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Is it better to get a workstation grade GPU and use it for gaming or get a gaming GPU and use it for workstation tasks?

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Posted · Original PosterOP

I am building a PC that will both be my personal and work pc. I enjoy gaming but also do a lot with after effects, premier, and photoshop, and some solid works when I am feeling frisky. I am willing to spend upwards of $1500 dollars on a graphics solution whether that be one really nice card or a few mid rang cards. the computer as I have it priced out right now is:

 

  • CPU: intel i7-5820k 6 core at 3.3GHz
  • Motherboard: Asus X99 -E WS 
  • Memory: Adata XPG Z1 DDR4 Quad channel 32gig (4/8) kit running at 2800MHz
  • graphics: ???
  • storage: either a raided configuration with sata or an M.2, not sure yet. I have a bit more research to do there. 

and I will pick out a case and power supply to suit whatever I decide with the specs. I used to be a bit of a pc enthusiast but had to take a break when my parents decided it was time for me to move out on my own and I had to spend my money on "bills" and "surviving." pfft parents just don't understand. Any who that was like 7 years ago so I am kind of behind the times and I have made a business for myself and need a computer to suit my needs. My main question is about the graphics card but any recommendations or pointers are welcome.     

 

edit: so the consensus seems pretty clear get a high powered gaming card. so if you don't mind a secondary question. At my price point of $1500 i could afford a titan or I can get 2 980ti cards and sli them together. Would I gain anything from having 2 cards?   

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its very simple: workstation cards dont game at all afaik.

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For gaming, workstation cards are... well... crap! They don't even have half of the single precision power normal cards have, they are simplay designed for workstation tasks which often require high DOUBLE-precision power. They are powerful, but not at all optimized for gaming and normal tasks.


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One of the titans other than the titan X.


An AMD cpu has no place in a solely gaming build, end of.

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a 980ti would do you well. a titan x if you feel you would benefit from more than 6gb vram. 

 

if your prepared to pay for a work station card get a pair of 980ti's, you'll get ultimate performance in both worlds then!


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i would get the titan z


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I am building a PC that will both be my personal and work pc. I enjoy gaming but also do a lot with after effects, premier, and photoshop, and some solid works when I am feeling frisky. I am willing to spend upwards of $1500 dollars on a graphics solution whether that be one really nice card or a few mid rang cards. the computer as I have it priced out right now is:

 

  • CPU: intel i7-5820k 6 core at 3.3GHz
  • Motherboard: Asus X99 -E WS 
  • Memory: Adata XPG Z1 DDR4 Quad channel 32gig (4/8) kit running at 2800MHz
  • graphics: ???
  • storage: either a raided configuration with sata or an M.2, not sure yet. I have a bit more research to do there. 

and I will pick out a case and power supply to suit whatever I decide with the specs. I used to be a bit of a pc enthusiast but had to take a break when my parents decided it was time for me to move out on my own and I had to spend my money on "bills" and "surviving." pfft parents just don't understand. Any who that was like 7 years ago so I am kind of behind the times and I have made a business for myself and need a computer to suit my needs. My main question is about the graphics card but any recommendations or pointers are welcome.     

If its a workstation then you are not getting consumer grade gpus, you are getting a quadro or a fire pro.

and a titan is worse than the 980ti. The only better thing is the VRAM

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its very simple: workstation cards dont game at all afaik.

They can run games, but the performance won't be super great - it's not due to the hardware though. It's due to driver optimization.


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a 980ti would do you well. a titan x if you feel you would benefit from more than 6gb vram. 

 

if your prepared to pay for a work station card get a pair of 980ti's, you'll get ultimate performance in both worlds then!

Unless you need double precision computing. Maxwell falls flat on its face there.


"It pays to keep an open mind, but not so open your brains fall out." - Carl Sagan.

"If you place a piece of bread somewhere on Earth, and another one on that point's antipodes, well you made yourself an Earth-sandwich." - Michael from Vsauce.

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Get a gamingcard for gaming and put a quatro or firepro in there for work related things


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I would go with dual r9 290s. The r9 290 is the base of the firepro w8100, so you would get a good rendering card with a pretty good gaming card.

