MBP 17 Unibody: What's the advantage of discrete graphics?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by miguelito, Feb 22, 2009.

  1. miguelito macrumors member

    miguelito

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2009
    #1
    If you're using Lightroom or Photoshop, what's the advantage of using the discrete graphics processor?
     
  2. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2008
    Location:
    North Korea
    #2
    Not much, Photoshop is a processor intensive application, it hardly uses the graphics card at all, the discrete 9600 graphics card is mainly beneficial for Games and Video Work.
     
  3. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #3
    I dunno about LightRoom, but I know that Aperture basically lives on top of the GPU. So the better the GPU the faster and smoother Aperture will work.
     
  4. Mark2000 macrumors regular

    Mark2000

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2007
    #4
    That's not true anymore. Photoshop CS4 supposedly uses the GPU extensively for many operations:

    So, what can you do with general-purpose GPU (GPGPU) acceleration in Photoshop? We saw the presenter playing with a 2 GB, 442 megapixel image like it was a 5 megapixel image on an 8-core Skulltrail system. Changes made through image zoom and through a new rotate canvas tool were applied almost instantly. Another impressive feature was the import of a 3D model into Photoshop, adding text and paint on a 3D surface and having that surface directly rendered with the 3D models' reflection map.

    There was also a quick demo of a Photoshop 3D accelerated panorama, which is one of the most time-consuming tasks within Photoshop these days. The usability provided through the acceleration capabilities is enormous and we are sure that digital artists will appreciate the ability to work inside a spherical image and fix any artifacts on-the-fly.
     
  5. miguelito thread starter macrumors member

    miguelito

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2009
    #5
    Cool. I was thinking mostly color accuracy, but you raise good points.

    In this vein, I imagine you'd want to have two different color profiles for each graphics processor, no? (calibrating with eye-one display 2, btw).

    Thx.
     
  6. TuffLuffJimmy macrumors G3

    TuffLuffJimmy

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    Apr 6, 2007
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #6
    I don't think so... The color profile is monitor specific not GPU specific.
     
  7. ayeying macrumors 601

    ayeying

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2007
    Location:
    Yay Area, CA
    #7
    Yep. Both GFX cards are more than capable of displaying all colors. CPU/Ram is the main thing you should look out for all of these programs (Aperture/LightRoom/Photoshop). The GPU really shouldn't be a top priority. (not saying it shouldn't matter)
     
  8. bay2sacto macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2008
    #8
    Photoshop CS4 will definitely benefit from the discrete GPU. I've seen a definite speed boost doing some things which take advantage of OpenGL acceleration. Now it doesn't speed up filters, but there's a noticible difference in interface response when zooming, rotating, etc. That being said the OpenGL feature in PS CS4 is very dependent on the driver and I've seen some weird "glitches" with the latest one Apple has for my 15" late '08 MBP. I'm not alone in this. Don't know if Apple has shipped newer drivers with the 17". The last ones they released were from the January Nvidia update. As far as Lightroom, the last few times I used it I had the discrete GPU on. I'll have to do a test to see if there's any real difference. I would suspect no as Photoshop is the only one of the two to take advantage of the GPU. If you're using CS3 though there really isn't a difference other than having a bit more RAM available due to the 9400 only being able to use shared system RAM.
     
  9. pixpixpix macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2005
    #9
    Photoshop 6 GPU usage

    From Adobe's site: Photoshop CS6 GPU FAQ

     

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