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inkswamp
May 14, 2008, 03:01 AM
Wow! This guy absolutely friggin' nails it, calling Apple on their BS.

Open letter to Steve Jobs. Re: Mac Mini Pro (http://techthoughts.org/2008/02/15/open-letter-to-steve-jobs-re-mac-mini-pro/)

It's a few months old but I'm surprised I haven't seen this circulated on any Mac sites. I think this guy aptly sums up a lot of the frustration I see out there with Apple's limited hardware offerings. The demand for this is out there and has been growing steadily for the last couple years. I don't see why Apple refuses to acknowledge it and fill the gap.

Who knows? Maybe WWDC will bring a big surprise in this regard. I kinda doubt it, but I'd love to be proven wrong. :rolleyes:



richard.mac
May 14, 2008, 03:14 AM
WOW! he explained it very well. this is what i want for my new Mac.

i hope Steve replies to this.

i also highly doubt this will be released at WWDC even though i want it to be. just like the announcement of 10.6.

Shivetya
May 14, 2008, 07:01 AM
An interesting read but he gets off track a bit.

I have the same problem as he does, I need the expandability of the pro, the ability replace components, but I don't need the over the top features the current pro has. It is almost as if Apple looked for the highest priced features they could find and then put them all in one machine thereby isolating their market share to about nil while garnering lots of big words for marketing.

Neutral Gamer
May 14, 2008, 07:12 AM
I agree with this guy and hopefully one of Steve's assistants will pass on this open letter to him. I can definitely empathise with the *size* of the Mac Pro. It's absolutely massive!

When you see it in photos you just assume it to be a normal sized tower but when you go into an Apple Store and see it in person, your immediate reaction is "Wow!" It takes so much space up compared to the other Macs that Apple sell, it'd be nice if they made one that was half the size, i.e. a Mac Pro Mini or, as this guy says, a Mac Mini Pro.

cgdotcom
May 14, 2008, 08:20 AM
Hmmm. Sounds to me like he just needs a bigger desk. He wants a powerful machine, and would pay $1500, but refuses to spend $2800 on a Mac Pro? I appreciate that $1300 is a big chunk for a home user, but surely a self-confessed "Pro" wouldn't see this as an unrealistic amount to spend?

Perhaps if he spent less time writing long rants for his blog, and more time working for his clients, he'd have more disposable income ;)

I've got a Mac Pro and it's great. Yes, it was expensive, and it would have been nice if it had only cost £400, but it'd also be a bonus if it was the size of a shoebox. It isn't going to happen.

I do understand the argument for a "headless" Mac, but... personally, I just don't see its omission from the line-up as the appalling, OMG-I'll-never-buy-another-Mac-again travesty that some people seem to think it is. Just my 2p.

TBi
May 14, 2008, 08:25 AM
I don't like the tone of the article. The language is very aggressive and pointed. Not a good way to win someone over to your way of thinking. He should have let the facts speak for themselves without embellishment.

macenforcer
May 14, 2008, 09:11 AM
But will apple listen? NO. Never have, never will.

4God
May 14, 2008, 09:19 AM
But will apple listen? NO. Never have, never will.

LOL, sure they will/have: Next acquisition, Psystar. ;)

Cave Man
May 14, 2008, 09:24 AM
Hmmm. Sounds to me like he just needs a bigger desk. He wants a powerful machine, and would pay $1500, but refuses to spend $2800 on a Mac Pro? I appreciate that $1300 is a big chunk for a home user, but surely a self-confessed "Pro" wouldn't see this as an unrealistic amount to spend?

I do understand the argument for a "headless" Mac, but... personally, I just don't see its omission from the line-up as the appalling, OMG-I'll-never-buy-another-Mac-again travesty that some people seem to think it is. Just my 2p.

Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

macenforcer
May 14, 2008, 09:27 AM
Yeah, I caved in and bought the mac pro last weekend and filled it up with ram and HD and 8800GT. I figured screw it, I have the money. Still pissed about it though. WOuld have much rather had a 4 core smaller box for half the price.

MM123
May 14, 2008, 11:04 AM
Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

Well, I'm in the same boat, and most probably a lot of other people too. I love my mini (have upgraded everything what was possible).
In the "old PPC days" we have no knowledge, what is going on in HW, but that Intel transition give us (customers) much more information about whats going on in HW, so please no fault tricks, like "Here you have a brand new Mac mini with SR chipset" a year after the chipset was introduced ...
I was more than 12 years a loyal customer, but if Apple do not "wake up" and offer something faster than nowadays minis, but something not so big like Mac pro, I quit and go the "hackintosh way", sorry Apple ...

TBi
May 14, 2008, 11:08 AM
Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

I'd be interested to know what logic board you are ordering? Manufacturer and product name?

aristobrat
May 14, 2008, 11:19 AM
But will apple listen? NO. Never have, never will.
Apple seems to listen when it's a big enough crowd talking.

The iPhone price cut rebate and SDK come to mind as examples of that.

Cave Man
May 14, 2008, 11:22 AM
Asus P5K-E/WIFI-AP. (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131196)

TBi
May 14, 2008, 11:25 AM
Asus P5K-E/WIFI-AP. (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813131196)

Looks like a nice motherboard. Seems like it gets a good rating on OSX 86 project (http://wiki.osx86project.org/wiki/index.php/HCL_10.5.2#Asus) too?

Let me know how you get on :)

mags631
May 14, 2008, 11:29 AM
Wow! This guy absolutely friggin' nails it, calling Apple on their BS.

From the "Open Letter":
If you continue to refuse to listen to your customers, your stock won’t “hang in there” and will continue to fall from the $200 a share it was, past the $122 it is now (Feb 8), and down to where it belongs in this highly competitive technological age.

Yes, he nailed it.

macintosh tech
May 14, 2008, 11:32 AM
Maybe he missed the quad core option on the Mac Pro, how convenient. I suppose that would damage his argument a bit.

If he doesn't like what they offer then don't support them. Whining for them to offer a product is just sad.

ditzy
May 14, 2008, 11:35 AM
I genuinely see his point, and agree with the majority of his points. But he was so aggressive I wanted to argue with him and tell him he was wrong. I don't think he is wrong but he needs to learn how to make friends and influence people.

andiwm2003
May 14, 2008, 11:38 AM
no chance for a expandable midrange mac ever........


Apple's other co-founder, Steve Jobs, didn't agree with Jef about many things, but they both felt the same way about hardware expandability: it was a bug instead of a feature. Steve was reportedly against having slots in the Apple II back in the days of yore, and felt even stronger about slots for the Mac. He decreed that the Macintosh would remain perpetually bereft of slots, enclosed in a tightly sealed case, with only the limited expandability of the two serial ports.


http://folklore.org/StoryView.py?story=Diagnostic_Port.txt

Neutral Gamer
May 14, 2008, 11:49 AM
If he doesn't like what they offer then don't support them. Whining for them to offer a product is just sad.

