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Old Mar 19, 2013, 10:52 AM   #1
barefeats
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Benchmarks done for Radeon HD 7950 for Mac

REVIEW: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 versus other Mac Pro GPUs

http://barefeats.com/gpu7950.html

Picked seven of the most interesting tests for this first 'salvo.' A follow-up article will feature other apps and games.

And we plan an article on Friday to include two 'crazy fast Windows only' GPUs that run just fine under OS X 10.8.3.
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Old Mar 19, 2013, 03:16 PM   #2
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Cheers!

Two questions:

1) How did you get the "Valley" benchmark tool to run? It doesn't work on my 5870.

2) Any idea if you can test the 7950 in a Mac Pro '08 (3.1 model)?

TNX!!

EDIT: duh...
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The AMD GPUs required a patch to run Heaven and Valley. AMD compatible versions of those apps will soon be available to all users.
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 12:18 PM   #3
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double post
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 08:48 PM   #4
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id liked to see some of these tests with properly modded Nvidias 570 and 580 and 600 gpus.

thanks Barefeats
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Old Mar 20, 2013, 10:27 PM   #5
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those should be enroute

on a "ha, ha" note, the Sapphire Manual claims that a 4,1 Mac Pro is needed.....

but shows install pix taken on a 3,1

Especially poor idea as the place to plug in the power cables has moved....and I still don't have 10.7.5 working
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 02:57 AM   #6
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Thanks for the tests guys, you didn't waste time!

I would love to see some app and games comparisons with equivalent Nvidia cards, such as the GTX660Ti or GTX670.
They also work like a charm on Mac Pro and would be interesting to know how they stand.

All the best!
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 03:29 AM   #7
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I am particularly interested in a "same settings" comparison to Skyrim at 1440p vs an Apple 5870.

Mind you, without anywhere to buy it in the UK yet...
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 03:39 AM   #8
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So on average, roughly about the same performance, give or take a few fps, as the iMac's mobile GTX680MX GPU. Not bad I suppose.
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 07:17 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barefeats View Post
REVIEW: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 versus other Mac Pro GPUs

http://barefeats.com/gpu7950.html

Picked seven of the most interesting tests for this first 'salvo.' A follow-up article will feature other apps and games.

And we plan an article on Friday to include two 'crazy fast Windows only' GPUs that run just fine under OS X 10.8.3.
Thanks for the review Rob!
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 07:30 AM   #10
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Ordered yesterday and on its way already! Delivery next week woohooo!
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Old Mar 21, 2013, 10:49 AM   #11
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Thanks for the benchmarks!

Yeah too bad my iMac [with the GTX 680MX] is almost as fast (if not sometimes faster) than the 7950.

Of course I ordered one and it's set to deliver today.
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 01:36 PM   #12
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Part Two of 7950 Benchmarks

PART DEUX: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 versus other Mac Pro GPUs
http://www.barefeats.com/gpu7950b.html

Includes StarCraft II, Diablo III, Team Fortress 2, FCPX, Premiere Pro, Photoshop, and LuxMark.
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 01:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ekwipt View Post
id liked to see some of these tests with properly modded Nvidias 570 and 580 and 600 gpus.

thanks Barefeats
That's coming on Monday.

----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielCoffey View Post
I am particularly interested in a "same settings" comparison to Skyrim at 1440p vs an Apple 5870.

Mind you, without anywhere to buy it in the UK yet...
If there is a recorded game session I can playback plus a way to capture frame rates, will be glad to add that to the test suite.
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 02:04 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barefeats View Post
PART DEUX: Sapphire Radeon HD 7950 versus other Mac Pro GPUs
http://www.barefeats.com/gpu7950b.html

Includes StarCraft II, Diablo III, Team Fortress 2, FCPX, Premiere Pro, Photoshop, and LuxMark.
Is it not true that all Blizzard games are Nvidia-skewed? Could explain why the GTX 680MX stomps the 7950 on SC2 and Diablo 3...
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 02:34 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by odinsride View Post
Is it not true that all Blizzard games are Nvidia-skewed? Could explain why the GTX 680MX stomps the 7950 on SC2 and Diablo 3...
Traditionally, NVidias have performed better on games, and ATI cards on pro software.

