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Teardown of Apple's new Mac Pro reveals socketed, removable Intel CPU - Page 6

post #201 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cpsro View Post
 

Fanboys can be strange and myopic. I am an Apple zealot extraordinaire, but I don't let that get in the way of expressing my needs and disappointment in the direction the Mac Pro has been taken. Sorry, folks!

 

Repeating... I don't need or want GPUs (at least at this time), hence the lack of GPUs in my custom configured linux system which has twice the performance (where I need it) compared to the least-expensive 12-core Mac Pro and for about the same price. I could have received the parts last week or earlier--not wait a couple months for when they should be even cheaper (and the profit margins greater ;-)

 

I wouldn't buy a Dyson either.

Then don't buy a Mac Pro. Problem solved. Nobody ever said any Mac was perfect for everyone. We know you don't like it and won't buy it so stop complaining and trying to justify when you won't buy one. We get it. Now go build your linux box and have fun.

 

edit: Couldn't stop there. Once you get yours built, I'll finish compiling LaPack with GPU use and we'll compare results. :-)

post #202 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post

I appreciate everyone's detailed info and advice regarding my RAID setup but since it's better than I had before and I've already spent about $1000 for the components I think I'll take my chances for the time being. My next purchase will likely be a used Mac mini simply because that old PPC iMac I'm using to connect to the RAID is either not possible for Time Machine backups when using Leopard or makes iTunes wonky when using Leopard Server.

 

You are far better off not using your RAID array for time machine backups and getting a hard drive toaster ($40) and a couple bare drives that you rotate for backups.  Probably your RAID drive would be far below 4TB usage at that point.

 

Or just a couple external 4TB drives for $140 which is cheaper than bare drives but bigger to store.  Just plug one in for a couple weeks of backing up via time capsule or crashplan and then swap it for another.  Take the one you just replaced to work or a relative's house and stick in a drawer.

 

/shrug

 

That you spent $1000 is immaterial if you aren't getting the minimal level of protection a simple scheme like this provides.  

 

I have my RAID on my primary machine attached via the fastest interconnect I can use.  Since you probably have about $650 worth of drives and only $350 worth of RAID I'd pull it apart, get a $40 toaster and rotate 2 of the 4TB drives for backup leaving you with a 4TB RAID 1 for use somewhere.

post #203 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

Is it really necessary to be insulting just to say you don't get it? We KNOW you don't get it. We don't EXPECT you to get it. We gave up on you being able to understand even such simple concepts a long time ago! 1wink.gif

But seriously...

I like making videos. The laptop I use to do that cost almost $4000 after BTO options, AppleCare and taxes. A basic Pro with a nice display would come in at about the same price and be MUCH better suited to the task.

Oh, and if that Pro had a second internal SSD I wouldn't even need the fast external storage for source files. I could just archive stuff on cheap, slow USB drives.

I get a lot more than you think. I just don't mind saying what I think. But why would anyone buy a multi thousand dollar workstation to play games on or to edit home movies on? It makes no sense financially, or even for editing purposes. A high end iMac is faster for most uses, and almost as fast for software like iPhoto, and other consumer level video editing apps that can't use all those cores.

If you buy the four core model, there is little advantage to it for the home. A small speed boost for per core use, but not much else. The 300 cards aren't all that fast either. The main advantage would be for those who need vast bandwidth for dual channel Ethernet, or the 6 Thunderbolt 2 ports.
post #204 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

I get a lot more than you think. I just don't mind saying what I think. But why would anyone buy a multi thousand dollar workstation to play games on or to edit home movies on? It makes no sense financially, or even for editing purposes. A high end iMac is faster for most uses, and almost as fast for software like iPhoto, and other consumer level video editing apps that can't use all those cores.

If you buy the four core model, there is little advantage to it for the home. A small speed boost for per core use, but not much else. The 300 cards aren't all that fast either. The main advantage would be for those who need vast bandwidth for dual channel Ethernet, or the 6 Thunderbolt 2 ports.

 

The cost delta between the iMac and the Mac Pro is actually very small.

 

$3099 for a 3.7 Ghz quad core, 256GB SSD and 16 GB RAM, Dual Firepro D300

$2749 for a 3.4 Ghz quad core, 256GB SSD and 16 GB RAM, 780M 4GB DDR5

 

For $350 you get a much better platform to grow with.  That's not an unreasonable upgrade and buys you a small amount of future proofing (the greater possibility of GPU upgrades and far easier access to the SSD).

 

Yes, you need to add keyboard, mouse and monitor.  The newly announced Dell 28" 4K monitor is $699.

 

Consumer level video editing app?  You mean FCPX?  You DO realize that FCPX and iMovie appears to share the same core now right?  To the point that some unmodified FCPX plugins work in iMovie.

 

http://alex4d.com/notes/item/imovie-2013-is-consumer-ui-on-fcpx

 

http://alex4d.com/notes/item/final-cut-pro-x-plugins-work-in-imovie-2013

 

If the Mac Pro was built to be a FCPX powerhouse I would bet that it's also a iMovie powerhouse.

 

In any case FCPX is only $300.  Hardly out of the reach of the same kind of consumer that would buy any $2749 computer.

 

I wouldn't buy a top end iMac for home use.  It's just too expensive for a consumer rig for what you get.

 

I would buy the base model Mac Pro and believe it is comparatively a better value than the iMac based on the pricing above.   Mac Pros traditionally have a longer usable life than iMacs.  From a TCO perspective the Mac Pro strikes me as the better deal over the long haul.

