Despite new CPU options, Apple reportedly questioning future of Mac Pro

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  • MarvinMarvin Posts: 13,537member, moderator
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmm View Post


    Regarding Ivy Bridge, are you sure about that boost in cpu speed? That sounds significantly higher than what Intel has predicted.



    I expect the mobile chips to have a higher jump than the desktop ones. Intel have benchmarks for the desktop chips here:



    http://www.xbitlabs.com/news/cpu/dis..._Partners.html



    but the Ivy Bridge desktop chip has been cut in power by 20W. The mobile chips seem to have around the same power draw. The GPU demos look decent enough so the MBA and 13" MBP will benefit here:



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1-arYrOAJ4

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/5391/i...idge-ultrabook



    I can't imagine that a 17W Ivy Bridge ULV chip would only be 10-15% faster in CPU performance than a 17W Sandy Bridge ULV chip.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmm View Post


    Even if we reached a unified memory model, Intel cannot design quality integrated graphics.



    I didn't mean the Ivy Bridge IGP but dedicated GPUs shipping in Ivy Bridge machines can move to a shared memory design - NVidia's Kepler chips will have a unified virtual memory space shared by the CPU and GPU as will AMD's 7000 series.
  • hmmhmm Posts: 3,348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    I expect the mobile chips to have a higher jump than the desktop ones. Intel have benchmarks for the desktop chips here:



    http://www.xbitlabs.com/news/cpu/dis..._Partners.html



    but the Ivy Bridge desktop chip has been cut in power by 20W. The mobile chips seem to have around the same power draw. The GPU demos look decent enough so the MBA and 13" MBP will benefit here:



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w1-arYrOAJ4

    http://www.anandtech.com/show/5391/i...idge-ultrabook



    I can't imagine that a 17W Ivy Bridge ULV chip would only be 10-15% faster in CPU performance than a 17W Sandy Bridge ULV chip.







    I didn't mean the Ivy Bridge IGP but dedicated GPUs shipping in Ivy Bridge machines can move to a shared memory design - NVidia's Kepler chips will have a unified virtual memory space shared by the CPU and GPU as will AMD's 7000 series.





    Thanks dude . I was unaware of the shared memory design thing. I don't see myself being an ultrabook/macbook air adopter next year, but I can understand why they're pushing it. Intel hasn't been paying a lot of attention to desktops/workstations at all .
  • rbrrbr Posts: 631member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post


    Dragon's Tail kicks ass.



    Marv' torches the Mac Pro.



    It's a workstation in name only. You can buy a PC rig for half it's entry cost that blows it's 'workstation' performance. A 'hollow' label. Any computer that has enough power to do what you want is a 'workstation.' And many PCs offer way more computing power for way less price.



    It's a relic of Dinosaur Apple Computer Past. Those 2k-4k Apple towers are a thing of the past.



    The thing hasn't been updated in almost two years. The gpu is way out of date. The entry model is 2k for a quad core. With a so-so amount of ram.



    It's a joke. Stale as old bread and antiquated.



    The design is old. The price is old. The performance is old. Apple's own attitude tells a tale. Apple could have done a re-design ages ago with desktop chips with decent gpus and had 'mid-tower' 'workstations' that would have allowed those 'hot swap' jockeys to tinker and pretend they have 'worksations' for 'serious' work.



    You can get just as good if not better performance with the top end iMac now...well...much better, frankly. And you get a damn good 27 inch monitor into the bargain. 'Workstation' re-defined in my book. Go to dual processors and the price escalates to a 'money to burn' for extra seconds saved. Good for the minority that actually need or can afford to slice salami like that. :/



    Having said that, I hope the old girl has one more revision. Just for old times sake... (Maybe Apple can set the bar even higher at £2500 for an entry level quad core...)



    Lemon Bon Bon.



    You summarize the problem well. There are a lot more people who want a tower than want a true workstation.



    The problem with the iMac, even with Thunderbolt, is that the ability to add things comes at a fairly steep price. Just look at what an external TB device will cost compared to simply popping a PCIe card into an internal slot if you want to use a PCIe SSD...even when external TB PCIe expansion slot devices become available. I believe it was Belkin which just previewed a TB hub which will allow USB 2/3, FW 400/800, eSATA and TB devices to be connected through the TB port. It will have a MSRP of about $300, but should be popular with people who want to continue using legacy devices.



    Not everybody needs (or can afford) 64 GB or 128 GB of RAM that is frequently utilized in honest to goodness workstations.



    The lack of flexibility of the iMac platform, not to mention the continuing thermal design issues, simply does not sit well with a lot of people even if it will suffice.



