Good time to purchase Mac Pros?

Posted:
in Future Apple Hardware edited January 2014
I work for a business that's just coming to the end of a hire agreement so we're in the market to upgrade a dozen or so workstations.



We're in a position where we could wait for a few months, if prudent, so my question is what part of the cycle are we currently in with regard to Mac Pros? Is now a good time to purchase? What's in Intel's pipeline and how soon do you think Blu-ray burners will be added?
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 30
    onlookeronlooker Posts: 5,252member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Somynona View Post


    I work for a business that's just coming to the end of a hire agreement so we're in the market to upgrade a dozen or so workstations.



    We're in a position where we could wait for a few months, if prudent, so my question is what part of the cycle are we currently in with regard to Mac Pros? Is now a good time to purchase? What's in Intel's pipeline and how soon do you think Blu-ray burners will be added?



    The Mac Pro was just updated. Time to buy is now!
  • Reply 2 of 30
    synpsynp Posts: 248member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Somynona View Post


    I work for a business that's just coming to the end of a hire agreement so we're in the market to upgrade a dozen or so workstations.



    We're in a position where we could wait for a few months, if prudent, so my question is what part of the cycle are we currently in with regard to Mac Pros? Is now a good time to purchase? What's in Intel's pipeline and how soon do you think Blu-ray burners will be added?



    Blu-Ray burners may be added as options at any time, but you can also buy and install them later on. This is a Mac Pro after all, not a fiddly Mini.
  • Reply 3 of 30
    Thanks guys.
  • Reply 4 of 30
    yes, the Mac pro's were updated not to long ago so it will probably be a while before they are updated again
  • Reply 5 of 30
    sunilsunil Posts: 4member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Somynona View Post


    I work for a business that's just coming to the end of a hire agreement so we're in the market to upgrade a dozen or so workstations.



    We're in a position where we could wait for a few months, if prudent, so my question is what part of the cycle are we currently in with regard to Mac Pros? Is now a good time to purchase? What's in Intel's pipeline and how soon do you think Blu-ray burners will be added?



    My advice is if you can wait without hurting your business, that's the best move. The best time to buy any Apple product is after a major announcement (Apple Event) since that's when the major upgrades and new innovations are added and on the plus, there is a Apple Event on June 9th . Minor upgrades don't offer much except a minor boost in performance and no new innovations.



    Knowing Apple tends to always offer the latest and greatest technology, there is a high chance Blu-Ray will be added considering news reports latest stating Microsoft and Apple are in talks with Sony.



    If you choose to wait, here's another factor to consider, when a Mac Product is updated, the last generation gets a major price drop. So you have a choice of the latest or near-comparable products for significantly less.
  • Reply 6 of 30
    frankiefrankie Posts: 380member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sunil View Post


    My advice is if you can wait without hurting your business, that's the best move. The best time to buy any Apple product is after a major announcement (Apple Event) since that's when the major upgrades and new innovations are added and on the plus, there is a Apple Event on June 9th . Minor upgrades don't offer much except a minor boost in performance and no new innovations.



    Knowing Apple tends to always offer the latest and greatest technology, there is a high chance Blu-Ray will be added considering news reports latest stating Microsoft and Apple are in talks with Sony.



    If you choose to wait, here's another factor to consider, when a Mac Product is updated, the last generation gets a major price drop. So you have a choice of the latest or near-comparable products for significantly less.



    I pretty much disagree with this person. Nothing personal.



    The Mac Pros have been getting upgrade once or 2x a year for the last couple years and they pretty much were just upgraded.



    Usually when the new computers come out, the old ones are only cheaper at resellers. Apple just replaces the older models with the new ones. They don't keep selling them, for cheaper. If this were true they would still be selling G3 computers for a few hundred bucks-which I actually think is a good idea (but they will never do it) as my dad would shut up and actually buy a Mac that is year old technology and quit complaining that Mac's are so expensive!



    This is how Dell sells $200 laptops. Who cares if it's $200 if the technology is 5 years old!



    Also, why do you want to buy a Mac Pro with a blu-ray burner in it at a premium price. Blu-Ray discs are still like $20 each and the drives are still too slow and too expensive. Buy your Mac Pro now, use it, get your business going, and then a couple years down the road you can ADD a blu-ray burner to it for way less money and it will actually burn at more than 2X!



