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Apple tells reseller new Mac Pro coming in spring 2013 - Page 6

post #201 of 516
I can't imagine Apple designing the new Mac pro thinking about size, footprint, weight and all that. I believe they have always designed their computers for its functionality, even if they made colored eMacs and all that. Yes, they kept on redesigning the chin of the Macintosh, but it was there for a reason. The Mac Pro also has been designed for its use: the width comes from the ODD. They can put it in vertically, but I agree with Solipsism and they'll drop it altogether.

Then the HDD's don't need to take up all the space the current width has to offer. They can make the trays shorter, or use 2.5" discs, creating a more narrow chassis, or possibly place them on a tray, like the current CPU/RAM tray. If there are going to be HDD's in there in the first place. Because of the vast amounts of data 'professionals' use the current 16TB max might be too small for some/many/most (I really don't know) anyway, they could have the MP simply run on a mirrored 128GB flash drive for the software and have people connect it to a 14 HDD (or whatever amount) chassis (19"?). Possibly connected over fiber. Users not needing all that storage can simply use an external HDD connected over TB/USB (again, I agree that they'll drop FW).

PCI cards will be requested from the pros, so they'll need to accommodate for that. I have no idea if the current amount of 4 is sufficient for the pro market, but if it isn't now, I presume businesses now simply buy another MP and therefore the number increase won't be needed in the new model.

Expandability has always been a key selling point, and I don't think they'll ever change that. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if they 'solder' the CPU's to the motherboard and have one huge riser card holding more RAM sticks than the current 8 (OSX will need to be updated for the current limitation of 96GB)

Sol makes a good case pointing out the weight of the Mac Pro, for Apple's benefit. Mainly. But I don't think they'll make it lighter because of shipping costs; I presume that's all calculated in its retail price. They don't make their shipping costs higher when adding HDD's, going from 1 to either 2, 3 or 4 while each disk weighs 650 grams / 1.4 pounds
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post #202 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkdefender View Post

Not to mention also that on the Apple website it says that the Mac Pro weighs 41.2 Pounds! and that is a lot of weight for a computer compared to their Macbook Airs'.

What has that got to do with anything? The PowerMac / Mac Pro has always been the heaviest one. Understandable, with a 950W PSU and all that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkdefender View Post

Times have changed though... I never knew that a G4 Cube existed until two days ago and I found it extremely interesting...

It was inspired by its predecessor, the NeXT Cube:


Personally I think the NeXT Cube was way more usable than Apple's, but that's me. It was really underpowered while 'the Internet was designed' on the one from NeXT.
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post #203 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkdefender View Post

Not to mention also that on the Apple website it says that the Mac Pro weighs 41.2 Pounds! and that is a lot of weight for a computer compared to their Macbook Airs'.

You win the award for dumbest theorized juxtaposition of the year. It would make more sense if they were aimed at the same consumers. The price alone ensures that is not the case, and if anyone is debating macbook air or mac pro, they have a very poor understanding of their own needs. I could understand a bit more if it was a 1,1 that happened to be overkill at the time. Even then software almost always gains weight over time, so even with minimal growth catching up to current software revisions would probably mean at least a macbook pro. I say current software revisions because new Macs won't support older versions of OSX and older software often has critical bugs on newer versions of OSX. You have also chosen to ignore that the mac pro may not be the only thing anchoring them in place. Displays and other peripheral devices won't travel with you even if the Air does. For a lot of people the notebook as a desktop thing is just a matter of consolidation, and then there are others that trick themselves into believing that they will use it somewhere beyond a single fixed location.

post #204 of 516

I'd be on a 8x8 Pro.

 

It's up to Apple really.

 

Unlike the 1st Cube, 

 

if we stack a few minis on top of one another...you get 8 cores+ and more than enough room to put a 680mx if the back of my iMac is anything to go by.

 

Alu Cube annodised?  

 

Sure.  I could go for that...

 

8x8 bigger than the original Cube?

 

Plenty of room there to reinvent the 'workstation' (though I think the iMac and retina Macbook already have...)  into a more compact 'box.'

 

Augmented by Thunderbolt.  It's not like you need to keep everything in a tower anyhow.  Ergo the 'nest' of cables.

 

I'm sitting in front of my iMac.  It's an awesome workstation.  And I guess more and more people than ever before are using an iMac for what they needed a 'Pro' for.  The sales figures back that up.  1 million iMac desktops sold.  The iMac sits on a desk with a small footprint.  In the dark years, Apple never used to sell that many computers total.  Now it's all laptops ofc.  But the iMac is no sales slouch providing Apple can get them into customer's hands.  I had to wait just over a month for mine.

 

Lightning fast to boot.  Eats through web pages and Photoshop faster than towers of yesteryear.  3d?  More than ample.  Games?  Yet to try it.  But I'm sure the '10th fastest gpu' will cope.

 

But I'm definitely open to a 'pro' Cube.  Just take off the monitor from the iMac BTO.

