Windows laptop hardware for Rhino?

Hi Everyone,

I’m looking for recommendations on laptop hardware suitable for running Rhino 3D. I’m a longtime user, but I’ve always worked from a desktop PC and have no clue what to look for. I’m looking for specs so that I can pass this along to our IT department.

I appreciate any advice you’re able to provide!

If you search the Hardware category for “laptop”, you will find enough comments and suggestions you could spend weeks reading through them.

Thanks John. Sorry for repeating other posts. I’m new here. I’m hoping for a quick list of recommendations as I don’t have long to research this.

Well it’s hard to make specific recommendations, do you want a typical average sort of size laptop, an ultraportable, or something that’s more portable in theory than reality? Half the questions on this forum are people having issues due to Intel’s terrible integrated video, so something that doesn’t have it at all–like a Ryzen 4000 machine–would give you a better experience than most laptop Rhino users regardless of any other specs. Generally you want as much CPU and GPU power as budget and space permits…a portable is always a compromise of some sort, it’s very much up to you(or your IT staff) where to draw the line.

Thanks Jim. I’ll be honest and say that I dislike working CAD from a laptop, so my experience using one is very limited. It doesn’t need to be ultra portable, as I won’t be hauling it from site to site on a regular basis. Just between home and work usually. So I’d say something average sized to absolutely massive would be okay. Price-wise, I don’t know where their limit is, but $3000-plus seems a bit steep to me for something that may be used occasionally. Hopefully that helps narrow it down a bit…

Intel Cpu
Rhino is about single core speed mainy.
Nvidia graphics with many cuda cores.
Most renderengines that utilizes the Gpu are better on nvidia.
Much ram. 16 GB is minimum.
Fast and large ssd. 512 GB is good. 256 minimum.

Great screen, fidelity over resolution imo, some disagree but you’ll stare at it all day so it better be good! Dull screens makes everything look booring.
Silent running so a good fan sollution and a well built chassis is key.
Good battery life.
Good mouse.

Keep in mind that the fastest CPU and the fastest GPU both eat power and generate heat, turning the laptop hot, noisy and battery hungry. So fastest isn’t always what you wan’t.

Everything costs so don’t cut too many corners. And they all have some flaws :wink:
I ended up with a Razer and they are well built.

Thanks Holo. I believe this with give IT something to chew on.

Never bargain shop for the thing you use to make your living off of…

if you were a race car driver, you’d never go… “yes…that sure is nice…got anything cheaper?”

Overbuy for computers now, and use it for 5 years…the ROI is unquestionable and indisputable.

cheap out now and you can watch the money siphon out of your business as you wait…sit on tech support and replace parts that you burned up.

(NOTE: not an official mcneel recommendation)

I personally use Boxx machine and TitanUSA machines for my design biz. They are custom build to handle an absolute beating, specifically tailored for my needs and as such are expensive. (boxx more so than titan)

In 7 years my boxx was down once, for 24 hours when a harddrive died. They overnighted me a new one (at my expense as the machine was way out of warranty) and also offered to give me a local source with part numbers, if I needed it faster and wanted to pick it up myself. This machine ran maxwell renders at close to 100% cpu for 40 hours straight back to back to back for years… My daughter still uses it today for solidworks at her engineering school it’t now 8 years old.

My Titan is newer and I can’t hit it hard enough for it to even notice. It was expensive. But I never wait, it never breaks. In consulting where time is money, this thing makes me money and paid for itself in the first 3 months I owned it.

It always sucks to write that big check when you buys a machine… it sucks WAY more to lose money from cheap equipment.

How much of these recommendations is influenced by rendering? Do you have recommendations for someone who does very little to no rendering?

Only the CUDA Cores. If little rendering then it’s down to GPU speed and vram if your models are complex. Many cores and much ram if a lot of parallel processing. But for pure modelling mainly single core speed. No benefit from xeon vs i7 or i9 basically. (Xeons are slower so they can run 24/7 at max load with little error or overheating)

I have not tried quadro vs geforce lately to see if there are any benefits.

What does your typical file look like?