The new Mac Pro: Hands on, and what you need to know
Posted 12 June 2013 - 05:11 PM
Relax guys, go with the flow and I am sure you will find that it is not the end of the world after all. Heaven forbid, you might even find that you love it!
Posted 12 June 2013 - 06:32 PM
But is it really better ("theoretically," at this stage) than the iMac in terms of performance on the apps we use most? Again, no one here seems to know that. But I would expect that people who know Mac Pro Xeons and i7's in iMacs SHOULD know this. More specifically...
In terms of what software you and I (common people) use our iMacs for (which may even include some Pro apps like Photoshop or Aperture), would the Mac Pro's low-clock-speed Xeon CPU really be noticeably faster than a BTO i7 iMac whose Turbo Boost clock speed approaches 4GHz? (Yes, I am aware that the Mac Pro has much faster video and SSD capability and RAM. But I am talking strictly about CPU performance here.)
In other words, wouldn't the Mac Pro be even faster overall if they just reduced the cores and blasted the clock speed? Is the use of an expensive Xeon CPU really a better choice than a maxed out Haswell?
Posted 12 June 2013 - 11:10 PM
I agree with John and must disagree with fourshades.
• Thunderbolt 2 is great and offering 6 independent TB2 channels is a gesture toward "expandability" for mid-range users, but this is no substitute for PCIe3 slots (and pros don't mind opening up enclosures).
• The Mini Pro may display 4k x2, but without massive PCIe flash memory, it is likely to be pretty slow at editing 4k video.
• 12-core Xeon Mac Pros with 4 SSDs, hardware RAID, and very fast graphics cards have been around for 3 years now – that's 2 generations in computer years; is this objet d'art two computer generations faster and more powerful? No. Just smaller.
• I don't think many real pros are that concerned about how small or sexy their CPU is; like many others who have posted here, I prefer my CPU protected under my desk (keeps my feet warm in winter ;-) or in a rack.
• I agree that the Cube and this Mini Plus are elegant designs and I can see this thing on the desks of fashionistas, but I'm afraid I may need to look elsewhere for my needs.
• If Apple doesn't quickly come up with a real pro machine, I fear it may lose its many strong Mac advocates in the scientific community.
• Another alternative would be a startup like Power Computing; this seems like a wonderful opportunity for such an enterprise (I'll even pay up front for a 16 to 24-core machine that runs Mac OS).
Someone earlier asked why Sandy Bridge-E rather than Haswell processors: as I understand it, the simple answer is that Sandy Bridge-E is the most current multiprocessing/multisocket desktop chip (2011-pin socket); Ivy Bridge-E is expected later this year, but Haswell-E chips don't even have a projected date yet.
Posted 13 June 2013 - 12:25 AM
Posted 13 June 2013 - 09:48 AM
Instead, the new Mac Pro is now an object of desire, one that well-off consumers will want to buy as an objet d'art even if they don't need its sheer processing power. And I'd guess that the black shiny aluminum finish could find its way into other Macs over time. For example, the MacBook Pro just might get a shiny black aluminum enclosure. This would allow for ultralight construction similar to the current MacBook Air, but would get rid of that bare aluminum bezel around the screen.
The shiny blackness could be used to further differentiate the consumer from Pro models. Mac Pro: shiny black aluminum cylinder. iMac: textured bare aluminum "chin" and back. MacBook Pro: shiny black aluminum enclosure. MacBook Air: textured bare aluminum enclosure. Just a thought.
Posted 13 June 2013 - 11:13 AM
That goes without saying: People will always be pleased by things others aren't. That's why we live in a world of constant change that never really changes. This also means that it will not please 'all' Pros and Mid Levels. There should be nothing surprising about this.
Yes and No. There are some things that don't really 'need' to be on the outside. Though, adding thunderbolt and USB3 to the new Mini Pro is long overdue, IMO. This is also a great way to generate new sales if you want to look at it from that standpoint. Customers may feel a little differently about it.
That need doesn't happen often in the real world. It's normally not an issue. The only time most people 'need' to open a machine is to upgrade or replace something after it's failed. People rarely suffer daily failures and the need to rearrange the internal structure of their machines on a regular basis--once a year is my upgrade timeline. Opening a machine isn't a big deal at a yearly interval. Others will obviously have different needs.
Technically, this machine will be home no matter where a person sticks it. It's how one uses it that is more important, I would think.
Posted 13 June 2013 - 11:29 AM
Obviously you aren't a graphics pro.
That ugly box performs a function, quite well I might add (I have an Early 2009 Mac Pro).
Thunderbolt is not going to come down in price because no PC vendor other than Apple offers it. A 2-slot thunderbolt chassis costs $700.00 dude. And did you skip over -
"Before the new Mac Pro was announced, one of the frequent comments we heard was that professional-level users want upgradeable video cards. We can’t say anything definitively based on the limited information Apple has provided, but Apple’s website sure makes it look as though those dual GPUs are permanent residents—it doesn’t appear that you’ll be able to swap them out for more-powerful versions down the road. "
If you have thousands of dollars invested in peripherals and add-ins as I do, this is a non-starter.
Just because something is new and different doesn't mean it's better.
Posted 13 June 2013 - 11:33 AM
Check it out -
Posted 14 June 2013 - 08:40 PM
Mac Pro's design is fantastic, but so was the G4 Cube's design.
I never owned one but I used to demo them as an Apple rep (using it to demo iMovie, which came out around the same time). That was an incredibly cool design. I bought a shell in mint, seamless / crackless condition a few years ago and removed the top grill. It makes for a cool (and very geeky) tissue dispenser.
Posted 14 June 2013 - 08:45 PM
Posted 20 June 2013 - 10:26 AM
Yep, you did indeed miss something.
Its now all done with the six Thunderbolt 2 ports and expansion chassis that your were planning to made, that is of course if your were a Vendor. (Manufacture)
There are a number of Manufactures selling Thunderbolt expansion chassis right now!
So it's a deal, right!
Time to fork over a few thousand dollars, just for the low end model.
Posted 20 June 2013 - 11:24 PM
Considering compilers and coding languages have not advanced much for multi-core and -threaded programming this past decade, I'd say what critique is a moot point. You will not run big data on a Mac Pro. You'll run it on the cloud using specialized tools and languages sucking in computing resources as needed, dynamically. Nobody is going to spend money on a 32-core machine only to find out most of the time they need half as much or 50% more. So this concern, at its face, is rather misplaced.
Posted 22 June 2013 - 12:47 PM
Someone who doesn't need the GPU power will get the rest of the performance more cheaply, and you will still get bleeding edge 8k3d video editing monster. 8)