 

You have £1450 i7 680 Mx with 8 gigs of ram.  I don't think that's too bad.  Dual processor config at £1850 and up.  While not revolutionary...it would get us back to sane pricing...and be in line with less materials and cheaper freighting.

 

If it was me?  I'd have a mini tower picking up right where the Mini leaves off.  £999.  Include decent gpu, ram and i5.  Then BTO i7 and gpu 680mx takes you to £1450 duals at nearer £1850+  Or an 8 core system starting at that...and a dual core at 2k plus.  

 

If they can give billions to share holders...how about giving the customers a break.  Who've seen price rises on Macs here in the UK since 2008.  Triple dip recession...s....and all that.

 

If they want to sell more 'pro' towers?  Democratise it.  Simple.  Like they did with iPod, iPhone, iMac.  Mini (which is a much cheaper cube anyhow...)

 

It's up to Apple.

 

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.)

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post #205 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by darkdefender 
It's an 8 by 8 inches model computer with the power of the Power Mac G4 in the style of an iMac 2K.
Could a 12 Core Processor and 16 gb of ram go in such a small space? I mean they can if they can put 16gb of ram inside their Retina Macbook Pro's right?

They'd be able to fit up to 12-cores and at least 64GB of RAM into an 8" Cube. There are some external designs here:

http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/152825/future-of-mac-pro/120
http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/154628/os-x-10-8-3-beta-supports-amd-radeon-7000-drivers-hinting-at-apples-new-mac-pro/80

and internal design here:

http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/154628/os-x-10-8-3-beta-supports-amd-radeon-7000-drivers-hinting-at-apples-new-mac-pro/160

That design allows for up to 2 Fusion drives (2 x SSD blade + 2 x 3.5" HDD), 2-3x full-height, half length PCI cards, a single Ivy Bridge EP CPU (up to 12-core) and at least 64GB RAM. A GPU would sit in one of the PCI slots, which would be double-wide but would have to be specially made (just a new board design with the same processors).

The extra half-length slot would allow the addition of an expansion card or the connection of a beakout box at full x16 speed, which can hold as many as 16 PCI cards depending on the box. The use of the expansion box would be the exception.

A lot of the bulk and weight in the Mac Pro comes from the cooling equipment. The shipping weight for each heatsink is about 4lbs and the retail price of each is over $200. The cooler I mentioned in the above links can cost as little as $10 and weighs less than 0.5lbs. There's a long technical paper here describing it and its efficiency vs CPU coolers like the ones in the Mac Pro:

https://ip.sandia.gov/techpdfs/Fundamentally%20New%20Approach.pdf

Even if they stuck with mostly the same parts they have now and dual CPUs, adding a new cooling system and removing the optical drives would massively reduce the size, weight and price of the machine. It would end up at the very least around the same weight as the 27" iMac and $300 cheaper back to its original $2199 entry price. If they could hit $1999 for a quad, even better and increase 2-cores every $500 up to $4000-4500 for a 10-12-core.

I'd like to see it transition to Thunderbolt or some other external PCI standard and get rid of the slots when they can provide a cumulative 50Gbps bandwidth. 4 individual TB ports at 10Gbps each is almost enough but at 20Gbps in 2014, it certainly will be. They'd just solder the GPU chip to the motherboard and share the memory in some way, possibly with a cache of fast memory and this works better for heterogenous computing.

People will have a reason to upgrade them simply to get a new GPU and this keeps the numbers high for Apple and the margins don't have to be so excessive. That kind of form factor will have a lasting appeal too.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil 
I like to say 7.7"x7.7"x7.7" makes sense, as that's the footprint of the Time Capsule and Apple likes matching up footprints

I think 8 is symbolic as everything in computing is base-2 and 2 cubed is 8 but in practical terms you can't fit multiple 3.5" drives side by side in 7.7" as they are 4" wide.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX 
The Mac mini is the replacement for the Cube and it's far more successful than the Cube ever was.

In some respects it is but the Cube was intended to be the best of the Pro with the best of the iMac. The Mini has too low a power/thermal enevelope to hold the same computing power. It punches way above its size and price but it can never hold a 680MX like the iMac or a 6-core+ CPU like the Mac Pro and a Cube can do that.
post #206 of 516
Excellent post, excellent pdf you're sharing here. Thanks much.
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post #207 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

It was inspired by its predecessor, the NeXT Cube:


Personally I think the NeXT Cube was way more usable than Apple's, but that's me. It was really underpowered while 'the Internet was designed' on the one from NeXT.

I always loved that design even though a less cube-less tower is more practical (Allen's Rule). If they added a cube I'd be all for it but I think that is the last thin to expect from Apple.


edit: typos and uh-ohs
Edited by SolipsismX - 2/18/13 at 9:11am

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post #208 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I always loved that design even though a less cu-less tower is more practical (Allen's Law). If they added a cube I'd be all for it but I think that is the last thin to expect from Apple.

