I am in the market for a new PC and want to run both Trainerroad and Zwift simultaneously on the same PC. Any suggestions on specs?
TR is pretty low intensity. With Zwift, it is very graphically intense, so the best video card you can get is where to spend the money (vs processor or RAM).
Zwift Minimum Device Requirements
Trainer Road Minimum System Requirements
Neither are very CPU/GPU intensive so if this is going to be dedicated to a trainer setup, there is no need for high end hardware. In its current form, Zwift is about 3 generations behind PC gaming in terms of poly count, shaders and whatnot. Obviously, if you are going to use it for other PC games or video editing the recommendations below do not apply.
This is what I built about 4 or so years ago:
Acer Revo RL80-UR22 (I’m sure there are better all-in-one small form factor PCs now, but you get the idea)
TCL 40" 1080p TV
Atlantic VG Spyder TV/Gaming Hub <— this is a nice stand to hold your stuff in front of the trainer
I use RemoteMouse on the iphone as a touchpad and keyboard
I disagree greatly on the Zwift side. If you want to run anything other than minimal graphic settings, it is best to buy a mid to high level graphics card.
That won’t matter or be a need for everyone. But if you plan to output to a larger screen at 1080 or 4k, you will need a decent GPU.
You can review actual test results via this link see actual test results related to full specs:
I currently run TrainerRoad on 6 year old bargain windows laptop with no trouble. Actually, over the years by TR computer has always been whatever i had replaced with a new computer for use elsewhere. TR might not run on just anything but you’ll have to put some effort in to find a working computer that can’t run it.
Zwift is a different animal more akin to a video game. It runs better and definitely looks better on something that can handle graphics. I run Zwift on that same 6 year old laptop and it works, but it struggles at times and does not look as pretty as it would on a gaming computer with a dedicated graphics card.
While I completely agree that to get the maximum fps at highest settings having a decent CPU/GPU combo is a requirement, I think this misses the point with Zwift.
The Zwift graphics engine is very basic. No complex shaders, lighting, environmental effects or other eye candy. Heck, the renderer only has to draw the same linear path around the course. Compared to a current release like the latest Crysis or Farcry iterations, Zwift looks like minecraft.
None of this is meant as a knock against Zwift. They admit that their main demographic at rollout was business laptops with integrated graphics. This was a good move on their part because I doubt most users were going to build a high-end gaming PC and hook it up to an 85" screen just to train. For the vast majority of users 30 fps at 1080p is perfectly adequate to be immersed in the simulation. That is easily achieved on a modest system.
TrainerRoad = no PC required. Just run the app on your phone, it’s all you need really (unless you want to create your own workouts).
Agree with others re: better graphics card and more processing power for Zwift. It burnt out my last laptop which was only a few years old with an i7 processor so no slouch.
Hence no more Zwift for me as I replaced my laptop with a Chromebook and haven’t looked back (TR doesn’t run on Chromebooks BTW).
This is all very helpful. Last night I ran Zwift on my current PC and TR on my iPad. Have a second Ant+ dongle arriving today to run both on my PC, simultaneously. Will see how that goes and then decide whether to upgrade my PC.