By now Autodesk’s launch of its new 2014 products, including Autodesk® Inventor® 2014 applications, should have wide exposure with engineers and designers. Inventor 2014 comes in a number of editions, the top-end Inventor Professional, Inventor, and Inventor LT. This article concentrates on Inventor Professional and Inventor although many observations about visualization can be extended to Inventor LT.
The Inventor 2014 applications have many new features documented at Autodesk’s Wikihelp support website, http://wikihelp.autodesk.com/Inventor/enu/2014 . Amongst those are graphics improvements that take advantage of multiple Intel® Xeon® cores. Using Microsoft’s DirectX 11, Inventor capitalizes on the support for multi-threading of graphics from the core of an application through the DirectX 11 libraries and to the multi-thread capable graphics card. This enables a jump in performance for variously complex assemblies under a wide range of lighting and environmental conditions. Additionally, the Inventor graphics engine consolidates small objects in the assembly that have similar appearance into groups to be sent to the graphics engine. This consolidation with these types of repetitions speeds up visualization by two-and-one-half to three times.
Inventor Professional has another set of features to consider when selecting a workstation for your work—the built in dynamic simulation and stress analysis capabilities that take advantage of multi-threading. If these features are a major focus of your work, it is important to have four cores or greater that are available with current Intel Xeon processors.
HP has many desktop and mobile workstations that support your Inventor needs. The HP Z420 Workstation can be a great solution for engineers who work with complex Inventor assemblies or use Autodesk Product Design Suite Premium and Ultimate editions. The HP Z420 Workstation supports a wide range of Intel Xeon options to meet the needs of demanding users and also options for great price/performance considerations. The system also supports a wide range of Nvidia Quadro Kepler generation graphics cards, as well as AMD FirePro V3900 and FirePro W7000 graphics cards. Today 16GB to 32GB of memory is recommended for Inventor with large assemblies with 30,000 + components.
If you’re an Inventor user with more modest assemblies, the HP Z220 Workstation provides a number of Intel Xeon E3 and Intel® Core™ i7 processor options. The Nvidia Quadro K600, K2000, and K4000 graphics cards are supported along with the AMD FirePro V3900 and FirePro W7000 graphics cards. 8GB to 16GB of memory is good for medium and small assemblies and Inventor.
For more configuration options, please see http://www.hp.com/workstationfinder. Additional information on the HP Z workstations and HP Elite Mobile workstations can be found at http://www.hp.com/zworkstations.
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