My Dell XPS 8700 is seventeen years old. Anyone else would have given up on it, but I nursed it along, and it sufficed until the release of Unreal Engine 5. You see, I need UE5. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to use it effectively, but right now I gotta have it.

Prophetically, the old girl gave me a goodbye wave during the cutover procedure – a disk drive failed to mount. The backup was three weeks old. I did a restart. The drive mounted. I pumped it. Crisis averted.

I assembled the new machine myself, something I haven’t done in twenty years, using a build plan published by SQL essayist Glenn Berry. If not for the plan, I would have been smarter to buy something.

Mr. Berry’s parts shopping was spot-on. There were no unfortunate component selections. But even with the plan, there were head-scratching moments. It wasn’t an easy task. I don’t recommend it for the uninitiated.

I’m using the new machine right now. I have at least forty hours invested in the migration. I’ll be tinkering with it for weeks. I tested UE5 on it last night, and the jury is out on whether this configuration has enough horsepower. At this writing, a 3D artist in Sweden is building a UE5 animation for a book promo. We’ll see.

4 thoughts on “Computerfied

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  1. Are you running Windows 10 or Windows 11? Alder Lake processors that have E-cores generally do better with Windows 11, since it can use Intel Thread Director to assign threads to E cores or P cores based on their performance requirements. I would also make sure you have the latest BIOS version and that you have enabled XMP and resizeable BAR in the BIOS. You also want to make sure you have the latest driver versions, especially the NVIDIA GeForce driver. Let me know how this system works out with UE5!

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      1. Also, RTX3060 and a pair of 980 M2s. The MB didn’t see the SSD’s at first. Then it saw one, then the other. I had to grit my teeth over reseating them, chose not to. I cabled the cooler pump to SYS_FAN6 PUMP, but I can’t tell if the MB knows it’s a pump. The cooler fan went to CPU_OPT. I might not have figured out how to arrange the cooler fans/radiator combo without your photos. The Gigabyte app launcher functioned correctly during an initial, failed OS install. After the successful install, the app refuses to list addons, including the BIOS flasher. Mitigation strategies published on the Internet have not produced a solution. Dang.


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