Will I notice a difference with the new Graphics Cards?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by supernovastar, Nov 15, 2007.

  1. supernovastar macrumors newbie

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    Oct 8, 2007
    #1
    If apple do decide to use new graphic cards in the new Mac Pro, what kind of difference will there be to the current ones? I no nothing about the technical aspects of graphic cards and how exactly they work, but was just wondering if I will benefit from these new cards. I am in the process of setting up my own photography business and once up and running will be using PS CS3 and Aperture all day (along with Preview & DPP)

    What will these new cards do for me? I'm going to be upgrading from a PowerBook G4 so I'm obviously going to see a huge difference no matter what graphics card the machine has, I've just noticed a lot of people don't seem to like the current ones!

    Thanks in advanced for any feedback you have.
     
  2. Spikeanator6982 macrumors 6502

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    Jun 13, 2007
    #2
    idk, i dont know if anyone can really answer this till we know what the new graphics cards are. but idk how much photography needs a fast gpu, i dont think it requires and fast one.
     
  3. macz1 macrumors 6502

    macz1

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    Oct 28, 2007
    #3
    People are complaining about the stock graphics card. The 7300GT is just too slow for these days. The ATI X1900XT seems to work quite well but it's overpriced for its age.
    For your use you will notice a difference between 7300 and X1900 but I wouldn't expect drastic improvements in felt speed between the ATI and a faster new card. (Except for some games in Windows...)
     
  4. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

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    #4
    It will make Aperture faster/more responsive, but it won't make a difference for PS.
     
  5. bigbird macrumors 6502

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    #5
    I do video editing and rendering with FCE 3.5HD (just ordered the FCE 4 upgrade for my forthcoming Mac Pro) and iMovie 6. Will a faster graphics card benefit me?
     
  6. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

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    #6
    i doubt it... i don't know the details of the iMovie filters/effects, but I'd guess they are similar to FCE and FCP's filter in how they work.

    Motion and Color are the only Final Cut Studio apps that really use the GPU.
     
  7. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

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    #7
    once again, here we go:

    Unless you regularly run apps that are specifically coded & designed to offload some or all of their functions directly to the GPU, DO NOT waste your money on better video cards, period, with the possible exceptions of upgrading an older system to meet the minimum requirements for an OS to install/run or to drive a new monitor at higher resolutions that an older one.

    Some of the more common apps that DO the above are:

    A) OS X (more & more with every new version)
    B) Gaming
    C) 3 Dimensional modeling/rendering
    D) Working with/manipulating and/or converting video from one format to another
    E) Animation/Flash

    2 dimensional apps like Photoshop, Illustrator, Office (except perhaps Powerpoint) Web browsers, email, etc generally DO NOT require, utilize, even nor need monster video cards to run well or at all......


    MODS, can we perhaps make this a stickie factoid ?
     
  8. Angsty macrumors member

    Angsty

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    #8
    Besides using Blender, Wings 3D and Second Life that obviously utilise the 3D modelling environment, how else would I know if the application I am using is specifically designed to use the GPU directly?

    Ang
     
  9. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

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    #9
    smurf... calm down.

    you obviously didn't read the first post... or even my post after it. the OP uses Aperture and Photoshop. I told him that Aperture would benefit from a better GPU and PS wouldn't. What did your post add to that?
     
  10. bigbird macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Hmmmm, OS X you say, OK, everyone here uses that.
    Converting video, hmmmm, I do that all the time with iMovie, FCE, and a Canopus 110.
    Animation/flash, hmmmm, many websites have embedded flash/animation in them.

    Sounds like I and many others need upgraded video cards. Is this true, or is Smurfbox exaggerating?
     
  11. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #11
    No, he's not exaggerating. A standard run video card is more than enough for OSX, 2-D apps and consumer level video content creation. A faster video card will make marginal improvements only - perhaps too small to notice.

    If you are not a gamer, the list of applications that actually can be accelerated with a better GPU is pretty short
     
  12. bigbird macrumors 6502

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    #12
    OK, that's what I was hoping to hear.
     
  13. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

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    #13
    huuummm..........not.........sure.........may......be.......√.......the.......specs............. :rolleyes: :p
     
  14. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

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    #14
    Yes, I did read the OP & your reply, and what makes you think that I am NOT calm ??????

    AFAIK, my post added just what I meant it to add......which was to expand upon what you posted in a little more detail, and it was not directed just towards the OP, but to anyone else who might have the same ?? and possibly read this thread based on the title.......

    And ps.....when I said "Animation/Flash", I meant creating it, not just watching it on beebop around on webpages :p
     
  15. nikiski macrumors regular

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    Hong Kong, or Surrey, BC, Canada
    #15
    Actually, PhotoShop CS3 does use GPU acceleration. What actually uses it is beyond what I know, but here's a screen cap for the preference page in PhotoShop CS3...
    Picture 1.png
     
  16. emillerpdx macrumors newbie

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    Oct 23, 2007
    #16
    GPU in Flash?

    I was always under the impression that Flash rendering was dependent on the CPU, not the GPU (video rendering excepted, I believe). Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.
     
  17. benpatient macrumors 68000

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    Nov 4, 2003
    #17
    OS X uses your graphics card to render things to screen, and not just in a passive, CPU-constructed kind of way (like Windows XP does, for example).
    10.4 started using the graphics card to render 2d and 3d effects. 10.5 expanded on this usage greatly. All those fancy animations in Time Machine? They will use your graphics card if it is fast enough. The dock bouncing? yup. The water ripples in dashboard? That too. All of those drop shadows on windows and the subtle blurring of elements underneath the translucent drop-down menus...all of those things will run on the GPU unless your GPU is slow enough that the OS decides to fall back to "software" mode. Vista also does this with it's "Aero."

    Aperture is painfully slow on G5 PowerMacs with the default graphics card, the 5200 Ultra. In fact it will tell you that it is not a supported graphics card and you have to trick it into opening the application...

    It is marginal on the 7300 of the base-level MacPros.

    Your Aperture experience is almost directly dependent on your graphics card's performance as long as you meet a certain baseline with your CPU(s) and your hard drive speeds...which most Macs that have or can have a sufficient GPU already meet.

    Photoshop CS3 most certainly does off-load some of its processes onto the GPU if you have one and it is enabled in preferences. They haven't gone into any detail about what sorts of things it actually uses the graphics card for, but it is pretty obvious from their description in their online materials that it is being taken advantage of if you have a fast enough card:

    When the new MacPro is released someday, and they update the graphics options, it is VERY recommended that you get something equivalent to an 8800-series or faster if you want to keep using your machine for years to come and running up-to-date software. What you DON'T need is a physics processing unit!
     
  18. SmurfBoxMasta macrumors 65816

    SmurfBoxMasta

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    #18
    Ok so lets add CS3-E to the list of offloading apps.....not sure why though, since PS is still essentially a 2D app at heart.....unless it is using the GPU for speeding up the on-screen filters & effects rendering like OS X's eye candy..........
     
  19. bigbossbmb macrumors 68000

    bigbossbmb

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    #19
    PS CS3 Extended actually has quite a bit of 3D stuff included on it. Check out some of the features here. Click on Feature Tour>Menu>3D compositing and texture editing.

    Not too much that NEEDS to be offloaded to the GPU, but it's nice to have it.
     

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