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Editorial: What will Apple do with the Macintosh? - Page 4

post #121 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim W View Post

Couldn't have said it better. An iMac or Thunderbolt connected setup cannot be taken seriously at the pro level unless your needs are very specific or you don't mind clutter. I just love the comments of people who have never worked in a professional space. Have you ever even seen a pro level graphics card? They are bigger than a Mac Mini, draw large amounts of power,  and would cause an iMac to explode if it were possible to shoe horn one in, let alone cool it. That is only one subsystem. For the reasons stated above, I have no desire to get into a system like the one described above, a mess. Please, a Mac Pro tower with Pci 3 and an open selection of graphics cards. Thunderbolt 1 and eventually 2 for peripherals, Firewire for legacy, and plenty of fast RAM. And it wouldn't cost $30k...

 

And here's something I else:  the MBP gets pretty hot at times, even with the fan kicking in.  That's the nature of any decently powerful laptop that is your centerpiece.  It's already atop a vented stand with its extra fan but that's just venting and blowing on the outside of the case, which helps but doesn't address the circumstance, which is powerful components jammed close together with minimal ventilation and a teeny, cursory fan.  Apple has done amazing things in their quest for making things more and more powerful in thinner and thinner cases but at some cost.   I've always felt that, during these past few years of lack of modern desktop choices, if they made a MBP that was an inch thick I'd be the first in line.   I mean, if all we're being offered is laptops why not make one with a more powerful hotter than low power chip and motherboard, make it thick enough to vent and fan well and there's no reason it would have to be much heavier.  

 

Well, then there's that clutter thing, yeah...  :  )

post #122 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenThousandThings View Post

 

If Dan is right, PCIe functionality will be pushed outside the box, via Thunderbolt. Apart from that, it's just the optical drive. Everything else stays inside, obviously. I would hope that Apple would not do this (move PCIe outside the box) unless anything that could formerly be added via PCIe can now, or soon will be, possible via Thunderbolt.

 

But you've definitely hit upon one limitation that early adopters will likely face. Dan doesn't point out the fact that the current Ivy Bridge with its Cactus Ridge Thunderbolt controllers doesn't have the bandwidth to be useful for high-end external GPUs, nor do the just-announced Redwood Ridge Thunderbolt controllers for Haswell, at least according to this person:

 

http://www.anandtech.com/show/6885/new-thunderbolt-controllers-dsl45104410-and-future-20gbps-falcon-ridge-tb-controller-announced

 

So it won't be until the Falcon Ridge Thunderbolt controllers that high-end external GPUs will be a reality via Thunderbolt. So early adopters will have to accept a limitation that won't be remedied until a major refresh in 2015, when the Falcon Ridge Thunderbolt controller would most likely make its way to the new Mac Pro.

 

In short, if they do this now, Apple will be way out on a limb for at least two years. But Intel will be out there with them, and maybe it will scare Microsoft into dealing with this problem. This isn't Firewire. I'd love to know what Dan thinks about the whole "Thunderbolt is the new Firewire" (quoting one of the comments on the article linked above) meme that is bound to take hold in the wake of Apple doing this.

 

You have to wonder if Apple will include two internal GPU slots, thereby removing this limitation, since then you wouldn't need Thunderbolt to handle a second GPU/video card.

 

Nor the fact that an external GPGPU System only adds to the complexity of the entire system which will require a separate cooling solution and power solution thus driving the price up by about $1k.

post #123 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post

 

Saying they calibrate is partly marketing speech. I'm sure they have a good system in place, but the statement doesn't deliver much information. Dell calibrates their displays too, as does every other brand. Displays are not stable devices and saying they were calibrated and double checked still doesn't tell you everything. They take time to warm up in general, so when you wake your computer, you have 15 to 30 minutes prior to seeing things precisely as they are intended. It's a gradual change, so most people will never notice it. Some displays seem to warm up faster than others. It doesn't tell you how many regions they measured or their pass/fail tolerance on any metric. It doesn't mention their pass or fail standards for uniformity. When people see a bad one, they assume QA, but they really don't know what is considered passable at the factory. Even after all of that, displays are unstable devices. A year from now it will look different even if you don't notice it due to the gradual nature of its changes. Some offer tools to help minimize this. With Apple you are limited to profiling software, which helps. It's just really really limited in what it can do.

 

None of this really tells you how well they are done. I mainly wanted to point out that these things lack some of the tools that other brands have used for years to maintain some consistency over time, but at the same time Apple doesn't really aim directly at specialized markets. It's more frequently good enough to work with than ideal when it comes to specialized use cases.

 

Well yeah trying to place additional links in there with asynchronous frequencies and a greatly expanded distance doesn't sound like good system design. Beyond that intel developed the technology for thunderbolt. They wouldn't develop a solution to undercut their own higher margin chips. Much of the other hardware is available in external add-on form factors with the exception of gpus and a couple other pieces of dedicated specialty hardware. GPUs seem like the most likely candidate, but I still don't think it's that likely. Mobile gpus and IGPs keep getting better. Intel needs better drivers and Apple needs to offer better OpenGL support, but in terms of weighing options, how many people are going to pay easily $600-700 for a mid range gpu shoved into a case with a $50 cable just to retrofit the machine? I remember the Quadro 4000 Mac had severe driver issues for months after its release, and that wasn't taxed with being hot pluggable.

