upgrading PC any suggestions

I have a PC I had built last year before i got into blender. Now it seems that blender is all i do on PC. My specs are
Gigabyte GA-MA785GM-US2H
AMD phenom II x2 550 BE
Patriot g-series DDR2 1066mhz 8GB
WD 400GB HD 16mb cache
ultra lsp750w PSU
Sapphire HD4850 512mb
Sony DVD drive
I’m going to get the AMD phenom II X6 1090 T BE, 1 TB HD either 32mb or 64mb Cache but i have know clue on what new GPU to get. I can spend about $350 but I have seen people say Nvidia over ATI. I have always beed ATI for my gaming but that can change if it helps blender. I mainly want improvement in sculpting, Cause right now when i get over 1.5mil. poly. it start to lag bad with brushes and rotating. I also have win7. I have tried dual boot with ubutu 10.04 but no improvement. I would appropriate some help. I just want it to have the best i can afford so i don’t need to upgrade this box anymore till i need a whole new PC. Thanks

You don’t say what version of blender you are using. Have you tried the blender 2.5beta ? The sculpting capability has been vastly improved.

sorry I’ve tried 2.5alpha 2 and 2.53 beta they both where pretty much the same. Had tried opengl settings also gone into ati setting tried a bunch. I also had tried different builds off from graphicall.org.

Funny my computer which has an ATI radeon hd3200 can do 1,5 mill verts without lag.

i can get up to 1.5 mil to but its when i get over it. It can be manageable at 1.5 mil but i’m just wondering if there is a better card then what i have so i can reach 10 mil or 20 mil thats all.

I could sculpt up to 30 Mil polys with 2.5 beta and it starts to lag as my system starts to cache on my hard disk. (system specs in signature).
Limit for me is my ram, but you have enough ram. It is not the best to try sculpting with the default cube, better the monkey mesh e.g…
Some people could sculpt more polys with 2.49!, than it is a gfx driver issue.
Some settings for beta 2.5 in user preferences :
Reduce global undo in “Editing”
Play with “Window Draw Methode” and “VBO” in “System”
(For me = Tripple Buffer and VBO=On)
Disable “Double Sided” in Mesh Properties

If the AMD phenom II X6 1090 T fit in your mainboard, it is the best solution to get improvement for your system but more for rendering and smoke/fluids.

Cheers mib

I have 9500gt, a donkey slow dual core and 2GB of ram and I can sculpt at 7million faces with no lag, as long as I don’t use GLSL matcaps. What kind of base mesh are you using? I hope you are not using a cube.

Multi-res modifer works better with denser meshes, so try Suzanne and see if it still lags. If you are using a dense base mesh than bummer because your performance should be a lot higher than what you are getting.

mib2berlin beat me to the punch

I got it to 6.35mil with no lag at all. With VBO=on and Triple Buffer on (I changed in ati setting to Triple buffer on) and front faces only checked on. When i go above to 25mil it lags but its manageable if i move mouse slow. Thanks for the help. I still think I want a different GPU in the long run. I hadn’t been using base cube I was trying on mesh of a dragon i was working on not nothing that was to detailed. I had tried on Suzanna mesh but at 8 mil it starts to lag. I pretty new to this and its all learning possess. Thanks again for you help.

About the CPU upgrade to AMD phenom II X6 1090 T it is only cause I want to speed up render times when i start working on large scenes. Thanks a bunch.

does anyone know if I should go with gtx 200 series or can it be alright to go up to the gtx 400 series. I just don’t want to have to do another upgrade in another year. Someone please give me some input and reasons why to choose either one or should i just stick with a newer ATI in same bracket level card

I’ve bought my gtx 260 a few months ago and now i am annoyed about. I had to wait for the new gtx4xx series. It was not known at this time they sell a cheaper series like gtx 460.
If you don’t need cuda for something like octane renderer or video editing or play hd videos with VLC during a huge blender render :yes: , you got a better prize/power ratio with ati cards.

I use linux for a long time and so i never touch a ati card, but this is only an old habit.

Cheers mib

i can not recommend the 400 series at the moment, it seems the drivers are terrible and my 470 cant even take 500k polys wihtout lagging.
maybe you should wait till they release some drivers for the 400 series that work with openGL applications and see what performance these cards acctually have.
im in contact with someone from NVIDIA which gathers informations on this problem so i think it should not take them to long to figure out whats wrong.

you can find more about that here http://blenderartists.org/forum/showthread.php?t=191597

Ya i had seen that tread. So it seem that it would be better at this point in time to go with gtx 200 series or ATI. I just don’t want the lag that i get with the hd 4850. Its manageable but if i go to upgrade i want improvement over what i have. Seems more with nvidia people have less problem with them. You posts have helped some in my choice thank a bunch

Hi, i followed kromar’s thread and the results are not promising but blender is not the only software you use, i think, directx 11 and opencl 4.1 are not provided by gtx 2xx.
I recommended only not to buy old hardware like gtx 2xx, than go over to ati.
Btw. they have driver issues at openCL.
If i could change my gtx260 for a gtx460 i would spend the 50 bucks more for it.

Cheers, mib

whatever you do, give a little consideration for how you might be able to use the old components to build a barebones box for your own little render farm
I just put together an extra box out of leftover components and it’s fun playing with the net-render option in 2.53 and the network rendering options in some external renderers
obviously, you’re looking for speed, a spare box doesn’t hurt


Just a thought: have you tried soft-modding the ATI card you have to a firegl/firepro? You could then use ATI’s pro-card drivers and perhaps get better performance. I’ve been considering getting an ATI card and trying it. It’s a softmod so at worst you fail and just have to reinstall drivers. I think there is some debate as to how effective the mod is but it may be worth a google and giving it a try.

i had searched about soft modding my card but was not able to find much on the HD 4850. If you can send it my way i wouldn’t mind trying it before i install a new card. i had also thought about getting a workstation card instead but didn’t want to pay alot for one. Does anyone out there use a workstation card? If you do what kind and hows the performance.

I would start here and see what you can do. I am not able to find specific examples but this may work. Please post back if you try it and what the results were. I have been thinking about picking up a 4850 and trying this.

All i been able to find stuff on soft modding was the HD 4870 but nothing about the HD 4850. I had searched a few times cause it was the first thing i had thought of to do. But mine is 512 mb I think the firepro version is 1 gb I could be wrong. This was one of the other reasons why i had wanted to get a new GPU. If you find something get back. Thank for the input though.

OK I upgraded my CPU to the phenom II X6 1090T which improved render benchmark from 18.90sec to 6.66sec avg. also had it as low as 5.35sec too which had amazed me (none OC’ed CPU 3.2Ghz) and I had also got the evga GTX 460 superclock 1024mb. Now when sculpting the brush is not as laggy at 8mil poly and now when I go to the 30mil range the brush is still very usable. but when i have high poly it lags when in object mode but thats not really and issue cause i will be baking them into the lower poly mesh. I know the drivers will get better in time. But it is very manageable compared to the HD 4850 512mb that i had before. Thank a bunch mib2berlin you had helped my in my deciding in this upgrade choice.