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The Mac Pro: So what's a D, D and D anyway? We have answers Architosh

All rights reserved. Closer look: The previous generation Mac Pros included the option to fit dual CPUs, but as you can tell from the radical AMD FirePro D300 redesign of the Mac Pro that Apple has fundamentally rethought its approach to the Mac workstation. Apple has chosen to adopt a dual-GPU configuration as standard fitment to leverage the massive processing power in GPU architecture. The biggest performance gains in certain professional applications come through harnessing the processing power in GPUs, rather than the CPU.


AMD customized the design of these cards according to Apple's requirements and although they are not available on the aftermarket, AMD sells some rough equivalents to each card, which makes for an interesting point of AMD FirePro D300 from a pricing perspective. At a glance, the upgrade charges seem expensive, but in reality, they are extremely competitive. Architosh has done some detective work to find the AMD after-market cards that best matched the custom cards in Apple's AMD FirePro D300 Pros.

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  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 vs AMD FirePro D300

The entry-level Mac Pro is fitted with with two GPUs, meaning that even this AMD FirePro D300 is most definitely befitting of the 'Pro' banner. A fully specced previous generation Mac Pro peaked at 2.

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 vs AMD FirePro D300

Although performance increases incrementally from 2 teraflops to 2. Performance reaches 3.

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This is compares with a score of However, while there was a notable uplift in performance on the Cinebench OpenGL score under Windows 8 with CrossFireX enabled, AMD says that the improvement in performance should have actually AMD FirePro D300 greater. Apple is providing AMD FirePro D300 two of these or just about 2, But because of the strategic decreases as noted above the real value Apple is providing may be much closer to just under 2 grand. Essential key specs include: Could this again be because of core clock differences?

Amazon has FirePro W cards retailing at Apple is providing essentially two of these or approximately 1, And it's giving you two of them at the same time. I don't have any AMD FirePro D300 screens, but I did get three x screens hooked up to the Mac Pro with no problem.

AMD FirePro D300 Even with just half of its max screen count used, it's kind of alarming to see that much display coming out of such a small computer. The most likely reason for the rebranding is that the clocks are slightly lower than the nearest retail workstation equivalent card, and none of the Mac Pro FirePros have ECC memory.

This will be an issue for scientific users who need the extra data insurance of ECC memory, but it's not necessary—and it's actually slower—for creative content users. AMD FirePro D300 a rare bit flips in a cancer cell growth sim, that's a big problem.


D is a Tahiti-based GPU. Amazon has the FirePro W at 3, D The D is a bit harder.

AMD FirePro D300

What we know for certain is AMD FirePro D300 too is Tahiti-based. Because this is also a Tahiti-based unit it could be based on the W or the W, though its memory bus is matched to the W Here are the key specs:The FirePro D was a professional graphics card by AMD, launched in January Built on the 28 nm process, and based on the Pitcairn graphics. No information is available for this page.

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