 


I'm not sure about multi million dollar. It might not be that high per unit, and they likely use more than one. When people accused Dell's U2410 of having an uneven pink cast a few years ago right when it debuted, it came out that they did calibrate them. They just only measured the center. Factory calibration is just part of assembly, and they delivered just enough information to sound good. If they went into the real detail, their audience would lose interest.

 

I want 3 full length PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots that if I put in 3 full length AMD 7990x2 they fit and have plenty of power draw to boot. I don't want a triple where we have an x16, x8, x4 configuration. I want an x16, x16, x16 full lanes. Each lane then can have a separate Thunderbolt controller accessing and x16 PCI-E 3.0 bus.

post #124 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post


Haven't tried Blender in a while... will give it a go!

I don't have a Mac Pro, but FCPX exploits 8 cores (4 virtual) on my loaded early 2012 iMac 27 (3.4 GHz, 16 GB RAM, Radeon HD 6970 1024MB *)

* I screwed up and didm't max out the VRAM

Anyway, FCPX is wicked fast -- rendering, transcoding and analysis (camera shake, etc.) -- you should give it a try -- it take things like MultiCam and 2K, 3K, 4K video in stride

 

 

I'm nearly finished building my Vishera 8350 box in a Corsair 650D with 32GB of RAM and > 1k Power Supply and self-contained radiator cooling for FreeBSD/Linux.

Then it's on to budgeting aside for a Mac Pro and will definitely invest in FCP X.

post #125 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenThousandThings View Post

Dan doesn't point out the fact that the current Ivy Bridge with its Cactus Ridge Thunderbolt controllers doesn't have the bandwidth to be useful for high-end external GPUs, nor do the just-announced Redwood Ridge Thunderbolt controllers for Haswell.

In short, if they do this now, Apple will be way out on a limb for at least two years.

GPUs already perform fine over Thunderbolt:



They have their own video memory so the bandwidth isn't such a big deal. It's not an ideal setup though and not necessary. It needs driver support for a proprietary Intel tech that AMD and NVidia won't support for obvious reasons and Apple wouldn't support because they don't like you buying your own GPUs.

Let's say that Apple brought out a new Mac Pro and soldered a GTX 780 chip onto the motherboard and that connected to Thunderbolt, the GPU won't need to be upgraded for another 2-3 years. Intel plans to have a 50Gbps interconnect in 2015:

http://www.tomshardware.com/news/Thunderbolt-silicon-photonics-optical-networking-50-gigabits-per-second-Jef-Demain,12668.html

It's a novel idea for Mac Pro owners but after 2-3 years, paying Apple for a new model is an option and hey, you get a new GPU with it anyway so you still won't need to add another one. Everybody wins.

September 2013
Ivy Bridge EP Xeon
soldered GTX 780
10Gbps Redwood Ridge Thunderbolt (2-4 ports)

...

September 2015
Broadwell EP Xeon
soldered whatever (GTX 980?) GPU (up to 2x the speed of the 780)
50Gbps optical interconnect (2-4 ports)

Intel has plans to go BGA with some of Broadwell and it includes the server chips (albeit optional) so Apple could easily use CPUs soldered onto the boards too so that people can't do their own CPU upgrades and further doing Apple out of an upgrade payment.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer 
I want 3 full length PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots that if I put in 3 full length AMD 7990x2 they fit and have plenty of power draw to boot. I don't want a triple where we have an x16, x8, x4 configuration. I want an x16, x16, x16 full lanes. Each lane then can have a separate Thunderbolt controller accessing and x16 PCI-E 3.0 bus.

It's x16, x4, x4 free. You only get 40 lanes - 16 + 16 + 4 + 4 and only the first one double-wide for the GPU. If you had 3 double wide for x16, x16, x8, you could put 3 7990s in but then you'd need to double the power supply to 2kW, which I doubt Apple would consider. They build machines based on what people are likely to do with them. Giving everyone a 2kW PSU would be overkill.
post #126 of 192

As some here have suggested a modular design, there is a concept drawing out there for one:

 

http://ipack3d.com/page8/index.php?id=2959698825183484676

 

There was a long thread back a while that discussed the MacPro and suggested the modular form might not work, but the concept is cool.

 

http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/150659/tim-cook-confirms-updated-mac-pro-coming-in-2013

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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post #127 of 192
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post
As some here have suggested a modular design, there is a concept drawing out there for one:

 

http://ipack3d.com/page8/index.php?id=2959698825183484676

 

I hate that thing so much. It's so opposite of everything Apple does. 

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post #128 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

 

I hate that thing so much. It's so opposite of everything Apple does. 

 

 

I'd love to see other mockups of what people are suggesting here, but this is the only one I have seen.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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post #129 of 192
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post
I'd love to see other mockups of what people are suggesting here, but this is the only one I have seen.

 

Oh absolutely! There was a mockup of a modular iMac redesign, and for the life of me I can't find it, but it was gorgeous.

 

Not that it's a good idea, but it was really well done!

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post #130 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

As some here have suggested a modular design, there is a concept drawing out there for one:

http://ipack3d.com/page8/index.php?id=2959698825183484676

There was a long thread back a while that discussed the MacPro and suggested the modular form might not work, but the concept is cool.

http://forums.appleinsider.com/t/150659/tim-cook-confirms-updated-mac-pro-coming-in-2013

Yeah, I agree with TS, that thing just makes my stomach churn. I'm not opposed to some modular aspects to the next Mac Pro but that idea just seems so wrong to me.

