Gt 640 for Heavy Maya work

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Lil Chillbil, Jun 26, 2013.

  1. Lil Chillbil macrumors 65816

    Lil Chillbil

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    Jan 30, 2012
    Location:
    California
    #1
    I was wondering if my current setup would work for a massive project I am undertaking where I have to learn maya then use it everyday for a year and then I get a fat check :D If there are any upgrades I need I have to let them know upfront


    CPU 5.6Ghz Core i5 Quadcore ivy bridge
    Ram 16gb 2.6Ghz corsair vengence
    Gpu 3gb overclocked edition gt640
    8tb storage onboard
    ssd 256gb

    os x 10.8.4
     
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
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    located
    #2
    I guess your budget is limited? Why not consider a GDDR5 GPU like a GTX660 TI or GTX670, as the GDDR3 RAM is limiting nowadays even with a slightly faster processor on the GPU.

    I have the GTX670 and it is quite powerful in Cinema 4D (viewport rendering with complex models/scenes and such).

    And is your i5 overclocked or why is it at 5.6 GHz?
     
  3. Lil Chillbil thread starter macrumors 65816

    Lil Chillbil

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    #3
    Its overclocked, and the budget for any upgrades is $500 and my current power supply is only 400 watts and really has to go
     
  4. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
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    #4
    But the OC is only minimal, the GDDR3 RAM will be the limiting factor. Maybe look into GDDR5 GPUs with your power requirements or include 100 USD for a 650W PSU and get a 400 USD GPU. The GTX 660Ti and 670 can be had for less than that, if I remember correctly (got my TX670 for 390 €, incl. VAT).

    If you exclude "heavy" from your requirement, you can do with a GDDR3 GPU though.
     
  5. Lil Chillbil thread starter macrumors 65816

    Lil Chillbil

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    #5
    Ok so heres my plan


    Sell the gt 640 online
    sell the psu online


    i'll have like $600 total then for upgrades
    $100 for a 620 watt antec psu
    $500 for a brand new 770


    btw I was not refering to the gpu I was actually answering your question about my cpu
     
  6. violst macrumors 6502

    violst

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    Jun 14, 2012
    #6
    I think you need to clarify what you mean when you say "I have to learn maya"
    It can take people years to "learn" maya, it is a very complex and not very user friendly software.

    Do you already have a working knowledge of it and just need to lean a specific function of it. It seems to me that hardware limitations is only half your battle.

    Good luck.
     
  7. Tutor, Jun 27, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013

    Tutor macrumors 65816

    Tutor

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    #7
    If you're going with Maya (or any other 3d route that uses either CUDA and/or OpenCL), my suggestion would be to keep the GT 640. I use them for interactivity while my other GPUs compute. Plan for the near future and get a 1500+ W PSU (~ $350). Get a more powerful refurb CUDA/OpenCL video card from EVGA by constantly checking their B-Stock [ http://www.evga.com/Products/ProductList.aspx?type=8 ]. Then, go here [ http://render.otoy.com/ ] and read, download the demo and user manual and watch the videos. After you've saved up some more ducats, get Octane Render w/the Maya plugin. Then, as finances permit, add another CUDA/OpenCL card to the mix.

    P.S. I've got a grave yard box of < 750 W PSUs that resulted from my earlier short-sighted decisions.

    Training: check out (1) http://www.digitaltutors.com/training/maya-tutorials and (2) http://www.vtc.com/products/Maya-2013-Tutorials.htm .
     
  8. Lil Chillbil thread starter macrumors 65816

    Lil Chillbil

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    #8
    Let me put it this way, I have never even seen a screenshot of maya but since I have 4 months of solid free time on my hands before this and the entire worlds knowledge of the subject at my fingertips thanks to google. I decided to take the job

    ----------

    I'll think about it, Thanks for the info
     
  9. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #9
    Have you ever used any other 3d apps? Certain things remain similar in principle such as realtime and offline shaders, UVs, geometry, joint systems, and light types. There are certain similarities in terms of tools from application to application, but that is not an application you want to stumble your way through without some prior knowledge on the subject. A good starter book would help, but there's too much stuff that works in strange ways to really learn it quickly on your own. Google will not be of as much help as you think. Actually the Autodesk documentation is much more helpful as its descriptions are very thorough.
     
