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David Smith avatar image
David Smith asked

Advice needed: CPU or GPU render machine 2021

Hi, i'm looking to buy a fast Arnold render machine, I currently use CPU rendering. I'm thinking either:

Stick with CPU Rendering... Threadripper 3990x with a Geforce RTX3070 or similar

Switch to GPU Rendering... Lower core Threadripper and buy 3 RTX3090's when they become available.

I'm new to GPU rendering, it's a lot of money so I want to make the right choice. Does anyone know which of the two setups (or similar priced) will be a faster option for rendering with Arnold 6? I'd like to keep it to one machine and licence.


Thank you very much in advance

render farm
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stephen maury avatar image
stephen maury answered

I also have the same questions, not having an arnold benchmark does not help. I asked the same type of question on facebook, and most of them say that for LOOK DEV GPU ok, but for final rendering you have to do it on CPU.

Afterwards I think the Threadripper 3990x even for the dev look must be top, on the other hand I thought more about buying the Threadripper 3970x.

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David Smith avatar image
David Smith answered

Hi Stephen

As of a couple of hours ago I ended up going for the 3990x with a RTX 3080, so i'm sticking to CPU rendering for now. I've used a 3970x and look dev is not a problem on that CPU, its really quick, certainly quick enough to not benefit much for being quicker (on the scene's I do anyway).

The closest comparisons I could find were on Techgage, and it seemed like i'd need 2 x RTX 3090's to get the same kind of speed as a 3990x (Jesus, thats confusing).

It did feel a bit backwards as the entire industry seems to be moving to GPU, but for Arnold it seemed that the memory issues of GPU and feature limitations right now meant that CPU just felt a bit more robust and a safe bet.

Good luck



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Hi David, happy for you, for the 3990x with a RTX 3080, powerful combination.
Thank you comfort my choice to buy the 3970x.
can't wait to test that.

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