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PC-Builder: Find The Best Parts For Your PC & Workstation

CG Director Author Alex Glawion  by Alex Glawion   ⋮   ⋮   918 comments
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PC-Builder: Find The Best Parts For Your PC & Workstation

The CGDirector PC-Builder helps you find the best Computer and Workstation Parts for your specific use case and available budget, by recommending highly compatible and best-performing hardware:

PC-Builder


 

How does the PC-Builder know what parts are best?

First and foremost, the PC-Builder relies on Benchmarks.

Every Hardware Component available to the PC-Builder Tool, has been put through a Series of popular Benchmarks that tell us exactly how well it performs.

Benchmarks include Cinebench, Geekbench, several GPU & CPU Render Engines such as Octane, Redshift, Vray and real-world Applications Benchmarks for all kinds of Digital Content Creation & CAD Software.

For maximum compatibility we have a lot of hardware specifications and manual testing & experience to source from.

Note: AMD CPUs are currently in the lead in most productivity software. This is reflected in the benchmarks used for the PC-Builder Tool and why AMD CPUs are so often recommended here.

Missing specific Parts / Brands?

We are extending the CGDirector PC Builder constantly. Right now, the best Hardware Components from Asus, MSI, Corsair, Seasonic, be quiet, AMD, Intel, Nvidia, Fractal Design, Samsung, Adata, ASROCK, Western Digital, Seagate, Gigabyte, Noctua, NZXT, Phanteks, Crucial, Fractal Design have been added.

More will follow, after we were able to test them thoroughly, and if we find the parts to be reliable.

Laptop Brands currently include MSI, Asus, Razer, Gigabyte with more to follow soon.

Why is the Budget Min / Max capped?

Minimum and Maximum Budget is purposely capped in the PC-Builder. This is because it would not make sense in getting an even cheaper or even more expensive PC than the suggested range for the selected use-case.

More expensive than the suggested maximum could lower the performance (as the most expensive parts are not necessarily the best for your specific use case) and less expensive than the minimum suggested budget will most likely underwhelm you in your specific use-case experience.

How does the PC-Builder calculate the parts

We assigned a minimum and maximum percentage of the total cost, that a given part is allowed to cost. This is based on our experience in building and using lots and lots of different Computers and Workstations for all kinds of use-cases.

Example GPU-Rendering:

When we select the “Purpose: GPU-Rendering”, the cheapest suggested Build consists of Parts that are very similar in price.

The CPU and GPU, for example, both cost around 200$. So both will have about 25% of the total allowed Budget assigned.

In the maximum GPU-Rendering Build, the 4x 2080Tis cost much more (5196$) than the CPU (1900X – 399$), because, of course, in GPU-Rendering the GPUs are much more important and therefore may use up much more of the total Budget.

In this case, the GPUs use up 70% of the budget and the rest of the parts are comparatively cheap.

This means, the PC-Builder gets assigned a minimumBudget-part-allowed-percentage and maximumBudget-part-allowed-percentage and in-between automatically interpolates depending on the given budget.

Of course, things such, # of GPUs, # of PCIe-Slots on the Mainboard, Power Consumption, Socket matching the Mainboard, and so on, are taken into consideration for maximum compatibility.

As always though, the tool might not be entirely free of errors and we recommend to use it with caution and only use the suggested Parts as a basis for discussion and to build upon.

How are Laptops Recommended?

The Laptop recommendation Tool is much simpler than the PC-Builder Tool, as the Laptops are already pre-built. There are different underlying Benchmarks for every Purpose, that define which Laptop is best within a certain price-range. This can vary slightly, depending on the availability and current price of the Laptops.

This way, the tool always recommends the best performing Laptops for Video Editing or Laptops for Animation for example, even if there might be more expensive Laptops that would ultimately, though, have lower performance.

Have some Parts picked but don’t know how to assemble them? Check our PC-Building Guide on how to assemble a PC.

 

Feel Free to ask for suggestions on your PC-Build in the Comments.

Alex Glawion - post author

Hi, I’m Alex, a Freelance 3D Generalist, Motion Designer and Compositor.

I’ve built a multitude of Computers, Workstations and Renderfarms and love to optimize them as much as possible.

Feel free to comment and ask for suggestions on your PC-Build or 3D-related Problem, I’ll do my best to help out!

918
Comments

KIM

can you help me build a computer for video editing?
tried using the tool but the motherboad and power supply not available here
plz help my budget is $1100

Hey Kim,

Thanks for asking!

If I may ask, what motherboard and PSU are you referring to?

If your budget is $1,100, you can get something like the below:

Parts List:

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3700X 3.6GHz 8-Core Processor ($274.49)
CPU Cooler: AMD Wraith Prism Cooler (Included with CPU) (-)
Motherboard: Gigabyte X570 Gaming X ATX AM4 ($169.99)
GPU: MSI GeForce GTX 1660 Ventus XS OC ($216.95)
Memory: 16GB (2 x 8GB) Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4-3000 CL16 ($73.99)
Storage SSD: Crucial MX500 500GB 2.5″ Solid State Drive ($69.99)
Storage PCIe-SSD: WD Black 500GB M.2 Solid State Drive ($79.99)
Storage HDD: Seagate BarraCuda Compute 2TB, 3.5″ ($54.99)
Power Supply: CORSAIR TX-M Series TX550M 550W ATX 2.4 Power Supply ($99.98)
Case: Fractal Design Focus G ATX Mid Tower Case ($55.99)

The total of the build comes up to around $1,096.36 but you can expect this build to give you a fast and smooth workflow, thanks to its Ryzen 7 3700X CPU and 16GB of RAM. It also comes with three (3) storage options: a 500GB WD Black NVMe SSD for your OS and commonly-used programs, a 500GB SATA SSD which you can use as a scratch disk, and a 2TB HDD for your other files. Let me know if this works for you.

