Mac Pro petition gains traction as pro users seek information

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  • Reply 141 of 211
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 15,375moderator
    gwmac wrote:
    Why do you need a Xeon if you are only using the one CPU option? The Xeon line is way more expensive with little advantage to the Core i7 when you are only choosing the 1 CPU option. Apple could price a Mac Pro with a Core i7 as the low end option

    This is a conclusion arrived at often but it's not the Xeons that keep the prices high on the entry models. The entry Xeon chip is $294:

    http://ark.intel.com/products/41313/Intel-Xeon-Processor-W3530-(8M-Cache-2_80-GHz-4_80-GTs-Intel-QPI)

    The Core i7-3960X is $1000:

    http://ark.intel.com/products/63696/Intel-Core-i7-3960X-Processor-Extreme-Edition-(15M-Cache-3_30-GHz)

    Apple would sell this 6-core i7 for at least $3200.

    When products sell in such low volume, the margins jump high. They went up at least $300 since the Mac Pro was introduced.

    $2499 - $294 CPU - $260 LGA 1366 motherboard - $115 Radeon 5770 GPU - $150 1KW PSU - $200 enclosure - 3GB RAM $50 - 1TB HDD $100 - Superdrive $100 - Magic Mouse/Keyboard $118

    That's still $1112 in the clear i.e 80% profit margins.

    If you take the component cost + 25% profit, you get $1387 x 1.25 = $1734

    Similar spec machines cost around this:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883108492
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883147724

    Yeah, there's the OS and R&D etc on top of the components as with the other models so the margins will be somewhere between 25-80% but likely nearer 80%. They padded them by $300 at one point so they used to be under 60% margins.

    Low volume = high margin. The catch-22 is that the volume will be low when the margins are high.

    They'd have to make it mass-market again - the tower models used to be mass-market. But, they don't want the mass-market to have towers because they can't bundle a display. The Mini is an exception due to its tiny form factor and low price. A large, heavy, expensive box without a display should only be for buyers who want to make that compromise and that is not the majority.
    elliots11 wrote:
    Mac pro and pro users push computing forward. It helps Apple's image.

    Mac Pro fans like to believe this but it's so far from the truth. Most of Apple's customers won't even know what a Mac Pro is because they position them in the Apple Stores so thet you walk past every other model before you get to the 1 Mac Pro right at the back corner.

    Over the years, I'm sure problems that were found in high-resource or esoteric scenarios have contributed in a small way to the evolution of Apple's products but not to the extent that they are owed a form factor for life, especially given that finding problems with things rather than solutions (which is Apple's job) doesn't give much qualification for reward.

    The extent to which customers define Apple's product roadmap is financial. People have to actually buy the products instead of complaning about them. Mac Pro buyers do a lot of complaining and hold onto machines for 6 years proclaiming how great that situation is then get annoyed at the lack of an update for 2 years.

    Hands up all the whiners who are buyers. Even if Apple does update the Pro at WWDC, how many people here are actually going to put down over $3,500 on one? That group of people is minute and not influential to Apple.

    What's the worst case scenario, 50K go for an iMac, 50K switch to a PC and the other 200 million customers just keep on truckin'. Oh right, the influential Mac Pro owners will drive Apple's entire customer base to the competition just to show them who's in charge. (if the image links worked properly, the rolleyes emoticon would go here)
  • Reply 142 of 211


    I think what people fail to realize is that the PRO market as a whole is no longer feasible to support. Nor do I think the amount of people needing those tools are going to increase. A buddy of mine used to run an expensive sound recording studio, which closed once the average person could make a mix tape. The Creative Professionals most impacted by this are the independent ones that did wedding videos or professional photography. Companies that do movies like Avatar will just buy Oracle Server Farms, or EMC/etc. But they will also shrink since people will find Youtube videos more entertaining then hollywood, and since it's much cheaper to crowd source content and make money off ads then spending billions on a blockbuster.


     


    In twenty years, video professional studios that still exist will not use Apple, they will have very custom built shops setup by consultants. And everyone else will be happy to upload their forested moon onto youtube.

