Poll: Nvidia vs AMD

Nvidia or AMD?


  • Total voters
    73

jblagden

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Aug 16, 2013
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A few years ago, Apple switched all of its Mac from Nvidia to AMD. While this move is fine or even appreciated for some users, there are some of us who prefer Nvidia. While I'm not a big fan of the iMac and the Mac Mini due to the lack and/or difficulty of repairs and upgrades, I may be willing to buy one if it were possible to buy one with an Nvidia GPU.

What do you think?
 

antonis

macrumors 68020
Jun 10, 2011
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That's a very apple-ish poll, though. Why should there be a lock-up in the one or the other brand ? A fourth option is missing and it's apple's major problem: "Let me choose".
 

jblagden

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Aug 16, 2013
1,156
640
That's a very apple-ish poll, though. Why should there be a lock-up in the one or the other brand ? A fourth option is missing and it's apple's major problem: "Let me choose".
Yeah, that would be awesome! That really would be the best approach since it would allow everyone to get the GPU they want. I'm just afraid Apple's taking an all-or-nothing approach with GPUs where they'll only go with a single vendor at a time. But it would be nice if they gave everyone a choice. The only roadblock is that they might be concerned that it might make it difficult to stock the stores with both Nvidia and AMD models of every Mac. As it is, they don't have all of the CTO options in the store. But if they could do that I'd be very happy. I guess they'd also be worried about having to explain the difference for AMD. Though, I guess they could give the simplistic explanation that "Nvidia is for gaming and AMD is for creative work like video editing". But they might not want to do that because they've been trying to keep their computers from looking like gaming machines for a while. I remember seeing a YouTube video about that - I think it was called "Why do Macs Suck for Gaming?".
 
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maflynn

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May 3, 2009
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A fourth option is missing and it's apple's major problem: "Let me choose".
Most AIOs don't provide a way or choice to change the dGPU, so its no an Apple thing per say but rather just how the machines are designed.

I'm happy with my 2015 5k iMac so I guess I'm in the don't care category. I would prefer nvidia but amd is fine.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,586
1,884
Whichever works the best with Metal. We are seeing gains from AMD with Vulkan and Vega is rumored to be a powerhouse. So while I prefer nVidia currently that could completely change overnight.

Also I'm not a computer gamer and the majority of what the 10 series offers is specifically tailored toward gamers. Not that AMD is much different but I have a bias toward raw compute power, cost, efficiency and low(er) operating temps. Whichever does that the best I'm in favor of, and currently that's nVidia.
 

antonis

macrumors 68020
Jun 10, 2011
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Most AIOs don't provide a way or choice to change the dGPU, so its no an Apple thing per say but rather just how the machines are designed.

I'm happy with my 2015 5k iMac so I guess I'm in the don't care category. I would prefer nvidia but amd is fine.
Which means that you'd also like a "Let me choose" option. Besides, Apple denies us this choice from their entire line, not only AIOs.
 
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cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
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Which means that you'd also like a "Let me choose" option. Besides, Apple denies us this choice from their entire line, not only AIOs.
I feel we need to be somewhat realistic when it comes to what we as consumers should expect.

Nearly every manufacturer choice requires Apple making a different logic board to support it. GPU, CPU, RAM (type), even the type of SSD (SATA, M.2, etc).

Its not like there is a universal socket for AMD and nVidia GPU's, or AMD and Intel processors etc etc.

I think we can only hope Apple uses the best parts for their machines.
 

varian55zx

macrumors 6502a
May 10, 2012
748
260
San Francisco
Which means that you'd also like a "Let me choose" option. Besides, Apple denies us this choice from their entire line, not only AIOs.
That because making the best possible product isn't a priority for Apple. It isn't even a consideration at this point.

AMD will always be worse (less so for GPU of course), so they should switch back to nvidia and use the latest chipset. But they won't do it.
 
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cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
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That because making the best possible product isn't a priority for Apple. It isn't even a consideration at this point.

AMD will always be worse (less so for GPU of course), so they should switch back to nvidia and use the latest chipset. But they won't do it.
I think we butted heads on this before, but the civilized debate is always fun with people with the same interest.

I give you that nVidia is objectively better ignoring cost (cost per frame generally tends to lean toward AMD but not always) but why do you feel it's better for Apple? And the iMac specifically?

