New to Blender - Need to buy a new gpu, any suggestions?

Hi guys, I’m new to blender and have to been learning a lot the past couple of weeks. I currently have a 5600X, 2x8GB of Ram, and an RX550 4GB GPU.

It was working fine, just slow on rendering (mainly on cpu load) since the card barely helps apparently even with AMD ProRender. It has started to crash a lot, just the program and not as often the computer itself shuts down from the load.

I wanna be able to work faster, render and go back to making changes to be able to finish faster and improve what I’m doing.

I’m looking into buying an Nvidia 1650, or 3050/3060 if I can find one at a good price, or 6500XT/6600. Idk if any of them would be any good. I’m also looking into buying am extra set of 2x8GB Ram. Do you guys have any suggestions?

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I can’t help with GPUs, as I don’t follow recent market, but I have an advice about RAM.

If you want to buy another 16GB and have 32GB total it would be better to buy new 32GB kit and sell those two 8GB sticks that you have.

Mixing sticks with different manufacturing date is not always good, as you might end with different timings, or even get sticks with different dies from different manufacturers (SKHynix instead of Samsung or Micron for example). And that applies even if you buy identical RAM model (to what you have) from the same vendor like GSkill, Corsair, Crucial, etc.

If you are buying complete new set you can be sure those 4 sticks were validated together and that they will work properly no matter what (as long as they were QVL’d for your motherboard).

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Hi.

While deciding if you should give a kidney away in order to be able to buy a Nvidia RTX graphics card, you can try Google Colab and let it render your project while you continue using Blender:

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Regarding your PC, what kind of projects are you working on that are crashing? your system is not too bad, I do a lot of professional work on a 6GB laptop GPU, and it rarely crashes, only on very big scenes.

I do have 64GB of ram, I am not sure if cycles has the ability to load stuff into RAM once the video memory is full.

I would suggest buying some more RAM first, and see if that solves your problem.

I double down on what @silex said. Mixing RAM can lead to blue screens, crashes, and a lot of weird things.

As for GPU, stick with NVIDIA and if you can’t afford an RTX, save some money and wait until you have enough to buy one.

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Thanks @silex, do you think I’d have trouble even if I get the same brand/specs and same sku? I’ve seen same specs with different sku, but found one that looks like everything is the same.

Hi @sergioValente, I’m sculpting a teddy bear, and have tried home modeling/rendering, but the same happens in both… i have:

5600x CPU
RX550 GPU 4GB
Aorus Pro-P B550M Motherboard
2x8GB Corsair Vengeance Pro 3600 CL18
650 EVGA PSU Gold

I found a couple decent priced 3060 and 3060ti in stock, but the 6600 and 6600xt were cheaper. But after seeing the benchmarks I think I’d be better or with an nvidia card. I’m a fast learner and used to working with autocad, sketchup, and lumion, but I feel like the slow render is setting me back, since I like to go back and forth to edit.

I recently expanded my RAM, but I bought the exact same make and clock speed, just bigger. It works like charm. So, if your old RAM is still good, just small, you can try buying the same, just make sure to check the specs. CPU ID has a tool that can tell you for example.

For 3D, GPU is always more important than CPU, but it is also true, for bigger works, the GPU memory can fill up, even if fast, it may break your rendering process.

So, what I would suggest, is to invest in some RAM, all-new, or additional, and save money for a GPU.

Everyone will tell you, that nvidia is better than AMD, which is true for ray-tracing and Blender in general. However, Blender seems to expand on AMD support, and for the same price, you can most likely grab a much faster AMD card, with more RAM, that can be crucial for rendering.

Ask yourself, how much you want to work with ray tracing, and in game engines? Or just make 2D renders, and assets, and textures. If you aim for the latter, IMO, you can do great things with an AMD GPU as well. For laptops for instance, the ASUS ROG Advantage Edition rocks a Radeon RX 6800M 12 GB(!!!), which is on par, or even better in games, compared to RTX 3070 or even 3080. However, at a considerably lower price range. Can it do ray tracing? Well, why not, maybe not as good… But do you need more than 40 fps for gaming single player? You can even reach 200 in multiplayer without fancy effects.

So, all in all, I would not necessarily rule AMD GPU-s out. You have to measure yourself, how much money you have or can save, and when do you really need that upgrade. Concentrate on future proof purchases, that can last even 4-5 years. AMD will most likely improve in the upcoming years, and if you save money now, you can do your stuff, and also inspect the market, and save for another, bigger leap later.

