nht

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  • Apple launched Macintosh on January 24, 1984 and changed the world -- eventually

    Raskin’s original vision of the Mac sucked.  It would have been text based with no mouse and no GUI.  

    The Canon CAT was his vision and lacked GUI and mouse.  He may have been to Xerox PARC first but completely rejected everything they learned.  

    The one button mouse was obviously the wrong choice given that everyone can keep track of what two buttons do...IF it was his contribution, and some folks dispute that, it was another poor one.

    Raskin also had a tendency to “embellish” his accomplishments.  He, as Andy once commented, was NOT the father of the mac but it’s strange uncle...one with a nearsighted  vision of where computing would go.

    He’s another example of an engineer under Jobs that did well at Apple and never did anything really relevant again after...and IMHO his primary contribution to the Max was hiring Atkinson and promoting Hertzfeld from service to development.
    Soliradarthekatronncharlesatlasraulcristianwatto_cobrajony0
  • The new Mac mini is a great machine, but a $499 model could serve a larger audience


    The market appears to be there for a $499 Mac mini, so the the only two questions left is whether Apple wants to enter that price-point again, or is capable of manufacturing a machine for that price. It certainly managed to build them right up to about last Tuesday when it finally replaced the $499 Mac mini with this new design.
    There isn't a real business case for re-entering the $499 market.  What's the advantage for Apple to trash ASPs and sell $499 machines instead $799 machines?  Would it really double Mac sales?  

    Apple is already going to lose more valuable iMac sales to Mini sales as the new minis have very high bang for the buck.

    And did Apple lose the edu market to Chromebooks or Google Docs?  You aren't going to beat $200 chromebooks with a $500 Mac when the $300 iPads can't make a significant dent.
    macplusplusdewmeracerhomie3stompyStrangeDayselijahgphilboogiemacxpresscornchipwatto_cobra
  • Samsung's Galaxy Note 8 gets positive reviews, comparisons with iPhone 7 Plus 'Portrait' m...

    EngDev said:
    nht said:
    EngDev said:
    macseeker said:
    Seems like the iPhone 7+ picture is sharper.


    Source: Macworld
    In this case the iPhone is applying blur and Note 8 isn't.  The iPhone is attempting to do a very thin DOF with focus only on the face.  It's as the more aggressive of the two in terms of attempting bokeh.  Also, it appears that the iPhone missed focus in this capture.  I wonder if she was moving during the shot.

    Whether her chest would be in focus or not in a real DSLR depends on how busty she is.  Not very so likely in focus.  

    The Note 8 is obviously less aggressive as seen in this comparison where the iPhone gets it more right but the Note doesn't


    Both seem to have problems with blur depending on the scenario. I think Macworld did a decent job outlining these cases. They're right about the iPhone focusing too much on the face.
    Not when it's called "Portrait Mode".  Typically the face is the thing you want to get in focus for portraits.  In particular, the eyes.  With a thin DOF even ears are out of focus.  Here's an example.  Eyes in focus, ears not.



    Often pros do additional post processing to make the eyes pop even more.



    Eyes in focus, ears and shirt not.



    Eyes in focus, ears and blouse not.  The DoF is an inch or two deep at most.

    Post processing includes upping the exposure just for the iris to enhance eye colors, increasing sharpness and contrast, etc, cleaning up the whites of the eyes, artificially adding light reflection or enhancing the light reflection in the eyes.

    In basic portraiture you focus on the eyes.

    Saying that the iPhone focuses too much on the face for portraiture is plain stupid.  

    The primary criticism for that iPhone 7 shot is that it missed focus...not that it focused too much on the face.  It actually got the blur correct but the eyes and face are a bit muddy focused.  Since the iPhone nailed focus in other shots I mark that down as user error.

    Frankly, the entire piece from Mac World is shoddy.  The model is posed differently for each phone.  Adam, despite being "Video Director & Photographer, MacWorld", apparently doesn't own a DSLR with a prime lens to shoot for reference.

