The futuristic design of the Blackmagic eGPU, which Apple is selling to MacBook Pro users who need the graphics processing power of a desktop, makes it look blazing fast.
But fast is an action, not an aesthetic, and in the opinion of one reviewer, photographers thinking of spending $699 should save their money.
Colin Smith, the host of the YouTube show PhotoshopCAFE, paired a Blackmagic eGPU device with his 2017 MacBook Pro. The eGPU sped up some tasks by only a second or less and when he applied a preset to 49 photos, the MacBook Pro was faster on its own (9.78 seconds) than when it was attached to the eGPU (14.73 seconds).
Here’s why a graphics processor may not be a good buy for photographers. The speeds of Photoshop and Lightroom are affected more by CPU, Ram, and SSD than a graphics card. The Blackmagic eGPU is a better fit for professional video programs that utilize external graphics processors for more core features.
So for the photographer who wants post-production to move quicker, the money is better spent on hardware upgrades, Smith said.