    When it comes to professional photographers, videographers, graphic artists and so on, the commitment to the Apple platform is not what it once was, if for no other reason that the delay in getting 64 bit CS out of Adobe. If you apply the logic that we are not making as much money off of Mac Pros as we do off of iMacs you will soon be faced with the question of what do do with the iMac as you don't make as much money off of it as you do laptops. When does the question become we don't make as much money off of laptops as we do off of the iPad/iPhone duo? That sort of downward spiral logic avoids the question, when does the company cease to be relevant except for 'gadgets'? The differences in the Adobe apps between the Windows platform and the Mac platform have continued to shrink. Those folks don't care if the computer has a cute brushed aluminum case or not. To borrow from a TV commercial, they want tuna that tastes good, not tuna with good taste.



    If Apple quits offering the tower I expect that they will soon lose a lot of sales to the medical/edu market who make great use of the power of the Mac Pro to run not only OS X, but Unix scientific apps. Because most universities operate in a mixed computing environment, Apple needs to do something to remain relevant outside the laptop and small device market.



    I could easily see universities configuring Linux/Unix boxes for these users to replace the Mac Pro if Apple fails to keep it current. They might even do Windows!



    Anyway, I am waiting to see what Apple brings out in the way of Ivy Bridge updates. I think it may help with the thermal issues of the iMac. Now if OWC or somebody can figure out the hard drive issues with the cooling fans so that you don't have to get gouged by Apple when the hard drive does fail. $300 for a 2 TB hard drive is just outrageous, even in a post flood environment.



    Cheers
  • momusmomus Posts: 54member
    No one has mentioned hackintoshing?
  • tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 39,474member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Momus View Post


    No one has mentioned hackintoshing?



    Zero stability, support, or upgradability. I'm not surprised.
  • hmmhmm Posts: 3,348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Zero stability, support, or upgradability. I'm not surprised.



    People have claimed to own stable hackintoshes on many occasions. They don't seem so bad these days given the hackintosh community, but it's really better as a hobby. I need a machine to do work, so using a patched solution isn't really an option that I'm willing to consider. I'd rather move to Windows than do that. It's actually somewhat of a tossup between the two. Windows has a few things I can't get in OSX.
  • argonautargonaut Posts: 110member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


    Zero stability, support, or upgradability. I'm not surprised.



    This is the reason I am ditching my 2 x Dell Netbook Hackintoshes and swapping them for a Macbook Air.



    It was a fun experiment while it lasted and they work pretty well, but not being 64bit chips and having to wait on the hackers to produce the next fix for nearly EVERY OSX update was getting a little tiring..

    plus of course the shitty hardware / touch pads you are forced to use



    Come on Intel! Bring on the Ivy Bridge Xeon's ffs

    We want new Mac(Pro)'s
  • hmmhmm Posts: 3,348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by argonaut View Post


    This is the reason I am ditching my 2 x Dell Netbook Hackintoshes and swapping them for a Macbook Air.



    It was a fun experiment while it lasted and they work pretty well, but not being 64bit chips and having to wait on the hackers to produce the next fix for nearly EVERY OSX update was getting a little tiring..

    plus of course the shitty hardware / touch pads you are forced to use



    Come on Intel! Bring on the Ivy Bridge Xeon's ffs

    We want new Mac(Pro)'s



    Supposedly it's a better experience if you pick out hardware with the fewest conflicts possible, which is really only possible in building a desktop. Even then most of the people who make them do it as kind of a hobby (which is probably one of the reasons Apple doesn't care).
  • rbrrbr Posts: 631member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hmm View Post


    People have claimed to own stable hackintoshes on many occasions. They don't seem so bad these days given the hackintosh community, but it's really better as a hobby. I need a machine to do work, so using a patched solution isn't really an option that I'm willing to consider. I'd rather move to Windows than do that. It's actually somewhat of a tossup between the two. Windows has a few things I can't get in OSX.



    That is precisely where I am. I am accustomed to OSX and have used Windows enough that I can get around. Given the choice, I would prefer to stick with OSX. Sadly, Apple's hardware seems more and more restrictive and people say Win 7 really isn't that bad with Photoshop and etc.



    You you mind commenting about the the Windows has that you can't get in OSX?



    Cheers
  • mactacmactac Posts: 313member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RBR View Post


    That is precisely where I am. I am accustomed to OSX and have used Windows enough that I can get around. Given the choice, I would prefer to stick with OSX. Sadly, Apple's hardware seems more and more restrictive and people say Win 7 really isn't that bad with Photoshop and etc.



