Previous 1 2 Next 19 Replies Latest reply: Jul 14, 2010 6:52 PM by Shaluda
Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)

I'm fortunate to have the 4870 and the 285 graphic cards. The 285 was a disappointment for a long time, I didn't think it outperformed the 4870 overall and was upset by that. Now since the 10.6.3 update, I think the 285's performance has risen. Not by a lot, but some. I didn't notice a performance increase for the 4870, but it may be there as well.

I was just wondering if anyone else with either of these cards has notified a performance increase after updating to 10.6.3.


MP 8-core 2.93GHz, 32GB RAM, Rad4870, 3xOCZ120, 3xIntel80, 4xVR300, Mac OS X (10.6.2), 30" HD Cinema Display, 20" Cinema Display, iPod touch, G5Quad (JIC)
  • Pierre Cross Level 1 (10 points)

    I just can say one thing:

    The 4870 in the 10.6.3 is more responsive in every aspect of system interface... more fluid, you know.

    Better Frames in 3D? No

    Better Video Performance? No

    The 10.6.4 seems to have more and more graphic tweaks.

  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    Hi Pierre,

    Appreciate your comments.
    I think the 4870 is a great card. Works great overall as you say. I didn't test it after the 10.6.3 update so I'll assume it's just running fine as usual but still be capable of more.
    I've been waiting a long time for the GeForce 285 I have to just match the 4870's performance. It's always seemed to lag behind the Radeon, especially as regards system interface. It seemed clumsier.
    In Apps like PS4 and AE, tests confirmed the 4870 was the slightly faster card. And one Rosetta game I really liked played horribly with the Nvidia, the gamers card.

    But... I think 10.6.3 turned it around. At least it's on a par with the 4870 now. I think the responsiveness of the system interface is still off, but it seems better. I think it will go on into the future that Nvidia still can't make cards that "meld" together with a Mac like ATI/AMD cards have.
    But the tests I've run since the change to 6.3 say it's slightly over that of the 4870 now. Adobe apps show that to me anyway. The one game I had problems with is much better though I think the Radeon was sharper. Still, Apple must have addressed something there. Something with the graphics or with Rosetta.

    Well, the changes aren't enough to justify the cost of the card in my view, but for those of us who fell for it, at least it's among the two best cards out there,

    Merci, Pierre.
  • Pierre Cross Level 1 (10 points)
    Hi Samsara!

    It's a pleasure talking to you.

    I feel the same, the "meld" is perfect in ATI, that's for sure.

    Au revoir,

    p.s. - the difference from 10.6.2 to 10.6.3 is a lot better but some graphic functions need to be tweaked
  • The hatter Level 9 (60,930 points)
    Nvidia GPGPU Flash player support.

    Doesn't really seem like something a Mac Pro would need, but then I think 10.6.3 has yet to show how seamless and effortless it can juggle 4 things at once yet, either!

    Flash Player previews support for H.264 video hardware decoding on Mac OS X 10.6.3 -- the most recent release of the Mac OS. Gala allows developers to preview Flash Player with hardware acceleration of H.264 video on supported Mac computers

    offload H.264 video decoding tasks from the CPU to deliver smooth, high quality video with minimal overhead, improving video playback performance, reducing system resource utilization
  • BEIGE Level 1 (5 points)
    I didn't see any increase with 10.6.3 and my GTX 285 and I use Maya and Mudbox daily. It performs horribly compared to the 4870 in Maya (and Mudbox):
  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    Thanks, BEIGE,

    I had heard before that the 285 was not working out for Maya and other 3D apps. That's a pretty graphic example of it not.
    My 3D programs aren't in the class of yours so I wouldn't be able to tell if 6.3 made a difference. If I were using Maya or similar programs (which I would be if I had money, dang it), that would be pretty much the final straw in even considering the GTX285.

    I had gone back to the Radeon a long time ago, it always seemed to work better overall and the scores in the tests I made were more than fine. But with every mention of a graphics change, usually in a OS update, I put the 285 back in again and see if it's improved. Well, against the 4870 at least, it never really has.
    As I said though, I thought some improvement had occurred in 6.3. It seemed so minor that I needed another perspective or two though. So I thank you BEIGE for a great reply. And one that should help a lot of people who are into the apps you are.