Btw, I'm going to try to defend AMD although I feel it's a losing battle overall. However I'm not so sure when it comes to Apple specific use.
 
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dylin

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Jun 10, 2010
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From what I've seen, the change to AMD was to help with open CL performance for apples apps and Metal.
Since I use my windows machine for cuda based applications, I don't really have a preference with what they go with for the moment as long as it works well with Final Cut Pro and is fast enough with my exporting.
 

fokmik

macrumors 601
Oct 28, 2016
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USA
i prefer the most non-hotter gpu. i select, give us a choice...so i do a research and if the nvidia gpu will run cooler that is the option for me
 
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antonis

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Jun 10, 2011
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I feel we need to be somewhat realistic when it comes to what we as consumers should expect.

Nearly every manufacturer choice requires Apple making a different logic board to support it. GPU, CPU, RAM (type), even the type of SSD (SATA, M.2, etc).

Its not like there is a universal socket for AMD and nVidia GPU's, or AMD and Intel processors etc etc.

I think we can only hope Apple uses the best parts for their machines.
CPUs, SSDs and any other h/w component belongs to a different discussion. Besides, I doubt people are furious for the lack of choice in those areas. But when it comes to desktop-class GPUs it's apple that goes proprietary, not the manufacturers. One only has to look at this wreck of a computer that is called Mac Pro 2013.
 
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cynics

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Jan 8, 2012
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CPUs, SSDs and any other h/w component belongs to a different discussion. Besides, I doubt people are furious for the lack of choice in those areas. But when it comes to desktop-class GPUs it's apple that goes proprietary, not the manufacturers. One only has to look at this wreck of a computer that is called Mac Pro 2013.
Well with a good designed AIO we should expect that.

But even with standards there will always be certain proprietary nature to OS X/MacOS in combination with its hardware. Even when the Mac Pro used standard slots for GPU cards you couldn't just use any GPU that fit into it like a PC.

Sure Apple COULD fix that but when does it stop being a Mac and start being a PC like Dell, HP, etc? It would become more advantageous of consumers to just build a hackintosh if Apple added that level of compatibility. And since they're a hardware vendor in business to make money that would only hurt them. Hurt them more then keeping their systems more closed off in their wall garden.

For me personally if I wanted that level of control I would just build a PC, run Windows or Linux (if you don't like Windows). Then *I* have the control not a single manufacturer.
 

Trahearne

macrumors 6502
Oct 6, 2014
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Which means that you'd also like a "Let me choose" option. Besides, Apple denies us this choice from their entire line, not only AIOs.
From an operational standpoint, they can provide neither conflicting options nor too much options, especially when the GPU in iMac is not a removable module but soldered. Having said that, why they do not offer Nvidia graphics as a top-of-the-line option over the AMD stack is beyond my knowledge.
 
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cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
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From an operational standpoint, they can provide neither conflicting options nor too much options, especially when the GPU in iMac is not a removable module but soldered. Having said that, why they do not offer Nvidia graphics as a top-of-the-line option over the AMD stack is beyond my knowledge.
Likely a contract for a undisclosed amount of time. I would imagine they get a certain price for the GPU's if they only use AMD or something along those lines.
 
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varian55zx

macrumors 6502a
May 10, 2012
748
260
San Francisco
I think we butted heads on this before, but the civilized debate is always fun with people with the same interest.

I give you that nVidia is objectively better ignoring cost (cost per frame generally tends to lean toward AMD but not always) but why do you feel it's better for Apple? And the iMac specifically?

Btw, I'm going to try to defend AMD although I feel it's a losing battle overall. However I'm not so sure when it comes to Apple specific use.
Why do I feel it's better for Apple?

I feel it's better for Apple because the cards are better. It's established that it is necessary to have a mobile GPU in the iMac instead of a full desktop GPU. That is something we have to live with.

The new GTX 1080m is essentially as powerful as the full desktop version, nvidia is a great company and they continually strive to make a great product. Their newest mobile cards are essentially as good as the desktop counterparts.

You take the M395 it is massively outclassed by the 1080m or 1070m. However all 3 can fit in the iMac.

And before the argument is raised that the iMac is not a "gaming machine". It is true that there are two types of graphics cards workstation cards and consumer cards. Even though the 1080 is good for gaming it is still a consumer card just as the M395 is. So comparing the two is completely valid.

The M395 can be considered a gaming card too though only a mediocre (at best) one.

