Chance that future Mac Pros will have Nvidia GPU options?

Demigod Mac

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 25, 2008
788
235
I decided to upgrade my 5,1 with a 780 GTX instead of get a nMP. Part of the reason is that I much prefer Team Green to Team Red.

I'm sure OpenCL vs CUDA is a crucial piece of the puzzle; including an Nvidia GPU in Mac Pros at this stage would only be helpful to CUDA, which Apple clearly does not want to do. Perhaps Apple would warm up to Nvidia after a few AMD-equipped Mac Pro refresh cycles firmly establish OpenCL as the de facto GPGPU platform on OS X?
 

chfilm

macrumors 68030
Nov 15, 2012
2,819
1,590
Berlin
Maybe.. I don't know I would prefer nvidia gpus right now as well, as they just seem to be a bit faster in general at the moment.

But I'm pretty sure this was a political decision, just like back in the day with flash, to break the CUDA monopole.
I read on the adobe forums some posts bei some official adobe guys that said they don't like their software to be bound to some specific hardware and am looking to resolve this in the future by leaning towards open CL..

So I think apple wanted to give them a little push or something :)
 

Donar

macrumors 6502
Jul 12, 2008
356
44
Germany
I think they would only switch to nvidia in the future if nvidia's OpenCL performance was superior to AMD.
 

riggles

macrumors 6502
Dec 2, 2013
256
0
Apple doesn't mind using a technology as long as it fits their needs, and then dropping it flat if they feel they've become dependent on it. They take pride in both saying no and controlling their own destiny. Love it or hate it, that's just how they do things.

In this case, it seems to me they've made a clear statement that OpenCL is the way forward for Mac apps, not CUDA. So until NVIDIA gets on board with that by bringing their OpenCL support up, I doubt we'll see an NVIDIA option from Apple (or NVIDIA for that matter).

I don't think Apple cares how popular CUDA is. Flash was hugely popular when the iPhone launched. But it didn't fit in with Apple's priorities. They are very focused that way.
 

Sun Baked

macrumors G5
May 19, 2002
14,859
57
Nvidia has some work to do on the Open-CL drivers, and making sure SLI works over the PCI bus.

However, cost will be an issue with Apple since they are dual GPUs, and how well Nvidia does on performance per watt, with the lowered power and heat budget on the Mac Pro -- the extra power sockets are gone.

So would the next high end Nvidia card work well when downclocked to draw half the power...
 

beaker7

Cancelled
Mar 16, 2009
920
5,003
Apple doesn't mind using a technology as long as it fits their needs, and then dropping it flat if they feel they've become dependent on it. They take pride in both saying no and controlling their own destiny. Love it or hate it, that's just how they do things.

In this case, it seems to me they've made a clear statement that OpenCL is the way forward for Mac apps, not CUDA. So until NVIDIA gets on board with that by bringing their OpenCL support up, I doubt we'll see an NVIDIA option from Apple (or NVIDIA for that matter).

I don't think Apple cares how popular CUDA is. Flash was hugely popular when the iPhone launched. But it didn't fit in with Apple's priorities. They are very focused that way.
I'm more inclined to think that AMD just simply gave them a much better deal out of desperation to prop up the FirePro brand, which has an extremely small market share of the overall workstation and large scale GPU compute segment.

If it was a religious statement on OpenCL vs CUDA they'd be using AMD GPU's instead of nVidia in the rest of the line.
 

riggles

macrumors 6502
Dec 2, 2013
256
0
If it was a religious statement on OpenCL vs CUDA they'd be using AMD GPU's instead of nVidia in the rest of the line.
Well, I think TDP constraints have kept NVIDIA GPUs included in this round of fall updates. The Mac Pro is significantly made of up video editors so, from Apple's perspective, it's the best place to start implementing OpenCL and showing its power. I'm wondering how long until the MacBook Pro adds (or switches back to) AMD GPUs. As soon as battery life isn't negatively effected is my guess.
 
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