    Twenty years of using Macs and I'm considering switching because of the limitations of the hardware also. Or rather the limitations in how Apple chooses to package the hardware.
  • hmmhmm Posts: 3,348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RBR View Post


    That is precisely where I am. I am accustomed to OSX and have used Windows enough that I can get around. Given the choice, I would prefer to stick with OSX. Sadly, Apple's hardware seems more and more restrictive and people say Win 7 really isn't that bad with Photoshop and etc.



    You you mind commenting about the the Windows has that you can't get in OSX?



    Cheers



    A couple of the 3d packages and a number of cool plugins for some stuff that I use. I only noticed because I was shopping for this stuff a while ago. On the consumer end some games still aren't released natively under OSX. Having the option of 10 bit displayport is nice too, and I can't get that with OSX (or a mac in general). Apple has been pretty weak on OpenGL implementations too. It's not stuff everyone would need. I could find more things, but I wasn't really looking. It used to be the other way to a degree, in that a lot of stuff I used was best supported on a Mac. Looking at Lion vs Windows 7, I don't have much of a preference there. Windows still has a couple things that irritate me, but I've already figured out most of the workarounds there, so it's less of an issue if I have to switch.
  • lemon bon bon.lemon bon bon. Posts: 2,073member
    I don't find any thing restrictive about using an iMac.



    I'll look forward to the line getting more than 4 cores in the following years and even better mobile GPUS.



    The current top of the line spanks the current entry Mac Pro. Far more of a 'workstation' than it is. That's the thing with semantics, eh?



    I think the Mac Pro should come in 3 flavours from £1000 to £1500 to £2000. Even at that...with the monitor, it would STILL be pricey.



    Apple's big sellers are Laptops and iMacs.



    Apple's positioning of the Mac Pro and the gradual upsell of the price has priced it to irrelevance.



    I think the old Apple comparison picture of a Dell Tower with wires vs the iMac's single power cable said all. We may not like it...but that's Apple.



    The current iMac is way more powerful than the old Blue G3 towers, the G4, the G5s and the entry Mac Pro. And it spanks the Mac Pro for value.



    It's only going to get better as tech' shrinks.



    The dinosaur is on it's way out. But I hope we get one more revision...with a case re-design...and a price axe.



    Lemon Bon Bon.
  • wizard69wizard69 Posts: 11,320member
    With the increase in CPU capability fewer and fewer actually need the Mac Pro to get their work done.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post


    I don't find any thing restrictive about using an iMac.



    I'll look forward to the line getting more than 4 cores in the following years and even better mobile GPUS.



    The strides made with the shift to 22nm are very significant however in the case of GPUs I could see the advantage the new GPUs evaporating to drive higher resolution displays. The cycles of one technology improvement enabling another will go on for some time.



    Quote:

    The current top of the line spanks the current entry Mac Pro. Far more of a 'workstation' than it is. That's the thing with semantics, eh?



    I think the Mac Pro should come in 3 flavours from £1000 to £1500 to £2000. Even at that...with the monitor, it would STILL be pricey.



    Apple's big sellers are Laptops and iMacs.



    Ablely highlighted in the last conference call! The problem is Apple doesn't have a midrange desktop play so they really don't know what the demand is there.

    Quote:

    Apple's positioning of the Mac Pro and the gradual upsell of the price has priced it to irrelevance.



    I think it is more of a case of marketing a high performance workstation to people who don't need it! The Pro is a fine machine for the subset of users that need it.

    Quote:

    I think the old Apple comparison picture of a Dell Tower with wires vs the iMac's single power cable said all. We may not like it...but that's Apple.



    The current iMac is way more powerful than the old Blue G3 towers, the G4, the G5s and the entry Mac Pro. And it spanks the Mac Pro for value.



    It's only going to get better as tech' shrinks.



    The dinosaur is on it's way out. But I hope we get one more revision...with a case re-design...and a price axe.



    Lemon Bon Bon.



    The dinosaur nees to be reborn as a sleeker mammal. Seriously there are many people who would prefer something in the iMacs price class that is more suitable for their needs.
  • hmmhmm Posts: 3,348member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post


    With the increase in CPU capability fewer and fewer actually need the Mac Pro to get their work done.





    The strides made with the shift to 22nm are very significant however in the case of GPUs I could see the advantage the new GPUs evaporating to drive higher resolution displays. The cycles of one technology improvement enabling another will go on for some time.





    Ablely highlighted in the last conference call! The problem is Apple doesn't have a midrange desktop play so they really don't know what the demand is there.



