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At the risk of beating the dead horse yet again... - Page 2

post #41 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

People like you!

No I'm not being rude. Your first post suggests that you want to spend around $1500 dollars on a tower... and replace it in nine years time!

That's probably not the case, but if it were, so what? I've heard a lot of Apple folks brag about how well made Apples are and how may years they've gotten out of them. I agree, 9 years is pushing it and nobody's making a lot of money on people like me, but there are plenty of desktop owners out there that relpace their towers in three years when faster hardware comes out.


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Steve needs a new jet. Buy a Mac pro.

What was your first statement again?
post #42 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMcLargehuge View Post

Because that market doesn't make any money. Upgradability might have been a purchasing factor ten years ago when component costs were so much less than that of a new computer, but the gap between those has narrowed and the overall cost of a machine has dropped tremendously. Let's look at all the components you listed -

Add a second drive - Several USB 2.0 options. Also, why? There are NAS drives out that are cheap now and allow you to add server space to your network. Why couple it to a single machine if you don't have to?

I want to have a seperate, easy, fast backup (maybe RAID) without an external box sitting on my desk

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TV Tuner - there isn't an external one for OS X unless you can find a used El-Gato Eye TV. There are NO internal solutions. There are some USB Solutions that work with Windows.

Exactly. I can put an internal TV tuner card in a tower

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BR Drive - Logitec has a USB one that works with OS X but it is only for sale in Japan. There are several Windows friendly ones that use USB 2.0 and Firewire.
Standard DVD Burner - Several USB 2.0 options

Again, with the USB. I already have all the USB ports on my computer full and have to swap out a couple constanly since those devices don't like USB hubs.

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Screen - Get a mini, you can have any screen you like (just buy the right adapter and save yourself a day of anger - trust me).

Then I'm relegated to the lowest end computer Apple makes (or the "Steve needs another jet") Pro

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Short of the screen, and non-availability, you can do everything you want with external solutions.

and a whole nest of wires! Wasn't the point of the iMac to be clean and elegant in design? What's it look like with all those external devices and wires all over my desktop? My tower sits on the floor and all I really see is the front and part of the top. I sneed my desk top for other things.

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I am sure Apple knows this and considered it and realized that probably the vast majority of people are more comfortable sticking a USB wire into the back of their iMac or Mini than they are cracking a case and adding a SATA drive.

A lot, I'm sure. But the last time I checked, Dell, Sony, HP, and everyone else that now makes an AIO hasn't abandoned the mid-tower market. There are still a lot of us who don't mind, and find it fun, to tinker a bit. If I had the time, I would build my own. But then there would be the little part of no way to install OS X.
post #43 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigMcLargehuge View Post

Obviously my answer to his question was too beneficent. What I should have said was -

You mid-tower clowns are all poverty-crying, bootcamp using, frustrated first-person shooter addicts. Shut up already.

When you assume, you make an Ass of you. Guess I should have figured this post bring out the "best" Apple Fanbois.
post #44 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

Nonsense. A few years ago the xMac was a huge missed opportunity for Apple. Now though, the desktop market is dying so it probably wouldn't be worth it.

What makes you say that? Yes, a lot more people are buying laptops nowadays, but I bet it's because the price has come down for pretty fast machines, and the people who didn't have one decided to get one. I know I did, but still prefer the larger screen and "real" keyboard of my desktop. But I think once most of the people who wanted a laptop (or netbook) have one, sales will moderate. I still think that as Windows 7 gets released, you'll see desktop sales pick up again.
post #45 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by stonefree View Post

For all the xMac naysayers-

Why is it that Mac usage has only gone up a couple points. Still a ways to go to hit 10%, even in the US! Yet most people agree that OS X is superior to Windows and Mac hardware superior to any PC maker. Sure the higher cost of Macs is a factor, but the real reason is Apple won't sell you the computer you want.

Believe it or not, there is a market for desktops- and I mean computers with desktop components, not laptop components in an iMac or Mini. Desktop components offer superior performance for much less cost. Isn't value for money one of consumers' biggest concerns?

Thank you, Stonefree. Nice to see some reasonable people here, along with Lemon Bon Bon. I don't mind paying more for OS X, but not the kind of money they're asking to put it in a Pro.
post #46 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post

It's ironic when Apple get's called in on making their computers cheaper how they always like to offer consumers 'more value' at the same price.

Re-he-hee-eally, Apple?

Ironic when you put lesser performing, more expensive parts in your consumer desktops and charge two to three times the price over a PC desktop... 'Value'. I like that one. How is it value to put a part in that performs less well and costs twice as much? Or more? Disregarding the OS and a stylish 'boutique' case, how does that work, exactly?

Lemon Bon Bon.

It's the old "Premium Product" marketing scheme. You charge above and beyond the actual extra cost to make the product "Premium" and create the alluring image of specialness, stick the price up there because everyone knows if it costs more, it must be better. Then, never, ever discount. That diminishes the whole image since Premium Products like Ferrari's are never discounted.
post #47 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

Sure... but how big is that market?

I don't know any numbers, but I'll bet Dell, Sony, HP, etc. still sell a lot more of their desktops than their AIOs.
post #48 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by stonefree View Post

Despite the condescending tone of your post, I'll answer you.

