NEW OpenCL technology of snow leopard.

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by xoggyux, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. xoggyux macrumors 6502

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    Dec 4, 2008
    #1
    Hi, i have a few questions about new OpenCL technology of snow leopard?

    Will OpenCL allow the use of graphic memory as system memory as needed (and as available) for instance in office environment where no game or movies are running, will the system be able to use those 512~1gb (or more?) graphic DDR3 (faster) memory?

    Also, correct me if I am wrong, with new OpenCL tech, I think processor speed would be rendered worthless (at least small differences) for instance a 2.2Ghz processor + geforce 9400 + geforce 9600 shouldnt be much faster than a 2.4Ghz processor + 9400 + 9600 since both 9xxx are constant....



    cheers
     
  2. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

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    North Korea
    #2
    Not quite, Open CL stands for Open Computing Language, and it basically means if a programmer wants to he or she can write a program that will use the GPU's core to process data as well as the Processors cores. In a Macbook Pro with a dual core already, that would be like adding another two cores, and adding an extra 2/3 processing power and extra 2/3 speed...but...and its a big but... as i said earlier, its up to the programmer who wrote the code for the program as to whether they want their program to use these two extra graphics cores, and since most mainstream programs dont even use the full two core capability of most Dual Core processors in all Apple machines, what makes anyone think programmers will bother suddenly writing the programs for 4 cores? or if they have a quad core processor like in the Mac Pro + graphics core then writing the program for 5 cores? I dont think its going to make a massive impact for a decade or so until people start writing full multi core apps. At the moment the only real multi-core applications are certain games, like Crysis and Fallout 3, that make use of up to 4 computer processor cores, however these are games, so would already be using the graphics card anyway, making Open CL fairly useless for them...

    However if its PPC backwards compatible, this would give PPC's with decent graphics cards a massive massive speed boost, so they would even run apps like Photoshop CS4 fairly well.
     
  3. xoggyux thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Dec 4, 2008
    #3

    Well yeah, but if apple itself program its programs using that tech.. (for instance OS X using GPUs) in some kind of "smart" way, then when needed the OS could fall back and run on the GPUs (mostly) and leave CPU resources for poorly programmed software.. however i get what you say, if apple would want that approach they would have done it already with dual cores... like 1 core for system and 1 core for everything else.. what about graphic ram... would the system be able to use it if programmed correctly?
     
  4. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

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    #4
    Graphic Ram? I believe its DDR5 which means it could be used, but wouldn't be of much use, its mainly the cores that would be effective. From the beta of Snow Leopard it doesn't seem to me that Apple are using OpenCL in the operating system kernel itself, because then people without graphics cards in their systems would have trouble, or if your graphics card broke or froze while you were using your computer, then your whole operating system would freeze, which isn't very safe.
     
  5. xoggyux thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #5
    The whole point of such technology is that i should have to be dynamic otherwise there is no use... but in the other side thats what is actually keeping the multi-core technology behind..
     
  6. kastenbrust macrumors 68030

    kastenbrust

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    #6
    They made most native apps in Snow Leopard 64bit and multi core, well in my beta (the latest one: SL Beta 10A621)they did, so if you dont have a multi core processor, or one with 64 bit support your a bit stuck.

    So i guess this is a wave goodbye to PPC's however i dont think they're ready to take the step into Open CL native apps yet. Too much work, they just rewrote them all in cocoa for 64bit support which must have made someones month :D so to ask them to do it all again is a lot of work for lazy overpaid programmers like moi.
     
  7. xoggyux thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Is it dynamic though? like for instance an app running on a x GPU can it start running on CPU "on the fly"?
     

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