How much of a performance upgrade would a 2013 Mac Pro (6.1) give me?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Taustin Powers, Sep 16, 2015.

  1. Taustin Powers macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2005
    #1
    I currently have a Mac Pro 3.1 (2008) 8-Core, 12GB ram and a Radeon HD 4870 (512 MB ram). OS and apps run from an SSD drive, all date is stored on regular hard drives.

    My main uses are regular desktop admin stuff (email, browsing, etc.), some light music recording, and some Adobe CS4 applications (Photoshop, Premiere Pro, Illustrator). None of this on a professional level, just hobbies. It still does all of those things, but some of them could be faster and smoother (looking at video editing, mainly). And after 7 1/2 years with this machine, I'm slowly starting to get that itch. ;)

    If I got a good deal on a lowest-spec Mac Pro 2013 and put 32 gigs of ram into it, would it make a huge difference in performance? Or would I need to spend money on the higher end options (6 Core, D500...) to really make it worth the jump?
     
  2. mikeboss macrumors 65816

    mikeboss

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2009
    Location:
    switzerland
    #2
    for the majority of users what really counts IMHO is the single-thread performance and the SSD. you can expect everything being twice as fast. have a look a the "64-bit Single Core" results -> https://browser.primatelabs.com/mac-benchmarks#3

    apart from being overpriced for what it is and having very limited expandability, I like my nMP. plus, I love it for how quiet it is. but I can't let go of my cheesegrater Mac Pros. 4,1 and 5,1 are still very nice machines if properly upgraded.
     
  3. SoyCapitanSoyCapitan macrumors 68040

    SoyCapitanSoyCapitan

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  4. Taustin Powers thread starter macrumors regular

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    Apr 5, 2005
    #4
    Those benchmarks are sobering. The 4 Core is nowhere near the top of either single or multicore list.

    Would Premiere Pro qualify as a multicore application?
     
  5. teeck2000 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #5
    Have you considered a Retina iMac? Seems like it could work for you as well or better, and it's plenty fast for what you need to do, and the single core speed is the fastest for any mac...
     
  6. SoyCapitanSoyCapitan macrumors 68040

    SoyCapitanSoyCapitan

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    Jul 4, 2015
    #6
    Yes it is. The 4 core is beaten by an iMac 5K in some tests. See barefeats.com for a good breakdown.
     
  7. filmak macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 21, 2012
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    between earth and heaven
    #7
    Going from a mac Pro to an iMac imho is a downgrade in many ways, thermals/throttling, noise, longevity, expansion/less ports/ less monitors, all in one / failed one part throw them all concept, and the display is still 8 bit.

    Of course just for office work it is a very nice machine with a brilliant 5k display.
     
  8. filmak macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 21, 2012
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    between earth and heaven
    #8
    I would like to add that if you are using vm under parallels etc you will see a great difference in their performance.
     
  9. OS6-OSX macrumors 6502a

    OS6-OSX

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    California
    #9
    Look at this video
    It will show you how PP uses CUDA. As a "hobbyist", before you spend any money on an nMP look into getting an nVidia card. Read about CUDA and the Mercury engine. 12GB is not much ram for video editing and this is where CUDA comes into play if you have the correct card.
     
  10. UniversalWolf macrumors newbie

    UniversalWolf

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    #10
    I don't know whether or not this will help you, but I'm in a very similar situation. I've had my 3.1 for 71/2 years (officially passing the longevity of the PowerComputing tower I owned in the 90s that lasted 7 years before it died). It's amazing, but I've had almost no problems with my cheese grater in all that time.

    Recently my Windows drive started giving me some subtle indications that it may start failing sometime soon, and for the first time in a long time I thought about buying a new computer.

    After thinking about it for a few days I decided to put a couple hundred bucks into it to keep it going. I start it up and OSX runs great. It's still fast and responsive. I'm going to add more RAM and a new drive and let it ride, hopefully for a couple more years. I just have no real complaints about it, and none of the buying options available at this particular time really capture my interest.
     
  11. prowlmedia, Sep 16, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2015

    prowlmedia macrumors 68000

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    Jan 26, 2010
    Location:
    London
    #11
    That's CS 5 Dude! Way more advanced now All adobe's GPU acceleration features work on Cuda and OpenCL now* You ge the option for either in apps when you turn on GPU acceleration. I will admit that some GPU rendering is faster in CUDA. but does depend on what you are doing. I've found Open CL more stable though. Open CL on the D700 in the nMP is incredibly fast.

    Bar the ray tracing GPU rendering for 3d in after effects which is Nvidia Cuda only. Though that may change in the future.

    I have a similar machine and the nMP is a beast and hopefully a new one is coming.... BUT you have to get the D700 graphics card upgrade. The 300 is pointless and 500 only ok. They are both a bit long in the tooth already in graphics chip terms.

    The 4 core is actually the fastest for actual day to day use over the 6 or 12 core... but slower at output rendering. Single Processor speed slows down the more Cores you have... the sweet spot is the 6 Core with D700 and as much Ram and Storage as you can afford.

    But I am hoping that october will bring an update...
     
  12. OS6-OSX macrumors 6502a

    OS6-OSX

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2004
    Location:
    California
    #12
    My point exactly! If a 5,1 can play layers of footage to that extent with CUDA, why is he questioning the performance of PP with the AMD card? Things have changed since CS5 but footage is footage! A few years ago I downloaded CS5 and was able to play R3D, Alexa and any other footage. This was on my 3,1 with only 14GB of ram at the time. My Quadro 4000 has only a laughable amount of CUDA cores but worked better than "ram" software mode.
    All this to say, as a "hobbyist" the chance of him needing to play 4-6 trks of R3D Dragon from a multicam shoot is nonexistent. The suggestion of keeping the cMP over an nMP is based on him not using apps such as Maya, Blender, AutoCAD etc. If that was the case then the 3,1 would be pointless.
    9GB.jpg
     
  13. orph, Sep 17, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2015

    orph macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #13
    First thing, will all your apps work on osx10.10 ? (with CS3 i was stuck on 0sx10.6 for a long time)
    always worth checking to see if something will brake.

    Id have a hard look at a Mac Min, smaller quieter cheaper and faster than your macpro, spend the extra cash on a new display or two + a USB 3 HD

    your using Cs 4 which is mainly only using 1-2Cpu's, CUDA is not what it's made up to be, unless you regally do the few tasks that use it (& you dont or you'd have a different GPU) + open CL is not on CS4 so ~~ kind of mute.
    for normal video editing make shore you have a good drive setup in your mac pro ie .
    os drive
    media drive
    scratch drive
    export drive (thats a swanky extra)

    (not partitions, different physical drives unless your working just SSD's)
    RAID is not for beginners, and not a backup

    PS if you do want a new mac pro/min you may need to buy external storage as the SSD's tend to be smaller (+ you cant have 4 drives)
     

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