Performance on 2019 Mac Pro vs other hardware?

I'm trying to determine investment paths on a few things. I've been longing for the 2019 Mac Pro, but at a $15K build, I'm wondering if it'll be better than a 2013 MacPro or a MacMini or MacBook Pro 16" with eGPU. As you can imagine, I'm building out a main/backup and at about $30K, I'm curious if going this route will be smart.

I'm currently pulling in a lot of NDI streams and mixing them with dynamic animations utilizing various motion graphics videos within Millumin.

For perspective, I'm running on a 2013 MacPro, 3.5Ghz 6-core Intel Xeon E5, 32GB RAM, AMD FirePro D500 3GB. Just curious if performance would be far better. I've enjoyed reliability with the 2013 MacPro. Thermal problems often caused the machine to crash during show at times (MacBook included).

Mostly what I'm hoping to hear from the community is what performance they've seen since the 2013 MacPro and if the few members who have actually tested out on a 2019 Mac Pro feel the cost of entry was worth it.


  • Hello @TheMcBe,

    Here are a few thoughts.

    From the benchmarks, the AMD Radeon Pro W6800X is 3x faster than Fire Pro D500 (that is a modified FirePro W8000). But this is just theory. Anyway, the big advantage of the MacPro 2019 is being upgradable, so you could change the GPU later on if needed.

    If we speak about video, Apple advertises about managing up to 6 x 4K displays with the AMD Radeon Pro W5700X or the AMD Radeon Pro W6800X.

    Regarding buying the duo version for the GPU : Millumin performs its calculation on only one GPU, then it can spread the result other GPUs. In brief, this allows to have more outputs, but not more power. I hope my explation is clear enough (more about this in this article).

    While eGPU can have very nice performances (for example managing 3 x 4K displays, see this post), but you will get the best performances when the GPU is plugged directly to the motherboard (and the MacPro motherboard is powerful enought to manage several big PCIe cards). If you want to cut the price, eGPU is a very solution to my mind. But if you want a very powerful machine, investing in a desktop and upgradable computers would be a better choice in the long run.

    From my point of view, if you are used to work with a MacPro 2013, the gap will be huge when going to the MacPro 2019. Consequently, you would be able to work as before, but faster and with quite some room to ask for more.

    I guess you should post something on Facebook's group, as many people have talked about the MacPro 2019, exchanging their feelings.

    But on the other side, you should also wait a few months (weeks) before Apple announces the MacBookPro using Apple Silicon : so far, I have been very impressed by the performances (at such a low energy/thermal cost), whatever it is the CPU, the integrated GPU or the neural engine. From my tests with a powerful shader, the MacMini M1 is a bit more efficient than a MacBookPro 2018 with a Radeon Pro 560X. Yes, this is impressive. The big drawback of the current MacMini M1 is that it can only manage 2 displays : I would recommend it right away without this sad limitation ...

    In brief, do not rush and wait until the end of the year. If possible, rent a MacPro to get an idea how it feels with your own workflow : this is the best way to check if it is worth being it.

    Best. Philippe

  • Hum ... here is a link to the very same question you asked on Millumin's FB group.

  • edited August 2021

    Ha! Yes @Millumin /Philippe - sorry for the double question. Figured I'd try both communities... you are incredible and thoughtful to answer in both. :)

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