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Choose the right configuration for your BIM software: ArchiCAD, Allplan and Revit

Choose the right configuration for your BIM software: ArchiCAD, Allplan and Revit

Following the discussion BIM-adapted computer / laptop configuration enriched by the feedback from our friends Floris, Antonio and François, we will recap in this article the different parameters for choosing a workstation, classic or portable, we have discovered that it is not necessarily the top of technology which will be the best for our software, sometimes a cheaper mid-range configuration will suffice!

We have chosen to study the needs of the three software: Revit, ArchiCAD and Allplan, the choice of the config depends on your software because each one requires more or less performance than the others.

 

ArchiCAD

Processor : ArchiCAD perfectly supports 'multiprocessing' through the use of multi-core processors, a 4-core processor is ideal, those with 6 and 8 cores are more efficient but their cost is important and we do not necessarily need them.

Memo : ArchiCAD supports 64bits and to take advantage of it you will need at least 8 GB of memory, which is not bad because most of the time we will not use all of it, on the other hand take 16 GB if you use several software simultaneously, the cost of the ram is relatively weak compared to before, do not hesitate to take enough.

Graphic card: the needs for this component are often overestimated, no need to take the last high-end card, the most important is the video memory so take one with at least 1 GB, the drivers are also very important , which makes the difference of dedicated CAD cards from those dedicated to games, Graphisoft recommends taking certified / CAD cards, you can take a mid-range like Nvidia Quadro or ATI Fire Pro.

Storage (hard drive) : ArchiCAD uses the cache system a lot, a lot of reading / writing of data on the hard disk is carried out apart from saving and opening the files, for this an SSD hard disk is required, you can take one at 128 GB as system disk for windows and ArchiCAD, another classic disk will suffice for the storage of your projects.

 

Allplan

Processor : an Intel i5 or i7 is recommended, Allplan can use several cores simultaneously.

Memo : Like ArchiCAD, 8 GB of RAM memory is more than enough for current projects, do not hesitate to take more if necessary since the cost of RAM memory is relatively low.

Graphic card : Nemetschek recommends a graphics card that supports hardware acceleration, a mid-range certified pro / CAD card with 2 GB of video memory.

Storage (hard drive) : An SSD storage for the system disk containing windows and Allplan as well as the rest of your software is ideal, take with a classic disk for the storage of your projects that will be enough!

 

Revit

Processor : Unlike other BIM software, Revit only uses one core of your processor most of the time, no need to rely on the number of cores when making your choice unless you do a lot of 3D rendering, rather take the processor with a maximum of frequency, a recent Intel i7 with 3 GHZ is top!

Memo : to give you an idea of ​​the quantity needed for your projects, it's simple: the size of your .rvt file x 20, without forgetting the linked files! take no less than 16 GB for Revit, and no more than 32.

Graphic card : unlike its two rivals, Revit uses DirectX rather than OpenGL, which is why a latest generation graphics card is not necessarily the most efficient, a mid-range PRO certified / CAD card preferably will be a good one choice, with 2 or even 4 GB of video memory.

Storage (hard drive) : an SSD disk is indisputable :-)

 

I have not deliberately suggested brands or models of workstations, I will let you each give feedback on their experience, if you have or you use a particular model, please share it here.

Good reading

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comments (10)

This comment was made by the moderator on the site

Regarding REVIT concerning the graphics card and according to the English-speaking specialized forums, it seems that professional cards are no longer necessary or even counterproductive given the transition to direct 3D and ...

Regarding REVIT concerning the graphics card and according to the specialized English-speaking forums, it seems that professional cards are no longer necessary or even counterproductive given the transition to direct 3D and the abandonment of OpenGL. Without having done any measured tests, I confirm that a mid-range gamer graphics card (GTX x50 see x60) is very efficient in handling large models (hospitals of several tens of thousands of m²).
In fact, the professional range of nVidia for example using GPUs identical to its general public range, there are really very important disparities. An entry-level pro card (more expensive than a super gamer card) probably won't do.

An important point that few users know: the power of the GPU intervenes only in the instantaneous manipulation of the model: 3D orbit, switching from one view to another. During an image rendering calculation, only the CPU is working.

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Vincent Bleyenheuft
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I confirm Vincent's comment. I am on a laptop with a clevo panel, 16gb of RAM, a 4-core processor (physical) and a gtx 660m graphics card (therefore games tendency). Revit runs better than on my previous "station of ...

