AutoCAD Hardware Specification Breakdown Report

What is AutoCAD?

AutoCAD is a piece of Computer Aided Design Software which is used to produce highly detailed technical 2D or 3D drawings. It is used by graphic designers and architects.

A detailed overview of Resource Management in AutoCAD

AutoCAD renders computer graphics. This has the potential to be machine resource intensive. It is best to have a PC that can handle the increased resources than a machine that is barely meeting the minimum runtime requirements. This is to avoid freezing, slow speeds and further degradation of the machine.

Central Processing Unit (CPU)

AutoCAD is not known for its use of Multithreading.

  • ‘Multithreading is a technique by which a single set of code can be used by several processers at different stages of execution.’ It essentially allows workload to be distributed across multiple CPU cores, therefore achieving a higher performance.

AutoCAD relies mainly on single core processor power. Processor power is measured in ‘Clock Speed’. This is the number of instructions a single processor core can carry out per second. The higher the clock speed, the greater number of instructions that can be carried out per second.

The minimum suggestion by the AutoCAD software specification is 2.5GHz. The recommended Clock Speed is 3+GHz

  • 3Ghz is equal 3 billion instructions per second. 1Hz is equal to one instruction per second.

Graphic Processing Unit (GPU)

AutoCAD produces high detailed technical 2D/3D drawings. Ideally, this requires the use of a GPU. This is a piece of hardware that is specifically designed for graphics display. They help to relieve the processing load on the CPU, which allows the CPU to focus onto other tasks.

You won’t need a top-of-the-line GPU to run AutoCAD, but a card that can help reduce the stress on the processor would be ideal.

  • AutoCAD Specifications Minimum: 1 GB GPU with 29 GB/s Bandwidth and DirectX 11 compliant. Recommended: 4 GB GPU with 106 GB/s Bandwidth and DirectX 11 compliant

Secondary Storage:

AutoCAD autosaves at regular intervals. Any program with intensive 3D processing may crash every now and again. This is to prevent work loss. The more 3D objects being displayed/rendered, the longer it takes to autosave. You do not want a Hard Disk Drive (HDD) for AutoCAD usage. An HDD is slow due its moving parts. It is extremely unideal. The use of a Solid-State Drive (SSD) is more than ideal. This is due to their fast speeds and lack of moving parts.

Random Access Memory (RAM)

RAM stores programs that are currently in use. This helps with multitasking, The larger the amount of RAM, the smoother the multitasking will be. RAM allows the CPU to access data/instructions at a quicker rate. AutoCAD tends to eat up RAM. Having enough spare available memory can reduce latency issues.

  • AutoCAD Specification: Minimum: 8GB of RAM. Recommended: 16GB of RAM.

Download: AutoCAD Specification Report

I then broke down a small summary of the user’s chosen machines

Can your machines run AutoCAD? – Theorised Machine Benchmark.

  • SerialNumberHidden1 – OptiPlex 3060 – Not suitable.
    • Current CPU: Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-8500T @ 2.10GHz – The Clock Speed on this machine is lower than the minimum requirement instructed by AutoCAD. This CPU may struggle to keep up with the demand of AutoCAD.
    • Current Memory: 8GB – Although this has met the minimum requirements for memory, the most ideal would be 16GB of RAM. The user will most likely have teams, excel sheets & chrome open in the background, which are all memory intensive programs already.
    • Secondary Storage: Solid State Drive. Perfect 🙂
    • GPU: No GPU. This machine will require a GPU. But as this is an OptiPlex 3060. This can only take a low-profile graphics card.
  • SerialNumberHidden2– Custom Build? – Currently not suited, possibly ideal if upgraded
    • Current CPU: Intel Pentium G4400 @ 3.30GHz – This is a very good average processor. Despite its age, it has a speed rank out of 700/1400 when compared to other most used processors. This processor works very well for a simple desktop user but may struggle as a workstation on its own. A GPU to processing relive stress would be ideal.
    • Current Memory: 4GB – This will need to be upgraded.
    • Secondary Storage: Solid State Drive. Perfect 🙂
    • GPU: No GPU. This machine will require a GPU. However, I could not find the model of this machine within System Information. I am unsure if its current motherboard could have a GPU installed.

You may be able to use SerialNumberHidden2. If not able to upgrade, perhaps a new machine would be in order.

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