New Mac Pro: Only 64BG Ram ...?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Trailerman, Oct 22, 2013.

  1. Trailerman macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2010
    #1
    Am I the only one who finds this a little 'behind the curve'?

    I have 64GB in my 2010 Mac Pro and was going to ramp it up if I bought the new Mac Pro, because I'm getting near it's limits (musician/composer - lots of sample streaming going on). I was thinking 96GB minimum, and lots of desktops now handle 128GB no problem.

    Am I perhaps missing some feature of the new architecture which makes big RAM specs redundant? Can it perhaps access the superfast SSD/PCIe drive thingies super fast, so that it doesn't need as much RAM ....? Can anybody who has a clue perhaps explain why this isn't a disaster for the RAM hungry amongst us?

    I want this to be my big 5 year DAW investment for 2013, so I'm just praying Apple haven't dropped one.

    Many thanks

    Jules
     
  2. spaz8 macrumors 6502

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    Mar 3, 2007
    #2
    Well one "big" feature that they mention with Mavericks was Ram compression. Hard to know how well it works in the wild. I am used to a compress/decompress being a bottleneck.

    Anyways.. apparently 4 GB or ram will feel like 6 GB.. so in theory 64 could feel like 96.. not holding my breath though.

    Or I guess specifically in the keynote they said 6GB of memory could fit into 4 GB of space. So 6/4=1.5 1.5*64=96
     
  3. Umbongo macrumors 601

    Umbongo

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    #3
    I'd put money on it supporting 128GB with 4x32GB DIMMs. Apple probably just couldn't get them at 1866MHz yet.
     
  4. ssgbryan macrumors 6502

    ssgbryan

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    #4
    Architecture isn't going to change 3rd party software.

    And as far as Ram compression, well, I am old enough to remember the last time that nonsense was tried. It will end badly
     
  5. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    Sep 21, 2010
    #5
    Third party RAM compression software was basically a hoax.

    I can't imagine Apple trying to commit such back-alley type scams, so I'll assume for now they've come up with something new and give them the benefit of the doubt.

    That being said, I don't understand how it could possibly work. Because after you decompress the RAM, where do you keep the data... in RAM, right? Makes no sense to me.
     
  6. DanielCoffey macrumors 65816

    DanielCoffey

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    #6
    Wasn't the Apple RAM compression to do with only compressing background app usage?
     
  7. thedarkhorse macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    The ram compression is probably more about squeezing out the most for the consumer with 4-8gb or less, Pro apps that use dozens of GBs of ram probably won't like it or benefit much.
     
  8. wallysb01 macrumors 65816

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    #8
    I agree that this is the only place where that even kinda makes sense, but even then, how is compressing/uncompressing once you need some parts of that RAM better than just writing/reading to your PCIe flash storage? If this was 5200 RPM HDD, I might have a different idea, but PCIe flash storage should be fast enough to keep that extra couple hundred MBs of less used material that you might ideally want in RAM if you had 16GBs instead of 8.
     
  9. DesterWallaboo macrumors 6502

    DesterWallaboo

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    #9
    I'm willing to bet that Crucial, Otherworld Computing, et al will be offering 128GB options for the Mac Pro out of the gate.

    EDIT:
    Interesting….. I just visited a few different RAM vendors and the largest they offer in DDR3 is 32GB @ 4x8GB sticks.
     
  10. Umbongo macrumors 601

    Umbongo

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    #10
    It's not in great supply (as in many vendors), because it isn't in great demand. Kingston are the only non-DRAM manufacturer that I have seen with DIMMs available.

    Crucial/Micron (Crucial are Micron's retail brand):
    http://www.crucial.com/store/partspecs.aspx?IMODULE=CT32G3ELSLQ41339
    http://www.memory4less.com/m4l_itemdetail.aspx?itemid=1465221767&partno=MT72JSZS4G72PZ-1G4

    Samsung, Hynix and Kingston can be found at Superbiiz (and memory4less, but they are more expensive):
    http://www.superbiiz.com/query.php?...rom+current+results&ob=r&myanchor=#displaytop
     
  11. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    #11
    Here is some info from Apple

    The thing is that it does not matter how amazing and efficient this is because you will still be bottlenecked by the speed of the storage. Even PCIe-based flash storage is about 10x-20x slower than 1866 MHz RAM, based on rough calculations.
     
