The best inexpensive computers for 3D modeling.
If you want to install 3D rendering software, you will need to use a powerful computer. Unfortunately, workstations with advanced hardware configurations might cost an arm and a leg, but budget models can’t run such resource-consuming programs without any lags.
To take your 3D rendering skills to the pro-level, you need to use a PC designed to run complex software and the best keyboard for 3D modeling. The one thing you need to remember is that after buying the best computer for 3D modeling you will still need to work hard to polish your rendering skills.
After deciding to buy a new PC, you might find out that this task is more difficult than one might expect. You need to check if a computer has enough RAM and a recent processor with a certain number of cores. It should be powerful enough for 3D rendering and modeling.
The best workstations on the market can handle even the most demanding tasks well, but you need to understand clearly what is the difference between GPU and CPU rendering. It will help you choose a decent 3D modeling computer that will serve you for years to come.
CPU: Intel Core i3-9100 | GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 630 | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 1000GB | Weight: 11 pound
⊕ Lightweight chassis
⊕ Solid build
⊕ Several USB Type-A ports
⊕ An optical drive
⊖ Subpar computing performance
⊖ Only 180-watt power supply
This desktop computer has an eye-catching design and comes with powerful hardware, which makes it a perfect option for multitaskers. You will be impressed with its amazing performance and high speed. It is fitted with a 1 TB 7200RPM SATA hard drive, so you will have plenty of storage space to keep your files.
This PC for 3D modeling can give a boost to your productivity thanks to its remarkable specs. Windows 10 is compatible with the most demanding programs, so you can easily bring your creative ideas to fruition.
CPU: Intel Core i5-9500 | GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 630 | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 256GB | Weight: 20.96 pound
⊕ DVD reader
⊕ Impressive connectivity options
⊕ Small size
⊖ Quite expensive
⊖ Insufficient storage space
The Dell OptiPlex 3070 SFF DFF7J is a powerful desktop computer that can be used for photo editing and other advanced tasks. Fitted with an i5 CPU and 8 GB of RAM, it can be used for multitasking and can run several programs simultaneously, which makes it the best computer for 3D modeling. For instance, you can create a PowerPoint presentation while watching video tutorials or listening to podcasts.
This workstation is equipped with a 256 GB SSD, which allows it to boot pretty quickly. If you keep some important documents on a DVD, you can open them by using an integrated DVD player. Thanks to the advanced features of Windows 10 Pro, you will have constant access to your office’s domain. It is perfect for those who need to access their documents quickly.
CPU: Intel Core i9-9900K | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 SUPER | RAM: 32 GB | Storage: 1000GB | Weight: 10.14 pound
⊕ A portable design
⊕ Easy to open without tools
⊖ A noisy cooling system under load
⊖ No flash card support
⊖ Basic audio outputs
If you like big but compact computers, you will enjoy using the Obelisk. While it doesn’t have a unique design and comes with a pretty standard tower, its volume is smaller thanks to its MicroATX build. This computer for 3D modelling measures 17.1x6.5x14.1 inches. It has a small narrow case and regular height.
Thanks to its small footprint, it won’t take up much space on your desk. You can also put the tower on the floor, which will help you save space. While the earlier version of the Omen Obelisk had the same tower, its hardware was different. Another similar computer, the Maingear Vybe, was bigger as it measured 18.6x8.6x17.9 inches.
CPU: Intel Core i5-9400F | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Graphics | RAM: 8GB | Storage: 512GB | Weight: 17.81 pound
⊕ Small size
⊕ A budget model
⊕ Impressive gaming performance
⊕ Good connectivity options
⊖ An interior is not well-thought-out
If you are on a budget, you might be discouraged from buying a computer for 3D modeling because such models are pretty expensive. However, there are plenty of affordable options on the market. For instance, you can purchase the Acer Nitro 50 for $846.99. I have tested an upgraded model that costs $1,199.99.
A tower is rather small and can be compared with cheap and mid-tier options. Despite some minor shortcomings, the Nitro 50 is a decent computer for 3D modeling and rendering fitted with a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 GPU and the Intel Core i7-8700 processor.
CPU: Intel i5 9600K | GPU: GIGABYTE NVIDIA RTX 2060 6GB | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1000GB | Weight: 32 pound
⊕ Affordable price
⊕ Immersive gaming experience
⊕ Many ports
⊕ Virtually noiseless performance
⊖ No USB-C support
⊖ Comes without a DVD-drive
⊖ Overly expensive
The iBUYPOWER 137i was designed for those who like playing the recent titles at high resolution, which makes this computer suitable for a variety of 3D modeling tasks.
Thanks to the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060, you can enjoy an immersive gaming experience and solve complex tasks with ease. This computer for 3D rendering is equipped with an Intel Core processor. You can overclock it to boost its performance.
