3.33 6core vs 2.66 12 core

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by allupons, Aug 15, 2010.

  1. allupons macrumors member

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    Mar 11, 2010
    #1
    I have a few quick questions. I am going to be buying 1 of these two machines tonight and I have been contemplating which to go with for nearly two weeks. I have been editing on a core 2 duo 2.2 Ghz mbp for 2 years now and I have been desperately waiting for the 2010 mac pro refresh. I plan on using them for editing hd video in final cut / premiere, after effects, photoshop, lightroom and some gaming. The cost difference before a 3rd party ram upgrade boils down to roughly $3800 for 6 core vs $5000 for the 12 core (i have the education discount as I work for a university). I also don't earn my living through these computers as of yet, but I have done more than a handful of freelance work over the last year outside of my fulltime job, as well as having recently finished a feature length film. (shameless plug of trailer can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X5Yg1I6h4lI)

    Ok, having said all that, and understanding that neither 3800 or 5000 is an insignificant amount of money, I have a few questions on which investment makes the most sense for me. For starters, what is the turbo boosted speed of each of the two chips i am looking at, and how many cores can be turbo boosted on each. I haven't quite been able to figure that out yet on my own.

    Secondly, I realize that only AE will really take advantage of 12 cores at this stage (although final cut may get an update soon enough that changes all of this) but what sort of performance difference should I expect if both systems have roughly the same amount of ram? I have read a bit on this on macperformanceguide.com but he doesnt spend a great deal of analysis on after effects or programs that may actually tax the entire system.

    Mostly though, for this sort of purchase I just want overall opinions and advice, heh. Any thoughts are very welcome before I finally pull the trigger on one of these systems, and thanks in advance for any help.
     
  2. iRobertM macrumors regular

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    #2
    I originally went with the 12 core but then updated my order to the 3.33. The higher clock speed will make a difference in most applications and with hyper-threading that 12 virtual CPUs.

    You can always upgrade the CPU's in the DP version but I told myself when I got around to doing that there will be a "new" Mac Pro out.
     
  3. allupons thread starter macrumors member

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    Mar 11, 2010
    #3
    Yea, with the cost of these CPUs I would doubt I would spend 2k+ on a cpu upgrade years from now as opposed to simply getting the newest overall machine.
     
  4. sboerup macrumors 6502

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    #4
    I personally think the 6-core is the fastest 2010 MP for most everyone. My logic is, that if you have to ask which one is for you, you're better off with the 6-core. You would know if the 12-core will be the better investment in the long run.

    The macperformanceguide.com does attest to the fact that the previous 3.33ghz QUAD was faster than the 2.93 OCTO in almost all applications. If you're doing some heavy processing (you'd probably know), then the hexacore to me seems like the safest buy.
     
  5. 300D macrumors 65816

    300D

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  6. strausd macrumors 68030

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    #6
    If you plan on doing A LOT of work in AE, and I mean A LOT, then the 12-core might be worth it. Otherwise, you will notice a bigger speed increase with the 6-core. But if a majority of your apps will be able to take full advantage of all 24 virtual cores, go for that.
     
  7. skiffx macrumors 6502a

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    Feb 5, 2008
    #7
    Id also recommend 6 core 3.33. I also think that it might have a better resale value later on from the investment point of you, as it will have more demand than the dual cores.
     
  8. strausd macrumors 68030

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    #8
    Dual CPUs you mean :p
     
  9. skiffx macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    yeh ;)
     
  10. allupons thread starter macrumors member

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    Mar 11, 2010
    #10
    Thanks for the advice. The unfortunate part is that I do plenty of AE and I would truly see a ton of benefit from the 12 core, but since it doesnt really pay for itself at all and is simply my passion the cost is tough to deal with. It is certainly within my budget to go that route, but then when the red scarlet comes out at either the end of this year or early next year, perhaps that lost 1.5k makes that purchase a much harder decision, etc. So while I am one of the rare users that would get the power out of 12 cores, the cost is hard to swallow in the face of also needing production funds. Such a tough call that I really am having a hard time deciding, heh.
     
  11. skiffx macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    yeh but a 6core system isnt exactly pentium 1 either ;) Maybe makes sense to get it first, work with it for a few years as you start working more and more with movie making, and start earning from it, that $1.5K will definitely help out on top of price you'll fetch for a used 6core.
     
  12. THX1139 macrumors 68000

    THX1139

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    #12
    12 cores is going to help you the most when it comes to rendering out a finished project. For basic editing and having fast previews, you're better off with faster cores and LOTS of ram.

    Then there are apps that don't take advantage of multiple cores (ahem... Final Cut Pro?).

    So, unless you are doing tons of finished rendering (3d, After Effects), you're better off with higher clock speeds. I think the hexacore 3.33 is the best of both worlds for most applications.
     
  13. harlem macrumors member

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    May 28, 2010
    #13
    here's what i would do

    "get the 6-core"

    save the remaining money, in all honesty this macpro 2010 update is one huge disappointment. i'm "guessing" the next macpro update will be the comeback of the macpro...its definetly going to get a new design, its going to have newest CPU's, maybe lightpeak...newer technology all around. not saying its going to happen soon and it might take another 500+days before we see an update but in the mean time the 6-core should be enough to get you trough.

    you could still get a good price for your 6-core in a year or two, take the money, put the 1500$ on top and get the latest and greatest.

    in the end you will be glad you didn't pay so much money for the 12-core.

    and like mentioned before, the 6-core is a good machine, 6-cores at 3.33 isn't bad, only bottleneck is the RAM here...
     
