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Using a GTX 560 Ti as a CAD card?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Looking at the spec and price difference between gaming and "professional" cards, it seems mad to pay twice as much for half the processing power. For example on paper the Quadro 2000 and GTX 560 Ti are both 1GB cards, but the Quadro has half the memory bitrate, half the processors and supports a lower version of OpenGL.
Is there any way of getting the GTX 560 Ti to perform well in CAD apps such as SolidWorks? I'm assuming the gaming cards are limited by their drivers and registry entries etc. If this was the case and you were to "hack" the drivers etc to get the GTX 560 Ti to work as a CAD card, what would the legalities be? I'm curious because the CAD guy in my department needs a new card.

GTX 560 Ti £172.27
Quadro 2000 £366.20
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post #2 of 9
http://www.solidworks.com/includes/swworld/presentations_/proceedings_display.cfm?sid=28667
post #3 of 9
You can't hack your card's drivers to get the same performance and support of a Quadro equivalent. You'll have to settle for 1/8th of the FP64 performance if you get a GeForce card. The difference is indeed the BIOS and drivers. With the Fermi architecture, Quadro cards also get ECC support.
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post #4 of 9
You will have to use Quadro drivers with modded inf, as I'm doing now (using latest 285.58).
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post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Well he's specced a FireGL V5700 at the moment. I was just investigating the probability of using a gaming card for CAD applications because it seems daft to get ripped off for what it looks like is an inferior card.

How would you go about modding Quadro drivers to work with a GTX 560 Ti adridu59?
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post #6 of 9
Quadros get sick premium customer support, special drivers and Bios that are optimised for the jobs of CADing. A 560ti is decent for CADing, in fact I use my GTX 580 for Sketchup, Autocad, 3DsMax, and also for some heavy gaming.

A Quadro only does what it is made to do : render; A Geforce does what it is made to do as well : everything.

I would not hack it personally, If you are doing jobs that require that much of heavy rendering, get the proper Quadro card to begin with and save all the trouble.
    
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post #7 of 9
Hi, I would take a look at the Autodesk forums for suitible cards.
, there is also a huge disscusion over there about this very subject.

Now I don't work in CAD much but i make my living with 3DS max/Maya and in those applications gaming cards are inferior and a very very frustrating experiance (yes i tried the modded drivers 3 fps in viewport does not count as working in my book)

This could be completly different in CAD but i really do suggest you research a lot before making that decission. We are using 6 series quaddros now and the difference is incredible- the only problem is if you plan on gaming on them the performance is not great.<
understatement

Quaddros are expensive for a reason (the warranty is one) but they are proffesional cards which are amazing at rendering and are worth the premium if you want an enjoyable experiance and certainly worth every penny if you use your PC for CAD/3D work then the choice is a no brainer. If your a casual user try with a gaming card but be prepared for an extremely frustrating experiance.

*Edit I have just looked over at Area.com and no one has managed to get geforce drivers working in any of the 2012 software from Autodesk so i would be intrested to see where these drivers are coming from as Nvidia or the software authors cant get them to work. hacking the inf so they install really does not count) "Working" quaddros drivers on geforce does not exist. period.

Some of the links explaining this issue

http://forums.nvidia.com/index.php?showtopic=173749
http://area.autodesk.com/forum/autodesk-3ds-max/installation---hardware---os/asus-geforce-gtx-480-problems-in-3ds-max-2011
http://forums.autodesk.com/t5/AutoCAD-2011/NVIDIA-GeForce-GTX-460-470-480/td-p/2740033

There are many of these threads with people trying to do it this way and at the end of all these the answer is always the same --- it does'nt work

Rergards

Further edit from reading the threads over on Autodesk it would appear Nvidia know of the issue and are unwilling to either support or look into it- simply quoting improved performance can be found by using one of thier quaddro products which are aimed at the 3d design market.
Edited by Ghilly - 10/24/11 at 4:34am
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post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by adridu59;15431472 
You will have to use Quadro drivers with modded inf, as I'm doing now (using latest 285.58).

The latest quaddro drivers are 276.14 ???? do you mean you have geforce installed on a Quaddro?
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post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies I was just interested to see if there was a cheaper workaround than paying through the nose for the CAD card. Guess we'll have to stick with the original plan and go with the ATI FireGL V5700.
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