Looking for Hardware Specifications?

Posted on March 22, 2016 by Product Support Manager Darin Green

Are you trying to find the right machine for the job of processing your design files? If so, keep reading…

Before you begin searching for new hardware, you should first understand your current workload, challenges, and what’s currently working fine.

Workload:

  • Large or Complexed models AutoCAD (25MB+), Inventor (500+ parts), Revit(25MB+)
  • Mid to Small Size models which are anything less/smaller than the above reference

Challenges:

  • Designing over the LAN/WAN takes the application a long time to save/open/close
  • Everything on my machine is slowed down when launching the application
  • Screen flickers or graphics card crashes from time to time
  • Application takes too long to open

Currently working fine:

  • Plotting
  • 2D Annotation and drafting

Of course these are not all of the challenges that may arise from outdated and/or lacking hardware.

The most important features of a machine that make all the difference are as follows:

Processor:

3.2 Ghz or better depending on your workload. For example, if you regularly have Outlook, Word, Excel, Spotify, AutoCAD, and Revit open at the same time, you should get a processor with more speed like 4.0Ghz and higher.

Cost Estimate:

~$339 (source: Newegg.com)

RAM:

Once you have a faster processor that can process a lot of data very quickly, you’d want to get enough RAM to handle what it’s receiving from the Processor. That being said, I recommend having 8 to 16GB of RAM.

Graphics Card:

Graphics Cards play a large role with any drafting or high quality graphical representations. Let’s face it, there’s not a single design application produced by Autodesk that doesn’t rely heavenly on your card. When looking for graphic cards, the first place to look is Autodesk Certified Hardware.

If you’re an AutoCAD user, you can use the AutoCAD Hardware Advisor. The Hardware Advisor is an interactive website where you can tell Autodesk your typical workflow, and Autodesk will provide you with the best Dell machines to purchase.

Regardless of the application, you should stick with NVIDIA or AMD cards. Although the Intel HD cards are supported (because they have DirectX support), you should stay away from them because the more design and drafting you do will most likely cause issues down the line especially for Autodesk Suite products.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to call us on support (215) 302-3040.

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