Video Editor. Getting a Mac Pro. Which GPU Should i get

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Edgwaldo, Aug 7, 2008.

  1. Edgwaldo macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2008
    Im gonna be getting a new Mac Pro within the next couple of days. I'm pretty much set on most of the things i want to get on it. The only thing Im still not sure about is the GPU. Should i go with the NVIDIA or the ATI. The FX5600 is a bit out of my price range so it would be between the 8800 or any of the ATI's. What would you guys suggest.

    Also. Is there anything else that you would suggest that is essential for video editing.Let me know. Thanks
  2. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    Go with the default 2600 then if you find that it isn't enough get the Radeon 3870. Video editing is a pretty generic term these days and you may not need to utilize the 3D power provided by the highre range cards.
  3. AppleNewton macrumors 68000


    Apr 3, 2007
    1 Finite Place
    i really like the 8800, really nice all around card with alot of functionality for various apps.

    depending on the other software/hardware your using with your video set up.
    it would be beneficial to have a back up system.
    redundant RAID system to back up all your media and video files and sessions.

    More memory.
    you can get some dirt cheap deals on memory at OWC and this brand: [buy in pairs]

    but comes down to what software/hardware your working with.

    as usually if your using external hardware for editing, such as to sync playback with a different i/o device, tape deck, machine, etc...alot of the weight will be on the machines and not necessarily your graphics card or computer, minus processing power.
    So if you say got the 2.8 with the stock card, youll be perfectly fine with working with conencted peripherals etc.
    a 2.8 with the 8800 will give you some maximum performance for using video memory and acceleration if need be and creates some nice performance head room.
    Capitalizing on memory and a back up system are essential regardless.

    so id recommend the 8800 as a good all around performance card, upping the memory and getting a raid system or a good back up system in place.

  4. kahine macrumors regular

    Jul 10, 2008
    I'd recommend the 3870 over the 8800 - it seems to do much better in Core apps in OS X currently
  5. Edgwaldo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2008
    Video Editing really just means some Final Cut and possibly some not too advanced After Effects work. I'm not gonna be running any other hardware on the computer other than an I/O external audio card for some music recording ill be doing. Actually, if anyone can give me some advice on that as well i would love it. As of right now i think im getting a Motu 8pre. Good choice? That is pretty much the top of my price range.

    As far as gpu's. I hadn't really considered getting any card other than the ones that comes with the mac. The 2600 and the 8800. Of these. Which is best. Is 2 2600's the equiv of 1 8800?
  6. Mackilroy macrumors 68040


    Jun 29, 2006
    The 8800 GT will be faster than two HD2600s unless you're doing stuff which is heavily Core Image-based (also, the two cards cannot run in tandem under Mac OS X, so it's rather pointless to buy two for that reason).
  7. Edgwaldo thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 7, 2008
    Ahhh. Very useful information. Thanks a bunch Mack. Exactly what i wanted to know.
  8. nick9191 macrumors 68040

    Feb 17, 2008
    The 3870 is better than the 8800 and 2600 for the work you are doing.
  9. Techguy172 macrumors 68000

    Feb 2, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    I would get the ATi 3870 it's the best card right now available for the mac pro especially for OS X.
  10. Chaos123x macrumors 68000

    Jul 8, 2008
    The Cheaper 2600 Xt will outperform the the Nvidia 8800Gt for video editing.

    The best card to get for Video Editors is the Ati 3870.

    The Nvidia card is for Gamers.
  11. wpc33 macrumors 6502


    Jul 2, 2006
    Vancouver, BC
    This is a fact. The 8800 is actually slower in Final Cut Studio apps, and the like. For your needs, stick with the 2600, or maybe buy a 3870 if you're rendering HD and 3D.
  12. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

    May 7, 2004
    Sod off
    The HD2600 should be good enough...but if you have the money I'd go with the Radeon 3870.
  13. Wormy23 macrumors member

    Jul 1, 2008
    xlr8yourmac got some user feedback on the ATI HD 3870 regarding video editing. Basically, he says the 3870 is better than the 8800 because the nvidia drivers are unstable.

    "Just installed mine yesterday in our 8-core Xeon, 8GB RAM, and it blows away the stock card away for video editing tasks. (I asked what the previous card was - he later said his 2008 Mac Pro had the 8800GT card, which is a BTO option - see later comments below.-Mike) In fact, I had to disable OpenGL acceleration in After Effects (latest After Effects from CS3, v8.0.2.) and Motion (v3.0.2) in order to have them work properly, but the ATI 3870 works perfectly. I'd had to turn off real-time updating of video scopes with the previous card, or it would drop frames on playback. Works perfectly with the 3870. It's like getting a new machine.

    The page about the Mac Pro (2008) graphics card shows the one we were using in the center, the black NVIDIA with the white "arrows" - GeForce 8800GT. (8800GT card is a $150 BTO option now (was $200 option originally) on the current (2008) Mac Pros.) The Mac was purchased a month ago, brand new from Apple. (And we have the hardware raid card as well, with 3 drives in a Raid 5 configuration.)
    I had problems with the card from Day One. (It was about a month or so, as we had planned to get the new ATI card as soon as we could.)

    ...on the ATI, everything works as expected (and as it used to on my old G5).
    The NVIDIA gave OpenGL errors in After Effects if I enabled OpenGL, and it would not play HDV video in the timeline of Final Cut Pro and at the same time display real-time videoscopes, without dropping frames. (Which the old G5 could handle.) Does NVIDIA simply not have good drivers? Or Apple not know how to work with them? Strange.
    I'm running 10.5.4, with no Software Updates outstanding.
    Hope that helps!

    (He later wrote)
    Still loving the new 3870 card... It really makes the 8-core machine feel like it's working at full capacity. I'm having to get a new license for Nuke and can't wait to try that out. (I love Nuke... only problem is that it was originally designed for film work and doesn't handle interlaced video as well as Motion or AE. But it's a killer program and I think it will fly on 8 cores.)
    -Wayne F."

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