 

So your assertion that "If you're buying this for a home machine, then you're either nuts, someone who wants to brag, or simply has too much money, and too little brains." is of little merit or forethought and based only on your own prejudices.

 

No surprise there.

post #205 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

$3099 for a 3.7 Ghz quad core, 256GB SSD and 16 GB RAM, Dual Firepro D300
$2749 for a 3.4 Ghz quad core, 256GB SSD and 16 GB RAM, 780M 4GB DDR5

Don't forget to a display to the MP.

And that is just it; I could get an iMac for my horsepower needs, 'heaviest' app used being Aperture, but then I'd get that semi glossy screen which I don't like. Matte for me, so either a MP or a Mini. I do use a Mini, but it's merely for downloading and displaying on the big screen in the living. Though I do think it's fast enough nowadays for Aperture as well and won't actually need a MP anymore. Still, I keep on buying that model every time.

Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

But why would anyone buy a multi thousand dollar workstation to play games on or to edit home movies on? It makes no sense financially, or even for editing purposes. A high end iMac is faster for most uses, and almost as fast for software like iPhoto, and other consumer level video editing apps that can't use all those cores.

If you buy the four core model, there is little advantage to it for the home. A small speed boost for per core use, but not much else. The 300 cards aren't all that fast either. The main advantage would be for those who need vast bandwidth for dual channel Ethernet, or the 6 Thunderbolt 2 ports.

Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera? The only time I see all CPU's doing their thing is when converting FLAC to .mp3. And while I do that a lot, there's no need for me to have that task finish quickly; I'd simply batch that and check back adter an hour. Or the next day, whatever.

You get this stuff; I'd like to read your opinion.
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post #206 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post



Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera? The only time I see all CPU's doing their thing is when converting FLAC to .mp3. And while I do that a lot, there's no need for me to have that task finish quickly; I'd simply batch that and check back adter an hour. Or the next day, whatever.

You get this stuff; I'd like to read your opinion.

 

I don't think it would be a problem. Just pretend I'm melgross or mathematica, either one.

post #207 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera?

 

I have one machine dedicated to transcoding and rendering. I used to use a Pro, but it was overkill since that kind of work is really CPU intensive and doesn't benefit from the dedicated graphics card and swappable storage in the Pro. I now use a mini. At $1500 it's half the price of a Pro and is almost as good. I don't care if a render job takes 20 hours or 26. I might care if I was chasing deadlines or if the difference was much larger, but it's just personal stuff so plus or minus a few hours is no big deal.

post #208 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Don't forget to a display to the MP.

And that is just it; I could get an iMac for my horsepower needs, 'heaviest' app used being Aperture, but then I'd get that semi glossy screen which I don't like. Matte for me, so either a MP or a Mini. I do use a Mini, but it's merely for downloading and displaying on the big screen in the living. Though I do think it's fast enough nowadays for Aperture as well and won't actually need a MP anymore. Still, I keep on buying that model every time.

 

The iMac never bothered me because I prefer dual monitor setups anyway.  That one is glossy is immaterial if all I have on it is email, twitter and palettes.  The 21" is most appealing in this way because that secondary monitor is smaller.

 

Quote:
 Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera? The only time I see all CPU's doing their thing is when converting FLAC to .mp3. And while I do that a lot, there's no need for me to have that task finish quickly; I'd simply batch that and check back adter an hour. Or the next day, whatever.

You get this stuff; I'd like to read your opinion.

 

 

The key limitation for the mini is obviously the lack of a GPU followed by RAM with only two slots available.  Aperture uses OpenCL.

 

Still, if most of what you are doing is converting FLAC to .mp3 then a mini would be fine.  The Mac Pro (and high end iMac) shines when you are doing complex tasks in real time (Photoshop, FCPX, etc) vs batching them for overnight.  

 

Since you already own a mini it should be trivial for you to try out a few days to see if it meets your requirements.  

 

Personally I'd get a mini since that will be bulletproof and then tinker with a $500-700 hackintosh build.

post #209 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

The iMac never bothered me because I prefer dual monitor setups anyway.  That one is glossy is immaterial if all I have on it is email, twitter and palettes.  The 21" is most appealing in this way because that secondary monitor is smaller.

The key limitation for the mini is obviously the lack of a GPU followed by RAM with only two slots available.  Aperture uses OpenCL.

A mini might be worth trying. Mavericks can use Intel HD4000 GPU for OpenCL. I've seen a computer with HD4000 graphics do some very powerful things.
post #210 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera? The only time I see all CPU's doing their thing is when converting FLAC to .mp3. And while I do that a lot, there's no need for me to have that task finish quickly; I'd simply batch that and check back adter an hour. Or the next day, whatever.


You get this stuff; I'd like to read your opinion.

I don't think it would be a problem. Just pretend I'm melgross or mathematica, either one.

No need to pretend; you're just as informative. Thanks, I thought the Mini nowadays would be powerful enough, just need confirmation.
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera?

I have one machine dedicated to transcoding and rendering. I used to use a Pro, but it was overkill since that kind of work is really CPU intensive and doesn't benefit from the dedicated graphics card and swappable storage in the Pro. I now use a mini. At $1500 it's half the price of a Pro and is almost as good. I don't care if a render job takes 20 hours or 26. I might care if I was chasing deadlines or if the difference was much larger, but it's just personal stuff so plus or minus a few hours is no big deal.

So basically in the same boat as me: no deadline, so no hurry in transcoding.

