Originally Posted by minderbinder
Since the i7 is pretty much functionally the same as the xeon in the quad Mac Pro, seems like a totally valid comparison to me. Yes, I know there are minor differences (what besides ECC memory support?), but anything that would impact actual real world performance? Is there any reason to expect the quad MP to outperform the i7 dell?
You keep making the same mistake that others who seem to want to prove that a workstation chass machine is no better than a cheaply made home machine on all fronts.
Get over the fact that a Xeon is not an i7.
That's like calling a four cylinder engine essentially the same as an eight cylinder engine.
Sure, they are conceptually the same, but the performance is not. If it were, both sports cars and workstations would use the cheaper parts, but they don't. Workstations from every vendor will cost about the same. When Xeon machines come out from Dell, Hp, Boxx, and others, we will see, again, that Apple's machines are no more expensive, and are likely even cheaper.
For people who insist on using a home-built computer, fine, have fun with all the problems you might end up with. I built enough of them over the years.
If Apple WERE to build an i7 mini tower, it would be much less expensive also, but they don't want to.
We can argue with them about that, and you know I've been a LONG term advocate for one, but that's their choice. We have to move on from that.
If some people can't afford, or don't want to spend the money, that's up to them.
But trying to find reasons why the Mac Pro is overpriced is not helpful, because the customers for these machines, for the most part, don't care. These are very popular in scientific research. In engineering, publishing, graphics, movie editing, audio work, and esp. in Europe, where Archicad is more popular than Autocad, in architecture.
These aren't markets that can generate millions of sales a year, but it's an important market for Apple nevertheless, and they aren't constrained by price that much.
People complaining here about it isn't going to make the sightest difference to Apple, because these people aren't their customers for these machines.
My personal example comes from my older life as an electronics engineer for my own company back when. We made professional speakers and electronics for the recording industry, discos, etc. It was very expensive. But there were always some people who were willing to pay that price for the equipment to have for themselves at home. This was just before the "high end" home audio market really developed. Our products WERE expensive, really expensive, but they delivered good value for those who needed them. But we always had some people who called us up and said that they would buy our stuff if we lowered prices, or made cheaper products.
Well, we weren't about to do that, because it wasn't our market. If people were crazy enough to buy our stuff for their living room, that was up to them.
Its the same thing with the Mac Pro. It's not a home machine, and its not a machine for marginal professionals who do this part time, or who are at the edge of profitability.
When we consider where prices are relative to where they used to be years ago, even the most expensive Mac Pro now is no higher in price, and gives you vastly more. I paid $6,000 for my 950 back in the early '90's, with 8 MB RAM, a 320 MB HDD, 1 MB video memory for the onboard 2D graphics. No CD player. I bought a 2x Toshibia and machined the computer case to get it to fit (the first CD installed in a Mac here in the States, and possibly, in the world! That was another $600. The Professional keyboard was another $189.
This was early 1992. I could go on to tell you that RAM to go to 64 MB (unheard of at the time) cost over $3,000, but you would know that.
This machine was cheap when compared to low priced workstations of the time.
But now the Mac Pro IS a workstation. It has an industrial built quality. Let's leave it at that, and go on from there.
You'll probably see the end of "apologists" when people stop calling people "whiners".
There's a difference often though. I defend what Apple does if I think they are right, and I scold them when I think they are wrong. Overall, we can't argue that their strategy is wrong, because it's not.
There are some apologists out there too who defend everything, no matter what. That's wrong also.
But Apple does do some strange things, and make some odd decisions, we can agree on that.
But a lot of the "whiners" just complain about the same things over and again. That gets tiring to read. They have no intelligent solutions to what they aren't happy about. Claiming that Apple can cut large amounts off prices as solutions to their unhappiness about pricing isn't helpful, as they know nothing about manufacturing. Complaining that Apple doesn't make this or that isn't helpful either, as it changes nothing, and we've heard it all before ad nauseam.
I like to see a well thought out argument, even if I don't agree, and like getting into that, but much of it is drivel.
So what difference will a user see when running the same app on both machines? Slower app performance? More crashes? I'd like to know specifically.
I'm willing to bet the Mac Pro will perform better. Of course with the two different OS's, some of the problems will come from that as well.
I'm also willing to bet that there will be some incompatibilities at some point with either software drivers, or hardware with the home built PC.
How long you expect to keep your machine will also determine the value of it. If you expect to get a new one every two years or so, it won't seem to be such a good value as the Mac Pro will last far longer. With MS there's no knowing how long a machine will be viable.
Right now, Apple's determining the longevity of their older machines is due to moving from the PPC to Intel, so it's to be expected that they are finally phasing out eight year old machines, and shortly, all PPC machines. I imagine that the first generation 32 bit Intel machines will not be able to run later 64 bit OS's either. But MS has a plan of obsolescence that helps hardware manufacturers keep up their sales. This is well known in the industry, and has been reported upon extensively in publications such as Computerworld, Infoworld, and others over the years. A new machine today may very well not run that newer OS upgrade two years from now. Not so with the Mac.
Apple's new coming OS advances won't be seen, for the most part in Windows for years, if at all. Open CL, which has been accepted as a standard, and which will not only speed up games, but all heavy duty applications won't be available in Windows, because MS is just about the only company not to sign on. They will continue to promote DirectX which is primarally geared towards games, and is said to have little functionallity in professional apps.
Grand Central, another Apple technology is being said to make it much easier to parallelize software for multiple cores, also exclusive to Apple. Much software won't even need to be modified to work with it, though tweaking software will result in larger gains.
We will see a major improvement in file structure with ZFS when it arrives for client machines. MS has been trying to get Cairo into an OS since the early '90's, and hasn't been able to figure it out in all that time.
We will also get rez independence well before MS does.
I could go on, but I hope you get the point.
Wait a couple weeks?
How about a month or more?