A question for MacPro professional users.

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

  1. gazwas macrumors member

    gazwas

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    UK
    #1
    Much of the talk on here at the moment about the new MacPros seems centred around the graphics cards gaming performance. As a photographer, this is of no interest to me and the base card (HD2600 I think?) in my 08 MacPro works just fine for me.

    However with the recent change over to mini display port by many high end monitor manufacturers, support for 10bit colour input has been brought to my attention.

    Do any of the new graphics cards support 10bit output or does Mac OSX even support this feature?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Sqadush macrumors newbie

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  3. Macinposh macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    So,basically,by getting a 4870 you can save 5000$ when not getting the new 10 MP!


    Steve is going to rip his underwear...
    :D
     
  4. eponym macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Not at all. GPU performance is hardly just about gaming.
     
  5. goMac macrumors 603

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    #5
    Photography apps use the GPU also. Aperture and Lightroom are both GPU based.

    Aperture I know will drag significantly on the HD2600.
     
  6. Macinposh macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    But in Lightroom,practically no real world differences between 7300gt and 4870.
     
  7. gazwas thread starter macrumors member

    gazwas

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    #7
    Capture One and Photoshop CS5, the main stay of my working day run just fine with the HD2600.

    Can't see anything a better GPU will offer for me other than support for 10bit display output. :confused:

    I've been looking at the exact Eizo monitor linked to by Sqadush above and the new NEC Spectraview Reference 271. Both offer support for 10bit input via display port.
     
  8. goMac macrumors 603

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    #8
    If you're only using Photoshop, it probably doesn't matter too much. Photoshop hasn't had much in the way of GPU acceleration, and the new versions of Photoshop seem to have issues with the GPU acceleration they added.
     
  9. gazwas thread starter macrumors member

    gazwas

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    #9
    Yes, I'm not looking for improved GPU performance/speed because everything works fine for me as is but I'm looking at the improved colour output. So does anyone know if Mac OSX and the new GPU's support 10bit output.
     
  10. goMac macrumors 603

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    #10
    I would read the link Sqadush posted. If the 4870 supports 10 bit, the 5870 will likely support it too.

    (Also note that you will have to turn on GPU mode in Photoshop to use it, meaning that you're going to be become GPU bound instead of CPU bound. Also you'll want to make sure you have a recent version of Photoshop.)
     
  11. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #11
    Take a look here.

    It seems that the hardware would be capable (GPU + MDP, as DP can pass 30 bit color), but apparently there's another limitation (drivers, OS X, or both) that currently prevent it. :(

    However, note the dates (newest = 15 May, 2010) on the posts in the links. Since audio has been added since then, it's possible that 10 bit support may become available over MDP (i.e. may be included with the new drivers + 10.6.5).
     
  12. goMac macrumors 603

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    #12
    As noted in the thread and the other link, it's an issue with the NVidia drivers. ATI's drivers on the Mac output 10 bit color just fine when paired with a compatible card.
     
  13. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #13
    I may have misunderstood what I read then, as I interpreted MDP didn't output 10 bit on ATI either under OS X (driver and/or OS X issues).
     
  14. gazwas thread starter macrumors member

    gazwas

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    #14
    So it all seems promising on the hardware side (and even with my new MacBook Pro which is unexpected) but its just a matter of waiting for Apple to pull their finger out and implament support for 10bit colour in their mini displayport drivers.

    Such a shame that Apple are dragging their feet with this type of stuff when you consider they used to lead the way with these sort of professional tech features. :(
     
  15. goMac macrumors 603

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    #15
    NVidia writes the NVidia drivers for Mac, the ball is kind of in their court, not up to Apple...

    As of 10.6 the Mac ATI drivers support 10 bit color.
     
  16. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    #16
    I was under the strong impression that Apple developed the nVidia drivers (at least for their OEM cards). And ATI did their own for OS X (completely developed the ATI PCIe based 3870 and 4870 cards; iMacs would have to have the firmware developed by Apple, as it's soldered to the logic board).

    Do you have a clear/definitive source on this?
     
  17. gazwas thread starter macrumors member

    gazwas

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    #17
    Yes, I've also not seen any mention of this anywhere so do you run an ATI card in 10bit with one of the new 10bit displays to confirm this?
     

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