  14. allupons thread starter macrumors member

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    #14
    You all may have convinced me. I think i can sleep at night while ordering a 6 core mac pro. It certainly will murder my current core 2 duo setup, and will likely make upgrading to a new machine in the future less painfull than if i dropped 5k on the machine. Hopefully when the new final cut studio is released in the near future as 64 bit i dont eat my words, lol.
     
  15. barefeats macrumors 65816

    barefeats

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    #15
    After Effects CS5 needs the right combo of Memory and Cores to go fast.

    When you enable multiprocessing, you need to specify how much memory per core. Once you do, AE tells you how many cores it will use to render.

    Check out these results for a 12 core Westmere with 24G of RAM rendering a sample project created from Total Training:
    .75G per core x 24 cores = 126 sec
    1G x 17 = 34 sec
    1.5G x 11 = 32 sec
    2G x 8 = 34 sec

    So in this case 11 cores x 1.5G each is the sweet spot. Can't wait to try this test on a 6 core Westmere -- though I will need three 8G memory sticks to reach 24G -- since it only has 4 memory slots.
     
  16. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

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    #16
    go with the Hexacore and blow that saved cash on 3x8GB RAM and buy HDDs with the remaining $400
     
  17. SPeditor macrumors regular

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    Jun 12, 2008
    #17
    I went with the 8 core to prepare for the future release of a 64-bit FCP. I was told twice by Apple that the 6 core is a better buy now, but the 8 core with more memory will better handle the next FCP update.
     
  18. allupons thread starter macrumors member

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    #18
    Those are really interesting results barefeats. In the case of the 6 core it can easily match that 11 thread sweet spot. Although i presume that the 24 threads would then dominate again with 48gigs of ram, but at this point i think i can honestly say I dont see myself dropping the $3000 it would cost for that much ram. Given this new information, at least in regards to AE, i feel even better about the 6 core / 12 thread machine. Granted, the results may vary a great deal with the 64 bit final cut pro that is inevitable, but all the same. Just have to pray that the 6 core mac pro can accept 8 gig mem chips for the future.

    ps. i love you site barefeats and thanks for all the great performance tests you report on. keep up the great work!
     
  19. allupons thread starter macrumors member

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    Mar 11, 2010
    #19
    SPeditor, I basically refuse to acknowledge the 8 core as an option because the only advantage it has over the 6 core machine is more ram slots. That is it. At non-optimized multicore tasks, it will get slaughtered. Even with multicore tasks you are talking the 6 core = 20 Ghz of multitasking power and the 8 core = 19.2. Granted, if you actually plan on dropping 8x8 gig chips and then upgrading the processors in the future the dual chip board would be great, but the ram alone would cost you 3k and the chips upgrades would be a ton as well. At that point, might as well just buy a new machine when that day comes. I really think the only 2 machines people should be considering for the most part is the 6 core and the 12 cores, with price vs need settling which machine to pick.
     
  20. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #20
    8GB sticks are out? :confused:
     
  21. CaoCao macrumors 6502a

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    #21
    Yes, they came out last year and are insanely expensive (like $400 a stick!)
     
  22. DoFoT9 macrumors P6

    DoFoT9

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    #22
    oh, DUH! :rolleyes: thus the 64GB max limit in 2009 MPs etc. $400 a stick isnt too bad.
     
  23. SPeditor macrumors regular

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    Jun 12, 2008
    #23
    I totally see what you are saying. Everthing but the 3k to upgrade the ram. I was going to buy a 6 core. But after speaking to 2 Apple "specialist" this past week, they both convinced me to go 8 core for the 64bit FCP update.

    Please call Apple and see if they say different, when comparing 6 core vs 8 core for a future 64bit FCP. Please post what they say.
     
  24. allupons thread starter macrumors member

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    #24
    Hey SPeditor, I have talked to many retailers and specialists before and the sad truth is that most of these people only have vague general advice. The reason they are telling you that the 8 core will be better for final cut pro 64 bit is because it has more ram slots. This however only makes a difference in the event you need more than 24gigs of ram (the max triple channel ram configuration of the 6 core mac pro). The reason the only difference is ram is because the 6 core machine literally has more processing power, with both single core AND even multicore. The processing power of the 6 core machine is simply faster under all circumstances. It can, however, hold twice as much ram. Myself personally, I dont plan on requiring more than 24 gigs of ram over the next few years, as going above that would cost an extreme amount of money.

    So basically, if you honestly believe you require more than 24 gigs of ram the 8 core machine MIGHT be faster SOMETIMES in the 64 bit version of final cut. However, if you dont stock more than 24 gigs of ram, even then the 6 core will outperform it by a decent margain. Now, of course the 12 core machine will beat out the 6 core and 8 core by a healthy margain with a fully 64 bit app, but that also increases the price by $1500, so yea.
     
  25. sboerup macrumors 6502

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    #25
    Ya, I keep reading through a lot of posts in the last week about people speaking with an Apple "specialist". Sounds like they understand enough about the machines to sell it, but really are out of the loop as what is best for certain applications. There is a LOT more wisdom here on the forums.
     

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