Any reason to go 8800GT for non-gamers? In the long run?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Taustin Powers, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. Taustin Powers macrumors regular

    Apr 5, 2005
    I am dropping the cash on the Mac Pro with the intention of keeping it for quite a few years.

    I am not buying it for gaming, I do that on my PS3.

    Probably the most advanced stuff I will be doing is high definition video editing in the future, especially when I can install a bluray burner. Other than that, multitrack music recording, photo editing, office applications, watching movies, etc. Will the different video card have any effect on the performance of these tasks? (Planning on 4GB of ram for now.)

    I can afford the 8800GT upgrade, but is it a total waste on me and my applications? Will the stock video card turn into a bottleneck in, say, three years down the road?
  2. Soop53 macrumors regular


    Jan 20, 2008
    Unless you are doing major graphic stuff (photo edit...etc) or gaming (as you stated you are not), I see no reason to order the 8800. You can always order one down the road if you needs change.
  3. Madhawk macrumors regular


    Mar 7, 2007
    I think the extra 512MB on the 8800GT will help with the Video editing...
    maybe I am wrong, but I am sure editing uses the power of a graphics card.:confused:
  4. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    If you are doing high res video editing then the 8800 seems almost necessary. Why buy a video card that is ok now but may not do everything you want with ease?
  5. Taustin Powers thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 5, 2005
    Okay thanks. I wasn't sure if high res video editing warrants the 512 MB card, or if it was mostly just demanding on the processor & ram.

    8800GT it is then, so I guess I'd better take a very comfortable seat while I wait....
  6. jasonvp macrumors 6502a


    Jun 29, 2007
    Northern VA
    That depends entirely on what application is being used for the video/photo editing. Final Cut, for instance, doesn't care what kind of video card the machine has. Photoshop also doesn't care.

    There are other apps out there that do take advantage of the video card's processing and RAM. You just need to figure out whether you're using one of those apps or not.

  7. echoout macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2007
    Austin, Texas
    I am a broadcast motion graphics designer by trade and I could find no reason to go with the 88800GT. None of my applications need it and the ones that do use it for functions that I would disable anyway. In my 3D apps, I prefer to work in wireframe for instance. And in After Effects, I disable OpenGL which is pretty clunky. So, I'm fine with the ATI.
  8. Reach macrumors 6502a

    Sep 7, 2006
  9. Taustin Powers thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 5, 2005
    Hmm....undecided again now.

    I will order tomorrow, it would be nice to hear some more opinions.

    I would hate to spend money on a video card, that is potentially warmer (and therefore louder, with the fans) and will not give me any noticable difference in performance.

    My high definition video editing I would most likely try to do with iMovie. Not on a professional level.
  10. jasonvp macrumors 6502a


    Jun 29, 2007
    Northern VA
    You won't see any difference in performance with the 8800, and you'll also get to wait 2-4 weeks for your Mac! I'd say order the base ATI (and I'm a big nVidia fanboy, too!)

  11. yesthisisapc macrumors member

    Nov 3, 2007
    I make games, do I count as a gamer? I mean... you know... playtesting...
  12. ReanimationLP macrumors 68030


    Jan 8, 2005
    On the moon.
    Order it with the 2600.

    From what you've stated, you'll see no difference.

    Now if your needs DO change, you can buy the card aftermarket, add it in alongside your 2600, and then you'll have the extra performance, as well as being able to drive 4 30" displays.

    Which is probably only good for really, really heavy high-end work.
  13. LOZER macrumors member

    Jan 12, 2008
    Kalamazoo, MI
    8800 GT for photos and video will help a lot in the long run and why not, I mean your already getting a Mac Pro. Go the extra I think $200 bto 8800 GT.
  14. Taustin Powers thread starter macrumors regular

    Apr 5, 2005
    I will only run one display for now at 1680x1050, either 20" or 22".

    In the long run, MAYBE I will add a second one, but definitely no more than that.

    And I just remembered that there is ONE game I will play:

    However, the engine is fairly dated at this point, and I'm not sure if I would see a performance boost there...?

    I'm thinking I can always get the ATI now, and maybe upgrade a year or so down the road, when the 8800GT is a lot cheaper.

    Hmm....decisions, decisions...

    I wouldnt mind spending the money per se. What I would mind is spending it on absolutely NOTHING as far as my usage of the computer goes, waiting for 4 weeks, and having a potentially louder computer.
  15. bigbird macrumors 6502

    Aug 17, 2007
    The price for the 8800GT from Apple, which is the only 8800GT that is compatible with your MP, will not go down in price. Once Apple sets its prices, they'll stay there until the product is no longer offered for sale. Case in point: The 1900XT from the previous version of the MP is still the same price as the day it was introduced. My advice: get the 8800GT now. You won't be sorry.
  16. Trishul macrumors regular


    Oct 27, 2006
    Sarasota, FL
    i would personally go with the X2600XT, i wasn't aware the 8800 is louder, otherwise i would have said just pay the extra as you will never know when you might need that extra juice... but you will be waiting a month for it if you order with the 8800 compared to a few days.

    from what i've read it looks like you will never benefit with a 8800, if you aren't going to use Final Cut Studio (motion) then there's no point, just get the standard card, in a few months if you feel its holding you back or you've suddenly started to use Maya 3D then look to upgrade then.. the price difference between going with the 8800 now and buying seperately later isn't that huge.. and if you went that route you will always have a 2nd graphics card, and while its not been confirmed you should be able to run both side by side, and therefore potentially add more displays to your setup :)
  17. THX1139 macrumors 68000


    Mar 4, 2006
    If you ever plan to use Motion (part of Final Cut Studio), or use any 3d applications then get the 8800. Otherwise, save your money to buy ram.
  18. LostSunrise macrumors member

    Sep 22, 2006
    I agree

    I don't know what the hoopla about this card is. For video editing people are making these brash assumptions. from what I know only a few bells and whistles for some of the major video apps bother with the aid of GPUs and most pros don't bother with those. For strict video cutting with basic transitions you don't need the fancy video card unless you're making some film school orgasm with goofy built in filters and effects and even then those are mainly CPU dependent.
  19. ErikAndre macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2007
    Listen, if you're really going to take advantage of your new MacPro, you may as well just bite the bullet, get the 8800GT and be done with it. It's not that much more to upgrade the BTO.

    Here's my take on the whole matter: If you are on the fence, just get it. And yes, it sounds like you need it. As I posted elsewhere, the 8800GT is most likely not but a week away from release.
  20. echoout macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2007
    Austin, Texas

  21. elvisizer macrumors 6502

    May 29, 2003
    San Jose
    it speeds up aperture's performance pretty significantly.
    anything that uses core image will be accelerated by the GPU.
    slow gpu (like the ati 2600) equals slow core image. in fact, i'd be curious to see some benchmarks from a mac pro with an ati 2600 with core image enabled and disabled. If os x supports the new sse4 vector instructions on the penryn xeons, core image might actually be faster when rendered with the cpu's than the ati card!
    from the core image wiki:

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