Got sick of waiting for the new Mac Pro so...

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by atrox321, Nov 25, 2013.

  1. atrox321 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2012
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #1
    Actually, the new Mac Pro won't be able to help us at all, because we need CUDA driven cards to do what we do. The AMD/ATIcards are completely useless to us.

    We have started doing GPU rendering using the Octane Renderer out of Cinema 4D. Amazing realistic results. We bought 2 giant PC's with 4 Titan cards each in them, but we are Mac people and wanted to be able to work on our Macs using Octane at decent speeds.

    So, i present to you... 8 Core Mac Pro with 2 Titans in it. These cards are Plug n Play now with Mavericks as far as compatibility is concerned. The only issue i have seen is there is no apple logo on startup anymore and translucent menu sometimes acts odd (i turn it off anyway). You do need an external power source to run the Titans, but this machine (and one other just like it) is a monster for GPU rendering (and yes, even games)

    [​IMG]

    and here are the two PC's if anyone cares. Win8 is just dumb, but these machines work great, even if they look ridiculous. And don't let anyone tell you all PCs are cheap. These things were $11k a piece. Yes they are faster than our Macs at just about everything, but Win8 is just disgusting to work on after being a Mac nerd for the past 28 years. So, i only use these for when i have to render something.

    [​IMG]
     
  2. TyPod macrumors 68000

    TyPod

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    Nov 2, 2006
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    And Yourself?
    #2
    So cool. That thing is a freakin beast. How much memory is in the MP?
     
  3. slughead macrumors 68040

    slughead

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    #3
    Is the 2nd Titan in slot 3? Doesn't that keep it stuck in 4x?
     
  4. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #4
    17 GB on the Macs. 32 in the PC's. Titans are 6GB each.

    Another thing. I wanted to space the cards apart for heat reasons, which meant i had to put one Titan in the 4X slot,but first i benchmarked it with both in the 16x slots. The benchmark was exactly the same in the 16x and 4x, so i left them spaced apart. However, you need to hook your display up to the one in the 16x slot. Very odd

    ----------

    ha. weird, i just answered that question. great minds...
     
  5. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

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    #5
    Yep the PC towers look gross, but a pair of silverstone tower cases would have given them a Mac Pro ish look.

    Why didn't you install Windows 7 instead of 8 cos as a desktop OS it's far more useable than 8.1!
     
  6. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
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    Rochester, NY
    #6
    we don't use 8.1. i have heard horror stories. We are still on 8 and have it set so we never have to see the stupid metro interface. They came preloaded with W8 and we were fine with that. W8, W7, XP, 95... it's all ****** to my eyes

    As far as the towers go, we had a gaming company called Digital Storm build them for us. gaming Rigs and GPU rigs are essentially the same thing, only GPU rigs have more GPUs than what are necessary to play games. DS had only a few options and this case was the only one they would use for our systems. 4 Titans gets pretty hot, so water cooling and a case that has a gazillion fans is necessary. Great company though. Quick build and they test the systems to their max for 3 days straight before shipping.
     
  7. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

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    #7
    8.1 is a big improvement cos it polishes the turd a lot, the biggest pain is updating the bloody thing and making sure the system is malware free before upgrading. There's been plenty of rubbish MS OS but 7 certainly isn't one of them, I'd say it's the most comparable to a Mac OS there has ever been and I've been using both platforms since 1988!
     
  8. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
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    Rochester, NY
    #8
    good to know. Unfortunately, 8.1 is not compatible with our renderer at the moment.
     
  9. handsome pete macrumors 68000

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    Aug 15, 2008
    #9
    He's talking about 7.
     
  10. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
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    Rochester, NY
    #10
    I understand. we are not going back though. Stability is not an issue with 8 as far as I'm concerned. We've had no issues with it. He mentioned going to 8.1 would make the system better, but we can't do that right now until our software is updated.
     
  11. echoout macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, Texas
    #11
    Similar setup here. Use my 12-core MP with Titan for setting up Octane and making creative decisions, the send it to my 16-core z820 with 780 Ti for rendering. I use Windows 7 but it's still tedious for me.
     
  12. Gav Mack macrumors 68020

    Gav Mack

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    #12
    Yep best to wait till it's totally stable before updating. You have to run windows update time and time again till nothing is left before the 8.1 appears by magic or random in the windows store. It will improve it under the hood and has a boot to desktop option. Start menu reviver a good replacement for the metro start if you cant stand it as much as I do and the clients I know who are stuck using it.
     
  13. dotsfilmes macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2013
    Location:
    Salvador - Bahia - Brasil
    #13
    What PSU are you using? Do you leave it open all the time? Does the external PSU connect to the internal to syncronize, or just turn them both on manualy?

    Planning to put a Titan also!

    Thanks!
     
  14. Celedral macrumors 6502

    Celedral

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    Los Angeles
    #14
    Nice system. I too resort to PCs when needing more power.
     