"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

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"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

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post #131 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mechanic View Post

http://appleinsider.com/articles/12/12/06/apple-will-invest-100m-to-bring-some-production-of-macs-to-us-in-2013

http://www.electronista.com/articles/13/04/16/florida.set.to.become.important.apple.hub/

http://appleinsider.com/articles/13/04/08/apples-us-based-chip-development-expanding-in-florida-could-be-related-to-fingerprint-tech

 

Here are some related links, I dont think Florida is where the manufacturing facility will be built but it will have two research facilities for chips one for the authentec buy and one for the A series as both articles note that apple is already listing jobs for those facilities.

 

But the first article is about what Tim Cook said that one mac line will be built in the US and apple is dropping 100 million to make it so this year.  Because the Mac Pro is a small line that amount of money for a facility to build the Mac Pro would be an appropriate amount.


You misunderstand. I was asking for a link that it was confirmed that Florida would be the site where the new manufacturing line would be/already is placed.

post #132 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

Oh absolutely! There was a mockup of a modular iMac redesign, and for the life of me I can't find it, but it was gorgeous.

Not that it's a good idea, but it was really well done!

I couldn't find any better modular design. I did find this mock up that is surprising similar to the one I did in Preview as a general concept of how they can make it smaller in size.


"There is no rule that says the best phones must have the largest screen." ~RoundaboutNow

 

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post #133 of 192

I apologize for causing stomach ailments on a Sunday evening for you guys.  Was just trying to get the imagination rolling.  

 

Hopefully, someone more artistically inclined than myself will come up with something nice and post it for all of us to see, and to cure the indigestion I have caused.  I never graduated from stickfigures...

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #134 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


I couldn't find any better modular design. I did find this mock up that is surprising similar to the one I did in Preview as a general concept of how they can make it smaller in size.


 

 

that was posted by Marvin a while back.  I just found it and was going to link.

 

post #131

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply
post #135 of 192

Just noticed that this thread is filed under Software > MacOS

 

But we are discussing hardware...

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

Reply

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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post #136 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


You save the space that the Mac Pro would have taken up to begin with. There's more cabling with external storage + 2-3 peripherals but you can put them in a box if you like.
The size of the card isn't important. The fastest cards are not even 2x the performance of the iMac's GPU but cost $1000 or more each. Not to mention they are outside the safe power limits of the Mac Pro too.

The Radeon 7990 is 375W. I'm not sure how many professionals would put a 375W GPU into slots with a 300W power allocation but I doubt they'd be in business long.

The Mac Pro can obviously hold higher wattage cards than the iMac but they don't perform significantly better in practise. OS X doesn't support the highest-end GPUs on the software side either.

With the high-end GPUs out of the equation, you're just left with expansion cards, which work fine over Thunderbolt.

I've made the point before that games aren't the only benchmark, but for other applications the general consensus isn't typically the hottest gaming gpu. In some cases workstation variants are a better idea. "Expansion cards work fine over thunderbolt" is a pretty bold statement. You are more limited than you would be with PCI cards, not that it matters for everyone. You may have to reboot any time it's plugged in or if the connection is dropped. Even the proof of concept videos admit it's not really perfect. Personally I would stick to the ones where whatever company oems the device makes a usb3 or thunderbolt version rather than relying on card  + enclosure. Thunderbolt isn't a plug and play PCIe unless you're dealing with certified devices.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

 

I want 3 full length PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots that if I put in 3 full length AMD 7990x2 they fit and have plenty of power draw to boot. I don't want a triple where we have an x16, x8, x4 configuration. I want an x16, x16, x16 full lanes. Each lane then can have a separate Thunderbolt controller accessing and x16 PCI-E 3.0 bus.


I can't think of any workstations that actually do that. Typically on the Windows variants, they encourage the use of workstation cards, which seem to carry lower tdp than some of the top gaming cards. I don't think Apple was using 200W cards back when they designed the case used for the Mac Pro today. Regardless of oem brand, you would need power connectors on them. The PCI lanes don't have enough direct power to deal with several of those. Without over-subscribing the slots, you would also be limited to the dual cpu machines for such a configuration. The lanes originate on the cpus as of Sandy Bridge, so you would need 2 at x40 each to get the 48 lanes required for your configuration aside from lanes allocated to  other on board ports. I'm not sure how they would implement thunderbolt there. It might not be a huge engineering issue. I just don't know how it would be done.