    Adding a reference would have taken a few extra moments...it's literally "hold the pose" Snap, switch, snap, switch, snap.  Not let me be a dumbass and shoot each camera in series and then end up with different poses, distance and worse...lighting.  

    What did we learn from Adam's comparisons?  That he doesn't actually know how to run photographic comparisons.

    TL;DR;  Its called Portrait Mode.  Focusing on the face is entirely the point.
    tmaywonkothesaneboltsfan17patchythepirate2old4funredgeminipa
  • If you think Tim Cook is 'robbing' you, then so was Steve Jobs

    madan said:
    The lowest end Mini has an i3 that trades with a 2400g...a 150 dollar CPU.  Hardly a world beater in an 800 dollar computer.

    The DDR4 in a Mini isn't 3200.  It's 2666 which is fast by Mac standards but isn't even the fastest on the market.


    The only great part about the Mini is the fact that it's:

    A. Small & stylish in a nice aluminum box with excellent heat management through shared blowers, proper air routing, software cooling profiles and thermal skin dissipation.

    B. It has that insane motherboard design with fantastically forward thinking IO (thunderbolt-enabled USB-C ahoy!).

    Beyond that, you mentioned it.  It uses IGP.  The issue isn't whether Mini purchasers need it.  It's whether Apple charges people like the Mini *has* that grunt.  Which it doesn't have.

    A 2400g, some fast RAM, a nice PCIE SSD on a mini ITX would be about twice the size.  Sure.  And no Mac OS X.  And you'd lose 2 or 3 USB C ports.  But you'd also chip 400 dollars on a computer that could tie the Mini on half the tasks and run rings around it on the other half.

    Again, Mac OS is the best OS on the market.  Apple hardware engineering is great.  But is it worth 100% markup great? I wonder.  They're charging the same that a Dell with a Core i5/twice the fast RAM/and a GTX 1060 costs.  And those two systems aren't even in the same solar system, much less planet.

    So yeah. Mazda.  Ferrari. Fits.

    The NSX used the engine from the Legend
    Lamborghini and Audi collaborated on the V10 engine used in the Gallardo and Huracan.
    Pagani Huayra uses a Mercedes V12 engine.
    Aston Martin Vantage uses a Mercedes V8
    The Lous Evora uses a Toyota engine.

    The i3 Mini you are whining about is faster than the 2017 15" MBP Core i7-7920HQ in single core and faster than the 2017 21: iMac Core i5-7500 in multicore.

    That leads me to believe you know very little about supercars or computers.
    sphericfastasleepelijahgmacplusplusradarthekat
  • The new Mac mini is a great machine, but a $499 model could serve a larger audience

    nht said:

    The market appears to be there for a $499 Mac mini, so the the only two questions left is whether Apple wants to enter that price-point again, or is capable of manufacturing a machine for that price. It certainly managed to build them right up to about last Tuesday when it finally replaced the $499 Mac mini with this new design.
    There isn't a real business case for re-entering the $499 market.  What's the advantage for Apple to trash ASPs and sell $499 machines instead $799 machines?  Would it really double Mac sales?  

    Apple is already going to lose more valuable iMac sales to Mini sales as the new minis have very high bang for the buck.

    And did Apple lose the edu market to Chromebooks or Google Docs?  You aren't going to beat $200 chromebooks with a $500 Mac when the $300 iPads can't make a significant dent.
    Services.

    You still need to show that the $500 price point would sufficiently increase Mac sales so that it's a positive outcome even counting service income.  What's more, the buyers of $500 PCs are likely not as good a demographic for services than $800 PC buyers...just like the buyers of $100 Android phones are not as good a demographic for services as $600+ iPhone buyers.

    So that's still not a good business case for introducing a $500 mini and trashing your $1200 iMac sales when the $300 iPad already exists and is positioned within the Apple product line for the edu/low end market.