The Mini is $600 for a puny 1 gig of RAM and a minuscule 120 GB hard drive. If it used desktop components, it could easily match the $800 model (2gig and 320 GB hard drive) and then some. Leopard runs poorly on only 1 gig of RAM so the average user would certainly see a benefit there. Plus, plenty of "average users" like lots of hard drive space, especially for video. Laptop hard drives are typically about 50% more expensive than a desktop drive with twice the storage. Sure, you can get an external hard drive, but USB drives are very slow (the average user would notice) and having a FW controller on a drive adds $50 to the cost and is still slower than eSATA. And since you'll probably want a backup, that's a second drive (taking up extra space, with extra cables and using an extra outlet) to add to the mix.

Plus there's nothing wrong with a bigger computer for desktops. My desktop sits on the floor out of the way of everything. I personally wouldn't want my computer on my desk, it would take up space. Plus small computers make easy theft targets, especially Macs, so security is a bonus too.

Who says the desktop has to be more expensive? Why not a $750-900 tower that exceeds the higher Mini's specs and includes a keyboard and multi-touch mouse?

Apple's "desktops are dead" mantra is a self-fulfilling prophecy. They have a poor offering of desktops (a nice AIO, a neglected starter model, and an incredibly expensive workstation) and trumpet the relative lack of sales as proof that nobody wants desktops.

I don't get the dismissive attitude to wards gamers either. Gamers are a big market and I'm sure a lot of them would love to own a Mac and set up a dual boot system just for their games.

For me personally, I use my PC (I have a Macbook as well) for music production (not an insignificant niche). A desktop is far better suited for this purpose and the Mac Pro is way overkill. I really wanted to buy a desktop Mac after the Intel switch but since no suitable model was offered I had to buy a PC. I'm sure plenty of others have their own unique reasons for why they want an xMac.

Thank you for a reasonable, well thought out reply and summing up my gripe. If Apple doesn't want my business because they just don't think what I want fits into their business model, let it be so. This and other forums are a place for frustrated consumers to whine a little, and I guess that's what I'm doing. The fact that people are responding (when this has been discussed so many times at length) proves that there is interest in a mid-tower. Apple could have much more of the Personal Computer market than they do if they would listen to customers. I did notice the new Nano sports an FM tuner, a thing many Apple zealots said would never, never happen. Guess I thought that meant they were listening.
post #49 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

Frankly I was a little surprised to see so many models of AIOs available from manufacturers other than Apple.

Why are they building them... and why are retailers offering them for sale?
You say that they just "don't sell" but you have nothing to back it up.

I just went to Fry's website. They list 7. And I have no clue why they are building them and suspect most will disappear from the market, except maybe Sony who seems to be moving toward integrating the computing experience with the television.

Quote:
Originally Posted by piot

I am not trying to prove that AIO's are more popular than towers... just that any PC user who owns one is more likely to be a potential iMac switcher... than an xMac switcher.

Does the fact that Frys also carries such a large amount of cheap (sub $600) PC towers mean nothing? Do you think that PC users who buy those machines are going to rush over to Apple if they release a $1000 or $1500 xMac?

Why would Apple offer only a $1000 - $1500 xMac? For consumer desktops they own the >$1000 market. I've read where Apple has ~ 91% of the >$1000 consumer market. This does not impress me as the high end consumer market is below $1000. To satisfy many in the professional market an xMac >$1000 makes sense, however, for the consumer market <$1000 would be the target, say between $600 - $800.

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Originally Posted by piot

They could if the potential market was large enough but you have shown little evidence that it is....

Only that Apple's market share for desktops is what ~ 10%.

Quote:
Originally Posted by piot

Brilliant!. So the market for the xMac consists largely of people who can either build their own xMac or who can convert any PC to an xMac.

No, you incorrectly extrapolated to a much larger market. The existence of a market for hackintosh shows that many people are willing to put up with the headaches and extra work to get one running and continually seek out online help to obtain drivers, software whatever to maintain their hackintosh. Most consumers are not willing to sustain such an effort, but the mere existence of this market (both the hackintosh and clone companies) shows interest in OS X but not Apple consumer desktops.


Quote:
Originally Posted by piot

So much so that they are buying notebooks, and now netbooks in droves.

Why bring up notebooks in a discussion of consumer desktops. Yes, notebooks are capturing market share, but desktops are not dead. Didn't I read somewhere that a very high % of consumers that own Apple computers own multiple computers, I'm guessing a high % of those are desktops. The desktop market is not dead and is still a multi-billion $ market.

Quote:
Originally Posted by piot

Much of the buying public, indeed most of them don't even know what slots are.

So what? I've never heard anyone, except Mac users in these discussions, complain that their computer had slots, ever. The controller chips can handle slots, the only expense is a few traces on the motherboard and a clip.

Quote:
Originally Posted by piot

In all these threads I have been waiting for someone to tell me how large this potential xMac market is. What's the number of consumer PC tower buyers? How many would likely switch? But it's always the same answer. Geeks, tinkerers, DIY hobbyists, upgraders... now you have added few hundred Psystar customers!

And hackintosh builders, and EFI purchasers and Open computer purchasers and all those consumers that forego buying Apple because their entry level consumer computer comes with out of date expensive laptop cpus, expensive laptop harddrives, no monitor, no keyboard and no mouse and costs $599.

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Originally Posted by piot

Not only do these people constitute a tiny part of the computer market but, on the PC side of things, their numbers also include a high percentage of people who would never buy a Mac.. of any flavour.

