Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

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Alexrocks1253

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Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 8:09 pm

I've noticed personally that DaVinci Resolve is more stable on Mac. Has this been your experience?

Currently I have a PC with:
R5 3600
RTX 3080 10GB
32GB DDR4 3000GHz RAM
2TB Samsung M.2 Evo Plus SSD

DaVinci at 4K at points has been failing renders and pushing the GPU to 100% with low numbers of effects and high number of effects crash the program. The same exact project on my M2 Max Macbook Pro 32GB RAM runs slower on the timeline on the Mac, but smoother and never crashes or hangs.

Tried rolling back two driver versions on Nvidia, didn't work. Tried a clean install of Windows and that didn't work either.

DaVinci at 8K doesn't crash only on the Mac even though theoretically the Mac should be weaker in terms of GPU than the 3080, while the PC version gets the GPU memory full error and simply crashes.

Am I doing something wrong on the PC side of things? I double checked that all the components are in working order with tests like Prime95, Furmark, Memtest86, and S.M.A.R.T. data, which all cleared.

The clean install should have gotten rid of all the Windows bloat and rot that probably happened when I upgraded from W10 to W11 three years ago.

I do like my PC, but if I can't permanently fix these instabilities, then I will have to throw down $4K+ on a comparable Mac Studio... I hope I don't need to do that

Sorry for the rant-style post.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 9:06 pm

I see no difference on my Studio Max or PC. The Studio Max has h265 hardware decode that the 4070Ti does not have so editing is smoother on the Studio Max. However the 4070Ti is I think more powerful so rendering especially for Fusion titles is much faster on the PC. I now tend to edit on the Studio Max and do final corrections and rendering on the PC.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 9:08 pm

Interesting. I do wonder why recently my PC has just refused to work well with Resolve. I've noticed interesting things like this too: where there is better performance on Mac with playback but far worse performance with say noise reduction or super scale.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 9:23 pm

Alexrocks1253 wrote:Am I doing something wrong on the PC side of things?
I do think 12 GB of VRAM is a good minimum recommendation for Resolve.

With 8k, double that to 24 GB.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 9:24 pm

Jim Simon wrote:
Alexrocks1253 wrote:Am I doing something wrong on the PC side of things?
I do think 12 GB of VRAM is a good minimum recommendation for Resolve.

With 8k, double that to 24 GB.

Crud. Looks like I'd have to buy a fun $1000 GPU! NVidia's pricing these days is actually really bad. I may just uninstall Resolve from Windows and completely rely on my Mac, honestly.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 9:36 pm

Exceeding the vram required for processing is not a "crash" in the usual sense. It's predictable. If you really must render at 8K (for what, exactly?), it might make sense to find out what GPUs people who are doing the same are using -- rather than relying on speculation or guesses, as above. For the 4K crashes, you could try caching the more intensive fx on the timeline or in Color, and see if you can get through those. And then deliver with the caches.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 9:59 pm

A RTX3090 24Gb can handle 8k but it was the RAM that died for me. I had to up from 64Gb to 128Gb. It would take 67GB of RAM to render a frame. Maybe by more RAM before abandoning your machine?
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 11:26 pm

About a year and a half ago I went from an antiquated 6GB, GTX1660 Super that was giving me fits anytime I tried to do anything mildly demanding, to a used 24GB, RTX3090 that a gamer friend was selling to be replaced by an RTX4090. That $800 for the GPU was like a whole new PC, which at the time was, and still is, an I7-9700K w/64GB memory.

I'll likely wait another generation before upgrading again, both in terms of CPU and GPU...or maybe buy a used RTX4090 when they start appearing on the used market at good prices. Personally, I have no qualms about buying a used GPU...in all my years of building and using PC's, I've never had one fail. Knock on wood!

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Last edited by Tom Stites on Tue Feb 20, 2024 11:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 11:29 pm

John Paines wrote:Exceeding the vram required for processing is not a "crash" in the usual sense. It's predictable. If you really must render at 8K (for what, exactly?), it might make sense to find out what GPUs people who are doing the same are using -- rather than relying on speculation or guesses, as above. For the 4K crashes, you could try caching the more intensive fx on the timeline or in Color, and see if you can get through those. And then deliver with the caches.

