Zbrush is one of the most innovative 3D modelling packages on the market today. 3D modelling software has had a tendency to be technical with significant learning curves. Zbrush threw conventional thinking about 3D modelling out of the window and instead attempted to merge the natural artistic discipline of sculpting with cutting-edge computer software.
The end result is a tool that’s quickly become the industry standard for character and creature modelling for the video game and film industries. In the past, sculptors would have created character and creature models in clay, which would then be scanned into a high-resolution digital form.
Zbrush cuts out the middleman and lets artists sculpt what essentially amounts to digital clay. It goes beyond this by offering tools and workflows that would be impossible with physical sculpting. Artists can also paint their models in Zbrush and export optimized low-polygon versions of it for use in 3D engines such as Unreal.
As you can imagine, Zbrush can demand a hefty workstation, depending on what you need it to do. So let’s have a look at the hardware requirements for this amazing software package.
Zbrush will run on a very humble computer indeed. You can simply download the trial version of the software and test it on any computer to see how it performs. For those just getting started, trying to learn the ins and out of the software, that can be done on almost anything.
However, you’ll quickly run into performance issues as your models start to scale and consume millions and millions of polygons. A modern 8-core CPU from Intel or AMD should serve you well. An i7, for example should suffice but a Xeon-class CPU is worth stretching for if you want to favor stability and reliability.
You might be surprised to know that Zbrush isn’t particularly heavy on the GPU, using the CPU for almost all of the heavy lifting. So a mid-range GPU would be more than enough. Entry-level Quadro GPUs or mid-range cards like the GTX 1660 should handle everything Zbrush throws at it with ease. Zbrush is a CPU-based application, so you could also simply rely on an integrated graphics processor if the computer in question will only be used for Zbrush and other CPU-based applications.
Zbrush is very RAM heavy. The absolute minimum amount of RAM needed to work with multi-million polygon models is 8GB, but we strongly recommend going with at least 32GB of RAM since you’ll almost certainly need that much in the medium term. 16GB is acceptable for now, but RAM is relatively cheap and a key part of Zbrush performance.
This is another crucial component for Zbrush. The application makes heavy use of secondary storage as a scratch disk. We recommend using a dedicated NVME SSD for Zbrush and its scratch disk, or at least leaving 100GB open on the system NVME SSD.
Operating systems supported by Zbrush:
Windows and macOS
LIST OF COMPATIBLE WORKSTATIONS