How is giving customer feedback sad?

Companies value market research highly, that's why they conduct so many surveys. They want to know what products / features existing and future customers will be prepared / want to buy.

Sure, the guy could've worded his response in a slightly less agressive way but on the whole his points are still valid. People complained about the lack of a "list" option when Stacks first came out in Leopard as well as its translucent menu bar. Apple realised from all the feedback that many people weren't happy and rectified the situation.

If we don't tell Apple what we want then how will they know we want it? ;)
http://www.apple.com/feedback/

Luzzio
May 14, 2008, 11:55 AM
Apple plays a strong card on the fact that alot of its customers are the type who don't mind paying that extra bit just because "it's Apple", regardless of OS X or hardware.

That needs to change.

Its possibly justified that the price was abit higher back in the hey because they were aimed at mainly the art industry, and operated at a niche market.

But with the transition from PPC to Intel chips and Apple now targeting home users as well, Macs now play nicer with the rest of the world. And if they lowered their prices just abit, people who would usually be deterred by the high prices would now see no reason why they shouldn't give Macs a try, the computer market would be saturated with a much higher percentage of Macs, and I believe to such an extent that the profits lost by lowering their prices would be offset by the increase in sales.

On top of that, I agree with the author of the letter... the Mac Pro is an overpriced behemoth. There's a huge gap of demand between the casual user (iMacs/Mac Mini) and very-high-end market (Mac Pro), and customers are forced to either save money and get a system that may be abit under powered, or spend alot on something which has way more power than they require.

ditzy
May 14, 2008, 12:06 PM
Apple plays a strong card on the fact that alot of its customers are the type who don't mind paying that extra bit just because "it's Apple", regardless of OS X or hardware.

That needs to change.

Its possibly justified that the price was abit higher back in the hey because they were aimed at mainly the art industry, and operated at a niche market.

But with the transition from PPC to Intel chips and Apple now targeting home users as well, Macs now play nicer with the rest of the world. And if they lowered their prices just abit, people who would usually be deterred by the high prices would now see no reason why they shouldn't give Macs a try, the computer market would be saturated with a much higher percentage of Macs, and I believe to such an extent that the profits lost by lowering their prices would be offset by the increase in sales.

On top of that, I agree with the author of the letter... the Mac Pro is an overpriced behemoth. There's a huge gap of demand between the casual user (iMacs/Mac Mini) and very-high-end market (Mac Pro), and customers are forced to either save money and get a system that may be abit under powered, or spend alot on something which has way more power than they require.

I think the problem with these sort of discussions is that people mix-up their points. Or say two points at the same time. Often one of the points is accurate but the others are not.

The Mac Pro is not over priced, it is very well priced for what it is. But if you want a mid range tower it is priced at a level more than you would be willing to pay. But that is because it is not a mid range tower and asking it to be a mid range tower is pointless, it just isn't.

I personally think that there should be a mid range tower. But just because there is not one, does not make the Mac Pro expensive.

I'd also like to add that I don't believe that any mac (apart from maybe the mini) is over priced if you compare it to what it actually is rather than what you want it to be eg the iMac is expensive compared to mid range tower but fairly priced when compared to other all-in-ones.

Neutral Gamer
May 14, 2008, 12:07 PM
And if they lowered their prices just abit, people who would usually be deterred by the high prices would now see no reason why they shouldn't give Macs a try ...

Do BMW and Mercedes lower their prices to increase market share? Like those luxury cars, when people see the Apple logo on your Mac they know you've spent money on it. The high price for these types of products, in itself, drives their demand as it adds a sense of exclusivity to it.

But Apple has more than just brand, it has superior design and a superior operating system. Hence, you're actually getting pretty good value for money!

Luzzio
May 14, 2008, 12:17 PM
I think the problem with these sort of discussions is that people mix-up their points. Or say two points at the same time. Often one of the points is accurate but the others are not.
The Mac Pro is not over priced, it is very well priced for what it is. But if you want a mid range tower it is priced at a level more than you would be willing to pay. But that is because it is not a mid range tower and asking it to be a mid range tower is pointless, it just isn't.
I personally think that there should be a mid range tower. But just because there is not one, does not make the Mac Pro expensive.

I admit I used the wrong words 'overpriced behemoth' on the Mac Pro. I meant that it's the only (slightly overkill) option available for people who need a computer with higher performance than that of the highest end iMac, but not more than what the MP has.

My bad.

Sir Cecil
May 14, 2008, 12:20 PM
Apparently, the writer is proud of his open letter and expects us to applaud his insights.

Unfortunately, all I see is an ill-toned, over-simplistic, self-indulgent and long-winded message from someone who must have a lot of spare time on his hands.

Tilpots
May 14, 2008, 12:25 PM
I agree with the article. It's sort of like the 8 Hot Dogs in a pack, 10 Buns in a bag deal. Many people want the 8 Hot Dogs, but have zero use for 2 extra buns. Wierd comparison, but I hope you get what I'm saying.;)

As to the article's tone, if he's upset, let him vent. His message is not lost because of he's angry.

ditzy
May 14, 2008, 12:29 PM
I admit I used the wrong words 'overpriced behemoth' on the Mac Pro. I meant that it's the only (slightly overkill) option available for people who need a computer with higher performance than that of the highest end iMac, but not more than what the MP has.

My bad.

Fair enough. I also think there if a gap in the mac line. It's just that I think this without being critical of the existing products. (apart from maybe the mini)

ditzy
May 14, 2008, 12:35 PM
I agree with the article. It's sort of like the 8 Hot Dogs in a pack, 10 Buns in a bag deal. Many people want the 8 Hot Dogs, but have zero use for 2 extra buns. Wierd comparison, but I hope you get what I'm saying.;)

As to the article's tone, if he's upset, let him vent. His message is not lost because of he's angry.

You're right the message is not lost, but because of the tone of it, all the way through reading it I kept on having to remind myself that I agreed with most of it. Because of the tone he almost coverted me to thinking the oppersite that he wanted us to think. I don't think he has done his cause any good.

JNB
May 14, 2008, 12:45 PM
I agree with the article. It's sort of like the 8 Hot Dogs in a pack, 10 Buns in a bag deal. Many people want the 8 Hot Dogs, but have zero use for 2 extra buns. Wierd comparison, but I hope you get what I'm saying.;)

As to the article's tone, if he's upset, let him vent. His message is not lost because of he's angry.

