title), single thread is more a concern for viewport. And again depending on the mother board there might be an opportunity to OC the xeon(s).

Yes, for GPU rendering choose a card based on memory first, compute second. If you run out of GPU memory Cycles fails to render at which point the GPU is pointless.