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Buying a Workstation for AE

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Marc Lindeman
Buying a Workstation for AE
on Sep 7, 2015 at 9:45:33 pm

So I'm finally jumping off a Mac to move over to an HP Z820 workstation because I really need a higher caliber workflow in after effects.

My iMac and MacPros just can't perform as well as a Z820 so time to jump. It's frustrating because I love Macs but since AE has the same interface in both PC and Mac, not a big deal in the end.

Having said that, can anyone give me the best configurations and hardware, graphics, and sound options to make sure I am indeed making a really informed decision with all of the best possible options.

Let's imagine you're building the perfect machine to run AE and all it's super intensive graphic power sucking resources (OPEN GL, MERCURY ENGINE, 3D), money not an issue, what would it look like.

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Walter Soyka
Re: Buying a Workstation for AE
on Sep 7, 2015 at 11:26:24 pm

Honestly, magic 8-ball style, "Ask again later." It's hard to say with specificity what the the best hardware configuration to run Ae over the next few years will be. The Ae team is in the middle of a huge re-architecture project, and until that is further along, it's difficult to say for sure how to balance core count against clock speed.

If I had to buy today, I would aim for something middle-of-the-road: not too few cores, but not too slow per-core.

I suspect that everything I wrote in the old thread you just commented on still applies. Balance in a workstation matters, so the more you spend in any one area, the more you need to spend in all others to make it worthwhile.

No matter what, for Ae, you will certainly want lots of RAM. More RAM lets you more effectively use the old multiprocessing feature on CC 2014 and prior, and will let Ae keep more cached in RAM if a smarter multiprocessing feature makes its way back.

GPU still doesn't really matter to Ae unless you're specifically talking about the ray-tracing renderer (which is not the future of 3D in Ae [link]).

Note, too, that the current HP big workstation is the Z840. Compared to the Z820, it has an updated chipset and support for faster DDR4 RAM.

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]

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