The problem is that the SKU specs are not so rigid for integrators (Corsair, GSkill, etc.) as you may think.
There are 3 major players when it comes to producing (actual producing not rebranding) DRAM chips (dies) - Samsung, SKHynix and Micron (big 3).

Integrators like Corsair are buying those dies in bulk. Usually when an SKU is manufactured it will get specific die from specific manufacturer throughout the entire production lifetime. But sometimes integrators want to be smart and when they are running out of previous RAM dies they swap it at one point just to continue making good selling kit.

There are multiple reasons for this - logistics, financial, or recent supply chain issues.

For an example lets take Corsair which is known for using dies from big 3.
First batch of Vengeance LPX, DDR4, 32 GB, 3600MHz, CL18 (CMK32GX4M4D3600C18) produced between 2020-2021 could have Samsung e-die chips.
And second batch produced from 2022 of the same SKU with the same codename could be made with a Micron dies.
This is just a made up example to illustrate the issue.

The problem is that even if the major specs of DRAM dies are identical, the secondary, tertiary or even more esoteric ones do not match as both Samsung and Micron have different production IP, different design and production tech. The only thing that matches are primary specs. And when those dies are mixed in one system it can lead to loads of instabilities as @sergioValente pointed out. And you can’t really troubleshoot it aside from swapping RAM for different one.

You can strip heatsinks from your RAM to check if the memory dies are the same. But you need to do it after purchase, removing radiators can be PITA and possibly could void your warranty (not sure about that one).
Its easier to just buy the kit that was checked, tested and verified by the integrator. The dies in that kit will be from the same memory manufacturer.

Get a RTX 3060 at least in it. But the more VRAM the better.

Also, an additional note on this topic, that may be a bit philosophical. If you are new to Blender, and 3D in general, you would need to ask yourself (as I am asking myself constantly): how likely it is, that you will really earn money with doing this? I’m not talking about being a billionaire from NFT-s kinda plans, or so, just really, down to the earth kinda way.

Most of us are hobby artists, and this hobby mostly takes money, time, etc… and never really brings them.

Ask yourself, if only your GPU or other specs are the factors, that would hold you back from actually earning more from this, than the amount you spend. Can you may out the capabilities your rig right now?
Can you not model, texture, bake or render reasonably without the need of a better machine? The answer is most likely yes. If you had a better rig, would you know better, how to model, or what nodes to plug where?
Of course, with a few subsurf, you can break any video cards :smiley: but reasonably, mostly all of us are held back by time issues, and skill, and not our rig.

So, at the end of the day, ask yourself, if you really have a plan you are willing to follow. Selling assets, creating a Youtube channel, working as a freelancer maybe, and if you are dedicated and likely to reach that goal. And when you have that goal, and start working for it, and you really feel you need to spend some more money, that you will likely get back in 2-5 years, at least partially, then yes, you may need that upgrade, but even then, I would consider a more cost-effective approach, like an AMD 6800 compared to a 3070-3080. Blender will most likely improve AMD support in the future, that will give you an edge later, not just in gaming.

Until then, I would simply start doing Blender, tutorials, small assets, larger scenes for fun, and check what interests you, and if that may bring money later. For that, know your interests, and have a PLAN, other than occasionally creating some stuff. And if you really feel your rig is holding you back… well, then you can always check the market at that stage :slight_smile:

Just want to add my 2 cents here…

Buy the card you can afford, if this is still just a hobby.
Unfortunately the GPU market is messed up due to mining scalpers, and graphic cards are nauseatingly expensive atm… And there seems no real end in sight for this.

Second, more RAM is always a good thing for 3D. I would recommend 32Gb, preferably a new set of 2x16Gb. You can mix 'n match RAM strips, but it’s always better to have one brand/batch.

Lastly, you mention the PC crashes due to the load. Is that a real bluescreen crash, or just the PC being stuck on swapping out RAM to disk and vv… Big difference.
If you get bluescreen crashes, it might be time to investigate the RAM anyway :wink:

cheers,

rob

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As @RobWu said, exactly. My current rig also had some BSOD and all was RAM related. I had it replaced and it works like charm.
The current AMD of the submitter is not that bad at all actually, def good for starting 3D. Buying sth just to have sth new should not be worth it, but still, even if saving money, a reasonable, optimal spending should be aimed at.