As fans await update for 3-year-old Mac mini, Apple classifies mid-2011 models 'obsolete'

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  • Reply 61 of 78
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,752member
    welshdog said:
    This strategy would be very cost effective as it places resources where they are most needed and focusses development expenses where needed at a given point in time.
    ...
    There are really so many directions Apple could go with a new Mini, but which one makes the most sense for them?
    I suppose that's true, but at this point Apple needs to satisfy their Mac users (or at least should) more than they need to optimize their design team's development process. It isn't like they are hurting to stretch their R&D budget as far as possible.

    The better question would be which makes more sense for their user-base. But, you probably said that accurately... (i.e.: Apple marketing is going to be deciding what it is).
    edited December 2017 welshdog
  • Reply 62 of 78
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    Apple's problem with the mini is they no longer have a single machine that can be used as a cheap and reliable server, be it for a small business or a bigger setup. Even the latest releases of macOS Server points to abandonware. 

    It is time Apple advice their users what they recommend for running applications that a) don't need much graphics performance or requires the machine to be as thin and power lean as possible, and b) cannot be deployed to the cloud for multiple reasons; one being legal requirements. 

    It would be extremely interesting to have Mr. Cook stand up at their next WWDC talk about how the backends for their clients should be served. 
    Why would he need to tell the WWDC audience something they already know?  Backend services are served up using RESTful APIs running in the cloud or on commodity linux servers.  Apple doesn't play in that space.  
    Apple is slowly decimating the server product line both on the hardware and software side to the level of abandonware. Cook need to address this in public. One thing is that everyone "know", but they are at the same time sending very mixed messages where Swift, as an example, is being profiled as a server quality development language. 
    Yup, so other companies can build server-side applications with it. 

    http://perfect.org/

    http://www.kitura.io/



  • Reply 63 of 78
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    cgWerks said:
    nht said:
    Then get windows and suffer worse TCO penalty than the cost of the display of the iMac.
    Just don’t bitch here that you bought the wrong mac to save a penny over the Mac Pro or the iMac.  
    It's not about the cost. The iMac w/display is actually a great deal if you want a single-use unit on your desk.
    The problem comes in when you want more inputs to your main display. The iMac isn't a great solution for that.

    And... the Mac Pro is more than a few pennies in cost over a Mini (and way out of date). There is a huge, gaping hole in Apple's product line between the Mini and Mac Pro.

    Why is it so hard to understand the need for a prosumer/pro headless system? If Apple built one, there would be a relatively big market. It wouldn't have to be bargain basement either. Just a nice design that is quiet with iMac type hardware in it (i.e.: quad-core, semi-reasonable GPU, etc.). What's the resistance to building such a system?

    The mini, at least back in the quad-core days, was sort of that system (though a bit underpowered in terms of GPU). If they'd even refresh it with TB3, at least it would be usable as I described above, though maybe not ideal (due to noise).

    Right, you start by saying it's not about the cost, then later on you complain that the Mac Pro is more than a few pennies over the cost of a Mac Mini.

    So it is about the cost. 

    You also go on to say that there is a need for a prosumer/pro headless system, and that it would be a relatively big market – but of course you don't know any of that for sure. The only people who know the size of the potential market work for Apple.
  • Reply 64 of 78
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    welshdog said:
    They told us they screwed up with Mac Pro and in a way admitted the same for all Macs (thus iMac Pro).  
    In what way did they say they screwed up for all Macs?
  • Reply 65 of 78
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,752member
    Rayz2016 said:
    Right, you start by saying it's not about the cost, then later on you complain that the Mac Pro is more than a few pennies over the cost of a Mac Mini.

    So it is about the cost. 

    You also go on to say that there is a need for a prosumer/pro headless system, and that it would be a relatively big market – but of course you don't know any of that for sure. The only people who know the size of the potential market work for Apple.
    It's about the cost relative to the the product, but that statement was actually in response to the display cost of the iMac. In other words, I don't NOT want an iMac because I'm paying for an extra display (like I said, it's a good deal)... I don't want an iMac because I don't want the display! I'll gladly take the display if Apple adds proper inputs and separates it from the computer components.

