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Hands on with Apple's new Intel Xeon E5, dual AMD FirePro equipped Mac Pro - Page 5

post #161 of 170

I don't like the prosumer term at all, in fact I find it an insult in a way.



You're right, it is insulting if you imagine foolishly that doing things on your Mac that people have made careers out of somehow makes you a 'Pro' and the machinery you use somehow qualifies as professional level - it doesn't. It's about consumers with pro aspirations, which really is just a vanity for marketing purposes. It goes back to that "empowering" idea that a computer with Word makes you a writer, that iMovie makes you some kind of Hollywood director. Call it elitist if you like, but you learn that stuff the hard way over years, not in your MacBook on a long weekend.

I can get a splinter out of my toe, but that doesn't make me a surgeon, nor my sterilised needle a scalpel. But if I try to do amateur brain surgery with my needle, and it fails, somehow the ambulance crew are old school guys who just don't get it?

Prosumer is the right, faintly derogatory term for enthusiastic amateurism. It has it's place, but it's not the same thing as doing professional work with professional tools, which the Mac sometimes manages and sometimes doesn't.
post #162 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by fearless View Post
 

I don't like the prosumer term at all, in fact I find it an insult in a way.



You're right, it is insulting if you imagine foolishly that doing things on your Mac that people have made careers out of somehow makes you a 'Pro' and the machinery you use somehow qualifies as professional level - it doesn't. It's about consumers with pro aspirations, which really is just a vanity for marketing purposes. It goes back to that "empowering" idea that a computer with Word makes you a writer, that iMovie makes you some kind of Hollywood director. Call it elitist if you like, but you learn that stuff the hard way over years, not in your MacBook on a long weekend.

I can get a splinter out of my toe, but that doesn't make me a surgeon, nor my sterilised needle a scalpel. But if I try to do amateur brain surgery with my needle, and it fails, somehow the ambulance crew are old school guys who just don't get it?

Prosumer is the right, faintly derogatory term for enthusiastic amateurism. It has it's place, but it's not the same thing as doing professional work with professional tools, which the Mac sometimes manages and sometimes doesn't.

 

I didn't coin the term prosumer, but it's how other companies define the market they are going after.  Example.  Someone that would buy an Apogee 64 channel AD/DA Thunderbolt system is NOT considered a prosumer.  But someone that bought an Apogee One would be.

 

Actually, it has been proven that one can use what people and the market would generally consider a prosumer grade product for something that would normally use a professional grade product instead.  Case in point, Michael Moore used iMovie on an iMac to do the editing for one of his documentaries. Why?  Because the type of movie he made didn't have fancy special effects, it was more of a home movie using decent video cameras that were meant more for low end professional movie making like pornos and low budget work, but it still did the job.  So, one can use something that is normally used for lower budget productions and still do something that's used in a professional manner.


So, what term do you like?  Low budget?  Amateur? Prosumer?

 

It's just a bunch of marketing speak to identify a market and the behavior, buying patterns, etc. so they can make and market products for those potential customers.


Actually, out of all of the terms I can think of, Prosumer is actually giving some class to that market segment.  At least they aren't calling you low budget amateurs are they?  I think Prosumer is a great word if you want know my opinion.  BTW, there are a lot of things sold as "Professional" products that should be classified as low budget junk.  But the Pros use them all of the time.  Example? Yamaha NS-10's.  HORRIBLE cheap speakers sold to the audio recording industry and probably single handily responsible as to why modern day recordings SUCK.  They enable the engineer to make the music sound good on a cheap pair of speakers, but in the process, they create bad mixes for people that have high end audio systems that want no coloration to the recordings and can easily tell a bad recording from a good quality recording because their systems are VERY detailed in how they reproduce the source material.


Edited by drblank - 10/25/13 at 5:12pm
post #163 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post
 

 

Case in point, Michael Moore used iMovie on an iMac to do the editing for one of his documentaries. Why?...

 

...They enable the engineer to make the music sound good on a cheap pair of speakers, but in the process, they create bad mixes for people that have high end audio systems that want no coloration to the recordings and can easily tell a bad recording from a good quality recording because their systems are VERY detailed in how they reproduce the source material.

