WHICH DO YOU CHOOSE,
the 2013 Mac Pro 6-Core with
FirePro D500 or D700 GPUs?
Posted Friday, June 6th, 2014 by rob-ART morgan, mad scientist
Many of you are asking if the new 2013 Mac Pro. 6-Core should be ordered with the optional FirePro D700 GPUs or if the D500 GPUs are strong enough. We don't have a comprehensive answer but this is what we have learned so far.
8c nMP D700s = 2013 Mac Pro 3.0GHz 8-Core, dual FirePro D700 GPUs
6c nMP D700s = 2013 Mac Pro 3.5GHz 6-Core, dual FirePro D700 GPUs
6c nMP D500s = 2013 Mac Pro 3.5GHz 6-Core, dual FirePro D500 GPUs
(All three were running OS X 10.9.3)
DaVinci Resolve 10
We imported a 289 frame RED Digital Cinema clip (4800x2700 with 5:1 compression ratio). We playback the R3D clip at "Half Good" playback quality. The target 'real time' playback rate is 23.976 FPS. (RED graph bar means FASTEST in Frames Per Second.)
One of the filters that uses OpenCL is the Iris Blur. (RED graph bar means FASTEST in SECONDS.)
GPUtest - Volplosion - OpenGL pixel shader test run at 640x480 Windowed. (RED graph bar means FASTEST in Frames Per Second.)
This is an OpenCL benchmark. We rendered the Sala scene using GPUs only. (RED graph bar means FASTEST in Thousands of Samples per Second.)
The four graphs above illustrate four potential effects of choosing the 6-Core 2013 Mac Pro with optional the FirePro D700 GPUs instead of the default FirePro D500 GPUs:
NO GAIN: In pro apps like DaVinci Resolve that make heavy use of the CPU during playback of RED Digital Cinema, the optional D700s provided no boost over the D500s in the 6-Core 2013 Mac Pro.
SMALL GAIN: In pro apps like Photoshop, rendering Filters that use the OpenCL capability of a single FirePro only show a fractional gain from the optional D700s over the D500s in the 6-Core 2013 Mac Pro.
SIGNIFICANT GAIN: In OpenGL heavy apps like Volplosion that use a single GPU, there is a clear advantage from the optional D700 -- though it does NOT make the 6-Core the equal of the 8-Core 2013 Mac Pro.
SERIOUS GAIN: In OpenCL heavy apps like LuxMark that use all GPUs, the optional D700s enabled the 6-Core to match the render speed of the 8-Core 2013 Mac Pro.
So are the optional FirePro D700s worth the 15% premium that they add to the base price of a 6-Core 2013 Mac Pro? It depends on what apps you typically run.
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