    In fact, if Apple made a headless Mac with iMac guts and charged the same price as the iMac, I'd probably grumble a bit as it doesn't seem fair, but I'd also buy one. And, if they gave it a slight GPU bump because the design better allowed it (but for the same price), or lowered the price just a bit (it wouldn't have to be the full amount of the screen), I'd be happy as a clam.

    I don't need Xeons, ECC RAM, or necessarily dual workstation GPUs. I need more power than a Mini and would like it to be quiet. (Or, more power than a MacBook/Pro, or even an iMac, as I don't trust the cooling of that design.) That means that I'll likely *have* to come up with the money for a Mac Pro when I really shouldn't have to. So, yea, in a round-about way it's about the money. But, it's not like I'm screaming because I want an under $1k machine when all Apple makes is a $1200 machine or something like that. But, that's quite a way from a $3k-4k machine (entry level, years old design)... or a $5k+ machine that is coming.

    This means Apple has pushed me into a position where my options seem to be:
    1. Build a hackintosh 
    2. Buy an old Mac Pro or even older Mac Pro and upgrade it for now
    3. Switch to Windows

    And, I've heard enough people talk about wanting such a thing to know it's a reasonable sized market. I don't know the exact numbers, but I'd bet it would be higher than either the Mini or Mac Pro.
    edited December 2017
  • Reply 66 of 78
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    cgWerks said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    Right, you start by saying it's not about the cost, then later on you complain that the Mac Pro is more than a few pennies over the cost of a Mac Mini.

    So it is about the cost. 

    You also go on to say that there is a need for a prosumer/pro headless system, and that it would be a relatively big market – but of course you don't know any of that for sure. The only people who know the size of the potential market work for Apple.
    It's about the cost relative to the the product, but that statement was actually in response to the display cost of the iMac. In other words, I don't NOT want an iMac because I'm paying for an extra display (like I said, it's a good deal)... I don't want an iMac because I don't want the display! I'll gladly take the display if Apple adds proper inputs and separates it from the computer components.

    In fact, if Apple made a headless Mac with iMac guts and charged the same price as the iMac, I'd probably grumble a bit as it doesn't seem fair, but I'd also buy one. And, if they gave it a slight GPU bump because the design better allowed it (but for the same price), or lowered the price just a bit (it wouldn't have to be the full amount of the screen), I'd be happy as a clam.

    I don't need Xeons, ECC RAM, or necessarily dual workstation GPUs. I need more power than a Mini and would like it to be quiet. (Or, more power than a MacBook/Pro, or even an iMac, as I don't trust the cooling of that design.) That means that I'll likely *have* to come up with the money for a Mac Pro when I really shouldn't have to. So, yea, in a round-about way it's about the money. But, it's not like I'm screaming because I want an under $1k machine when all Apple makes is a $1200 machine or something like that. But, that's quite a way from a $3k-4k machine (entry level, years old design)... or a $5k+ machine that is coming.

    This means Apple has pushed me into a position where my options seem to be:
    1. Build a hackintosh 
    2. Buy an old Mac Pro or even older Mac Pro and upgrade it for now
    3. Switch to Windows

    And, I've heard enough people talk about wanting such a thing to know it's a reasonable sized market. I don't know the exact numbers, but I'd bet it would be higher than either the Mini or Mac Pro.
    Ah, right. I see what you’re saying now. My apologies. 

    In which case you can buy a current Mac Pro (you can still buy them as far as I can tell) or wait for the new modular system Apple reckons will be out for next year. Problem solved. 

    Ah, no it’s not – because later on you’ve given a spec of what you’re looking for and the price you’re looking to pay for it. 

    So as I said, it’s about the money.

    And that’s fair enough (not sure why you were reluctant to admit it). But the point still stands: you don’t know the size of the market, or whether Apple can make enough money from it to make it worth while (bear in mind that in Apple’s mind, ‘worthwhile’ could mean millions in profit) You’re assuming that it is large enough because you’ve listened to the internet echo chamber bang in about it for years. That’s a lot of people talking, a lot of people echoing, and a lot of people who would find another excuse not to buy it, even if Apple did meet their price requirements. Apple prefers to deal with customers, not product speculators. 

