Stupid question time!

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by JimmyDreams, Jul 22, 2011.

  1. JimmyDreams macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    #1
    I'm waiting for the MP refresh to either get a MP or maybe a fully-loaded iMac.

    If I get a MP, I'm trying to decide on single vs multiple CPUs. I know software can take advantage of multiple cores, but when it comes to multiple CPU's, does the software take advantage of that as well, or does the user actually load up specific programs into each CPU? I'd hate to settle on a single CPU for price reasons only to kick myself later for not getting 2.

    (I know...if I'm asking something like this, you're saying "dude, a MP isn't for you." But I'm the kind of person that doesn't mind paying a bit more to have expandability and/or little to no delays on my computer. I figure the midrange MP is monster enough to serve all my needs....)

    My '08 core duo iMac needs replacing.....

    Comments, complaints, suggestions?
     
  2. I3eXa macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2004
    Location:
    IdaPIMP
    #2
    a MacPro would be more that a 'bit' more than an iMac for starters. Try more than double the cost to get a base model, plus monitor....just sayin save the money and buy me a MBP :D

    secondly, you do nothing but open/run the program. A dual CPU computer would be able to do more stuff better but not always. Really depends on the software you are running.

    It's like a Ford escort (single cpu) and a Ferrari 598 (dual cpu); they can both cruise the freeway at 70mph but the 598 will get you to 70mph faster. If you want to go up some canyon road twisties (heavy resource program like AutoCAD or something), then the 598 is gonna out perform....make sense??
     
  3. JimmyDreams thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    #3
    Thanks. That's pretty much what I figured. Now I just need to decide if the added cost of a MP is worth it, considering how powerful and refined they've made the iMacs. Casual use with some 'power user' needs (CS5, video editing, etc.) mean the MP might be overkill, but by how much?!? ;)

    I don't dwell much on resale value, but my old iMac seems to be worth more than I expected....although I would think that the depreciation factor for MP's is much more over time. (shrug)

    Decisions, decisions....
     
  4. I3eXa macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2004
    Location:
    IdaPIMP
    #4
    well I have a 2010 imac 3.06 C2D with 8GB RAM and run CS5 on it, but really don't do any editing. It seems to do fairly well but I'd assume the MP would do a bit better, plus you'd have the 'wow' factor of having a MP sitting on your desk/floor :D Love em!

    Yeah, the iMacs hold their value pretty well and you can get a bit of dough for em still these days, the MPs on the other hand seem to depreciate faster as you said. I don't think you'll be disappointed whichever direction you end up going though...
     
  5. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2010
    #5
    It may do worse if you don't get the clocks over 3.06GHz. Adobe is not the ruler of multithreaded app development. Illustrator, Dreamweaver, InDesign, Fireworks see little to no benefit. PS and AE would see more improvement with more cores even if they are slightly lower clocks. For Adobe in general you want to keep the clock speeds up. Don't get a 2.26GHz Xeon and expect it to be as snappy.
     
  6. JimmyDreams thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    #6
    I don't think I'd go anything less than 3.06 on the clock. Getting 2 slower CPU's with more cores won't do me as much good as 1 CPU with a faster clock and a few less cores. I don't know that I'd be running many aps (if any) that would take advantage of the 2nd cpu enough to overcome the speed difference. The price would be prohibitive as well.

    I'm just waiting to see if the MP refresh includes the Sandy-Bridge architecture and at what speeds vs the price. I don't mind spending more, but there's a limit to price vs. performance.....at least when you're not on an expense account!!! :cool:
     
  7. snberk103 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    Location:
    An Island in the Salish Sea
    #7
    A few other things to consider.

    1) RAM. More RAM will speed up the system more than other other upgrade, assuming that you are starting with the base amount of RAM. Photoshop in particular likes to scarf RAM for breakfast.

    2) MPs will take more RAM than just about any other Mac, and you get more RAM slots with multiple CPUs in the MP.

    3) But do you really need 64GB of RAM? I've got 12, and I know people with 16GB to 24GB of RAM. But we are professional photographers. Most people can do very nicely with 6 to 12 GB. imho, of course.

    4) Pay very particular attention to Thunderbolt, and what it can do for you. At this point there are not a lot peripherals available, but I expect that to change within a year. In theory, an external HDD connected by TB should run as fast as an internal. This turns the whole internal HDD vs external HDD wisdom on it's head.

    5) The newest Mac Mini Quad w/ TB is pretty decent setup. Stack some 10,000 rpm external HDDs via TB (when available) and you would be hard pressed to tell the difference between the performance of the new Mini vs a moderate MP, until you started loading up the RAM.

    6) By the same token, the new i7 27" iMac with TB has the same advantages as the new Mini, except it comes with a screen and stuff. Load it up with RAM (OWC says it will support up to 32 GB) and you are good to go.

    Hope this helps
     
  8. sjinsjca macrumors 68000

    sjinsjca

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2008
    #8
    First, clock speed isn't quite the indicator of horsepower that it used to be, in today's multi-core world.

    Apple is miles ahead of the competition in utilizing those cores, too. It's baked into the OS with Grand Central Dispatch-- a very key technology which makes it easy for software designers to get the most out of multicore implementations. The flip side is, the software designers need to take advantage of the technology to gain the most benefit. But there's benefit even if they don't, since GCD is integrated into the toolchain provided by Apple. So your software will only get faster as new releases emerge.

    Go i7 and you won't be sorry.
     
  9. JimmyDreams thread starter macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    #9
    Thanks for the comments.

    Do you mean new iMac i7 or wait for the MP's with i7?
     
  10. derbothaus macrumors 601

    derbothaus

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2010
    #10
    Too bad Adobe does not live in this world.
     

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