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Advise Please- Buying new desktop optimised for houdini


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Hi All, 

Firstly I apologise if the following is tedious, I am totally new to the forum and happy to take suggestions for other places for these kinds of queries but.......

I am looking to invest up to £4000 in a new desktop PC ( Tower only) and was wondering if somebody would be able to help me understand what things are important for allowing it to process houdini quicker? 

(Sorry I am embarrassingly novice when it comes to these matters) 

I don't want to overspend if i don't have to, for example, what is the difference between a 3k pc and a 4k pc really? 

I have in the past bought from PCspecialist but I am more than open to other companies. 

I would also consider trying to build it myself if I had the correct guidance with online tutorials etc. 

Thanks in advance for any advice 










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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi Barry,
I am pretty new myself but hope this helps .

From what I have gathered so far better CPU for Sims and Mantra and large RAM for caching it really benefits from it.
If you don't use GPU renders like Redshift or Octane than multiple GPU's wont be helpful instead more RAM and CPU threads & clock will benefit mantra and sims.But keep in mind SIMS accelerate considerably so  due to OPENCL support so a decent GPU is a must.
To put things in perspective.Here is the build I am looking at.

3900x 12core/24 thread   around  500$           
Board X570 no SLI around            160$ (No SLI means scalabilty for later if want to use GPU renderers)
750 W PSU                                   60$
16 Gb DDR 4 Ram                         80$ (Recommended around 64GB)
2070 Super                                  500$
                                                  1300$   £1060Decent Entry Level.

You can wait for 3950x that is supposed to be 3rd gen 16core/32 thread.  will be around £610
If you are using GPU renderers than Go for a board with SLI support  upto 3 GPU's         £300
2x 2080 super around £1400-1500 or you can buy 1 and add later                          2x  £1500 (if you use GPU renderers)
Ram at least 3200MHz ddr4 64gb preferably 32gb stick if 4 DIMM board
if you want to scale to 128 other wise 4x 16Gb                                                            £350
Supply accordingly how much you want to scale 250 wattEach GPU = 500W
+ 105 W  600W +250W  extra GPU scalability = 850W ~             1000-1200+ watt       £160-250

now add in a water block and decent case with fans.
This is not actual build but just to give you some perspective.

A rig posted by user caskal 

Gigabyte x399 Aorus Xtreme   £450 
Threadripper 2950x               
£ 754 current(25aug)  (price went down to £600 20 july and lowest £360 17 july/15 Aug)
G Skill TridentZ 3200mhz CL14 (128 gb)   
£170x8=£1,360‬  (current price is £230)
4 x EVGA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti  £1020x4=4080

                                             £6,640 4GPU 128 GB ram    £2904  1 GPU 64GB ram (+ you can save on board if you don't want to scale later.)


Hope it helps.
Best ,

Edited by MrPace
Misclicked wasn't finished. and some misspells 2nd edit 2nd rig
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Two months ago I buyed a pc for Houdini, and I'm pretty happy with it, I have :

- Ryzen 7 2700X

- Corsair H150i

- MSI X470 Pro Carbon

- RTX 2080 MSI Aero

- 4 * 16 Go DDR4 Corsair Ram

- 970 Evo 250 Go for Windows and Softs

- 6 To Seagate Barracuda for files (I'm thinking about investing some money in a nas for the future, and more SSD's)

- Corsair Carbide 270r

- Be Quiet! Straight Power Gold 750W


It's pretty fast, stay cool when simulating or rendering (cpu doesn't exceed 60 degrees at 100% of use), but it's doing a bit of noise (which doesn't bother me when I'm sleeping), for a total cost of 2600 euros. I know I missed the 3900X and the rtx super series but I'll upgrade later. What I can advice you is to take the max ram you can, and one gpu to begin seems honest. With redshift 2.6, my 2080 does the job nicely and fast. 

I suggest you to go with the new Ryzen 9 3900X, 128 Go of ram if you can afford, and a 2080 Ti. This would be a nice pc for Houdini


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