ATI 4870 / 4850 with Maya?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by stormtroopar, Jun 1, 2009.

  1. stormtroopar macrumors member

    Feb 3, 2009

    Has anyone used the ATI 4870 with the MacPro using Maya 2008 / 2009? How about the 4850 on the iMac? I mean really use it, long hours, enough complexity, for work, freelance... etc. and various aspects of the program with these hardware.. What are your experiences with it so far? Are the drivers stable? Do you get any display glitches or artifacts? Viewport refresh / display problems? How is the real world performance?

    My main concern is I have had really bad experiences with ATI cards (non pro level) on the Mac or PC in the past with any 3D applications, their opengl drivers in the past was really terrible and I always get viewport glitches, things don't redraw correctly, objects would disappear in the viewport when they are still in the scene, wireframes not displaying correctly or have massive slowdowns... etc. From seeing different posts here and there, seems the new ATI cards are fine. Just want to confirm this with other experience users before making my decision on buying.

  2. snouter macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2009
    There is a new quadro, though I think it's $$$

    There is also an 8800GT if you'd prefer Nvidia drivers.
  3. stormtroopar thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 3, 2009
    I understand there are quadro solutions now (or coming) on the Mac Pro, but I don't want to get a Quadro. For the price and performance under osx, its not worth it. A Geforce card is enough to do most work these days and I do use a Geforce card on my PC fine. But on the Mac side, the 4850 / 4870 seems to be a much better performing card than the GT130 that is available. Plus on the Mac side, I am not sure which has better drivers, Nvidia or ATI.

    And from reading various reviews, the Quadro on the Mac side doesn't seem to have much performance advantage over an ATI 4870 card for example. So getting one of these quadro cards is just over priced to me.

    Different reviews I have read give me an idea of the performance I can get with the ATI cards, but the reviews don't go too much into the stability / reliability of the drivers so that's why I want to ask from some real user experiences.

    Btw, I don't think you can get the 8800GT by itself can you? I definitely don't think its even an option to order with a new MacPro. Plus technically, the ATI 4870 should be a lot faster than the 8800GT that getting the Nvidia is sort of point less if I were to get a new system.

  4. -SD- macrumors 6502

    Mar 23, 2009
    Peterborough, UK
    The EVGA GTX 285 1GB is coming out this month too apparently. Bring it.

  5. fredzy macrumors newbie

    Mar 29, 2009

    I received my nehalem 8 core two weeks ago, and work on maya 2009 sp1a since.

    The app doesn't look too buggy until i reach the states of complex scene (a lot of polys)
    My scene began to be unrenderable but through CLI ...

    So i started another scene, and import everything from the old one, and everything works like a charm, one again :)

    I can render through GUI ...

    But i haven't try any fluids / dynamics yet

    It's very hard to telle if the bugs of maya come from the openGL drivers, or from the app directly

    If you want i can make some test for you

  6. snouter macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2009
    You get a a Quadro as much for the drivers as anything. Obviously they are not really that much faster or more powerful than other cards out there, but you are paying for tested drivers.

    8800GT cars are out there, some of the better 2xx cards are coming as well. Again, it's not that you love the 8800GT, but would rather have Nvidia drivers over ATi drivers.

    For this type of question, you will really have to find a Maya forum and ask them what there experiences are.

    I have not had problems modeling in Cinema 4d using MacBook Pro and so forth, but my models are not that complicated or high in poly count.
  7. stormtroopar thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 3, 2009

    Thank you!! This was the type of feedback I was looking for. I assume you have an ATI 4870 in your system. From what you describe, it doesn't sound like a gfx card / driver problem.. but can't really tell for sure just from the post. So I guess you can pretty much work in maya, viewport and various editor interactions, without much issue then it sounds like, is that right?

    Thanks again.
  8. stormtroopar thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 3, 2009
    I am simply trying to see if ATI cards and drivers are good enough these days for 3d work. The cards themselves are capable and for what Apple options provide, the ATI 4870 is a much better option than the GT120 in the MacPro. The Nvidia GTX285 is not out yet and has not been tested so I am not even considering it at this point, not to mention its not going to be cheap. AND it is not going to have any mini display port... so driving a new Apple LED LCD panel is not possible..

    You can check out this review, there are a few benchmark results out there that tells a similar story. On the Mac side, the quadro cards are not getting better results than the ATI 4870, and in some cases, its slower. But the card is a few times more expensive than the ATI card. Basically, on the Mac, until they really optimize their drivers to work much better, getting a Quadro card is probably a waste of money at this point, unless the app you use really takes advantage of the card in OSX.

    Again, my post did not mention about wanting to get a quadro card. I just want to know how good the ATI default options (hence the 4870 / 4850) are with using Maya in reality. Good in terms of stability, reliability, and performance.. Thats all.
  9. stormtroopar thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 3, 2009
    ok, I think I have found the answer I was looking for. Seems like the ATI 4870 works fine with Maya on the Mac Pro and performs great.

    I did a search over at cgtalk and pretty much found the answer over several thread related to maya with the mac pro. They also talk about Mudbox quite a bit using this same card and setup. All seems to work great.

    Here are some links for those interested or want to find out about this too.
  10. fredzy macrumors newbie

    Mar 29, 2009
    Yes, i own this card, and never feld bad about (you know .... regretting the new 285)

    Maya works great ... and has the same kind of "bug" as it has in my ex macBookPro.
    Viewport, UV Edito, Hypershade and all other work very fine ...

    Ok i've also met a lot of problem, but according to me (and my newbie experience), those all came from a problem in my scene ... no driver issue

    I'm still learning maya, and have no regret about this macPro and the 16 rendering core since the sp1a has been released :)

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