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Mark Aceto

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Posts posted by Mark Aceto


  1. TM can fake 4D Scheduling (not the actual scheduling but the pre-viz of a build) with the Phasing Tool in the latest update. In the events/entertainment world, this will be immensely helpful with planning outdoor concerts/festivals, and communicating with parks, gov agencies, and site services... someday.

     

    @JuanP any exciting news for us tomorrow? Next Tuesday? Week after that? No pressure... 😉

     

     

    • Like 2

  2. Also, it seems like every Mac in the past 3-5 years has been a "stop gap", so it's like playing Mac Roulette with where we spend our money.

     

    It'll be interesting to see what Teaser Tuesdays reveal. I know we're all praying for the 3-core limitation to be lifted but I'm not holding my breath. And moving more CPU processes to the GPU (VGM) seems to have plateaued, so I'm not counting on huge gains there. Hopefully, I'm wrong about both, and there'll be surprise announcements about Redshift and TM live-link... but I'm just dreaming now.

     

    • Like 2

  3. To keep the conversation on topic, my main point in this thread is that if you're speccing out your next Mac build for RW, you're wasting a ton of $ on slowing down your Mac for most of your day-to-day work. The wakeup call for me was buying 2 Mac's (Mac Pro CG and iMac Pro) that I thought would be a sweet spot of compromise in the middle: 10-12 cores. There was barely any noticeable gain in RW from a 4-core Mac at double the cost (and an iMac is faster for everything other than RW).

     

    All that I really hope to accomplish in this discussion is to save another VW user that gut punch when you fire up the new Mac that costs twice as much as your last Mac, and there's no noticeable speed improvement. The sinking feeling of that buyer's remorse can be avoided in 2020. There's really no ROI after spending 5k on a Mac and it's not until you spend 12-15k that there's any noticeable ROI with RW (at the cost of everything else you do with VW).

     

    I wish there was a headless Mac with a Threadripper 3970 and a RTX 2080 but there's not (and never will be). Hopefully, ARM will fill that gap 2-3 years from now...  In the meantime, this new iMac exists, and it's that rare unicorn where the usual compromises were not made, so it improves upon every feature in the reigning single core champ:

     

    677447771_ScreenShot2020-08-05at12_13_27PM.thumb.png.3e31b18defb942e1cd77c6ef97e7558d.png

    • Like 2

  4. On 8/5/2020 at 8:52 AM, zoomer said:

     

    It is this ^ why interested max CPU upgrade.

     

    I am very happy with my consumer Ryzen, which is not far behind the 28c Mac Pro in Cinebench.

    Also it has one of the best single core speeds, not far from fastest Intels.

    For now it is still mostly C4D or Modo CPU rendering here.

    Which gets more and more uninteresting in the future

     

    But if I spend money on an iMac it should not be much slower than the existing PC.

    Otherwise I could stay with my trashcan for a few years more.

     

     

    But if I would buy another PC, I couldn't resist and would go Threadripper anyway 🙂

     

    If I had your kickass Windows workstation, I would have no use for an iMac. But if all that I had was an older Mac, I would be very interested in the new iMac to get me through the next 2-3 years (or more).


  5. 9 hours ago, zoomer said:

    heise.de says RAM still user upgradable.

    Which makes sense as still old cooling solution in previous case.

    Want to see 5 Cinebench results in a row and complaints about

    noise and throttling first though.

     

    Of course I am interested in the 10 core i9 and 5700XT only.

    I don't want something much slower than my Ryzen 3950X RTX 2070

    at double the price for keeping Mac experience for about 3 years.

     

    Modeling and CAD is still ok but so far I wasn't able to activate any useful

    network rendering cross platform between Mac and Windows or Linux.

    And I doubt my Trashcan will be enough for another coming 2 years.

     

    You bring up some common issues / misconceptions why a lot of users are unnecessarily frustrated with Mac and VW. If your concern is Cinerender and multicore, don't use a Mac (unless it's a 28-core Mac Pro) because 8, 10, 12 cores... won't move the needle for CPU rendering. You need 28+ cores to notice any real world improvement in render times. And increased core count has 2 terrible side effects: reduced clock speed and added heat (double whammy). All so it can cut the render time of a static image from 60 min to 10 min.

     

    The secret to being a happy Mac VW user is fast single core base clock speed and a decent GPU. There's no reason to throw $$$$$ at 6-24 cores that will only get used by RW, and cripple the speed of where you spend most of your day modeling and drafting (not rendering). I've wasted thousands on a 12-core cheesegrater ($3,000 used) and 10-core iMac Pro ($9,000 new) that barely topped 3.0 GHz base clock speed. I would open Activity Monitor to see a single thread slammed against the ceiling while the other 23 threads are idle. Fans? Neither machine ever got remotely hot enough to hear the fans (unless I was using RW). Until VW can use more than 3 cores for non-rendering operations, and Redshift for rendering, there's no value in a CPU with more than 4 cores. Just get a separate Windows workstation for CPU rendering if that's what's needed (or export to Cinema/Redshift).

