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What hardware makes Archicad go faster?

4hotshoes
Advocate
I will be buying a new Mac to replace my 6 year old one. But I am not sure what upgrades will make the most difference.

The new 15" MacBook Pro has options for:
Processors: Both are 8-core i9, one is 2.3 Ghz the other is 2.4 Ghz +$200
Memory: 16 or 32 GB +$400
Graphic Cards: Radon Pro (each with 4GB memory) 560X, Vega 16 +$250, Vega 20 +$350
All HD's are SSD

If I only have $600 more to upgrade the the 15 inch MacBook Pro's basic offering, which of the features above will have the most influence on keeping Archicad running fast?

In other words, if 16 GB of ram is more than enough, buying 32GB will not improve anything, Right?

Or while the higher priced graphic cards improve game play, does Archicad tap into their power to make it worth spending an extra $350?

The speed upgrade from 2.3 to 2.4 Ghz seems rather insignificant from my lack of knowledge. Is it insignificant? Is it worth the upgrade?

How does Archicad use these?

I would think that a Windows tech guru could also answer these questions too.
Todd Oeftger
Ligature Studio

AC23 and AC24 Mac MacBook Pro 15", 2019, 2.3 GHz i9, 32GB, Radeon Pro 560X 4GB, 500GB SSD, 32" Samsung Display (2560x1440)
21 REPLIES 21

rm
Enthusiast
[attachment=0]ARCHICAD MBP.png[/attachment]

Todd -

I currently use a 2015 Imac with and 1TB SSD and 32GB of RAM. Running ArchiCAD 22 works plently fast even with complex models. But that is not the whole picture.

The minute I try to run any rendering from within AC or export out to for an Artlantis or TwinMotion render, my iMac falls down. It has nothing to do with the CPU, rather the GPU is the week link in the iMac.

So the big question is, are you going to just work in ArchiCAD, a base
Robert Mariani
MARIANI design studio, PLLC
Architecture / Architectural Photography
www.robertmariani.com

Mac OSX 11.6
AC 24 / 25

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
If you run out of RAM, it doesn't matter how fast your other components are, your systems slows down dramatically.
For me, the order of priority of components are:
1. RAM
2. CPU
3. SSD (NMVe)
4. GPU
....................................................................................................
Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, NVidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

4hotshoes
Advocate
So if I have no intention of using Artlantis or TwinMotion for AC 22 or 23, I should be fine with the basic option currently being offered for the 15" MacBook Pro?
Todd Oeftger
Ligature Studio

AC23 and AC24 Mac MacBook Pro 15", 2019, 2.3 GHz i9, 32GB, Radeon Pro 560X 4GB, 500GB SSD, 32" Samsung Display (2560x1440)

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
Artlantis uses the CPU, while Twinmotion uses the GPU.

The ARCHICAD 22 System Requirements page at:

https://www.graphisoft.com/support/system_requirements/AC22/

says:
Graphics card: Dedicated OpenGL 3.3 compatible graphics card with on board memory of 1024 MB or more is recommended to fully exploit hardware acceleration capabilities. You can find a list of recommended graphics cards at: http://www.graphisoft.com/videocards

According to Apple, this card supports OpenGL 4.1, so it should be fine in that regard:

https://support.apple.com/en-il/HT202823

The 560x is probably strong enough, GPUs nowadays are very powerful, even those which are not the top-of-the-line.
....................................................................................................
Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, NVidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

Lingwisyer
Virtuoso
Do you get close to your RAM capacity on your current machine? If not, not much point in upgrading to 32Gb...

Also, do you do much multi-threaded work? Is there no option for few cores at a substantially higher clock?



Ling.
AC18-23 AUS 7000
Self-taught, bend it till it breaks.
Win10 | E5620 x 2 | 24GB | K2200

Compairing my 2009 (I think) Xeon processor HP workstation PC to a 2015 i7 in one of our macbooks in the office, the Xeon is much faster at (for example) rendering in cinerender since it holds up better in multicore processes than i7 processors. The raw speed is not something you would see a huge direct benefit from in ArchiCAD I think with the background processing being the thing that keeps it all running smoothly.

I've bought 3 iMacs over there years and I found there certainly was a sweet spot where the extra investment still made sense in keeping your machine viable for many years. There also was a point where your really overpaying to get the 'latest and greatest'. 16 GB RAM seems ok for our rendering needs, but has been a staple for many years, so for future proving, I'd say go for at least 32 GB. SSD is a must. Any halfway decent dedicated GPU should be enough for ArchiCAD. You might need something a bit better if they ever do get BIMx running nicely on desktops.

