Unreal Engine 5 is the most recent edition of Unreal Engine. With this new edition, the makers of this program have brought a new breathtaking lighting engine alongside a dynamic geometry detail shifting technology. Although Unreal Engine 5 is said to generally work fine with machines that can adequately run Unreal Engine 4, it is essential to note that there are new features like the new Nanite or Lumen of Unreal Engine 5 that require higher GPU power.
Here is a brief description of the various technical requirements.
As you noticed, the technical requirements for running Unreal Engine 5 are divided into the recommended hardware, minimum software requirements, and the ideal graphics card drivers. Let's deep dive into each of them.
The most important factor needed for Unreal Engine development is a good CPU. This is because the CPU is responsible for bearing most of the load for the processing work during the development stage. This heavy work ranges from the compilation of shaders to the compilation of the code and these processes are renowned for their slowness. This is why we recommend having a CPU with as many cores. A CPU with lots of cores will efficiently break up these processes, and quick single and multi-core performance is at the forefront of anything you want to do with Unreal Engine 5. This quick single and multi-core performance starts from 3GHz upwards.
Also, there is a limit to the number of cores you can add, typically because there is a noticeable sharp drop in single-core performance as the number of cores on a CPU is increased. The ideal number between multi-core and single-core performance is in the 16-core range. CPUs from Intel or AMD that have more than 6 cores/12 threads.
However, most experts have advised adding more than 8 cores for anyone planning on getting serious with Unreal Engine. For Intel, you can go with the Intel Core i5-12600K and above. Likewise, for AMD, you can go with the Ryzen 5 5600X and above.
For the RAM, it is an easy decision to make. You need at least 16 GBs because anything less than that will be quickly exhausted by your browser, OS, and everything that might be running. In terms of cost, the price difference between 8 GBs and 16 GBs isn't that much so it should be an easy decision to make. But if you are as enthusiastic about Unreal Engine 5, then you should upgrade to 32 GBs which is just a bit higher in price than 16 GBs. If you do go for the 32 GBs, your problems with memory will be settled and you will be able to work without a hitch.
Although the CPU is the most important factor in making Unreal work, the GPU is also vital. For the GPU, you don't need anything super expensive. Usually, if your GPU can run whatever you create with Unreal Engine, then the GPU should be able to create it.
The GPU you'll need for Unreal Engine 5 will typically depend on your workload. For the RTX 3070 8GB, it is efficient enough for most indie workflows and it is a great value for money. For the RTX 3090 24GB, it is perfect for game development, ideal for architectural visualization and you can use it for VR content development. Also, for the RTX A6000 48GB, you can use this for virtual production, video walls, and multi-system workflows. This means that a mid-range GPU will be enough if you're only interested in creating experiences without high-quality lighting, large textures, a lot of polygons, or many flashy effects. However, if you want to create hyper-realistic experiences, you'll workload will require a more powerful GPU.
The minimum software requirements for Unreal Engine 5 are subdivided into two; requirements for running the engine and requirements for editing the engine.
For Running the engine, the minimum operating system requirement is Windows 10. Also, the DirectX Runtime recommended is DirectX End-User Runtimes (June 2010).
For developing the engine, you need to install the requirements for running the engine, alongside Visual Studio 2019 v16.11.5 or later (recommended) or Visual Studio 2022. Again, for iOS development, You should install iTunes 12 or higher.
The Unreal Engine 5 has a prerequisite installer that installs all your hardware needs to run the engine and editor, including various Visual C++ redistributables and DirectX components. When Unreal Engine 5 is installed through the Epic Games Launcher, the prerequisites are automatically installed on your hardware. Although, there are situations where you may need to run the installer yourself if you're building Unreal Engine from the source or if you have to load your computer with all the Unreal Engine prerequisites for a particular purpose.
To render using Unreal Engine 5, your device will need different requirements from the minimum specifications. These different features include
Lumen Global Illumination provides diffuse indirect lighting. For example, if light bounces off a surface and mimics the color of that surface, then reflects the newly colored light on other surfaces around. This effect of reflecting one color of light from one surface to other surfaces is known as color bleed. For this feature, the Software Ray Tracing needed is Video cards using DirectX 11 with support for Shader Model 5. Also, for the Hardware Ray Tracing, the system requirements are Windows 10 with DirectX 12 support and Video cards must be AMD RX-6000 series and higher, or NVIDIA RTX-2000 series and higher.
Unreal Engine 5 has a virtualized geometry system that uses a rendering technology with a new internal mesh format to render pixel scale detail. This virtualized geometry system also renders high object counts and only does work on the detail that can be perceived. That intelligent virtualized geometry system is known as Nanite. For this feature, the requirements needed are all newer versions of Windows 10 (it has to be newer than version 1909.1350) and Windows 11. Also, the operating system must have support for DirectX 12 Agility SDK. Another requirement is that you must have the latest graphics drivers.
Virtual Shadow Maps or VSMs is a recent shadow mapping method used to give consistent, high-resolution shadowing that is compatible with film-quality assets. It is also used to deliver high-resolution shadowing to large, dynamically lit open worlds using Unreal Engine 5's Lumen Global Illumination and Reflections, Nanite Virtualized Geometry, and World Partition features. For the Virtual Shadow Maps feature, you need the same requirements as with the Nanite Virtualized Geometry.