Apple will never know, because it would cost them virtually no R&D to offer a consumer tower in the $600 to $800 price range, but they refuse to even try, much to the dismay of consumers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by piot

A can never quite understand why Apple is so busy fleecing it's customers by selling over-priced Mac Pro's and under-specced iMacs that they are stupidly ignoring all the money that's alegedly sitting on the xMac table.

You confuse the argument. Apple is not fleecing the consumer (re: except maybe with the current Mac mini or @ least until it is updated). What Apple is doing is completely ignoring the largest segment of the buying public.
just waiting to be included in one of Apple's target markets.
Don't get me wrong, I like the flat panel iMac, actually own an iMac, and I like the Mac mini, but...........
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just waiting to be included in one of Apple's target markets.
Don't get me wrong, I like the flat panel iMac, actually own an iMac, and I like the Mac mini, but...........
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post #50 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aflaaak View Post

I don't know any numbers, but I'll bet Dell, Sony, HP, etc. still sell a lot more of their desktops than their AIOs.

Well I don't think Sony do. Not sure if they even make a tower anymore. (?)

As for Dell and HP... they are selling more notebooks than desktops. These companies also sell millions of desktop towers to the corporate IT 'tied into Windows' market. Apple doesn't have that luxury.

Even if Dell and HP's AIOs are not mega sellers.... each single one sold means one less potential xMac customer.

Aflaaak, I am not doubting your real need and desire for a mid range Mac tower. And I agree that there are a lots of people that would potentially buy one. Where I disagree is when xMaccers try and justify that need by claiming that Apple is missing out on a huge market.

As Mr H has already noted. Five years ago things were different. Now the average consumer/home/family are buying 5 or 6 hundred dollar laptops.... and even cheaper desktops. These things are so cheap that they simply get replaced and passed down the line.

I am not being a fanboi. I just think with the growth of the Mac and Apple's tight control of their margins and inventory they might just know a bit more about the computer business than everyone on this forum.
post #51 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

...
.... I just think with the growth of the Mac and Apple's tight control of their margins and inventory they might just know a bit more about the computer business than everyone on this forum.

No doubt they know more about it, as I'm sure they analyze it and buy reports on sales numbers.

However, it is well documented the internal arguments over consumer desktop design in which Steve Jobs prefers the AIO design and believes no consumer desktop should have slots, etc.

This may in fact be a philosophical decision on what Apple believes the consumer needs and not what many consumers desire.
just waiting to be included in one of Apple's target markets.
Don't get me wrong, I like the flat panel iMac, actually own an iMac, and I like the Mac mini, but...........
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just waiting to be included in one of Apple's target markets.
Don't get me wrong, I like the flat panel iMac, actually own an iMac, and I like the Mac mini, but...........
Reply
post #52 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

Where I disagree is when xMaccers try and justify that need by claiming that Apple is missing out on a huge market.

It may not be a huge market either, just legitimate part of it

Quote:
As Mr H has already noted. Five years ago things were different. Now the average consumer/home/family are buying 5 or 6 hundred dollar laptops.... and even cheaper desktops. These things are so cheap that they simply get replaced and passed down the line.

I'm speculating that everyone's not going to have a cheap laptop as their only computer, more of an addition to.

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I am not being a fanboi. I just think with the growth of the Mac and Apple's tight control of their margins and inventory they might just know a bit more about the computer business than everyone on this forum.

I'm sure they do, but that doesn't mean there is room for new products. Look at them adding an FM tuner to the new Nano (just after I bought one for my wife!), after everyone said they wouldn't. I have read here on these forums many complaints of Apple's arrogant way of giving people what they think is best for them, not necessarily what people over and over are asking for. I know it's a business, and making money is numero uno, but the way they do it sometimes turns me off. Imagine their market share if they had licensed the Mac operating system years ago.
post #53 of 225
I get the impression that SJ and company read these threads, find out what the faithful want, and then decide NOT to make that particular item because, "The Mac Masses CAN'T tell US what to do."
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post #54 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sequitur View Post

I get the impression that SJ and company read these threads, find out what the faithful want, and then decide NOT to make that particular item because, "The Mac Masses CAN'T tell US what to do."

SJ is Apple's Daddy. He know best
post #55 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aflaaak View Post

It may not be a huge market either, just legitimate part of it

No doubt it's a legitimate part of the market. Apple, however, obviously think it's not a very profitable part.


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I'm sure they do, but that doesn't mean there is room for new products. Look at them adding an FM tuner to the new Nano (just after I bought one for my wife!), after everyone said they wouldn't.

Adding a feature to an existing product is not the same as creating a new product. Perhaps Apple will add an FM tuner to the iMac. \

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I have read here on these forums many complaints of Apple's arrogant way of giving people what they think is best for them, not necessarily what people over and over are asking for.

Yes I have read all those complaints too. However months and years later.... Apple seems to just sell more and more of all the products that people were complaining about. " The iPod is going to be the next Cube".

I think that Apple (like most corporations) 'give people' what is best for Apple.

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Imagine their market share if they had licensed the Mac operating system years ago.

Whole different argument.
post #56 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by piot View Post

No doubt it's a legitimate part of the market. Apple, however, obviously think it's not a very profitable part.




Adding a feature to an existing product is not the same as creating a new product. Perhaps Apple will add an FM tuner to the iMac. \



Yes I have read all those complaints too. However months and years later.... Apple seems to just sell more and more of all the products that people were complaining about. " The iPod is going to be the next Cube".