And we all know how decades of complaining and derision about it have changed things. :p

Now I'm even more depressed about the chances for the "Mini Pro", "Headless", or "Midi" Macs.

Apple has great product differentiation, but does have some interesting spec gaps between the desktop lines. I'd love a Mini for my wife, but I don't see it as entirely suitable (pretty close, though). A new iMac is, well, a bit much for her. Give me a little more on the Mini, some expandability, and we can talk. Oh, and a free-standing iSight, while they're at it.

At the other end, I'd love the idea of a lower end Mac Pro. I was always a Mac/Power Mac guy, but when it went to the "Pro" designation, the specs & pricing jumped beyond anything I needed or could justify.

jeremy.king
May 14, 2008, 01:06 PM
Lame useless rant in my opinion.

The guy lost all credibility with his threats of continuing upgrading his Dual G4, a machine that cost an inflation adjusted $2K+ back in the day, plus whatever upgrades he has added. All he did is demonstrate that the quality and upgradability of the "Pro" line is worth the investment.

Apple hasn't had any trouble selling Macs, and frankly they haven't even offered a middle road desktop since the Performa line. This isn't a recent development by any means and ranting on your blog doesn't help much. I'm disappointed that I just padded the author's pocket with little ad revenue.

I just don't understand how people think they can dictate what a company should and shouldn't sell, especially a company with record revenue every quarter.

MM123
May 14, 2008, 01:09 PM
Do BMW and Mercedes lower their prices to increase market share? Like those luxury cars, when people see the Apple logo on your Mac they know you've spent money on it. The high price for these types of products, in itself, drives their demand as it adds a sense of exclusivity to it.

But Apple has more than just brand, it has superior design and a superior operating system. Hence, you're actually getting pretty good value for money!

Yes, they do not lower the price, but how would you call introduction of BMW 1 and Mercedes A some years ago? I would say, they just fill the gap in their production line. That's exactly what Apple should do. That's all.

inkswamp
May 14, 2008, 01:15 PM
I agree with the article. It's sort of like the 8 Hot Dogs in a pack, 10 Buns in a bag deal. Many people want the 8 Hot Dogs, but have zero use for 2 extra buns. Wierd comparison, but I hope you get what I'm saying.;)

I totally get it and I think it's one of the best analogies about this I've seen. You're either forced into buying too much or too little and neither option is satisfactory. Exactly right.

As to the article's tone, if he's upset, let him vent. His message is not lost because of he's angry.

Right. He's angry because Apple's shortsightedness is affecting his work. He's relied on them and they're letting him down. He might be feeling a little duped at this point. Who wouldn't be angry?

Hell, I'm angry about it. I've been using Macs for over 15 years and this is the first time Apple has nothing that I want to buy--and I've been ready to upgrade for nearly a year. The iMacs have awful displays. The Mini is underpowered and the Mac Pro is too much power and cost for me.

It's remarkable to me that anyone is actually surprised that people might be angry about this.

Consultant
May 14, 2008, 01:21 PM
People THINK they need certain things, but what exactly can't an iMac do?

Refurb iMac is just slightly over $1000, and it comes with a screen already, if you have another display, all you need is to hook up the extra display.

ceres
May 14, 2008, 01:26 PM
Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

Good luck and much fun building your machine.
Please get back to us with how it worked out. I am sure the scene will keep on fascilitating OS X Installation on PCs. Depending on how much of a mass effect this will create it might force Apple to open up its OS Strategy.

sine-nomine
May 14, 2008, 02:24 PM
The gap in Apple's lineup could probably be filled if they would offer a version of the Mac Pro that wasn't Xeon-based. You'd have more power and upgradeability than a Mini or an iMac, but at a lower price. Not everyone who needs more than a mobile processor needs a Xeon.

inkswamp
May 14, 2008, 03:34 PM
People THINK they need certain things, but what exactly can't an iMac do?

Are you kidding?

Tallest Skil
May 14, 2008, 03:37 PM
...what exactly can't an iMac do?

Easily upgrade a HDD, GPU, or CPU (not happening with Apple, but hey, it's possible on the Mac Pro...).

inkswamp
May 14, 2008, 03:41 PM
no chance for a expandable midrange mac ever........

Apple's other co-founder, Steve Jobs, didn't agree with Jef about many things, but they both felt the same way about hardware expandability: it was a bug instead of a feature. Steve was reportedly against having slots in the Apple II back in the days of yore, and felt even stronger about slots for the Mac. He decreed that the Macintosh would remain perpetually bereft of slots, enclosed in a tightly sealed case, with only the limited expandability of the two serial ports.

http://folklore.org/StoryView.py?story=Diagnostic_Port.txt

I'm certainly in no position to criticize Steve Jobs, but that's one of the most moronic things I've ever read. It's a little like saying the ability to change your car mats is a problem for a car buyer and that whatever car mats come with the car is good enough for everyone.

If we were all buying computers to do exactly the same tasks, then his view would make perfect sense, but everyone has different needs and people will always want to beef up some aspect of their computer to better suit the work they do on it. Being able to expand your hardware is something that has always been part of the computer-using experience and always will be.

And remember: at one time, Steve Jobs believed people only needed one mouse button. No matter how much some of you view him as a source of infallible wisdom, the fact is that sometimes he's wrong.

nick9191
May 14, 2008, 03:43 PM
I would be happy with the mini as it is, except in the style of the Time Capsule except bigger, and with a 3.5" desktop hard drive, and with a dedicated GPU. Even just a rubbish GPU so not to eat into iMac sales.

Say a 2.66 core 2 duo
2gb RAM
250gb hard drive
2400XT 128mb

Say $1199 (yes obviously it should be cheaper but taking into account Apple's pricing this is what they'd charge).

It would make so many people so happy.

ryannel2003
May 14, 2008, 03:47 PM
While I agree there should be some sort of affordable, expandable Mac, isn't it obvious that Jobs would have introduced one by now if he really wanted one? I'm one of those people who don't use any major Pro apps (Aperture on a rare occasion) and the iMac fits my lifestyle of computer usage perfectly. Maybe people would quiet down if Apple introduced a $1500 Mac Pro model. Even though, I've seen some refurbs going for $1700 on the Apple Store website.

When I think about it, Apple had a more affordable PowerMac G5 about 3 years back for $1699 and it wasn't a great seller, so that could be another hindering factor in releasing a "cheap" tower.

crontab
May 14, 2008, 03:48 PM
All he did is demonstrate that the quality and upgradability of the "Pro" line is worth the investment.


That is exactly what I took away from the read. He NEEDS to go ahead and purchase the Mac Pro and stop whining about the cost. Look at the ROI on the G4 Pro already - slam dunk when it comes to making the decision.