  • Reply 143 of 211
    ssquirrelssquirrel Posts: 1,196member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Misa View Post


    That is fundamentally misunderstanding the problem.


     


    1. Mac Pro's have PCIe kit that can't be put into a iMac. TB is only 4 lanes. Devices like http://www.blackmagic-design.com/products/decklinkhdextreme use 4 lanes by themselves.


    2. Video cards are always 16 lane devices, these can't be put on TB. Any external Video card is going to have a 75% performance penalty if it's on TB and have to compete with the other TB devices for bandwidth.


    3. SSD devices require 4 lanes: http://www.fusionio.com/platforms/iodrive2/ if not 16 http://www.fusionio.com/platforms/iodrive-octal/



     


    Speaking of fundamental misunderstanding, please stop speaking.  1 lane of pcie 2.0 (500MB or 4Gb) is not the same as one lane of Thunderbolt (10Gb or 1.25Gb).  Also external videocards would not be at a 75% penalty.  Try 10-20% as shown here: http://www.anandtech.com/show/5458/the-radeon-hd-7970-reprise-pcie-bandwidth-overclocking-and-msaa  ; Again w/SSD, the IODrive2 would be perfectly fine on TB as that maxes at 12Gb, when TB has 20 to use each way.  The Octal would saturate it yes.  The Decklink you linked above uses a 10Gb/second bandwidth as its absolute fastest, which is half of TB.  http://www.blackmagic-design.com/products/decklinkhdextreme/techspecs/ ; It mentions its card runs on PCIe 4x, but they must mean PCIe 2.0 4x, b/c a 1.0 4x would only provide 8Gb of bandwidth.


     


    Please actually know what you are talking about before you put yourself forth as an expert.  You just end up looking bad.  Plus optical cabling was just introduced for Thunderbolt in April http://www.macworld.com/article/1166542/optical_cables_for_thunderbolt_ports_shipped_by_sumitomo.html ; We have yet to be provided with numbers on the new cabling speeds, but the existing ports are completely compatible  The speed increase comes from the cable itself.  TB is expected to reach speeds of 100Gb/second or 12.5GB/second by the end of the decade.

  • Reply 144 of 211
    slang4artslang4art Posts: 376member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by a_greer View Post


    You know your needs far better than I, but it seems to me that you are using the wrong tool for the job, you would be better served with a small cluster of servers with a NAS on a segragated private LAN.


     


    It sounds like you need real serious gear, and should invest in a nice rack of server equipment to build a BSD or Darwin cluster. You could use things like 10 gig e, higher end GPU options, better CPUs, 64GB or more of ram per box, not just per cluster, 10 gb ethernet, failover power supplies and so on. AMacpro cluster sounds like a sort of cobbled together solution to begin with.


     


    With that as a backend you could probably do fine with iMacs as the front end for the researchers.



    Thank you for adding this.

  • Reply 145 of 211
    slang4artslang4art Posts: 376member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SSquirrel View Post


     


    Speaking of fundamental misunderstanding, please stop speaking.  1 lane of pcie 2.0 (500MB or 4Gb) is not the same as one lane of Thunderbolt (10Gb or 1.25Gb).  Also external videocards would not be at a 75% penalty.  Try 10-20% as shown here: http://www.anandtech.com/show/5458/the-radeon-hd-7970-reprise-pcie-bandwidth-overclocking-and-msaa  ; Again w/SSD, the IODrive2 would be perfectly fine on TB as that maxes at 12Gb, when TB has 20 to use each way.  The Octal would saturate it yes.  The Decklink you linked above uses a 10Gb/second bandwidth as its absolute fastest, which is half of TB.  http://www.blackmagic-design.com/products/decklinkhdextreme/techspecs/ ; It mentions its card runs on PCIe 4x, but they must mean PCIe 2.0 4x, b/c a 1.0 4x would only provide 8Gb of bandwidth.