    What’s wrong with the monitor on the iMac? Isn’t it big enough?
    edited December 2017
  • Reply 67 of 78
    nhtnht Posts: 4,522member
    Rayz2016 said:
    cgWerks said:
    Rayz2016 said:
    Right, you start by saying it's not about the cost, then later on you complain that the Mac Pro is more than a few pennies over the cost of a Mac Mini.

    So it is about the cost. 

    You also go on to say that there is a need for a prosumer/pro headless system, and that it would be a relatively big market – but of course you don't know any of that for sure. The only people who know the size of the potential market work for Apple.
    It's about the cost relative to the the product, but that statement was actually in response to the display cost of the iMac. In other words, I don't NOT want an iMac because I'm paying for an extra display (like I said, it's a good deal)... I don't want an iMac because I don't want the display! I'll gladly take the display if Apple adds proper inputs and separates it from the computer components.

    In fact, if Apple made a headless Mac with iMac guts and charged the same price as the iMac, I'd probably grumble a bit as it doesn't seem fair, but I'd also buy one. And, if they gave it a slight GPU bump because the design better allowed it (but for the same price), or lowered the price just a bit (it wouldn't have to be the full amount of the screen), I'd be happy as a clam.

    I don't need Xeons, ECC RAM, or necessarily dual workstation GPUs. I need more power than a Mini and would like it to be quiet. (Or, more power than a MacBook/Pro, or even an iMac, as I don't trust the cooling of that design.) That means that I'll likely *have* to come up with the money for a Mac Pro when I really shouldn't have to. So, yea, in a round-about way it's about the money. But, it's not like I'm screaming because I want an under $1k machine when all Apple makes is a $1200 machine or something like that. But, that's quite a way from a $3k-4k machine (entry level, years old design)... or a $5k+ machine that is coming.

    This means Apple has pushed me into a position where my options seem to be:
    1. Build a hackintosh 
    2. Buy an old Mac Pro or even older Mac Pro and upgrade it for now
    3. Switch to Windows

    And, I've heard enough people talk about wanting such a thing to know it's a reasonable sized market. I don't know the exact numbers, but I'd bet it would be higher than either the Mini or Mac Pro.
    Ah, right. I see what you’re saying now. My apologies. 

    In which case you can buy a current Mac Pro (you can still buy them as far as I can tell) or wait for the new modular system Apple reckons will be out for next year. Problem solved. 

    Ah, no it’s not – because later on you’ve given a spec of what you’re looking for and the price you’re looking to pay for it. 

    So as I said, it’s about the money.

    And that’s fair enough (not sure why you were reluctant to admit it). But the point still stands: you don’t know the size of the market, or whether Apple can make enough money from it to make it worth while (bear in mind that in Apple’s mind, ‘worthwhile’ could mean millions in profit) You’re assuming that it is large enough because you’ve listened to the internet echo chamber bang in about it for years. That’s a lot of people talking, a lot of people echoing, and a lot of people who would find another excuse not to buy it, even if Apple did meet their price requirements. Apple prefers to deal with customers, not product speculators. 

    What’s wrong with the monitor on the iMac? Isn’t it big enough?
    He wants HDMI input on the back of the iMac or perhaps target display mode would be good enough. 

    If you are just trying to get your MBP screen onto the 5K iMac display you can VNC over thunderbolt.

    http://www.ajaydivakaran.com/imac-retina-and-target-display-mode/

    Given 4K displays are relatively inexpensive today I simply run with a 2 monitor setup off my MBP.  If I had an iMac as my primary machine I’d have a second monitor anyway.
  • Reply 68 of 78
    I think the only logical explanation for the long overdue update to the Mac mini is that they are working toward making them with Apple A# CPUs. 
    At some point in the not too distant future they will do it. 

    A#: MacBook, Mac mini, iMac
    intel: MacBook Pro , Mac Pro, iMac Pro
  • Reply 69 of 78
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,752member
    Rayz2016 said:
    Ah, right. I see what you’re saying now. My apologies. 