Grimace
May 14, 2008, 03:51 PM
Despite the fact that some people would like this, it is not the kind of market to which Apple wants to cater. Apple wants an all-in-one solution for home/work prosumers (iMac) - not something grossly expandable. It needs to be something that has few options: more control = it just works!

I know, I know -- but LIKE, EVERYONE would buy one! That isn't the point. Apple creates its own customers by the types of products that are churned out. Apple doesn't want the casual do-it-yourself user. Sorry! :o

Cheffy Dave
May 14, 2008, 03:57 PM
Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

Go with 3/4 -10,000 RPM WD Raptors,( I know,I know $$$$$ ), tie em to that processor, and Good kick ass OCZ RAM, you be smokin:eek:

I OC'd my AMD 3700 single core to 3.0, coupled it to premium OCZ RAM and 2 WD Raptors, and booted XP Pro in under 13 seconds. A 10,000 RPM H.D.D. will do as much as the fastest Processor to give you the speeds you seek:D

Now you got me scheming about doing my own "hackintosh"

inkswamp
May 14, 2008, 04:00 PM
Even though when I think about it, Apple had a more affordable PowerMac G5 about 3 years back for $1699 and it wasn't a great seller, so that could be another hindering factor in releasing a "cheap" tower.

$1699 is not affordable for most people, especially when the machine in question doesn't ship with a display. That's going to put most people over $2000.

Apple could very easily package the current components in one of the mid-range iMacs into a Mini-like case (bigger, of course, but something along those lines) and sell it for ~$1000. The additional $500-600 for a decent display puts it into the realm of being a reasonably powerful and affordable machine. This is a no-brainer. The only reason I can think that Apple hasn't done it is because of some underlying philosophical design b*****t that doesn't wash with most of the users out there, including me.

There is a point where Apple must find a balance between their computer-as-a-beautiful-piece-of-art aesthetic and the computer-as-a-tool demand from a majority of the buyers. That Apple refuses to give even an iota on that is frustrating.

ryannel2003
May 14, 2008, 04:04 PM
$1699 is not affordable for most people, especially when the machine in question doesn't ship with a display. That's going to put most people over $2000.

Apple could very easily package the current components in one of the mid-range iMacs into a Mini-like case (bigger, of course, but something along those lines) and sell it for ~$1000. The additional $500-600 for a decent display puts it into the realm of being a reasonably powerful and affordable machine. This is a no-brainer. The only reason I can think that Apple hasn't done it is because of some underlying philosophical design b*****t that doesn't wash with most of the users out there, including me.

There is a point where Apple must find a balance between their computer-as-a-beautiful-piece-of-art aesthetic and the computer-as-a-tool demand from a majority of the buyers. That Apple refuses to give even an iota on that is frustrating.

I completely agree with everything you've said, but Apple is extremely stubborn when it comes to designing computers for the public, not themselves.

asme
May 14, 2008, 04:10 PM
The writer is a cock.

I'd sign a similar open letter if it weren't written like such a smarmy-ass hipster demand.

I mean, he first gives the concept, which is OK. But then demand exactly what specs it should have? Come on.

He sounds very pissed when he's writing, but if you get annoyed about these computer-y sorts of things, then you really need a life.

inkswamp
May 14, 2008, 04:40 PM
He sounds very pissed when he's writing, but if you get annoyed about these computer-y sorts of things, then you really need a life.

For some people, their livelihood depends on their computers. I don't begrudge anyone for getting a little miffed about their needs as a user/business person being trumped repeatedly by Apple's needs to produce the prettiest computers. Apple doesn't appear interested in budging on that even a little. Put yourself in that guy's shoes for a minute. You've invested money in a particular platform and the platform's hardware options have grown more restrictive and more expensive. You don't think even a little anger is justified?

And anyway, this is really an ad hominem thing, isn't it? The issue is Apple's lack of choice for its users, not this guy being angry. Seriously, do you think saying...

The writer is a cock.

... is justified for strongly expressing his annoyance with the state of Apple's hardware?

Macky-Mac
May 14, 2008, 05:16 PM
Alas, Apples' current product line seems to be bringing in piles of profits so they don't have a lot of incentive to try to sell something to meet the needs of any and every user no matter what

being angry about the fact that a company doesn't make a product you want seems like a pointless waste of energy

feakbeak
May 14, 2008, 05:16 PM
I'll admit the author's tone didn't help and while he has some good points I don't think he made an overly strong argument for a mid-range Mac desktop machine.

However, I, as well as many others have wished for such a product from Apple for some time.

Here is a short list of what I'm looking for and I think most others who wish for a mid-range Mac would agree.

1. Desktop Core 2 Duo CPU - not a mobile part, not a Xeon, an actual desktop CPU for a desktop computer.
2. Some expandability, what the average PC case provides. Room for another hard drive or two, 2-3 PCI slots a mobo with 3-4 slots for RAM.
3. This ties into #2 but is significant enough to stand as a point on it's own - the ability to put in a true graphics card and upgrade it.
4. No built-in display like the iMac. Some of us find all-in-one designs limiting. Don't get me wrong, I really like the iMac design, it looks great and for some users and situations it's perfect. However, the iMac is the only moderately powerful desktop Mac offered by Apple and it's not a one-size-fits-all solution.

The Mac Pro meets most of these requirements but the problem is that it exceeds them, it's overkill. I don't want an eight-core system, even if I downgrade to a single four-core CPU, it's still a Xeon - I don't need, nor do I want, a server chip. ECC RAM, this is a big one - it inflates the cost of RAM significantly and for my needs it's completely unnecessary. The case is huge, it's just way too big.

So while I want a moderately powerful desktop Mac, with some expandability and a separate display the Mac Pro really is not the computer I'm looking for.

Although I think it would be best to distinguish a mid-range desktop Mac from the Mac Pro, I think the name "Mac" would work perfectly, I would be content if Apple just allowed you strip down some more features of the Mac Pro.

Offering a desktop Core 2 Duo chip options with non-ECC RAM for a little under $2000 would probably be enough to get me to bite but I'd really prefer a smaller case.

The truth is Apple has a gap in their product line in the eyes of many computer users. As a consumer, you either buy a laptop or a gimmicky desktop (iMac/Mac Mini) that have issues with power (mobile-part-based) and expandability. Your only other option to avoid these shortcomings is to buy a workstation/server class machine.

Anyone on these forums who asks for just a little more power or expandability from the laptops/iMac/Mac Mini is told they should buy a Mac Pro. When they complain about the price, stating that a server/workstation machine is overkill for what they want, they are given stupid car analogies and told that because it's "Apple" they should have to pay out the nose. It's a ridiculous stance to take. There is clearly room in Apple's product line to offer a product that fills this gap. I believe there would also be a sustainable market for such a product.

