Apr 20, 2009
Recently I built a gaming rig and didn't really have any issues.

For work, I need a computer that can handle CAD with relative ease. This system will be used for basic drawing assignments. We will NOT be using the most demanding aspect of CAD: 3D modeling. However, we will be doing dimensional layouts, draft components, etc.

Any recommendations on what type of system would be ideal for these requirements?

Thank you!


Apr 20, 2009

Thanks for your input. What kind of workstation card would you recommend? I am having trouble figuring out which way to go on this one.

Is it really worth going i7 on this as opposed to the Q9550 or even 9650? The MOBO's for the new socket design are quite expensive.

Also: budget is around $1,500.
For 1500 and what you need, I think it's i7.

Your Quaddro card isn't that much:

A base i7 920 build will run around 1200.

Here's a few specific parts:


Gigabyte board:

Mushkin RAM
I trust these guys a bit more for workstation builds... you could save here if needed.

A nice quick WD Caviar Black:

Really, if you aren't gaming an i7 isn't that pricey. Get two of those drives and make a RAID to protect your data.

Case.... You want looks or cooling to come first?

For a system thats not going to be used for 3D rendering almost anything will do .

We ran Solidworks on a 2.8 GHz dual core pentium 4 with 1 gig of RAM . OS was XP . Gfx was a 7300 series nVidia card

It was an off the shelf Dell that we bought because it had an LCD as part of the system .

It was fast and responsive .

Any $70 processor from 2009 would spank the p4

You will not need the latest and greatest .

Id suggest a system based on an e8400 , 4 gig of RAM , and a nice quiet case and psu , a budget gamer gfx card and a large monitor
To be fair system specs even for solid works have doubled in the latest generation of software .

Now they have a 1 gig minimum and recommend 2 gig or higher

I would probably build a machine like this with a basic quadro or equivalent ATI gfx card . It does give you some advantages , mainly stability and driver features .
It wont need to be an expensive card ... maybe even passively cooled

I like quiet work environments . Thats one of the reasons I suggest the e8400 . Its a very low power consumption cpu and will likely be quieter . In a quiet case like the antec sonata or p182 it will be almost silent

Have a look at the website for the CAD program you want to use . There will be minimum recommended specs for hardware
Hmm on the budget end this would be my suggestion $469 free shipping hehe