I certainly hope the next MP won't be a cube. As cool as it looks, the 'regular' old school desktop design is not for nothing the mostly designed one. As much as a friend of mine would like it though; he has the one from NeXT and Apple.

Thanks for Allen's Law forgot what it was called.
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post #209 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. 
You have £1450 i7 680 Mx with 8 gigs of ram.  I don't think that's too bad.  Dual processor config at £1850 and up.  While not revolutionary...it would get us back to sane pricing...and be in line with less materials and cheaper freighting.

If it was me?  I'd have a mini tower picking up right where the Mini leaves off.  £999.  Include decent gpu, ram and i5.  Then BTO i7 and gpu 680mx takes you to £1450 duals at nearer £1850+  Or an 8 core system starting at that...and a dual core at 2k plus.

We have to be realistic when it comes to pricing though, we know roughly what their gross margins are and therefore what their costs are to build. Typically they've been working at 40%+ gross margins so the build cost of the original Mac Pro at $2199 had to be around at least 0.6 x 2199 = $1319 (£852 - no tax).

Assuming the same base costs, it looks like this has gone up to (2499-1319)/2499 = 47% gross.

The price you are suggesting for the same parts is perfectly achievable but Apple has to justify the price drop. The main reason would be for marketshare. The workstation market isn't large and Apple already has a sizeable chunk of it. At best they'd take some of HP's and Dell's sales away so they'd drop margins and increase volume but their net profit would probably end up the same so they are doing more work for the same profit.

If they price it into the desktop market range, there is a bigger chunk of desktop owners they might get over to the platform and I could see these people being attracted by a Cube form factor. It would however cannibalize the iMac to some extent and increase the sales of their competitor's displays.

I think they can safely start the Cube at $1999 (£1699 inc tax), same as the highest non-custom iMac and it would have a quad-core Xeon with 6GB RAM and the equivalent of a Radeon 8770 or Geforce, which can be upgraded to one higher model of both AMD and NVidia (3 cards total). FirePro and Quadro would be left to the manufacturers to build and support because they have so little market appeal.

It would effectively be a page with one Cube on it and you'd just spec out the options and have the Server software as BTO just like every other Mac and you'd pick the number of cores 4,6,8,10,12 and RAM from 6-64GB, one of 3 GPUs and it would start with a single 1TB and they'd offer up to dual 3-4TB Fusion with up to 2x768GB SSDs. The keyboard and mouse might have to be shipped separately so it might be best to make people buy them separately, which helps get the price down. If they get used in a server environment, you just end up with loads of peripherals that won't get used anyway.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lemon Bon Bon. 
If they can give billions to share holders...how about giving the customers a break.

I know, it's not like we ever complain about anything. Well, it's not like we sue them. Ok maybe some people take out class action lawsuits but we definitely don't make money off them like shareholders and so they should treat us better. We sacrifice for their benefit.
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX 
I always loved that design even though a less cube-less tower is more practical (Allen's Rule).

The majority of the heat in the machine wouldn't dissipate from the surface though like it does with humans, it gets blown out the back (humans blow hot air out the back for different reasons - analysts earn a living from it). Cold air is sucked in from the front like with the current one, the air travels quickly through the cold metal grating, it gets warmed up by the components, which have their heat spread into the airflow and it gets drawn out the back.

The smaller the internal volume, the less cold air there is to get in so it has to move faster (faster, louder fans) or the parts just have to generate less heat (lower power envelope). With a better cooler, they don't have to try nearly as hard to spread the heat into the airflow so the Cube design shouldn't even require faster fans.

The way heatsinks work now is to stick a piece of very conductive metal onto the chip with thermal paste to draw heat away from it by keeping the metal it's being drawn into very cold but getting that heat away from the heatsink as the above PDF describes is limited because all of the surfaces have a layer of dead air leaving it to move heat through molecular diffusion. The Sandia design fixes this dead air problem.

I figured one problem with the Sandia cooler might have been relying on it being upright to balance the air gap but in the Sandia paper, they gave the example of the hockey puck that relies on gravity to maintain the gap and said their cooler will work in any orientation. It will need some tight mechanical tolerances overall but I think for a company that puts atomic layers of anti-glare coatings in their displays and fits iPhone parts accurate to a few microns, it should be a stroll in the park.
post #210 of 516
humans blow hot air out the back for different reasons - analysts earn a living from it

LOL!
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post #211 of 516

The problem with the G4 cube was that it was simply not priced realistically.   Maybe it cost a lot to make, I really don't know but it was rejected by many of us due to the price performance equation.   In fact the cube and a few other Apple machines where responsible for me taking refuge in the Linux world for a long time.  

 

As to the smaller and lighter Mac Pro I agree totally, the massive chassis for no reason will die.  Further people can discount weight as an issue but they don't grasp the reality of the green movement.   We in the USA can resist some of the nonsense but the reality is Apple is global and anything that leads to lower shipping weights and volumes will pay off big time in the future.  

