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Hardware/Software Limits?!?!?


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#1 Bentm's Games   Members   -  Reputation: 88

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 02:58 PM

Hey community, I'm new to this forum and u may have seen my post about my crappy childish style. Now, as you may have realised, I am an ASPIRING game artist. At this point I need some good advice. I really like drawing, and I like digitally refining those awesome drawings I draw. But, to refine those awesome drawings, I must have a scanner, camera, or graphics tablet. And to refine those efficiently, I should have good software. (Im also a computer nerd just to let u know, but not too much programing) And also a good system. For my system, it has a p4, with 2gb ram. For software im using macromedia fireworks 2004. Yes I said macromedia, Yes I said 2004. And while using this software to try and do digital art without my own base drawing, I notice considerable lag. Anyone have any advice on what to do, where to attain software or hardware, or anything? And I also heard linux managed memory better, any1 know graphicss tablet and graphics software for linux, and whhere to get a low end machine to run linux Ubuntu on?

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#2 thok   Members   -  Reputation: 684

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 03:07 PM

Linux isn't going to help you, especially on a _low-end_ machine. If you want to run modern software, you need a modern machine.

#3 Pointer2APointer   Members   -  Reputation: 283

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 03:44 PM

You can use one of the Wacom Graphics Tablet on Ubuntu(some versions are more buggy, or difficult than others to set up, but yeah).

And you can install Ubuntu on pretty much any machine, even cheap ones(but is that really what you want?).

And the above poster is quite incorrect. Linux machines may not be priority competitors in the market like Windows or Mac, but they can, for the most part, get you what needs to be done, done. You can run many printers, scanners, camera devices, etc. on Linux perfectly fine like on Windows and Mac(though the difficulty levels will be much higher in a variety of cases).

Also, Linux is free. Any decent, lower-end purchased computer system, with or without a pre-installed operating system and with a Linux distro like Ubuntu, can get you to do what you're requesting.

You also don't need a "modern machine" to run "modern software" exactly.

As for the memory management, Windows, Mac, and Linux-based OSes all do it differently. There is plenty of room for debate.
Yes, this is red text.

#4 Bentm's Games   Members   -  Reputation: 88

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Posted 01 October 2012 - 05:52 PM

You also don't need a "modern machine" to run "modern software" exactly.

Do u think it would be ok to get an imac 2006 (2o or 24) max it out to 3gb ram, and run adobe illustrator w/ a wacom graphics tablet (preferably the splash) because I love character drawing, but i cant do that with available resources (except on paper of course)

#5 6677   Members   -  Reputation: 1058

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 10:11 AM

max it out to 3gb ram

Thats hardly maxing it out on a machine that starts from 2gb (last time I checked) and runs through to at least 16 (might be 32).

If your worried about cost then throw apple hardware out the window. Its hideously expensive compared to its windows counterpart and if your going to be using adobe then there is no difference between using it on windows or mac so you might aswell save money.

Now lets say you want to go down the free software route. Linux Mint is my distro of choice for ease of use. Its based off of ubuntu however ubuntu only includes entirely open source software in the basic install, mint also comes with software that although not open source is free such as flash and java, some new linux users often have trouble installing these themselves so generally mint is a better choice in my opinion. As its so closely linked to ubuntu anything that runs on ubuntu in theory should run on mint aswell. Inkscape and GIMP are both very popular free graphics tools, inkscape works on vector graphics (like adobe illustrator) and GIMP is for raster graphics (like adobe photoshop, and also MS paint although thats uber basic of course). I can't find anything definitive on using the wacom splash with linux however a friend of mine I believe mentioned doing some art in linux using a tablet, he hasn't replied to my email yet asking him which tablet he used etc.

Inkscape and GIMP seem to use less resources than the adobe counterparts on my dads mac, but not noticeably so. Linux however although does not manage memory much better than windows or mac it does use less memory than windows, having never run linux on apple hardware or bothered to find out I can't tell you what the difference would be. Installing a version of linux with a lightweight desktop (XFCE for instance) would reduce resource usage further freeing up more resources for your graphics tools, however your rig does look to be low spec so personally I would just run with getting a new one. Whether you build one and install linux to save money or go with windows anyway is entirely your choice, you never specified a budget.

And alternative to a graphics tablet is to draw on paper and then either scan or photograph it to your computer. Scanning would give a clearer output. My dad does freelance graphics and scanned freehand drawings into his mac. He then runs them through this tool: http://vectormagic.com/home which attempts to convert a raster image (JPG, BMP etc) into a vector graphics format usable in adobe illustrator or inkscape. He prefers illustrator, if you can afford it then it is indeed the better software but you might be able to get by on inkscape.

#6 Bentm's Games   Members   -  Reputation: 88

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 03:53 PM

Thats hardly maxing it out on a machine that starts from 2gb (last time I checked) and runs through to at least 16 (might be 32).

