9 Hardware Choices For The Remote VFX Artist

Nerdeo has decided to make an independent review of what sort of hardware the remote VFX artist should have at home. We’ve tried to keep the price down to £5K for your complete workstation and accessories. Let’s get down to business!


BenQ 27 inch, 4K UHD Monitor, IPS Panel, sRGB and Rec. 709 PD2700Q. It’s at a mid-range price but provides the much needed resolution and 10bit depth as well as decent refresh rates without completely breaking the bank.

BenQ PD2700U 4K HDR Monitor for Graphic Design UHD 27 Inch, 100 Percent Rec.709/sRGB, CAD/CAM, Animation, Darkroom Mode – Grey

Screen Calibration:

Datacolor SpyderX Pro (SXP100) or X-Rite i1Display Studio. These are at the cheaper end of monitor calibration but perfectly good for VFX work that most probably will go into grading later! It’s important to have your monitors calibrated so there is less back and forth about colour / luts with clients. Specially if you’re working remotely.

X-Rite i1Display Studio Datacolor SpyderX Pro – Monitor Calibration designed for serious photographers and designers (SXP100)


Either the usual Wacom Intuos Pro digital (PTH660) or Huion INSPIROY Q11K V2 Wireless Graphics Drawing Tablet. Wacom is the industry standard for most studios but many artists are shifting to Huion for the reduced price!

Wacom PTH-660-N Intuos Pro Pen Tablet (Size: M)/Medium Professional Graphic Tablet Including Wacom Pro Pen 2 Stylus with Replacement Tips/Compatible with Windows and Apple, Black

HUION Inspiroy Q11K V2 Wireless Drawing Tablet, Battery-free Stylus with Tilt Function Graphic Tablet Supports Mac Windows Android Ideal for Work from Home & Remote Learning


Logitech MX Master 2S wireless, extremely ergonomic and weighted.

Logitech MX Master 2S Wireless Mouse, Multi-Device, Bluetooth or 2.4GHz Wireless with USB Unifying Receiver, 4000 DPI Any Surface Tracking, 7 Buttons, Fast Rechargeable, Laptop/PC/Mac/iPad OS – Black

Graphics Card:

GEFORCE RTX 2080 Ti is the one you need. If you can afford it, buy 2 (lol). Create beautiful scenes with accurate lighting, shadows, and reflections rendered faster than you thought possible. With dedicated hardware accelerated ray tracing, artists can render in higher quality in less time and create more inspirational art. Decode and Debayer up to 8K RED video in real-time with REDCINE-X PRO. Computational hardware accelerated video processing, eliminating the need to generate time-consuming and low quality proxies, when working with ultra-high resolution RAW video files.

ASUS Dual GeForce RTX 2080 Ti OC Edition 11 GB GDDR6 Graphic Card with High-Performance Cooling for 4K and VR Gaming DUAL-RTX2080TI-O11G


You need 128 Gigs of RAM. We don’t care from where, you just need it! You need either 8 x 16GB or 4 x 32GB. Corsair is always quality.


Our choice is the Intel Core i9 9960X, 16 Core with HT, 3.1GHz, 4.4GHz Turbo. You can get 32 cores with an AMD Threadripper and it will perform well with Nuke and a couple of other programs but if you use ANY adobe product like Photoshop, After Effects, Premiere, etc. you will run into problems. Also, after a lot of benchmarking, 16 cores seems to be the sweet spot for most operating systems and software. There is little to no difference on getting more cores, as most software takes little to no advantage of this. As usual, the hardware progresses faster and the software / operating system plays catch-up.

Intel BX80673I97960X 165 W Core i9 7960X X-Series Processor – Multi-Colour

Hard Drives:

Seagate BarraCuda 2TB internal hard drive 7,200 rpm, which is faster than many of its rivals on the market for a fraction of the price.

Seagate ST2000DM008 Internal Hard Drive – 2 TB – silver

External Hard Drives:

G-Technology 10TB G-DRIVE USB-C (USB 3.1 Gen 1) Desktop External Hard Drive – 0G05678. Grives are always extremely fast and reliable.

G-Technology G-DRIVE 10 TB with USB-C

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