Neutral Gamer
May 14, 2008, 06:37 PM
Yes, they do not lower the price, but how would you call introduction of BMW 1 and Mercedes A some years ago? I would say, they just fill the gap in their production line. That's exactly what Apple should do. That's all.

The BMW 1 Series and Mercedes A Class are still more expensive than similar range models from their competitors. They introduced new models into their range BUT still kept those products' prices high to keep that image of exclusivity and luxury.

And I agree with you 100% that that's what Apple should do, simply fill in the gap in their product range. :)

At the same time they can keep the prices for these new products relatively higher than PC equivalents because of the Apple brand, design and OS as I mentioned earlier.

GoCubsGo
May 14, 2008, 06:54 PM
Yeah, I caved in and bought the mac pro last weekend and filled it up with ram and HD and 8800GT. I figured screw it, I have the money. Still pissed about it though. WOuld have much rather had a 4 core smaller box for half the price.

Well I'm not pissed about spending the money but I did what you did. I probably don't have the HD space or ram you have (only just received my additional 4gb), but I'm quite pleased. Sure, if a mac mini pro existed then yeah, I'd go that route, but I love this power whilst using Aperture...it ran like a dog on my G4 Powerbook.

Tilpots
May 14, 2008, 07:59 PM
I'd love a Mini for my wife, but I don't see it as entirely suitable (pretty close, though).


Great line. I'm totally taking this out of context, and I mean no offense, but talk about a computer that wouldn't meet your "needs?":D

Back on topic... Nice letter, evil letter, happy letter, angry letter; it doesn't matter. How many rants have you seen on these boards? How much ass kissing have you seen on these boards? Apple's gonna do what Apple's gonna do.

feakbeak
May 15, 2008, 01:52 AM
I'm typing this on a new 24" iMac, top of the line. Doesn't fate just like to bite you in the rear!

My fiancee and I had been considering getting an iMac as an additional computer, we both have PCs currently. Hers was aging though and instead of replacing her PC with another and getting the 20" iMac to have since like OS X she just decided to get a nicer iMac and make it her primary machine and dual-boot Windows on it.

We went to "look" at the iMacs again tonight and she decided it was time to bite, so here I am a few hours after posting complaints about Apple not offering a standard desktop product, typing on a new iMac. /sigh :)

I've always been reluctant to get an iMac as a primary machine due to the limitations so we'll see how this experiment goes, if it doesn't work out in the long run due to expandability or something we can always fall back to the old plan of building her a new PC and letting the iMac be whatever it is - which for us is mostly a way to use OS X.

DHart
May 15, 2008, 06:21 AM
The displays in the current iMacs keep me from replacing the four white 20" CoreDuo iMacs in my studio, which have SUPERB displays. Current iMac displays suck (glossy surface, far too high incidence of gradient/bleed problems, TN drawbacks in the 20")! And as long as the iMac displays suck, I am waiting for a super-mini (if not a mini Pro). Even a mini which is configured like the 2.8 GHz iMac would be a wonderful mid-range offering. I'd PAY $1500 for a reasonably powerful Mac mini!!!!!

The MacPro is WAY more than I want - especially in price

The iMacs displays are too compromised for graphics pros.

The current mini is too anemic.

What we really, really need is a headless compadre to the iMac line.

A 2.8 GHz C2D, 4 GB RAM capability, decent graphics card. Then many if us can buy the Cinema Display (or other *quality* display) that we desire and work as we need to without having to go far overboard with the MacPro.

Certainly, some graphics professionals do need a MacPro and will buy them... but many other graphics professionals simply don't NEED a Mac Pro and won't buy one. SO why try to force ALL graphics professionals into mega computing options and sky high pricing when many of us simply don't need that and won't buy it?

YES!!! I'd pay $1500 for a headless 2.8 GHz Mini that has a decent graphics card and 4 GB RAM capability... but I won't pay uber dollars for the MacPro.

inkswamp
May 15, 2008, 02:49 PM
I'd PAY $1500 for a reasonably powerful Mac mini!!!!!
[...]
YES!!! I'd pay $1500 for a headless 2.8 GHz Mini that has a decent graphics card and 4 GB RAM capability... but I won't pay uber dollars for the MacPro.

Same here. I think a lot of people who are against this idea assume people like you and me want this mythical headless machine at the same price points as the Mini. I don't, nor would I ever expect that. I think Apple could really knock one out of the park with a $999 headless model similar to what you describe and maybe another priced at $1500 with a faster processor, better GPU, etc.

I'm not against paying extra for Apple's quality. I never have been. I just want a little more choice and flexibility with it. I don't like having to choose a machine based on whatever drawback I can live with, and all of Apple's desktops have major drawbacks right now.

DHart
May 15, 2008, 02:58 PM
Same here. I think a lot of people who are against this idea assume people like you and me want this mythical headless machine at the same price points as the Mini. I don't, nor would I ever expect that. I think Apple could really knock one out of the park with a $999 headless model similar to what you describe and maybe another priced at $1500 with a faster processor, better GPU, etc.

I'm not against paying extra for Apple's quality. I never have been. I just want a little more choice and flexibility with it. I don't like having to choose a machine based on whatever drawback I can live with, and all of Apple's desktops have major drawbacks right now.

Agree totally... most of us would gladly and eagerly pay a higher price for a premium mac mini... I agree that Apple would probably sell them by the boatload. Two tiers would be great at 999 and 1499. PLEASE, APPLE, DO THIS!!!

As for making the mini even smaller? Totally wasted effort... we don't need a smaller mini, we need a more capable mini! A smaller mini would be about as useful as a thinner iMac.... puhleeze! Why compromise potency, utility, effectiveness, screen display quality just to have an even smaller or thinner form factor.... that's chasing after the wrong goal for most of us.

lamina
May 15, 2008, 03:06 PM
If we don't tell Apple what we want then how will they know we want it? ;)
http://www.apple.com/feedback/

"If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse."
- Henry Ford

Apple is not a company that needs to listen to its customers. Well, to a certain degree they do, but they are very much a company who tells their customers what they want.

inkswamp
May 15, 2008, 03:15 PM
"If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they would have said a faster horse."
- Henry Ford

Apple is not a company that needs to listen to its customers. Well, to a certain degree they do, but they are very much a company who tells their customers what they want.

The problem is that Apple is may be doing something better than the "faster horse," but all those things have serious shortcomings and Apple doesn't appear interested in addressing them.

See, it goes both ways. To some extent, customers need to sit back and not demand the "faster horse," trusting that whatever is coming is going to outdo that. However, there are some times when the business should be smart enough to listen to its customers and cater to those needs.