I confirm Vincent's comment. I am on a laptop with a clevo panel, 16gb of RAM, a 4-core processor (physical) and a gtx 660m graphics card (therefore games tendency). Revit runs better than on my previous "workstation" with a quadro k1000m (entry level pro). I also confirm that I had the opportunity to work on a relatively large model during my studies (university campus).

Another remark for Revit, it seems to me that year after year the multi-core functions of revit are more and more developed (previously only renderings or almost, but today load or unload memory, open and close projects are multi-core actions). More rare are the users to have only one open software and therefore even if not optimal, the multi-core remains in my opinion an interesting solution. However, as stated earlier, frequency plays an important role. When I run Revit and open a "demo" project, the 8 virtual cores are working but the first one is launched directly in turbo mode.

I confirm the 16gb of RAM and the SSD which helps to alleviate somewhat a "defect" of revit, the size of the files.

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francois denis
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Mohamed KHETTAB admin Author
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thanks for your feedback, what was the average size of the projects that you found smooth on a gamer card? a gamer card can be "hacked" and convert to a pro, it is the same material which has been restricted in two different ways for ...

thanks for your feedback, what was the average size of the projects that you found smooth on a gamer card? a gamer card can be "hacked" and converted into a pro, it is the same material that has been restricted in two different ways to segment the market: gamers and professionals.

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Mohamed KHETTAB
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I confirm for the gamers cards ...
I have a personal mount station with i7 at more than 3.0 GHz, 16GB of RAM, samsung SSD disk and GTX 650 graphics card ...
It works better than the equivalent HP Z66O and Lenovo stations and that for 1200 € ...

I confirm for the gamers cards ...
I have a personal mount station with i7 at more than 3.0 GHz, 16GB of RAM, samsung SSD disk and GTX 650 graphics card ...
It works better than the equivalent HP Z66O and Lenovo stations and that for 1200 €.
For my training, I use a 13 "flip flap VAIO laptop with a 5 GHz i1.6, 8 GB of RAM, SSD disk, and HD Graphics family graphics card ... And it's running !!!
So, let's stop banking for manufacturers who only know how to outbid ... nothing !!

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Alain KAUFFMANN
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Mohamed KHETTAB admin Author
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Thank you Alain,
I plan to buy a laptop in the coming days, I will probably take a good gamer!
intel i7, 16gb ram, 500gb ssd and an M880 graphics card, the brand on the other hand I don't really know ..

Mohamed KHETTAB
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We equip our Revit trainers, with Gaming PCs, and for the management of large model (s) (Revit and IFC) at our customers' premises, the PCs are very efficient !!! no problem. Quadro cards are not necessarily necessary, I would even say ...

We equip our Revit trainers, with Gaming PCs, and for the management of large model (s) (Revit and IFC) at our customers' premises, the PCs are very efficient !!! no problem. Quadro cards are not necessarily necessary, I would even say inefficient if you have VR to do!
IFC files still require RAM, so we recommend 32 GB!

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Comment last edited about 4 years ago by Yves-Laurent MARTIN Yves-Laurent MARTIN
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Hello,
Present in an ESN (SS2I) for pros.

We have architectural clients.
We advise and install a very professional product for which our customers are very satisfied
The Triangle d'Or brand PC (Gironde production)
h ...

Hello,
Present in an ESN (SS2I) for pros.

We have architectural clients.
We advise and install a very professional product for which our customers are very satisfied
The Triangle d'Or brand PC (Gironde production)
http://www.mci-services.com/actualites/quel-ordinateur-faut-il-utiliser-pour-autocad-revit-archicad-et-allplan-logiciels-adaptés

This brand is generally sold only to pros, but do not hesitate to ask us for information.

Have a good day

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Comment last edited about 4 years ago by Samuel B Samuel B
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Thanks for the info @samuel, I didn't know this brand!

Mohamed KHETTAB
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Mohamed KHETTAB admin Author
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Hello, a very complete list of laptops to work on digital models, especially under Revit:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1x-4e6KaPlgfa1MCYkliADHKSnELaij_h0LtP9w4cztI/edit#gid=0

Mohamed KHETTAB
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Thanks Mohamed for the list.
I did not understand very well the notion of score and especially of "value"?

Stephane Sollat
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