Please tell me this G5 isn't really this slow...

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by jrapczak, Sep 20, 2003.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    #1
    Just got a new 1.8 ghz single proc G5 to test out at work... I work in Visual FX and have been on Linux and Winnt up until now. Currently I'm doing some wire and rig removal in Combustion on the PC and I've been eager to test everything out on the Mac before we buy a license. To my dismay the performance is HORRIBLE!! It can't even play 2K 10-bit Cineon files at 24 fps, something that my cheap 2.0 Ghz Athlon can do with ease. The best I can get it to go is 16 fps.

    I really don't understand this... Combustion writes frames to RAM and then plays them back, why can't the G5 play them back in real time?? Can someone who knows or uses discreet Combustion on both a Mac and a PC enlighten me to the performance of this program?? I really hope this isn't representative of the overall performance of the G5. I mean, I realize that Combustion probably isn't optimized for the 64-bit processer... but right now the 2 Ghz Athlon is slamming this thing. I shudder to think how Maya is going to perform, but unfortunately Alias took down the PLE download from their website until they release version 5 of PLE...

    ... any thoughts?
     
  2. macrumors 68040

    mac15

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2001
    Location:
    Sydney
    #2
    I certainly don't hope you think on app running slow would turn you off looking into one. Where did you run it? Some people at apple stores install crap thats slow down the computer. Like Seti and so forth. Try it on another G5
     
  3. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    #3
    Let me clarify "test" as meaning we bought one, and I installed Combustion right out of the box... so it is brand new.

    The reason I am concerned is because Combustion is an application I use almost daily. If it is slow on the G5... well...

    This thing is great for other stuff I know (DVD Studio Pro, FCP, and I'm sure Apple will have Shake running blazingly fast on it pretty soon), but if Maya is slow on this thing as well it means Macs are still no good for us!

    I'm sure this has plenty to do with the software vendors, and that until software is optimized for the 64-bit processor a final judgement can't be passed. I just had hoped the new G5's would have held up to similarly-clocked Intel machines when running the software I use most.

    P.S. I still want a PB for personal use, regardless. :)
     
  4. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2002
    Location:
    Boston
    #4
    I have maya and Im on a 1.42 dual g4.. tell me exactly what to do for any test you want done and I'll gladly do it for you to see if somethings just wrong with the g5 you have or the mac is really as slow as you say.
     
  5. macrumors 68000

    Falleron

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2001
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    Re: Please tell me this G5 isn't really this slow...

    Must be something to do with the setup / installation. There may be a small compatibility issue with the G5. I think that we have seen enough independant benchmarks now showing that the G5 is very quick. Try looking for a software update. Or sending an email to the software developers to see what the score is.
     
  6. macrumors G3

    jelloshotsrule

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    Location:
    serendipity
    #6
    from what i've heard, even the early tests of maya (by alias) on the dual g5s were quite impressive....

    as for combustion, not sure what to say.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    #7
    I'd be interested in comparing benchmarks. I wish I could download Maya PLE for the Mac but I don't know when Alias is going to put the link back up on the site. It says "fall 2003", so whatever that means...
     
  8. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    #8
    Performance settings

    Apparently there's a system preference pane that moderates the machine's performance (energy saver I think). The machine comes a standard with processor slewing set to "Automatic" (proc slows down under light loads to save power/heat), some have reported useful speed improvements by changing it to "Highest" (max proc speed at all times). Could try that.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    LimeLite

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
  10. macrumors 604

    iJon

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2002
    #10
    that energy saver stuff doesnt do anything, it has already been discussed here. combustion may not be optimized for the g5, go read there site and see if they have any comments.

    iJon
     
  11. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    #11
    You're probably right about the Combustion thing. I don't think it's optimized for macs very well at all. Maybe it will change with v3... but the thing that gets me is that it's having trouble playing frames loaded into RAM. There should be little-if-anything between the frames and displaying them to the screen.
     
  12. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    #12
    download a verison of After Effects 6.0 (30-day tryout version), and see if that'll play back the files. I've used both on the Mac, and frankly, Combustion 2.x is a dog on the Mac. That's all suppose to change though with version 3.0, which will be released in early 2004. The discreet product manager himself said that the delayed release is due to discreet trying to milk every ounce of performance they can get from the G5. So I'm sorry it's not working to well right now, but there should be some nice new things in store for the future.

    Also what type of video card are you using? There might be some conflicts between the video card and the software, since it's through the video card that the display is actually being refreshed.
     
  13. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    #13
    It's got the GeForceFX 5200 or something. That's good to hear about Combustion 3. We bought this thing with a Pro card, so we'll probably take it back and get a Dual G4 for much cheaper and hold off on the G5 until Q1 2004 when there's more stuff out there that takes advantage of it.
     
  14. macrumors 68000

    neut

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2001
    Location:
    here (for now)
  15. macrumors 6502a

    Schiffi

    Joined:
    May 22, 2003
    Location:
    Missouri
    #15
     
  16. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2003
    Location:
    Santa Monica, CA
    #16
    I have 512 RAM, which is not very much. But I still should be able to cache a short sequence of images and play them at real time. Combustion has a meter telling you how much ram you are using and how much is available, so I don't think this would have that much of an effect on the playback speed of a sequence that fits into ram.
     