Cheers,
Alex

Cal

Hi Alex,

I’m finally making the jump from Mac to PC; and your articles have helped me out so much, thank you!

My build is essentially set and I am going with a Ryzen 7 3700X paired with a RTX 2070 Super. However I wondered if you would be able to provide advice in regards to cooling / cases?

My intention was to use the Wraith Cooler supplied with the R7, and considering either the Corsair Carbide Series 275R Case or the SaharaGaming C500B – due to the number of supplied fans. Wondered if you could provide any input as to whether these options would supply ample enough cooling, or if there is perhaps another pairing you’d recommend?

Cheers,
Cal

Carlos

Hi Alex,

I’ve been working on mac for close to 10 years now, and I would like to switch to a laptop for modelling, FEM calculations and rendering (Catia, Fusion360, Blender and Keyshot) I’m not sure about the GPU rendering in keyshot so I’m kinda lost if I need CPU or GPU, what would be your suggestion for me on a budget of ~2000$?, Thanks

Scott S

I’m a 3D generalist whom uses Cinema 4D with Redshift and have a rather healthy budget to work with, $5k. I need a machine that is able to do it all (modeling, animation and rendering). With a budget like this one would it be better to build two machines, one for modeling, texturing, animation and simulations and a second machine for rendering. Or build one monster machine and stack a bunch of GPUs in it? Would a need a special cooling system if I were to build the single machine? Thank you for your articles. I’ve learned so much already.

John T

Been Mac for 25 years. Current studio computer is an iMac 2015, but I have decided to switch to PC this season. I rely on Davinci Resolve, Adobe Suite and Telestream Wirecast. On a $2500 budget to build. Suggestion for best graphics card and recommended RAM for my use? Thank you.

Levi Ansell

Hello,

I am looking at buying a new desktop strictly for AutoCAD & Revit, while only running Office and Internet browser in the background for daily work use. Any recommendations for a full pre-built versus building my own? I was think a intel i7 9700, 16gb RAM, SSD, with a GeForce 1060? Any full builds with these specs already?

Hey Levi,

Thanks for the comment!

If I may ask, how much are you willing to spend?

In terms of the components you have selected, these look good although you may want to get a new GPU because the GTX 1060 is an older generation NVIDIA graphics card. I suggest you consider the RTX 2060 to start things off.

As for pre-built versus building your own, each has it’s own advantage and disadvantage. With a pre-build, you just choose the configuration you like or if possible, configure your order to your liking. The drawback? Prebuilds tend to cost more. Building your own tends to be cheaper but doesn’t sacrifice of the performance because you’d be choosing the components you prefer. However, you tend to purchase all the components one by one and given the world situation right now, some PC components are hard to come by.

In case you go the pre-built route, this article can be of help: https://www.cgdirector.com/where-to-buy-pre-built-pcs-workstations/

Cheers,
Alex

mandeep

i want to study photo editing
whats the best parts
my budget is about $1000 but if lower will be better
please suggest me the best parts

Hi Mandeep,

Thanks for dropping a line!

Please have a look below for the photo-editing build I put together for you:

Parts List:

CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 3800X 3.9GHz 8-Core Processor ($328.98)
CPU Cooler: AMD Wraith Prism Cooler (Included with CPU) (-)
Motherboard: Asus TUF Gaming X570-Plus (Wi-Fi) ATX AM4 ($189.99)
GPU: MSI GeForce GTX 1660 Ventus XS 6G OC ($216.90)
Memory: 8GB (1 x 8GB) Corsair Vengeance LPX DDR4-3000 CL16 ($44.99)
Storage PCIe-SSD: WD Black 250GB M.2 Solid State Drive ($62.99)
Power Supply: Corsair CX Series CX550 550W ATX 2.4 Power Supply ($69.99)
Case: Corsair Carbide Series 200R ATX Mid Tower Case ($74.99)

The build costs around $988.83 but you can expect the Ryzen 7 3800X CPU and 8GB of RAM to deliver a more than decent performance when you’re doing your tasks. By the way, in the event you have extra money to spend for this build, you may want to increase the RAM to at least 16GB just so you’d have the headroom and make the build more future-proof as well.

Cheers,
Alex

Tina

Hi, I want to build a pc for modelling using programs like maya, z brush, or blender. My budget range is around $2200. However the asus pro x570 ace motherboard recommended is not available. Would replacing it with asus prime work? Or are there any other alternatives?

Best,
Tina

Mike Harkins

Alex…

By perfect build includes a Corsair RMX Series Platinum RM850x 850W Power Supply… but it seems they are no longer available… and neither is the RM650 version… oh and FYI it says Platinum in the build but the link goes to CORSAIR RMX Series, RM850x, 850 Watt, 80+ Gold Certified, Fully Modular Power Supply.

Any suggestions? Here is a link to my build – https://www.cgdirector.com/pc-builder/?=Db1wbn00lff

Thanks for all your work Alex!!

Jake

Hey Alex,

I’ve been running Blender Cycles on my iMac for some time now to make 3D animations, and want to upgrade because my render times are very long relying on my CPU. I use a render farm to outsource sometimes, but would like to simultaneously render the sequences myself. I’m looking at using your build tool to get a GPU based workstation, but would love to know if you have any resources for assembling the components you recommend, and what pieces to make the computer (if any) are missing in your list. The workstation I’m looking for will only be used to render out my projects.

Any help would be very appreciated.

Thank you,
Jake