CPU: Ryzen 5 1600 6-Core 3.2 GHz | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti 4GB | RAM: 16GB | Storage: 1000GB | Weight: 23 pound
⊕ Great performance
⊕ Simple to upgrade
⊕ A nice design of the case
⊕ Speedy performance
⊖ No SSD
⊖ Unavailable in many stores
⊖ Prone to overheating
The SkyTech Blaze is a powerful desktop for 3D modeling that will be a perfect option for budget-conscious designers. It comes with a remarkable set of specifications and can be easily upgraded, so you can use it for years to come.
Featuring a stylish design, this affordable model is fitted with a Ryzen 5 1600 CPU and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti GPU, which allows for an immersive 3D modeling experience. While it doesn’t have a good cooling system, you can disregard this shortcoming because of the low price.
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Until recently, a powerful processor was a must for any rendering computer, which is why many creative professionals were trying to purchase a PC with the recent CPU. Such computers are still pretty expensive, so they can hardly be considered as a perfect solution for budget-conscious users. Fortunately, CPU rendering is no longer the only option available. Nowadays, it’s much more important to have a computer with a powerful GPU.
Despite that, you still need a good CPU for faster performance. A processor that has many cores can handle complex tasks more quickly. If you are interested in single-threaded performance, make sure to consider Intel processors for video editing. When it comes to multi-threaded performance, AMD processors can easily beat its counterparts. Both these brands are known for releasing great processors for rendering computers. If you want to purchase a CPU from other manufacturers, make sure to buy a compatible main circuit board, RAM and a cooler for your processor.
When it comes to rendering tasks, the overall speed depends on your GPU. If it’s quite powerful, you will be able to cope with complex tasks more quickly. GPU rendering is sometimes more than 10x faster than CPU rendering, especially if your computer is fitted with an NVIDIA graphics card for video editing. While both AMD’s OpenCL and NVIDIA’s CUDA can be used for GPU rendering, the latter delivers faster performance.
The key advantage of the OpenCL framework is that it’s compatible with any GPU, while CUDA was created only for NVIDIA processors. If you are wondering which option to choose, pick an NVIDIA GPU if the software you need to use supports CUDA. While OpenCL might become a better option in the future, nowadays, it’s safer to select an NVIDIA’s GPU.
Most modern computers come with decent RAM, so you won’t need to worry about it much. Nowadays, there are plenty of models that feature DDR4 RAM. The most affordable computers are fitted with dual-channel RAM, while expensive options usually have quad-channel RAM. While the former provide more impressive performance than a single stick, the latter can easily beat them when it comes to the overall speed. For rendering tasks, you need to have at least 8 GB of RAM, since your computer will use a lot of RAM to display the models that you are editing on the screen. If you use Cinema 4D or other similar programs, you might need to have even more RAM. The good thing is that it’s pretty easy to upgrade if you have free RAM slots.
You don’t need to have a lot of storage space to work on 3D designs. A large HDD or SSD is important only if you need to edit video content, create animation or play recent games. Images and other files used for modeling take significantly less space than media content or games.
If your workstation for 3D rendering is fitted with a 1 TB Western Digital HDD, you will have enough space to store your files. It’s especially useful for those who deal with various animation tasks. When you need to enhance high-resolution videos, you will need to have plenty of storage space to keep all the files. Thankfully, it’s pretty to easy to upgrade your PC with a new hard drive. Even if you don’t have loads of cash, you will easily find a good HDD with an impressive storage capacity. Besides, such drives are even more affordable than they used to be.
If you prioritize speed, make sure to buy a workstation with an SSD. Such drives are much faster. They allow you to install OS and various programs in no time. If you store temporary files on an SSD when working on your project, it will facilitate your workflow. Every program will run faster as well. If you have an HDD and then upgrade your computer with a SATA SSD, you will instantly notice a performance boost. Those who have some cash laying around can purchase a PCIe SSD. While it is pretty expensive, it delivers better performance. If your budget is limited, it’s better to buy a less expensive SATA SSD and spend the rest on a good processor or GPU.
If you purchase a PSU that is incompatible with your device or has poor quality, it might result in hardware failure. The most common reason is insufficient wattage. While manufacturers indicate specifications on the packaging, the reality might be quite different. If you aren’t an electrical engineer, it might be a good idea to contact an expert before choosing a PSU to avoid possible problems with your PC. It might be worth spending extra on a good power supply as it will serve you for 5-10 years.
When picking a computer for 3D animation and rendering, it’s crucial to ensure that it has both a good processor and a high-end GPU. It’s better to select an NVIDIA graphics card to make the most out of its 3D rendering capabilities. If you don’t have much money to spend, opt for dual-channel RAM. 8-16 GB will be enough for most rendering tasks. It’s a good idea to pick an SSD since you will have plenty of storage space for your needs. As for a case, select an option that has one or more 5.25-inch external drive bays. It will be especially helpful if your software comes on a CD or if you need to burn rendered videos to CDs or DVDs.