     


    Please actually know what you are talking about before you put yourself forth as an expert.  You just end up looking bad.  Plus optical cabling was just introduced for Thunderbolt in April http://www.macworld.com/article/1166542/optical_cables_for_thunderbolt_ports_shipped_by_sumitomo.html ; We have yet to be provided with numbers on the new cabling speeds, but the existing ports are completely compatible  The speed increase comes from the cable itself.  TB is expected to reach speeds of 100Gb/second or 12.5GB/second by the end of the decade.



    Thank you for explaining this.

  • Reply 146 of 211
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Marvin wrote: »
    This is a conclusion arrived at often but it's not the Xeons that keep the prices high on the entry models. The entry Xeon chip is $294:
    http://ark.intel.com/products/41313/Intel-Xeon-Processor-W3530-(8M-Cache-2_80-GHz-4_80-GTs-Intel-QPI)
    The Core i7-3960X is $1000:
    http://ark.intel.com/products/63696/Intel-Core-i7-3960X-Processor-Extreme-Edition-(15M-Cache-3_30-GHz)
    Apple would sell this 6-core i7 for at least $3200.
    When products sell in such low volume, the margins jump high. They went up at least $300 since the Mac Pro was introduced.
    $2499 - $294 CPU - $260 LGA 1366 motherboard - $115 Radeon 5770 GPU - $150 1KW PSU - $200 enclosure - 3GB RAM $50 - 1TB HDD $100 - Superdrive $100 - Magic Mouse/Keyboard $118
    That's still $1112 in the clear i.e 80% profit margins.
    If you take the component cost + 25% profit, you get $1387 x 1.25 = $1734
    Similar spec machines cost around this:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883108492
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16883147724

    Those are not similar machines. The Mac Pro is dual processor capable - which adds immensely to the cost. The Mac Pro also has ECC RAM and extremely high quality components.

    You're comparing a consumer-grade machine to a true professional machine.
  • Reply 147 of 211
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post





    Those are not similar machines. The Mac Pro is dual processor capable - which adds immensely to the cost. The Mac Pro also has ECC RAM and extremely high quality components.

    You're comparing a consumer-grade machine to a true professional machine.


     


     The models linked were workstations with ECC ram. Keep in mind that ECC ram isn't immensely expensive as it was a decade ago. It adds very little to the cost, especially with a standard configuration of 3x1GB. It does require a slightly more complex logic board, and Apple uses a thick aluminum case that probably costs something to build. Here's your next mistake. The single package mac pro is not dual processor capable. On the quad and hex core models, they use the W series parts and a different daughter board. The dual processor capable models are the 8 and 12 core models. They made that split on board designs and cpu parts in 2009. Prior to that a dual processor mac pro started at $2300 for 1,1 and $2800 for 3,1. 


     


    Last thing is that these aren't bad designs. They're entry level workstations much like the mac pro. You can't load the mac pro up with tesla cards or any really exotic parts given power limitations even with an extra power connector. You should also take note that those are priced to include 3 year warranties, which is pretty much the norm for any other workstation on the market. The warranty service tends to be pretty good on workstations too. Anyway there are many reasons I started with Macs. I've kept going with them due to overall familiarity. I have things the way I like them, but the single package mac pro could be a much better machine than it is today in terms of driver performance and features, and entry level hardware given the starting price. Since you mentioned true professional machines, those ones come with workstation gpus standard. This doesn't benefit everyone, but there are some very useful features at a driver level that aren't available in the gaming cards even though it's primarily a driver thing. 


     


    This isn't picking on Apple at all. I think you're just biased on this one, and you may not have been aware of those changes in the mac pro line (if I recall from other posts you use a 17" Core 2 duo macbook pro, which is also a very nice machine).


     


     


     




    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post





    This is a conclusion arrived at often but it's not the Xeons that keep the prices high on the entry models. The entry Xeon chip is $294:

    http://ark.intel.com/products/41313/Intel-Xeon-Processor-W3530-(8M-Cache-2_80-GHz-4_80-GTs-Intel-QPI)

    The Core i7-3960X is $1000:

    http://ark.intel.com/products/63696/Intel-Core-i7-3960X-Processor-Extreme-Edition-(15M-Cache-3_30-GHz)

    Apple would sell this 6-core i7 for at least $3200.