You say $1500. Is that for the Mini + display or a maxed out Mini? I got the cheapest one for under the TV, and foubd out that I can through anything at it, the little guy just marches on (zipping, raring, multiple download, eight programs - doesn't matter). Did put 8GB RAM in.
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Don't forget to a display to the MP.


And that is just it; I could get an iMac for my horsepower needs, 'heaviest' app used being Aperture, but then I'd get that semi glossy screen which I don't like. Matte for me, so either a MP or a Mini. I do use a Mini, but it's merely for downloading and displaying on the big screen in the living. Though I do think it's fast enough nowadays for Aperture as well and won't actually need a MP anymore. Still, I keep on buying that model every time.

The iMac never bothered me because I prefer dual monitor setups anyway.  That one is glossy is immaterial if all I have on it is email, twitter and palettes.  The 21" is most appealing in this way because that secondary monitor is smaller.

I agree, in this case a semi glossy wouldn't matter much to me either I guess.
Quote:

The key limitation for the mini is obviously the lack of a GPU followed by RAM with only two slots available.  Aperture uses OpenCL.

Still, if most of what you are doing is converting FLAC to .mp3 then a mini would be fine.  The Mac Pro (and high end iMac) shines when you are doing complex tasks in real time (Photoshop, FCPX, etc) vs batching them for overnight.  

Since you already own a mini it should be trivial for you to try out a few days to see if it meets your requirements.  

Personally I'd get a mini since that will be bulletproof and then tinker with a $500-700 hackintosh build.

I'll never go the hackintosh route, that's for sure. Don't want to see an update brick it.

I would like to try out the Mini for a week or so, leaving the MP alone. Thing it, it has DP and I cannot connect my 30" ACD to it without getting the $99 adapter for it. And I don't know of any friend who has it so I could borrow it...I already have an unused ACD to Dual-Link DVI Adapter lying around.
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post #211 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

A mini might be worth trying. Mavericks can use Intel HD4000 GPU for OpenCL. I've seen a computer with HD4000 graphics do some very powerful things.

 

True.  

 

However, the mildly annoying thing about Apple's current line up is getting a Core i7 with GPU costs no less than $1699 these days.  And that's gimped with a 5400 RPM 1 TB drive.  To pull these up to 256GB SSD and 16GB RAM since you can't upgrade them later pushes the total to $2,099.

 

$2999 for a Mac Pro doesn't look all that bad in comparison which is why I think Mel is completely wrong about the Mac Pro for home use.  It's easily worth $1500 more (including monitor, keyboard and mouse) off the Core i7/SSD/16GB/GT750M iMac build.

 

At $800 the Mini, even the Ivy Bridge one, represents a huge value in the current line up.

post #212 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

$2999 for a Mac Pro doesn't look all that bad in comparison

I will take a serious look at the Mini after my MP dies, but will never rule it out. They're great value for what you get. Plus I'm a sucker for tradition; always bought desktops, always the high-end. Switching to a Mini would be a first for me, but it does seem attractive price-wise.
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post #213 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post


I get a lot more than you think. I just don't mind saying what I think. But why would anyone buy a multi thousand dollar workstation to play games on or to edit home movies on? It makes no sense financially, or even for editing purposes. A high end iMac is faster for most uses, and almost as fast for software like iPhoto, and other consumer level video editing apps that can't use all those cores.

If you buy the four core model, there is little advantage to it for the home. A small speed boost for per core use, but not much else. The 300 cards aren't all that fast either. The main advantage would be for those who need vast bandwidth for dual channel Ethernet, or the 6 Thunderbolt 2 ports.

 

Mel, some people buy the nMP for the same reason people buy Audis, BMWs and other high end cars, because they can.

post #214 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

So basically in the same boat as me: no deadline, so no hurry in transcoding.

 

Right, not considering typical human impatience, of course. If the waits were a lot longer I would undoubtedly become impatient even though there's no reason a job has to finish at any particular time. Fortunately, because the tasks I use it for are CPU intensive and one can get a mini with a decent CPU, it does a decent job.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

You say $1500. Is that for the Mini + display or a maxed out Mini?

 

The latter. Mine's headless. It's connected to the living room TV via HDMI but that never gets used. I control it with my laptop via screen sharing.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

I would like to try out the Mini for a week or so, leaving the MP alone. Thing it, it has DP and I cannot connect my 30" ACD to it without getting the $99 adapter for it. And I don't know of any friend who has it so I could borrow it.

 

Buy the adapter and try it out. If you decide the mini setup is good you'll need the adapter anyway. If it's not a config that makes you happy, return the adapter. That seems like a very fair and ethical application of the return policy.

post #215 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Switching to a Mini would be a first for me, but it does seem attractive price-wise.

 

We're getting new Macs for various Pro Tools systems at work. The radio studios just went with minis. We probably would on the TV side too, except that we occasionally need to play high-bandwidth video on ours. I'm not convinced the HD4000 in the mini is up to the task so we're waiting for a Pro. If not for that single demanding requirement, I think a mini would have been perfectly capable of hosting a professional audio-for-video workstation.

 

Speaking of minis, has anyone heard anything about when we can expect new ones? I need one at home and don't want to buy the current model when a refresh must be imminent.

 

I don't expect Haswell to make any difference, but I'm hoping (probably vainly) for a major graphics upgrade (please please please Iris Pro please please please!).


Edited by v5v - 1/10/14 at 9:53am
post #216 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

You say $1500. Is that for the Mini + display or a maxed out Mini?

The latter. Mine's headless. It's connected to the living room TV via HDMI but that never gets used. I control it with my laptop via screen sharing.

