3.2GHz Quad-Core “Nehalem” vs 3.33GHz 6-Core “Westmere”

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by BrenMyster, Aug 10, 2010.

  1. BrenMyster macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    #1
    ahhhhhh, I'm one of the many many people who are juggling mac pro options in my head.

    is the 3.33GHz Westmere worth the extra £640? Probably not, but now much faster will be it? 20%....30%?

    I think I'm set on either of these two options, mainly using FCP and photoshop and a bit of motion. maybe a bit of gaming :)

    Also I can max out them four RAM slots and get a 5870 with the extra cash:)

    What you guys think?
     
  2. eponym macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2010
    #2
    I'm in the same boat. I really don't know which way to go.

    cpubenchmark is showing a significant difference in performance scores (but I'm not sure how reflective of the real world these numbers are):

    6-Core
    vs
    3.2 Quad
     
  3. eponym macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2010
    #3
    And looking at Geekbench scores, the 6-core is consistently getting scores 50% higher than the quad 3.2.

    Hmmm...
     
  4. bzollinger macrumors 6502a

    bzollinger

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    #4
    I'm going to wait until I see some more benchmarks, perferrably some "real world" applications. Although the difference between the two in post #2 is HUGE!! :eek:
     
  5. ghostchild macrumors 6502

    ghostchild

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2007
    #5
    no way.
     
  6. eponym macrumors 6502

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    Jul 2, 2010
    #6

    Sorry. That wasn't entirely accurate. There's a lot of W3680 scores, but PC builders can apparently overclock it pretty easily into the 4+ GHz range.
     
  7. BrenMyster thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    #7
    I know, it's a hard choice, but I think I have made my mind up, going for the 3.33 with the 5870 and I'm going to throw on 8gb of RAM to start (not apple's)

    I'm about 400 over budget but I will kick myself for the next 4-5 years if I don't go for it.
     
  8. johnnymg macrumors 65816

    johnnymg

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2008
    #8
    I'm quite surprised at the difference in those scores. I wouldn't have thought there would be a 50% boost from the hex. Are these synthetic benchmarks?

    Makes me wonder if I should reconsider my 3.2 Quad order. :confused:

    cheers
    JohnG
     
  9. reel2reel macrumors 6502a

    reel2reel

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    Jul 24, 2009
    #9
    I don't think you can go wrong and that extra $400 will be money very well spent. Congrat's.
     
  10. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #10
    6 is 50% bigger than 4 is plus W3680 has 133MHz higher frequency so ~50% sounds reasonable. That's just a theoretical difference which can be achieved when all 6 cores can be used. For OP, quad seems to be just fine, even the 2.8GHz. The CPU can later on be upgraded to faster one and even for less $ than Apple offers it
     
  11. reel2reel macrumors 6502a

    reel2reel

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    Jul 24, 2009
    #11
    I wonder how much difference the increase in L3 Cache makes.
     
  12. BrenMyster thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    #12
    I'm doing a bit of editing on my 2008 2.5 MBP and this dam beach ball is driving my insane, one cure for that.....

    just put the order though :)

    One 3.33GHz 6-Core Intel Xeon “Westmere” 065-9538
    Magic Mouse 1E065-9589
    1TB 7200-rpm Serial ATA 3Gb/s hard drive 065-9557
    3 GB (3 x 1 GB) 065-9542
    Apple Keyboard with Numeric Keypad (British) & User's Guide (English) B065-9593
    ATI Radeon HD 5870 1GB 065-9573
     
  13. bzollinger macrumors 6502a

    bzollinger

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    #13
    Nice purchase!!

    I'm torn between these two as well. Anyone care to speculate on the speed difference between the 3.2GHz Quad Nehalem, and the i7 Core iMac?
     
  14. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Finland
    #14
    ~9%, just a raw mathematical difference (3.2GHz divided by 2.93GHz). Xeon has just support for ECC, otherwise they should be the same and only clock speed is different
     
  15. bzollinger macrumors 6502a

    bzollinger

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    #15
    What if the turbo boost feature is taken into effect?

    That's one very inticing thing with the hexcore, 3.33GHz to start is nice, but boosting to 3.6GHz is pretty awesome! While the 3.2GHd quad can boost to 3.4GHz....
     
  16. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

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    Sep 4, 2006
    #16
    I'm torn between the two as well!!!!

    One of my logic is that once Sandy Bridge is out next year and if I go ahead with the 3.2GHz I would be glad that I saved the extra $1000. But on the other hand, if the 3.33GHz Westmere is THAT much faster, I would be glad that I went with the 3.33GHz when Sandy Bridge is out. :mad:
     
  17. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    #17
    i7 has more aggressive Turbo, up to 3.6GHz while 3.2GHz quad has only 3.46GHz.