I think that Apple (like most corporations) 'give people' what is best for Apple.



Whole different argument.

The comment about adding an FM tuner to the Nano was to point out that after a lot of customers asked for something, and after years of stonewalling, Apple finally gave customers what they asked for (and something most other mp3 players had). I was trying to draw a paralell to the idea that people are wishing for a Mid-Tower and Apple has surprised people and "given in" before and maybe, just maybe there was hope. I know it's a big jump from adding a cheap radio to a mp3 player to upsetting Apple's whole product lineup.

The fact that Apple just keeps selling more and more iMacs (albeit without an FM tuner ) doesn't mean they wouldn't be successful at selling mid-towers. You won't sell it if you don't make it!
post #57 of 225
Thread Starter 
Guess I have my answer. I knew it was wishful thinking, but it's been a while since I read anything on the subject and thought maybe things had changed since the global economic mess has changed the way some companies are doing business. Thanks for (most) of the replies.
post #58 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aflaaak View Post

You won't sell it if you don't make it!

And if you don't think there's enough money in it, you won't make it.

Perhaps I'm wrong. Hope you get what you wish for.
post #59 of 225
A souped up mac mini will be nice. That is the closest you are going to get to a x-mac though. The idea of a tower computer people can mess around with is painful for support and drivers.
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Most of us employ the Internet not to seek the best information, but rather to select information that confirms our prejudices. - Nicholas D. Kristof
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post #60 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by talksense101 View Post

A souped up mac mini will be nice. That is the closest you are going to get to a x-mac though. The idea of a tower computer people can mess around with is painful for support and drivers.

Yeah, I don't think it has to be a customizable tower and here's why. Here is what the Shuttle Core i7 'cube' looks like:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U68dEGmkw9Y

It's almost the same width as a Mini and 3 times the height. It's not cube-shaped but you can see from the insides why that is - they have 2 PCI expansion slots. They also use 3.5" drives for hard drives and optical, which is why it's so tall.

Apple could make a Core i7 Cube with the same expansion as the Mini. The problem might come down to the graphics card but I'd be quite happy with a 1.6GHz quad Clarksfield up to 8GB Ram (4 slots) with a 9600M GT and a 9400M (64 graphics cores if Apple can use them together), priced at $999. Easy to open too so extra Ram can be installed.
post #61 of 225
Quote:
Yeah, I don't think it has to be a customizable tower and here's why. Here is what the Shuttle Core i7 'cube' looks like:

Yep. And I bet it doesn't cost the 'bomb' that Apple's consumer desktops cost.

A PC quad is put together for just a few hundred quid these days.

I'd love to see the proper return of the Cube. The mini looks ok. But it should be a £195 'bite sized Mac.' No more. It's outrageously priced at £495. It's £300 overpriced and underspecced.

It really is very easy, Apple. Make the same width as Mini, stack it 3 times higher, put a decent low end Radeon 4850 in it. Put an i7 in it. Price at at £495 for the entry level...and ride those specs upto £995. And with the 'Light' port thing coming around the mountain...you'd have a single cable going into an Apple 24 inch LED display and not the morass of cables like you had with the Cube back in the day.

You'd have switchers swarming over Mac OS X like flies around...

It's not as if these desktop components cost alot. And if PC guys can sort the cooling out on these shuttles, it's a non-issue. Put a bit of Johnny Ive style on the same shuttle ala Mac Cube...and i'd be wak-ta-bating over it until I was blind. Plus. I'd actually buy one.

The whole tower, expandable debate is a little mute for me. I can't see Apple going for it. Despite their environment claims...they clearly want consumers to have a Mac for a few years and throw it away and get another.

Mind you. The only thing I want to upgrade on the tower is the gpu. But even that would be rendered mute if Apple put out an updated and decent spec as they became available.

It maybe a dead horse to Apple. But even at 40% of the worlds PC shipments, that's an awful lot of Cube/Tower sales Apple is missing out on.

Apple's current consumer desktop strategy is baffling to me.

Sure, I like the iMac's simplicity. I have one. I appreciate it's elegance and style. And in PC bootcamp mode, it has as good a framerate on Champions as a PC tower that cost twice as much.

However, that isn't the point.

Apple are using premium components and premium pricing on desktops. They could use faster, cheaper parts and still put them in a stylish Apple container AND pass those savings onto the consumer.

Sure, Apple are selling more computers than ever. But I'd guess/wager they'd sell way more if they wised up and stopped being laggardly on the upgrade cycle.

Apple has a £1400 premium over the 'entry' to quad core capability. That is shocking. (Whether that power if fully harnessed by the consumer/software is irrelevant. What is relevant is that Apple's consumer desktop specs are not competitive. And saying that an AIO or the Mac Pro can't be compared is also mute. That is what Apple puts out...that is where they've chosen, obtusely, to compete. And you go to their closest competitor and they're behind on gpu, cpu, ram usually and bundling the monitor.)

Lemon Bon Bon.

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

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You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply
post #62 of 225
All those years of blaming Motorola...

...and the spec woes are still with us.

Looks like Apple's obtuse simplicity is the one constant.

Lemon Bon Bon.

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply

You know, for a company that specializes in the video-graphics market, you'd think that they would offer top-of-the-line GPUs...

 

WITH THE NEW MAC PRO THEY FINALLY DID!  (But you bend over for it.)