    When products sell in such low volume, the margins jump high. They went up at least $300 since the Mac Pro was introduced.

    $2499 - $294 CPU - $260 LGA 1366 motherboard - $115 Radeon 5770 GPU - $150 1KW PSU - $200 enclosure - 3GB RAM $50 - 1TB HDD $100 - Superdrive $100 - Magic Mouse/Keyboard $118

    That's still $1112 in the clear i.e 80% profit margins.

    If you take the component cost + 25% profit, you get $1387 x 1.25 = $1734

     



    Some of those numbers were a little different at the time they were released. I recall the 5770 cost more than that in 2010, even for a Windows version. Mac graphics cards have always been expensive given the need for custom drivers + smaller market. It's a slightly awkward setup overall. I agree that a 6 core at $2500 would be great. The entry 6 core cpu this generation started much lower, but I think it's more likely that Apple will stick to a quad in the base model. Personally I don't think it's worth it at the low end of that line. You should really be pushing 6 core and up to make the best use of it. Unfortunately OSX doesn't always scale well. The 5870 is a gpu, but it's a good example. Its performance is truly underwhelming relative to what it could be in OSX. Apple's OpenGL support has also been a bit bleh since Snow Leopard. At this point I'm really interested in how Mountain Lion will look in both OpenGL and OpenCL performance and support (as in developers can implement features without rewriting excessive amounts of code so that new features actually make it into software). Overall my needs haven't been growing that quickly lately, so it won't matter too much what I buy next as long as I have enough ports and options for storage connectivity. I won't touch the thunderbolt enclosure as I already own storage boxes, and I buy drives in batches, so if one dies, I replace it with another of the same brand/firmware even though I don't have them in a RAID.  They're always WD caviar black drives simply because they spin up quickly, they don't hang, and their support is good. Also speaking of RAID, I wish people would ask their questions before they buy something. I'm really tired of telling others that a RAID is not a backup, and that they shouldn't buy off brand drives.

  • Reply 148 of 211

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Marvin View Post


    The extent to which customers define Apple's product roadmap is financial. People have to actually buy the products instead of complaning about them. Mac Pro buyers do a lot of complaining and hold onto machines for 6 years proclaiming how great that situation is then get annoyed at the lack of an update for 2 years. Hands up all the whiners who are buyers. Even if Apple does update the Pro at WWDC, how many people here are actually going to put down over $3,500 on one? That group of people is minute and not influential to Apple.


     


    The idea that the entertainment and advertising industries are some kind of minor niche market in decline that can and should be ignored is just laughable on its face. Not to mention potential growth areas for OS X like the hard sciences and medicine -- here the success of iOS devices is likely to drive growth back into the rest of the OS X ecosystem, including a new and improved Mac Pro. An Apple television would only add to the phenomenon.


     


    Your vision of an iMac solution for half of the current Mac Pro base reminds me of a tag used in a sports blog that I read, "i come up with an incredibly complicated solution to something that may not be a problem" -- there isn't a problem here -- the current solution, the Mac Pro, is elegant, flexible, and works beautifully. I have a display on my desk and a box under it. How does an iMac with a different box under my desk improve upon that?


     


    Oh, and your comment about how few of the "whiners" are actually going to buy ignores the fact that a fair segment of the existing Mac Pro base (stock 1,1 and 2,1 machines, like mine) is going to be left behind by Mountain Lion -- I think that is partly what is driving the persistent interest in this topic. A lot of people who have had their Mac Pros for five and six years will be making the move. Some will probably go to iMac or the MacBook Pro + Thunderbolt Display, but many will move to the new and improved Mac Pro.