Temporal Super Resolution or TSR is the ability to convert video between frame rates. It is a primary functionality in new-age video processing systems. TSR runs on all video cards that support Shader Model 5. Although, there are performance implications with a limit of 8UAVs per shader.
Flaneer provides everything you need to run Unreal Engine 5. From power, up to 4 GPUs and 256 cores. In technical setup, Flaneer offers a 2 TB drive, up to 64 GB in RAM. For the GPU, you can choose between the Nvidia Tesla T4. and the Nvidia A10g. Flaneer is a good benchmark for Game studios, Animation studios and Engineering.
The Titan computers are ideal for Unreal Engine 5 and some of them are the Titan X170-M, an Intel 12th Gen Core i7 Series 14 Cores Mobile Workstation Laptop. Also, there is the Titan W161 which is ideal for CAD modeling.
It could be difficult to find a computer that perfectly fits your projects and so it is advisable to self-build your ideal benchmark computer. To do this, you need to tailor your needs according to your work.
This is more tasking so your ideal CPU is an AMD Threadripper 3990X 64-COre and your RAM size should be at least 256GB DDR4. You should have an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3080 10GB and your primary and project drives should be 500GB Samsung 980 Pro NVMe and 2TB Samsung 980 Pro NVMe respectively.
The AMD Ryzen 9 5950X 16-Core should be your choice of CPU if you're into the other side of development like animation and modeling. Also, you need 64GB DDR4 RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 24GB video card. Your primary drive should be 500GB Samsung 980 Pro NVMe while your project drive should be a 2TB Samsung 860 EVO SATA SSD.
The ideal PC for this will require a large case with extra room for multiple add-in cards like the capture card or the Intel Dual 10 Gigabit ethernet card. FOr the build, you need an AMD Ryzen 9 5950X 16-Core CPU, a 64Gb DDR4 RAM, and an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 24GB video card. You also need a primary 500GB Samsung 980 Pro NVMe drive and a 2TB Samsung 980 Pro NVMe for your projects.
The required benchmark for this build is CPU, AMD Ryzen 9 5950X 16-Core and RAM, 64GB DDR4. For the video card, you either use NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090 24GB or NVIDIA RTX A6000 48GB. Also, your primary drive can be 500GB Samsung 980 Pro NVMe, while projects can be stored on a 2TB Samsung 860 EVO SATA SSD.
Unreal Engine is used by many people and companies in diverse ways. Whether you’re a game / animation studio based remotely, an engineering agency with a poor internet connection, or you're a freelancer, it's not enough to only get the parts, especially if what you need is highly dependent on what you are doing. So, here are a few real-life recommendations on the kind of computer or sophistication of your machine. This is to ensure you don't encounter problems with performance when working.
Unreal Engine was first made for games and it has consistently made progress in improving the gaming experience.
However, beyond video games, Unreal Engine is being increasingly used for applications as well. Interactive informational content, machine turntables, engaging exhibitions, and others that need smooth performance and high-fidelity graphics have used Unreal Engine as the choice framework for their development and creation. Due to its ease of use, comprehensive tutorial availability, and professional user interface creation tools, Unreal Engine comes first as a good framework for creating applications and games. Using Unreal Engine 5 for apps requires less hardware sophistication than games or others. This is because apps are typically small and require much less processing power. The hardware requirements for developing games and apps through Unreal Engine 5 is a good CPU with at least 6 cores and a clock higher than 3 GHz, to ensure smooth software operations and speedy compilation. Also, you need a good and compatible GPU and RAM size of at least 16 GBs.
Some games look and feel like movies and for most of those games, the experience is a result of Unreal Engine. However, today, Unreal Engine has ventured into many different directions like animation, film, and VFX. SHows like the Mandalorian have been known to use Unreal Engine for its jaw-dropping effects. Unreal Engine's groundbreaking extendable nature and its real-time scene rendering abilities have positioned it to be every filmmaker's favorite tool. If you're interested in using Unreal Engine for these purposes, then your choice for hardware requirements may seem inverted. In this scenario, your GPU should be the single most important focus considering the visual effects run on the GPU. This makes the speedy compiling advantages of the CPU less useful.
This is typically familiar to freelancers who have dabbled into 3D content creation and are familiar with programs like 3D render engines. 3D render engines are programs that transform your creations into real life and they are very important to a 3D creation workflow. Without these programs, 3D creations would have no lighting, color, shading, or anything else. As mentioned above, Unreal Engine is a render engine as well although it is more complex than the average render engine. Unreal Engine has a lot more functionality than a render engine, but it can also be used for just rendering images and images. Unreal Engine is increasingly becoming the most sought-after render engine because it offers both real-time and true path-traced rendering. For the hardware requirements, you need to invest more in your GPU, and less in your CPU.
There is no single best computer to run Unreal Engine 5 but with a combination of specifications and modifications, you can build a great PC capable of pushing the limits with Unreal Engine 5. The build will generally depend on the complexity of your project. However, it is recommended to go for a desktop when building your ideal PC for Unreal Engine 5. With a desktop, you can upgrade it when the need arises.
There is another great option to run Unreal Engine 5, and that is Flaneer. Flaneer is a young startup, founded for 3D animators, 3D artists and engineers using CAO/CAD software. Flaneer offers a solution to the rapid obsolescence of computers, mainly due to growing computing power requirements from software such as Adobe, Maya, Unreal, etc.
With Flaneer, you can save on your IT budget, have the flexibility to work from home, and save time thanks to relevant computing power. Click here to sign up on Flaneer.