Reply
post #63 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post

Yep. And I bet it doesn't cost the 'bomb' that Apple's consumer desktops cost.

A PC quad is put together for just a few hundred quid these days.

I'd love to see the proper return of the Cube. The mini looks ok. But it should be a £195 'bite sized Mac.' No more. It's outrageously priced at £495. It's £300 overpriced and underspecced.

While I don't see the Mini as being under specced, when they are released, they certainly are overpriced. That overpricing just gets worst as timewearson waiting for the next update.

Generally the best values are found immediately when Apple releases a significantly updated model. Unfortunately the last updates where not significant at all.
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It really is very easy, Apple. Make the same width as Mini, stack it 3 times higher, put a decent low end Radeon 4850 in it. Put an i7 in it. Price at at £495 for the entry level...and ride those specs upto £995. And with the 'Light' port thing coming around the mountain...you'd have a single cable going into an Apple 24 inch LED display and not the morass of cables like you had with the Cube back in the day.

With devices like iPhone I could see people moving back to desktops as a better all around value. Unfortunately Apple doesn't have a mid level desktop machine.
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You'd have switchers swarming over Mac OS X like flies around...

I actually think that the easy switchers have already switched. The trick now is finding the feature to pull in the harder heads. This might require more than just hardware though.
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It's not as if these desktop components cost alot. And if PC guys can sort the cooling out on these shuttles, it's a non-issue. Put a bit of Johnny Ive style on the same shuttle ala Mac Cube...and i'd be wak-ta-bating over it until I was blind. Plus. I'd actually buy one.

A viable desktop can be had for the same price as the current Mini. That for a reasonably packed machine. Yes it would sell, though I'm not going to run out and buy one. Mostly because I need to pace my purchases.

However Apple could force my hand with a system preconfigured with a Fermi based accelerator. In otherwords a desktop optimized for OpenCL.
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The whole tower, expandable debate is a little mute for me. I can't see Apple going for it. Despite their environment claims...they clearly want consumers to have a Mac for a few years and throw it away and get another.

After years of either building or updating my PCs I think the days have passed where doing so is viable outside of a few things. Those things being memory and disk space. However Apple really doesn't have a midrange machine that addresses those two issues.

As a side note I'm more and more frustrated with the so called Green movement. My local grocery was giving away sample and stuff that they claimed where Green products. In any event I tasted one of there samples and frankly wanted to gag or hurl right in the store. I'm just left with the feeling that these people are off their rocker and would eat crap if you told them it was Green.
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Mind you. The only thing I want to upgrade on the tower is the gpu. But even that would be rendered mute if Apple put out an updated and decent spec as they became available.

Actually that might be a third item worth considering for upgrades. That is GPU cards being self contained allows for viable updates. Especially considering that GPUs are still seeing real innovation. Even then we have to acknowledge that shipping a Mac with a state of the art card greatly reduces the viability of an update in the future.
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It maybe a dead horse to Apple. But even at 40% of the worlds PC shipments, that's an awful lot of Cube/Tower sales Apple is missing out on.

Especially if iPhone users begin to realize that an iPhone and a desktop might be a better combination for their needs. Portables are great but they are also limited, a properly designed desktop should be fairly unlimited for a couple of years.
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Apple's current consumer desktop strategy is baffling to me.

Other than to ignore it they have no strategy!!!!!!!
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Sure, I like the iMac's simplicity. I have one. I appreciate it's elegance and style. And in PC bootcamp mode, it has as good a framerate on Champions as a PC tower that cost twice as much.

However, that isn't the point.

Apple are using premium components and premium pricing on desktops. They could use faster, cheaper parts and still put them in a stylish Apple container AND pass those savings onto the consumer.

Sure, Apple are selling more computers than ever. But I'd guess/wager they'd sell way more if they wised up and stopped being laggardly on the upgrade cycle.

They probably don't care. Let's face, as a manager if your sales are going up steadily no one cares either. If sales where to slip you would likely see share holders up in arms.

In any event good sales does give Apple an opportunity to invest in new hardware development. If we are lucky they will have something up their sleeves. The lack of rumors though (desktop related) kinda indicates to me that the public doesn't care either.
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Apple has a £1400 premium over the 'entry' to quad core capability. That is shocking. (Whether that power if fully harnessed by the consumer/software is irrelevant. What is relevant is that Apple's consumer desktop specs are not competitive. And saying that an AIO or the Mac Pro can't be compared is also mute. That is what Apple puts out...that is where they've chosen, obtusely, to compete. And you go to their closest competitor and they're behind on gpu, cpu, ram usually and bundling the monitor.)

Lemon Bon Bon.

I feel your pain Lemon!



Dave
post #64 of 225
There's a story about a girl being continuously pursued by a guy. As long as he pursues, she keeps running away. Finally, wearily, he gives up. When the girl realizes he isn't chasing any more, she turns and chases him. I think that's what Apple's game is.

As long as the faithful continue asking for an xMac or a Mini cum cube, Apple WON'T make it. They're determined NOT to give Mac users what they want. They would lose the game if they did. They are sitting up there in their ivory towers laughing at users (all the way to the bank.)

Stop asking for what you consider the gap in Apple's lineup. When you give up, Apple MAY think, "Hey. We better give them what they want or they'll drift away."

Otherwise, Apple has us right by the short hairs. They control us.
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post #65 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ireland View Post

Yes, that "switch" for want of a better term, has become extremely rapid. It's almost unbelievable.