    My thoughts...
  • Reply 7 of 30
    what exactly is the appeal of waiting for a blu-ray burner? the media is very expensive and the drives are very expensive. if you're looking for a back-up solution an external hard drive is much cheaper and easier to deal with.
  • Reply 8 of 30
    drboardrboar Posts: 477member
    Current MP use quite expensive fully buffered RAM. The next generation of Intel CPUs will use standard DDR3 and have an integrated memory controller that will boost performance quite a lot. This is the largest change in CPU design Intel have made in several years.



    They are supposed to come out late this year. I am holding out for those



    Since the Intel switch the number of cores has increased and frequency as well. This will be a larger step
  • Reply 9 of 30
    kareliakarelia Posts: 525member
    The use of FB-DIMMS is not a choice by Apple that they can simply revert, I believe it is a requirement of the Xeon. It's not unreasonable for a server-based CPU to require server-based RAM, after all.
  • Reply 10 of 30
    drboardrboar Posts: 477member
    The FB DIMMs are requirement of Xeon, or if as I recall the Northbridge that is needed to support more than one Quadcore CPU. The FB comes at two costs, one is money the other is higher latency than regular DIMMs. The G5 CPU had a similar thing with high latency but high throughput for streaming.



    A computer can never be to fast
  • Reply 11 of 30
    The severs will still use ECC ram so you may see it with DDR3 ECC.



    also there maybe a WWDC 2008 cpu and video bump
  • Reply 12 of 30
    kareliakarelia Posts: 525member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DrBoar View Post


    The FB DIMMs are requirement of Xeon, or if as I recall the Northbridge that is needed to support more than one Quadcore CPU.



    Well, even the dual dual-core Woodcrest Mac Pros needed FB-DIMMS. Only the PowerMac and Xserve G5s had the choice of ECC or non-ECC. The Mac Pros need it, the Intel Cores and other PowerPC machines can't take it.
  • Reply 13 of 30
    onlookeronlooker Posts: 5,252member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by frankie View Post


    I pretty much disagree with this person. Nothing personal.



    The Mac Pros have been getting upgrade once or 2x a year for the last couple years and they pretty much were just upgraded.



    Usually when the new computers come out, the old ones are only cheaper at resellers. Apple just replaces the older models with the new ones. They don't keep selling them, for cheaper. If this were true they would still be selling G3 computers for a few hundred bucks-which I actually think is a good idea (but they will never do it) as my dad would shut up and actually buy a Mac that is year old technology and quit complaining that Mac's are so expensive!



    This is how Dell sells $200 laptops. Who cares if it's $200 if the technology is 5 years old!



    Also, why do you want to buy a Mac Pro with a blu-ray burner in it at a premium price. Blu-Ray discs are still like $20 each and the drives are still too slow and too expensive. Buy your Mac Pro now, use it, get your business going, and then a couple years down the road you can ADD a blu-ray burner to it for way less money and it will actually burn at more than 2X!



    My thoughts...



    I have to agree with most of this. I would not wait. The Mac Pro Was just updated, and it was a major refresh not an incremental update. = CPU Bump. Apple has only been refreshing this product periodically over the past few years, and the most you should reasonably expect in the next update is going to be a minimal CPU upgrade. That's being cautious, and responsible because you really can't expect wonders from Apple because they don't seem to happen anymore unless it's an entirely new product that you've never seen before. I think the BIg Mac Pro update will probably happen at MWSF, or WWDC next year with an all new design, and some serious feature improvements. You should buy one now.
  • Reply 14 of 30
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,839member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by onlooker View Post


    I have to agree with most of this. I would not wait. The Mac Pro Was just updated, and it was a major refresh not an incremental update. = CPU Bump. Apple has only been refreshing this product periodically over the past few years, and the most you should reasonably expect in the next update is going to be a minimal CPU upgrade. That's being cautious, and responsible because you really can't expect wonders from Apple because they don't seem to happen anymore unless it's an entirely new product that you've never seen before. I think the BIg Mac Pro update will probably happen at MWSF, or WWDC next year with an all new design, and some serious feature improvements. You should buy one now.