    And iOS devices trounce MacOS devices in volume.  So service income is largely dominated by iPads (ie cars) than Macs (trucks) anyway.
    williamlondonRayz2016StrangeDayselijahgphilboogiemacxpresscornchipwatto_cobra
  • Another test finds HomePod frequency response flat, but results potentially meaningless

    DAalseth said:
    It's my understanding that the HomePod plays whatever source it's fed, then listens to the echo coming back and fine tunes its output to make what it's hearing match the source as closely as possible. Would that even work in an anechoic chamber? Would you get anything like best performance if it could not hear itself?
    Yes, the HomePod would work fine in an anechoic chamber.

    The automatic adjustment in the HomePod is supposed to compensate for the standing waves that occur when the sound waves bounce off a surface. In an anechoic chamber there are no reflections, thus nothing for the HomePod to "fix."

    Traditional speakers are measured in an anechoic chamber because the phase effects from the sound waves bouncing off the walls, ceiling and floor affect the response readings. The readings wind up telling you how the speaker will sound only placed in that exact position in that exact room at exactly one listening position. That result will be different in every room and position within any given room.

    The point of testing in an anechoic chamber is to establish an objective assessment of what the speaker is CAPABLE of doing without the effects of some arbitrary room polluting the results. A "real world" test isn't possible because no two listening situations are the same. Measuring a speaker where I will use it tells you nothing about how it will behave in YOUR situation. That's why it's so important to audition speakers at home before making a final decision.

    If the HomePod actually does what Apple claims -- automatically compensate for room effects -- it shouldn't be necessary to isolate it in an anechoic chamber for testing, since it theoretically should sound the same in ANY room. So far the jury is still out on how well it actually does that in real life. It may be more marketing than magic.
    Fixing room acoustics is not the only use of beam forming.  Removing the ability for the home pod to perform in the way it was meant to perform by sticking it on a anechoic chamber degrades it's performance as a speaker.  This would be like claiming that engine dynamometer testing is a useful "objective assessment of car performance".  It tells you what the engine is capable of doing...not the car.  Even a chassis dyno doesn't tell you the story about car performance...just drivetrain and engine.

    Anechoic chamber testing has value for certain types of speakers and less for others.  Using chamber tests won't answer whether bipole, dipole or direct radiating (monopole) speakers work best for surround sound.  Any speaker design that depends on reflection for part of its performance will get crippled in a chamber.  Only front facing, direct radiating designs should be compared to each other based on chamber testing.
    netmagerandominternetpersonjasenj1
  • Gartner, IDC were both wildly wrong in guessing Apple's Q4 Mac shipments

    The downside of no longer reporting units is this sort of BS can no longer be refuted.
    retrogustolostkiwimuthuk_vanalingamneo-techcornchipwilliamlondonMuntzasdasdwaltgwatto_cobra
  • First look at the new space gray 2018 Mac mini

    tylersdad said:
    toxicman said:
    Seriously!  A fully configured Mac Mini without keyboard, mouse and monitor is over $4299!

    for what?  I7 6 core, with 64gb ram and a 1.5tb SSD.   That’s a $1800 PC.  Come on apple.  Get real.  
    Who’s forcing you to order the maxed-out top-tier machine? Are you OK? Do you need help?

    Oh, you’re just whining about price. Would it make you feel better if Apple didn’t offer that top-tier? If everyone of all income-levels had to buy the same exact lower-tier machine? Would that make it better?
    Even the lower spec'd machines are ridiculously overpriced. I guess some people don't mind paying for "awesome engineering as a feature". Count me out. The value proposition just isn't there. And don't give me that crap about Apple using more awesomer components than every other computer manufacturer. They source the same parts as every other manufacturer. They don't get better Intel I3 chips. They don't get better RAM. They don't get better hard drives. 

