The high cost of high performance can be intimidating to anyone in the market for a new workstation, especially if you aren’t quite sure what to look for. It’s crucial that you know your money is going toward exactly what benefits your workflow, and nothing more. There’s no need to pay a premium for 18 cores or loads of expensive ECC memory if the task at hand doesn’t demand it. An unoptimized, overpriced system like that is what we in the industry call a “diamond briefcase.” 1 Having the most cores on the block might sound nice, but if maximizing productivity and minimizing cost is the goal, it’s important to understand how to choose a workstation that caters specifically to what you’ll be using it for. Fit the hardware to the software, not vice versa.