I'm surprised they range from $699 to $1,399 (2.6GHz i7, 16RAM, 256SSD). Tech has gotten so cheap it's becoming a difficult thing to look back at old invoices lol)
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

I would like to try out the Mini for a week or so, leaving the MP alone. Thing it, it has DP and I cannot connect my 30" ACD to it without getting the $99 adapter for it. And I don't know of any friend who has it so I could borrow it.
Quote:
Buy the adapter and try it out. If you decide the mini setup is good you'll need the adapter anyway. If it's not a config that makes you happy, return the adapter. That seems like a very fair and ethical application of the return policy.

That's a Top Tip; never thought about getting something and then returning it. Nver done that, will need to know in advane if they allow that. Dutch laws are...Dutch!
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

We're getting new Macs for various Pro Tools systems at work. The radio studios just went with minis. We probably would on the TV side too, except that we occasionally need to play high-bandwidth video on ours. I'm not convinced the HD4000 in the mini is up to the task so we're waiting for a Pro. If not for that single demanding requirement, I think a mini would have been perfectly capable of hosting a professional audio-for-video workstation.

That is indeed what I understand to be the main talked about downside: the GPU. I also thought that integrated graphics would be...limited. All depends what we use it it for, obviously. For me, it plays back 1080p on the TV perfectly fine, but that's not the best test for a GPU capability.
Quote:
Speaking of minis, has anyone heard anything about when we can expect new ones? I need one at home and don't want to buy the current model when a refresh must be imminent.

I don't expect Haswell to make any difference, but I'm hoping (probably vainly) for a major graphics upgrade (please please please Iris Pro please please please!).

Don't know, haven't 'heard' anything. When I took a gander at the Store, I was surprised the 3 Mini's start with an i7, while all 4 iMacs start with an i5. Like you, I don't think the Haswell CPU will make some considerable change over the current version. Skip that, possibly not much noticeable over the 2011 models.

Edit: noticed later that the cheapest Mini starts with an i7. My bad.
Edited by PhilBoogie - 1/10/14 at 12:05pm
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post #217 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

 

Speaking of minis, has anyone heard anything about when we can expect new ones? I need one at home and don't want to buy the current model when a refresh must be imminent.

 

I don't expect Haswell to make any difference, but I'm hoping (probably vainly) for a major graphics upgrade (please please please Iris Pro please please please!).

 

You could email Tim and see if you get a response. LOL.

 

I almost just pulled the trigger on a refurb mini.  Then said nah.

 

Iris Pro is highly unlikely.  HD4600 is probably the most we can hope for.

post #218 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

For me, it plays back 1080p on the TV perfectly fine, but that's not the best test for a GPU capability.

 

That would be enough for 90% of what we do because most of the time the editor gives us a "screener" (compressed) version of the video, but every so often we have to work with the same video the picture editors do which means either an animation codec (just one small step short of uncompressed) or XDCAM. In those cases having to use HD4000 would be maddening!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post
 

Iris Pro is highly unlikely.  HD4600 is probably the most we can hope for.

 

NOOOO! Then I'll have waited for nothing! They'll give us at least 5000, won't they? Please say we'll get SOME flavour of Iris, even if it's "Amateur!" :)

post #219 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

 

That would be enough for 90% of what we do because most of the time the editor gives us a "screener" (compressed) version of the video, but every so often we have to work with the same video the picture editors do which means either an animation codec (just one small step short of uncompressed) or XDCAM. In those cases having to use HD4000 would be maddening!

 

NOOOO! Then I'll have waited for nothing! They'll give us at least 5000, won't they? Please say we'll get SOME flavour of Iris, even if it's "Amateur!" :)

 

If you can borrow one you should just try it.  The HD4000 is about as fast as the 330M in my old 2010 MBP.  The HD4600 around 50% faster than that which isn't too too bad if that's all we get.

 

Obviously HD5000 or Iris Pro would be better but I'm guessing the i7-4702MQ as the $799 mini if we get a refresh at all.  I think that corresponds to the older 3615QM but I'm not sure.

post #220 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

That would be enough for 90% of what we do because most of the time the editor gives us a "screener" (compressed) version of the video, but every so often we have to work with the same video the picture editors do which means either an animation codec (just one small step short of uncompressed) or XDCAM. In those cases having to use HD4000 would be maddening!

The issue with the Mini would be the hard drive. The Blackmagic drive speed test shows which video quality is usable on the chosen drive:



The PCIe SSD drives are very fast, it shows the formats and resolution at the bottom (uncompressed 4444 10-bit reads are 4th column):



If Apple updates the Mini to use a PCIe SSD along with a standard HDD, the SSD will allow playback of high bitrate codecs no problem. Video memory could have been an issue before for 4K but this is likely why they upped it to 1GB. The Macbook Air checks all the boxes:


Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

NOOOO! Then I'll have waited for nothing! They'll give us at least 5000, won't they? Please say we'll get SOME flavour of Iris, even if it's "Amateur!" 1smile.gif

The 4600 can actually be faster than the 5000 as the 5000 is in a lower TDP chip. I don't think they'll put Iris Pro in the base model but they used Iris Pro in the entry MBP and they normally use the same chip in the Mini. I could see them hitting the same entry price with a dual i5 with 4600. Then if they went with a quad i7 with Iris Pro (i7-4750HQ), it would be $899. For server use, they'd be better off with a quad i7 with 4600 but it really doesn't make that big of a difference. They can replace both the $799 and $999 model with an $899 model and if people want it configured as a server, they'd just buy a license for OS X Server BTO. Some people might just want the entry Mini with 256GB SSD as a dedicated server.