I could see a move back to desktops and frankly Apple could be caught with its pants down not having a viable product.

What are you saying, you ask. It is this factor: the rise of tablets. First iPhone and hopefully soon a larger tablet from Apple. These could drastically impact what people expect out of portable computing. For those that can deal with the limitations, the use of a tablet type device is far more handy than a laptop. Once people realize that they don't need to have their whole system with them they can move back to more ergonomic desktop installations.

In other words I could see Apple killing laptop sales with the right combination of hardware. A good tablet with sound syncing to desktop machine would make many people happy. I know that currently my iPhone has greatly reduced the need to own a laptop and with a few new features could eliminate the need altogether. While those features might be difficult to cram into an iPhone they would have plenty of room on a larger tablet. In any event an iPhone is a great mobile E-Mail client, cell Phone and a modest web browser all in one machine. That kills a lot of birds with one stone.


Dave
post #66 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. View Post

It maybe a dead horse to Apple. But even at 40% of the worlds PC shipments, that's an awful lot of Cube/Tower sales Apple is missing out on.

Finally someone had the balls to put a real figure on the potential xMac market!

And, unsurprisingly it's the wrong figure.
post #67 of 225
Thread Starter 
Steve Jobs has decided Apple is a hip, cool, upscale company. He thinks if they make (gasp) a mid-priced desktop, they will be too much like some kind of low brow, boring, lower price point PC people.
post #68 of 225
If Apple offered a mid-tower, cons like Pystar wouldn't exist.

I'm glad that for my needs, my MB is enough. For seriously heavy stuff, I have my quad Hackintosh (which I barely ever boot into), which is my primary Windoze gaming machine.

Those of you who need a really powerful tower for OS X on a budget probably will have to settle for Hackintosh.
32" Sharp AQUOS (1080p) > 13" MacBook Pro 2.26GHz. 4Gb RAM . 32Gb Corsair Nova SSD >>> 500Gb HDD
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32" Sharp AQUOS (1080p) > 13" MacBook Pro 2.26GHz. 4Gb RAM . 32Gb Corsair Nova SSD >>> 500Gb HDD
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post #69 of 225
Long answer:

There was a rather interesting interview with Steve Jobs about this somewhere. (But I can't remember where. So don't ask me.)
It went something like this:

The market for a mid-range desktop computer is more and more squeezed out. This model is a dying breed, so why put time and effort into making one. Yes, there will be people who want it, but in the medium and long term not enough to warrant introducing the model.

Jobs' point was that people more and more buy laptops, in actual numbers sold already more laptops are purchased than desktops.
And the remaining desktops more and more fall into just two categories:
- professional systems (that need power and flexibility) and
- small, cheap systems for people who don't want to or cannot afford a laptop.

There is very little middle ground. And if pressed to do one model only it's rather an AIO.

Over the coming years this trend will only get more and more pronounced leaving less and less room for middle and soon even higher end desktops as even professionals move to laptops more and more.


In a nutshell:
That train has left the station. It's too late to introduce an xMac.

And if you really think about it and forward-project recent trends, then you have to agree with that.
You might not agree with the assumption whether such a model today could still be hugely profitable or not, but I do think that the number of potential buyers will shrink more and more in coming years.
post #70 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by hobBIT View Post

Long answer:

There was a rather interesting interview with Steve Jobs about this somewhere. (But I can't remember where. So don't ask me.)
It went something like this:

The market for a mid-range desktop computer is more and more squeezed out. This model is a dying breed, so why put time and effort into making one. Yes, there will be people who want it, but in the medium and long term not enough to warrant introducing the model.

You know I might even remeberance that and it might have made sense in the past. In the future it might not make sense at all. In any event it is not very smart to put to much credit into what comes out of Steves mouth. He may honestly belive what he said at the time or maybe he was just in marketing mode. In any event history has shown that he says what he believes he has to say at the moment to support his products.
Quote:

Jobs' point was that people more and more buy laptops, in actual numbers sold already more laptops are purchased than desktops.

It is hard to argue the numbers here. However this is the past and current situation. I believe that the future can by very different.

Why; iPhone for one as I see it as the start of the tablet revolution. People are beginning to realize that carrying a big laptop around constantly is a real pain and that they don't always need all those apps on the go. All it will take is somebody introducing the right tablet and we will see Laptop sales go down the drain. A corresponding rise in desktop sales will follow.

Overall a powerful desktop coupled to a modest tablet delivers a lot of capability for a low price. Right now Apple may think they control the market and can maintain artificial restrictions on capability to keep people buying laptops. However the thing here is that companies will catch up and deliver tablets that can be marketed in this mode. I can see Nokia being in a position to do so a year or two down the road. It is a given MS will fail here.
Quote:
And the remaining desktops more and more fall into just two categories:
- professional systems (that need power and flexibility) and
- small, cheap systems for people who don't want to or cannot afford a laptop.

There is still a market for performance at reasonable costs. I could see Apple being very successful with a Fermi based OpenCL machine if they can market it at a reasonable price. Right now Apple needs to deliver the hardware required to enable their new software features at a reasonable price. A properly designed xMac can do that for them.
Quote:

There is very little middle ground. And if pressed to do one model only it's rather an AIO.