 

It makes sense to do in the optical but also the 3.5" format bays.   For one any Mac Pro worth a damn ought to have its primary storage sitting on a PCI Express card and of course be solid state..   The actual form factor of that card can be just about anything but Apple should either set a standard or using an industry standard one.    Well engineered printed circuit boards can be designed to minimize physical space while maximizing thermals.  Supply the new Pro with four of these slots and you end up with a machine that will remain viable for a very long time.  

 

I never really got into FireWire.   It was never fast enough to consider for high performance systems and USB does fine for low end solutions.  Frankly FireWire can die.  I wouldn't be surprised that the same people that complain about he death of FireWire will be the same ones that complain about no optical.   It is technology folks, you either keep up or stay in the past with your slow technologies.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


I like the idea but I don't think it'll happen. I doubt they've considered that as an option in years. The Mac mini is the replacement for the Cube and it's far more successful than the Cube ever was.

I think the next Mac Pro will be smaller and lighter than the current design. Now, just like with the iMac, people will say that they don't care if the device is smaller and lighter and that is actually works against what is possible in the smaller volume case but they aren't looking it at from Apple's PoV. Reducing weight and volume reduces material and shipping costs from A to Z. This adds up and Apple clearly cares about that.

I would guess there will be no internal ODD in the next Mac Pro (or whatever it may be called). This reduces a good portion of the internal space. if you want to use an ODD you can get an external drive which professionals that need them will likely have anyway.

I would doubt they will use those SATA connections for additional HDDs but instead rearrange everything to make it more compact. I'd wager on a smaller PSU but with the same performance. I would expect two riser cards with 4 RAM slots each and 3 PCIe expansion slots as well being a dual CPU board with a single CPU option.

Finally, I think FW will go but at the same time this will upset many. I think it'll be worse than the ODD going away. My reasoning is that FW800 chassis holding a 3.5" @ 7200 RPM HDD aren't going to benefit from being replaced by expansive TB chassis and cables. They could use USB 3.0, which I think Apple will push but they'll still want their FW800 to work seamlessly. Perhaps Hopefully Apple will bend on that port being retained a little longer but they never moved to FW1600 or FW3200 and everything else has dropped it so I think it's toast.
post #212 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


I certainly hope the next MP won't be a cube. As cool as it looks, the 'regular' old school desktop design is not for nothing the mostly designed one. As much as a friend of mine would like it though; he has the one from NeXT and Apple.

Thanks for Allen's Law forgot what it was called.

Ok what does Allen's Law have to do with a computer?    Especially in this day and age when much of the power in a PC is released from a very small area.    In fact the big challenge for decades now has been to figure out how to remove heat from a device a few mm thick and several mm square.   Most tower designs are terrible when it comes to this issue of heat removal.  The Mac Pro is better than most towers I will give you that, but it still stacks parts vertically resulting in heat rising from bottom to top and in the case of the Mac Pro, less than ideal disk cooling.  

 

As to a cubish Mac Pro I've yet to hear a good argument against such a machine.   The reality is such a machine can be engineered to actually solve some of the current Mac Pros issues.  Done right a good cube design would minimize the wasted volume of the current design.   This would allow much high density installations when that is needed.   Further a cube, especially a much lighter one, allows for far more flexibility in placement in ones work space.  

post #213 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Ok what does Allen's Law have to do with a computer?    Especially in this day and age when much of the power in a PC is released from a very small area.    In fact the big challenge for decades now has been to figure out how to remove heat from a device a few mm thick and several mm square.   Most tower designs are terrible when it comes to this issue of heat removal.  The Mac Pro is better than most towers I will give you that, but it still stacks parts vertically resulting in heat rising from bottom to top and in the case of the Mac Pro, less than ideal disk cooling.  

As to a cubish Mac Pro I've yet to hear a good argument against such a machine.   The reality is such a machine can be engineered to actually solve some of the current Mac Pros issues.  Done right a good cube design would minimize the wasted volume of the current design.   This would allow much high density installations when that is needed.   Further a cube, especially a much lighter one, allows for far more flexibility in placement in ones work space.  

What doesn't it have to do with computing? My usage is relation to Apple using the metal case for conduction which helps alleviate the need for faster spinning fans, larger fans, etc, which helps reduce power needs. Not eliminate but help reduce.

But that is beside the point if you think that Allen's Rule does not exist in computing. Have you ever seen a heat sink? The entire design is to increase the surface area of the sink as much as possible so that more heat can be dissipated faster. That is Allen's Rule in a nutshell.