They might go with soldered RAM though. This would be ok if the entry came with 4GB and the $899 had 8GB and had options for 16GB.

An $899 Mini BTO 16GB RAM $200, BTO 256GB SSD $200 = $1299.
post #221 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

The issue with the Mini would be the hard drive.
The PCIe SSD drives are very fast, it shows the formats and resolution at the bottom (uncompressed 4444 10-bit reads are 4th column):

 

I'm confused (as usual). Please bear with me -- I try hard but I'm just not that bright.

 

I thought drive speed was only half the equation. Assuming a drive that can deliver enough bytes per time interval, a working system then requires a graphics processor capable of figuring out which pixels go where and assigning them all spots on the screen sixty times per second. My understanding is that uncompressed video places much higher demands on the GPU than something like h.264. Is that correct?

 

So, playing back uncompressed 10-bit 4:4:4 would require not only a fast drive but also a very capable GPU, right?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

They can replace both the $799 and $999 model with an $899 model and if people want it configured as a server, they'd just buy a license for OS X Server BTO.

 

That makes perfect sense, but I don't think they'll do it. I'm betting that buyer expectations almost force Apple to maintain a model specifically designated as a server. They'll probably also retain dual drives for the same reason. You're right that there's really no reason to do so other than making it easy for buyers to grab the right one.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

An $899 Mini BTO 16GB RAM $200, BTO 256GB SSD $200 = $1299.

 

I'd buy that (assuming it has a decent GPU!). :lol:

post #222 of 281

My 2012 iMac is not showing great write speeds...  They start off at 288, then start falling, down to 120.  

 

What's up with that?

 

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 #223 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post
 

 

You could email Tim and see if you get a response. LOL.

 

I almost just pulled the trigger on a refurb mini.  Then said nah.

 

Iris Pro is highly unlikely.  HD4600 is probably the most we can hope for.

 

That is kind of likely for the reasons you've mentioned before about spacing out configurations. If it's accompanied by a price increase, I would expect them to use Iris Pro. Note that 2011->2012 they moved to a more expensive cpu on the mid range model and dropped dedicated graphics. Those dedicated graphics weren't very good anyway, but that may have been the point. They were using cpu hardware comparable to the 15" mbp over the last couple iterations. Right now that would mean Iris Pro quad, drop back to dual core or move to a cpu option that differs from what is used in the mbp line. It's just a matter of which route they go with it. I think it's extremely unlikely that we'll face a cancelled mini. Apple typically pares down a line if sales do not justify multiple base configurations. I do not see them going from 3 to 0. If it wasn't for the divergence from their pattern of sharing as much hardware as possible, I would say the 4600 is almost a guarantee.

post #224 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post
 

 

The key limitation for the mini is obviously the lack of a GPU followed by RAM with only two slots available.  Aperture uses OpenCL.

 

Still, if most of what you are doing is converting FLAC to .mp3 then a mini would be fine.  The Mac Pro (and high end iMac) shines when you are doing complex tasks in real time (Photoshop, FCPX, etc) vs batching them for overnight.  

I missed this one. I agree on ram, although a lot of people would be well served by 16GB, which is possible with the mini. I see a lot of frequent claims that Aperture uses OpenCL, yet I haven't been able to find any references from Apple either in its required specs to run Aperture or their developer pages. Photoshop uses OpenCL a little, but it's not that significant. I've looked at the barefeats tests, and they're a bit contrived. For example one involved running liquify, yet they used big swipes, presumably producing a lot of topological errors in the mesh that required quite a bit of weird calculation. Warp is another, along with lighting effects. Some of those things were incredibly slow when first introduced. Today they run well on a mini. For that one if you're bound by ram, turn off thumbnails and things. If you have to deal with 100+ layers you're mostly reliant on labels anyway. I can't speak for FCPX. I can use Premiere. I barely know FCPX. Typically if I need to know how it runs something, I look up that specific function. I just don't necessarily think he would be truly hindered by the mini unless 32GB is compelling within 12-18 months (mid duty cycle imo).

post #225 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

The cost delta between the iMac and the Mac Pro is actually very small.

$3099 for a 3.7 Ghz quad core, 256GB SSD and 16 GB RAM, Dual Firepro D300
$2749 for a 3.4 Ghz quad core, 256GB SSD and 16 GB RAM, 780M 4GB DDR5

For $350 you get a much better platform to grow with.  That's not an unreasonable upgrade and buys you a small amount of future proofing (the greater possibility of GPU upgrades and far easier access to the SSD).

Yes, you need to add keyboard, mouse and monitor.  The newly announced Dell 28" 4K monitor is $699.

Consumer level video editing app?  You mean FCPX?  You DO realize that FCPX and iMovie appears to share the same core now right?  To the point that some unmodified FCPX plugins work in iMovie.

http://alex4d.com/notes/item/imovie-2013-is-consumer-ui-on-fcpx

http://alex4d.com/notes/item/final-cut-pro-x-plugins-work-in-imovie-2013

If the Mac Pro was built to be a FCPX powerhouse I would bet that it's also a iMovie powerhouse.

In any case FCPX is only $300.  Hardly out of the reach of the same kind of consumer that would buy any $2749 computer.

I wouldn't buy a top end iMac for home use.  It's just too expensive for a consumer rig for what you get.