     

    That's also a huge reason why Apple is leaving Intel: they continue to add cores in an attempt to compensate for clock speed, which started to plateau around 2012. Moore's Law is dead. And most 3D modeling/design apps can't just make their software multicore for all operations, so people yelling at VW to add multicore performance to keep up with Intel is just pounding sand.

     

    Fastest single core base clock speed, fewest amount of cores = happy designing, modeling, drafting, plating, computing... 

     

    NOTE: it's not single core operations that cause thermal issues, so anyone complaining about the fastest single core Mac that Apple has ever built (3 years in a row) should stop adding cores (that VW will never use outside of RW) to their build.

     

    There's a lot of misinformation, mythology, and unnecessary bitching in these forums (especially on the Mac side). Always stay a year behind on macOS. Always give VW until SP2 or SP3 before fully committing to project sharing with other collaborators on a work project. Don't waste your money on a Mac Pro, iMac Pro, Xeon, ECC memory, or more than 8 cores. 32GB RAM is plenty for everything other than RW. Apple/AMD are finally putting decent GPU's in their machines again (more than VW needs but obviously not what UR/TM and other apps spec for real time ray tracing). Yes, there's still an Apple tax but their $5k middle of the road non-"Pro" model is the fastest VW Mac. Spending more than that is lighting money on fire (unless you're adding storage for some reason).


    Now, let's see what they do with the 16" MBP between now and the Big Sur release... 

    • Like 4

  6. 4 hours ago, zoomer said:

    With old cooling ?

    RAM now soldered ?

     

    I wouldn't be happy if it gets as loud as the previous iMac and throttles (?)

     

    Anti Glare Display price 600+ € ?

    I think by wearing only black turtlenecks and a darth vader mask you can save quite a bit.

     

    I am very excited about the first hand ons and benchmarks.

     

    Considering that the 2017/2019 iMac has been the fastest single core Mac for at least the past 3 years, I wouldn't worry about iMac's thermal limitations relative to any other Mac in their lineup because:

    • 10th gen chips run cooler than 9th gen
    • i7 runs cooler than i9
    • 8 cores run cooler than 10 cores
    • iMac Pro has better thermals but that 3-year old machine has never beat the fastest iMac at single core performance (which is where it counts with VW)
      • Same with Mac Pro

    With Apple, the price you pay for "Xeon" and "ECC memory" is clock speed. 

     

    The thermal wild card (pardon the pun) is the GPU but I would be (very pleasantly) shocked if VW maxes out that GPU. No matter how hard I pushed it, VW rarely used more than 1/4 of the 16GB VRAM in my iMac Pro (running VW 2019).

     

    I'm not sure where you read that the RAM is now soldered. It used to be super easy to access and service.

     

    All Mac screens after 2011 (except maybe the old MBA) are crazy reflective, so if they're offering the same antiglare screen option as the $1,000 XDR upgrade for half that cost ($500 USD), I wouldn't baulk at that option for the sake of my eyes and avoiding migraines. Especially if it's going to live next to an antiglare BenQ 32" display (for example). If this option is offered in a 16" MBP running Catalina, shut up and take my unemployment insurance!

     

    The point I'm making in response to the OP is: here's a machine operating the current system (Catalina) with no hardware limitations running VW. All of the internals are current which is more than I can say for the iMac Pro with 3-year old guts. For a Mac user looking for the last best fastest Intel Mac to run VW, this is the holy grail. Then we can all drool over the 32" chinless ARM iMac that they release sometime in the next 2-3 years... 

     

    • Like 1

  7. New iMac announced today with significant updates:

     

    https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2020/08/27-inch-imac-gets-a-major-update/

     

    $4,600 config (dream machine):

    • Nano-texture glass (same antiglare as XDR monitor)
    • 3.8GHz 8-core 10th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Turbo Boost up to 5.0GHz
    • 32GB 2666MHz DDR4 memory
    • Radeon Pro 5700 XT with 16GB of GDDR6 memory
    • 2TB SSD storage
    • 10 Gigabit Ethernet
    • 1080p FaceTime HD camera
    • Higher Fidelity Speakers

    • Studio-Quality Mics

    This sleeper will smoke the last gen, so if you're not looking for a headless Mac, there's a very good chance this will be the best last Intel Mac... aaaaannnnnddddd you can run Catalina on it if you so desire (keep in mind that Big Sur will be buggy as hell for the next 6 months to a year... like every Mac OS release).