MM123
May 15, 2008, 03:24 PM
The displays in the current iMacs keep me from replacing the four white 20" CoreDuo iMacs in my studio, which have SUPERB displays. Current iMac displays suck (glossy surface, far too high incidence of gradient/bleed problems, TN drawbacks in the 20")! And as long as the iMac displays suck, I am waiting for a super-mini (if not a mini Pro). Even a mini which is configured like the 2.8 GHz iMac would be a wonderful mid-range offering. I'd PAY $1500 for a reasonably powerful Mac mini!!!!!

The MacPro is WAY more than I want - especially in price

The iMacs displays are too compromised for graphics pros.

The current mini is too anemic.

What we really, really need is a headless compadre to the iMac line.

A 2.8 GHz C2D, 4 GB RAM capability, decent graphics card. Then many if us can buy the Cinema Display (or other *quality* display) that we desire and work as we need to without having to go far overboard with the MacPro.

Certainly, some graphics professionals do need a MacPro and will buy them... but many other graphics professionals simply don't NEED a Mac Pro and won't buy one. SO why try to force ALL graphics professionals into mega computing options and sky high pricing when many of us simply don't need that and won't buy it?

YES!!! I'd pay $1500 for a headless 2.8 GHz Mini that has a decent graphics card and 4 GB RAM capability... but I won't pay uber dollars for the MacPro.

Same for me 100%, unfortunately I'm sceptic, it's a long way to Cupertino from here ... :D

DHart
May 15, 2008, 04:16 PM
Well... considering that Apple is known to be completely revamping the mini, I think there's a reasonable chance that the revamped mini may actually pack a decent punch... I'm sure hoping for that, anyway.

I don't care about more hard drive capacity or slots for cards... just a current/speedy C2D processor (2.6 or 2.8 GHz), at least X3100 graphics, DVI output, super drive and 4 GB RAM capacity will make me very happy... and I think that's a fairly predictable/likely configuration for the new mini.

I think it's a pretty safe bet that the revamped mini will have at least what the current MacBook has:

• 2.4 GHz C2D
• GMA X3100 graphics
• 4 GB RAM capacity
• SuperDrive
• 160 GB 5400RPM Hard Drive

and that would be good and I'll buy a couple of them. If they go farther than that... GREAT, I'll buy two or three!

Dustman
May 15, 2008, 04:33 PM
Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

I also gave up and switched back to Windows. With Vista, Windows still sucks but at least they made it look a little better. I got an inspiron 530 desktop and the only regret i have is that it doesn't run OS X. I COULD hack OS X onto it, but Vista doesn't bug me THAT much, its just far less elegent and intuitive.

DHart
May 15, 2008, 04:43 PM
I also gave up and switched back to Windows. With Vista, Windows still sucks but at least they made it look a little better. I got an inspiron 530 desktop and the only regret i have is that it doesn't run OS X. I COULD hack OS X onto it, but Vista doesn't bug me THAT much, its just far less elegent and intuitive.

Nothing about the current offerings or lack of offerings of Apple Macs would make me even dream of switching over to Windoze. The Macintosh hardware/OS combination, even lacking a mid-level headless mac, is just so superior.

phalewhale
May 15, 2008, 06:53 PM
Whining for them to offer a product is just sad.

I actually think that is a sad statement. But I'm not wanting to pick a fight.

Feedback should be welcomed - by any company. Whilst I agree with the underlying message of the TS, I do think it could be put together in a more professional way.

Maybe those interested could agree on a standard template that we could post on here, then copy and paste into the "comments" field on the feedback form at http://www.apple.com/feedback/macpro.html

Just another thought... Unless it could be posted in some better place?

Jack Flash
May 15, 2008, 07:43 PM
I think a lot of people over estimate their computing needs.

Cave Man
May 15, 2008, 08:47 PM
I think a lot of people over estimate their computing needs.

I think that's a highly presumptuous statement.

CWallace
May 15, 2008, 09:09 PM
Do BMW and Mercedes lower their prices to increase market share?

Yes they do, but they do it via smaller, de-contented models.

The Mercedes 190 Series in the 1980's and the new BMW 1-Series are both examples of this. They are not cheap, but neither are they nearly as expensive as their bigger brothers (E Class, 5 Series, etc.).

The Mac Mini is Apple's 190/1-Series. It's smaller then the iMac. It has less performance and content. And it isn't cheap, but it is cheaper then an iMac or Mac Pro.

Jack Flash
May 15, 2008, 10:19 PM
I think that's a highly presumptuous statement.

I think you're wrong.

whtrabit
May 16, 2008, 12:02 AM
I would just like to see an updated Mac Mini. Why not a single quad chip and up to 4GB of RAM? 500GB HDD? :eek:

eXan
May 16, 2008, 12:02 AM
This "open letter" is nothing more than a rant of a guy who wants everything for nothing. Thats NOT the way to write this kind of letters :rolleyes: Reading it I got more and more convinced in his incompetence. Just some angry guy who doesnt want to pay for his tools.

Those who want that 1500$ headless iMac (or Mac mini Pro) are missing the point.

Apple HAS offered a single-CPU Power Mac G5 at 1500$, a single-CPU Power Mac G4 for 1500$ before that, etc. Nobody bought them. Thats the only explanation to their short lives.

I remember everybody complained about the G5 that it was just the iMac without a display in a Power Mac case, for the same price as the iMac. Sure it had the same CPU, GPU, FSB and RAM as iMac, but it offered something a lot of people on this forum praying Apple for - expandability. It had 4 PCI slots, 4 RAM slots, 2 HD slots and it had no display. So why nobody bought it?

Apple realized their mistake of making such machine and never sold it since. Instead, they are now giving an option to get a single-CPU Mac Pro for just a little over 24" iMacs, which is fair price considering how MUCH you get with a Mac Pro! And it appears to be selling well, because most people I meet buy this 4 core Mac Pro, instead of standard-configuration 8 core.

People whine because they dont know what they need from a computer or just because they dont want to pay the (reasonable) price for 4 core Mac Pro.

I would just like to see an updated Mac Mini. Why not a single quad chip and up to 4GB of RAM? 500GB HDD? :eek:

Because there are no 4 core mobile CPUs available yet. And 500 GB 2.5" HDs cost more than Mac mini itself.

Goldenbear
May 16, 2008, 01:21 AM
I think a lot of people over estimate their computing needs.

I totally agree!

...Those who want that 1500$ headless iMac (or Mac mini Pro) are missing the point.

Apple HAS offered a single-CPU Power Mac G5 at 1500$, a single-CPU Power Mac G4 for 1500$ before that, etc. Nobody bought them. Thats the only explanation to their short lives...