post #137 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

The Mac is not going anywhere. Imagine an alternative history where Apple had never made computers and had started with the iPod, then the iPhone and iPad. What would the endless chorus from the media be? "When will they make a laptop"
At that time it would be to risky to find a market for it(price would be at least triple and phones wernt mobile, so if they did the company would have gone bankrupt.
post #138 of 192
Well this might be the direction they go will be like this: Best Mac design(would be):tablet, .8 inches thick, 15 inch screen(retina), .2 inches bezel around screen(or edge to edge) 11 megapixel iSight, 3 megapixel FaceTime, 4 microphones, 4 GHz 4 core processor(perfurably a Apple custom-A series) running windows, IOS, and Mac-OS(double click home and then hold down to switch) 11 hour battery (for safari on IOS and Mac-OS) featuring 2 thunderbolt, 2 USB 3.1, MagSafe, 2 Audio I/O, for ports, switches include: home, S/W, silent(/screen orientation on IOS) audio up/down, brightness up/down,
F keys(for Mac OS and can be set in settings on IOS[F1-10,N]) and 
Other ports are sd-xc, and micro sim(for cellular version) in the box:IMacTab, MagSafe adapters, thunderbolt to lighting, apple earpods, instruction Manuel, price in today's market would easily reach $3K for a minimum model with 16GB ram, and 512 GB SSD, and a highest price model with 5Ghz 8 core processor, 32 GB Ram, and 3TB SSD(or two 1.5 TB for each OS) could be at minimum of $5k but more feasible $8k. Works with all current Mac/IOS accesorys.(plus new Bluetooth tablet keyboard for iPad and this)
Took along time to write this so please reply with your thoughts.
post #139 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

Just noticed that this thread is filed under Software > MacOS

But we are discussing hardware...
We are discussing both actually...
post #140 of 192
Disney started with animated films and now they make much more money from theme parks, live action films and resorts. They still make animated films because they are the identity and soul of the company. They also synergize with the other businesses.
Apple started making flexible, expandable computers from its beginnings and have continued to make them throughout their existence. They are still the soul of the company. They synergize with the other businesses in unexpected ways. The fact that Macs are so heavily used in research labs carries a message for us all---smart people use Macs. When your kid looks at DVD special features and they see the creative people using Macs, they know that Macs and Apple products superior. They will carry this belief with them for the rest of their lives---unless some thin-lipped, bottom-line executive decides that the numbers on the balance sheet don't add up. The positive impact of Pro Macs cannot be measured on a balance sheet but it is enormous. Besides, the technology in an up to date Pro Mac will be the technology of our iPhones and iPads in a few years. Apple, hold on to your soul!
post #141 of 192
Ive been waiting for someone to write about the 800 lb gorilla in the room. Nice analysis. But I do think there's an issue Apple will need to address more important that the Mac Pro. Mac sales are dropping year over year.

My belief is that retina pricing is responsible. There is a psychological boundary in pricing, where basically the customer has a mental alarm go off in their head that says,

"If I pay this much I am a total idiot" and they walk out of the store.

Retina Macbook pricing has crossed this boundary into Alienware territory (Not that anyone would buy one of those things)

Look I dont care how well off you are, I used to build my own PCs for 800-1000, as things got more commoditized they were only lasting about 8 months.

Buying a mac for 1500 and having it last 3-5 years is fine by me. Add Apple care add tax, now were near 2K depending on where you live.

That was NON-retina. Apple had the best selling notebook in the industry in the 15 inch macbook, it had slow sales of the 17 inch - WHY? Because the 17 inch was priced at 2,500 dollars.

Now including tax and apple care you cant buy a retina macbook for much less than 2K (if at all)

This is pushing people past the psychological boundary I mentioned. Ive even see non retina macbooks pushed off into a corner of an Apple store as if they were undesirable. The best selling notebook in the US undesirable...yeah right.

Retina macbook pricing is crazy and the sticker shock or drop in sales is going to teach Apple a lesson it already learned with the 17 inch macbook. If the lesson is learned too late the mac as a product line will be finished.

PS I just bought a 17 inch macbook a month ago and its is AMAZING.
post #142 of 192
Originally Posted by Curtis Hannah View Post
tablet, .8 inches thick, 15 inch screen(retina)

 

Why can't it be as thin as it is now? I don't imagine they'll make a 15" iPad until it can weigh 1.5 lbs. and be only as thick as the first-gen.


.2 inches bezel around screen(or edge to edge)

 

The larger the screen, the larger the bezel you'd want. I'd say the iPad's bezel is about right for a 15". Really wish they weren't changing that on the 5th gen. It makes me not want to upgrade.


…4 microphones…

 

Gotta have that quadraphonic sound!¡

 

…4 GHz…

 

It's not all about the Pentiums, baby.


…running windows…

 

*sounds of car wreck*


…IOS, and Mac-OS…

 

Never ever ever ever ever ever.


(double click home and then hold down to switch)


Ooh! A worse restarting mechanic than Windows 8's! That's difficult to achieve.


2 thunderbolt, 2 USB 3.1, MagSafe, 2 Audio I/O… …sd-xc…


Nope. Lightning. And 3.5mm headphone.


Took along time to write this so please reply with your thoughts.

 

I definitely see what you're trying to do, but I don't see it as the way they want to go.

 

A 15" tablet is going to be WAY more like an iPad than a Mac, but I don't believe they'll make one that runs OS X. Nor iOS. Well, not iOS' current incarnation, at least. And they won't make it until the physical experience isn't compromised in its use. That's the problem with the Surface; it's a laptop shoehorned into the tablet form factor. It didn't work ten years ago, and it won't fly now, particularly since people know what a tablet CAN be like. It'll have to be as easy to hold and use as an iPad is today.

 

You're right that they won't compromise on the battery life, but I don't see upgradability to it at all, beyond local capacity. I think those days are coming to a close. Not that computers will become more "disposable", but that the same hardware will last you longer/as long thanks to the forced optimization that comes with standardized hardware.

