Gaming card vs low end quadro card?


HI, all, I have been a Rhino user/supporter for a few months, so I am still new. I realize the question of hardware has come up and been discussed allot. My question is about more specific hardware.
I have got my hands on a slightly older (vista era) Lenovo S20 work station, with a Xeon quad core processor, and a fx580 (512mb) Nvidia Quadro card. The mobo will support ECC ram up to 24gb ddr3.

My dilemma is, should I swap my current pc for this rig. And my current rig is no slouch but is a gaming pc.

AMD 970 mobo, 12gb ddr3 ram, with a Radeon R9 290x (4gb). And an AMD 8xcore gaming processor 4ghz.

I am stuck on whether or not I would see any difference in performance for rendering. Considering the Lenovo is older and my current gaming pc is essentially new…ish.
any advice from some one who is a hardware nerd: wink: or who might have experience using both types of systems would be appreciated.
I realize if both cards were equal… 4gb gaming vs 4gb Quadro the Xeon and Quadro would win hands down. However, I am trying to decide between what I have available vs what I am currently using.

Would I be wasting my time re-arranging my desk with a busy schedule? or would I have better performance rendering by switching?

Thanks, Everyone.


(David Eränen) #2

I think your gaming PC is much, much better than the Lenovo. The Lenovo will be significantly slower in most if not all aspects of using Rhino or your computer in general. Don’t swap!



lol. Thanks for the advice David. Do you think it makes sense to step up to a Quadro card at all in my current rig vs my 290x? Or would I just be throwing dollars away for little gain?



I am working with Rhino a long time now and I experimented quite a lot with all kinds of video cards… including gamers cards, Quadros, etc. What I ended up with is an old 2nd hand Nvidia GTX 280 for a mere 30 euro. This card is a solid performer, speedy and no hickups even with 1GB models!
So if you can get a GTX in the 2xx range just try it. Highly recommended

gr, Tobias



Just a caveat here: I’m pretty sure the 280 was a dual processor while my old 270 for example was a single.



The 280 is single as well. The first dual processor gpu was the 295



Always used medium gaming cards for Rhino and never had a problem. You will not benefit from the quadros so much-especially the low end quadros. Sometimes on files with 50000 to 60000 curves (GA plans) i felt some extra Quadro power.
Some years ago there was no special driver support for Rhino by Nvidia. Maybe that changed or will change.
Rhinos hardware req. are very friendly.
I´m running my V5 Version on a 780GTX mobile without problems also on stl scan files with over 5000000 polygons. Loading takes first time a few seconds- thats all.
Often people think the equipment extends the skills.
If i go to some old folders and open projects made in Rhino2 and think about the equipment of this time- i´m wondering how it was possible with that hardware stuff.
Unless you really work on big projects with a lot of tiny parts in it (detail models of screws, hundreds of other bigger polysurfaces… …) you may invest the money. But a good organisation of modeling, layers, blocks, project splits should save most of performance trouble.
Every time i updated my hardware the new stuff was always much faster. Save your money for the next hardware update, a good monitor, or the best: a good desk and good office chair. After 7h modeling your personal feeling breaks down the workflow much more than the hardware.

1 Like


Thanks for the reply pu235, I have actually just come across a Quadro K4000 VC. (my brother owns a little computer shop) I took out my R9 290X updated to the Nvidia driver to try it out. After working with it for the last couple days, I think it is faster in some regards and not as good in others. But I will have to spend more time with it to tell. The biggest difference for me and the reason I’ll continue to use it is when I’m manipulating the camera around, an object or zooming in and out on specific points/areas the k4000 does interrupt my workflow. Whereas with the R9 I would constantly have to stop and wait a second or two for the camera to adjust.
But you are definitely right about a good desk, lol, I have made a custom setup, now all I need to get is a good chair. My back has been fried since I got really got full-time into this… the desk slump is hard to defeat.



There are also different aspects beside the display power of Quadros. In some cases stability and product reliability, support, driver support, programmability, precision. I´m sure there are many situations and software systems you better run on Quadro cards. Often used in science for calculations.



Eh sorta. The Quadros will have better driver support for certain features in certain programs, but where you really “need” one is if you want to stuff a bunch in a server for virtualized desktops, run several of them at once all synced up to run a massive video wall(somewhat of an obscure feature) or need absolutely as much power as you can get no matter how much that extra RAM and driver tweaking costs(the Quadro P5000 uses the same basic hardware as the GTX1080, the 1080ti is equivalent to the P6000.)

So I certainly would never bother buying a “Pro” card that’s less than the top of the line, unless I was running some crummy software that needs Quadro driver support to run properly at all, which is not Rhino.