So, you could put two of them in crossfire, and get good gaming performance, and then switch one of them to a rendering card. So you have one rendering card and one gaming card. Then again, you could get a Fury (X), a Titan X, a 980ti or whatever with a rendering card, but I think you might be able to get better performance with dual 290s, especially after the new catalyst drivers have been released.

So, I'd suggest 2x sapphire vapor x r9 290's, which would go for about $660 on amazon. That leaves some room for some upgrades of other things. I mean, that is what I would do, and take the excess and get some good software for your computer. You could also get some water cooling equipment with that excess.

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Gaming cards will fair much better at professional apps than Workstation cards do as gaming cards.

Don't worry about workstation cards until you start paying bills with your work, where your time = money.

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What type of monitor do you have?

 

SLI 980 TIs would give you much more FPS than a single Titan X and be really good at 4k gaming at high-ultra AAA settings. 

 

Titan X would be more stable without the SLI baggage in games. But it needs a REALLY good OC which is hard to achive on reference model. So EVGA Titan X hybrid would be my choice. 

 

My personal recommendation would be to go with 1 980 Ti and OC it until Pascal comes out then upgrade if you feel you need too. 

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What type of monitor do you have?

 

SLI 980 TIs would give you much more FPS than a single Titan X and be really good at 4k gaming at high-ultra AAA settings. 

 

Titan X would be more stable without the SLI baggage in games. But it needs a REALLY good OC which is hard to achive on reference model. So EVGA Titan X hybrid would be my choice. 

 

My personal recommendation would be to go with 1 980 Ti and OC it until Pascal comes out then upgrade if you feel you need too. 

 

EDIT: Edited post for clarity.

 

If both his "business" and SolidWorks utilizes double-precision, the "Maxwell" GeForce cards will be a FAILURE.

In my above mentioned scenario, and what the two moderators are getting at, it would be best to get GPU(s) without Double-Precision removed -- i.e. the original GTX Titan.


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If his "business" and SolidWorks requires double-precision, the "Maxwell" GeForce cards will be a FAILURE.

In my above mentioned scenario, and what the two moderators are getting at, it would be best to get GPU(s) without Double-Precision removed -- i.e. the original GTX Titan.

OP said

 

 I enjoy gaming but also do a lot with after effects, premier, and photoshop, and some solid works when I am feeling frisky. 

"enjoy gaming" i.e. important

"after effects"

"premier"

"photoshop"

 

"some solid works when frisky." i.e. not very important.

 

So a 980 Ti or Titan X hits first 4 major criteria. No clue bout SW but it doesn't sound like it's important anyways.  

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-snip-

 

 

I am building a PC that will both be my personal and work pc. I enjoy gaming but also do a lot with after effects, premier, and photoshop, and some solid works...

...

...

...I have made a business for myself and need a computer to suit my needs. My main question is about the graphics card but any recommendations or pointers are welcome.     

 

After Effects, Premier, Photoshop, and SolidWorks all can benefit from a CUDA/Double Precision GPU.

Observing that he now needs to move out from from his parents', and is running his own "business", and willing to drop $1,500 on a GPU, I am assuming Work >> Play at this stage in life.

Play is for his leisure / private time.

 

(Not everyone is 16~20 years old where gaming is everything.  Heck, I'm at home, right now, working on designing my "Pseudo Random Number Generator" chip with VHDL on my AMD "Gaming" system).

 

IMO, from the information we are provided so far, what is OP's "business" will be decide whether a "Gaming" GPU, or "Compute" GPU will be the most suitable.