    In which case you can buy a current Mac Pro (you can still buy them as far as I can tell) or wait for the new modular system Apple reckons will be out for next year. Problem solved. 

    Ah, no it’s not – because later on you’ve given a spec of what you’re looking for and the price you’re looking to pay for it. 

    So as I said, it’s about the money.

    And that’s fair enough (not sure why you were reluctant to admit it). But the point still stands: you don’t know the size of the market, or whether Apple can make enough money from it to make it worth while (bear in mind that in Apple’s mind, ‘worthwhile’ could mean millions in profit) You’re assuming that it is large enough because you’ve listened to the internet echo chamber bang in about it for years. That’s a lot of people talking, a lot of people echoing, and a lot of people who would find another excuse not to buy it, even if Apple did meet their price requirements. Apple prefers to deal with customers, not product speculators. 

    What’s wrong with the monitor on the iMac? Isn’t it big enough?

    Yes, right at the moment, buying a Mac Pro (or building a Hackintosh, upgrading an 'cheese grater') are my top options. I'm hesitant about the Mac Pro, as it's a good deal of money for possibly a short life-span. With the Hackintosh or upgraded 'cheese grater', while similar problems exist, there is less to lose, or it's easier to recover... like install Windows.

    And, yes, it's about the money within context. I'm not wealthy. But, I'm willing to pay for quality... so it's not about the money... as far as it goes. I'm not going to pay crazy money out of scale with value or anything like that, just because. The reason I was reluctant, is that the comment was made in the context of the additional cost of the iMac screen... not as an overall principal (i.e.: money no object).

    To state it again.... I think the screen in the iMac is a great deal. I'm not asking for a headless iMac because I don't want to pay for the screen. I'm not asking for a discount machine where it's a xMac w/o screen reduced by the cost of the screen component. In that regard, money isn't the issue. As I said, I'd even pay for an 'xMac' that cost the same as an iMac. (I owned an iMac not too long ago. They are great machines, as far as it goes.)

    Also, regarding market size and such, does it ultimately matter? For example, even if the Mac Pro was an overall money loser, I'd still argue it's a product they need to have in the lineup. The 'xMac' might be the ideal machine (if Apple cares about the Mac future) to pull more 'switchers' over. It's also an ideal machine for developers who aren't Marco Arment yet... i.e.: they are somewhat on a budget. The Mini was that machine at one point, until they ditched quad-core and haven't updated it.

    Business is (or should be) more complex than some simplistic bean-counter spreadsheets about market-percentage and profit margins. Steve Jobs recognized this, and Tim wouldn't have an iPhone or the massive company that Apple now is with simplistic bean-counter thinking. Do you remember the 90s Apple? Yea, that's what you get with bean-counter thinking.

    What's wrong with the monitor on the iMac is that there are no inputs. It's a single-use screen that takes up your desk. I work from home-office and will likely be moving into a ~700 sq-ft space in the near future. That means I'm going to want one display that is appropriate to my needs, with anything and everything else I need hooked to it. Also, the cooling isn't adequate in an iMac for pro use (it easily could be in a xMac).

    To boil it down, I'm asking Apple to create a product in-between entry-level and pro. While you can say I don't know the numbers, I have a hunch. It's not an insignificant market (in numbers, or importance).

    nht said:
    He wants HDMI input on the back of the iMac or perhaps target display mode would be good enough. 

    If you are just trying to get your MBP screen onto the 5K iMac display you can VNC over thunderbolt.