  12. ElectronGuru macrumors 65816

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    #12
    Yeah, this is a minimum 5 year machine, options will open up with time.
     
  13. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

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    Oct 25, 2008
    #13
    I had to smile upon seeing this "exciting innovation" of RAM compression. This is nothing new. In fact, the use was around during DOS PC days. Just glad that sometimes a great notion finds its way back in favour.

    Of course, with TB2, one can off set limited ram with fast "scratch" drives for certain apps. This would help with the limited RAM.

    Darn shame that the Mac (mini) Pro wants 3 grand for a quad set up. They would have done well (and still profit) if 3 grand was for a hex instead. Notice that it costs 1 grand more for a hex. Apple leads the way with interesting devices with prices driven by pure greed and they can depend on us Apple folks to empty our wallets.
     
  14. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    #14
    QEMM? Man, that brings back memories.
     
  15. spoonie1972 macrumors 6502a

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    Toronto
    #15
    i'd sooner install x5690 x2 chips in a 2009/2010 than go this route (despite logic 9's shortcoming on core usage)

    if you're using pt / raydats / madi stuff, you'll want the PCIe connection for the lowest latencies possible; especially in a master-slave machine situation. Also - we're supposed to buy into TB2 being better - when it will be slower, force us to buy adapters/interfaces just so all our pt/ua cards will keep working? poppycock.

    i know that composers are not given a whiff of a thought when big companies are product planning, but - the lack of a pcie interface (or even a apple-proprietary - they love those! - plug to a pcie-host-bay so magma can continue to charge crazy money) really takes the wind out of my interest in this new cylinder.

    Best luck. I'd get more ram and upgrade the CPU's - if your stuff is working now, and you're meeting insane client deadlines, how will that change in 6 months - a year - two - three?

    I'm just bitter. I was hoping for more.
     
  16. MacVidCards Suspended

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    #16
    I'm pretty sure I've got an old copy if Ram Doubler I can sell.
     
  17. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

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    Mar 10, 2009
    #17
    But is it. Apple's "Tech Specs" pages are increasingly "Marketing Spec" pages. They don't outline what is technical capabilities. They outline what Apple is selling in the online/retail Apple stores. It used to be that there were developer notes that went along with hardware and the "tech specs" web pages took there cues from them. Now it is basically about packaging the specs to sell.


    Wait till Crucial/OWC/etc 3rd party memory vendors test and actually work out what the specs actually are. You'll likely be able to crack 64GB either this year or next. Far more a function of more reasonably cost DIMMs becoming available.


    Far more a budget constrained than RAM hungry issue. What is missing is the "cheaper" path to 128GB by using 8 ( or 16) DIMMs slots and much relatively smaller capacity DIMMs.

    ----------

    Yes it does since one reason why the inactive memory is being compressed is so that it does not have to be paged out to disk. That should leave more disk I/O bandwidth to actually moving user data as opposed to OS virtual paging maintenance.

    Some issue on the read side. It is effectively a bigger cache if cycle through the same apps and data at various time during the day.

    You right in that it won't rocket propel at modestly sized set of 3GB Photoshop files, but it should have impact on apps that aren't dominated by above average size data sets transport factors. ( there are lots of "housekeepig" daemons and apps that are running on normal OS X instances ).
     
  18. AidenShaw macrumors P6

    AidenShaw

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    #18
    HP can get them....
     

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  19. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

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    Mar 10, 2009
    #19
    It isn't so much "Pro" apps but apps which use large amounts of already compressed data. Loading/massaging of JPG/MP3/H264 data and the compression mechanism has very little to latch onto. Likewise, apps which keep large amounts of encrypted data in memory ( decrypting snippets as needed ).

    However, if have 32GB of memory and can squeeze in another 1-2GB that should be more of a good outcome for those folks than bad. The question hindges more so on whether can actually do any compression at all when shuffling that kind of bulk.
     