Intel Z390 Rig ( *NEW* Primary )

Intel X99 Rig (Officially Decommissioned, Dead CPU returned to Intel)

  • i7-8086K @ 5.1 GHz (still tweaking) -- i7-6800K
  • Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Master -- ASUS X99 Deluxe
  • Sapphire NITRO+ RX 5700 XT Special Edition -- 2x Sapphire NITRO R9-Fury in Crossfire
  • 32GB G.Skill TridentZ DDR4-3000 CL14 (16GB TridentZ RGB + 16GB Red/Black TridentZ)
  • SanDisk 480 GB SSD + 1TB Samsung 860 EVO + 1TB Intel 660p NVMe
  • EVGA SuperNOVA 850W P2 + Red/White CableMod Cables
  • Phanteks Enthoo Luxe Tempered Glass Edition
  • Ekwb Custom loop
  • Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum + Corsair K70 (Red LED, anodized black, Cheery MX Browns)

Intel Z97 Rig (Secondary)

  • Intel i5-4690K 4.8 GHz
  • ASUS ROG Maximus VII Hero Z97
  • Sapphire Vapor-X HD 7950 EVGA GTX 1070 SC Black Edition ACX 3.0
  • 20 GB (8GB X 2 + 4GB X 1) Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600 MHz
  • Corsair A50 air cooler  NZXT X61
  • Crucial MX500 1TB SSD + SanDisk Ultra II 240GB SSD + WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD + Kingston V300 120GB SSD [non-gimped version]
  • Antec New TruePower 550W EVGA G2 650W + White CableMod cables
  • Cooler Master HAF 912 White NZXT S340 Elite w/ white LED stips

AMD 990FX Rig (Decommissioned)

  • FX-8350 @ 4.8 / 4.9 GHz (given up on the 5.0 / 5.1 GHz attempt)
  • ASUS ROG Crosshair V Formula 990FX
  • 12 GB (4 GB X 3) G.Skill RipJawsX DDR3 @ 1866 MHz
  • Sapphire Vapor-X HD 7970 + Sapphire Dual-X HD 7970 in Crossfire  Sapphire NITRO R9-Fury in Crossfire *NONE*
  • Thermaltake Frio w/ Cooler Master JetFlo's in push-pull
  • Samsung 850 EVO 500GB SSD + Kingston V300 120GB SSD + WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD
  • Corsair TX850 (ver.1)
  • Cooler Master HAF 932

 

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After Effects, Premier, Photoshop, and SolidWorks all can benefit from a CUDA/Double Precision GPU.

Observing that he now needs to move out from from his parents', and is running his own "business", and willing to drop $1,500 on a GPU, I am assuming Work >> Play at this stage in life.

Play is for his leisure / private time.

 

(Not everyone is 16~20 years old where gaming is everything.  Heck, I'm at home, right now, working on designing my "Pseudo Random Number Generator" chip with VHDL on my AMD "Gaming" system).

 

IMO, from the information we are provided so far, what is OP's "business" will be decide whether a "Gaming" GPU, or "Compute" GPU will be the most suitable.

First you said, "If SolidWorks" prequires double precision." and now it's "Solidworks can benefit from double precision." hmm how'd you become an expert so fast? I'm not say that it doesn't but it's interesting how now you know the exact performance benefits (and in adobe suite too) 

 

980 Ti and Titan X both support CUDA (unless I am missing something)

Also I'm pretty sure CUDA isn't just double precision.

Also Titan X and 980 Ti can do double precision they are just not as good as let's say an original Titan or Quadro.

 

From the list of apps he wanted to use a Titan X made more sense. 

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First you said, "If SolidWorks" prequires double precision." and now it's "Solidworks can benefit from double precision." hmm how'd you become an expert so fast? I'm not say that it doesn't but it's interesting how now you know the exact performance benefits (and in adobe suite too)

980 Ti and Titan X both support CUDA (unless I am missing something)

Also I'm pretty sure CUDA isn't just double precision.

Also Titan X and 980 Ti can do double precision they are just not as good as let's say an original Titan or Quadro.

From the list of apps he wanted to use a Titan X made more sense.

That was my mistake if my sentence did not come out as intended, or as clear. It should have been

"If both his "business" and SolidWorks utilizes double-precision..."

I have made the correction in my previous post.

I know for a fact SolidWorks utilizes Double Precision; hence, a Workstation GPU will provide benefits. This is not from speculation -- this is from the fact that I've used SolidWorks and AutoCAD as an Engineering student. Adobe software; similar fashion -- it will/can make use of a Double Precision, and Workstaion graphics cards.