I wonder if there is a way for the Nvidia driver to fall back to the system RAM, half of which is not being used at all in the renders... That could solve the problem at the cost of slower rendering. As for the 8K, I was doing a stress test to see if my computer could handle it like my old M1 Macbook could, which proved quickly that it simply can't.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 11:31 pm

Tom Stites wrote:About a year and a half ago I went from an antiquated 6GB, GTX1660 Super that was giving me fits anytime I tried to do anything mildly demanding, to a used 24GB, RTX3090 that a gamer friend was selling to be replaced by an RTX4090. That $800 for the GPU was like a whole new PC, which at the time was an I7-9700K w/64GB memory.

I'll likely wait another generation before upgrading again, both in terms of CPU and GPU...or maybe buy a used RTX4090 when they start appearing on the used market at good prices. Personally, I have no qualms about buying a used GPU...in all my years of building and using PC's, I've never had one fail. Knock on wood!

Cheers!

I suppose I'll wait for GPUs to go down in price again... 2021 deja vu! It is mildly infuriating how much GPUs have gone up in price compared to their percieved performance. The price jump seems to be overdone compared to the performance uplift.

We need user replaceable RAM on graphics cards.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostTue Feb 20, 2024 11:32 pm

bentheanimator wrote:A RTX3090 24Gb can handle 8k but it was the RAM that died for me. I had to up from 64Gb to 128Gb. It would take 67GB of RAM to render a frame. Maybe by more RAM before abandoning your machine?

I may take a look at that but considering during the render, the machine doesn't even use 14GB of system RAM, it may not be necessary. The only time I've ever maxed out 32GB of RAM was while playing VR, watching YouTube, and doing a backup at the same time. Also Topaz AI. That software uses all ram in existence.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostWed Feb 21, 2024 12:52 am

M1, M2 and M3 Macs all use common memory for CPU and GPU they will also swap to the system drive when needed for more memory. So not really possible to compare to PC. Also the source file type is important as that will decide if hardware decode is available. Same for render. How many hardware decoders and encoders are available depends on model of course.

For mullticam editing my M1 Studio Max is effective for 3 camera GH6, GH5S and AX100 editing where this is not possible on the PC. However for a single track the PC is just as good and maybe a little faster in most cases. The difference is the hardware decode.

I was a PC guy until I got the Studio Max and now like the combination. Still prefer the PC but like the silence of the Studio max. Combination is good.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostWed Feb 21, 2024 1:33 am

Now back to the headline:
Macs are not inherently more stable, but it's virtually impossible for any manufacturer to test all combinations of hardware, drivers and OS versions in existence for Windows. So, you become the tester. The only solution to this dilemma is going the other way around, like finding an experienced system integrator for DR, let them build your machine, set it up and don't touch it any more. Don't add anything, don't run other software etc.
As soon as you change some hardware (like upgrading your GPU) or M$ changes anything in the OS (like drivers), you are out in the open ocean all alone. The hardware seller will blame the OS or the drivers, the software manufacturers will blame the hardware.
With a Mac, the number of hardware variations is pretty limited and the OS is from the same company. BM can have enough Apple machines around for decent testing.

And then, as already described, a modern Mac is more flexible in RAM use. No, Nvidia GPUs can't use your system RAM like an Mx processor does. But if it needs to swap to the SSD, it'll ruin your internal drive in the long run. So don't buy a Mac with too little RAM, a rule of thumb would be 1.5 or even 2 GB per GPU core. This doesn't come cheap, and for some tasks a Nvidia 4090 will still be much faster. Finally, a system that is faster in benchmarks, but crashes and needs bug hunting, is not really faster than a slower system that crashes less frequently.

In the end, it all depends on your specific needs, money and knowledge.
Combining the best of both worlds is not a bad idea for a professional installation!
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostMon Feb 26, 2024 6:57 pm

SkierEvans wrote:M1, M2 and M3 Macs all use common memory for CPU and GPU they will also swap to the system drive when needed for more memory. So not really possible to compare to PC. Also the source file type is important as that will decide if hardware decode is available. Same for render. How many hardware decoders and encoders are available depends on model of course.

