Maya can make use of a high core count, but speed (GHz) is more important. Additional cores are great for rendering, and single core performance is more important for tasks like modelling, applying textures, lighting and movement paths.
Keep in mind that every workflow is unique, and you may be using other software than requires higher core counts.
Maya can use a lot of RAM for certain processes. Animation and rendering are particularly RAM hungry, and memory is therefore a very important consideration.
You should also factor in other software you may be using in order to optimize your system for your personal workflow. The amount of memory you will need also depends on how many programs you will have open at any given time alongside Maya, how large the files are that you will be working with, as well as the complexity of your scenes.
A good starting point in deciding how much RAM you should go for would be to check your current usage via Windows Task Manager.
A more powerful GPU will produce higher frame rates in the viewport. This means that you’ll have a smoother experience working in Maya with a stronger graphics card.
There is a point of diminishing returns, and a mid-range card would be optimal for most users.
If you are using a plugin rendering solution like Arnold, this would benefit from a more powerful GPU.
There is also no need or benefit going for a “workstation” GPU, like Nvidia’s “Quadro” and AMD’s “Pro” cards.
In the past, computers were held back by slow mechanical hard drives. Solid State drives should be used for the operating system and frequently accessed programs and files. Mechanical drives should only be used for extremely large files that are not used very often. Having everything stored on SSDs means you’ll be able to copy, move, open and save files quickly and PC and program start times will be reduced.
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