3D Modelling/Programming for School, what to upgrade?

elemek

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May 11, 2009
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Hi,
I am a student taking a lot of both programming classes and classes that do 3d modelling (A lot of Maya and Unity for school). I already have a nice desktop, but it's been a few years since I upgraded it, and I'm getting some extra money for school that can be invested in a better computer.
What I have:
Motherboard: ASRock Z87 Extreme4
CPU: i5-4670K @3.4 GHz
Memory: 8GB DDR3
Storage: 446 GB SSD and 596 GB HDD
GPU: GeForce GTX 760
Power Supply: ANTEC SG-650 650W, 7 years old
Case: Antex 902, also 7 years old
Display: ASUS VH226H Black 21.5" HDMI.

I do not have enough desk space for a second monitor, or it'd be a high priority.

Anything important that I missed?

Anyway, I'd like to upgrade some of those, but am not sure what's the highest priority for my needs.

What's good enough (I suspect all of it except the memory is good enough), and what's in desparate need of replacement? What would be nice to have? Thanks.

VR
Gwen
 

k1114

Titan
Moderator
More cuda cores does not mean better. The 1060 is better. A pascal core does more work than a kepler core. Gpu accelerated rendering generally does not see a big improvement vs the cards actual performance. Also it's just gi and cpu is still the biggest factor in rendering. Yes the psu is enough. Depending on when you are going to upgrade, sky/kabylake-x would be coming out and going up in cores is a much more worthwhile upgrade than just adding ht by getting an i7. You could do that for now if you want to upgrade now.
 

Supahos

Polypheme
Herald
Would certainly want at least 16gb memory. If you have temporary cash it'd be nice to upgrade to a 4790k (can buy used be sure to update bios before removing current processor and sell current one should only lose $100 or so in that swap)
 

elemek

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I appreciate the suggestion. I had assumed upgrading either the processor or motherboard meant upgrading both, and probably the memory, too (which, depending on how much I get, might be an option, but I don't know my budget yet). Buying used, and especially selling old components, had not even occurred to me as an option, and I really am not sure how to go about either. Is it as simple as going on ebay and running a search, or are their better places to buy used components? Likewise, how do you go about selling components you no longer need?
 

ikaz

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Well you probably want to look into getting a better GPU for rendering.

https://blogs.nvidia.com/blog/2016/07/25/mental-ray-maya/

May want to look into getting GTX 970 (I suggest a 970 over a GTX 1060 because of the higher Cuda core counts in the 970).
 

elemek

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Oh, related question. Is my power supply sufficient for this, or will I have to upgrade it to use the components I'd need? It's an old 650W power supply.
 

k1114

Titan
Moderator
More cuda cores does not mean better. The 1060 is better. A pascal core does more work than a kepler core. Gpu accelerated rendering generally does not see a big improvement vs the cards actual performance. Also it's just gi and cpu is still the biggest factor in rendering. Yes the psu is enough. Depending on when you are going to upgrade, sky/kabylake-x would be coming out and going up in cores is a much more worthwhile upgrade than just adding ht by getting an i7. You could do that for now if you want to upgrade now.
 

elemek

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First off, thanks for the helpful answers, so far. What would be the advantage of waiting for kabylake-x vs getting a kabylake right now?
 

elemek

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I meant, upgrading to kaybelake now, or waiting to upgrade to kaybelake-X. I have no interest in buying a slightly better version of the same processor I have now, which is a Haswell if I remember correctly. Just wanted to know how much better the -X would be than the Kaybelakes already available.
 

k1114

Titan
Moderator
The answer is still more cores. Kabylake only goes up to 4 cores. Sky-x is 6+. Kaby-x is just a 4 core cpu that we know of now. Not that it matters since kaby is just a sky refresh. Ipc will be the same, it's the same architecture.
 

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