    http://www.ajaydivakaran.com/imac-retina-and-target-display-mode/

    Given 4K displays are relatively inexpensive today I simply run with a 2 monitor setup off my MBP.  If I had an iMac as my primary machine I’d have a second monitor anyway.
    Thanks, yes in general. *IF* the iMac were otherwise perfect for the prosumer, it needs some appropriate inputs.
    And, I'd rather not have 2 displays... see above. While I admit it's a somewhat unique use-case, I have no idea why Apple got rid of the inputs. Also, some people want particular displays (ex: some people want those ultra-wide curved displays).johnny mozzarella said:
    A#: MacBook, Mac mini, iMac
    intel: MacBook Pro , Mac Pro, iMac Pro
    I could be wrong, but I think the iMac Pro is going to end up being the current Cube or Twentieth Anniversary Mac. It's more of a 'look what we can do' collectors model than anything they should have built. Which, ultimately ticks me off even a bit more, as 1/10 of the time they spent on that thing could have refreshed the Mini and Mac Pro(s) to be what many of us actually want and need.
  • Reply 70 of 78
    cgWerks said:
    I could be wrong, but I think the iMac Pro is going to end up being the current Cube or Twentieth Anniversary Mac. It's more of a 'look what we can do' collectors model than anything they should have built. Which, ultimately ticks me off even a bit more, as 1/10 of the time they spent on that thing could have refreshed the Mini and Mac Pro(s) to be what many of us actually want and need.
    Like you, I could be wrong, but I think, unlike the Cube, the iMac Pro is more of a harbinger of the future than most people recognize right now. I think the Late 2013 Mac Pro and the Late 2014 Mac mini were wake-up calls for Apple's leadership, but not in the ways we might imagine.

    Instead, we are going to see more emphasis on "Pro" -- indeed, there is a good case to be made for a "Mac mini Pro" based on emerging tech (see my earlier post in this thread). If you think about it, the current "What's a computer?" (says kid with using iPad as computer) Apple ad also fits into this.

    Consider the Late 2014 Mac mini -- a half-hearted refresh. Apple seems to have decided to just do the minimum. I won't say that the plan was to discontinue it, but I do think the original plan was to downgrade it to something much like the HP Elite Slice.

    Then reality struck. It turns out that, while consumers like parents of the kid in the ad are shifting away from computers, that trend (let alone other technical developments like AR, VR, and 4K video) increases the demand for powerful "Pro" machines. Similarly, you can't do CAD on the HP Elite Slice. You need the HP Z2 Mini for that.

    Apple may be drifting away from the consumer iMac and MacBook, toward "What's a computer?" -- BUT that also entails moving toward "Pro" machines that can support the new world of iOS, tvOS, and other devices inside the Apple ecosystem. I'd argue that means increased emphasis on iMac Pro, MacBook Pro, Mac Pro, and, yes, Mac mini Pro.

    The iMac Pro is Apple's first decisive step in this direction, but there will be others. The same tech that points to a Mac mini Pro also can be used for a more powerful MacBook Pro, for example.

    The Late 2013 Mac Pro was a sort of early, tentative step in this direction, but not decisive enough, as the design was unable to adapt to the rapidly changing landscape as the era of the "personal computer" comes to an end.
    edited December 2017
  • Reply 71 of 78
    jcs2305jcs2305 Posts: 1,224member
    AI_lias said:
    If I was Apple, I'd take that Mac Pro trash can design and reuse it for the new Mac mini. 
    Depending what you do. Try serious publishing like we do or professional video editing and you will see huge diifference between Mac Mini and MacPro. We have both so no contest but we do this for living for large publishers (in fact the largers in the world for education so you could read some programming books that were edited by our studio). Now you have wrong idea beacuse actually MacPro should be made six-corre minimum and MacMini shouls stay being quad-core like mid-2011 and not dropped to mediocre dual-core with 2014 downgrade. In fact I consider 2014 already obsolete and underperforming on date of release.
    What are you talking about? The OP said they would like to see the new Mac Mini adopt the round ( trash can ) design of the current Mac Pro... period. I am confused by the rest of your post.
    edited December 2017
  • Reply 72 of 78
    jcs2305jcs2305 Posts: 1,224member
    Soli said:
    jimwilson said:
    It’s probably been said before: higher powered Mac Mini will be subcomponent of Mac Pro, parallel architecture ...
    That would be kind of cool (I've actually done that in the past in a way). But, I think cloud-computing would make it hard to compete or gain traction. That ship sailed a decade or so ago. I guess if you had to have it in-house for security reasons or something.
    The holdup is the big round building. I expect to see quicker refreshments of all models after a year they have occupied the saucer. 
    Is this more facetiousness that doesn't include notion of humour? If not, why do you think product designers and programmers are being pulled off their jobs because of "the big round building"? It would seem they still have the same office spaces before the project started over 6.5 years ago, so do you think that the same person engineering a computer circuit board is also an architect for a industrial building? I can assure you they do have contractors for that. I think that leaves Apple employees as simply being lazy so is suggesting poor management? Is there an implication that Cook should be fired? Appleinsider infamously kept writing articles about how the Mac mini finally had its final coffin nail for what seemed like several years, so what was the reason for the Mac mini languishing for so long under Jobs if there was no Apple Park project at the time? I guess that could be the iPhone or iPod, but at least those are CE so I can see how you may need those HW and SW engineers to work on those new projects, but for Apple Park I don't see how that's possible.
    I read, years ago, a research paper that whenever a business would build a humongous headquarter it would reflect negatively on the results. There was a direct relationship. I don’t understand why Apple is not continuing with regular updates the way it did years ago. Every year, maybe even faster, without much fuss, suddenly the whole range of iMacs or Mini’s or whatever would get faster memory, faster CPU’s etc. These last years are different in that respect and I have yet to read a good explanation. 