CUDA muddies the water a bit with that, but when you exclude CUDA, that's what I've tend to have seen.
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 03:13 PM   #16
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I appreciate the review, thanks.

As you said, the 7950 is a sognificant upgrade for any MP user still on cards other than the 5870 and still welcome, even then.

I'll look forward to the next comparison. It might be good to try a few tests in Bootcamp to see how much the PCI 1.0.vs 2.0 issue affects non-EFI cards.
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 04:37 PM   #17
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Just look at the Steam TF2 bench with the 5870 testing the same as the 7950. It should be significant by almost 50% over the 5870. Either Saphire/ Apple drivers or OS X is at fault for most of these benchmarks. Most gamers use Windows on their Mac's. There will be a better power understanding benching in Windows as they don't have Apples driver impairment.
This is what you should be seeing if things were done correctly.
http://www.anandtech.com/bench/Product/511?vs=550
"The NVIDIA GPUs are strongest in CUDA accelerated apps like Premiere Pro --" C'mon Rob? You might want to explain why for the people, no?
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Old Mar 22, 2013, 10:04 PM   #18
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Thanks Barefeats looking forward to the reviews!
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Old Mar 23, 2013, 06:50 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanielCoffey View Post
I appreciate the review, thanks.

As you said, the 7950 is a sognificant upgrade for any MP user still on cards other than the 5870 and still welcome, even then.

I'll look forward to the next comparison. It might be good to try a few tests in Bootcamp to see how much the PCI 1.0.vs 2.0 issue affects non-EFI cards.
Good idea. System Profiler gives an error when I click to see the lane speed of an unflashed 7970. But based on some of the results, I suspect it might br running as 1.0.

Even if that isn't the case, there are situations where the Westmere isn't feeding the GPU fast enough. Come quickly oh 2013 Mac Pro!

----------

Quote:
"The NVIDIA GPUs are strongest in CUDA accelerated apps like Premiere Pro --" C'mon Rob? You might want to explain why for the people, no?
My example wasn't convincing but the CUDA advantage is even more pronounced in apps like After Effects doing Ray Trace 3D and in OctaneRender as you will see in PART TROIS.
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 01:32 PM   #20
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Posted Part Trois or what I call "shootout with the sharks":

http://barefeats.com/gpu7950c.html

Includes a mixture of high-end AMD and Nvidia GPUs running a bunch of different apps
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 01:49 PM   #21
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Imo the 690 was only using one of its two 670 gpus.

Its a single card sli inplementation, i dont think that works in osx.

Kind of a wasted test imo.
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 02:10 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barefeats View Post
Posted Part Trois or what I call "shootout with the sharks":

http://barefeats.com/gpu7950c.html

Includes a mixture of high-end AMD and Nvidia GPUs running a bunch of different apps
Thank you for testing X-Plane 10!!

It's getting such a difficult choice: blow some new life in my ageing 2008 Mac pro with this 7950, and wait for a supposedly new Mac Pro, or get the newest and fattest iMac (with the GTX 680 MX) N O W !!
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 02:29 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lewdvig View Post
Imo the 690 was only using one of its two 670 gpus.

Its a single card sli inplementation, i dont think that works in osx.

Kind of a wasted test imo.
You're right. I'm hoping to add a 680 classified to that page in the next few days. Any other GPUs you want to see?
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 03:00 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by barefeats View Post
You're right. I'm hoping to add a 680 classified to that page in the next few days. Any other GPUs you want to see?
  • Unflashed PC AMD 7950
  • Unflashed PC AMD 7870
  • NVidia GTX 670
  • NVidia GTX 660Ti

And some comments regarding noise and/or heat, please.
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Old Mar 25, 2013, 03:32 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by cal6n View Post
And some comments regarding noise and/or heat, please.
I second that request. I don't really like my MP to sound like a jet engine, which seems to be an occasional problem with non-Apple cards.
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