  17. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2003
    Location:
    United States
    #17
    How much ram do you have in the machine? I've got the 1.8 G5 aswell, and as soon as I put 2 Gigs of ram in it, the thing began to scream, hope this helps. One more thing, has anyone here ever had a kernal panic? I got my first one today when i woke the G5 up. Must have been angry. lol
     
  18. macrumors 6502a

    MacRAND

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix AZ USA
    #18
    G5 rocket performance waits in Dual 2 GHz + more SDRAM

    jrapczak

    Selection of a 1.8 GHz G5 with 512 RAM to run COMBUSTION 2.1 indicates several bottlenecks, and one big potential for future speed (64-bit):

    $2,399.00
    1.8GHz PowerPC G5
    900MHz frontside bus
    512MB DDR400 128-bit SDRAM 3200
    Expandable to 8GB SDRAM
    NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 Ultra 64MB DDR video memory

    Ignore the clock speed of your G5 for right now, whether 1.8 or 2.0. That's not your primary problem.

    Combustion - ( ver. 2.1 )
    • Superior performance with optimized rendering, multiprocessor support, extensive caching, and multiple viewports -- all with real time looped playback
    • Support for Adobe After Effects and Adobe Photoshop plug-ins
    * Resolution-independent with 8-, 10-, 12-, 16- bit and float-bit/component image processing
    System Requirements:
    PowerPC G3 or G4 CPU, 266MHz or higher; Mac OS 9.x, Mac OS X 10.1 or
    Mac OS X v10.2; QuickTime 4.0, 5.0 or 6.0;
    2GB main hard drive with 120MB free space (70MB for the software, 45 MB for help);
    256MB of RAM;
    Video display card with 4MB of VRAM (1024 x 768 display with 24-bit color minimum required)

    DUAL Processor: Combustion is designed for a multiprocessor.:) This points to maximization of the software on a Dual 2.0 G5, not a 1.8 or 1.6 single :(

    SDRAM - OS X uses at least 128 MB of RAM
    Combustion specifies 256MB of RAM. That leaves only 128MB left.
    Suggest you accept advice of BillClinton and add at least 2 GB more RAM. Use 1 GB chips (512 minimum) two at a time and matching.
    DDR RAM chip prices have come down dramatically in the last several months.
    Word is that the G5 advertised limit of "Expandable to 8GB SDRAM" means "using 8 x 1GB Chips that are currently available". When 2GB Chips (not sets) become available, those who are hardware savy say the current G5 offering will max out at 16GB, and there are high-end users who will pull out their half and 1GB chips with glee while replacing them with new 2GB DDR400 3200, when economically feasible. :)
    There is a theory that you can never have enough RAM. For high-end uses (and users like you) like yours, it may not be just a theory.

    AltiVec Architecture - Combustion2 may or may not take advantage of AltiVec design, but there is hope that version 3 will.

    64-Bit aware: probably the biggest speed enhancer would be if Combustion3 is designed for both 32 and 64-bit.

    :)
    For $600, you can significantly upgrade your G5 by returning the 1.8 single processor and getting the DUAL 2.0 G5
    (BONUS: 10% faster clock speed and frontside bus);
    uses same SDRAM chips,
    but has a better (FASTER) video board.

    Then upgrade SDRAM with Apple at:
    (may NOT be add on - Apple may replace RAM already installed at this price)
    2 x .512 GB for $250 (only $195 to $179 online )
    2 x 1.000 GB for $1,050

    $2,999.00
    Dual 2GHz PowerPC G5
    1GHz frontside bus
    512MB DDR400 128-bit SDRAM 3200
    Expandable to 8GB SDRAM
    ATI Radeon 9600 Pro 64MB DDR video memory

    And YES, all of us will have to wait a little while for optimized software to catchup with this giant leap in hardware technology.:rolleyes:
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    MacRAND

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix AZ USA
    #19
    Not enough RAM could really be a problem. Combustion3 may well be a big solution.

    Combustion 2.1 • Mac OSX

    Video: 256 MB free RAM (min),
    512 MB (recommended)

    Film: 512 MB free RAM (min),
    1 GB (recommended)

    Not enough RAM in your G5 is most likely the biggest problem next to not having a dual chip G5.

    Combustion 3 may well be a HUGE part of your ultimate work solution
    http://www.discreet.com/products/combustion3/
    :cool:

    According to Discreet "combustion 3 offers the creative tools, speed and interactivity that professionals need and artists crave."

    "The best part is the HUGE increase in SPEED. I'm a great fan of COMBUSTION 3" MARC M.

    All this HOOPLA for a product that is not yet available to the public, nor are the specs. Another wait and see.

    jrapczak, please let all of us know how you eventually solve your problem.
    Hey, if you don't like your G5, anyone of us would love a GIFT...and be happy to pay the shipping.
    Want my dual 1GHz in exchange? It's RAM is maxed out at 1.5GB

    I'll trade a Dodge Neon for a Dodge Viper anyday!
     