I would buy the base model Mac Pro and believe it is comparatively a better value than the iMac based on the pricing above.   Mac Pros traditionally have a longer usable life than iMacs.  From a TCO perspective the Mac Pro strikes me as the better deal over the long haul.

So your assertion that "If you're buying this for a home machine, then you're either nuts, someone who wants to brag, or simply has too much money, and too little brains." is of little merit or forethought and based only on your own prejudices.

No surprise there.

Your monetary assessment looks pretty bad. That's a big price difference. This is NOT a $2749 computer. Using your own numbers, it's a $3,900 dollar computer, and FCP brings that to $4,200. That's a pretty big difference in price. So unless you're editing your kids activities in 4k, the slight performance difference isn't going to be that noticeable. iMovie will perform well with both models. A 10% performance difference more or less isn't going to be that important. If you use Photoshop, that top line iMac will be faster, as will be most other activities.

So perhaps my description was immoderate, but my reasoning isn't.
post #226 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

My understanding is that uncompressed video places much higher demands on the GPU than something like h.264. Is that correct?

No, they are both uncompressed during playback. If the H.264 is decoded on the GPU, it would actually put more load on the GPU. The weak point is getting the data to it. The GPU is always rendering at 60 FPS for screen refreshes.

You can see here an old Macbook Air with weak integrated graphics running 4K RED video no problem:



If the RED video is decoded on the Air CPU, it chokes because the CPU isn't fast enough. Decoding it using the Red Rocket produces uncompressed frames, which then get passed through the GPU to draw inside the application interface.

Video resolution impacts GPU performance so 4K takes more resources than 1080p but the weak point in playback of uncompressed video is the host drive. There's a calculator here:

http://web.forret.com/tools/video_fps.asp?width=1920&height=1080&fps=30&space=rgb444&depth=8

4444 1080p 8-bit is 186MB/s. Normal hard drives can't read that fast. You don't always just need real-time either, you'd scrub through the video so you need the data faster than real-time.
post #227 of 281

After a bit of research, I am adding a new iMac to my mix at work in preparation for a couple of big projects this year.

 

 

My current mini did not fair well in speed tests with the apps I will use; compared to my current iMac it was taking 2 to 3 times as long to complete tasks.  Worse, any CPU-intensive rendering makes it sound like a tea kettle in a very short time.  When it was bought it did what it was needed for very well, but as my needs have changed it can't keep up.  

 

The Mac Pro looked very interesting indeed... until the speed results started coming in.  The quad I got to play with was slower than my 2012 iMac, despite being clocked higher; data I've seen online for the same apps show the hex to only be marginally faster at those apps, but slower at "regular" apps.  For the price, especially after adding a display, I just simply can't jump at it.   (already have TB externals)

 

The iMac is the sweet spot.  For less than the nMP, it comes with the display which is gorgeous.  It also is fast as heck and handles heat far better than the mini.  Just gotta figure out where to place it in the office (which is tiny); would have had the same problem with the MP, however, as there was no way it would replace the iMac for certain tasks.

 

Specs:  27", 3.5GHz quad, 32GB RAM, 1TB Flash Drive, GTX 780M, Apple Care  TOTAL= $4118  ($1300 less than a MP, before a display and before adding software licenses)

 

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 #228 of 281
I"m not sure this was the Mac Pro thread that aftermarket PCI3 SSDs for Macs were discussed but I'm posting it here anyway…

This bot has been removed from circulation due to a malfunctioning morality chip.

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This bot has been removed from circulation due to a malfunctioning morality chip.

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post #229 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

Don't forget to a display to the MP.

And that is just it; I could get an iMac for my horsepower needs, 'heaviest' app used being Aperture, but then I'd get that semi glossy screen which I don't like. Matte for me, so either a MP or a Mini. I do use a Mini, but it's merely for downloading and displaying on the big screen in the living. Though I do think it's fast enough nowadays for Aperture as well and won't actually need a MP anymore. Still, I keep on buying that model every time.
Do you think I could get by with just a Mini, instead of my current dual quad 2.whatever GHz, RAM that never gets used et cetera? The only time I see all CPU's doing their thing is when converting FLAC to .mp3. And while I do that a lot, there's no need for me to have that task finish quickly; I'd simply batch that and check back adter an hour. Or the next day, whatever.

You get this stuff; I'd like to read your opinion.

Well, there is a major price delta here. Of course, the Mac Pro will be faster. The graphics performance is much better than that of the Mini. It's too bad the glossy iMac monitor bothers you, as otherwise, the monitor is quite good.

For home use, a lot depends on how important the performance difference really matters. How large are your photo files? These days, even a Mini is pretty fast, if you buy the top model. It's just that pesky graphics performance, or lack of, that won't do Open CL much good. If you have 20MP files, even a Mini will work fine. But if you're working 16 bit 80MP files, AND you are comping several, then the Mimi will begin to bog down.

I really don't think that the Mac Pro is a sensible choice for home use. I hope people understand what I mean by by home use. If video or other area is a major interest, and you display your work, that doesn't really qualify as "home use". So if you have a high quality camera, video recorder, or some such thing, then it qualifies as an avocation. But if you're using it for your kids stuff, vacation pics or video, then unless money isn't really a concern, this is way overkill.

So a choice between a top iMac and a Mac Pro, that favors the Mac Pro for "home" use, as far as I'm concerned, is a bad idea. But the performance difference between a top Mini is greater, as is the price.