Cubes on and under a desk aren't likely as useful as you aren't likely to need more a certain amount of area to the front or back for ports and drives. You can't easily place it on or under a desk with room for a monitor or your feet and turning ti 90° may results in issues turned the other way. If a cube is 2x as wide as the current design but the internals are still about 1/2 that internal space how is that space being utilized properly when your 5" HDD drive is now sitting 12" deep in the chassis. It it opens up down the centerline then it's not a big deal but how would that be likely. If anyone could figure out how to make it work I think it's Apple but there is a reason this is not a common design and why Apple's Mac Pro is just wide enough to fit one HDD from side-to-side.
Edited by SolipsismX - 2/18/13 at 11:45am

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post #214 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

As to the smaller and lighter Mac Pro I agree totally, the massive chassis for no reason will die.

 

I still don't understand comments like this.

 

The current Mac Pro isn't massive 'for no reason' at all. If you have dual processors, a Superdrive, 4 hard drives and 4 PCI cards - which is what the unit is built to accommodate -  you need every inch of that chassis to ensure the components don't boil.

 

Apple can make a future unit much smaller by ditching the Superdrive, going with SSDs only and shifting PCI expansion to a breakout box.

 

But to say that the current Pro's size serves no purpose is just plain wrong.

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post #215 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


Aha, someone who misses the DVD drive. Apple was early with dropping the floppy, too. Many people seemed to like that change. Just like many liked it when Apple was an early adopter to add USB to their Macs. Perhaps you need to let go of the old notion, and embrace the new?

 

I deal with several regulatory departments at both the local and federal level of government and with various contractors. They require electronic files to be delivered on CD/DVD.

So yes, I do use them, I need to use them and will continue to use them as long as the departments I deal with require them.

post #216 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post

You win the award for dumbest theorized juxtaposition of the year. It would make more sense if they were aimed at the same consumers. The price alone ensures that is not the case, and if anyone is debating macbook air or mac pro, they have a very poor understanding of their own needs. I could understand a bit more if it was a 1,1 that happened to be overkill at the time. Even then software almost always gains weight over time, so even with minimal growth catching up to current software revisions would probably mean at least a macbook pro. I say current software revisions because new Macs won't support older versions of OSX and older software often has critical bugs on newer versions of OSX. You have also chosen to ignore that the mac pro may not be the only thing anchoring them in place. Displays and other peripheral devices won't travel with you even if the Air does. For a lot of people the notebook as a desktop thing is just a matter of consolidation, and then there are others that trick themselves into believing that they will use it somewhere beyond a single fixed location.

I agree. That was dumb to say... but all I was pointing out it's 41.2 pounds heavy... and as others pointed, if a product weighs less and is smaller, it can be manufactured more, and shipped easier... It was nothing to do with Macbook Air's... but you have to take into consideration the impact making a 41.2 pound machine is doing to the earth. That's like buying a Hummer when you could buy a Honda Insight... even if the mileage on this metaphoric hummer was better than the Honda, people would still prefer the Honda over the Hummer because it's smaller and fits into places better. I mean look at this...

 

Compared to the Monster that is the Mac Pro

 

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post #217 of 516
Originally Posted by darkdefender View Post

AppleMark

 

And yet people buy PC towers just as big or larger. The Mac Pro is classed as a minitower!

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post #218 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

And yet people buy PC towers just as big or larger. The Mac Pro is classed as a minitower!

There are a handful of cases that are larger. The Mac Pro's size is really quite normal for a the heavier dual socket workstations, which I've had a few PC workstations in the past of a similar size. The G4 cube is hardly a fair comparison as it is only a single socket machine.

Most PC towers sold are smaller on each dimension, but they're not dual socket systems.
Edited by JeffDM - 2/18/13 at 2:58pm
post #219 of 516
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post
…it is only a single socket machine.

 

It's entirely possible that this is the future of Apple's pro desktop. Hmm…

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post #220 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTac View Post


I deal with several regulatory departments at both the local and federal level of government and with various contractors. They require electronic files to be delivered on CD/DVD.
So yes, I do use them, I need to use them and will continue to use them as long as the departments I deal with require them.

And many people are in similar situations. A the office, I don't think a $79 external DVD drive will be a problem. But I understand that it's easier if it were still build in. That I get.

At wizard69 I see people already gave their opinion on the chassis issue, to which I agree.
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post #221 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

It's entirely possible that this is the future of Apple's pro desktop. Hmm…


It's possible. Right now they share a lot of parts yet avoid the use of the really expensive parts in the single socket version. They use different cpus and mitigate board costs with the daugherboard design. If  they stick to the current design, they probably would not reduce it to single only. Otherwise I still don't see them going outside of the EP chips, maybe just single versions.

post #222 of 516
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Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

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Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

…it is only a single socket machine.

It's entirely possible that this is the future of Apple's pro desktop. Hmm…

That seems odd to me. The iMac and mini have become so fast that in order to differentiate the MP I would presume they make it the fastest beast around. Quad socket, 6-core machine with 16x16GB memory sticks. No HDD, SSD only. Partnership with a company that makes a successor to the Xserve RAID


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post #223 of 516

Is this your Mac system pictured here?
 

post #224 of 516
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Originally Posted by marvfox View Post

Is this your Mac system pictured here?