    For me I think I'm watching a pot boil, where the oven may or may not even be turned on.
  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    It's a pleasure talking to you.

    Always the same here, Mon Ami, I like your spirit ...

    The "Meld". What could that possibly be? Is there something inherent in Nvidia graphic cards, the drivers maybe as is said, that Apple simply cannot understand or work with to get Nvidia cards to work as well as ATI cards generally do in Macs?

    Nah, can't be. Apple knows everything...
  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    I've tried updating Flash player a couple times in the past month or so and the opened file always said I was using an even later (newer) version, so it wouldn't install. Has Adobe come out with something new? An effort to please Apple during these rancorous times? I'll have to go sneak around and see...

    Message was edited by: Samsara
  • The hatter Level 9 (60,930 points)
    Apple + Adobe = ?

    Did you use the uninstaller first? that is a must.
  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    I downloaded and installed it without using the uninstaller first. There seemed to be none. Just a straight install with no error messages saying the revision was too old or too new. It popped right in. Safari seemed the same.
    So, now what? Lol.
  • The hatter Level 9 (60,930 points)
    I see it on MacUpdate, and in the comments section, USE the uninstaller.

    With 2.93 x 8, you don't have to worry about off loading from cpu to gpu, and you are running with GTX as it isn't supported with ATI. OpenCL is being ported and ATI will eventually do more with GPGPU/CUDA.
  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    "Important: All users should uninstall any currently installed Flash Player before installing the latest prerelease. See below and the Release Notes for more information."

    Did that apply to me ? Lol. Not the first time I rushed in a head without thinking. Bit of the tempus fugit lately.
    Ok, I'll go back and see what I'm missing. Thanks Hatter.
    With 2.93 x 8, you don't have to worry about off loading from cpu to gpu, and you are running with GTX as it isn't supported with ATI. OpenCL is being ported and ATI will eventually do more with GPGPU/CUDA.

    Have any good articles about that? I don't see much of what's happening in terms of Graphics development. I hear a term and topic like OpenCL come along and then it fades into bits and pieces on the web. It's hard to get a picture of where or what anything is at any one time.
    A ways away I would guess. The 285 as I understood was supposed to have "untapped" abilities to make it a better card for the new technologies coming out. Since the 285's drivers seem out of Apples control to master, I'd always hoped that the industries moving forward in general would push the 285 into the something special category. That may be the case, but it seems there will be other, better cards out there to choose from way before that.
  • The hatter Level 9 (60,930 points)
    Mac OS X 10.6.3, which became available on March 29, 2010, is the first Mac OS X release to expose APIs that support H.264 hardware video decoding in the browser.

    *2009 Mac Pro owner running GTX-285 and ATI 4870 Cards* (via Aux power Y adapters)
    Just chiming in that I've got the dual high-power graphics cards running without a hitch. It's rendering with the GTX 285 and CUDA now while I use the computer with the Radeon 4870

    provides parallel computing using task-based and data-based parallelism. Its architecture shares a range of computational interfaces with two competitors, NVidia's Compute Unified Device Architecture and Microsoft's DirectCompute.

    OpenCL gives any application access to the Graphical Processing Unit for non-graphical computing. The GPU had previously been available for graphical applications only. The GPU memory would be available to the operating system and or applications essentially as faster system memory than the main system memory.

    All the buzz lately about Flash and iPhone, Adobe vs Apple, and even Microsoft with support.
    HTML5 will support playback of H.264 video only, "H.264 is an industry standard, with broad and strong hardware support." H.264 isn't accepted by the open source community because it is encumbered by patents. That's why Mozilla doesn't support H.264 in Firefox. Use of the H.264 video codec requires a license from the MPEG LA, a group that manages pools of patents on behalf of participating companies.

    Microsoft is one of many licensors of patents managed by MPEG LA and as such shares in the licensing royalties collected from H.264 video licensees. Apple, another supporter of H.264, is also an MPEG LA licensor.
  • Samsara Level 4 (1,320 points)
    Quality stuff. Pays to keep an eye out.
    I'll miss ya, H-man.
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