Apple hardware is pricy, but generally seems to last and is well supported by the OS for years, at least I've not had any problems with those iMacs and had each for a good 4-5 years and they held value for trading in when I upgraded (because apple fanboys!).
Erwin Edel, Project Lead, Leloup Architecten
www.leloup.nl

ArchiCAD 9-24 NED FULL
Windows 10 Pro
Adobe Design Premium CS5

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
Erwin wrote:
...for future proofing, I'd say go for at least 32 GB. SSD is a must. Any halfway decent dedicated GPU should be enough for ArchiCAD...

My opinion exactly.
....................................................................................................
Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, NVidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

rm
Enthusiast
At least speaking of working with AC on a newer Mac, perhaps true on a PC as well though I have no experience there, 32MB RAM helps to "future proof" your system, SSD better/faster than disk hard drives.

The GPUs and now eGPU availability on newer Macs since High Sierra came out, is another issue to consider.

The people at Epic / TwinMotion, seem to point to getting the FASTEST possible AMD GPU cards possible for Mac users, as nvidia no longer supported by Apple.....not now anyway.

So its not clear to me if the goal is to produce the fastest renderings with TwinMotion, models produced in ArchiCAD, if it makes more sense to spec the fastest GPU Apple offers in their MBP or iMacs or if it makes sense to get the lowest grade GPU from Apple then add an eGPU which gives you the flexibility to move it to different machines or just keep it in your office and use the one onboard GPU with the MBP when you are on the road?
Robert Mariani
MARIANI design studio, PLLC
Architecture / Architectural Photography
www.robertmariani.com

Mac OSX 11.6
AC 24 / 25

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
rm wrote:
The GPUs and now eGPU availability on newer Macs since High Sierra came out, is another issue to consider.

The people at Epic / TwinMotion, seem to point to getting the FASTEST possible AMD GPU cards possible for Mac users, as nvidia no longer supported by Apple.....not now anyway.


He said he does not want to use it for Artlantis or Twinmotion:

So if I have no intention of using Artlantis or TwinMotion for AC 22 or 23, I should be fine with the basic option currently being offered for the 15" MacBook Pro?
....................................................................................................
Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, NVidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

Lingwisyer
Virtuoso
What RAM configurations are available in the MacBook Pro? How many DIMM slots are there? How easy is it to access the DIMM slots? If there are 4 slots, and you can get 2x8GB sticks, I would say to go for the better CPU for now, then in the future, you can add another 2x8GB sticks.



Ling.
AC18-23 AUS 7000
Self-taught, bend it till it breaks.
Win10 | E5620 x 2 | 24GB | K2200

rm
Enthusiast
I'm sorry, are we not allowed to ask questions here? I can read what he wrote about not using it for Artlantis or TwinMotion. But perhaps there are other people in his same position who might benefit from a response to my added comments about gpu as well. If you you don't wish to answer with a helpful comment, perhaps no comment is best.

BTW, there is clearly something wrong with my account here on this forum. Not only that I cannot upload jpegs in post, now when I try to use the reply with quotes option, it never shows the quotes in the preview window, is that normal site behavior?

LaszloNagy wrote:
rm wrote:
The GPUs and now eGPU availability on newer Macs since High Sierra came out, is another issue to consider.

The people at Epic / TwinMotion, seem to point to getting the FASTEST possible AMD GPU cards possible for Mac users, as nvidia no longer supported by Apple.....not now anyway.


He said he does not want to use it for Artlantis or Twinmotion:

So if I have no intention of using Artlantis or TwinMotion for AC 22 or 23, I should be fine with the basic option currently being offered for the 15" MacBook Pro?
Robert Mariani
MARIANI design studio, PLLC
Architecture / Architectural Photography
www.robertmariani.com

Mac OSX 11.6
AC 24 / 25

rm
Enthusiast
Lingwisyer wrote:
What RAM configurations are available in the MacBook Pro? How many DIMM slots are there? How easy is it to access the DIMM slots? If there are 4 slots, and you can get 2x8GB sticks, I would say to go for the better CPU for now, then in the future, you can add another 2x8GB sticks.



Ling.
Ling -

On previous versions of MBP, you could add or change out memory. Unfortunately, Apple only offers factory build options. So on MBP you get either 16 or 32 GB of RAM. That is why I suggested getting more RAM instead of the faster CPU. Virtually every online review of the newest MBP with the i9 processor shows that the increase in cost for the fastest processor does not net a very good return on investment. Hence the reviewers indicate spending the additional money on RAM instead and or adding a faster GPU.
Robert Mariani
MARIANI design studio, PLLC
Architecture / Architectural Photography
www.robertmariani.com

Mac OSX 11.6
AC 24 / 25

Lingwisyer
Virtuoso
On previous versions of MBP, you could add or change out memory. Unfortunately, Apple only offers factory build options. So on MBP you get either 16 or 32 GB of RAM.

