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Mac Equivalent to Renderboxx?

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I've been doing a little research in preparation of building a C4D render farm -- it seems those with experience tend to discourage crossing operating systems. Since we work on macs at my studio, I've been looking for a nice solution running OSX... But the made-just-for-rendering systems Renderboxx builds look ideal.

 

Which leads me to my question: is there a Mac equivalent to the Renderboxx any company out there is producing? My guess is no.

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Nope. There's no 3rd party Apple rendernode but 4 Mac Mini's will probably offer slightly more power for 1k less. A hackintosh farm will offer more power for half the money but it's ill advised if you are not tech savvy.

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For the same price as the i7 mac mini, you can build a HT quad core i7 PC tower that will clock in at 4.5Ghz with very very easy over clocking and get you almost twice the performance or the mini. You have to build it yourself but its not that big a deal.

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Crossing platforms isn't such a big problem with rendefarms any more. The problem is (or was) having different CPU types. Now mostly everyone is using INTEL processors so all the calcs are being done to the same level of precision. That said, it's still easier to stick to one platform if you can.

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Crossing platforms isn't such a big problem with rendefarms any more. The problem is (or was) having different CPU types. Now mostly everyone is using INTEL processors so all the calcs are being done to the same level of precision. That said, it's still easier to stick to one platform if you can.

 

We have a cross-CPU render farm, which poses no problems at all. Intel workstations, AMD render farm.

 

BUT, Intel does cinebench higher than AMD per Ghz.

 

 

Building out a few mini / micro ATX AMD boxes with Windows is the most cost-effective solution. Approx $400 per machine if you opt for the latest and greatest AMD procs.

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I use a couple of mac mini's fully tricked out and stacked. $1500 for the pair and they make for great c4d and AE render nodes. Building yourself some windows boxes would definitely be cheaper, but you'd be spending time assembling and maintaining a renderfarm instead of working.

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It takes less than an hour per machine to build, another 2 hours for installs / plugins & whatnot. If you have a bunch, you can image one after installing everything and ghost the rest of the workstations.

 

Maintaining???? Only as much as you would with any platform. I haven't needed to even look at the desktops of those machines in months. I just flip the power switch and a couple of minutes later they appear on the net render list, ready to go. They are set to turn off after 2 hours of inactivity.

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Agreed. I've found Windows render nodes to be basically maintenance free. Maybe one re-boot a month.

 

Using the "Remote Desktop Connection" that's built into Windows makes it easy to get the render nodes desktop to appear on your workstation desktop. Couldn't get much easier.

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What Aromakat says, but only if you have the time and are not afraid to dig in technically. Just buy identical machines and use an image. Autostart clients & use screen share for any maintenance if you go the Hackintosh way.

 

You can buy 8 times the computing power for 1 Renderboxx.

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the cross platform was an issue when macs where power pc's or whatever that was.

 

there was never an issue between intel and AMD.

 

so im guessing if you have arm processors you might run into issues...

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Maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I'd say it is definitely easier if everything is the same OS. We're running windows and Macs with C4D, AE, Nuke and Qube to render and seems like there's always issues across platforms.

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