This I totally disagree with. The middle ground just keeps getting wider and wider. With the next update to the Mac Pro that difference just becomes more massive. The next rev to the Pro could have 24 threads of operation going on. This will leave use with a huge gulf if the next iMacs only have 4 threads of execution. That is a lot of room to play in.
Quote:

Over the coming years this trend will only get more and more pronounced leaving less and less room for middle and soon even higher end desktops as even professionals move to laptops more and more.

Some professionals like to get work done and some like to be trendy. If you where into Video production whichbwould you prefer to compete against, a guy with the latest Mac Pro or a guy with Any Mac laptop?
Quote:

In a nutshell:
That train has left the station. It's too late to introduce an xMac.

It left the station a couple of years ago when the machines and use cases of the day made sense and supported laptop purchases. The future is far less clear now and for many cases an iPhone or a larger tablet makes sense. Sales reps are a good example, I actually believe getting rid of the laptops could increase effectiveness for that craft.
Quote:

And if you really think about it and forward-project recent trends, then you have to agree with that.

Obviously I don't agree. Just as laptops took off a few years ago when their capability meet or exceeded need so to will the use of these smaller devices change the face of computing again. We are just at that point where we are seeing the birth of a new generation of devices. In a way it is like when the Mac was introduced.
Quote:
You might not agree with the assumption whether such a model today could still be hugely profitable or not, but I do think that the number of potential buyers will shrink more and more in coming years.

That is possible, I'm open minded enough to see that. I just see the possibility of a different evolutionary path. One that puts more focus on a powerful desktop machine with very communicative tablets. It sort of gels with Apples Digital hub idea of a few years ago.

We have had three major spins of the iPhone OS already but I actually think Apple has a long way to go here. WiFi is way under used on these devices for example. The biggest limitation right now is RAM, bump that a bit and more features would be a snap.


Dave
post #71 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aflaaak View Post

Will Apple introduce a Mid-Tower, ever???

You geeks just don't get it, do you? Consumer desktops are dead, have been for years. Apple was way ahead of the curve on this and their quarterly earnings prove it.

It's not 1999 anymore. Buy a MacBook or an iMac. That's all you need for your consumer workflows. And how do I know all you mid range tower whiners are just consumers? Because if you were actually pros you'd be happily working on your $2500 Mac Pros rather than wasting your time complaining on AI.
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post #72 of 225
Anyone who says desktops are dead is an idiot. Yes, laptops outsell them now, and will continue to do so. But over 40% of the computers sold are still 'normal' desktop towers.

You're delusional if you think that is "dead"
post #73 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

Anyone who says desktops are dead is an idiot. Yes, laptops outsell them now, and will continue to do so. But over 40% of the computers sold are still 'normal' desktop towers.

...and shrinking.

Besides, I didn't say desktops are dead. I said consumer desktops are dead. Huge fucking difference. Consumers have already moved on to laptops, smart phones, and soon tablets. Hell, even Dell gets it. Look at any of their recent mail order catalogs: nothing but laptops until page 20. The $499 desktops are shunted to the back like the loser products they are.

The traditional desktop tower form factor has been relegated to the legitimately power hungry professional. Those on these boards pleading for a cheapo desktop Mac are not they.
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post #74 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ensign Pulver View Post

The traditional desktop tower form factor has been relegated to the legitimately power hungry professional. Those on these boards pleading for a cheapo desktop Mac are not they.

You say only pros want desktops... then you say the people who want a desktop Mac are not pros. Which is it?
post #75 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Why; iPhone for one as I see it as the start of the tablet revolution. People are beginning to realize that carrying a big laptop around constantly is a real pain and that they don't always need all those apps on the go. All it will take is somebody introducing the right tablet and we will see Laptop sales go down the drain. A corresponding rise in desktop sales will follow.

Dave

I think you are right. And we already see the first incarnation of that trend - the netbook.
The netbooks are not the first and only computer for many users. These netbooks just complement the computer they already own.

I think people will buy new computers for their home in a slower pace than they did before, but I can believe that they will replace the laptops
at their home (they leave it there because of their new netbook) with a cheaper more powerful desktop.
post #76 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by FuturePastNow View Post

You say only pros want desktops... then you say the people who want a desktop Mac are not pros. Which is it?

Both. But the rub is that the tiny minority of cheapo Mac desktop wanting whiners are massively overrepresented on these boards. In the echo chamber of the Internet they are legion. In the real world they are inconsequential.
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post #77 of 225
The single core Mac Pro is about the closest to an xMac we are going to get unfortunately.

Honestly the machine is really poor value for money, they should chop it down to £1,200 or that kind of range, similar to the cost of the previous generation Mac Pro with the single CPU option.
post #78 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

I could see a move back to desktops and frankly Apple could be caught with its pants down not having a viable product.

I don't think that will happen. When laptops get faster and faster, there's no real reason to go back to a static machine. I think the mid-tower market will continue to shrink. What I do think though is that it hasn't shrunk enough to avoid having the great hardware on offer today.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ensign Pulver

That's all you need for your consumer workflows. And how do I know all you mid range tower whiners are just consumers? Because if you were actually pros you'd be happily working on your $2500 Mac Pros rather than wasting your time complaining on AI.

That's quite a naive way of looking at professionalism. You think that businesses who are going under all over the place aren't full of professionals? Professional is not equivalent to wealthy.

Some of the finest minds in the world are on the lowest salaries in universities and hospitals because they care enough to make the world a better place and further their chosen specialty instead of padding their bank balance. Presumably those you call professional - the Big Brother celebrity or the stock market millionaires or the investment bankers - are the only ones who deserve a decent machine?