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post #143 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by appmonster View Post

Ive been waiting for someone to write about the 800 lb gorilla in the room. Nice analysis. But I do think there's an issue Apple will need to address more important that the Mac Pro. Mac sales are dropping year over year.

My belief is that retina pricing is responsible. There is a psychological boundary in pricing, where basically the customer has a mental alarm go off in their head that says,

"If I pay this much I am a total idiot" and they walk out of the store.

Retina Macbook pricing has crossed this boundary into Alienware territory (Not that anyone would buy one of those things)

Look I dont care how well off you are, I used to build my own PCs for 800-1000, as things got more commoditized they were only lasting about 8 months.

Buying a mac for 1500 and having it last 3-5 years is fine by me. Add Apple care add tax, now were near 2K depending on where you live.

That was NON-retina. Apple had the best selling notebook in the industry in the 15 inch macbook, it had slow sales of the 17 inch - WHY? Because the 17 inch was priced at 2,500 dollars.

Now including tax and apple care you cant buy a retina macbook for much less than 2K (if at all)

This is pushing people past the psychological boundary I mentioned. Ive even see non retina macbooks pushed off into a corner of an Apple store as if they were undesirable. The best selling notebook in the US undesirable...yeah right.

Retina macbook pricing is crazy and the sticker shock or drop in sales is going to teach Apple a lesson it already learned with the 17 inch macbook. If the lesson is learned too late the mac as a product line will be finished.

PS I just bought a 17 inch macbook a month ago and its is AMAZING.
 

 

With the exception of the last year Mac Sales have been expanding year over year, not dropping. The last 12 months have seen nothing but supply line constraints across all of Apple's market segments.

Their sales drops are 1/12th the rates of those of the entire PC sector. In fact, the biggest contributing factor to the miniscule drops of 1.5% in Mac Sales were panel issues with the iMac, Macbook AIR/Macbook Pro.
 

The world is waiting on Samsung, LG, SHARP and whatever other IPS/LED panel manufacturers to get their crap together and stop constraining supplies to drive up the rates in an attempt to compensate for their own mishandling of business and collusion fees that Samsung/LG were guilty of on more than one occasion.

 

In fact, if they don't get their crap together you can bet a new consortium of companies will create a new set of manufacturers that will produce new channels of materials. The money is available along with the expertise.

post #144 of 192
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

The world is waiting on Samsung, LG, SHARP and whatever other IPS/LED panel manufacturers to get their crap together and stop constraining supplies to drive up the rates in an attempt to compensate for their own mishandling of business and collusion fees that Samsung/LG were guilty of on more than one occasion.

 

How many times since the turn of the century have various LCD manufacturers been caught colluding? Five, was it?

 

You get to wondering why the people responsible aren't jailed… Fines seem to do squat.


Edited by Tallest Skil - 4/28/13 at 10:02pm

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post #145 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by sessamoid View Post

I think the Mac Pro is the most likely product to have its manufacturing moved to the US. Cook stated last year they had planned to move a whole product line to the US for manufacturing, a comment that seems to have been forgotten by the tech press in the rush to proclaim the doom of the company.

I think you are right.  For instance: a highly automated assembly plant combined with a highly customizable Mac Pro design would make a lot of sense.  Order placed online, machine assembled by robots as you ordered, machine delivered in a couple of days.  Cool.

post #146 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post

I've made the point before that games aren't the only benchmark, but for other applications the general consensus isn't typically the hottest gaming gpu. In some cases workstation variants are a better idea. "Expansion cards work fine over thunderbolt" is a pretty bold statement. You are more limited than you would be with PCI cards, not that it matters for everyone. You may have to reboot any time it's plugged in or if the connection is dropped. Even the proof of concept videos admit it's not really perfect. Personally I would stick to the ones where whatever company oems the device makes a usb3 or thunderbolt version rather than relying on card  + enclosure. Thunderbolt isn't a plug and play PCIe unless you're dealing with certified devices.

 


I can't think of any workstations that actually do that. Typically on the Windows variants, they encourage the use of workstation cards, which seem to carry lower tdp than some of the top gaming cards. I don't think Apple was using 200W cards back when they designed the case used for the Mac Pro today. Regardless of oem brand, you would need power connectors on them. The PCI lanes don't have enough direct power to deal with several of those. Without over-subscribing the slots, you would also be limited to the dual cpu machines for such a configuration. The lanes originate on the cpus as of Sandy Bridge, so you would need 2 at x40 each to get the 48 lanes required for your configuration aside from lanes allocated to  other on board ports. I'm not sure how they would implement thunderbolt there. It might not be a huge engineering issue. I just don't know how it would be done.

 

I'm specifically implying that the Intel C228 chipset replacing the C216 chipset will have 3  8-lane PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots instead of just 2 leaving today's systems stuck at x16,x16,x8 at most.

post #147 of 192
The concept of external stackable box(es) for PCI extension cards, additional hard drives etc operating via Thunderbolt is superb. I buy the Mac Pro because I need the processing grunt and like to use my own monitor set-up... not the big box.

