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    • October 24, 2018 8:49 PM EDT
      • Elverta, CA
         
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      Computer hardware requirements

      How much of a computer (laptop) do I really need to operate a 3D printer?

      I know I need a 64 bit operating system.  Not doing anything extremely complicated, but you never know (the slippery slope).

      The slicing program looks to be a resource hog. 

      Any help with specs would be appreciated.

       

       

    • October 24, 2018 9:42 PM EDT
      • Charlottesville, Virginia
         
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      Well, that depends. Are you going to design your own things?  If so, you are going to need a bit of power, nothing crazy but a solid machine with plenty of ram.  If you are just going to print stuff from thingiverse and other 3d sites, the power is not so important. 

       

      Basically, you design or download everything on the computer, run it through the slicer and then spit out a final file.  The printer takes that file and does it's thing.  My printer is not even hooked to a computer, I just copy a file to an SD card and plug that into the printer, set it up and say go. I've let it print all night a couple of times.

       

      I just got this one a couple of weeks ago, I've been printing stuff I downloaded from thingiverse.com.  I'm quite happy with it so far.

      Comgrow-Ender-3X-Creality

       

      Quick video of it in action:

      https://youtu.be/N1lA-AUExj0

       

      I'll try some of my own designs at some point but I'm not there yet.

       

       

    • October 25, 2018 3:01 AM EDT
      • Denver, Colorado
         
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         I don't know much, but I think you might try to get a computer with a lot of ram; if you get one with only four or so, buy the ram cards DDR3 which cost like thirty bucks and stick 'em in the ram slots for more firepower. I'm sure someone will chime in with more knowledge than I have, but I know you can never have enough ram!

       

       

       

      ____________________________________

    • October 25, 2018 3:36 AM EDT
      • Elverta, CA
         
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      Thanks for the reply Martin. 

      Currently looking at a mobile workstation.  Is this overkill?  I don't want to buy more than I need.  Could use the money for filament.

      CPU Intel® Xeon® E-2176M

      CPU Speed 2.7 - 4.4GHz

      Chipset CM246

      GPU NVIDIA Quadro® P2000

      Video Memory  4GB DDR5

      Memory 32 GB (16G*2) ECC DDR4 2133MHz

       

      HDD Capacity 512GB SSD(PCIE Gen3x4)

       

       

      I want to learn cad, and make some things that I can actually use.

      The CR-10S is the printer I would like to have.

      Downloaded a lot of files from thingiverse.com to print when I have a printer.

      I have a 32 bit program (FREE) "Design Spark Mechanical".  So far so good.  They have a 64 bit version also.

    • October 25, 2018 3:48 AM EDT
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      Thanks for the reply John.

      I used to build my own computers.  The current one (built a long time ago) can run Windows 10, but is 32 bit. 

      With cars there is no substitute for cubic inches.  Probably not true now.

      With computers its ram.

      Who was it that said we would never need anymore than 64k of ram?  I think he owns a software company near Seattle, WA.

    • October 25, 2018 8:03 AM EDT
      • Chaco, Paraguay
         
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      when i started out (2 or 3 years ago) i had to change from win-x to win-8.

      (win-x ran on the 64 system, but the DaVinci software did not cooperate with it)

       

      we filled the (64) with as much ram as it could swallow. (that was 3.5 GB then...)

      if i remember well, we dedicated additional 5,300 and some of virtual memory and put a NVIDIA 210 with another 1.9GB

       

      slicing and editing of files went well.

      scanning worked - powerwise - as well.

       

      the problems, that i had lay elsewhere. (scanner did not take small detailes, printer did print at .2 - both not good enough to make 1:32 figures.)

      This post was edited by Korm Kormsen at October 25, 2018 9:48 PM EDT
      ____________________________________

       

      My Chaosplace ->  

    • October 25, 2018 10:33 AM EDT
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      Thanks for the reply Korm.

      As soon as I buy a laptop they will release a new 3D printer that requires me to buy another more powerful laptop.

      I think I just answered my own question!

       

       

    • October 25, 2018 10:40 AM EDT
      • West Glocester, Rhode Island
         
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      Jim,

      You don't need a Computer to "operate" the CR-10S as you can copy a gcode file to an sd card and insert it in the slot in the printer.  However, most files downloaded from thingiverse are .stl so must be run through a slicer.  You can download cura (free) from https://ultimaker.com/en/products/ultimaker-cura-software and open an stl file you download from Thingiverse and save the gcode.  https://ultimaker.com/en/resources/16516-preparing-a-print-file  You may find out your current machine has adequate horsepower for this. 

      As far as CAD design is concerned, you do not need to wait for a printer to try that out either.  Download Sketchup Make (free) from https://www.sketchup.com/download/make and play!

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    • October 25, 2018 12:24 PM EDT
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      Thanks for the reply Dan.

      I understand the process of 3D printing, thingaverse, SD cards. etc.

      Sketchup is for a 64bit system.  I have downloaded Cura, but it is also 64bit.  My current computer is 32bit.

      I was looking for feedback on what hardware would be enough to do some CAD work, and still not be out dated in a few months.

    • October 25, 2018 1:01 PM EDT
      • West Glocester, Rhode Island
         
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      Jim Harris said:

      Thanks for the reply Dan.

      I understand the process of 3D printing, thingaverse, SD cards. etc.

      Sketchup is for a 64bit system.  I have downloaded Cura, but it is also 64bit.  My current computer is 32bit.

      I was looking for feedback on what hardware would be enough to do some CAD work, and still not be out dated in a few months.

      Seems I missed Martin's post when reading through the replies.  Is your current machine up gradable to Win10 64bit?

