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LR & PS GPU utilization on MacBook Pro 13” late 2019 computers

New Here ,
Dec 18, 2019

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What MacBook Pro gpu units are supported/accelerated by Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop CC - specifically LR & PS GPU utilization on MacBook Pro 13” late 2019 computers   

I want to replace my 2012 MacBook Pro with a smaller computer but spend 85% of my screen time in Adobe products and want all the performance possible. 

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LR & PS GPU utilization on MacBook Pro 13” late 2019 computers

New Here ,
Dec 18, 2019

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What MacBook Pro gpu units are supported/accelerated by Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop CC - specifically LR & PS GPU utilization on MacBook Pro 13” late 2019 computers   

I want to replace my 2012 MacBook Pro with a smaller computer but spend 85% of my screen time in Adobe products and want all the performance possible. 

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Mac, Performance

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Dec 18, 2019 0
LEGEND ,
Dec 19, 2019

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See if this Adobe link helps. It has further product links for Lightroom.

https://blogs.adobe.com/crawlspace/author/jeffrey-tranberry?red=a

 

Photoshop link including unsupported cards

https://helpx.adobe.com/uk/photoshop/kb/photoshop-cc-gpu-card-faq.html

 

There is also a separate Hardware Forum should you have any questions on GPU & Metal support on MacOS for video editing.

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Dec 19, 2019 0
R_Photo LATEST
New Here ,
Dec 20, 2019

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Thanks for the link, great stuff to filter through.

Best Regards,

Roger

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Dec 20, 2019 0
Adobe Community Professional ,
Dec 19, 2019

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I use a 2018 13" MacBook Pro with Lightroom Classic and Photoshop, and the 2019 model is not much different. GPU usage with this model is not obvious from reading spec sheets. The graphics in mine are Intel Iris Plus 655, the same as in the 2.4GHz version of the 13" MacBook Pro sold today. Intel Iris Plus is integrated graphics, not discrete graphics. No 13" MacBook Pro has discrete graphics, only the 16" (and old 15") models do. The discrete graphics on the 16"/15" models are far more powerful.

 

Lightroom Classic recommends 1GB of graphics RAM (2GB for 4K+ displays), Photoshop recommends 2GB. So 2GB graphics RAM is good to aim for. Integrated graphics has no RAM of its own, so on a Mac (or Windows) computer with integrated graphics, the graphics RAM is subtracted from system RAM. The maximum graphics RAM possible with Intel integrated graphics is 1.5GB, but it only gets to take all 1.5GB away from system RAM if there's enough left over from the applications that need RAM. Lightroom Classic prefers over 12GB RAM for best performance, so with Lightroom Classic and macOS both wanting their share of 16GB RAM (and Photoshop if you run that at the same time), there may be times when the integrated graphics can't have all the 1.5GB graphics RAM it wants. If all that sounds too technical, the two points are that a 13" MacBook Pro:

  • Will not provide the highest level of GPU performance, just because integrated graphics aren't as powerful as discrete graphics. And performance will suffer more if you edit large images (roughtly over 24 megapixels) or connect external displays that are 4K or higher.
  • Will not provide the recommended amount of graphics RAM, since Lightroom Classic and Photoshop both recommend 2GB or more, but integrated graphics can only provide up to 1.5GB and only when enough is left over after what macOS and applications need.

That said, I'm still happy with my 13" MacBook Pro, it performs adequately for the relatively low raw file sizes of my cameras. Also, when at my desk, I plug in a Thunderbolt 3 external GPU driving a large display. An eGPU provides a Mac with external discrete graphics, in my case a desktop video card with 8GB graphics RAM. This way, my 13" MBP is a wonderfully small and light computer for editing on the go, and at my desk I can plug in more powerful graphics.

 

Below is a screen shot of the Performance preferences in Lightroom Classic, showing that the Intel Iris Plus 655 in the 13" is fully supported for GPU acceleration. But remember that full GPU acceleration for integrated graphics doesn't make nearly as much difference as it does with discrete graphics.

 

Lightroom-Classic-9-and-MacBook-Pro-13'-GPU.jpg

 

Also keep in mind that for both Lightroom Classic and Photoshop, a GPU helps only in areas that are GPU-accelerated, and most of both applications are not. In both applications, CPU and RAM typically help in more areas than the GPU, and the 13" MacBook Pro is limited in both CPU and RAM. I did not choose the 13" MacBook Pro for top performance, but for acceptable performance balanced with portability.

 

Another reason I bought the 13" is that in 2018, the 15" MacBook Pro had become extremely expensive for what you got. That has changed, in that the new base model of the 16" MacBook Pro is more powerful than last year’s top-of-the-line 15", particularly in the GPU (starting at 4GB discrete graphics RAM), representing a much improved value. This is important because of what you wrote:

 

“I want to replace my 2012 MacBook Pro with a smaller computer but spend 85% of my screen time in Adobe products and want all the performance possible.”

 

If performance is that much more important than portability, get the 16" because the performance is so much better. You will never get “all the performance possible” with a 13" MacBook Pro even upgraded to the same price as a base 16" MacBook Pro, but that base 16" is getting rave reviews for performance. I'd recommend adding $400 to upgrade the 16" to 32GB RAM.

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Dec 19, 2019 1
New Here ,
Dec 20, 2019

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Conrad,

Sorry for the delayed reply, I'm traveling and thought I would get an email signaling your reply. However, you get a gold star on this one. It's like you read my mind. There is more useful information in this post than in my last two weeks of reading. Thanks...

 

Best Regards,

Roger

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Dec 20, 2019 0