Possible Nvidia GPU in next MBP?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by leman, Oct 24, 2016.

  1. leman macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #1
    Just to throw something onto the rumour mill ;) Nvidia has announced the GTX 1050 Pascal GPUs, which release 25.10. These GPUs have TDP of around 75W and with some binning and underclocking, would perfectly fit into the 15" MBP. Coincidence? Or is the next MBP coming with Nvidia's Pascal?

    There is be a number of reasons why this could happen:

    - The Pascal GPU is the most efficient design on the market right now, offering trully stellar performance. The performance boost over the M370X would be in the ballpark of 2x or more
    - Apple usually switches between Nvidia and AMD every few years, and they have been using AMD chips in the last iteration
    - The timing of it all. Isn't it convenient that Nvidia announces a suitable chip just two days before Apple's reveal?
     
  2. keysofanxiety macrumors G3

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #2
    Hmmm. At the moment I'd say no. Reasons being:

    1) Apple are trying to move away from dGPUs where possible. Reason is a high failure rate, thermal efficiency & battery life. Practically every single Mac from 2008 with a dGPU has either had a repair program or a very high failure rate.

    2) Leaks. Typically you'd see driver support added within the latest beta of macOS. To the best of my knowledge, there aren't any new NVIDIA GPU drivers listed in the newest beta.

    I would be very excited if they did add those GPUs, though. I hope you're right! :)
     
  3. leman thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #3
    To 1) true, but at the same time, with Intel apparently ditching its high-performance iGPU efforts, and with dGPUs becoming more efficient then ever, Apple has only limited options. Long term, they might want to look for other suppliers of CPU/GPU packages, such as AMD — curious about how their new CPUs turn out.

    P.S. Frankly, I am quite sure that the GPU will be Polaris 11, but its a MacRumours after all...
     
  4. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #4
  5. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #5
    Yeah, I'm thinking that Apple won't abandon AMD quite yet (or at all). I'm sure they signed a contract that would cost them a fair amount of $$ to break.

    Plus Apple doesn't really care about very fast GPUs, at least they never have in the past. AMD is good enough, for most of what consumers use MBPs for.
     
  6. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #6
    Virtual reality has changed this I think, they have to be in a space where their machines are VR ready in the next year or so or risk being left behind.
     
  7. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #7
    VR is definitely changing the landscape, but to be honest, I'm not sold that Apple is onboard yet, they seem rather slow moving in a lot of areas.

    I would be surprised to see Nvidia inside the new MBPs, in all honesty.
     
  8. Samuelsan2001 macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2013
    #8
    Oh no I agree there. not this time round for he MBP maybe next year starting with Mac pros and iMacs where you might expect VR equipment to be used. The Polaris GPU's are fine for VR as well.
     
  9. blast87 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2012
    #9
    I'm not up to date with all graphics card world. Are nVidia chips that much better than AMD?
     
  10. koyoot macrumors 603

    koyoot

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2012
    #10
    Nope. No signs of Pascal in any way, shape or form in macOS Kexts, not even Nvidia Web Drivers for macOS have them. There is only beta support for Maxwell in Web Drivers - no sign of Maxwell hardware in MacOS builds.

    Thirdly. 75W is the highest possible power draw for GTX 1050 Ti. It has 1.39 GHz boost clock. To maintain it in 35W thermal envelope, you would need to put it on 1.1 GHz boost clocks.

    RX M480 is the GPU we will see in MacBook Pros. It has 16 CU design - 1024 GCN cores, and 1 GHz core clock. And yes, all of the kexts needed for the GPUs are already in macOS.
     
  11. moep macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    #11
    The upcoming rMBP will come with AMD Polaris 11 chips. There are many details that point towards this. 35W TDP, a thinner chip, driver support in Sierra, et cetera.

    The latest rumours are that current Polaris cards only underperform because Global Foundries ran into issues with the manufacturing process.
    These issues were recently fixed and cards with the new chip revisions report 30-40% lower power consumption at constant performance, which of course translates into 30-40% more performance when power is the limiting factor. That would make Polaris 11 competitive with Pascal and perhaps even put it ahead in mobile devices.

    My guess is that Apple decided to go with AMD based on the designs they saw but couldn't anticipate the manufacturing issues. Another possible reason why the rMBP refreshes are so delayed.

    I could see Apple switching back to Nvidia for the iMac because a GTX1060/1070 would be perfect and Vega is nowhere to be seen.
     
  12. leman thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #12
    That is very interesting info! Could you point me to some sources? I did find some links online but I am not sure whether its the original information or the interpretation of an interpretation. If that is true, than that new Polaris would be indeed exactly what AMD has promised and more then competitive compared to Pascal.
     
  13. moep macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    #13
    There's no original source. Sales for the current RX480 would fall off a cliff if people knew that a massively improved version is around the corner for the same price.

    for example here's a youtuber that reviewed a recent RX480 that never mysteriously never pulled more than 100W under full load, yet performed better than reference:



    compare that video to the first hand reports of very early cards at launch and it paints a clear picture IMO.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/Amd/comments/4qk6db/psa_this_is_why_the_rx480_is_exceeding_its_tdp/
     
  14. leman thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #14
    Thats a very interesting video. It seems to show that there are some significant fluctuations across the Polaris chips (its also something I have noticed in the benchmarks). Let's hope that the rumours are right and that Polaris is/will be fixed! That certainly makes the card much better value.
     
  15. leman thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2008
    #15
  16. moep macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    #16
    I'm aware that there are hot discussions about whether the efficiency is from an improved manufacturing process, binning or simple undervolting but frankly I don’t care where the improvement comes from as long as it's in the new rMBPs.
    Apple's laptops usually get custom or better than average bins and the recent developments give me hope that whatever Polaris 11 chip is in the new laptops will be competitive with a Pascal part of the same TDP.

    PS: that reddit article looks like it's written by a RX480 owner on day 32 of his return window
     
  17. justin216 macrumors 6502

    justin216

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    #17
    It's not impossible to see nVidia in this next MacBook Pro, it would just require kexts to support them, which could come in a custom point release of macOS.

    However, I'd file it under "exceedingly unlikely", since the AMD cards are already there in the kexts, and just how many things will Apple want to change with this release over the last model? Hard to say.
     

Share This Page