NVIDIA RTX™ GPU Power in the Toy Box
Designer Alessandro Pasotti leverages a Dell Precision workstation and NVIDIA RTX™ technology to boost his performance by as much as 20%.
May 13, 2022
Alessandro Pasotti is an industrial designer and CATIA Champion based in Milan, Italy. He works predominantly in plastics and in toy design, and has benefited from the interactive speed and rendering advantages enabled by NVIDIA RTX™ technology. He currently uses a Dell Precision 3650 workstation equipped with an NVIDIA RTX™ A5000 GPU.
Please describe your design background and the type of work your company does.
Pasotti: We are a Milan-based industrial design studio, and I specialize in industrial design and 3D modeling. I have a particular skill set with a technical, mechanical and creative background combined with product life cycle and production technology knowledge. This led me to work predominantly in the plastics field including specific focus on the molding and prototyping processes.
I work with companies that, in addition to considering the creative and emotional aspect of design, need to develop products with a comprehensive view of the design and manufacturing process, including the assessment of manufacturing feasibility, production, safety and ergonomics.
The world of plastic and its technology has always been part of my life, and the path to becoming a product/toy designer was in my DNA and runs in the family. My father was a master designer using injection molding technology, and I grew up with many of his projects all around my home. This definitely influenced me and my path to become an industrial designer.
I have wonderful memories of that period. This was in the late 1980s and my father had one of the first 2D CAD systems to design his projects. He taught me how to use it, and I got very passionate about it. I remember designing my first simple 2D bike at the age of 8.
I am a designer with experience in developing products for a range of different sectors, including toys, but also technical goods, furniture, sporting equipment, housewares and others.
To better design toy products I use the size parameters to better consider the size of the children users, and divide them in three categories:
- Role play toys as an imitation of real products such as kitchens, trolleys, scooters etc. They are in 1:1 scale so definitely are big products.
- Creative and built toys. These are not 1:1 scale and they can be hand-picked and carried around easily.
- Micro Toys, with very small proportions, considering their total volume inside a package of 4-5 cm3.
Combining creativity with highly technical expertise and state-of-the-art engineering processes, I have established myself as an important and reliable supplier to high-profile companies, globally and locally.
In addition to CATIA, are you using additional tools/modules from Dassault/3DEXPERIENCE?
Pasotti:I usually use the more creative apps like Sketch Tracer, Natural Sketch, Natural Shape, Imagine & Shape, Freestyle Shape, or Live Rendering combined with the more technical apps like Generative Shape Design, Part Design, Assembly Design, Human Design, Drafting, Mechanical System Design.
In addition, I use the Collaborative Lifecycle app and other ENOVIA apps to manage my projects, and their related data, to realize the full potential of the platform.
How long have you been using the Dell Precision 3650 workstation?
Pasotti:I have used the Dell Precision 3650 since the end of the 2021, but I first started to use Dell Precision workstations in 2007, with my first Precision T390, then the T3600 in 2012 and the T3620 in 2017, each of them with a different powerful configuration.
With this new Dell Precision 3650 I am at the fourth generation of Dell workstations in my studio. The feel is excellent, it is sturdy, silent, and very fast in my product design workflow with CATIA. Also the form factor is improved, and I like this compact proportion.
What are some of the key design challenges that you face within the markets you serve?
Pasotti:There are many challenges that I face on a daily basis in a project. I think the most important and complex challenge of my work as a designer is to combine the creative side with the technical-constructive aspects oriented to mass production, to preserve and transmit the high emotional brand value of the product that will be created.
Another design challenge that I face is the high number of changes and iterations during the design process. It should not be surprising that my clients are also very focused on product safety. Over the years the attention to safety factors, costs and sustainability have become fundamental, so the rule has become “safety first”. The regulatory burden is huge, and has an impact on another fundamental aspect to consider, the ergonomics of a product.
How are you able to address those challenges with CATIA and the Dell Precision 3650?
Pasotti:I save time because I am able to make changes and revisions without destroying the geometries of the product or starting from scratch. This reduces data loss and errors, and this is a benefit for me, but also for my customers. We need to use less plastic, reduce and optimize the weight and overall volume of the toys or the product in general, so that less materials are used.
All of this process is possible thanks to the great integration of the 3DEXPERIENCE environment and its apps but not only for this reason. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform combined with an optimized method of designing the 3D model allow me to create an alchemy to take design to a higher level, and offer an innovative, transversal and strategic response for industrial design in terms of flexibility, quality, and speed in all design phases, from thought to production through the most important human factor.
What role do the workstation and NVIDIA RTX™ GPU play in improving your workflow and performance? Can you give specific examples? What types of improvements have you experienced?
Pasotti:The NVIDIA RTX™ A5000 with its 24GB of VRAM plays a key role in my design process. In particular the GPU provides all the necessary speed of visualization and model updates during changes that I need, even in high quality rendering settings.
I am able to immediately visualize the changes and the improvements in CATIA Live Rendering mode thanks to the calculation ability of the RTX™ GPU and the Dell Precision in general. This allows me to create a better design, to make better decisions, 20% faster than the previous way of working. It is a real boost for my job.
Are there particular features in CATIA/3DEXPERIENCE that have been valuable in your work, i.e., generative design, etc.?
Pasotti:One of the most valuable aspect for my way of working, is the perfect integration between the apps and the possibility to have one unique work environment. This makes the 3DExperience incredibly powerful and versatile at every design level.
One of my useful and valuable apps is Imagine & Shape (IMA). It is the synthesis of polygonal modeling at the highest level. With it I can create any shape I can imagine. It is perfect for creating complex geometries in minutes, for a simple proportion evaluation or directly, and combined with all the other apps to create a ready production model.
Are you considering any hardware upgrades in the near term, i.e., a more powerful GPU, etc.?
Pasotti:Thanks to this new Dell Precision 3650 and NVIDIA RTX™ A5000 in the nearterm (i.e., in the next two to three years) I have all the power necessary to perform my business in the best possible way and be able to fully satisfy the needs of my customers.
I believe there is always a need to be ready to upgrade according to market demands. If I need to be more efficient down the road I will certainly consider upgrading the workstation or graphics card.