3 Replies Latest reply: Aug 19, 2010 4:27 PM by David Strait
David Strait Level 2 Level 2 (175 points)
I have an early 2009 Mac Pro with 8 cores and the upgraded ATI Radeon HD 4870 graphics card. I see that the 2010 Mac Pros have an option for the ATI Radeon HD 5870. Apparently this card will eventually be available as a kit that will work in my computer.

Do you think there will be a significant performance boost using the 5870 over the 4870 with Aperture if I purchase this upgrade? Apple says the 5870 is great for "motion graphics, 3D modeling, rendering, or animation", but not sure if I should expect much improvement using it with Aperture. I am pretty happy with the 4870, so don't want to spend the cash for minimal improvement.

Any thoughts or speculation?


2009 MP 2.66 GHz 8 Core, 16 GB RAM, Radeon 4870, Mac OS X (10.6.3), 2010 17" MacBook Pro i5
  • Fenster McManus Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)
    I've got the same machine as you and I'm curious as well. It sounds like there is twice the amount of VRAM which would make me think it handles graphics faster. I don't do too much with Aperture but I am an avid Motion and FCP editor. Curious to see what barefeats has to say about this...
  • David Strait Level 2 Level 2 (175 points)
    Barefeats had this to say about the PC version last October:


    It looks like you should get a significant boost for motion graphics, but I am not sure how that translates to Aperture performance. Possibly not as much?

  • David Strait Level 2 Level 2 (175 points)
    No response here, but I posted the same question on the Apple Store Product page for the 5870 kit and received the following reply:

    "You won't see a noticeable difference unless you are running heavy 3D applications or gaming. What I would suggest if you want to see an improvement in Aperture 3 is to add more ram to your mac (have at least 8 Gigabytes of ram ) boot up your mac to 64 bit (if running Mac OS 10.6) and run Aperture 3."

    This supports my suspicions that this card may not be much of an improvement for Aperture users that currently use the ATI 4870.