Fusion 360 is a cloud-based program used for 3D CAD and CAM, as well as analysis of the creation of goods. With easy collaboration and quick prototyping in mind, this program is a very useful tool. It then makes sense that a specialised computer for Fusion 360 would be a great investment.
Autodesk’s recommended system specifications for this program are quite minimal. This includes a CPU with 6 cores running at 3.0GHz, 8GB RAM, and a GPU with 4GB VRAM. Our personal recommendations are much higher. This is especially true if you don’t plan on purely using this computer for Fusion 360.
In this article, we’ll be talking about the components you need to build the best workstation PC for Autodesk Fusion 360.
Why choose us?
Parts like CPU cooler, Power Supply Unit, and chassis are often glossed over when putting together a system like this. Surprisingly, these parts have a massive effect on the lifespan and performance optimisation of the CPU, GPU and RAM. We only use parts that guarantee excellent cooling, airflow, and power delivery.
We’ve also got a lot of experience in putting these systems together, and our cable management is flawless. This not only means dust will be a lot less of an issue, but it will be much easier to work with when you eventually need an upgrade. This will only happen several years down the line, of course. Not to mention our cases just look fantastic.
Each Modena Computers Workstation is tailored to the personal needs of the user, but the features below would make for a great starting point for your Fusion 360 computer.
3D Modeling & Design
CPU – Frequency
This program prioritizes speed over core count. Because of this, we’d recommend an AMD Ryzen 5000 series CPU.
These processors boost up to high frequencies, and they also have great IPC. This means that they’re able to outperform Intel CPUs with otherwise similar specs.
CPU – Core Count
While it is true that Fusion is generally a single-threaded application, there are some workflows which benefit from more cores. Rendering is one of these areas, along with view related commands like zoom, pan and rotate. This is also true for a lot of modelling commands, like most geometry modelling and freeform commands.
Autodesk recommends a 4-core CPU with a frequency of 3.0GHz, but we don’t feel that’s enough. The Ryzens we mentioned above also have great core counts, and we usually stick to Ryzen 5 to Ryzen 9. These CPUs range from 6 cores to 16 cores, which would be a great fit in a computer for Fusion.
Similar programs like SolidWorks benefit from the features of a Nvidia Quadro card, but this kind of graphics card is not necessary for Fusion. In fact, you would probably get much higher performance from a similarly priced Nvidia GeForce GPU, which is why we prefer sticking to those. Autodesk recommends a 4GB graphics card, so the GTX1650 would be a great choice. This card also lets you connect to multiple monitors or monitors with a higher resolution and framerate.
Depending on what else you plan on using your workstation for, you might want to think about a higher performance graphics card, like an RTX series card.
Fusion can use a lot of RAM if you are working with large, complex assemblies. We therefore recommend at least 16GB RAM as a starting point, but if 32GB RAM fits in your budget it would be the best choice. 32GB RAM will also leave enough headroom to run other applications, as well as making the computer a lot more future proof.
Storage technology has come a long way over the past decade. Solid State Drives are known to be much faster than mechanical hard drives, but they’re also seen as pretty expensive.
It was pretty common to install the OS on a 120GB SSD, and everything else on a 1TB HDD, so that you could at least start up your PC super quickly.
Recently it’s become more viable to just use a larger SSD, from around 500GB to 1TB, and this is exactly our approach with our PCs. Having everything stored on SSDs means you’ll be able to save and load programs, and also transfer data, at incredible speeds. The SSDs we use are M.2 form factor and use the NVMe protocol, which means they take up no additional space in your case, and are even faster than standard 2.5” SATA drives.
These drives save a lot of time, and that means the PC will pay itself off a lot faster. You also still have the option of adding in some HDDs if you need to.
As we said before, each Modena Computers Vulcan Workstation is custom built to the workflow and budget requirements of its user. It’s important to consider other programs you may want to use with this workstation.
During our consultation process, you can let us know exactly which programs you want to use with your machine, and we’ll be happy to help you understand what you need.
Keep in mind that opting for higher performance right out of the gate offers much greater value than getting exactly what you need right now. A higher performance PC won’t need downtime to upgrade any time soon, and will also allow you to complete more work in less time. It could pay itself off a lot sooner than a more affordable option.