  15. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #15
    Thermaltake 1200 watt external. comes with a bunch of different modular cables. It's completely separate from the internal PSU. You have to bridge two of the pins on the main cable that comes off the PSU for it to work, but it works well. No problems at all and has enough power to power just about anything.

    We leave the door off at all times, because the cables won't fit through the one empty slot in the back.Not optimal, but we found with 2 fans (one blowing in the front and one directly on the cards, we have no problems with air flow. I have accidentally left the fans off when rendering with no problems, but better safe than sorry. I doubt it would be an issue with just one Titan.

    Yesterday i did another test. i just wanted to be absolutely sure, so i ran a couple benchmarks with the second card in it's current 4x location. Then I moved that card into the other 16x location and ran those same tests. No difference in the slightest. It got super hot with both cards in the 16x position since there is no air flow above the first card at that point, so i moved it back to the 4x.

    ----------

    I have never seen the Metro interface. Digital Storm put a start menu app on and it goes straight to desktop. Metro makes me puke
     
  16. velocityg4 macrumors 68040

    velocityg4

    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2004
    Location:
    Georgia
    #16
    Honestly if these are just used for rendering I would never update unless you update your rendering software I would even turn off Windows update. If these aren't being used to surf the internet, get e-mail, &c. Their sole purpose in life being to render and they are stable. Then any updates offer a greater potential risk than benefit.

    You never know what update may cause a stability issue. Even worse every update makes changes to the registry. You never know if the change will result in a crash. The crash can be from a change in the registry or the registry simply being corrupted when being saved.

    Even in day to day operations some changes are made to the registry. At least you can minimize this.
     
  17. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
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    Rochester, NY
    #17
    yup. we have update turned off (still somehow mages to annoy us from time to time. Guerilla update tactics. ha)
     
  18. beaker7 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    #18
    I'd recommend looking at an external PCI-E box for the mac pro's if you want to, you know, close them.

    I have a netstor NA255a with 4 Titans in it. Bought an extra interface card so I can swap it from my Mac Pro to PC in about 2 minutes.

    http://www.netstor.com.tw/_03/03_02.php?MTEx
     
  19. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #19
    That is a way to do it for sure. Our way is a bit cheaper of course by a lot. Just not as tidy looking and you can only use 2 cards inside the Mac
     
  20. DJenkins macrumors 6502

    DJenkins

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    Apr 22, 2012
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #20
    Good work, I like seeing people take things beyond the status quo dictated by Apple.

    Although I wish there weren't these ridiculous hurdles just to try and play catch-up to the PC market.

    Did you consider having a hackintosh built? You could have your four Titans running in OSX - and even boot back into windows just to squeeze a bit more power for rendering. I am guessing reliability of the Mac Pro was a priority though?
     
  21. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
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    Rochester, NY
    #21
    We do pretty much all work on the Macs and then render on the PC's. Hackintosh was an option, but decided it wasn't really worth it for something that is pretty much just going to render. It's faster to work on the PC's by far, but I'm just more comfortable in the Mac environment, which is by no means slow at all.
     
  22. prowlmedia macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Location:
    London
    #22
    Good job they are working on Open CL octane then :)

    All Adobes stuff works on Open CL too now, which is good.

    I am wondering if they will allow Nvidia Card in the nMP... but we still don't know if they are even replaceable yet!

    ----------

    Out of interest do you just install team render on the PCs and just hit render?
     
  23. twoodcc macrumors P6

    twoodcc

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Location:
    Right side of wrong
    #23
    thanks for sharing! glad to see i'm not the only one with an external power supply on my old mac pro. except mine is a 2006 mac pro that can't run mavericks, so i'm stuck in windows. but that's ok. cool setup! :cool:
     
  24. atrox321 thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 19, 2012
    Location:
    Rochester, NY
    #24
    Sorry for the late response. As far as i know they are NOT working on a non-CUDA version of Octane. No OpenCL support has been announced.

    As of maybe 2 weekends ago, Octane for C4D got Team Render Support. And it's glorious. However, each machine ding the render has to have the full standalone app and the C4D plugin for it to work. They have no special licensing for render nodes. But having 12 Titans attack a file at once is great,
     
  25. prowlmedia macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2010
    Location:
    London
    #25
    I have my spys :) and from the official FAQ.

    I'd like to use Octane Render, but I don't have a Nvidia video card.
    Are OpenCL compatible cards (AMD and Intel GPUs) supported?

    "No, OpenCL is currently not as mature as CUDA. As OpenCL matures, it is planned to be supported which will allow GPUs from AMD and Intel to be used with Octane Render. Currently, Octane Render requires a CUDA enabled Nvidia video card to be installed."

    http://render.otoy.com/faqs.php

    The titan rig sounds like a great way of farming!

    You guys got a reel?
     

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