  20. theSeb, Oct 22, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013

    theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

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    #20
    You are correct, if this happens in the background at the right time without impacting current activities too much.

    Back on topic...

    I don't think Apple did this just for the old Mac Pro.
     
  21. drmyfore macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2013
    #21
    Well, let me show you my Workstation.

    Click this link, show the big pic
    http://i887.photobucket.com/albums/ac80/drmyforever/CSTT_zpsb29bf314.png~original

    [​IMG]

    The pic is at the time that I only install 4 dimms, and now I have installed 8 dimms which 16G DDR3 1866 REG ECC X 8 = 128G
     
  22. vincebio macrumors 6502a

    vincebio

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    Jun 27, 2005
    Location:
    Glasgow
    #22

    right, can you please post a screengrab of your audio DAW running because i would love to know what you are using that eats up 64gb ram...:confused:

    Ive seen Ableton and Logic absolutely battered to death by intensive plugs like Diva, Omnisphere and LuSH101 with 16gb or ram and its been solid....
     
  23. spoonie1972 macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 17, 2012
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    Toronto
    #23
    any orchestra template can eat into 64gb easily- especially when you start adding incidentals like the whole heavyocity collection or audiobro/cinesamples +8dio bits etc on top, never mind soft-synths. it's not so much about processing power, but about how much you want accessible at any instant. why bother looking for a legno string, when you can have EVERYTHING ready to go?

    i'd call them extreme situations - but when running an A-B rig it makes sense to treat a machine like a giant sampler - it's just ready to go, so when logic crashes on your "A" machine, you dont have to reload anything - it's just midi-over-lan going to your "B" machine. when you have deadlines, silly setups like this matter. I do agree that most of the time, 16gb can cover most things.
     
  24. Trailerman thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2010
    #24
    Vince

    As Spoonie articulated, using up 64GB Ram is very common with any kind of decent sized template. In our case, this is just one system out of three in the studio, which are interlinked with Vienna Ensemble Pro. The system in question is our Logic machine. Logic Pro X is running about 15GB of samples, and we have another 46GB in Vienna Ensemble Pro on this system. And that's with Kontakt 5's preload buffer set at 18Kb, which is pushing things - it should ideally be set much higher if you're streaming a lot of voices, but that would eat more RAM.

    This rig really needs 96GB for now, and will most likely need 128GB within 12-18 months.

    We also have a Windows 7 machine which hosts most of our orchestral libraries (again in Vienna Ensemble Pro - streaming to the main system via ethernet). It has 96GB installed, 80GB is in use. And then because network load becomes a limiting factor if everything is hosted on one system, we have a third rig (an identical Mac Pro but with 32GB RAM) which just hosts our Vienna Instruments libraries and runs ProTools HDX for mixing.

    Do we really need all this for any one project ...? Of course not. Do we benefit from having a huge template at our disposal, and are there workflow and scheduling gains from working this way? Absolutely.

    Back to the matter in hand. Apple seem to have discarded some fundamental specification principals for the sake of a cool design. No PCI based expansion? ... Not ideal, but as long as chassis provision is reliable, we'll live with that. No internal hard drives (effectively)? I have no experience of Thunderbolt, but again we'll work with what we're given and find solutions. Maximum RAM 64GB?! Sorry, that's just put the brakes on this investment. 4 DIMM slots is an outdated spec, and from what I'm reading above, it's not compensated for by any performance gains elsewhere.

    The only possible explanation, is that 8 DIMM slots didn't fit into the beautifully honed cylinder or generated too much heat for the stunningly silent single-fan cooling system. Either way, design has trumped functionality, which at this end of the market is (IMHO) a mistake.

    I wanted to love this machine, I had allocated funds for a big spec', I'm an absolute Apple devotee, and now I'm just left feeling slightly deflated.

    Jules
     
  25. Trailerman thread starter macrumors member

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    Aug 12, 2010
    #25
    .... by the way, thanks for all the helpful and constructive responses.

    I posted a similar topic over on the Apple communities: it got two one line rants and then a mod pulled the whole topic. I've reposted because I think it's a totally legitimate debate, but I don't hold out much hope.

    These forums are great.
     

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