    I think it is more of a case of marketing a high performance workstation to people who don't need it! The Pro is a fine machine for the subset of users that need it.



    Conference call? They took this strategy for a while. If you wanted a tower with any applicable advantages of the form factor, you paid a higher markup. They used this to basically pool users, and it seems like it was more of a necessity when Apple was a smaller company. Needing the latest cpu at all times died out long ago. Even for the guys who use a lot of power, not every generation impacts their workload in a linear manner. In the case of work performed in real time, it's an issue of having enough cpu power to where you're not waiting on the machine or experiencing lag. In the case of things like rendering, transcoding, etc. gains matter, but they have to be great enough to impact the workflow. If you're running something overnight or over the weekend on one machine, shaving off an hour can be meaningless. If it goes from an overnight type of task duration to a lunch break, that makes a real difference. As computer power increases the demands of the software and operating system go with it.



    Over the past few years we've seen relatively flat growth in application demands which has been partially held up by the transition to 64 bit applications in anything truly demanding. Hardware has continued to progress, so it's logical that there's a tendency toward lighter hardware. In a few years from now we may be seeing tablets as the consumer device of choice over where laptops are today. I think we'll retain something with a bit more punch for a while longer. GPUs aren't going away just yet, especially with the use of teslas in supercomputers. I'm not sure the workstation will go away just yet. There are some thin client PCOIP implementations designed for workstation type tasks, so it could happen. I can say that presently none of the other computers supplied by Apple are really suitable for certain types of work, and it's not just a this cpu is faster than that one issue.
  • philboogiephilboogie Posts: 7,285member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Offline View Post


    After my G5 died, I bought a MacBook Pro (early 2008). It's severely underpowered - even with 6GB ram - for the graphic processing I want to do.



    I feel your pain. I stuck with the Mac Pro because of the underpowered laptops. And that includes the Mini as well. The iMacs have a glossy screen, which I don't like (hate actually, love the iPad; hate the screen)



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Offline View Post


    I don't want to switch back to Windows?all of my software purchased since 2006 is Mac. I never liked Windows, anyway.



    I think almost everyone here feels the same. Well, except for those that never had to deal with Windows in the 1st place hehe.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Offline View Post


    If Apple is going to discontinue the Mac Pro line, I would be very dissappointed as there is no other desktop that supports OS X. Then I would buy one of the 2 year old units.



    I understand this. I'm on the 'latest' Mac Pro, mid 2010, and would buy a spare if they would announce it EOL without a new model. Just loike many/some people did with the 30'' ACD.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Offline View Post


    What irritates me is the lack of information which is stopping me from being able to make a decision. I don't expect an answer because if Apple had something to say ? they'd say it. Everything else is conjecture, wishes and hope.



    Better get used to their non verbal standpoint on this, or any issue or product. The fact that they now started to have tech journalists preview the lastest Mac OS X, nee, OS X version is really out of the ordinary.



    (Your post was from Jan 8, so I'm late) Welcome to the forum.
  • welshdogwelshdog Posts: 1,228member
    Just got a marketing email from Apple encouraging me to accessorize my Mac Pro. Not sure if this is good or sad.
  • diggitidiggiti Posts: 15member


    So .... A Month after I break down and buy a Dell Precision we're getting new Mac Pros.


    Ill see You next Go Around Apple ..... I I have work to do

  • tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 39,474member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Diggiti View Post

    Ill see You next Go Around Apple ..... I I have work to do


     


    But you bought a Dell; how're you going to get it done?


     


    *crickets*


     


    Yeah, not my best work.

  • rbrrbr Posts: 631member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mstone View Post





    You can't depend on the Hackintosh route to continuing to work either. Every time this topic comes up I always say to myself what if? Since nearly all of my high end projects involve Adobe CS with the exception of FCP which they already bailed on, I guess I would go to Windows. Pity since I love working on a Mac but that is the only logical choice for me if they discontinue the Mac Pro.



    It would be a hassle to use an iMac for some lower end projects and then switch over to high end Windows machine for heavy duty work. Makes no sense, I would just switch to Windows for work and keep my iMac and MBP for home and on the road. Although I would need to put Windows on the MBP to share the Desktop when away.


     


    +1


     


    AVID is offering their latest for $999 (upgrade from FCP or their earlier products), including all the plug-ins thru June15 which may make converts of the last of the FCP users and it runs on Windows equally well.


     


    I just don't see Apple continuing the Mac Pro line for long and with their characteristic refusal to let customers know there are more reasons to consider making the move now and being done with it.

  • slang4artslang4art Posts: 376member
    Xgrid.
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