Many Apple stores will allow you to try a few photos or a video that isn't too big in the store, so you can see for yourself if the Mini is ok, or whether the Mac Pro is better, if they have the config you want, or close to it.
post #230 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by hmm View Post

I don't think it would be a problem. Just pretend I'm melgross or mathematica, either one.

That comment wasn't necessary. Do it again, and you'll get deleted.
post #231 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by OldCodger73 View Post

Mel, some people buy the nMP for the same reason people buy Audis, BMWs and other high end cars, because they can.

That's the point I was making.
post #232 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Your monetary assessment looks pretty bad. That's a big price difference. This is NOT a $2749 computer. Using your own numbers, it's a $3,900 dollar computer, and FCP brings that to $4,200. That's a pretty big difference in price. So unless you're editing your kids activities in 4k, the slight performance difference isn't going to be that noticeable. iMovie will perform well with both models. A 10% performance difference more or less isn't going to be that important. If you use Photoshop, that top line iMac will be faster, as will be most other activities.

So perhaps my description was immoderate, but my reasoning isn't.

 

The $2749 27" iMac is indeed $2749.  If you add FCPX then it's more but that's immaterial if you aren't going to use FCPX.  The POINT is that iMovie and FCPX are now very similar under the hood.  The comment that "consumer grade video software" won't use all the cores is likely no longer true for iMovie 13.  

 

If you want to add $500 to the price of the Mac Pro for the monitor keyboard and mouse that would be fair.  That makes the monetary equation:

 

$2749 for the iMac vs $3599 for the Mac Pro.  Higher but you get to pick which monitor you want.

 

None of the choices are $3900. I have no idea why you cannot add.  

post #233 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bergermeister View Post
 

My current mini did not fair well in speed tests with the apps I will use; compared to my current iMac it was taking 2 to 3 times as long to complete tasks.  Worse, any CPU-intensive rendering makes it sound like a tea kettle in a very short time.  When it was bought it did what it was needed for very well, but as my needs have changed it can't keep up.  

 

Well that's the downside of small machines like the mini.  Dissipating heat is an issue.  Haswelll should help quite a bit in terms of performance if the apps were GPU limited.  

 

Quote:
The iMac is the sweet spot.  For less than the nMP, it comes with the display which is gorgeous.  It also is fast as heck and handles heat far better than the mini.  Just gotta figure out where to place it in the office (which is tiny); would have had the same problem with the MP, however, as there was no way it would replace the iMac for certain tasks.

 

/shrug

 

Mount them on the walls.

 

http://store.apple.com/us/buy-mac/imac-vesa

 

Personally I'd still get the Mac Pro for your use with the quad core and upgrade to the D700.  There will simply be things you can do on that that you cannot on the iMac.  Like with the mini you may find that the iMacs you buy today simply will not hold up to the use you will have for tomorrow. 

 

As a second machine the min I'd still go with is the 27" iMac with 256GB SSD, GTX 780M 4GB VRAM and 3.5 Quad i7.  That's $2549.  

 

$1500 more you get dual D700s and probably will be able to get an aftermarket SSD upgrade eventually.  

 

It's not like you need monitors for your render farm and you now have a machine with 6GB VRAM.  And you can use your current iMac in Target Display Mode in a pinch.

 

http://forums.adobe.com/thread/1326404

 

Never underestimate the ability of Adobe developers to use up resources.  Given that one of the two GPUs isn't used to render video anyway but dedicated to compute needs I can imagine someone wanting more VRAM in a couple years time. 

 

"I was particularly surprised by how much video memory Final Cut Pro appeared to take up on the primary (non-compute) GPU. I measured over 3GB of video memory usage while on a 1080p display, editing 4K content. The D700 is the only configuration Apple offers with more than 3GB of video memory. I’m not exactly sure how the experience would degrade if you had less, but throwing more VRAM at the problem doesn’t seem to be a bad idea."

 

I wouldn't buy the iMac with the 2GB VRAM options if I were you.

 

You may wish to go hexa over the quad.  And you could buy a 12 core with the base D300s and swap with the D700 next year then sell the entry level quad MP as an entry level MP.

post #234 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

If the H.264 is decoded on the GPU, it would actually put more load on the GPU.

 

I don't know if I've been given bad information or if I just misunderstood what i've been told, but either way I was obviously wrong. Thanks for the help.

 

It makes sense that having to "reconstruct" a compressed video feed would be more demanding than playing an uncompressed file, but then why are modest systems able to play movies from the iTunes Store just fine while being incapable of even a few frames per second of XDCAM or Animation-encoded material? Is it really strictly storage throughput? Or is it like the Red example you provided -- the stream needs to be "decoded" and overwhelms the CPU?

 

Further, what then is the role/benefit of a powerful GPU? For video editing, how is a dedicated GPU better than just integrated graphics?

 

I realize that to you this is like leading a brain-damaged monkey through a trail of peanuts so I appreciate the hand holding!

post #235 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Marvin View Post

The issue with the Mini would be the hard drive. The Blackmagic drive speed test shows which video quality is usable on the chosen drive:

Looks like the 840 pro is fast enough. You can put one in into a mini. Likely though large files will come on an external drive making this point moot.
post #236 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

I don't know if I've been given bad information or if I just misunderstood what i've been told, but either way I was obviously wrong. Thanks for the help.

It makes sense that having to "reconstruct" a compressed video feed would be more demanding than playing an uncompressed file, but then why are modest systems able to play movies from the iTunes Store just fine while being incapable of even a few frames per second of XDCAM or Animation-encoded material? Is it really strictly storage throughput? Or is it like the Red example you provided -- the stream needs to be "decoded" and overwhelms the CPU?