    I'm not saying he should wait either, but the next update may be more significant that a CPU bump.



    They will add Blu-Ray and Firewire 3200 sometime this year, and the new displays (and Blu-Ray) will likely demand the all-new DisplayPort interface. That would seem to be a really significant upgrade.



    Although as I have said in the past, Blu-Ray and Firewire can be added later, so buy now if you need it now.
  • Reply 15 of 30
    onlookeronlooker Posts: 5,252member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


    I'm not saying he should wait either, but the next update may be more significant that a CPU bump.



    They will add Blu-Ray and Firewire 3200 sometime this year, and the new displays (and Blu-Ray) will likely demand the all-new DisplayPort interface. That would seem to be a really significant upgrade.



    Although as I have said in the past, Blu-Ray and Firewire can be added later, so buy now if you need it now.



    I'm sorry but you don't know that. What one thinks Apple will do, and what happens are two different things entirely. None of those things are absolutely necessary, and like you said. They can all be added later.
  • Reply 16 of 30
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,839member
    I have no idea about Apple's consumer plans, but Blu-Ray on the Mac Pro is a given, unless Apple wants to surrender the professional wedding video market to Windows.



    And since Apple has been careful to have an in-house employee appointed as chairman of the Firewire trade group, one can be fairly certain they have internal plans for the technology.
  • Reply 17 of 30
    royboyroyboy Posts: 452member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post


    I have no idea about Apple's consumer plans, but Blu-Ray on the Mac Pro is a given, unless Apple wants to surrender the professional wedding video market to Windows.



    And since Apple has been careful to have an in-house employee appointed as chairman of the Firewire trade group, one can be fairly certain they have internal plans for the technology.



    Apple (Mac) sometimes leads and sometimes follows.
  • Reply 18 of 30
    frank777frank777 Posts: 5,839member
    Yes, but if they decline to lead with Firewire, the technology will be dead.
  • Reply 19 of 30
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Somynona View Post


    I work for a business that's just coming to the end of a hire agreement so we're in the market to upgrade a dozen or so workstations.



    Sounds nice! The obvious question becomes do you need them all at once?

    Quote:



    We're in a position where we could wait for a few months, if prudent, so my question is what part of the cycle are we currently in with regard to Mac Pros?



    The better question is to ask where Intel is with their product releases.



    If you take a look at what Intel has coming you should see that there are great strides to be made later this year and possibly into next.

    Quote:

    Is now a good time to purchase? What's in Intel's pipeline and how soon do you think Blu-ray burners will be added?



    If it is a business purchase the time to buy is when the business needs the hardware. Now obviously not all businesses follow that course of action, many have solid upgrade plans to keep their systems current. As to Blu-Ray I don't even see that coming into the question. First; the technology used in the drives is improving a a rapid pace, so what ever ends up in a new Mac Pro wil be quickly outdated. Second; auxiliary drives are easy to implement.



    In any event look at what the business needs and over what time period. It may make good business sense, especially right now, to stagger the new machine purchases over a finite length of time. Say maybe two machines every other month or what ever fits into the demands that you have. It may make sense to organize your computer purchase so that ever node gets replaced every two years or so. Just don't do it all at once.



    Dave
  • Reply 20 of 30
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,325member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by onlooker View Post


    I'm sorry but you don't know that. What one thinks Apple will do, and what happens are two different things entirely. None of those things are absolutely necessary, and like you said. They can all be added later.



    While we can assume that they will LIKELY add BD this year, they will very definitely NOT have FW 3200, as the physical layer for it is still being thrashed out, and it won't be available until 2009 sometime.



    Apple often even isn't the first to offer the newest Firewire.



    As to those saying that BD is too expensive. Well, that's not true. compared to technologies Apple has offered before, it's downright cheap!



    When I bought my Pro Audio Mac with its two speed DVD burner, that very same burner was going for $1,000, about $1,300 in todays dollars. The single layer disks (the only kind!) were $20. There were no re writable disks at the time.



    Right now, you can get a 6 speed BD writer for about $500, and 4 speed models for less. Single layer 25 GB disks go for as little as $12, and dual layer 50 GB disks for $22.



    That's not bad for a technology that's still new.
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