Manual drafting is so old school. Engineers, architects, and construction managers have all moved to computer-aided design (CAD). CAD can provide 2D and 3D visuals of designs and streamline plan development and modification. Yet not every CAD computer is the same. Here’s why we should build your next CAD computer.
CAD software is at work in many industries. Using this technology has many advantages, including:
helping stakeholders understand;
Still, choosing the right computer for CAD can be challenging. For one thing, computers are always evolving; plus, the CAD program requires a desktop with real power. When you’re working with large design files, it can put your computer to the test. Building your own CAD computer workstation makes sense.
Why Customize Your CAD Computer
Of course, there are many places you can go to buy your next computer. You can go online or walk into a big-box store and buy a generic desktop for your design work, but you’ll soon find that most standard builds are not optimized for CAD functionality. And you don’t want to risk having a sub-par computer when it comes to a core piece of your day-to-day work.
Finding the right computer to run CAD requires knowledge of how CAD software uses the hardware. Some might recommend that you buy the fastest central processing unit (CPU); however, you must understand how you get that speed. Some computers these days have multiple CPU cores. This means they can spread the workload across many processing units. This gets the task done faster (think of it as having a team of eight complete a task instead of one speedy person).
The thing is, that team of eight cannot do the job of CAD. Many CAD apps and functions will work only on a single processing core. So, you could have those many cores, but the software will use only one of them. What you need to look for when customizing your CAD computer is a fast single-core speed.
Simultaneously, if you can have a high CPU speed and many cores, you’ll be even better off. The many cores can speed up rendering, simulation, or other processing tasks you don’t have to sit and attend.
The Right CAD Computer for Your Needs
In building your CAD computer, you can also select the best graphics card for your needs. The video card handles the display of 2D and 3D models on the screen. If you’re primarily working with 2D models, you may not need to boost your graphics processing unit. You could put your budget towards the solid-state drive (SSD) or random-access memory (RAM).
Many CAD machines have specific video cards installed in them, such as NVidia’s Quadro series. Still, gaming GeForce GTX or RTX cards are faster than almost all Quadro offerings. However, the Quadro series still offers some benefits depending on the work you do.
Building a computer for CAD can also help with software developer support. Some CAD developers support only professional-level CPUs (such as Xeon), which means you’d be on your own with a mainstream desktop CPU. Keep in mind, though, that Xeons cost more and run slower.
All these decisions require you to balance your needs with what the computer can do. You know how to tweak a balustrade or soffit, and we know how to customize the best CAD computer build for you. Please work with us to get the most bang for your buck and make the most of your next CAD computer.