08-02-2012 10:33 AM - edited 08-02-2012 11:33 AM
Hello! I just registered here after some time reading the forums, and have a few questions about workstations in general and also the Thinkstation.
I'm starting a 5-year mechanical engineering study this fall, and will soon be needing a new computer to be able to run the software i need (mainly Solidworks CAD software). I'm currently on an early 2011 MacBook Pro 15" running both OSX and Windows 7 (via Bootcamp). A laptop like the Pro though, won't serve my needs when working with solid models and simulation software.
There is then no doubt in my mind that I want a workstation. And since I already have the MacBook as a PC/Mac to carry with me to school and use at home when I'm not working, a stationary workstation will be the right way to go.
Since i have decided to go with Lenovo for my workstation whenever im ready to buy one, I need some info on what I should buy. Since I'm from Norway I'm pretty sure the online shop does not ship here, and I have found some alternatives from online stores over here. The problem is that I don't have that much computer knowledge, and I guess the solutions offered over here is pretty basic. I have been looking at the S30, and I'm curious on how it would work with software like Solidworks and what upgrades I might need if I want it to work better.
Here are the specs on the S30 that is availble:
- CPU: Intel Xeon E5-1620 (3,6GHz)
- Memory: 4GB RAM
- RAM type: DDR3 (1600MHz)
- Storage: 500GB
- Graphics card: NVIDIA Quadro 2000D
I'll leave it at that, looking forward to any replies. Other Thinkstation model suggestions are also welcome!
Solved! Go to Solution.
08-02-2012 12:57 PM
welcome to the forum!
the Q2000D would be a good choice for solidworks. it will be a good solution until you start working with larger models later in your curriculum. by then the new nvidia kepler cards will be readily available as an upgrade path. you won't likely need to upgrade for a while.
you might consider 8GB of memory rather than 4.
you might also consider an SSD as your working drive and run two HDDs in RAID 1 as a location to back up your data. if you can't get this setup as a config in your locale then you could always procure these on your own.
other than that i'd say your setup looks solid. the S30 is a great choice for your needs.
let us know if you have any other questions!
08-02-2012 01:35 PM - edited 08-02-2012 01:37 PM
Ok so basically i would do good with more RAM, and an SSD as a boot drive?
Do you have any suggestions for RAM? I have heard that they like RAM's in three's or something? Like 4GB*3 or 8GB*3? Also i have never never upgraded a computer whatsoever but i guess it's fairly easy? Especially for a workstation?
Over to the SSD. If i get a good SSD will i be able to just install it myself and the computer is set up for this? The slots are there and so on? Maybe some fairly stupid questions here but i hope you dont mind!
And last but not least. I need a screen, or two? What would you recommend?
08-03-2012 04:38 AM
ECC UDIMMs or RDIMMs are what you need. the previous generation of systems (20-series) installed memory in triplets for optimal speeds but this generation is quad-channel. install in pairs or quads for optimal results. for your needs i wouldn't stress over memory at all. 2 x 4GB or 4 x 2GB won't seem any different in your apps. 2 x 4GB would be my choice.
intel, samsung, and micron all make great SSDs. they install just like a hard drive. the S30 has six SATA connectors and is more than enough for a full chassis of storage.
displays (one or multiple) will depend on your needs and budget. you might want to check with your school this fall and see what they recommend. i'd hate to push you into the wrong setup.
08-03-2012 08:11 AM
Thanks for the tips! I'm pretty sure now what I'm going to do, but will wait until i've asked for some setup advice at my university. Fully understand that you dont want to push me into buying what might be wrong products for me.
Something like this for the SSD then:
Intel® 320 Series, 300GB, 2.5in SATA 3Gb
Or is the quality maybe not that good? The price is a bit low compared to other alternatives. I can get 100GB for the same price you know.
That would be my final question, and thank you so much for your help!
08-03-2012 12:54 PM
i personally use intel 320-series SSDs in my systems and haven't found anything to complain about. you might also consider samsung 830-series SSDs since they have a great track record and (i believe) recently saw a drop in price.
just be sure to keep good backups of your data no matter what you choose. SSDs are for the most part very reliable but backups are paramount regardless of being on mechanical or solid state drives. we can help suggest backup logistics when that time gets closer. windows 7 has a built-in backup/imaging tool that works quite well.