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    • October 25, 2018 2:17 PM EDT
      • Carlsbad, CA
         
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      I actually prefer the traditional Intel processors over the Xeon's... I use Xeon's in servers, but workstations I would go with the 8th gen i7... same 6 cores, but tends to be more compatible and better tested on windows... remember the updates to Windows server move much more slowly.

       

      Video is ok, you are not gaming, fast enough, and I have had good experience with Quadro and Nvidia.

       

      But it's not just all about ram, more ram is not faster, once you have enough... I have a hard time using over 8 gigs....

       

      The hyperthreading and 64 bit os is your speed of "crunching"... that will make the most difference for your CAD and printer...

       

      Greg

      This post was edited by Greg Elmassian at October 25, 2018 10:03 PM EDT
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    • October 25, 2018 7:24 PM EDT
      • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
         
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      Jim Harris said:

      Thanks for the reply Dan.

      I understand the process of 3D printing, thingaverse, SD cards. etc.

      Sketchup is for a 64bit system.  I have downloaded Cura, but it is also 64bit.  My current computer is 32bit.

      I was looking for feedback on what hardware would be enough to do some CAD work, and still not be out dated in a few months.

      Jim, but that is not going to happen. When you purchase a computer, The next better model is already built and soon to be shipped, the next next better model is in manufacture, and the next next next better one is going through its final design stages. The point is, if you can get something that works well and does exactly what you want it to do, who cares if there are better machines on the market?

      ____________________________________

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    • October 25, 2018 7:55 PM EDT
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      Jim Harris said:

      Any help with specs would be appreciated.

       

       

      It's the final sentence of the "Original Posters" thread that makes me wonder if it's a top secret code ? Mr. Harris has not told us what he is printing or did I miss that part? Perhaps he already has all the specs he needs to print what he needs or maybe not? Is he printing a door or steam locomotive? Heaven forbid he might be printing an Amtrak Superliner!

      Does't the size of the print affect memory ?

    • October 25, 2018 8:12 PM EDT
      • Elverta, CA
         
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      Jim,

       

      You don't really need a monster computer to run 3D printers and or CAD programs. In fact the requirements for same are quite mundane IMO.  I use several versions of AutoCad (current versions and older) on multiple computers and also have experience with a 3DS SLA 3D printer and a Universal Laser. l have run all with older Dell desktops with Pentium processors and 4gB RAM without issue. For years beginning 1985 I assembled my own PC's, somewhere around 2006 I grew out of that and have been a Dell customer ever since. I tend to buy as much computer as I deem affordable and or bang for the buck and find said computers work for many-many years for me. I generally allocate older equipment to CNC machines, 3D Printers and the Laser.  

       

      Link below is for 2018 AutoCAd requirements.

      https://knowledge.autodesk.com/support/autocad/learn-explore/caas/sfdcarticles/sfdcarticles/System-requirements-for-AutoCAD-2018.html

       

      Michael

       

    • October 25, 2018 10:07 PM EDT
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      Yes, but those are minimum requirements, notice the "or faster" parts.

      Let me send you a step file that will kill your computer Michael, it is a metal box about 9 x 6, not super complex...

      It kills my 5th generation i7.... your pentium might explode...

       

      Greg

      ____________________________________

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    • October 25, 2018 10:24 PM EDT
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      Thanks for the replies everyone.

       

      Dan: Yes it could, but I already told SWMBO that I had to have a new laptop, so lets not spoil it for me.

      Greg: Thanks.  That will bring the price down quite a bit.  I might cut the ram in half also.

      David: Isn't it human nature to want the biggest, baddest, fastest whatever in the world?  I used to work for a computer manufacturer.  I get the "next" thing.

      Rooster: Nothing top secret, but if I told you I would have to kill my computer.

      Michael: Good to know.  This will save me some money.  I can use it to buy filament and 3D printer upgrades. 

    • October 25, 2018 10:29 PM EDT
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      Greg,

       

      I gave the Pentium away a last year. Just saying it worked.... Sounds like your box might have stretched its leg's.

       

      Send the file, I'll set what my Dell can do! What CAD program did you crunch it with?

       

      Michael

    • October 26, 2018 12:17 AM EDT
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      We have 3 groups all making designs, one is solidworks, the other 2 I don't know... had to beat them senseless to standardize on step files... one was using step, another DXF, another IGES.... what a mess..

       

      I could send the file, but you probably know how a complex file can bring almost any computer to it's knees, as I said my 5th gen mobile i7 is not happy, takes almost a minute to load up...

       

      Went shopping for an 8th gen laptop, now the i7 is not longer dual core but quad core... built a new home machine with a 6 core 8th gen i5, not too bad, but I can tell the difference with no hyperthreading.

       

      If you are curious about load speeds, send me your email address, file is about 11 megs... greg

      ____________________________________

      Be sure­ to visit ­my site, l­ots of tec­hnical tip­s and modi­fications,­ and you c­an search ­for topics­ and key w­ords.


      ­Click HERE for Greg­'s web sit­e
      PLEASE NOT­E: Please do NOT use private messaging, i­f you have­ a questio­n, feel fr­ee to emai­l me priva­tely, u­se regular­ email onl­y: greg@el­massian.co­m

    • October 26, 2018 7:32 AM EDT
      • West Glocester, Rhode Island
         
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      Jim, if you are set on getting a laptop, you may want to pickup a second (much larger) monitor.  I've designed on laptops and find the panning/zooming required to be extremely arduous.

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    • October 26, 2018 10:37 AM EDT
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      Dan, I hear you  on the larger screen.  The laptop I'm looking at has an HDMI port, so it should simplify connecting to a large screen. 

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