I completely agree. Everything can be useful - I'm sure everyone's used iMovie for something. Peter Jackson's shot stuff on his phone. But the The Hobbit wasn't. I recently saw a claim that Final Cut X was being used on a decent-budget film being shot in California. It was - but not to cut the film. Minor detail - it was being used by a videographer on the behind-the-scenes, a job for which I'm sure it was admirably suited. Making EPKs is a fine professional gig, but it's not the same as cutting the film itself, something the marketing spin neglected to mention.

 

We're all resourceful people and the more experienced we become as professionals, the better we can judge the benefits, and limitations, of particular inexpensive equipment. 

 

When you're playing on your own, cutting your Sundance-winning feature doco on a laptop because that's all you can afford, and the subject is so gripping that nothing else matters, you have a great deal of wriggle room. It's collaboration with others on a deadline-driven workflow that really tests whether hardware and software have professional legs. Consistency, reliability, and the ability to leverage and enhance learned muscle memory is why people continue to pay solid money for sound desks they like, decent grading panels, cameras that have what's needed built in rather than bolted on... all of this matters.

post #164 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

What computer has 2 of the E5-2697 chips inside and what type of cooling does it have and how much is the box?

HP has a Z820 with them now, dual E5-2697v2 24-core. Price is $9,999 with no GPUs and no PCIe storage. That's why Apple would never offer the MP with dual 12-cores. The CPUs are $2600 each from Intel. If Apple puts a 35% markup on them x2, you're looking at $7k retail just for the CPUs. HP's price for each CPU is here:

http://h30094.www3.hp.com/product/sku/10715886/mfg_partno/722301-B21

They offer dual E5-2670 for $7139 but again no GPUs. I reckon Apple will have a 12-core with the lowest GPUs for around this price, which would mean the HP is 85% faster CPU-wise. A spare couple of quad-core minis connected via IP over Thunderbolt would make up some of the difference there though. The HP would be 25.85, the MP possibly 14, the minis 2x6.
Quote:
Originally Posted by drblank View Post

My understanding, correct me if I'm wrong, that using 2 of the same chips is not twice as fast as one.  It's only a marginal increase.

It scales very well with apps like Cinebench as the processes are extremely parallel. You can see here the X6560 6-core is 682 and the dual 6-core is about 1280:

http://www.cbscores.com

Not exactly double but 88% higher with dual processors. If it's the same deal with the E5-2697v2, that means a score of 14 for the top Mac Pro, which is lower than the last one. CPU tasks are not real-time though so it's not that big of a deal to have all the processors in the one box. The performance gains from the GPUs are far more than 1.4x if they'd used the E5-2660s. I just hope we see more OpenCL use in real-world apps.
post #165 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

It isn't excessively steep for what is offered, it is excessively steep for an entry level workstation computer. The problem is the $3000 price tag will drive people away before they even rationally consider the machine.

Frankly this is exactly the same problem the old Mac Pro had! It was way to expensive at the entry level point which had the effect of curtailing sales drastically. This machine will have exactly the same issue and two to three years from now (after the initial buying surge) Apple will be neglecting the machine and thinking about caning it.
Well no, it is the realization that there is inherent value in the electronics required to get some amount of work done. The problem is that there are many users out there that could benefit from the Mac Pro if it was priced to fit a budget. $2000 isn't an unachievable price point for a decent desktop computer yet Apple missed this mark by $1000. So a lot of midrange users get the bone again from Apple and we have to go through the drama of no Mac Pro sales in a couple of years due to nothing in the line up to drive volume. Apple really needs to try harder, I can only hope that the have a plan in place for the Mini or its replacement to address this.

Your first part of the first sentence is totally correct. Then you lose touch. Apple make great iMacs for the people you worry about.

The folks this machine is aimed at, as with all previous high end Macs, have other equipment such as cameras that cost far more than this $3,0000 Mac you feel is going to drive people away. There is a new iPad controlled Steady Cam costing $15,000. Have you checked out prices on high end Canon DSLRs or the lenses? My lenses cost more than a Mac Pro base model! My guitars cost more! My HD camera two times as much. What about a 4K video camera? The Mac is the least expensive part of many a studio set up these days.