    Core i7 comparison

    $1849 - 21.5" 4K iMac 3.6GHz Quad Core i7 w/ 16GB RAM and 256GB SSD, Radeon Pro 555 2GB DDR5 

    $1774 - 28" 4K Samsung UHD monitor ($295) 
    Mac mini 3.2GHz Hexa Core i7 ($1229) w/16GB RAM (Amazon $150), logitech keyboard/mouse ($100) and 256GB SSD, Intel UHD Graphics 630

    $2224- 28" 4K Samsung UHD monitor ($295) Mac mini 3.2GHz Hexa Core i7 ($1229) w/16GB RAM (Amazon $150), logitech keyboard/mouse ($100) and 256GB SSD, Sonnet eGFX 550W ($270) + Radeon RX560 4GB DDR5 ($180)

    $2599 - 27" 5K iMac 4.2GHz Quad Core i7 w/16GB RAM and 256GB SSD, Radeon Pro 575 4GB DDR5

    Base iMac comparison

    $1049 21.5" iMac 2.3GHz Dual Core i5, 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD, 1920x1080 Display, Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640
    $1100 24" Mac mini 3.6 Ghz Quad Core i3, 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD, ViewSonic 2560x1440 IPS Display ($221), Logitiech Keyboard & Mouse $100, Intel UHD Graphics 630

    The Mac Mini is priced very reasonably.

    If you think the Mac mini is "ridiculously overpriced" then Macs simply aren't for you.  I would suggest this forum is more your speed:  
    https://www.dell.com/community/

    All of this price whining is just stupid.  The Mac mini sits between the two iMacs in both price and performance.  If Apple releases the mini on a regular basis then it becomes a much better deal than the iMac since you get to reuse the monitor, keyboard and mouse.
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  • The new Mac mini is a great machine, but a $499 model could serve a larger audience


    I'm still wondering why Apple didn't opt for a variant of the new Mini with the new Intel CPU/AMD GPU hybrid in it. They are clearly aiming this at more of a pro market. Lot's of rendering (or other tasks) could be offloaded to the Vega GPU, and you could pick up some gaming sales, too. Seems like a no-brainer to me. The performance of the Vega absolutely blows away the Intel integrated graphics in every metric. Apps using Metal2 should scream on that chip. Touting FCPX & Compressor performance on a box with integrated graphics seemed kind of odd after Apple has talked up the capabilities of Metal2 so much. My $0.02, as ever.
    Available as the Blackmagic Vega eGPU for $1199.  With two TB3 controllers you can have both an eGPU and a RAID array running on separate TB3s.

    The i7 Mini w/32GB, 1TB SSD and 10GbE ($2600) + Vega ($1200) is $3800.  

    That leaves you a $1200 budget for keyboard, mouse and monitor in comparison to the base iMac Pro at $4999 (also with 32GB and 1 TB SSD).  While the iMac Pro is faster (2 cores worth) the Mini enjoys higher single core performance and likely better thermal management for the Vega.

    Complaints that the mini is "too expensive" ignores that it is the most cost effective Mac in the entire line up at every pricing tier.  This IS the mini that folks have been waiting for since 2012.  Forget the $499 base price.  This is like bitching the iPhone XR is too expensive at $749.  People are asking for the Mac product line entry point to essentially be the same as the iPhone product line entry point (the two year old iPhone 7 at $449).  You want a $499 Mac?  Buy the 2014 just like you buy the iPhone 7.  Still available new from Best Buy.

    Fuck you people
    (not you txsbaker75, yours was a perfectly fine question). It's insanely stupid to be outraged that the Mini base price moved to $799 when it offers so much bang for the buck.  

    I believe that succinctly enumerates my position on this matter.
    dewmemacpluspluswilliamlondonmacxpress
  • If you think Tim Cook is 'robbing' you, then so was Steve Jobs

    madan said:
    nht said:
    To pick a nit:

    Consistent gross margins don't tell me anything about changes to the affordability of products. One doesn't need to be a financial analyst to figure out that the price of a 15" MacBook Pro is substantially higher, even after inflation, than it was five years ago. If the reason for that isn't growing margins, then obviously costs have also increased. Maybe Apple has a problem with cost control and/or spending decisions?
    Or maybe the ratio of costs to selling prices have remained steady for cutting edge technologies.  If it were milk or toasters we were talking about then I could understand your implication that input costs should not be increasing and perhaps even be going down.  But Apple is doing the same thing today as it was doing 10, 15, 20 years ago; developing new products with increasing performance and capabilities.  Seems that will always remain the same percentage of total costs.  
    I hear you, except that price increases are accelerating compared to the past. Why are costs so much higher lately than they used to be?