I'd be interested to see what machine the doctor who gave Jobs his Liver uses. I'd bet it's a Dell tower. Every hospital I've been in, it's all Dell mini-towers. It's not entirely about price but cost of ownership.
post #79 of 225
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ensign Pulver View Post

Consumers have already moved on to laptops, smart phones, and soon tablets.

My Mom bought a nice 15" laptop, which I use at work (for the time being). It has a crisp 1280 X 800 LED screen, and a nice lighted keyboard that reviewers seem to like. It's waaay faster than my old home desktop.

However, I would (and will when Mom takes it back) ALWAYS rather be using a desktop. I hate typing on flat laptop keys, the screen is sometimes too difficult to read (depending on website) and too small to "blow up" without having to scroll everywhere. A real pain if doing photo editing. Portability isn't a factor 99%of the time, but if it did get moved regularly, I would hate it more because that means unplugging the printer, and the external HD, and speakers, and memory card reader, and the modem, and the power cord. Not to mention, my desk is covered with wires going every which way. Yeah, I suppose a dock would solve some of this, but then why spend extra money to miniaturize inferior components into a laptop form factor?

If you need portability or space is a premium, a laptop is great since they're fast and reliable now. And, like you said, Smart Phones and tablets and netbooks are becoming great tools for those who need the extreme portability. But for me, I prefer a faster computer where I can pick my own freaking screen and size, I don't have all my peripheral wires everywhere, I'm not having to figure out if the battery should be on always charge, or let it run down and recharge it, where the 7 in one card reader and backup HD is built in, where I'm not worrying if I'm blocking the exhaust port so the thing doesn't overheat. To sum in up, for me, after using a laptop during the day, it's a pleasure and relief to use my desktop when I get home.

Quote:
The traditional desktop tower form factor has been relegated to the legitimately power hungry professional. Those on these boards pleading for a cheapo desktop Mac are not they.

Don't be so myopic. Besides, we all know a Mac mid-tower would be anything but cheapo. I was just hoping for reasonable. But I can see the Apple has decided they can't run a profitable company, or maintain they're carefully crafted image of Computer Builders to the Hip and Cool People, by catering to potential switchers like me.
post #80 of 225
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

In the future it might not make sense at all. [...]
iPhone for one as I see it as the start of the tablet revolution. People are beginning to realize that carrying a big laptop around constantly is a real pain and that they don't always need all those apps on the go. All it will take is somebody introducing the right tablet and we will see Laptop sales go down the drain. A corresponding rise in desktop sales will follow.

You made some interesting points.

I would like to know more about why people really buy laptops. A machine's performance is not the only decision making factor.
From my own experience with friends and family, they switched to laptops mainly because they didn't want to dedicate a whole desk in their home to a stationary computer system. As simple as that. They wanted a system they can pack away, out of sight, when not in use. No midrange desktop will ever give them that. Even if they buy an iPhone/tablet at some point, they'd still prefer a companion system to be out of sight when not in use.

You also pointed to the unfortunate trend of the widening gap in performance between desktops and laptops.
16 vs 2 threads is certainly something to worry about.
But this gap will close soon I think once denser and lower power CPUs hit laptops. Once 24 threads are introduced in desktops, laptops should have at least 4 if not 8 threads. 24:4 or 24:8 is already a much better ratio than 16:2.

Yet do consumers really need all that power? If a 600MHz iPhone/tablet (or a netbook) is sufficient for most tasks, the few remaining tasks should be fine with a dual-core at 3GHz, and even more so with 4 and 8 threads. Unless you are a professional video editor. At which point you buy a high-end desktop and are not interested in an xMac either.


To me it also seems that most laptop 'upgraders' just want a bigger screen. At which point an external second display is probably enough. Or an iMac.

There are statistics about what consumers actually upgrade in their mid-range desktops. Turns out that the vast majority never upgrades anything and makes no use of the internal expansion slots for HDs or PCI cards. So why offer them?

Of course there are users who will use them, there will also be Mac users who have good reasons for getting an xMac, but the question remains will these be enough for a niche computer maker to introduce a product for a niche user group?


Two other trends working against a midrange desktop machine:

Cloud computing
Yes the term has been abused and ridiculed ad nauseam, but I know people who actually started using this to get more performance on demand. Their decision was to stay with a laptop and use the cloud for 2D/3D render performance. Whenever they need some heavy number crunching they rent a cloud service that does this for them. That way they get 256 or more cores if they need them.

So instead of your future scenario of tablet plus desktop I see a tablet which can plug into a desktop monitor for more screen real estate and tap into the cloud for more heavy lifting on demand. Mobile Me could easily offer this service for iMovie and iDVD.

Light Peak
Apple clearly has some interesting design ideas in mind for pushing Light Peak.

Once SSDs become cheaper and more popular it is quite imaginable that soon 3.5" HDs are a thing of the past and 2.5" will be the new standard even for most desktops.

So imagine a 30" Apple Cinema Display with built in bays for 2.5" HDs and a Superdrive/Blu-Ray drive connected to your laptop via a single Light Peak cable.
This merges a display plus TimeMachine backups plus DVD drive into a single monitor.

And without the Superdrive laptops could finally have enough room for a user-upgradable GPU or even dual GPUs.
A laptop with upgradable GPU plus 'bay monitor' could be a much more appealing solution to most potential xMac buyers.
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