But I think you're missing the point that not everyone wanting a headless iMac wants one in the humongous Mac Pro enclosure. Yes, the so-called "graphics pros" want PCI Express slots and what-not. Well, there are a lot of us who don't necessarily want all that. We just want a fast CPU + fast GPU without an attached display.

And really, that highlights one possible reason Apple hasn't addressed this issue yet... we the customers can't even agree on what we want! :o

Apple certainly isn't going to pump out fifty different models to suit everyone's whim.

DHart
May 16, 2008, 01:57 AM
Those who want that 1500$ headless iMac (or Mac mini Pro) are missing the point.

People whine because they dont know what they need from a computer or just because they dont want to pay the (reasonable) price for 4 core Mac Pro.

Headless computers make a LOT of sense for a LOT of people, especially people with special needs (graphics people, gamers, etc.) and those who don't want a cheap TN panel (20" iMac) or struggle with glossy screen surfaces and the great likelihood of gradient issues and light leaks (24" iMacs) and possible multiple returns/exchanges/headaches!

If the 24" iMacs had the option of matte screens and were for the most part free of gradients and light leaks, there would be less of a case for headless Macs between the mini and the Pro. But the fact has been for some time and continues today with the current models that displays on the iMacs involve a lot more compromise than screens on iMacs once had. Some of us want the mid range iMac performance capability without having to suffer the attendant display issues associated with today's iMacs. Hence the current emphasis on a mid range "headless" Mac.

In the Mac "headless" lineup there is a HUGE price AND performance gap between:

• $800 Mini w/2.0 GHz C2D/GMA 950

and a

• $2300 MacPro w/2.8 GHz Quad Core/Radeon 2600XT

And simply because some don't find the appeal to something in the middle of that range doesn't mean there aren't a HECK of a lot of people who DO have a need and desire for an option somewhere between those two extremes.

I, FOR ONE, would put my money down IMMEDIATELY for a $1500 Mac Mini that fell somewhere in the middle of those extremes in price and performance. I don't want nor need a lot of expandability nor internal bays... but I DO want a reasonably fast C2D chip (let's say 2.4 to 2.6 GHz) and the ability to cherry pick the head (display) that meets my needs perfectly without having to spend $2300+ for the body.

A middle point (let's call it a "SuperMini") makes a LOT of sense to a GREAT many people, even if some don't "get" the point. Such an option doesn't require another line of computers... all it calls for is two variants of the mini: one with enhanced level iMac internals and a version with entry level performance. Now they would still have three lines: Mac Pro, iMac, and SuperMini/Mini.

I believe that we're going to have something of a "Super Mini" when the newly reworked mini debuts... even if it's two performance options essentially mirror the high end and low end MacBook. Intel is pushing the chips to the point where the mini will have the "mid-level" performance many of us want so very much.

eXan
May 16, 2008, 02:02 AM
Headless computers make a LOT of sense for a LOT of people, especially people with special needs (graphics people, gamers, etc.)

And simply because you don't see a need for a price/power point somewhere between a:

$800 Mini w/2.0 GHz C2D/GMA 950

and a

$2300 MacPro w/2.8 GHz Quad Core/Radeon 2600XT

doesn't mean there aren't a HECK of a lot of people who DO have a need and desire for an option somewhere between those two extremes. I, FOR ONE, would put my money down IMMEDIATELY for a $1500 Mac Mini that fell somewhere in the middle (like $1550) of those extremes in price and performance. I don't want nor need a lot of expandability nor internal bays... but I DO want the ability to cherry pick the head (display) that meets my needs perfectly without having to spend $2300+ for the body. A middle point makes a lot of sense to a great many people, even if you don't particularly like the idea.

Apple was selling 1500$ towers, but not for long. They were just NOT selling well. Sorry, you're in the minority.

inkswamp
May 16, 2008, 02:09 AM
In the Mac "headless" lineup there is a huge gap between:

$800 Mini w/2.0 GHz C2D/GMA 950

and a

$2300 MacPro w/2.8 GHz Quad Core/Radeon 2600XT

And simply because some don't find the appeal to something in the middle of that range doesn't mean there aren't a HECK of a lot of people who DO have a need and desire for an option somewhere between those two extremes.

Exactly. Why is it so difficult for so many people on this particular forum to fathom this? I get the sense that there is a knee-jerk defensiveness to any criticism of Apple. What's really amusing to me is that a lot of people reflexively writing off the need for this machine would be back on these forums the day after its release talking about what a brilliant move it was for Apple to release it and how amazing the computer is.

Apple was selling 1500$ towers, but not for long. They were just NOT selling well. Sorry, you're in the minority.

I'm not sure how $1500 became the de facto price for this machine, but what most of us are talking about is a range of machines between $800 and $1500. The problem with Apple making a low-end version of their Mac Pros (or PowerMacs in the past) is that people looking to buy those generally aren't looking at the low-end. Those machines were marketed to power users and pros who want the biggest and the best. What we're talking about is a mid-range headless machine, not a low-end Mac Pro. IMO, that would sell.

Another factor to consider too is that the $1500 tower you're talking about was available at a time before OS X and Macs had grabbed such widespread attention. There are a lot more people looking to buy Macs now than then. And a lot of them wonder why Apple doesn't offer a headless machine at that price.

Seriously, go looking around at other forums on the Web, forums not so Mac-biased as MacRumors. You'll see a lot of chatter out there. People want Apple to make this machine.

eXan
May 16, 2008, 02:44 AM
Exactly. Why is it so difficult for so many people on this particular forum to fathom this? I get the sense that there is a knee-jerk defensiveness to any criticism of Apple. What's really amusing to me is that a lot of people reflexively writing off the need for this machine would be back on these forums the day after its release talking about what a brilliant move it was for Apple to release it and how amazing the computer is.



I'm not sure how $1500 became the de facto price for this machine, but what most of us are talking about is a range of machines between $800 and $1500. The problem with Apple making a low-end version of their Mac Pros (or PowerMacs in the past) is that people looking to buy those generally aren't looking at the low-end. Those machines were marketed to power users and pros who want the biggest and the best. What we're talking about is a mid-range headless machine, not a low-end Mac Pro. IMO, that would sell.

Another factor to consider too is that the $1500 tower you're talking about was available at a time before OS X and Macs had grabbed such widespread attention. There are a lot more people looking to buy Macs now than then. And a lot of them wonder why Apple doesn't offer a headless machine at that price.

Seriously, go looking around at other forums on the Web, forums not so Mac-biased as MacRumors. You'll see a lot of chatter out there. People want Apple to make this machine.

I'm sure some people want it, the entire MacRumors forum is filled with them. And yes, Apple has more market share than in 2004. Its all true. :)

But Macs aren't for everybody! Apple's move to introduce the single-CPU Mac Pro is a clear sign that they aren't making the modest Mac tower. I'm actually surprised they are offering it, but it turned out to be a really good machine.

