Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Jackel, 27 Nov 2002.
Just out of interest, why go for a SGI over a windows box? (Unless of course you just want to cut your teeth on Irix)
I have an Indigo 2 (well its my dads) that I play about with now and again. They are great for graphics, but do not have much software on mine at the moment.
goto ebay. thats where we find all the SGI stuff.
not much sware is made for SGI though
Indigo 2s are very cheap, generally you can get a good 200-250MHz R4400 for around £150-£200, depending on graphics card, disk, etc.
O2s will cost you much more, but a 195MHz R10000 O2 is a rather more powerful proposition than the Indigo 2. Of course, you can find R10k Indigo 2s, but you've less upgrade potential than the O2 (which you could upgrade to around 400MHz R12000 I THINK....you'd have to check with SGI on this).
Might I also suggest looking at Suns? Solaris isn't wildly different to IRIX, and you can get a good Ultra 10 300MHz UltraSPARC II for around £300. Of course, I was reminded the other day how everything is relative, and how slow the Ultra 10 I was using seemed, since I'd previously been on a Dual 750 UltraSPARC III Blade 1000....
Anyways, apart from ebay, you might want to check out www.13w3.com
Aahhh, I see. take it from someone who is qualified to use said software. Get a PC
(unless you really want to learn Irix, in which case still get a PC for the gfx)
ok so you saw a dvd and want to use 3d gfx to do that.
ok well £8k for the top end machine is the least of your worries. how about £8k for a 1 year license for the software itself (maya though i think its more like £6k. 3ds max is £4k and XSI, well err lets not go there)
SGI were the best out there, couple years back doing everything a PC can do now. thats changed and a PC is much better.
I'd say you can now comfortably get into 3D for less than £600.
£600 for the box, which won't rip through 3D software, but can cope with it OK.
Both MAYA and XSI are available as learning editions for free.
I believe the current going rate for MAYA complete (which deceptively is the basic package) is about £4000 and XSI £6000.
It should be noted that ILM use PCs as their render farms. Pixar use Sun Microsystems. Both use SGI to create the content which the renderfarms finally output.
Jackel- I think from what you've said you want to find yourself a 195MHz R10000 Indigo 2 with SolidIMPACT graphics. As for software, you're on your own. Be aware also that both sun and SGI use 13w3 connectors for the monitors, so you will either need a converter or a 13w3 monitor (which are very very very cheap indeed on ebay).
ILM still use SGIs I think mainly because of two things
1.)They can still afford to
2.)They have that much custom code it'd probably be a massive wrench to move to PC boxes.
I think the reasons for Pixar are pretty much the same.
1.)They can afford it
2.)They'll have that much code, why bother making more work for themselves?
However the most popular hardware these days it seems is pentium x systems running Linux. Although an interesting note is that AMD are starting to make a dent in this market.
The main reason why we have the indigo is because my dad works with them for a living. He works for a company called soho 601 in London who creat alot of Graphics for tv ads etc. They have loads of smaller sgi workstations attached to Inferno servers they have in the basement. These things are huge and are crammed with processors. The work is done in stages on the workstations (duh) and then send off to the more powerful inferno for rendering. Due to the increse in pc's graphical power, and speed, they now also use alot of p4 based systems. Seen the mini ads, and the cool Jimi hendrix Audi ad? They did them there
And Jackel, I don't think he will be happy if I gave away his Indigo!
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