Solidworks

Solidworks

SolidWorks is a solid modeling computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided engineering (CAE) computer program.

Hardware Recommendations

Processor

Selecting the number of processing cores and frequency in your workstation is critical. Design within the Solidworks software are single-threaded (frequency bound) tasks, meaning they rely primarily on a single processor core. Thus, a CPU with less cores, but high operating frequency (clock speed) will offer the best overall performance.

Since Windows operating system also utilizes a couple cores, we recommend a 4 core processor. If you will be multi-tasking with a variety of applications, go with a 6- or 8-core processor. Simulation and rendering outside of Solidworks utilize multiple cores simultaneously. Therefore, if you incorporate these applications into your Solidworks workflow, we recommend a 8- to 16-core processor to complete your renderings or simulations faster.

Processors have base and turbo clock speeds. An example is a CPU model with 6 processing cores with a 3.8GHz base frequency and a 4.6GHz turbo frequency. If the system tasks are utilizing all 6 cores, the CPU will function at 3.8GHz. If the system is utilizing 1 core, the CPU will function at the 4.6GHz turbo. The CPU will function between 3.8GHz and 4.6GHz depending on the number of processing cores utilized. We recommend a 4GHz+ turbo frequency.

Intel offers the Core i5/i7/i9 processors as the consumer series and the Xeon processors as the professional series. In the past, Xeon CPUs were more powerful than their Core-series counterparts. Today, however, there is little functional difference between the two Intel product families for workstations. Core-series processors, especially with the 'K' designation (e.g. the Core i7-10700K) have the highest clock speeds, while the Xeon models maximize the number of cores. Since the clock speed impacts Solidworks performance, a Core series CPU is perfectly fine. You can opt for a Xeon if you prefer to stick with enterprise-class components developed for 24/7 operation and intensive workloads.

Graphics

NVIDIA offers the GeForce series graphics cards for consumers and the Quadro series graphics cards for professionals. For many CAD applications including AutoCAD and Revit, there is no advanage of going the the professional NVIDIA Quadro series, except for getting support from the CAD application vendor. The NVIDIA GeForce series offers a better bang for the buck. However, Solidworks is the only application that takes advantage of the different drivers for the NVIDIA Quadro series to enable some features. For example, Solidworks has a feature called RealView, which is only supported on the Quadro. We recommend the NVIDIA Quadro series.

For Solidworks, selecting a significantly more powerful graphics card will not result in a dramatic performance increase. We recommend the NVIDIA Quadro RTX A2000 as an ideal mid-range graphics card for most SOLIDWORKS design workflows. We recommend the NVIDIA Quadro RTX A4000 for faster rebuilds and and overall improved interactivity with large assemblies.

Dassault certified NVIDIA Quadro series
NVIDIA Quadro RTX A5000 24GB (massive assemblies)
NVIDIA Quadro RTX A4000 16GB (extremely complex assemblies)
NVIDIA Quadro RTX A2000 12GB (complex assemblies; most popular)
NVIDIA Quadro RTX A2000 6GB (moderate assemblies)

Storage

We recommend a solid-state drive (SSD) for the operating system, applications and project files. 1TB is the most common capacity for Solidworks workstations. A smaller 500GB is fine if your projects are moderately sized and the workstation is utilized for basic function work purposes. A larger 2TB is recommended if your projects are very large and you will you will use the workstation for a variety of professional applications.

If your projects are very complex, are running multiple applications as the same time, and you want to maximize performance, we recommend two SSDs:

  1. Primary Drive: NVMe SSD for the operating system and applications
  2. Secondary Drive: NVMe SSD for active projects; a dedicated drive will offer the aboluste maximum performance

For long term storage, backup, or infrequently accessed files, we recommend a 1TB to 4TB SATA SSD. If you require larger storage, you can also go with a 2TB to 18TB hard drive.

NVMe SSD performs at ~2500MB/s
SATA SSD performs at ~500MB/s
SATA Hard Drive performs at ~250MB/s

Memory

The amount of RAM needed depends on how complex your assemblies are and how many projects you have opened at the same time. More RAM can improve performance opening and saving files, rebuilding assemblies, and rotating models. However, massive amounts of RAM doesn't always scale.

If your assemblies are 500MB to 1GB, we recommend 32GB RAM. It's most common and best place to start.

If your assemblies are 1GB to 3GB, we recommend 64GB is recommended. Especially, if you're running large simulations/renders or multiple applications at the same time.


Configuration Recommendations

HP Z4 G4 Workstation

For massive assemblies and rendering

  • Intel Xeon W-2295 (3.0 GHz base frequency, 18 cores)
  • 128GB (4x 32GB) of 2933MHz DDR4 ECC Memory
  • 2TB NVMe M.2 Solid-State Drive
  • NVIDIA Quadro RTX A5000 24GB

HP Z4 G4 Workstation

For very large assemblies

  • Intel Xeon W-2245 (3.9 GHz base frequency, 8 cores)
  • 64GB (4x 16GB) of 2933MHz DDR4 ECC Memory
  • 1TB NVMe M.2 Solid-State Drive
  • NVIDIA Quadro RTX A4000 16GB

HP Z4 G4 Workstation

Most popular HP Z4 / Minimal rendering / #1 Seller

  • Intel Xeon W-2235 (3.8 GHz base frequency, 6 cores)
  • 32GB (4x 8GB) of 2933MHz DDR4 ECC Memory
  • 1TB NVMe M.2 Solid-State Drive
  • NVIDIA Quadro RTX A2000 12GB

HP Z2 G5 Tower Workstation

For very large assemblies

  • Intel Core i9-10900K (10 cores, 3.7GHz base, 5.3GHz turbo)
  • 64GB (4x 16GB) of 2933MHz DDR4 Memory
  • 1TB NVMe M.2 Solid-State Drive
  • NVIDIA Quadro RTX A2000 12GB

HP Z2 G5 Tower Workstation

Most popular HP Z2 / Minimal rendering / #1 Seller

  • Intel Core i7-10700K (8 cores, 3.8GHz base, 5.1GHz turbo)
  • 32GB (2x 16GB) of 2933MHz DDR4 Memory
  • 1TB NVMe M.2 Solid-State Drive
  • NVIDIA Quadro RTX A2000 6GB

HP Z2 G5 Mini Workstation

Excellent performance, yet smallest footprint

  • Intel Core i7-10700K (8 cores, 3.8GHz base, 5.1GHz turbo)
  • 32GB (2x 16GB) of 2933MHz DDR4 Memory
  • 512GB NVMe M.2 Solid-State Drive
  • NVIDIA Quadro T1000 4GB Graphics
  • Wi-Fi 6E (802.11ax); Dual-Band (2.4 & 5 GHz) & BT 5.0

Condition

New: Purchased new from a HP authorized distributor. Never used. Ships in original manufacturer packaging.

Refurbished: Pulled from corporate environment in working condition. Tested upon arrival at our location and also after customization. Cosmetically grade A or B. Overall in good condition, but could have light scratches / scuffs. Ships in double-wall brown box with durable packaging material.