    Wasn't Steve Jobs involved heavily with the design of Apple Park going back to 2009? So do they negative results start once construction is complete, or during the conception and design phase? 

    https://www.cultofmac.com/481819/apple-park-steve-jobss-final-project/



  • Reply 73 of 78
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,752member
    tenthousandthings said:
    Like you, I could be wrong, but I think, unlike the Cube, the iMac Pro is more of a harbinger of the future than most people recognize right now. I think the Late 2013 Mac Pro and the Late 2014 Mac mini were wake-up calls for Apple's leadership, but not in the ways we might imagine.

    Instead, we are going to see more emphasis on "Pro" -- indeed, there is a good case to be made for a "Mac mini Pro" based on emerging tech (see my earlier post in this thread). If you think about it, the current "What's a computer?" (says kid with using iPad as computer) Apple ad also fits into this.

    Consider the Late 2014 Mac mini -- a half-hearted refresh. Apple seems to have decided to just do the minimum. I won't say that the plan was to discontinue it, but I do think the original plan was to downgrade it to something much like the HP Elite Slice.

    Then reality struck. It turns out that, while consumers like parents of the kid in the ad are shifting away from computers, that trend (let alone other technical developments like AR, VR, and 4K video) increases the demand for powerful "Pro" machines. Similarly, you can't do CAD on the HP Elite Slice. You need the HP Z2 Mini for that.

    Apple may be drifting away from the consumer iMac and MacBook, toward "What's a computer?" -- BUT that also entails moving toward "Pro" machines that can support the new world of iOS, tvOS, and other devices inside the Apple ecosystem. I'd argue that means increased emphasis on iMac Pro, MacBook Pro, Mac Pro, and, yes, Mac mini Pro.

    The iMac Pro is Apple's first decisive step in this direction, but there will be others. The same tech that points to a Mac mini Pro also can be used for a more powerful MacBook Pro, for example.

    The Late 2013 Mac Pro was a sort of early, tentative step in this direction, but not decisive enough, as the design was unable to adapt to the rapidly changing landscape as the era of the "personal computer" comes to an end.
    I hope you're right about a general trend there.
    My issue with the iMac Pro is that it's kind of an odd machine. It costs a ton of money, but is it really going to be pro in the sense of a work-horse? Can the adequately cool it so it could crunch something heavy 24x7? I suppose it's possible, but I have my doubts. If it can't then it's more of a really fast novelty machine, IMO.

    Also, I don't think the 'trash can' Mac Pro was a bad machine or bad design. In fact it would be a pretty good machine for my needs if it had TB3. It just wasn't the machine a lot of heavy-duty pros wanted or needed. It fit a certain kind of pro, and prosumer... but it's too expensive for prosumer.
    edited December 2017
  • Reply 74 of 78
    cgWerks said:
    tenthousandthings said:
    Like you, I could be wrong, but I think, unlike the Cube, the iMac Pro is more of a harbinger of the future than most people recognize right now. I think the Late 2013 Mac Pro and the Late 2014 Mac mini were wake-up calls for Apple's leadership, but not in the ways we might imagine.