For mullticam editing my M1 Studio Max is effective for 3 camera GH6, GH5S and AX100 editing where this is not possible on the PC. However for a single track the PC is just as good and maybe a little faster in most cases. The difference is the hardware decode.

I was a PC guy until I got the Studio Max and now like the combination. Still prefer the PC but like the silence of the Studio max. Combination is good.


I've noticed this too... My Mac can run H265 4:2:2 files just fine but my PC acts like it's the end of the world. When rendering, my PC basically becomes fully unusable until the render is finished or cancelled and doing anything causes the render to either glitch, crash, or fail. On Mac this never happens. Noise reduction and actual render speed are slower on the M2 Max, but the stability is so smooth that I could actually be on a browser while the program is rendering!
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostMon Feb 26, 2024 7:24 pm

Uli Plank wrote:Now back to the headline:
Macs are not inherently more stable, but it's virtually impossible for any manufacturer to test all combinations of hardware, drivers and OS versions in existence for Windows. So, you become the tester. The only solution to this dilemma is going the other way around, like finding an experienced system integrator for DR, let them build your machine, set it up and don't touch it any more. Don't add anything, don't run other software etc.
As soon as you change some hardware (like upgrading your GPU) or M$ changes anything in the OS (like drivers), you are out in the open ocean all alone. The hardware seller will blame the OS or the drivers, the software manufacturers will blame the hardware.
With a Mac, the number of hardware variations is pretty limited and the OS is from the same company. BM can have enough Apple machines around for decent testing.

And then, as already described, a modern Mac is more flexible in RAM use. No, Nvidia GPUs can't use your system RAM like an Mx processor does. But if it needs to swap to the SSD, it'll ruin your internal drive in the long run. So don't buy a Mac with too little RAM, a rule of thumb would be 1.5 or even 2 GB per GPU core. This doesn't come cheap, and for some tasks a Nvidia 4090 will still be much faster. Finally, a system that is faster in benchmarks, but crashes and needs bug hunting, is not really faster than a slower system that crashes less frequently.

In the end, it all depends on your specific needs, money and knowledge.
Combining the best of both worlds is not a bad idea for a professional installation!

That, I think is the major problem. I can't afford to have a separate desktop to just run DaVinci resolve with nothing but de-bloated Windows in the background. My Mac even with crazy background software like Pro Tools' licensing programs and Adobe Creative Cloud run smoothly, while on Windows I have to double check that Steam is closed, Creative Cloud is closed, and that no updaters are running.

To add to that, I need to cross my fingers and hope that the drivers for the card won't be bad and cause the interface to start flashing black when I do any VRAM intensive effects and put them into the render cache to save on performance. Meanwhile on Mac, even though NR plays back technically slower than on Windows, I can render cache that while working on something else on the timeline, the way it's SUPPOSED to be.

I don't know. I may try switching over to the Mac for my video project for a while and keep the desktop as a backup in case my Mac bricks itself and I don't have $3000 on hand to replace it.
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostMon Feb 26, 2024 7:33 pm

My 5 cents - what I see here is confusion. Gaming hardware VS workstation VS mac.
Try gaming on a mac - then we can call this discussion even :lol:

Elegant summary:
Uli Plank wrote:In the end, it all depends on your specific needs, money and knowledge.
Combining the best of both worlds is not a bad idea for a professional installation!
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Re: Mac vs PC in terms of Stability

PostMon Feb 26, 2024 7:38 pm

p.sudakovs wrote:My 5 cents - what I see here is confusion. Gaming hardware VS workstation VS mac.
Try gaming on a mac - then we can call this discussion even :lol:

Elegant summary:
Uli Plank wrote:In the end, it all depends on your specific needs, money and knowledge.
Combining the best of both worlds is not a bad idea for a professional installation!

I mean even if I do uninstall Resolve from the PC, I will still game on it of course! It may actually be more stable gaming without all the creative software taking up drive space and running anti-piracy programs all the time.
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