How to configure your workstation for Solidworks
Solidworks is an intuitive CAD software designed for designers and engineers to streamline the product development process. By simplifying the work steps, innovative designs can be brought to market faster.
The right Processor power
Solidworks use only 1-2 processor cores for construction and assemblies. CAD applications like Solidworks prefer a high clock frequency. We recommand a workstation with an Intel Xeon Quad- or Six-Core processor with a clock frequency from 3.5 GHz.
Intel Xeon processors offer you a whole range of advantages compared to the Intel Core series (i3, i5, i7 and i9). Xeon CPUs can manage significantly more memory than the Intel Core family. With the help of the larger cache memory, CPU accesses are accelerated. Xeon processors support Error Correction Code memory. Xeon CPUs are able to detect and report hardware errors to the operating system to prevent system crashes. Almost all tasks are done with the processor unit and the main memory. Solidworks use multiple CPU cores only for rendering and simulation to process and render the 3D CAD model. The more cores available, the faster the rendering process will be.
Dassault Systems, the manufacturer of Solidworks, recommends at least 8GB RAM. This is maximum for elementary 3D part creation and smaller assemblies. The main memory is the linchpin of all Solidworks calculation tasks. The capacity of the RAM depends strongly on the number and size of the parts of their assemblies. We recommend to provide at least 16 GB RAM for Solidworks. For larger assemblies at least 32 GB RAM and for the use of Solidworks Simulation we recommend 64 GB RAM.
Optimal graphics performance
The Solidworks modules Photoview, Photoworks and Visualize take advantage of nVidia's CUDA core technology, which can process rendering in parallel and much faster than the workstation's CPU. The load is distributed to the graphics processor and the rendering time is significantly reduced by this process. The number of CUDA cores on your graphics card affects the time Solidworks takes to render your CAD models. The higher the number of CUDA cores on your graphics card, the shorter the render times for your CAD models will be. We recommend using a nVidia Quadro series graphics card certified for Solidworks. Certified graphics cards offer you the highest quality and detail for your CAD design to achieve 100 percent accurate calculations. Further advantages are the optimal driver support and the support of certain functions such as Realview and Ambient Occlusion. Solidworks works closely with nVidia developers to continuously improve and enhance the productivity, stability and reliability of 3D graphics for Solidworks users in combination with Quadro graphics cards. Depending on your budget and CAD requirements, we'll find the best graphics solution for you. Most of our customers choose an nVidia Quadro P2000, nVidia M4000 or nVidia Quadro P4000. A real alternative are the AMD graphics card models of the Radeon Pro W5700, WX8200 and WX9100 series certified for Solidworks. Starting with Solidworks version 2016 the free Radeon ProRender add-in is available. The Radeon Pro Renderer uses all of Solidworks' design features to give your projects the required sharpness of detail. For Solidworks Visualize with nVIDIA iRay GPU support we recommend a Quadro RTX 4000 with 8GB VRAM. For the AMD Pro renderer a FirePro W8100 or a Radeon XW7100 is a good choice. If you switch on the Denoiser in Solidworks Visualize (from version 2018, Serive Pack 3) with an nVIDIA Quadro from 4GB VRAM on, you can reduce your rendering times considerably.
When is the use of a second GPU useful?
Do you use Solidworks Visualize and have to deal with large renderings? In this case a second GPU can make the difference. In Solidworks Visualize nVidia Quadro graphics cards are used for the rendering process. Your renderings are processed much faster. We recommend using one or two nVidia Quadro P5000 with full Pascal power, blazing 16GB of GDDR5X memory and 2560 CudaCores for large renderings.
Hard Disk Accelerator
Choosing a hard drive has a significant impact on performance, especially if you don't have enough memory. With an SSD M2, the workstation boots and loads the program much faster. Depending on the requirements, we recommend a correspondingly large SSD and, if necessary, an additional hard disk as a storage medium. For optimal workflow in HP Workstation, we recommend the HP Z Turbo Drive, up to four times faster, with NVMe technology integrated into an M.2 PCIe SSD storage medium. The HP Z Turbo Drive offers extremely short loading times, fast access times and improves the editing of 4K videos. First, focus on an M.2 SSD with fast access times, an nVidia Quadro graphics card, and a high-frequency CPU.
We are happy to offer you our workstation with a pre-installed license for Solidworks 2020. Ask for an offer!