The present and future of post production business and technology by Philip Hodgetts
The preview of the new MacPro has, not surprisingly, polarized “the Internet”. It is however exactly the computer I thought Apple would produce for a new MacPro. Well, the tubular design was a surprise, but the lack of internal drive space, expansion slots were no surprise. But the lack of NVIDIA “cards” and therefore CUDA support, has alarmed many, quite needlessly.
CUDA is a language NVIDIA developed to allow app developers to directly call the card’s hardware layer. It is this layer of direct call that Adobe leveraged so well with Premiere Pro CS5 and the Mercury Engine. At the time they were developing the Mercury Engine, OpenCL was way too immature to use a foundation. CUDA was the only viable alternative.
Since then OpenCL has matured, and does for Final Cut Pro X what CUDA does for Adobe’s Mercury Engine. Similarly, NVIDIA have been adding more OpenCL support to their hardware, and Adobe have been adding OpenCL support to the Mercury Engine.
More relevant and important is that the specific AMD GPU – that’s doubled up in the new MacPro - is a powerhouse performer for Adobe Creative Cloud apps (specifically Premiere Pro), outperforming the current best NVIDIA card. read more...