  • Reply 149 of 211
    ssquirrelssquirrel Posts: 1,196member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    Instead of an avenue, If you look at Mac OS X as a super smooth perfectly engineered Autobahn but on which you are only allowed to drive hybrid electric economy cars, it is very disappointing to those who have grown accustomed and prefer to drive v12 sports cars. To no longer be able to use a Mac Pro, choose your own monitor, video cards, pack it full of RAM and hard drives with 12 cores of cpus, is just an insult to Mac purists.



     


    Thank you for completely taking the use of the word avenue in the wrong direction.  My point was that Thunderbolt has enough bandwidth to be able to let you have multiple external solutions.  Want dual Pegasus 6 drive externals and a couple of monitors?  You have 2 TB slots and that will be enough bandwidth.  There's no way you could have shoved 12 drives into a Mac Pro.  I have a Mercury Elite AL Pro Qx2 and it lets me have 4 drives together and I can use FW800 or eSata.  I have it setup w/FW800 for now, but once a TB to eSATA adapter is released, I'll probably switch it to that. 


     


    Really tho, I do think the Mac Pro will be discontinued, but it will be in the same way the PowerMac was killed and replaced by the Mac Pro.  I think Apple will release a new machine that has top end parts and internal expansion, but not as much as currently.  They will have somewhere between 2 and 4 TB ports tho and we'll see what happens with price.  The problem with the idea of using a top end non-Xeon for the single processor is that means having different mobo designs between the Mac Pros and it's price point would be in the same range as the iMac.  Apple tries to have more price separation for their products usually.

  • Reply 150 of 211
    mitchelljdmitchelljd Posts: 167member


    I put an article on this onto my website.  We did 2 articles calling attention to the lack of updated Mac Pro's (or similar tier) in early March.


     


    Love to see what people think and sign the petition.


     


    http://www.peaceloveapplepie.com/mac-pro-petition/

  • Reply 151 of 211
    hmmhmm Posts: 3,405member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SSquirrel View Post


     


     


    Really tho, I do think the Mac Pro will be discontinued, but it will be in the same way the PowerMac was killed and replaced by the Mac Pro.  I think Apple will release a new machine that has top end parts and internal expansion, but not as much as currently.  They will have somewhere between 2 and 4 TB ports tho and we'll see what happens with price.  The problem with the idea of using a top end non-Xeon for the single processor is that means having different mobo designs between the Mac Pros and it's price point would be in the same range as the iMac.  Apple tries to have more price separation for their products usually.



    They already use two mobo designs to keep costs down on the model with a single cpu package. The cpu is is actually slightly cheaper in the mac pro than the imac, so they're okay with artificially inflating hardware no matter what. I doubt you'd see 4 TB ports. I don't know that the chipset even supports two TB chips. You'd reserve a x16 slot for the graphics card. At that point you're left with 24 lanes. TB could probably be  run over 2 on PCIe 3.0, but it might be configured as 4 lanes anyway. No speed increases were scheduled prior to 2015. Even then it's supposed to only be a moderate bump. Anyway Apple did this to themselves, and making it into the equivalent of a $1000 PC running OSX just to get the price down to $2300 isn't really a good solution. Workstations are always higher margin machines. It's just that at this point the low end of it is cut down to the point where the cost of entry doesn't appeal to as many people unless they require specific features. It's a model you'd buy today for features rather than power.

  • Reply 152 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by palegolas View Post



    The Mac Pro is for companies doing film post production, animation, hi def audio production, hi end 3D etc. it's for the top part of the professional line. I'm currently on my way to working with more and more professional animation, and I'm getting ready to purchase a new computer that can handle as much as possible.

    And as they're saying: the iMac is not the answer. Uncompromised power is.


     


    And even then it isn't required. Many high end companies like post production and animation use render farms for their processing. Farms that more often than not run on Linux based software. Which means you can have even an iMac for your workstation. and in many cases that's what the companies do. 

  • Reply 153 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Goldenclaw View Post


    It's clear Apple needs an entry-level tower. 



     


    It's clear no they don't NEED such a thing but that you wish they had it. Not the same thing. Most people don't care about making custom boxes, even most companies don't. So they are happy with the iMac, the Mac Mini etc. 

