is 6 core still better choice for rendering than 8 core?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Gloor, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. Gloor macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 19, 2007
    #1
    Guys,
    I keep reading that 6 core is better choice over the 8 core one but do you think it is true for rendering as well? I have 8core 2008 and I'm debating whether or not to get the new 8 core one.
    My main usage is Maya and rendering is mainly mental ray.
    The reason why I want to buy the new one is that the 5870 gpu as it would speed up my viewport drastically over the 8800gt I have now.

    I could just get the card but I think I can get the new machine with applecare and 5870 for about £500 than the price I could sell my 2008 so I think that is why I think it might be worth it to replace the whole machine.

    So, is it really better to go for 6 core? I am a bit sceptical as I would have 2 cores less. I understand that the clock speed is higher, but still. Aren't 2 cores more still better choice for rendering?
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #2
    8x2.4GHz: 19.2GHz
    6x3.33GHz: 19.98GHz

    6-core provides more raw processing power. However, the difference is fairly small and the good thing about 8-core is that you can upgrade it to 12-core later on. That's something you should think about.

    One option is to buy 8-core from refurb store and then buy 6-core CPUs from eBay to make it 12-core. It costs more but provides a lot more processing power. X5650 goes for around 900$ on eBay. E5520 goes for around 400$. That means the total price to upgrade 8-core to 12-core is around 1000$. Not bad IMO.
     
  3. Gloor thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #3
    well, I think I could get 12 core for about £3000 but I think its out of my price range especially when I can sell my 2008 octo for about £1600. £1400 is a bit too much for just extra 4 cores especially when I don't do only rendering as my main thing.
    The only thing that is slowing me down at the moment is GPU and maybe ram (8gb seems low sometimes). But, my system still has apple care so thats why I am thinking of selling it and get the new 8 core with 5870 for about £2100 with apple care. More peace of mind I think.

    Would you agree?
    :)
     
  4. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #4
    What other things are you going to do? 2.4GHz isn't very good deal because of its low frequency (poor single-threaded performance). 6-core is only little more but is a beast in single-threaded apps plus it provides more raw CPU power than 8-core does.

    The only reason I would get 8-core is if you are going to upgrade the CPUs fairly soon. If you aren't, then just get the 6-core as it's faster.
     
  5. Gloor thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #5
    I do animation, gaming and rendering (rendering is only when a project reaches final so its not that often)

    Those are my main things I use the computer for. I think that only rendering really needs raw power from the CPU
    Animation is about GPU
    and gaming GPU too

    Everything else is minor so not worth mentioning
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #6
    I'm sure animation and gaming use some CPU. The issue with them is that they are often poorly multithreaded, thus the frequency matters. I would get the 6-core, it's faster in pretty much ALL apps. IMO the 8-core is a bad deal because it sucks at single-threaded tasks and isn't much cheaper than 6-core.
     
  7. Gloor thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    hmm, then perhaps its not worth it at all, right?

    When can we expect another update? 1 year? longer?
     
  8. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #8
    Yeah, possibly about a year. Depends when suitable CPUs come. The only thing we know is H2 2011.

    If you can get a new 6-core for only 500£, then I would switch. If it is more, then I would think twice. Your current one is just fine, get a new GPU and make it fly
     
  9. Gloor thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Apr 19, 2007
    #9
    thank you Hellhammer, I'll see what the discount etc. is and then will decide. Maybe if I get the 12 core it might be too much now but it will be a good investment and great resale value, right?
     
  10. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #10
    12-core is noticeably faster than 6- or 8-core. That would speed up your rendering a lot. As I said, one option is to get 8-core and then upgrade the CPUs by yourself to save some money.

    If you can get it for good price, then pull the trigger.
     
  11. Gloor thread starter macrumors 6502a

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