I mean the 2006 one, and they do max out at 3gb. (the ones youre thinking of are the 2010-1012 wich max out at 32gb) and, looking into it, getting a core 2 duo machine wiht 3gb ram costs about the same. The reason I wanna use mac is cuz i just love it. And some stuff isnt available that i would like to use, like zbrush. And software cost is not an issue for me, if ya know what i mean. 3gb on the imac 2006 would be fine for me (not really, but for all intents and purposes, i need to make the best of what I have) And with the scanner ordeal, do you know if those "nano scanners" advertised work for scanning as good as a normal scanner, cuz i noticed they are much cheaper. And I was planning on installing Ubuntu on my old iBook anyways.

#7 Kaptein   Prime Members   -  Reputation: 2061

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Posted 02 October 2012 - 04:45 PM

zbrush can work on windows and linux too, i completely agree on the sentiment that macs are overpriced and is mostly for people who prefer to spend less time dealing with a few issues to get things working, than saving money
quite frankly i think money doesnt grow on trees, but i have more than enough time to figure out how to use ie. ubuntu, which in all fairness is very simple to begin with :)
it seems like you want and will be using mac no matter what :) it kind of voids your own thread :P

#8 Bentm's Games   Members   -  Reputation: 88

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Posted 03 October 2012 - 05:58 AM

it seems like you want and will be using mac no matter what it kind of voids your own thread

No, not exactly. I just didnt know zbrush was aviable for linux/able to run. Yes I do love mac, but just the zbrush thing, because i hoped to be using it. Well, u solved my prob then, off to look for a core 2 duo!

ps. thanks for telling me that.

#9 6677   Members   -  Reputation: 1058

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 10:09 AM

Actually one of my mates has a previous gen imac with 12gb of ram installed..... And my school has a room of previous gen imacs ALL running 6gb.
EDIT: seems previous gen is not 2006 model as I thought. You are indeed correct although it seems like a false economy to buy such a machine. That limit is also software enforced not hardware enforced, the chipset apparently supports 8.

My research is still showing about a 30% cost increase on the older apple hardware compared to a new windows machine. Not as bad as when I got my laptop I guess, I paid £379 and the equivalent ibook (macbook didn't exist yet) was £1200.

Edited by 6677, 04 October 2012 - 10:11 AM.


#10 Bentm's Games   Members   -  Reputation: 88

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Posted 04 October 2012 - 02:57 PM

My research is still showing about a 30% cost increase on the older apple hardware compared to a new windows machine. Not as bad as when I got my laptop I guess, I paid £379 and the equivalent ibook

They will always cost more, because of their scarcity. (not buyers, but model scarcity, like how tjeir are only 6 macs out atm) I did some research, and settled on a 3.3ghz tri-core phenom 2 cpu by amd. Added in with case, memory, and other expected costs, It fits my budget. (my dad will be paying for some, and so will my bro, were gonna share, because we wanna do music production too). I will be using the machine for game design using 3dcoat and zbrush, also ardour DAW for ubuntu. Yes, Im gonna install ubuntu, ass windows home costs $130

#11 6677   Members   -  Reputation: 1058

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Posted 05 October 2012 - 12:46 PM

Heads up, NEVER skimp on a power supply. Cheap ones are just liable to give either far less power than they claim and just cause your PC to shut down or just deliver a huge power surge that fries your computer. The extra money for a branded power supply with an 80+ certification is worth it and HIGHLY advisable.

And no, apple hardware isn't expensive because of scarcity, infact price per unit to manufacture is infact far lower than many other companies hit but then thats probably because they produce an abnormal amount from a single plant rather than smaller amounts from several plants and use what is borderline slavery (even children). They can afford to sell them cheaper. Its just designer gear so they sell it for more (some people say they look nicer, thats not worth a 400% price markup IMO).

You didn't mention a GPU or hard disk btw. I assume you didn't leave them out. If you ask your school you may be able to get a discount on buying a windows 7 CD.

I also recommend linux mint over ubunut, it has a far better list of default installed software. Ubunut can't play DVD's for example as the codecs aren't installed, they are in mint. Mint is based on ubuntu so software for ubuntu specifically will work in mint.

Edited by 6677, 05 October 2012 - 12:49 PM.


#12 Bentm's Games   Members   -  Reputation: 88

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Posted 18 October 2012 - 02:58 PM

Heads up, NEVER skimp on a power supply. Cheap ones are just liable to give either far less power than they claim and just cause your PC to shut down or just deliver a huge power surge that fries your computer. The extra money for a branded power supply with an 80+ certification is worth it and HIGHLY advisable.

And no, apple hardware isn't expensive because of scarcity, infact price per unit to manufacture is infact far lower than many other companies hit but then thats probably because they produce an abnormal amount from a single plant rather than smaller amounts from several plants and use what is borderline slavery (even children). They can afford to sell them cheaper. Its just designer gear so they sell it for more (some people say they look nicer, thats not worth a 400% price markup IMO).

You didn't mention a GPU or hard disk btw. I assume you didn't leave them out. If you ask your school you may be able to get a discount on buying a windows 7 CD.

I also recommend linux mint over ubunut, it has a far better list of default installed software. Ubunut can't play DVD's for example as the codecs aren't installed, they are in mint. Mint is based on ubuntu so software for ubuntu specifically will work in mint.

Thanks for that tidbit about power supplies, yes i remembered gpu and hdd. And about ubuntu, I really havent used a dvd in a while, and if i need to, I can always get the codecs and install it.




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