2

I want to buy a new computer, I was doing fine with understanding what processor and memory I need.. but on the Graphics Card I get completely lost.

I want my computer to run great Photoshop and After Effects, then if the budget allows it would be great to run 3d (right now it's not my Specialty, but I want to get into that).

What should I be looking for in a Graphics Card for this? What is important and what isn't?

closed as off-topic by DA01, joojaa, go-junta, Andrew Leach, Zach Saucier Nov 30 '15 at 16:19

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This appears to be a tech support question about fixing technology to work as advertised. Please edit the question so that it pertains to using technology to solve a design problem. You may want to check if it hasn't already been asked in Super User. In many cases, contacting the manufacturer is the quickest option." – DA01, joojaa, go-junta, Andrew Leach
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 3
    It's possible your question will get close for being too broad & hardware related. We can't really tell you what to buy. When you need to purchase a computer, you can go look at the system requirements for the software you want to use, and then get something a bit higher if you can. Keep in mind that PC (you can't afford much more than mac mini at $1000 and it's not enough for 3D but good enough for design) have a "short" lifespan of +/-3-4 years usually. If you don't plan to learn 3D within that time, forget about it for now when shopping for a PC! Also depends what kind of 3D you want to do – go-junta Nov 29 '15 at 11:24
  • havent thought about the life span.. that's true, thanks i guess im asking other designers that bought a computer recently what did they bought... – tom kenar Nov 29 '15 at 12:17
2

This is not a complete answer. But here it goes a generic one.

1) Memory matters. So look for at least 8Gb.

2) Probably the safest bet in brute force processor now is i7. Look for the biggest number of the series. For example a i7 3xxx is third generation. A 4xxx is fourth and so on. The newer the better and cooler working environment.

Some process use several cores, no all of them. Just things like filters and renders.

3) But some processes now are done with the GPU not CPU so look for a good graphic card. There are some 3D rendering processes optimized for CUDA, which is a Nvidia software, so I would stay on that brand. A good GeForce will do.

4) Do not underestimate a good monitor... a big one is better, I like using 23-24 inches diagonal. 32 is too much for me.

5) Save some bucks to buy one monitor calibrating hardware, like Colourmunki. http://www.colormunki.com/

6) A good motherboard is necessary. This point is probably the trickiest, because one change in a component can make a difference in performance. You need one that is optimized for the processor you need, and have enough expansion slots to upgrade later.

  • 1
    I'd suggest at least 16gb for the ram. 8gb is a pain. Hard disk minimum 500gb, ideally 1tb. And I guess you meant GeForce.... ideally 2gb+ video memory. (Great resource for any hardware questions: tomshardware.com) – go-junta Nov 29 '15 at 19:59
  • 1
    @go-junta Or to put it more exactly: storage disk 1 TB or bigger; system/app disk doesn't need to be that big but should if at all possible not be a hard disk, but an SSD. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Nov 29 '15 at 23:23
  • 1
    It all depends. 16gb is overkill for a lot of stuff. Even 8gb may be more than one needs. All depends on what they wan to use it for. Granted, if you can afford the memory, always get it. But it all has to be factored into the overall budget. – DA01 Nov 30 '15 at 0:09
  • 1
    @DA01 the purpose of ram means its better to have too much than even a byte too little. 8Gb is standard but on the edge of risking it. 16 is much safer, I almost newer run over 16. But I only rarely max out to 32 Gb and only when i do FEM calculation. – joojaa Nov 30 '15 at 4:23
  • 1
    @joojaa I'd never argue you can have too much. Just saying that even with 32GB of RAM, if I can't afford a decent monitor as well, it's for naught. :) – DA01 Nov 30 '15 at 5:29

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.