Blender Render Rig!

Blender Render Intro.pngI have to admit, this is unabashedly late, but I felt compelled to do it at some point.  After a heavy season of learning the ins-and-outs of not only Blender 3d, but GIMP, and then subsequently Mandlebulber 3d, I felt it was essential I aquire a rig that could handle the demand put on it.  I requested the advice of a fine fellow WordPress blogger ( who gave me an excellent customized Amazon cart recommendation (holding to a specifically set budget I might add).  After working through the summer, I finally was able to make the purchase.  Here are the specs:

Motherboard ASUS Micro ATX AM3+ Motherboard

Case Cooler Master Silencio 352 Silent Minit Tower

CPU AMD FX-8320 FX-Series 8-Core Black Edition Processor

RAM Kingston HyperX Fury 16GB Kit (2x8GB) 1866MHz DRR3

GPU EVGA Geforce GTX 970 4GB SSC Gaming ACX 2.0+

Internal Storage WD Red 2TB NAS Hard Drive – 5400 RPM Class SATA 6Gb/s 64MB Cache 3.5 inch

Transcend 256GB MLC SATA III 6Gb/s 2.5″ Solid State Drive 370

Power Supply EVGA 500 W1, 80+ WHITE 500W

After reciving it, I put it all together with minor confusion on the GPU power input (still reletively new to the new “powered GPU’s”).  Once it was up and running, I proceed to install the Operating Systems on the SSD.  I had done some research, and found Ubuntu Studio to be the most effective “creativity” OS for my purposes.  In the end, it’s basically Xubuntu with all of the art, photography, audio, and 3d software bundled into the distro.  I liked that it uses the XFCE low impact window manager though.

I then proceeded to install the GRUB boot loader and partition out a Windows space!  Each OS got about 180gb for the base OS, and then I dedicated a Terabyte of storage to each OS.  The purpose for Windows was basically gaming with Direct X 12.  The Linux gaming space is definitely growing, clearly being pushed ahead by a now native Steam client!  Games I have tried (in 1920×1080) are:

Crysis 1 and 2

Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare

Unreal Tournament (UE4 Beta)

Peragon (UE4 Beta)

Metro 2033

Quake 4 Remastered (Mod)

Everything I have thrown at this machine runs flawlessly!  I havent tried 4k resolutions yet (I don’t have display that can do it, but my research suggested the GPU can handle it), or VR.  But all is well on the gaming front!

As for the main event, Blender 3d modeling with CUDA GPU Rendering took more time to set up in Ubuntu Studio (it worked out of box in Windows 10!), but now works in both operating systems.  I have heard rumors that rendering was somewhere around 132% faster in Linux then in Windows (based on this particular GPU).  I have found CUDA rendering makes my work proformance acceptly OS independant.  Here are some pictures of the rig and the workspace:


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