    Instead, we are going to see more emphasis on "Pro" -- indeed, there is a good case to be made for a "Mac mini Pro" based on emerging tech (see my earlier post in this thread). If you think about it, the current "What's a computer?" (says kid with using iPad as computer) Apple ad also fits into this.

    Consider the Late 2014 Mac mini -- a half-hearted refresh. Apple seems to have decided to just do the minimum. I won't say that the plan was to discontinue it, but I do think the original plan was to downgrade it to something much like the HP Elite Slice.

    Then reality struck. It turns out that, while consumers like parents of the kid in the ad are shifting away from computers, that trend (let alone other technical developments like AR, VR, and 4K video) increases the demand for powerful "Pro" machines. Similarly, you can't do CAD on the HP Elite Slice. You need the HP Z2 Mini for that.

    Apple may be drifting away from the consumer iMac and MacBook, toward "What's a computer?" -- BUT that also entails moving toward "Pro" machines that can support the new world of iOS, tvOS, and other devices inside the Apple ecosystem. I'd argue that means increased emphasis on iMac Pro, MacBook Pro, Mac Pro, and, yes, Mac mini Pro.

    The iMac Pro is Apple's first decisive step in this direction, but there will be others. The same tech that points to a Mac mini Pro also can be used for a more powerful MacBook Pro, for example.

    The Late 2013 Mac Pro was a sort of early, tentative step in this direction, but not decisive enough, as the design was unable to adapt to the rapidly changing landscape as the era of the "personal computer" comes to an end.
    I hope you're right about a general trend there.
    My issue with the iMac Pro is that it's kind of an odd machine. It costs a ton of money, but is it really going to be pro in the sense of a work-horse? Can the adequately cool it so it could crunch something heavy 24x7? I suppose it's possible, but I have my doubts. If it can't then it's more of a really fast novelty machine, IMO.

    Also, I don't think the 'trash can' Mac Pro was a bad machine or bad design. In fact it would be a pretty good machine for my needs if it had TB3. It just wasn't the machine a lot of heavy-duty pros wanted or needed. It fit a certain kind of pro, and prosumer... but it's too expensive for prosumer.
    I kind of over-edited that, but you got the gist.

    I didn't mean to trash (hehe) the Late 2013 Mac Pro, but they misjudged a basic element of its design and the result seems to have been some soul-searching -- "Sometimes you just get it wrong." You correct it and move on. We'll see in 2018, but the iMac Pro is the first step in that.

    Something to think about: the iMac Pro has the same series of CPU as the current Mac Pro -- Xeon W is the current form of those Xeon E5-16xx/26xx processors. So if it does actually handle the heat well, then it is essentially a replacement for the current Mac Pro in terms of power.
    cgWerks
  • Reply 75 of 78
    VRing said:
    I don't know why this has to be so complicated. I mean, look what HP put together a year ago with the Z2 Mini G3.


    Simple, small and relatively powerful.

    Apple's next Mac mini doesn't need any gimmicks or fancy design. Just make it small, competitively priced and useful.
    The case could even be slightly larger and that would be fine too. Maybe just a little easier to access the internals for upgrading.
    welshdog
  • Reply 76 of 78
    cgWerkscgWerks Posts: 2,752member
    tenthousandthings said:
    I didn't mean to trash (hehe) the Late 2013 Mac Pro, but they misjudged a basic element of its design and the result seems to have been some soul-searching -- "Sometimes you just get it wrong." You correct it and move on. We'll see in 2018, but the iMac Pro is the first step in that.