Middle of the range components are unacceptable in a $3k machine. Sadly, I need macOS and don't have a choice.
 

padams35

macrumors 6502
Nov 10, 2016
261
141
You take the M395 it is massively outclassed by the 1080m or 1070m. However all 3 can fit in the iMac.
I'm skeptical about that. The M395X is 125W card while the 1080m is reportedly 180W. Obviously the 1080m wins, but I doubt the 1080m (or even the 1070m) could be dropped into the current form factor. More likely we would see a 1060m, and while benchmarks show that as respectable upgrade so is the laptop RX 470.

So AMD RX 470 vs Nvidia GTX 1060m? Eh, either is good.

That said I'm biased. I'm a 21.5" user and am eagerly hoping that -any- dGPU will make a return to that size.
 

varian55zx

macrumors 6502a
May 10, 2012
748
260
San Francisco
I'm skeptical about that. The M395X is 125W card while the 1080m is reportedly 180W.
You needn't be.

The specs are available online. The M395 and even M395X are outclassed by a wide margin.

Obviously the 1080m wins, but I doubt the 1080m (or even the 1070m) could be dropped into the current form factor. More likely we would see a 1060m, and while benchmarks show that as respectable upgrade so is the laptop RX 470.
I don't see why not plenty of smaller notebooks (smaller than the iMac) have the 1080m so I do think it could surely fit I don't have any doubts in terms of that.

Previous iMac had the 780m so no reason we shouldn't have the 1080m now. Absolutely none.

The new AMD cards are better than what is in the current iMacs but the nvidia line is still better in terms of specs. Thus, they would be more optimal.
 

cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,586
1,884
Why do I feel it's better for Apple?

I feel it's better for Apple because the cards are better. It's established that it is necessary to have a mobile GPU in the iMac instead of a full desktop GPU. That is something we have to live with.

The new GTX 1080m is essentially as powerful as the full desktop version, nvidia is a great company and they continually strive to make a great product. Their newest mobile cards are essentially as good as the desktop counterparts.

You take the M395 it is massively outclassed by the 1080m or 1070m. However all 3 can fit in the iMac.

And before the argument is raised that the iMac is not a "gaming machine". It is true that there are two types of graphics cards workstation cards and consumer cards. Even though the 1080 is good for gaming it is still a consumer card just as the M395 is. So comparing the two is completely valid.

The M395 can be considered a gaming card too though only a mediocre (at best) one.

Middle of the range components are unacceptable in a $3k machine. Sadly, I need macOS and don't have a choice.
It would appear Apple sticks with generally the best a manufacturer is currently offering.

That said do you feel the 1080 which is significantly more expensive would impact the price of the iMac?

If so do think people would be willing to pay that?

It's obviously tough to compare considering we are dealing with the mobile variants but looking at the desktop versions there is currently around a 50% delta comparing the 480 to 1080.

And if people are willing to pay it (most don't know who nVidia and AMD are but know what $$ is) how do you feel the iMac will benefit?

Short of a couple games I play I could get by with integrated graphics. For 4K editing my bottleneck is still the 6700k. So obviously I'm bias toward my own usage but I'm curious what others are doing that they would be willing to pay even more for an iMac to make it worth it to them.
 
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cynics

macrumors G4
Jan 8, 2012
11,586
1,884
LOL really?NVIDIA all the way.apple turn to amd only to make more money and make our and their computer's life miserable.
Turned back to AMD would probably be more accurate. Mac's initially had and the majority have AMD/ATI graphics and other components. Even back in the early PPC days you can find AMD components in Macs. Its a relationship that far outdates even the founding of nVidia.
 

faneos

macrumors member
Jul 26, 2012
80
60
You don't have to be an electronic engineer to understand that in a computer that's so restrict in terms of cooling and power draw you can't put an inefficient amd gpu.iMac considered a media creation computer and
majority use Adobe Creation Suite that amd has performance and compability issues due to poor optimized drivers and incapable hardware.Also people want to play games in their Mac's why go with a gpu that is throttling and underperforming?
 
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boto

macrumors 6502
Jun 4, 2012
437
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I'm really hoping Apple goes with nVidia. The only drawback I can think of is a higher cost and that doesn't concern me if I'm getting the best possible component available today. However, I think Apple still has a contract with AMD and won't be shifting any time soon when they get custom GPUs for cheap prices.
 
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