I also dislike the noise the Mac Pro puts out via its many fans ... and if it didn't need to cool 4 hard drives and multiple PCI cards in the one box, presumably the noise from fans could be reduced too.
post #148 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by SockRolid View Post



Starting with the MacBook Air, of course. It's absolutely inevitable.
Apple will avoid the Intel Tax, and will undercut Intel-based "Ultrabook" pricing.
And it would more strongly differentiate the consumer MacBooks from the MacBook Pros.
(If the MacBook Pros continue to use legacy Intel chips.)
Agree. Eventually, the Mac Pro could be composed of snap-together modules with Thunderbolt connectors. The basic Mac Pro would have one CPU module, one storage module, a power module, a Display Adapter module, plus an Apple Thunderbolt Display. (And maybe that would be the Mac mini configuration, come to think of it.) You want a hard core number cruncher? Snap together 10 CPU modules. You want a video editing system? Snap together 4 CPU modules and 20 storage modules.

The modules would be held together with magnets a la iPad Smart Cover, with near-flush Thunderbolt and power connectors. If you want more security, Apple could sell you lockable enclosures in different sizes. And, if you're feeling really retro, there might be 3rd party FireWire / USB / serial / parallel / SCSI modules too.

There's one big problem with these theories...They can't co-exist. Thunderbolt is an Intel licensed technology and is part of the PCIe controller built into the CPU. So if you switch to ARM on some models, but still want Thunderbolt  connected MacPro "modules", it will have to be Intel and will not be able to connect to ARM based MacBooks, nor will these MacBooks be able to connect to Thunderbolt displays with anything more than a regular mini display port. Going to ARM would mean dropping Thunderbolt, period. 

post #149 of 192
I honestly think of people who use Desktop Computers as construction companies. The devices themselves are the CAT Trucks, Back Hoes, the Excavators.

So yeah, think about all this, all the kids under 18 got iPods, iPhones, and iPads. Hey that's their generation and what they may need. But that's the freaking 100 million devices.

In the work world and such you need your TOOLS...

So, yeah I think they (Desktops/Towers) will be around. And a funny thing is for some guys their work is PC Gaming, getting paid MONEYS...

Get over it. I mean if the drop towers, guys will build hackintosh and even put iOS on Hackintosh if they ever dropped Mac OS X. So I mean it just doesn't matter.

Does Apple want to supply "Construction Companies" is the question 1smile.gif

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post #150 of 192

I know Tim sent out that mail saying that there's new Mac Pro on the way, but I seriously doubt it's a "new" product line. I forsee a "pro" version of the iMac with a high-end mobile graphics card, an extra Thunderbolt bus, and then a new "pro" thunderbolt hub for PCI/Firewire/Thunderbolt etc. The limited, online-only ad campaign will of course tout the fact that it's 8 times faster than the "old" Mac Pro, and that the thunderbolt solution is better/faster than any alternative on the market.

 

It hasn't been Apples MO for 3-4 years now to release a product that won't turn a giant profit. The classic Mac Pro is so far away from any of their current products in terms of product design and internals that I just don't see them doing it; a "power" version of an existing product is more likely. Spending the required resources, factory space and developers to develop a product that might make up 0.05% of Apple revenues just doesn't make much sense.

 

So far the only real argument I've seen for why Apple will release a Mac Pro is "because pros like me need one!!!", which isn't much to hold out hope for.

post #151 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

 

With the exception of the last year Mac Sales have been expanding year over year, not dropping. The last 12 months have seen nothing but supply line constraints across all of Apple's market segments.

Their sales drops are 1/12th the rates of those of the entire PC sector. In fact, the biggest contributing factor to the miniscule drops of 1.5% in Mac Sales were panel issues with the iMac, Macbook AIR/Macbook Pro.

I would add that the person you responded to didn't look at the macbook pro pricing prior to the retina models. They always had a $2200 model, and they still have an $1800 model with the old version. It may not seem as compelling, but it's there.

 

 

Quote:

 

The world is waiting on Samsung, LG, SHARP and whatever other IPS/LED panel manufacturers to get their crap together and stop constraining supplies to drive up the rates in an attempt to compensate for their own mishandling of business and collusion fees that Samsung/LG were guilty of on more than one occasion.

 

In fact, if they don't get their crap together you can bet a new consortium of companies will create a new set of manufacturers that will produce new channels of materials. The money is available along with the expertise.

The problem is the margins on display panels aren't that great. I suspect that is why Hitachi got out of it when they basically pioneered IPS.

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

 

I'm specifically implying that the Intel C228 chipset replacing the C216 chipset will have 3  8-lane PCI-E 3.0 x16 slots instead of just 2 leaving today's systems stuck at x16,x16,x8 at most.

I get you now.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Superbass View Post

I just don't see them doing it; a "power" version of an existing product is more likely. Spending the required resources, factory space and developers to develop a product that might make up 0.05% of Apple revenues just doesn't make much sense.

That's even less likely if you examine the options. People were predicting a 6 core "imac pro" last year, and I pointed out that it would require a different logic board just to support 1-2 cpu options as nothing would be available without jumping to LGA2011. The imac has gone the route of higher end cpu and gpu options than it previously used since 2010 or so, and that is all you are likely to see. It's that way because they can't reuse most of the logic board. You're also unlikely to go any higher with gpu options. HP uses mobile quadro gpus in the Z1. The mini isn't much of a candidate because again you can't reuse much. I guess it could happen, but you would likely see a large cost increase for minimal gain. With the mac pro they're at least able to tap a fairly wide range from the $2500 model up to the 12 core.

post #152 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

Not even necessary. Most pros I know have settled on the iMac. They are quite powerful these days, though not ideal for heavy-duty rendering tasks.