 

I think darkdefender has a light computer, not one weighing 41 pounds.
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post #225 of 516

You miss my point completely, modern computer design has to deal with removing heat from very small point sources.   The case has nothing to do with that.  

 

CPU heat sink design has nothing to do with the case.   Sure the heat sink has to have surface area but most electronics do not couple that heat sink to the case.   

 

As for computers with cube like design you either make the design work for you or you don't.    There is nothing inherently wrong with a cube design.    In fact a cube has advantages over vertically oriented chassis due the fact that heat rises.  

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Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


What doesn't it have to do with computing? My usage is relation to Apple using the metal case for conduction which helps alleviate the need for faster spinning fans, larger fans, etc, which helps reduce power needs. Not eliminate but help reduce.

But that is beside the point if you think that Allen's Rule does not exist in computing. Have you ever seen a heat sink? The entire design is to increase the surface area of the sink as much as possible so that more heat can be dissipated faster. That is Allen's Rule in a nutshell.

Cubes on and under a desk aren't likely as useful as you aren't likely to need more a certain amount of area to the front or back for ports and drives. You can't easily place it on or under a desk with room for a monitor or your feet and turning ti 90° may results in issues turned the other way. If a cube is 2x as wide as the current design but the internals are still about 1/2 that internal space how is that space being utilized properly when your 5" HDD drive is now sitting 12" deep in the chassis. It it opens up down the centerline then it's not a big deal but how would that be likely. If anyone could figure out how to make it work I think it's Apple but there is a reason this is not a common design and why Apple's Mac Pro is just wide enough to fit one HDD from side-to-side.
post #226 of 516

Wake up!    Seriously electronics have shrunken considerably since the Mac Pro chassis has come out.   

 

As to the current Mac Pro it is a hang over from the days of PPC and massive coolers.    At this point it is too large for no reason.   Beyond that there is no need for super drives, disk arrays and other wasted space in a modern "PRO" computer.   PCI expansion however can't go to external boxes with today's technology.  

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Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

 

I still don't understand comments like this.

 

The current Mac Pro isn't massive 'for no reason' at all. If you have dual processors, a Superdrive, 4 hard drives and 4 PCI cards - which is what the unit is built to accommodate -  you need every inch of that chassis to ensure the components don't boil.

 

Apple can make a future unit much smaller by ditching the Superdrive, going with SSDs only and shifting PCI expansion to a breakout box.

 

But to say that the current Pro's size serves no purpose is just plain wrong.

This is regressive thinking or frankly looking to the distant past.    Even recent Mac Pros suffer from excessive space that does nothing for the platform.  

post #227 of 516

I wouldn't be surprised to see Apple go to single socket only Mac Pros.   

 

For one thing I expect a much higher performance GPU card or even a GPU soldered on the motherboard.   Either way they have to find a way to connect TB to it.   Putting the GPU on the motherboard would result in a well defined system for software developers and go farther to encouraging the use of OpenCL.   At some point (but not with today's GPUs) they will need to support heterogeneous computing and unified access to memory.   This isn't far off and Apple knows it is coming so designing a computer that looks forward to the coming architectures is just smart on their part.  

 

As to EP processors I still have this feeling that Apple and Intel are working on something more useful  for workstation type computers.   I just find it interesting that I can't find references to certain things that Intel alluded to a couple of years ago before Xeon Phi was branded.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post


It's possible. Right now they share a lot of parts yet avoid the use of the really expensive parts in the single socket version. They use different cpus and mitigate board costs with the daugherboard design. If  they stick to the current design, they probably would not reduce it to single only. Otherwise I still don't see them going outside of the EP chips, maybe just single versions.

post #228 of 516
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

You miss my point completely, modern computer design has to deal with removing heat from very small point sources.   The case has nothing to do with that.

Say what? The whole Power Mac chassis was designed with heat dissipate in mind. Don't you remember Steve on stage saying: "What Apple? Nine fans? That thing will make a lot of noise!"

The case is the main case!
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post #229 of 516
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

You miss my point completely, modern computer design has to deal with removing heat from very small point sources.   The case has nothing to do with that.  

CPU heat sink design has nothing to do with the case.   Sure the heat sink has to have surface area but most electronics do not couple that heat sink to the case.   

As for computers with cube like design you either make the design work for you or you don't.    There is nothing inherently wrong with a cube design.    In fact a cube has advantages over vertically oriented chassis due the fact that heat rises.  

Your original query asked what Allen's Rule had to do with a computer, not a case, hence my comment. We also see Apple use the case for cooling in every machine they make except perhaps the Mac Pro. The current Mac Pro can't be ruled out unless we can conclude that a non-conductive material for the case would not affect the internal temperature.

