SOLIDWORKS Hardware Suggestions

SolidWorks World was just a couple weeks ago and I was able to attend many informative classes. I want to do a series of blogs in regards to those classes.
One of the many questions we get at FISHER/UNITECH is, what kind of hardware should I buy? One thing we are not supposed to do is suggest a particular company over another, such as Boxx versus Dell versus HP (all of these companies were sponsors at SW World this year.) This answer can vary wildly by daily requirements, BUT I will narrow this to a bare minimum I would personally buy in this scenario:
a. Only using SolidWorks without another program going, like a non integrated CNC package.
b. Using anything in SolidWorks but no heavy simulation or rendering (“light” usage just fine.)
Depending on budget, these can be scaled (like the processor speed)
1. The faster single processor the better. No dual processors for SW (unless doing heavy rendering & Simulation) – Spend money here, this will pay off big time in time.
2. 4-6 Cores – SolidWorks uses 2 most of the time but extra will come in handy for rendering.

3. 12 – 16GB RAM for SW (more if rendering and using Simulation) – RAM is cheap, better to have more and not use it all than not have enough.

4. Quadro 5000 is best. Quadro 2000 buck/versus speed. Other cards can be used like ATI but I have no personal experience with them, check them out too. They looked very nice at SW World.
5. Running a solid state drive gives best performance, mainly working local. If running over a network then go 7500 rpm or greater speed. I’ll talk about data management and how this affects this option in a later post.
Another speed tip is to change your system options for Windows.
Computer > Properties > Advanced Tab > Settings, set to adjust for best performance.
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