True, but there are ways to use a network of iMacs to do offline rendering jobs (global illumination, ray tracing). Personally, I'd prefer the many-core solution and would love to have a 16-core Pro option in a single box as I don't have a lab full of iMacs to network.

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post #153 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by tribalogical View Post

iMac Pro?
 

Done in one.

 

The new Mac Pro will be the hardware counterpart to Final Cut Pro X.   Stylish, more compact, and be completely drool-worthly on the surface.  But when you start looking at the specifics, it will fall short.  The second release will patch a few holes, causing people who will never buy one to declare that all of the critics were just whiners and Apple knocked another one out of the park.

post #154 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post

There was a long thread back a while that discussed the MacPro and suggested the modular form might not work, but the concept is cool.

The modular idea doesn't work for a number of reasons (power/data connections) but the door is a big problem. They'd have to have variable sized doors. It also leaves uneven seams everywhere, Ive would not approve of that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergemeister 
that was posted by Marvin a while back. I just found it and was going to link.

That's a mockup of the older model too. The newer one was this one:



No optical makes more sense. That was also before finding out about the Sandia CPU cooler. Right now Apple uses massive heatsinks, which are quite expensive. The following block of metal doesn't really do anything actively, fans just blow on it to keep it cold and the copper draws the heat away from the processor - that little white square is where the processor sits:



The Sandia cooler is a part Apple can machine out of aluminium very cheaply and is a fraction of the size:



That's what led to this:



I left some PCI slots on that one because it's not clear how they can make Thunderbolt work without an IGP, the slots are just half-length. They'd allow full-length outside but again, that would be the exception.
Quote:
Originally Posted by drwam 
Apple started making flexible, expandable computers from its beginnings and have continued to make them throughout their existence. They are still the soul of the company.

There's a difference with your disney example and also the car examples that crop up. What people often forget is that the chips inside the Mac Pro that do all the work (even the ones on the GPU cards) are actually incredibly small. They are not much larger than the chips you get in a laptop or iMac. The main difference is they get hotter so a significant portion of the Mac Pro design is for cooling. Using advanced cooling methods means those chips can fit into a smaller space.

You can see that today - the super slim iMac performs at the level of a 2009 Mac Pro, significantly outperforms its GPU - and yet the iMac is whisper quiet at full load. Intel and NVidia just improved performance per watt.

The bulk of the Mac Pro doesn't represent high performance but cooling inefficiency just like the mainframes that preceded it. The size of the storage represents the lack of areal density.

Some people see the Mac Pro as highlighting the best of computing but it really showcases the worst of it. The iMac and iPad represent the best of it because they hide the inefficiency to the point that you can't tell there is any. The iPad especially because it's passively cooled and everything is designed around real-time interaction.

Right now, some people are still in the phase of 'you can't do xyz with anything less than a Mac pro' and the scenarios get ever more elaborate but the fact is that people are doing the highest-end workflows without them on the workstation side and hundreds of server blades doing the processing:





When I saw those films (Flight and Looper), I didn't know the visual effects were designed with iMacs. While some people will continue to suggest that iMacs are not for professional/high-end/intensive/tight-deadline/color-accurate work, people are using them for it. A Mac Pro will do the same job but it wouldn't necessarily improve the workflow. When it comes to local real-time workflows, the difference is not that great.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer 
I'm specifically implying that the Intel C228 chipset replacing the C216 chipset

That's designed for Haswell though. The Mac Pro will be Ivy Bridge. It would be nice if it was Haswell though.
post #155 of 192

Every year Apple should release a new Mac Pro, a single, top of the line model. 

Apple should then continue to sell the previous years models as a lower priced option.

 

This would would make them much more enterprise friendly.

Enterprise customers love predictable upgrade cycles and standardized configurations.

They also love being able to buy the same machine they bought 2 years ago and having fewer varying models.

 

2015 Mac Pro $3000

2014 Mac Pro $2500

2013 Mac Pro $2000

post #156 of 192

I come from a domain (small architecture office) that was dominated by MacPros until some years ago. Nowadays we use iMacs which allow us to do everything that is needed at a fraction of the previous cost. And the longevity of the machines is still guaranteed (I mean I don't have a computer that is unable to run the latest software only a year after purchase).

 

That said, I understand the need for, in some specific instances, of a lot of horsepower.

 

But the market for MacPro users is such a small niche market that, in my opinion Apple should:

- FIRST NOT QUIT THE MARKET, that I totally agree with

- NOT OFFER A "MAC PRO".

 

 


Apple should offer a "MacPro" PLATFORM, upon which tech savvy power users can customize everything in their computer. Up to the tiniest details from a choice of modules.

This would cater that customer base best because they could really tailor the machine to their needs.

It is, in my opinion, pointless to offer "ready made" choices.

post #157 of 192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post

Every year Apple should release a new Mac Pro, a single, top of the line model. 
Apple should then continue to sell the previous years models as a lower priced option.

This would would make them much more enterprise friendly.
Enterprise customers love predictable upgrade cycles and standardized configurations.
They also love being able to buy the same machine they bought 2 years ago and having fewer varying models.

