Originally Posted by mjteix
You fail to understand that:
- using only one CPU in a motherboard DESIGNED for dual-cpus, will restrict performance a lot.
The Anandtech benchmark of the Mac Pro compared a C2D machine vs a Mac Pro with one processor disabled.http://www.anandtech.com/mac/showdoc.aspx?i=2832&p=9
Single 3.0Ghz Xeon performed about as well (5% slower) as a 2.93 C2EE X6800.
even for rendering.http://www.anandtech.com/mac/showdoc.aspx?i=2832&p=11
Gaming benches sucked of course. But not much worse than the quad 3.0 and sometimes better.
If you have benchmarks to show that a Mac Pro with a single CPU enabled takes a huge hit that would be good to see. But frankly that window of opportunity is passing so it hardly matters. I say
that Apple could do this tomorrow but the actual probability approaches Zero.
Now I don't know how AnandTech disabled the second processor so that could be a factor.
- given Apple's price policy on the Mac Pro, they will never release a single processor version for under $1999 or people will get the single CPU version and upgrade it to dual-cpu elsewhere for cheaper than what Apple can offer. Making the motherboard not-upgradable may add additional costs making the single-CPU version even more expensive
The only model it could cannibalize is the dual 2.0 model. Dell's single 2.0Ghz CPU Precision costs $1549 price. Adding a 2nd 2.0Ghz CPU at Dell costs $429. Takes you to $1978...cheaper than the Mac Pro dual 2.0Ghz by $200 with slightly different configuration.
So worst case is you either
a) decrease the $2200 2.0 Ghz dual dual by $500 to $1700 for a single dual and folks that want to buy a $375 Xeon 5130 with stock heatsink can save a whopping $130 to invalidate AppleCare/Warranty and potentially brick their Mac Pro and have to buy a new MB out of pocket. If you've seen the teardown sites for the Mac Pro, Apple did NOT make the CPUs easy to get to. $1700 (or $1699) is $100 more than I said but far below your $1999 assertion.
The 2.66Ghz model is safe because to get dual dual is $700 ea. retail. $1700+$1400-ebay value of a 2.0Ghz doesn't sound awesome. $1700+1700 for 3Ghz is also more expensive. Dunno that anyone is selling the 3.0Ghz Clovertons.
I guess you could save a couple hundred bucks by using 2.66Ghz Clovertons. Meh.
b) not be nice and epoxy the terminator (dummy) CPU into the socket. Good luck getting that out without wrecking the MB and on a complexity scale that's a lot lower than doing a new MB for C2D and having a whole set of new SKUs.
- whatever the costs of R&D/Testing, manufacturing a desktop motherboard will cost 1/4 (or so) of a server/workstation one,
Except there are likely no (significant) R&D/Testing, Manufacturing, etc costs of offering a single Woodcrest Mac Pro. You don't have to spin a new board.
- There is no "ohh and ahhh" making this today or tomorrow with the woodcrest (dual-core) cpus.
So? The oohs and ahhs come from the top end 3.2Ghz Penryn Mac Pros. This is just a nice, and easy thing to do in order to offer a lower cost of entry for a Mac Tower.
However, (see I am not always against you).
It could be more easily done and appropriate with the upcoming penryn chips/chipset. Why?
- New chipset, new motherboard: can be design from the groundup to use ONE or TWO cpus (without compromising performances).
Well given that folks expect the Penryns Mac Pros to come out in the next couple months there's no way Apple is going to offer a single CPU Woodcrest anytime soon unless Intel gives Apple a bigger price break on the 2.66Ghz Woodcrests. But presumably they have better things to do with their 65nm fabs than churn out more Woodcrests but maybe not.
- Most of the chips that will be available in November are Quads starting at $209 (quad 2.0GHz/1333) which is the current price of DC 2.0GHz mobile chip! (Today, a dual-core tower desktop for $1499-1999 is ridiculous, but a well made/spec'd quad in the same price range would be nice).
They still quote $316 or something for the 2.0Ghz Woodcrests. Sure, it would be silly to use a Woodcrest, kinda like it was silly to use the Yonah in the Mini for as long as Apple did from Intel's published prices. They could use a Wolfdale but its kinda like why?
So yes, I agree that a single 2.5Ghz Harpertown would be a nice CPU to use in the $1499-$1699 range.
The other alternative is Intel has a fire sale on some 65nm parts and Apple does that for a year instead.
- So we could be talking 2/3 models of single-cpu quads and 2/3 models of dual-cpus (octo-core) Mac Pros.
Now let's suppose that at the top we'll get a dual-quad 3.2/1600 for $3999. and at the bottom a single-quad for $1499. how can it work, with the prices we know:
$1499 single-quad 2.50GHz/1333 Xeon $316 -- almost as fast as the current quad 2.66 MP for $1000 less, and maybe faster than a quad 2.40GHz/1066 Kentsfield-based computer
$1999 single-quad 2.80GHz/1600 Xeon $797 (+$481)
$2499 single-quad 3.20GHz/1600 Xeon $1,172 (+$375)
$2999 dual-quad 2.80GHz/1600 Xeon 2x$797 (+$422)
$3499 dual-quad 3.00GHz/1600 Xeon 2x$958 (+$322)
$3999 dual-quad 3.20GHz/1600 Xeon 2x$1,172 (+$428)
That's perfect. From your lips to Job's ears. If they could meet the $1499 price point that gives folks a Mac Tower that doesn't cost $2200.
Preferably without doing something to eliminate the option to upgrade to dual CPUs as Apple has done in the past.
And that with just 4 new chips and a redesigned motherboard. Of course, we all hope that Apple will make 2GB of RAM standard, and have a trio of new video cards to offer.
Sure thing. No disagreement.