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BARE FEATS LAB - real world Mac speed tests

PRO APP SHOOTOUT, PART TWO:
'late 2012' 27-inch iMac 3.4GHz Core i7
versus five recent Macs

Originally posted Wednesday, December 19th, 2012, by rob-ART morgan, mad scientist
Corrected Premiere Pro GPU intensive graphs on December 30th, 2012.

Many of you are curious as to whether the 27-inch 'late 2012' iMac can handle pro apps with strength. This page is PART TWO where we show how it handles Pro apps from Adobe and Blackmagic Design. (To see Apple Pro Apps, go to PART ONE.)

GRAPH LEGEND
680c = 'mid 2010' Mac Pro 3.33GHz Hex-Core Xeon, 24G RAM, GeForce 680 Classified GPU
MP 3.3 = 'mid 2010' Mac Pro 3.33GHz Hex-Core Xeon, 24G RAM, Radeon HD 5870 GPU
iMac 3.4 '12 = 'late 2012' (27") iMac 3.4GHz Core i7, 32G RAM, GeForce GTX 680MX GPU
iMac 2.9 = 'late 2012' (21.5") iMac 2.9GHz Core i5, 8G RAM, GeForce GT 650M GPU
rMBP 2.7 = 'mid 2012' (15") Retina MacBook Pro 2.7GHz Core i7, 16G RAM, GeForce GT 650M
mini 2.6 = 'late 2012' Mac mini 2.6GHz Core i7, 16G RAM, Intel HD 4000 GPU
iMac 3.4 '11 = 'mid 2011' (27") iMac 3.4GHz Core i7, 16G RAM, Radeon HD 6970M GPU

All Macs were running the latest version of OS X Mountain Lion.

CPU INTENSIVE

After Effects CS6 - Render Total Training Benchmark project with Multiprocessing enabled. (LOWER number means FASTER.)

Premiere Pro CS6 - Render Unsharp Mask on 30 second Apple ProRes 422 (HQ), 1920 x 1080 video sequence. (LOWER number means FASTER.)

Photoshop CS6 - Render Reduce Noise filter on 6000x4500 pixel sample image. (LOWER number means FASTER.

GPU INTENSIVE

Premiere Pro CS6 - render Gaussian Blur on 30 second Apple ProRes 422 (HQ), 1920 x 1080 video sequence. (LOWER number means FASTER)

Premiere Pro CS6 - render Fast Color Correction on 30 second Apple ProRes 422 (HQ), 1920 x 1080 video sequence. LOWER number means FASTER.

Photoshop CS6 - render Iris Blur (OpenCL) filter on 6000x4500 pixel test image. LOWER number means FASTER.

Photoshop CS6 - render Tilt/Shift filter on 6000x4500 pixel test image. LOWER number means FASTER.

DaVinci Resolve - playback 30 second Apple ProRes 422 (HQ), 1920 x 1080 video sequence with three nodes and no limit to playback speed. (Target speed is 29.9FPS.) HIGHER number means FASTER.

BOTTOMLINE
The newest, fastest CTO iMac, the 'late 2012' 3.4GHz Quad-Core i7 (Ivy Bridge) with the NVIDA GeForce TX 680MX, wins one out of three CPU intensive tests and five out of five GPU intensive tests. Its main rival is the Mac Pro 6-core.

THE CUDA FIX
To get the Premiere Pro to recognize the iMac's GeForce 680MX as a CUDA supported card, we edited the "approved" list in the app's Contents folder. However, we also added it to the OpenCL supported cards list. Turns out that having it in both lists confuses Premiere Pro. When we removed it from the OpenCL list, Premiere Pro reported that it was using CUDA acceleration and the render times for Gaussian Blur and Fast Color Correction dropped. The same is true for the GeForce GT 650M in the Retina MacBook Pro. The graphs were updated accordingly on January 30th. Plus we added results for the GeForce G680 Classified as well.

For Apple Pro apps, see PART ONE.

ONE MORE SPECIAL GPU TEST
The players have changed but the game is the same. The ultimate GPU render handoff from the CPU is the Ray Trace 3D render in After Effects CS6. Our sample is a 6 second 1280x720 project. Notice the time is in MINUTES, not seconds.
LOWER number means FASTER. Non-CUDA GPUs need not apply. Below we list only the name of the GPU. See the Legend to find out which Mac was hosting that GPU.

LEGEND of RAY TRACE GRAPH
GTX 680C = GeForce GTX 680 Classified in 'mid 2010' Mac Pro 3.33GHz Hex-Core Xeon
GTX 680MX = GeForce GTX 680MX in 'late 2012' (27") iMac 3.4GHz Core i7
Q6000 = Quadro 6000 in 'mid 2010' Mac Pro 3.33GHz Hex-Core Xeon
Q4000 = Quadro 4000 for Mac in 'mid 2010' Mac Pro 3.33GHz Hex-Core Xeon
GTX 285 = GeForce GTX 285 in 'mid 2010' Mac Pro 3.33GHz Hex-Core Xeon
GT 650M = GeForce GT 650M in 'mid 2012' (15") Retina MacBook Pro 2.7GHz Core i7

GEEK BIT: Since the 2012 iMac is so new, it isn't on Adobe's list of approved GPUs for After Effects. We used the "sudo nano" command in Terminal to add the 680MX to the list of "raytracer_supported_cards" in the app package contents folder. We did the same thing with Premiere Pro adding it to the lists of approved CUDA and OpenCL supported cards. Nothing was needed for Photoshop because the OpenCL box was already checked in Advanced Graphics Processor Settings.

MORE TO COME
We will loosen up tomorrow and post same game benchmarks.

Thoughts? Questions? Contact
Also, you can follow him on
Twitter @barefeats

WHERE TO BUY NEW APPLE PRODUCTS
Help us earn a commission by ordering your Apple products using this link:

For UK readers, visit Apple Store UK.

WHERE TO BUY MEMORY UPGRADES FOR 2012 IMAC
OWC has an upgrade kit for the 21.5" iMac. It requires disassembly but they provide the tools and the installation video. They also offer memory upgrade kits for the 27" iMac.

Check with Trans International for memory kits for most models of Mac.

MaxUpgrades has memory kits for various models of iMac.

WHERE TO BUY ADOBE PRODUCTS
See all the Adobe USA Special Offers.

Live OUTSIDE the USA? Go to THIS LINK and pick your Country. Then pick the type of Adobe online store (Home, Business, or Education).

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copyright 2012 Rob Art Morgan
"BARE facts on Macintosh speed FEATS"
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