2015 Mac Pro $3000
2014 Mac Pro $2500
2013 Mac Pro $2000

I dont think their unit sales numbers nor the drop in technology costs YoY warrant that as a viable option.

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post #158 of 192

The current direction of Apple is something that I have been wondering about for a while now, specifically the lack of focus on the high-end professional consumers served by the Mac Pro.  The iOS platform has been incredibly lucerative and successful for Apple, however there is an obvious question about the future of the Mac hardware platform.

 

In the last five years, there's been a shift which has seen huge adoption of Mac laptops and desktops by a wide variety of people.  It would seem this has just as much to do with the world's detachment from Microsoft as it does the adoption of Mac hardware.  Now that the majority of a lot of people's "computing" is via web and mobile apps, the architecture of the interface matters a lot less.  We've gone from a world where Windows was the dominant paradigm because it ran all the software, to a world where Windows is the exceptional paradigm.  One goes with Windows if they have software that doesn't run as a web app.  Otherwise, a Mac will do fine.  The triumph of Apple engineering and the computer as a consumer device.

 

The concern is three-fold.  The first is that iOS occupies a less defensible position in the market.  As devices have shorter lifespans and apps are often replicated across platforms, the iOS is less sticky than the MacOS.  Consumers seem to go from iPhones to Androids, now they're trying Blackberries again.  As long as the device 1) makes phone calls, 2) receives/sends email, 3) receives/sends texts, 4) has a decent camera, and 5) has Facebook/Instagram/Twitter/Spotify/etc, I don't think people are really bothered about the device as much as might be considered.  Prosumers, yes.  The people who read this website, probably.  But a lot of people really don't seem too bothered.  And Apple didn't help with the cable shift of the last iPhone.  All of a sudden, iPhones went from a gated community, to a fragmented community.  When you have to carry a cable for an iPhone 5 like you do with a Galaxy, they all just become phones again.

 

The second concern is the proliferation of hardware.  MacBook Pros with retina displays and without retina displays.  iPads with retina displays and iPads without retina displays.  This is a significant break from the Jobsian narrow ecosystem that made Apple so successful.  There used to be one iPad.  One MacBook.  One product at each level.  That is a luxury manufacturer logic.  You do not get a choice, for part of what you are paying the premium for is curation of the device.  Now with Tim, we see new product segments, and point-to-point competition.  Business strategy that is technically correct but again breaks the ecosystem structure.  This may seem minor, but along with the dividend payment, Apple is being run as a business rather than as a product religion.  Last time this happened, it wasn't long before the company ended up replicating the dominant industry logic.

 

That comes to the third point, which is the very broken pro user market.  Final Cut X was the first debacle.  Apple took a long time to capture that attention, and actually get AVID on the run, and Adobe nearly out of the game.  They were almost home-free on the pro video editing market.  Almost...  and then Final Cut X and utter disaster for the high-end market.  Now, there's been a big shift back to AVID, and another shift to Adobe.  From a business point of view, these are niche segments that don't pay for a lot of hardware in the end.  From a spiritual point of view, those users are at the heart of the platform.  The storytellers who have the need for the best hardware.  Who's time is so valuable, they upgrade machines whenever there's a speed-bump that can save them an appreciable amount of time.  Now the lack of focus on that segment from an Apple that is so cash rich can only mean that the segment is not considered important to the company.  Huge mistake, and probably the biggest red flag here.  Even if the pro video market was a complete loss leader for Apple, the pro video market is the defence industry of the computer industry... it's where all the black budgets and high-end stuff is created, tested, and purchased.

 

I think Tim is doing a fantastic job overall with Apple.  However, the three points above are three very obvious non-Apple things that his Apple is doing, and should cause any investor cause for concern.  Apple will always be around, and will always be producing hardware, but whether or not it can maintain its mystique and related margins has to do with the company's continued ability to capture the imaginations of a relatively small number of VERY influential content creators.  If I were one of those creators today, I would be asking if Apple really cares.  And that is a big big red flag.

post #159 of 192
Originally Posted by Johnny Mozzarella View Post
Every year Apple should release a new Mac Pro, a single, top of the line model. 

Apple should then continue to sell the previous years models as a lower priced option.

 

The chips don't come out that often, and they're already doing that.


Originally Posted by jnr1212 View Post
One MacBook.

 

There was never just one MacBook. 


Now with Tim…

 

You mean with Steve. Everything out now was approved by him.


This may seem minor, but along with the dividend payment, Apple is being run as a business rather than as a product religion.

 

I rather think you can't say 'rather' yet. Steve did that, too.


Final Cut X was the first debacle.

 

And there goes your opinion.


…that segment from an Apple that is so cash rich…

 

Thing is, that segment isn't cash rich.


Even if the pro video market was a complete loss leader for Apple, the pro video market is the defence industry of the computer industry... it's where all the black budgets and high-end stuff is created, tested, and purchased.

 

Apple doesn't run "loss leaders". Apple doesn't run losses. Sounds like you want them to run more like a business than a product-oriented group…

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post #160 of 192

Thanks, Marvin, for an educational post, as always.

 

Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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Your = the possessive of you, as in, "Your name is Tom, right?" or "What is your name?"

 

You're = a contraction of YOU + ARE as in, "You are right" --> "You're right."

 

 

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