So they solder the RAM on now and / or use all DIMM slots (4x4 = 16GB or 4x8 = 32GB)? Whelp...
rm wrote:
never shows the quotes

This looks rather odd as the BBCode looks correct but it is not converting it in only your posts...



Ling.
AC18-23 AUS 7000
Self-taught, bend it till it breaks.
Win10 | E5620 x 2 | 24GB | K2200

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
rm wrote:
I'm sorry, are we not allowed to ask questions here?

Sorry Robert if you feel offended. I usually like to answer just the questions of the original poster and not bring additional topics that can complicate the situation. But I understand you point, which is also totally valid.

By the way, the BBCode setting in your Profile was set to disable BBCode by default, this is why the quotes were not displaying correctly. I have modified this setting for you so now they should display correctly.

I have also fixed them in your posts so now they are displayed fine.
For anyone who has this problem, this can be done by Editing the post, and unchecking the "Disable BBCode" checkbox below the Editing field, then clicking the "Submit" button.
....................................................................................................
Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, NVidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

Miha_M
Expert
LaszloNagy wrote:
...
1. RAM
2. CPU
3. SSD (NMVe)
4. GPU
I would agree 100 % with Laszlo here. But only within the same CPU generation (Moore's law)!
RAM, CPU & SSD are important for bare Archicad functionality. GPU & GPU RAM are important for everthing displayed in 3D. Since V22 I think Archicad does use the GPU's power for rendernig also, maybe for some other display options as well, as it does work much smoother. So maybe one should consider more CUDA power to be future proof? As for RAM I am using 24GB ECC and have no problems at all.

Archicad 4.55 - 24 | HP Z800 | Dual Xeon X5667 | 48 GB RAM | Nvidia Quadro P1000 @ Windows 10 Pro x64

As far as I know CUDA is no longer available after High Sierra, since current support for nVidia is lackluster at best and no new mac machines are being made with nVidia GPU.

Cinerender does not use the GPU for anything that I'm aware of (on windows at least).

Sadly there has been no noticeable development in over a year: https://devtalk.nvidia.com/default/topic/1042520/drivers/-when-will-the-nvidia-web-drivers-be-releas...
Erwin Edel, Project Lead, Leloup Architecten
www.leloup.nl

ArchiCAD 9-24 NED FULL
Windows 10 Pro
Adobe Design Premium CS5

4hotshoes
Advocate
Thanks for all your input. This has been helpful. I welcome more comments as well. For now, I am just adding RAM until I get busy enough to expand or my needs evolve. The message here seems to be consistent. It is good to know that Archicad alone does not require a super GPU. It is an amazing app for all that it does with fairly standard hardware. For now I don’t even have time to create detailed models that are photorealistic.
Todd Oeftger
Ligature Studio

AC23 and AC24 Mac MacBook Pro 15", 2019, 2.3 GHz i9, 32GB, Radeon Pro 560X 4GB, 500GB SSD, 32" Samsung Display (2560x1440)

Miha_M
Expert
Erwin wrote:
Cinerender does not use the GPU for anything that I'm aware of (on windows at least).
True. The GPU is used for 2D graphic acceleration since v22. https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=12&v=n7Gemx6e6HA

Archicad 4.55 - 24 | HP Z800 | Dual Xeon X5667 | 48 GB RAM | Nvidia Quadro P1000 @ Windows 10 Pro x64

rm
Enthusiast
LaszloNagy wrote:

Sorry Robert if you feel offended. I usually like to answer just the questions of the original poster and not bring additional topics that can complicate the situation. But I understand you point, which is also totally valid.

By the way, the BBCode setting in your Profile was set to disable BBCode by default, this is why the quotes were not displaying correctly. I have modified this setting for you so now they should display correctly.
Lazlo -

Thanks for fixing how quotes work on my setup!

As to your other point, I completely understand, sometimes the original posters thread gets "hijacked" and taken a completely different direction. So I appreciate your effort to keep the comments on point. In this case, as I think you realize, I thought given the original post, CPU and GPU comments were relevant.

To the point, Miha_M rightly pointed us to Graphisoft's own link showing GPU does make a difference in screen redraws. I was not aware that, which makes my question about whether going with internal GPU or an aftermarket eGPU on a Mac is a better route. I guess knowing the GPU does affect redraw speed, makes this question relevant to PCS as well! The advantage to my PC using colleagues, is they can probably upgrade on their laptops, Apple does not let its customers do that.

Miha_M, thanks for posting that GS link, that is very relevant to this discussion.

Thank you!
Robert Mariani
MARIANI design studio, PLLC
Architecture / Architectural Photography
www.robertmariani.com

Mac OSX 11.6
AC 24 / 25

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