  10. Lil Chillbil thread starter macrumors 65816

    Lil Chillbil

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    #10
    Just picked up maya for dummies today


    I knew those barns and noble gift cards would come in handy sometime :p
     
  11. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #11
    There's a maya for dummies book? This is really one of those things where it depends how far you want to go, but really learning 3d software can be quite involved. I'm going to assume you're starting off with modeling. I would say start with easy projects. If you're trying anything larger or more complex, ensure you have a lot of reference material. A blockout stage always helps, especially when primitive objects can work as visual placeholders, but that doesn't always work. That software has some strange behavior that has persisted for years. Different tools were added at different times. They don't deprecate that many things because some studio might still require them or the newer version lacks specific functionality somewhere. Just look at how many dynamics systems are present in that package without the use of additional commercial plugins.

    I wouldn't devote all your time to it, as there's virtually no chance you're going to be strong with the program in 4 months unless you have prior 3d experience. You need time to absorb what you learn and may wish to take note of problems to be addressed later.
     
  12. violst macrumors 6502

    violst

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    Jun 14, 2012
    #12
    There are so many aspects of 3D that you need to learn that it can be overwhelming.
    For example there is lighting and all the subgroups to the different lights and shadows, and IMO its one of the most important and over looked aspects of 3D.

    Then there is modeling and good topology and loop flow, using quads and not tries, the subgroups to that, hard surface modeling vs subdivision/hypernurb modeling.

    There is procedural materials and understanding how to create complex materials within your material editor/tree understanding index of refraction for glass and water. Understanding HDRI for good reflections and gi rendering.

    There is texturing and the subgroups to that, UV unwrapping, painting, sculpting, baking and so on.
    Then there is understanding your rendering engine, and all the work behind good rendering i.e.. GI, Ambient occlusion, DOF, physical renders vs standard renders and so on.

    Then there is rigging, skinning, animating, dynamics, hair, partical systems and on and on.

    To start with just learning to navigate the interface of maya and what everything is and does is a daunting task if you have never used it before let alone used any 3D app. And lastly the overall principles of 3D and 3D space.

    My friend I think you are going to be in for a rude awakening. And if you promised to take on a job involving maya I hope you are going to give it 100% and just know that you are in for a long up hill battle.

    Like I said before it can take people years to get a truly full understanding of 3D and Maya.

    best of luck.
     
  13. thekev, Jun 27, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013

    thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2010
    #13
    Blah I forgot to ask this in the scope of my long rant. OP how much art background do you have? Can you draw? Can you draw in perspective? Any understanding of color theory? Foundation skills make this stuff so much easier.


    I touched on the number of topics a bit. The problem is you're guiding him way off topic here. Hypernurbs don't exist in maya. Nurbs are crap in maya. The curves are okay, but those tools aren't very modern or very useful. You can approximate a lot of that smooth curvature functionality with a lattice when modeling. It's pretty safe to ignore. The same goes for the subdivision surface menu. It's not subdivision surfaces, just those stupid ones with floating cvs. They make for a convoluted workflow that is not well explained in any literature and therefore best avoided unless you specifically require them. I would suggest avoiding really learning rigging too in favor of an auto rigger until the OP is comfortable with the software and other topics overall.

    I don't know why lighting is considered difficult. It's just poorly explained most of the time. You have to hunt for any real information on how things are sampled and anything about shader design. Personally I think it would be a lot easier to learn some 3d principles in software where the UI itself and to a lesser degree the tool behavior isn't such a big initial hurdle.

    Also aside from a bit of weighting, who really uses the sculpt and paint tools in maya? That is just guiding him into other software again that is best approached after understanding the initial stuff.
     
  14. violst macrumors 6502

    violst

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    #14
    I'm not guiding him off topic on the contrary I'm trying to shed some light on how much of a daunting task he's preparing to under take.

    I didn't say lighting was hard I said it is overlooked for its importance and not utilized correctly. Most people learn how to set up 3 point lighting with soft shadow maps and they use that setup for all their renders. 9 out of 10 times I see a render that doesn't look right its because of the lighting. A render can go a long way with the correct lighting.