I sold my three year old Mac Pro 8 core with screen for $6,5000 in anticipation of this new Mac Pro. The base model will be far faster and cost half that. I don't understand what you are going on about, really. Your mention of Mac mini in this discussion says it all. I might add one as a server for OS X Server but they are not in this discussion as graphics workstations!
Edited by digitalclips - 10/26/13 at 7:12am
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
Reply
From Apple ][ - to new Mac Pro I've used them all.
Long on AAPL so biased
Google Motto "You're not the customer. You're the product."
Reply
post #166 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


Your first part of the first sentence is totally correct. Then you lose touch. Apple make great iMacs for the people you worry about.

The folks this machine is aimed at, as with all previous high end Macs, have other equipment such as cameras that cost far more than this $3,0000 Mac you feel is going to drive people away. There is a new iPad controlled Steady Cam costing $15,000. Have you checked out prices on high end Canon DSLRs or the lenses? My lenses cost more than a Mac Pro base model! My guitars cost more! My HD camera two times as much. What about a 4K video camera? The Mac is the least expensive part of many a studio set up these days.

I sold my three year old Mac Pro 8 core with screen for $6,5000 in anticipation of this new Mac Pro. The base model will be far faster and cost half that. I don't understand what you are going on about, really. Your mention of Mac mini in this discussion says it all. I might add one as a server for OS X Server but they are not in this discussion as graphics workstations!

 

I think some people just don't understand that these new systems are coming with the real fast SSD storage which is expensive and that's going to be a big improvement. So, if you compare to something else with a cheap HDD, then you need to rethink it.  I think these new machines are going to be just fine.   It's more the paradigm shift away from internal drive cages, and PCI slots and moving towards external chassis for those that actually require PCI slots and lots of storage.

 

Check out NetStor as they have some nice Thunderbolt (upgradable to Thunderbolt 2) that have lots of drive bays and PCI slots.   Certainly a much better way for an investment rather than constantly having to pay for slot/drive cages/power supplies, fans, etc. when you can just buy it once and keep that investment.  I think over the course of a couple of computer upgrades, it will actually be cheaper in the long run.  What HP gives you for $3300 isn't that great.  One GPU w/4G RAM, a slow 7200rpm drive, no Thunderbolt, and one CPU isn't that great of a deal if you think about it.  I think the $3K MacPro might actually do a better job in a lot of areas. I think the fast SSD is where it's going to improve overall performance and TB2 gives us much better flexibility with I/O options.

post #167 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by seltzdesign View Post

Hmm, isn't it the other way round? I have a retina Macbook Pro and have changed the SSD for one of the OWC ones, which is a real screamer even compared to the standard one and you get a USB 3.0 case for the old Flash disc, which is also insanely fast. It was easier to get to then any other Mac before (except the first Aluminium Macbook maybe), and over the years I have changed the hard drive and other things in almost every Mac since around 2000. Its 8 screws and you're there.

Yet I cant upgrade RAM as it is soldered in, so I went for the max from the start. So at the moment it seems easier to change the disc than the RAM.

I understand, but when you did that, you lost your warrantee. If you need to take it to Apple for repair, you must put the original SSD back.
post #168 of 170
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

I understand, but when you did that, you lost your warrantee. If you need to take it to Apple for repair, you must put the original SSD back.

I've never had an issue with having installed other drives or RAM. They also don't seem to care if you remove your DVD drive and replace it with another HDD so long as that isn't the issue you're having.
post #169 of 170

"In addition to a fast, multiple core Intel CPU, the Mac Pro makes dedicated use of one GPU for driving video displays while the second is reserved for computing, from audio and graphics processing to scientific number crunching or 3D rendering."

 

Daniel, I've found some information on OpenCL-enabled applications but not too much. Once you get your Mac Pro, it would be nice if you would write an article on the availability of OS X OpenCL-enabled applications. I've seen FCP, Photoshop CS6, even Handbrake mentioned. Documenting how much faster they run when using the FirePro GPUs might help people make a decision on whether this micro-Cray is worth it.

 

Have you read anything about how one might run the Mac Pro in a cluster configuration? I haven't seen whether TB2 can be used as the high-speed interface between them. I checked Dauger's website and Pooch doesn't mention this.

post #170 of 170
Not hands on. Nice linkbait tho.
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