  • Reply 154 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Hakime View Post


    "With Apple's Mac Pro line growing long in the tooth after not having received an update for almost two years"


     


    This is basically the same amount of time that we have not seen any update from HP and Dell for their workstations.


     



     


    But they aren't Apple so who cares


     


     


    "The Cupertino, Calif., company upset a number of professional video editors last year with the release of Final Cut Pro X. Power users complained that the new release more closely resembled iMovie, Apple's entry-level video editing software, than previous versions of Final Cut Pro. AppleInsider exclusively reported in May 2010 that Apple was planning to make Final Cut more of a "prosumer" product, but the company promised at the time that its pro customers would "love" it."


     


     


    I am sorry but your report was basically wrong. 



     


    I won't go so far as to say they are wrong but it is questionably sourced. The comment is based on an old article that was sourced via less than 300 reviews on the app store and perhaps 20 blog reviews. Who knows how many people were fine with that early release but never said anything .


     


  • Reply 155 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Shaun, UK View Post


    become very aloof and alienate their core user base 



     


    Trouble for you and yours is that Pro users aren't Apple's core user base. Hell prosumers aren't really either. it's straight up CONSUMERS, that is who Apple designs for, that is whose needs control their decisions. The Pro users are just butt hurt that they aren't that core base anymore. Which is why they are whining about how they are going to say FU to Apple and go back to Windows, make Hackintoshes etc. But given that they aren't Apple's core user base all their whining, threats and demands for information that Apple has never given out before isn't going to make a difference to Apple. 


     


    Sorry if that hurts your feelings but it's the reality of the situation

  • Reply 156 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by MacMichiel View Post





    Windows ? Over my dead body ! Never ever will that happen.

    I don't agree with you at all. If there won't be an update Apple should end this rediculous endless wait and pull the Mac Pro from the Apple Store.


     


    why. the current Mac Pro is a perfectly fine machine for many people. Why should Apple deny those folks just because you think the specs suck. 

  • Reply 157 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


     


    Not to pick on you particularly, but a lot of people are making statements like this, and further that Apple is "all about the money," or that it doesn't make money for them etc. 


     


    First, Apple is definitely not "all about the money" they are one of the very few businesses that has realised that focussing only on profit is actually the wrong thing to do.  Apple is "all about the product."


     



     


    Don't delude yourself. Apple is about profit as much as every other company. They do it by making very beautiful products but in the end they are about making money. That they probably have reems of paperwork from many of those same companies buying Mac Minis, iMacs etc would back up the notion that no they don't need to continue the MacPro to serve that small part of their buyers. Instead they can continue to focus on their core user base of consumers and secondary base of prosumers keeping their software etc open to the use of add ons, plug ins etc for those that feel they need a bit more kick. 

  • Reply 158 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by not1lost View Post


    10 hours ago 4000 Now.....


    We want a mac pro 5-25-12 9.16 AM.JPG


    Notice it also says 2,593 talking about this~ The buzz is certainly buzzing!


     


    That's a gain of 330.8 an hour or 5.5 a minuet approx.


     


    This could go viral! I hope it does....



     


    doesn't matter. Apple doesn't design or release because of peoples demands anymore than they do by what the competition is doing. 

  • Reply 159 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post


     


    Tens of thousands directly, hundreds of thousands to millions indirectly.



     


    You have names to back that up. Names of millions of people that MUST have a Mac Pro to do their work, especially the kind of multitasking scenario given


     


    I bet you don't. Anymore than AI has the names and opinions of every single person that downloaded FCPX to say that the software is a failure and hated by everyone, etc. 


     


    Compared to, as I mentioned, Apple who has actual orders, sales and returns. 

  • Reply 160 of 211
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Joe The Dragon View Post




    but HP and others did lower prices and bumped up video cards / ram size over the same time frame.


     


    Apple same price same ram and same video cards for same 2 years.



     


    You can use non Apple supplied video cards in that Pro. Same with RAM and hard drives. So that's a bit moot. 


     


    Hell if you are really gutsy you could probably upgrade the logic board even

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