    I said "subdivision/hypernurb modeling" because he may be familiar with how C4D uses subD but they call it hypernurbs. So he would know that what I'm referring to is the same thing.

    Also I didn't say he needed to learn how to rig but rigging is a another big aspect of 3D that at some point may need to be learned on top of the list of what I thought was critical to learn to get the most out of your 3D work.

    If the OP was leaning maya just for the sake of it I would say have fun take your time and don't get to overwhelmed. But since he needs to lean it for a upcoming job in four months time, He needs to be aware of what an up hill battle he has in front of him. In four months from now he is going to be expected to start producing professional level work. For someone with no 3D experience it can be a overwhelming task.

    And once again I wish him the best of luck.
     
  15. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #15
    He doesn't sound like he knows much of anything on these subjects. I recognized hypernurbs, but I don't really know Cinema4D very well. simsaladimbamba was the one who mentioned it. Personally I think trying to learn the software rather than the subject is the wrong approach, but I wouldn't approach all subjects simultaneously.
     
  16. violst macrumors 6502

    violst

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    Jun 14, 2012
    #16
    I agree. Its a big task in front of him. He's got a lot to learn in a little time.

    And the least of his worries should be the GT 640.
     
  17. thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    Aug 5, 2010
    #17
    I agree with you there. That is a complete misunderstanding of priorities. Learning it just requires a gpu that doesn't bug out. Other than that it's meaningless as in learning the software your scenes aren't likely to be large enough to crush the thing during scene navigation. I suspect it won't go anywhere.
     
  18. handsome pete macrumors 68000

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    Aug 15, 2008
    #18
    Very good point. That's one of the problems taking on a job specific to software, but having little to no experience in the field to begin with. I've been trying to wrap my head around C4D for the past couple of weeks, but it's been slow going. I'm pretty proficient in Maya, so it gets frustrating hearing so many people claim C4D is "easier" to use. So while I'm a leg up already knowing the principles behind 3D design/animation, getting used to the new interface and somewhat different methodology is tricky. Mapping similar keyboard shortcuts only helps so much.

    And to the OP, it also might not be a bad idea to subscribe to Lynda for a couple of months and go through their training series. I admit that watching some of their stuff could be used as a great substitute for a prescription sleep aid, but I do think there is great value in seeing actions and results in real time versus just through pictures or text in a book.
     
  19. Lil Chillbil thread starter macrumors 65816

    Lil Chillbil

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    #19

    Well I took 3 years of photoshop art classes before they threw me out, they taught us color theory but I don't really remember much

    ----------


    I actually was able to get one of my friends who took 8 years of maya classes to teach me all I need to know


    the bad news is that last night my motherboard failed on my pc but frys says I can either wait for another i5 board from the manufactuer, or I could get a brand new gaming board from their parts department with an i7 and a gt 760
     
  20. thekev, Jun 28, 2013
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2013

    thekev macrumors 604

    thekev

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    #20
    I have very little experience with cinema 4D. What I noticed was compared to maya the same functions aren't repeated in so many places across the UI. It doesn't have as much in the way of really ancient stuff cluttering the UI. The cheaper versions apparently lack any dynamics plugins. I'm not sure what the renderer is like. If I used it, I would probably plan on something like vray for c4d as I've never seen anything mentioned about its renderer. Anyway I know a couple Cinema 4D users. I just don't know it well myself.

    If you're going to do any heavy modeling, you should have some understanding of perspective. Color theory is more important when it comes to setting up shaders, textures and lighting. It's not that intuitive without understanding things like color temperature of light and reflections.

    That can actually be helpful. Starter books tend to leave out a lot of stuff about 3d, and it would definitely be helpful having someone to explain what parts are simply not frequently used given the sheer number of nodes in that program. A lot of those things aren't even difficult to understand if you can find the correct information. By all you need to know, do you mean already? You still never mentioned why you needed to learn it or what you needed to learn. I'm curious because the way you initially worded it was very broadly. The application itself has so many quirks to it that it takes years to be fully proficient. You are lucky if you have help and should take advantage of that, but you probably shouldn't stop learning after 3 months.

    Also you're way too focused on hardware. If it lags too much while modeling, that is a concern. If it lags too much animating something, build a lighter proxy.
     

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