    3.6GHz divided by 3.46GHz is ~4% so both can boost by two multipliers (266MHz), no huge difference.

    Oh and one thing, I miscalculated in my post above as I was thinking about the OLD iMac with 2.8GHz i7, the real difference is ~9% (3.2GHz vs 2.93GHz)
     
  18. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

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    Sep 4, 2006
    #18
    Man even though its only 9% difference between the 2.93GHz and 3.2GHz, that 3.2GHz by default without turbo boosting looks sweet.

    I remember when I had the 2.8GHz 8 core 2008 Mac Pro, everyone was using some tool to overclock their 2.8GHz to 3.0-3.2GHz and that was a big deal lol.
     
  19. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #19
    i7-870 has Turbo which can overclock ALL four cores to 3.2GHz when needed so theoretically it's 3.2GHz if needed and the system is relatively cool. W3565 also has that kind of feature but it's not as aggressive, only 3.33GHz for all four cores. I don't think these minor differences in CPUs are the deal-breakers when choosing iMac vs Mac Pro. If you really want something faster than iMac, get the six or eight core...
     
  20. bzollinger macrumors 6502a

    bzollinger

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    #20
    Good information and good point. The real motivation for me to go w/ an MP is the 4 internal drives, and PCI slots. When it comes to CPU power, when talking about the quad or hex, and comparing it to the iMac i7, you're right it shouldn't be a big part of the decision process.....Just trying to justify the extra $$.:D:(
     
  21. jjahshik32 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2006
    #21
    For me the reason I have my eye on the Mac Pro is because I dont like the all in one thing with the iMacs. I dont doubt that the iMac has the best value but for me the all in one thing is driving me away.

    Also aesthetically, I love the way the Mac Pro looks on top of a big desk but the other big reason is due to the hard drive bays which I could really use. I suppose the XEON grade helps a bit in the long run as theoretically, its supposed to be built to last a long time.

    Hopefully when Sandy Bridge is out, the 08', 09', 10' Mac Pros can use whatever GPU is coming up next. Thats one of the big thing that worries me. A small voice in the back of my mind is telling me to chug along on my mac mini until sometime next year when Sandy Bridge is out.

    Now I'm at the point of get the 6 core Westmere now or wait for Sandy Bridge next year.
     
  22. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Dec 10, 2008
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    Finland
    #22
    Well, the good thing about Mac Pro is upgradeability. Even if you bought the 2.8GHz quad core, you should be able to (not sure yet do they use the same EFI that supports B1 stepping that W3680 uses but they should) upgrade to W3680 later on and even cheaper than from Apple. W3680 goes for around 1100$ and W3530 goes for ~300$ so if you bought W3680 and sold the W3530 that came with your Mac Pro, it would cost you about 800$, 400$ less than from Apple.

    Don't quote me on this as we don't know does the 2010 quad support B1 stepping but I can't see why they would not.
     
  23. bzollinger macrumors 6502a

    bzollinger

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2005
    #23
    I'm in this same boat too. I was waiting for the 2010 MPs, then had to buy something so I picked up the 2.53 late 09 mini and stuck a Momentus XT in it. For the most part is working great! I love it compared to my G5. But I'm still maxing it out when doing heavy LR2, CS4, and Photomatix work.

    SandyBridge will be great, but is it going to be another 500+ day wait? If so I don't think I can wait that long especially if I upgrade my DSLR to the next 5D MarkXXX full frame camera.

    In that case pulling the trigger on one of the 2010 models now, is a good idea because as we know, in a year or more from now the price will be the same!
     
  24. xgman macrumors 601

    xgman

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2007
    #24
    Judging by how long it too to get this modest update out the door, you should have plenty of time and then some to save up the extra dough.
     
  25. Macinposh macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Location:
    Kreplakistan
    #25


    It is not worth a toss to upgrade if you are solely using it for photo processing.


    The speed differencies in pure photoshopping (even 1-2Gb pics) are still constrained by performance of the programs,be it PS CS3,CS4 or CS5.
    Some obscure filters might benefit from the speedups,but in general,dont bother.

    You will gain much larger benefits by using keyboard shortcuts,reading the manual,taking a course,buying a wacom and learning properly automation than any computer upgrade.


    Lightroom / Aperture will show some speedup (sometimes even significant if processing large libraries) with the newer machines but as a generalized you wouldnt notice difference in everyday work between MP 06,08,09 or 10
    if doing day-to-day photoshopping for print.
     

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