Is it possible to buy external processor(s) to speed up my Mac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ZirusBlackheart, Feb 27, 2015.

  1. ZirusBlackheart macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2015
    Hay all :)

    Is it possible to buy external processor(s) to speed up my Mac?
    This would be a lot cheaper than forking out for a new Mac basically.
    I was thinking lightning might be finally quick enough connector to make this possible :)
  2. 0007776 Suspended


    Jul 11, 2006
    No it wouldn't work even if someone tried to make one. If you want to speed up your computer without buying a new one try adding more RAM if you have a model where that is upgradable, and if you don't already have a SSD replace your HDD with a SSD.
  3. Tumbleweed666 macrumors 68000


    Mar 20, 2009
    Near London, UK.
    No, and even if it was why do you think it would speed it up ?
    What is it you are looking to speed up? The mac overall ? Or a specific app that's slow ?
  4. joema2 macrumors 65816


    Sep 3, 2013
    Yes this is definitely possible for outboard GPU processing via Thunderbolt:

    However even then it is expensive and IMO not generally worthwhile. Outboard GPU is "easier" since the app interfaces via OpenCL, OpenGL or CUDA API, not direct manipulation of the hardware. Thus the app can be insulated from the card interface, location, and communications details.

    The outboard processor must have a card cage, substantial power supply, fan, etc -- IOW it is nearly a complete stand-alone computer. This increases cost so it's often not worth it.

    Outboard CPU processing is much harder since it's running threads directly not via some interface. Each core must have direct access to common memory and any bus (even Thunderbolt) is far too slow.

    The only exception would be loosely-coupled multiprocessing where the operating system is aware of the offboard CPUs and lower-speed access to them. This is commonly done in clustered servers and supercomputers, but the entire software and hardware system must be specifically designed for this.
  5. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    Before you go out and buy Ram sticks, check your activity monitor during high workloads. If the graph is green buying more Ram will be a waste of $$. If it is yellow or even red, then go for the memory ugrade.
    An ssd is always a great idea!
  6. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    One does not simply add in an external processor...
  7. Meister Suspended


    Oct 10, 2013
    What exactly are you doing with your make. What apps or processes are slow?
  8. ZirusBlackheart thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2015
    Pro-Tools, the error i get, when i do get an error is always that my CPU is too slow so it is this that i am trying to sort :)

    Ill keep an eye on the Activity Monitor but it doesn't happen often, just annoying when it does, im thinking the RM idea might be a good one though since Im running on 8gb.

    And yeah, its a shame the idea of an ext cpu is so far fetched then :-/

    thx for ya help everyone! :-D
  9. ha1o2surfer macrumors 6502

    Sep 24, 2013
    thunderbolt is not anything special. a CPU needs hundreds of GB/s bandwidth. lol
  10. touchUpInside macrumors member


    May 4, 2014
    UTC -07:00
    You are in a situation where you can speed up the power cord from the current system by attaching a new computer to it. Happens to everyone.


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