     

    They also spec-bumped the base model killed the lowest 8-core option on the iMac Pro but as a former iMac Pro owner, it's an overpriced joke. The regular iMac will destroy it when it comes to VW performance.

     

    Now, if they release a new 16" MBP before Big Sur, I may have to beg, borrow or steal... 

     


  8. 14 minutes ago, designedAF said:

     

     

    Isn't SteveJ confirming in that post that they are indeed working on having VW running on Apple silicon by the end of the year? First they confirm it will run on Big Sur, and then go on to say AND, they are working on an apple silicon version as well.  It seems pretty clear to me that is what is being indicated there? 

     

    As other's have said though, I think I'm going intel with my next machine regardless.  

     

    Looking back at it, the discrepancy seems to be between Fall vs Winter 2020:

    • VW 2021 SP 0 will be compatible with Big Sur in Sep/Oct 2020
    • VW 2021 SP (2.1?) is expected to be compatible with ARM in Dec 2020

    Either way, as I haven't worked since Feb 2020, and probably won't until the year 2525... the concept of a new computer is purely academic at this point.

     

    • Like 2

  9. The problem is that vendors like 3Dc and, if we’re being honest, most CAD software / hardware are Windows-first. I love 3Dc and have found them to be responsive. They worked with me for a over year reverse-engineering what Apple broke (with the T2 chip) causing the infamous unplug your mouse after rebooting, and then plug it back in every... single... time until they finally fixed the issue. But they’re basically throwing their few Mac users a bone.

     

    Meanwhile, Apple really only care about supporting their own walled garden of iApps. They have a very content-skewed perspective of who their “pro” users are. If I edited unboxing videos with Final Cut for my YouTube channel because I was a “creator”, I wouldn’t really be affected by Apple’s cancel culture. But I suspect most of the folks here have to wait a year or more for at least one of their third party software / drivers to catch up to Apple moving the goalpost on them every 12 months.

     

    That said, the long game looks good: excited about where all of this lands in 2-3 years but looks like I’ll ride it out on Mojave Intel until then.

     


  10. A colleague just sent me this screenshot (running Catalina). For context, 3Dconnexion released their latest driver less than 2 weeks before this error message regarding "Legacy" software.

     

    Here's more info / discussion about what that means: Apple Begins Warning Users That 'Legacy System Extensions' Won't Work With a Future Version of macOS

     

    From the official support document: "In 2019, Apple informed developers that macOS Catalina will be the last macOS to fully support legacy system extensions", so until 3Dconnexion update their software (again for the millionth time), it absolutely should not operate on Big Sur. And I'm sure this issue won't be limited to 3Dc... 

     

    I implore every VW user to wait until 11.0.6 (supplemental update 3) before updating their primary / work machines. Bringing it back to the OP, I would not hold out for a brand new ARM machine running Big Sur released later this year (or next year).

     

    1336364595_ScreenShot2020-07-17at11_00_33AM.thumb.png.01c78afcae5326bd881e7f05bf5453d4.png

     

     


  11. @zoomer I suspect hope that Apple is only sharing the tip of the iceberg. Right now, YouTubers are winding themselves up with speculation that A + B must = C... 

     

    My optimistic take on this transition is that it removes the supply chain bottlenecks in their development cycle. Instead of having a scorched earth policy with NVIDIA, waiting for Intel to nano-incrementally update repackage their chips, not be able to depend on AMD to ship biblical quantities of chips... we should see every Mac get regular measurable updates with real world performance gains (vs mythical turbo boost speeds on thermally throttled hardware).

     

    In the few interviews I watched with Federighi, he reiterated that the big reveal at WWDC was a software announcement. The big hardware announcements are still to come... 

     

    🤞🏼

    • Like 1

  12. 8 hours ago, jeff prince said:

     

    Too bad we can't directly import Cinema4D into Vectorworks 😞

    There is so much entourage content available in C4D and FBX formats these days that I wish I could import.  I end up begging artists to export OBJ or do the Sketchup workaround to get most things of value into VWX.  That's gotta change.


    I prefer to keep entourage out of VW. Gotta keep those files lean and mean for project sharing with the rest of the team (they’d kill me if I didn’t). Render / previz apps have earned their place at the end of the pipeline in my workflow. In fact, if I can hand off my VW model to someone in the bullpen to go down the render hole, even better.


    Wait—how did we get here from ARM and Big Sur?

