I'm a graphic design hobbyist and I'm learning to use Maya right now, so having a good workstation card is very important. I use the ATI FireGL V7350 with 1GB of VRAM. This amount of memory may sound like overkill, but if anyone who has ever tried graphic design, they know that depending on the CPU for rendering is a headache especially when the number of polygons reaches into the millions and that graphics RAM actually is used well. These programs are heavily dependant of vertex shaders, so those gaming cards are not ideal. In fact, the workstation card despite clocked slower than gaming cards, the workstation cards run Maya [and the like] much faster.
The card is not very good for gaming, as it is an OpenGL card (all workstation cards are OpenGL).
My laptop a Lenovo T60p has a FireGL V5200. Its not ask fast as the V7350 and it has only 256 MB, but likewise to its desktop workstation sibling, it runs Maya [and the like] a lot faster than other cards.
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