  20. macrumors 6502a

    MacRAND

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix AZ USA
    #20
    kernal panic

    BillClinton

    Kernal Panics are scarry.

    What did you do to solve it?

    Everytime I load new software , and at least once a month, I use Disk Utility (Applications:Utilities) to run a Repair Disk Permissions under the First Aid tab (don't waste time on a "Verify Disk Permissions", just Repair it).

    BTW Kudos to you, Schiffi and LimeLite on your more RAM recommendation, you were all right on target.

    jrapczak, please don't think about going backwards to a G4, if you need a new Mac the real choice (as long as you have the coins) is G5 dual 2.0 GHz with lots of RAM... until they come out with something faster.

    You are aware that Virginia Tech U. just bought 1,100 of them to construct a SuperComputer Cluster (think CRAY)?

    http://www.cray.com/
    http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?threadid=38908&highlight=virginia+tech

    More Photos at:
    http://www.unit69.com/terascale/


    I paid $3000 for my G4 Dual 1.0 GHz and I love it, but it can't begin to compare with the next generation G5.
     
  21. macrumors 603

    solvs

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    LaLaLand, CA
    #21
    Get more RAM and update the video card to the Radeon 9800 (the AGP 8x one), if you can. And upgrade to the new Combustion, version 3 (I think). If you can afford it, yeah go for the Dual 2 GHz machine. The 1.8 with 512 MB and a GF MX will be slow for what you do. After Effects, too.
     
  22. macrumors 604

    scem0

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2002
    Location:
    back in NYC!
    #22
    you speak as though all those things are free.

    Yes, a dual 2 GHz with a Radeon 9800 AGP 8x, tons of ram, etc etc etc will get the job done. But a PC that would do just as well would cost tons less.

    scem0
     
  23. macrumors 6502a

    Rezet

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2003
    Location:
    Connecticut, United States of America
    #23
    I don't know man. I'm on 1.8 G5 with ATi 9600 and this computer is blazingly fast. I didn't do any real testing. One thing i can say is that on WC III i set resolution to 1400x1200x32 with all details on highest and never got single shake during the game. I cant do much more testing for now since i dont have photoshop or any testing programs at this point. If you have suggestions, i'll see what i can do.
     
  24. macrumors 603

    solvs

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Location:
    LaLaLand, CA
    #24
    That's why I said "if you can afford it". Some things are faster on a PC, yes. Whether it would get the job done (and whether it would be THAT much cheaper for similar specs), or not... that's debatable.

    And yes, I've edited on a PC. Ugh.
     
  25. macrumors 6502a

    MacRAND

    Joined:
    May 24, 2003
    Location:
    Phoenix AZ USA
    #25
    Be cheap, get a PC

    you speak as though all those things are free.
    Yes, a dual 2 GHz with a Radeon 9800 AGP 8x, tons of ram, etc etc etc will get the job done. But a PC that would do just as well would cost tons less.

    Oh, scem0!
    Oh, scem0!

    RAM is important regardless of the platform or the computer, but the PC platform requires about 40% more RAM and storage than a Mac because the SAME files and applications are much larger on a PC.

    DDRAM400 PC-3200 is the same price whether Mac or PC, but he'll need more RAM for a PC than a Mac.

    For a mere $600 increase over his "single 1.8 chip" investment, he gets a DUAL 2.0 GHz 64-bit G5 with a 10%+ increase in chip clock and bus speed INCLUDING the
    ATI Radeon 9600 Pro 64MB DDR video memory for FREE.

    Regardless of the platform, he will still have to pay for combustion3, maybe more if he CROSSES platforms and doesn't get the benefit of an upgrade discount from 2.1.

    As a business expense, it's a TAX write-off either way.

    Why go PC and settle for 2nd best?
    Does that mythical PC have FireWire800, iApps (iPhoto, iMovie, iDVD, iSync, iCal, etc.), Cocoa, AirPort Extreme, a SuperDrive, Optical Audio connections, Gig Ethernet, Bluetooth plug&play connectivity to phones, mice, keyboards, and other peripherals without additional drivers on a CD, etc. etc. etc.?
    Can it run Final Cut Pro with the greatest of ease?

    Shall he turn in his super cool Cinema Display for an ACER CRT? (Cheap! right?)

    If you were a real MacUser, you would no more think of living outside of Jaguar or Panther cyberspace, or working on anything other than an IBM PPC G4 or G5 chip than... cheat on your wife.

    So. Now we know! You have FEELINGS for MS INTEL. Cheater!!!

    Such alien thoughts are rotten to the core.

    Marked with the Scarlet Letter "A" ...for Apple, are you.

    Henceforth, you are hereby and forever banished (unless repentent) from Apple Land and the Infinite Loop, cast out onto the crooked path through the very Gates of Intel, the windows of no soul.

    Yes, settle for less. Turn in your monochrome Apple.
    Lastly, your soubriquet shall henceforth be: XPscem0

    So sayeth MacRAND,
    the salubrious and
    über Mac loyalist 1984
    quoth the Panther "Never More".
    :D
     

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