     

    • Like 1

  13. 10 hours ago, jeff prince said:

    I just hope this ARM switch doesn’t result in some of my software being dropped from the Mac

     

    That's always a realistic concern with Apple who love to "kill their darlings." My expectation is that it'll be a triage scenario:

    1. Live: Apple and Mac-only apps will probably be compatible on day 1
    2. Save: Mac-friendly third party multi-platform apps that will invest in making the transition
    3. Let die: legacy apps (no longer in development) although Rosetta 2 may extend life for at least a few years

    I have a few legacy apps that I'm figuring out what to do with before I "upgrade" to Catalina:

    • Neat
    • Bento (32-bit)
    • VW_Keyboard-Mac v2 (32-bit)
      • Which I've never actually used... Has anyone here used this?
      • Might be able to update to 64-bit with current Filemaker release
    • Like 1

  14. On 7/11/2020 at 6:15 PM, jeff prince said:

    2015 MBP.  I’m hoping I can keep it in service until the dust settles with this transition rather than buy a new workstation as I had planned this year.  My current system handles 1 GB VWX files featuring dense point clouds and OBJ models with ease, so I’m thinking I might be able to wait it out.

     

    As I type this on my 2014 MBP 15", I can attest to how much my 2019 MBP 15" with 32GB RAM and 4GB VRAM absolutely destroys this machine with similar files that you describe. As much as a I love the convenience of ports, keys, magsafe... there's no contest when it comes to performance. The 2020 MBP 16" with 8GB VRAM (HBM2) would run circles around my 2019 MBP, and it has better thermals, a good keyboard, Esc key, T-arrow keys, slightly larger screen... 

     

    Going back to the 2014 machine, I've also noticed a significant degradation of connectivity with Bluetooth, Airplay, HDMI 4k at 30Hz... everything is just a little laggier and a little bit problematic 6 years later (compared to the 2019 machine). If I hadn't stepped backward, I wouldn't have noticed. It's like driving a Ferrari, and then going back to a Prius.

     

    And, with the 2014 MBP, I don't have the option of plugging in life-support because Thunderbolt 2 is practically useless with an eGPU... But I do have that option with the 2019 MBP.

     

    So, personally, I wouldn't try to stretch a 2015 Mac into 2022+ (even if I had a workstation parked next to it). Mac internals are already way behind the day we 'drive them off the lot', let alone 5-7 years later. The current 16" is as good as it gets, and for some reason costs $1,000 less than I paid for a comparable config of my 2019 15" Butterfly BS. Then, while Apple and the rest of the world point fingers at each other over the next 2-3 years, you're happily working on the best version of the current generation (very much like your 15" has been the past 5 years). In other words, always go for the 2015 MBP / Snow Leopard of its generation, and let the early adopters suffer the pain points of the first few lemons. 3 is the magic number (not rev 1, not rev 2).

     

    And just to reiterate: 32GB RAM + 8GB VRAM... VW will use every bit of it, especially with other apps running, and especially 2 years from now (Redshift).

     

    Anyway, that's just my 2 cents 😄

     

    "Comparison is the thief of joy."

    – Theodore Roosevelt

     

    • Like 4

  15. Taking this with a grain of salt but he did his research, and cites his sources (all Apple Developer materials). Will be interesting to see how this develops (sounds like there could be some real gains 2-3 years from now).

     

    In the meantime, a 2019/2020 Mac seems like the best option to ride out the next 2-3 years until all of this is sorted (and supported by third parties). And of course a Windows workstation is always an option for heavy lifting if the MBP's continue prioritizing thin/light/battery over delivering on performance. 

     

     


  16. Looking at this, I may stay on Mojave (or Catalina) until I move to Windows:

     

    A visual comparison of macOS Catalina and Big Sur

     

    Cartoonish transparency, less contrast, more iOS... Federighi claims that making all of the app icons the same size ands shape "reduces fatigue" but the more everything looks the same, the more energy it requires to tell it apart. The Mac has always been about the OS (certainly not the hardware performance) but that advantage is diminishing.

     

    So another option in this transition to ARM is to transition out of Mac as they continually dumb in down for consumers (over serving their professionals).

     


  17. 5 hours ago, herbieherb said:

    Not even on the paper, and it throttles because of the iMacs form-factor to about 80% of its potential performance. In single-core tasks this iMac is about as fast as a stock cooled Ryzen 7 3700x. And as always Apple wants me to pay the full price of the i9-9900 in addition to the price of the base configuration. But yes, in a Mac centred view you're absolutely right.

     

    For clarification, the fastest Mac right now (the OP is about "Mac Silicon OS", so I didn't think to clarify that).

    • Like 1

  18. On 7/3/2020 at 3:14 AM, SteveJ said:

    Mark, we look forward to our  Developer Kit arrival on July 7!

     

    @SteveJ that's great news! Please keep us informed how VW 2020 runs using Rosetta 2 on an ARM Mac.

     

     

 

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