Hi! I am a long-time reader of SPCR, it feels nice to finally post in the forums.
I'm building a cheap workstation for my sister who is getting her master degree in architecture. As far as I know she's using Autocad/Sketchup/3dsMax/Photoshop on daily basis. Rendering stuff in Kerkythea. She's not working on sophisticated stuff that requires top notch hardware but her current laptop with first gen i3 is terrible in rendering. This built should be good enough to give 2-3 years of no frustration.
I'm from central europe prices are little higher here, also there's not much choice for used stuff.CPU:
Intel Xeon® Processor E3-1230V2 - 283$
As integrated graphics and overclocking is not needed, best performance for the buck? Or maybe it's better to get older, used sandy bridge i5-2400 for 90$ less and invest in cheap 128gb ssd for the system?Board:
MSI B75MA-E33 - 69$
It's cheap and has Ivy support out of the box, plus USB3 and SATAIII for the future use.RAM:
2 x Kingston HyperX 4GB 1600MHz DDR3 Non-ECC CL9 DIMM - 50$
Only two slots on the motherboard but for now 2x8gb is over the budget. 1600Mhz CL9 would be enough?GPU:
AMD FirePro v3900 - 133$
I've ditched consumer cards after reading some reviews, workstation quadro and firepro seems to outperform them by a large margin. Or am I wrong and should go with HD6570/7750 for the price? Another option is aftermarket firepro v4800 for 50$ less, I couldn't find a direct comparison but it seems it would be a little faster.HDD:
E-bay, but new with warranty, WD5003ABYX RAID EDITION 4 - 65$
This wd black is fast and as far as I know reliable, any other options? Maybe 1TB wd green or performance will suffer?
I've got cases, power supplies, fans lying around
300W or 350W psu for this build?
Very cheap, possibly quiet cpu cooler that will outperform the stock one? Or should I just replace the fan on intel radiator?