What is the best hardware to run my CAD program/software?


What is the best hardware to run my CAD program/software?


CAD International is in the business of developing and selling a wide variety of different CAD programs and we are often asked to make recommendations for suitable hardware. It seems there are several questions that need to be asked before being able to say what is the best, because what is good for someone using one program could be pretty useless for someone on a different product or with a different need. the same is also true for the software itself. Not all CAD is the same – far from it. 

The most important variables in ‘modern’ computers (and in simple terms) are:-

  1. The CPU Central Processing Unit (the ‘brain’ that processes MOST of the billions of mathematical tasks)
  2. The RAM Random Access Memory (that holds the file data and program and operating system in memory whilst it is being used)
  3. The GPU Graphics Processing Unit (that looks after the visual information that eventually makes its way to your screen)
  4. The HDD Hard Disk Drive (that stores your files) SSD Solid State Drive (memory stores in a chip rather than on a turning disc)
  5. The VDU Visual Display Unit (Screen) (that is the direct visual interface between you and the machine and your CAD drawings or model)
  6. The ID Input Devices (that determine how you will interface with your model in a physical manipulation sense)
  7. The O/S Operating System (that determines what actual software you will be able to use on the machine)
  8. The Bit Rate (that determines how much information is able to travel between devices on your machine and also what operating system and file handling methods can be deployed) 

The most important variables in relation to software and how that affects what machine/hardware to buy are:-

  1. Is the software designed to run on a Mac or PC or Linux/Unix O/S? and with tablets, Android or iOS etc
  2. Is the software a 3D modeller with 2D drafting or a 3D-only or 2D-only system?
  3. Does the software support graphics standards like OpenGL?
  4. Does the software use LIST drivers for diplay?
  5. Does the software support 64Bit or only 32Bit operations?
  6. How does the software manage multitasking?
  7. Does the software use the CPU or GPU for rendering tasks?
  8. Can the software open and work with multiple files and or can it have multiple instances of the program open at the same time?
  9. How does the software handles background tasks?.
  10. Can you put the software onto more than one machine without having to purchase multiple licenses.

 Once we have most of these questions answered we are able to make a better considered recommendation. 

Other questions that arise are:-

  • mobility
  • styling
  • other uses for the machine
  • compatibilty with others


So if you are unsure contact us with as much information as you can and we can at least steer you in the right direction. We don’t sell hardware nor do we promote any brand, so we are impartial. Our aim in this is to have you experience CAD in the best possible way.