smatovic wrote: ↑
Thu Dec 12, 2019 4:04 pm
...obviously the new Mac Pro does not play in the same NPS/Dollar league like
systems based on recent AMD Zen CPUs for Stockfish, or Nvidia RTX series for LC0,
but for Video/CGI the quad-GPU deal seems a good one, you get 4 AMD Vega II GPUs
(with each 32 GB HBM) for ~10K $.
The main issue with that is that the Radeon VII is available for $550 to $600 these days
, which is almost as good as the Vega II that is in that Mac Pro.
The Vega II is the only AMD GPU with 32GBs of HBM RAM, which is incredible. But the Radeon VII still has 1TBps memory bandwidth, so as long as your dataset fits inside of 16GBs, the Radeon VII will probably be a better buy. Only for those who need more than 16GBs of RAM will benefit fro the Mac Pro. Build your own will always be much cheaper. I'd estimate that a "self-built MacPro" with 4x GPUs and Threadripper 24-core would be maybe $6k or so.
But how many people are building Threadrippers + Radeon VII computers? If I were a software developer, do I write something for Mac Pro, or for Windows workstations? Simply choosing to write your software on the smaller platform (Mac Pro) has its benefits... business research is required (make sure enough of your potential customers are actually buying Mac Pros before writing software for it).
From a chess-perspective... there is one programmer over on the Technical forums who is actually using those PDEP / PEXT instructions for interesting stuff. That requires an Intel processor, and the 28-core Intel is the top-of-the-line, and appropriately priced. If you were going the PDEP / PEXT / AVX512 route, the Mac Pro might be worthwhile to look at.
But if you're a GPU-programmer, in Chess in particular, the 16GB Radeon VII should be more than sufficient RAM.