I addressed how a cube could work but stated that a 12" cube would not be practical because of the placement of components. I think a cube that is say 7" would be more practical from an organization standpoint but would it have enough volume at (under) 343" cubed to work as a modern dual-socket workstation? If they get rid of the internal ODDs, reduce the PSU considerably, shrink the board to fit any one side of the case, but still use 4 HDDs, 3 PCIe slot, and allow for 8 sticks of desktop/server RAM could it al fit and still have enough room for cooling and other components? I don't think so..

I'd think that about 14" would be the minimum but then making it an actual cube wouldn't be practical so you're back to having it as some 14" x 14" x 7" to make accessing the internal component practical and you'd still get a substantial gain on internal volume. It would be (under) 1372" cubed. The current Mac Pro looks to be about 16" x 18" x 8" for the case minus the "handles" or close to double the volume of my concept but about 7x more volume than a 7" cube.


edit: Here is how you access the internal components of the NeXT cube and the Mac Pro. If you have an idea how to make a cube design as functional and convenient as the Mac Pro is I'd love to hear it. From that image of the Mac Pro what I'd think is most likely for them to do to reduce the size but maintain the needed functionality and convenience is to remove the HDDs then stand them up on their sides at the front or stack them one on top of each other after removing the ODDs. This allows for the PSU and top of the case to drop. If you shrink the PSU and board you can further shrink the case down and/or in. I think that's about it outside of other minor changes that won't result in too many changes with the internal volume. I think the shape will be about the same with airflow from front to back


Edited by SolipsismX - 2/19/13 at 10:21am

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post #230 of 516
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post
That seems odd to me. The iMac and mini have become so fast that in order to differentiate the MP I would presume they make it the fastest beast around. Quad socket, 6-core machine with 16x16GB memory sticks. No HDD, SSD only.

 

Q… QUAD-socket? As in the… crap, what were they called… I'll find it. 

 

The ones that start at $1,000 per chip. You really want Apple to use those?! The board has to be huge, too… 


Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post
As to the current Mac Pro it is a hang over from the days of PPC and massive coolers.    At this point it is too large for no reason.   Beyond that there is no need for super drives, disk arrays and other wasted space in a modern "PRO" computer.

 

I agree with everything but drives, UNLESS Apple starts making an XServe RAID equivalent again. I like the Mac Pro because of its ludicrously simple and Apple-approved expansion. 

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post #231 of 516
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Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


Q… QUAD-socket? As in the… crap, what were they called… I'll find it. 

The ones that start at $1,000 per chip. You really want Apple to use those?! The board has to be huge, too…

Yes. I wouldn't mind if the MP became more expensive. I don't think anyone would mind; you buy what you need, the cost is irrelevant. Well, that not something you'd hear in Business School, but you catch my drift. Besides, aren't the current CPU's something like $800 a piece already.
Quote:
I agree with everything but drives, UNLESS Apple starts making an XServe RAID equivalent again. I like the Mac Pro because of its ludicrously simple and Apple-approved expansion.

If they keep HDD's in the new MP, they could put them perpendicular, possibly creating room for 12 old school 3.5" ones. However, I don't know what kind of heat that will create, and how they'll deal with that.
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post #232 of 516
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post
If they keep HDD's in the new MP, they could put them perpendicular, possibly creating room for 12 old school 3.5" ones. However, I don't know what kind of heat that will create, and how they'll deal with that.

 

It's safer (faster?) to have them horizontal, isn't it? Or is that only ODDs…

 

I just want internal storage because DARN if I'm going to be forced to look at third party USELESS CRAP multi-drive enclosures again. 

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post #233 of 516
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Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post


It's safer (faster?) to have them horizontal, isn't it? Or is that only ODDs…

I just want internal storage because DARN if I'm going to be forced to look at third party USELESS CRAP multi-drive enclosures again. 

I'm right there with you, not wanting 3rd party solutions. But considering the slow speed of HDD and the vast amount of data 'some pros' need access to, they just might make you use an external box.

The HDD's can be putt perpendicular since the did that in the Xserve RAID, like many others still do. Of course, those were usually placed in a server room, airco and all that. So my 'design' only holds water if they come up with a new innovative cooling system. Something they keep on tinkering with (9 fans, water cooled CPU's...)
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post #234 of 516
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post
The HDD's can be putt perpendicular since the did that in the Xserve RAID, like many others still do.

 

Well, I'm all for 14 hard drives inside any future Mac Pro I get.

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post #235 of 516

Thrappa, thrappa, thrappa...

 

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.)