    Something to think about: the iMac Pro has the same series of CPU as the current Mac Pro -- Xeon W is the current form of those Xeon E5-16xx/26xx processors. So if it does actually handle the heat well, then it is essentially a replacement for the current Mac Pro in terms of power.
    I hope you're right because I like your future (re: Apple) much more than mine. :)

    And, yes, I suppose if the iMac Pro can adequately cool, it will fit the bill for some pros (like the current Mac Pro did). I'm skeptical about the adequate cooling, though. The iMac I had wasn't something I would have risked running 24x7 for too long, as I'm pretty sure I would have started damaging components. That's my same concern with MacBook Pros, but at least there, it has the excuse of limitations due to portability. (ie: it is a recognized trade-off the pro has to take into account) A pro desktop shouldn't have that limitation.

    jbaustian said:
    The case could even be slightly larger and that would be fine too. Maybe just a little easier to access the internals for upgrading.
    Right. I like that Apple tries to make their products smaller, thinner, etc. to an extent. But, when the trade-offs are too great or they are just doing it to do it, that becomes a problem. I'd rather see a capable Mini than a 'smallest ever' Mini. Though, if they made a mid-range Mac, then the Mini could truly the small entry-level model.
  • Reply 77 of 78
    thewbthewb Posts: 78member
    I think if the form factor changes at all then it will look like AppleTV 4K or NUC, and in any case (no pun intended) it will continue to have Intel inside.

    Apple has made the rare pre-announcement that a redesign of Mac Pro that will be more modular is coming. I'd like to see a new Mac Mini design that is descended from that, similarly modular but with fewer slots, much like the difference between ATX and Mini-ITX.
  • Reply 78 of 78
    Soli said:
    Soli said:
    jimwilson said:
    It’s probably been said before: higher powered Mac Mini will be subcomponent of Mac Pro, parallel architecture ...
    That would be kind of cool (I've actually done that in the past in a way). But, I think cloud-computing would make it hard to compete or gain traction. That ship sailed a decade or so ago. I guess if you had to have it in-house for security reasons or something.
    The holdup is the big round building. I expect to see quicker refreshments of all models after a year they have occupied the saucer. 
    Is this more facetiousness that doesn't include notion of humour? If not, why do you think product designers and programmers are being pulled off their jobs because of "the big round building"? It would seem they still have the same office spaces before the project started over 6.5 years ago, so do you think that the same person engineering a computer circuit board is also an architect for a industrial building? I can assure you they do have contractors for that. I think that leaves Apple employees as simply being lazy so is suggesting poor management? Is there an implication that Cook should be fired? Appleinsider infamously kept writing articles about how the Mac mini finally had its final coffin nail for what seemed like several years, so what was the reason for the Mac mini languishing for so long under Jobs if there was no Apple Park project at the time? I guess that could be the iPhone or iPod, but at least those are CE so I can see how you may need those HW and SW engineers to work on those new projects, but for Apple Park I don't see how that's possible.
    I read, years ago, a research paper that whenever a business would build a humongous headquarter it would reflect negatively on the results. There was a direct relationship. I don’t understand why Apple is not continuing with regular updates the way it did years ago. Every year, maybe even faster, without much fuss, suddenly the whole range of iMacs or Mini’s or whatever would get faster memory, faster CPU’s etc. These last years are different in that respect and I have yet to read a good explanation. 
    1) I think we saw a drop when there was heavy iPhone development. Could this be due to Apple's engineers working on another major innovation, like a self-driving system and/or AR and/or VR products?

    2) As noted with the Mac mini's sordid past, we've seen Apple do this often with low-volume products. How often does the iPod Touch get updated and that would be comparatively simple to do since they've already done it all for that year's iPhone.

    3) Intel keeps pushing back release dates, doesn't seem to ramp up volume as fast (or maybe the sales are more saturated out of the gate because of backed up demand from their longer release times), the iterations aren't as dramatic, processing speed seems to more than necessary for the majority of users today, and the focus for the whole PC market is  likely to have another year of decline ending 2017 (which I think would make the 6th year in a row). One part of that equation is Apple clearly putting more focus on the iPhone, but the bigger picture is the whole market isn't as focused on people buying PCs which reduces inertia.

    4) Many here have said the PC will go away but I can't see that happening; however, I do see this trend with the Mac continuing long after Apple Park is filled up—save for the usual blips in product launches—unless they finally come out with a lower price point which will dramatically increase the potential market, but that seems only possible with ARM-based Macs.
    Agee, many factors might add to this slower upgrade cycle. Adding to my point is the article about Ive taking a more handson role now that his work on the headquarter is finished. 
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