Again, we do not know what form of "business" OP is operating, so I won't continue to throw out further GPU recommendations (i.e. AMD GPUs since Adobe software can now accelerate rendering / compute times with OpenCL/OpenGL).

I am indicating the original Titan, because it is a CUDA accelerated GPU, I am sure everyone acknowledges that, so I did not see the need to explain, and has Double Precision functionality.

If you are becoming on the offensive with remarks such as, "hmm how'd you become an expert so fast?" then I see no point to further discuss this topic with you.

My initial intention was merely to elaborate on what the two forum moderators, and a few others, were attempting to imply.


Intel Z390 Rig ( *NEW* Primary )

Intel X99 Rig (Officially Decommissioned, Dead CPU returned to Intel)

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  • 32GB G.Skill TridentZ DDR4-3000 CL14 (16GB TridentZ RGB + 16GB Red/Black TridentZ)
  • SanDisk 480 GB SSD + 1TB Samsung 860 EVO + 1TB Intel 660p NVMe
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  • Ekwb Custom loop
  • Logitech G502 Proteus Spectrum + Corsair K70 (Red LED, anodized black, Cheery MX Browns)

Intel Z97 Rig (Secondary)

  • Intel i5-4690K 4.8 GHz
  • ASUS ROG Maximus VII Hero Z97
  • Sapphire Vapor-X HD 7950 EVGA GTX 1070 SC Black Edition ACX 3.0
  • 20 GB (8GB X 2 + 4GB X 1) Corsair Vengeance DDR3 1600 MHz
  • Corsair A50 air cooler  NZXT X61
  • Crucial MX500 1TB SSD + SanDisk Ultra II 240GB SSD + WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD + Kingston V300 120GB SSD [non-gimped version]
  • Antec New TruePower 550W EVGA G2 650W + White CableMod cables
  • Cooler Master HAF 912 White NZXT S340 Elite w/ white LED stips

AMD 990FX Rig (Decommissioned)

  • FX-8350 @ 4.8 / 4.9 GHz (given up on the 5.0 / 5.1 GHz attempt)
  • ASUS ROG Crosshair V Formula 990FX
  • 12 GB (4 GB X 3) G.Skill RipJawsX DDR3 @ 1866 MHz
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  • Samsung 850 EVO 500GB SSD + Kingston V300 120GB SSD + WD Caviar Black 1TB HDD
  • Corsair TX850 (ver.1)
  • Cooler Master HAF 932

 

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As mentioned workstation grade cards don't do well in games, especially when you look at price to performance and while I don't know about the rendering programs you listed I do know a lot of pro software these days can take advantage of gaming grade cards (e.g. AutoCAD recently added DX support) however I can tell you that a lot of the SolidWorks features that you gain by having a Quadro are locked out of gaming grade cards, you simply wont have access to things like RealView and the Quadro drivers are specifically optimised for pro software bringing performance gains beyond their raw power, that being said gaming cards are perfectly capable of running SolidWorks without issues as long as you don't mind loosing a couple of (non-modelling related) features, most of what SolidWorks does it does on the CPU anyway so the GPU really isn't the most important part of a SolidWorks build, a fast single core is where you get the most benifit.

Quadros only really make sense if you are making money with them, they use higher quality parts and go through more rigorous testing prior to shipping and have support focused on pro software, if you are a casual professional or don't have a huge budget to eek out the last little bit of performance workstation grade hardware offers gaming grade cards are definitely the way to go (especially if you want to game on them too ;)).

Also if you want to get some of the locked features but don't want to spend a lot you can use Fermi hardware with a soft mod to make it look like a Quadro or Kepler hardware with a hard mod to make it look like a Quadro, I modded my old GTX680 to look like a K5000 which then allows you to install Quadro drivers and unlocks all the pro options in SolidWorks :)

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So one issue not many people seemed to think about. Many if not most workstation accelerated programs utilize double precision. Maxwell cards (and gaming cards in general) are god awful at double precision computation. This the the reason why Linus has so many regular titans /titan blacks in his company. Because before the titan x the titan line was originally intended as a ultra everything dp monster.

Aka to be honest if you really are doing a lot of workstation programs while also looking for gaming ability then the original titan (black) was quite literally designed for you.


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