Suitable Mac system for Maya 2012-13

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Old 01 January 2013   #16
@AJ1: Did you really say Windows XP?
Commodore 64 @ 1MHz
1541 Floppy Drive

"Like stone we battle the wind... Beat down and strangle the rains..."
Old 01 January 2013   #17
Quote: Qt is a windowing tool kit, and really doesn't have much to do with performance in Mental Ray or Vray. Multitasking works fine on all consumer OS's, and Maya still crashes and leaks memory on OSX, Windows, and Linux. I think your reading into things a bit much.

Sorry, I should have been more specific. I meant that the Qt versions of Maya (like the older Motif ones) recommend certain default compilers on each platform (GCC on Windows/Linux and MS VS compiler on Windows) for API compatibility. That is what is negatively affecting performance for Windows Maya renderers like mental ray.

And I'm looking at the System Monitor util in CentOS for my 3770K and it's showing 12 threads (6 hyperthreaded cores).

Quote: Now one could argue that if Mac OS or Linux had a similar process manager in play, they could perform even better than Windows under such optimization.

They have a better kernel so you won't "feel" mental ray renders like you do in Windows, but if you want to adjust process priority, Unix systems have had nice/renice since way before Windows had process lasso. There are plenty of snake-oil "speed up" apps that prioritize foreground applications in OS X but they are useless since they just use built-in tools like renice.

Last edited by cgbeige : 01 January 2013 at 03:36 PM.
Old 01 January 2013   #18
@Sho: Haha, yea. A lot of places used it up until last year, and I'm sure there are still some hold outs. XP can still get it done.

@Mike: Lol, I'm not sure how you managed to squeeze 12T from a 4 core chip, but I would love to know.

Check out these video lectures to a Computer Science 101 class taught at IUPUI. The first few lectures serve as a great introduction to computing. There are also some nice classes on Coursera you might enjoy, like History of the Internet from UM and a few CS101 classes from places like Harvard, MIT, and Stanford.

If you want to learn a little high level programming and some Qt, playing around in Python could be a good place to start. Although its Qt4, it was still a great read. I haven't even touched Qt5 yet, although its apparently a huge update.

If you want to get your hands dirty, check out Qt programming in C++. This one does give a brief intro to C++.

Sorry to completely derail the thread.


Last edited by AJ1 : 01 January 2013 at 09:20 PM.
Old 01 January 2013   #19
No worries-good conversation happening.

Ok so my IT contact and I have put together a potential PC build that is within our budget and we think could be a decent machine for rendering. We based it loosely on information in a thread dealing with benchmark render times for certain builds at Digital Tutors (not sure posting links to other forums is allowed).

Anyway, those builds were out of our budget but please have a look at this one and any thoughts would be appreciated. Please keep in mind that we do have constraints but we have sort of been conservative here so there is some room to upgrade:

Old 01 January 2013   #20
Hey man,

A good place to start would be a more exact budget. You can always have a faster system for another $50, so it helps to draw the line somewhere.

Are you and your IT contact comfortable with assembling a system from parts? You can really save some additional cash if your willing to go this route.

Old 01 January 2013   #21
For starters, that i7-3770 (the four-core version, evidently, not the 12) would likely be faster than the base Xeon. A 320W power supply just seems absurdly low for a rendering workstation. 16GB of RAM is a better starting point as well. If you can afford an SSD for the boot drive, do that, and use the tank drives for storage.

Those graphics cards offered are garbage. The Quadro 600 will be a waste outright for Maya, and the 2000 isn't much better. You'd be better off with just about any modern gaming card.

Honestly at that price, I think you could do a lot better building on your own. I think if you wanted to do that though you wouldn't be posting this topic at all, however! That machine just isn't a lot of bang for your buck, at all. For that price you could build two 8-core renderstations, basically, and double down on your investment.
Commodore 64 @ 1MHz
1541 Floppy Drive

"Like stone we battle the wind... Beat down and strangle the rains..."
Old 01 January 2013   #22
Originally Posted by AJ1:
@Mike: Lol, I'm not sure how you managed to squeeze 12T from a 4 core chip, but I would love to know.

oops - you're right. it's the 3930K I have here that's 6-core.
Old 01 January 2013   #23
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