    It may well be that this is just how much it costs to make fancy-pants computers now. I'm neither qualified nor adequately informed to offer an opinion about what Apple should or could do. All I'm saying is the current approach is moving the income level required to be an Apple user even higher. Our middle-class household can no longer afford the products we used to buy on a three-year cycle. Maybe I need to just accept that and walk away. I hope not, though.
    Price increases in the Mac product line represent the move to higher performance in the components for SSD, TB3, screen density, etc while achieving the size and weight desired for that product line.  The cost for software development increases because the OS is more complex than it was.

    Thus margins indicate that costs have increased and not profits.

    Also, the needs of most middle-class households can now be met by iPads or lower tier Macs rather than 6 core i7 15" MBP.   The downside to the product line is that the direct replacement for a MBP from 3 years ago has a smaller screen but likely also costs less.

    Apple still provides the iPhone 7 at $449 when talking about iPhones.  The iPhone 8 is $599.  The three year old iPhone 6s was $649 at launch.  The 8 is a solid upgrade at $50 less than your $649 replacement budget.  The Xr costs $749 but is 6.1"...so it's a worthwhile stretch if you want to go that route and the same price as the 6S Plus.  So if your phone was a 6S Plus in 2015 the Xr is a direct replacement at the same price.

    There's just this extra tier above the tier that you purchased in 2015 and there isn't a smaller option anymore.

    That you don't like the upgrade path doesn't mean that Apple has priced it out of the range of a middle-class household.  If you could afford a $649 phone every three years in 2015 you can afford a $599 iPhone 8 in $2018.  The Xr should be $649 next year if the pattern holds and be an excellent replacement for a 3 year old iPhone 7.

    Call it "gaslighting" but the complaints are simply entitled bullshit.  There's no "acceleration" in price increase.  The replacement for the 6S Plus is the Xr at the same price point.  There wasn't a replacement for the 6S but a viable replacement is $50 less expensive than the 6S was in 2015.  The Xs is a higher tier product than the 6S was.

    6S->7->8->Xr

    Your entire argument is horseshit.

    You can't charge more for more performance otherwise every product in existence is an order of magnitude better than previous products.  Automobiles are much faster, fuel efficient and safer than past vehicles.  By your distorted, stunted argument every Toyota Corolla or Honda Accord should ship for 80,000 "cuz look how much better they are!".  Computers increase in performance over time.  Their prices increase relative to pv calculations and inflation fluctuations.  They might also increase as Wurthele astutely indicated because they have some intrinsic cost (ie support or services).  However products shouldn't cost more just "cuz betta".  That's nonsense because by definitions computers ard phones are *better* than the previous model.  Otherwise, what would be the *point*?
    Did you really go there with a car analogy?  Because that's just stupid.  Are you so clueless as not to realize that people complain about how cars are more expensive than before?  There was a time that they cost under $10K.

    Try googling "cars too expensive" and see how colossally stupid it was to use that to try to bolster your position. 

    And more importantly they are not "charing more for more performance".  They are charging the SAME or LESS for more performance.  The iPhone 8 is $50 cheaper than the 6S was at launch and much much faster.  That the 6S was the most expensive tier in 2015 is immaterial.  The Xr is the 2018 replacement for the 2015 6S (Plus).  Just like the 8 was the 2017 replacement for the 7.  That the X and Xs are two new premium tiers above the old line didn't make the old line more expensive.  

    Both the 8 and the X had an A11.  Both the Xr and the Xs have an A12.  None of the phones cheaper than the 6S had the A9 as the 6S in 2015.
    fastasleepelijahgradarthekat