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post #236 of 516

I recently built a workstation for my neighbor. He's a graphics and video guru with his own small firm and wanted to start using a Nvidia Tesla to help speed up his render times. He's a Mac guy predominately but the Mac Pro doesn't support the Tesla or multiple graphics cards for that matter (yes even in 2013). It's been a long time since I built a machine from scratch but what I found out quickly is that even with top notch hardware I was able to build a machine that was significantly faster and cheaper then the Mac Pro. Apple Quoted us 8,000 for the system that kind of came close to what he wanted. We built a machine for 7,200 (without the three Tesla cards) and got 32 cores vs.16 cores. We opted for the new Opteron 6300 series which is a quarter of the cost of Intels newest Xeon 8 core chip the E5-4650 which costs a whopping 3,800 per chip. The AMD cost's 800 and is only marginally slower then the Intel offering but is much, much faster then the current Intel Xeon E-5675 found in the high end Mac Pro. We added 32 GB of faster ram found in the Mac Pro with lower latency, 4 1GB SAS drives at 15,000 RPM's vs 7,200, a Quadro K5000 graphics card (which by the way is friggen awesome) VS. the older Nvidia 5870 game card, a Adaptic SAS raid card, a SuperMicro SuperChasis (which is one of the best cases for workstations) with two 1800W power supply for redundancy. I bought the 3 Tesla S1070 cards for 300 a piece from Ebay. Total package deal was 8,100, a super computer in every righ. We built a Nvidia Maximus system basically, I have never seen a faster computer in my life, it renders things in Adobe Effects in matter of minutes where it would take my Macbook Pro almost an hour to do.

 

The moral of the story is though I love OSX and can't imagine using another OS in my workstation there just aren't enough advantages of buying a Mac Pro to make it a good investment. Apple has pretty much transitioned over to a consumer company with the them abandoning their server line, discontinuing many professional apps and stripping the others down to the point of why bother status. A person would probably be better served with buying a much cheaper iMac and then building a headless render machine. With Adobe supporting distributed computing clustering now and the Tesla cards not having to be on the host machine it might be a better and cheaper solution for graphic houses who seem to be the last people buying the Mac Pro anyway. Just food for thought, I just wish I had 8,000 to build a Nvidia Maximus system, man those things are cool. I am also happy to report that my friend has had zero issues with the build. The only complaints he has is it is to fast, things are done so quickly he finds himself clicking on a job twice thinking the command was never sent in the first place. Now that's computing. This was not written to bring any ill thoughts towards Apple as I have purchased my fair share of II FX's, Quadros and Mac Pros over the years but I think at this point Apple is just making these things as some sort of obligation it might have with Universities. I just can't imagine a firm would find value in these anymore.


Edited by Relic - 2/19/13 at 4:35pm
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post #237 of 516
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

It's safer (faster?) to have them horizontal, isn't it? Or is that only ODDs…

The setups I've seen on the sites pitching them, the 3.5" drives are mounted width for length, the length of the 3.5" drive for the width of the 5.25" bay. So the drives are still horizontal but reoriented to fit more drives in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Relic View Post

I recently built a workstation for my neighbor. He's a graphics and video guru with his own small firm and wanted to start using a Nvidia Tesla to help speed up his render times. He's a Mac guy predominately but the Mac Pro doesn't support the Tesla or multiple graphics cards for that matter (yes even in 2013).

The Mac Pro can support two graphics cards. It is even a BTO option.
post #238 of 516
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post
The Mac Pro can support two graphics cards. It is even a BTO option.

 

Doesn't combine them, which is what they're after.


Not like SLI/CrossFire combine, but… actually, yeah, that's exactly what it's like, except not for games. That's what Relic wants (but does either manufacturer offer a solution like that for non-gaming purposes?).

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post #239 of 516
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Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Wake up!    Seriously electronics have shrunken considerably since the Mac Pro chassis has come out.   

 

As to the current Mac Pro it is a hang over from the days of PPC and massive coolers.    At this point it is too large for no reason.   Beyond that there is no need for super drives, disk arrays and other wasted space in a modern "PRO" computer.   PCI expansion however can't go to external boxes with today's technology.  

This is regressive thinking or frankly looking to the distant past.    Even recent Mac Pros suffer from excessive space that does nothing for the platform.  

 

Nonsense. You're saying that if you buy a Mac Pro today and max it out with 4 hard drives and 4 PCI cards that there's excess space?

 

No, there isn't. The space is to allow proper cooling.

 

As I said, if Apple moves to SSDs, reduces the number of PCI cards and deletes the Superdrive it can shrink.

 

But saying the current case is big for no reason is incorrect. It is properly sized for what it's built to do.

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post #240 of 516

It is a common mis conception that lots of space leads to proper cooling.   Cooling is an engineering problem where you often get your best results by channeling air flow across the hot parts.   Lots of free space in a machine like the Mac Pro can and does lead to hot spots.  

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

 

Nonsense. You're saying that if you buy a Mac Pro today and max it out with 4 hard drives and 4 PCI cards that there's excess space?

 

No, there isn't. The space is to allow proper cooling.

 

As I said, if Apple moves to SSDs, reduces the number of PCI cards and deletes the Superdrive it can shrink.

 

But saying the current case is big for no reason is incorrect. It is properly sized for what it's built to do.

I really don't buy this idea at all.   The Mac Pro was sized to handle Power PC processors that where extremely hot chips relative to what currently ships in the platform thus requiring extensive cooling systems.   Thus the case is now big due to legacy issues or for no reason at all.  

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