Further, what then is the role/benefit of a powerful GPU? For video editing, how is a dedicated GPU better than just integrated graphics?

I realize that to you this is like leading a brain-damaged monkey through a trail of peanuts so I appreciate the hand holding!

XDCAM (I think the guys were doing HD and not HD 422) played back and edited fine on a 2008 MBP using FCP7. I'd be surprised if playback were choppy in a 2012 mini. What issues have you seen and what are you using for playback?

H.264 is special because of hardware decoding built into the CPU since sandy bridge.

Transcoding circa 2014 now has GPU support in the software. Effects, renders, etc are also often dependent on GPU acceleration for performance. Prior to this year a lot of that was CUDA based. Also prior to mavericks OpenCL wasn't supported on Intel GPU. Ivy bridge's GPU is now supported even if a bit anemic. But pretty much most folks went nvidia GPU for these reasons. ATI can't do CUDA and half the stuff was CUDA based.

Take what I say here with a grain so salt. I'm a developer not a video pro but I do help those guys out from time to time.
post #237 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

why are modest systems able to play movies from the iTunes Store just fine while being incapable of even a few frames per second of XDCAM or Animation-encoded material? Is it really strictly storage throughput? Or is it like the Red example you provided -- the stream needs to be "decoded" and overwhelms the CPU?

It's both the decoding requirements and file sizes but file size tends to be the bigger bottleneck. Laptop hard drives are usually around 50MB/s so for a stream that needs 160MB/s, it will playback at 10fps or less. External drive manufacturers use uncompressed workflows to show off their drive performance:



Their stats show nearly 160MB/s for 1080p and the Pegasus handles 6 streams.
Quote:
Originally Posted by v5v View Post

Further, what then is the role/benefit of a powerful GPU? For video editing, how is a dedicated GPU better than just integrated graphics?

For video playback and basic video chopping, a dedicated GPU won't make a difference. For effects rendering, it can but the Iris Pro integrated graphics are comparable to the dedicated GPU. The dedicated GPU has an option for more than 1GB of memory though.
post #238 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by melgross View Post

Well, there is a major price delta here. Of course, the Mac Pro will be faster. The graphics performance is much better than that of the Mini. It's too bad the glossy iMac monitor bothers you, as otherwise, the monitor is quite good.

For home use, a lot depends on how important the performance difference really matters. How large are your photo files? These days, even a Mini is pretty fast, if you buy the top model. It's just that pesky graphics performance, or lack of, that won't do Open CL much good. If you have 20MP files, even a Mini will work fine. But if you're working 16 bit 80MP files, AND you are comping several, then the Mimi will begin to bog down.

The RAW's are ≈ 15MB. jpeg's 3-4MB. So no problems there. And I try to take a photo as-is, all in camera, not tumbling with it afterwards.
Quote:
I really don't think that the Mac Pro is a sensible choice for home use. I hope people understand what I mean by by home use. If video or other area is a major interest, and you display your work, that doesn't really qualify as "home use". So if you have a high quality camera, video recorder, or some such thing, then it qualifies as an avocation. But if you're using it for your kids stuff, vacation pics or video, then unless money isn't really a concern, this is way overkill.

In that case I've always bought overkill as I always bought the high-end PM/MP. I once got the Ti book, maxed out, but that thing was slow even back then. HDD being main problem as I remember.

I attended a few Pro sessions at the Apple Store this summer and was surprised to see Aperture go through 20MB RAW files like it was nothing, applying filters, creating a light-table and creating a 500MB .pdf from it - all buttery smooth. Granted, they gave us a maxed out rMBP. FCP was even no problem, nothing stalled, no waiting for something. They / technology sure have / has come a long way.
Quote:
So a choice between a top iMac and a Mac Pro, that favors the Mac Pro for "home" use, as far as I'm concerned, is a bad idea. But the performance difference between a top Mini is greater, as is the price.

I agree, and when my MP dies I will certainly include a Mini to my options as it all seems fast enough for my needs anyhow. Besides, the old MP had 4HDD bays which could be a big differentiator in choosing a Mini over a MP, but with the nMP this doesn't matter anymore. The current FD has 128GB SSD; a 256SSD + 1TB HDD FD Mini would be a great successor to the current model.
Quote:
Many Apple stores will allow you to try a few photos or a video that isn't too big in the store, so you can see for yourself if the Mini is ok, or whether the Mac Pro is better, if they have the config you want, or close to it.

That's a Top Tip. When the time comes I'll do just that.
Send from my iPhone. Excuse brevity and auto-corrupt.
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Send from my iPhone. Excuse brevity and auto-corrupt.
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post #239 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post

OWC probably cracked open champagne when they found this out.

iFixit will still give it a 2/10.
IFixit 8 / 10
post #240 of 281
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post
 

 

 

 

I wouldn't buy the iMac with the 2GB VRAM options if I were you.

 

You may wish to go hexa over the quad.  And you could buy a 12 core with the base D300s and swap with the D700 next year then sell the entry level quad MP as an entry level MP.

 

The problem I find with Adobe is that they aren't really predictable in that regard. It's possible they'll want more, but it's also possible that when they do finally have stable support, it will require a later version of OpenCL than what is supported on these due to some feature that is only guaranteed in a later specification. Generally when evaluating a purchase for its accommodation of future needs, I consider what I think might show up within 18 months. Things often take time to stabilize even after that. They have gotten a little drawn out lately, but I usually look at it as a three year purchase cycle, so 18 months is midway.

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