As its has been said earlier in this thread, Apple doesn't want "I'll make it myself" kind of customers - people who build their own PCs, or upgrade them from inside-out. Its just not the target market of Apple. And those who dont like the display, should either get a Mac Pro if they REALLY need a good display and cant stand the glossy screen of 24" iMac, or reevaluate their need for "good display" because those cost a lot of money, and if you can't afford it do you really NEED it?

DHart
May 16, 2008, 03:08 AM
Apple was selling 1500$ towers, but not for long. They were just NOT selling well. Sorry, you're in the minority.

That was a time and place and state of computing and hardware availability that differs considerably from today. I don't agree with your point at all. And as for being in the minority.... so are Mac Pro buyers. And so are Mac mini buyers... do you propose dropping all lines but MacBooks and iMacs?

As its has been said earlier in this thread, Apple doesn't want "I'll make it myself" kind of customers - people who build their own PCs, or upgrade them from inside-out. Its just not the target market of Apple.

Not valid either... Pro and mini buyers are required to make plenty of choices to make to customize and round out their systems.


And those who dont like the display, should either get a Mac Pro if they REALLY need a good display and cant stand the glossy screen of 24" iMac, or reevaluate their need for "good display" because those cost a lot of money, and if you can't afford it do you really NEED it?

You're telling us that we should do this because you say so? Alrighty then! ;-) Rediculous.

I'm a professional photographer and studio owner. I don't create games or do video editing on my computers. I use Photoshop and various other graphics and general use programs all day long. On multiple machines. I DON'T need MacPros to do this. But I DO need very good, even, accurate displays!!! This can be done for a LOT less than even the cheapest MacPro.

I have paired a MacBook 2.2 GHz with 4 GB of RAM and (upgraded) a 250 MB Hitachi internal hard drive with an HP LP2465 display (24" wide screen with S-PVA panel technology) and have a great mid-power set-up for around $1900. It's really versatile too because the brain doubles as a laptop when I'm away from the desk.

If the MacBook were switched out for an upcoming MINI model with 2.4 GHz or 2.6 GHz C2D with 4 GB of RAM selling for, perhaps $1000, it would be even faster and probably run around $1600 TOTAL. This particular monitor, a $600 S-PVA HP 24" display, is a superb graphics monitor with accurate colors, matte screen surface, no brightness gradient, no light leakage of any consequence at all, and a nice wide viewing angle.

TO pair this HP display with the least expensive MacPro would run $2900. Let's see how happy you would be having to write a check for four of those $2900 systems vs. four $1600 systems which perform quite well for a lot less money! ($5200 savings!) If you don't need all the expansion slots and customization capability as the Pro offers, then a mid-line, good performance MINI paired with a good monitor can provide superb professional service for MUCH less money. And I know there are a LOT of us who want that! (And in another month or so, I think we're going to GET that MINI!!!)

Please don't presume to tell me what I need or don't need to buy or spend to get what I need. I know what I need and what it can be had for.

A Mac Pro and Cinema Display is a great but very expensive and often unnecessary option for many graphics professionals, but there are other very nice Macintosh options to be had which are nearly as effective for professional graphics work for a lot less money.

If you had to buy four $2900 MacPro workstations vs. four $1600 MacMini workstations for photoshop editing in your portrait photography studio, you would understand all of this quite readily! Your perspective is limited.

http://www.legendportraits.com/Misc_Images/Workstation.jpg

jodelli
May 16, 2008, 03:21 AM
Apple doesn't offer a consumer desktop; the Mini is a headless Mac Book.

It can work, but I don't have to like it even though I have owned just over two dozen Macs in my lifetime.

DHart
May 16, 2008, 03:42 AM
Apple doesn't offer a consumer desktop; the Mini is a headless Mac Book.

It can work, but I don't have to like it even though I have owned just over two dozen Macs in my lifetime.

jodelli... the next total revamp of the MacBook should be here by Fall (with, perhaps 2.6 GHz C2D processor) and the totally reworked Mini (with 2.4 GHz or perhaps 2.6 GHz C2D) should be here in a month or two. I think either of those machines coupled with a great external monitor will be the mid-line set-up that a lot of us are eager to have.

None of the Apple offerings are exactly what any of us would find to be perfect. But since my first Mac which I bought in 1986, I too have had quite a few Macs and loved them all, all along the way! I'm happier now with my Macs than I've ever been with Macs... and when the revamped Mini arrives, I think I'm going to love that machine too. I'm amazed with what great performance I'm getting from the humble 2.2 GHz MacBook as a graphics workstation. Things Apple just keep getting better and better!

eXan
May 16, 2008, 05:17 AM
Not valid either... Pro and mini buyers are required to make plenty of choices to make to customize and round out their systems.

People who buy Macs are usually buy them not to worry about hardware part of their Macs, unlike those "I'll make it myself" people who search tons of shops, sales to find the component they like to put into their "Lego"-PC, browsing loads of sites in cearch for drivers, compatibility guides/tricks, etc. Mac users don't do that. In fact, a lot of Mac users switch to Macs because they are fed up with all this headache and want their machine to "just work".

You're telling us that we should do this because you say so? Alrighty then! ;-) Rediculous.

Not because I say so, but because you have no other choice.

I'm a professional photographer and studio owner. I don't create games or do video editing on my computers. I use Photoshop and various other graphics and general use programs all day long. On multiple machines. I DON'T need MacPros to do this. But I DO need very good, even, accurate displays!!! This can be done for a LOT less than even the cheapest MacPro.

I have paired a MacBook 2.2 GHz with 4 GB of RAM and (upgraded) a 250 MB Hitachi internal hard drive with an HP LP2465 display (24" wide screen with S-PVA panel technology) and have a great mid-power set-up for around $1900. It's really versatile too because the brain doubles as a laptop when I'm away from the desk.

If the MacBook were switched out for an upcoming MINI model with 2.4 GHz or 2.6 GHz C2D with 4 GB of RAM selling for, perhaps $1000, it would be even faster and probably run around $1600 TOTAL. This particular monitor, a $600 S-PVA HP 24" display, is a superb graphics monitor with accurate colors, matte screen surface, no brightness gradient, no light leakage of any consequence at all, and a nice wide viewing angle.

TO pair this HP display with the least expensive MacPro would run $2900. Let's see how happy you would be having to write a check for four of those $2900 systems vs. four $1600 systems which perform quite well for a lot less money! ($5200 savings!) If you don't need all the expansion slots and customization capability as the Pro offers, then a mid-line, good performance MINI paired with a good monitor can provide superb professional service for MUCH less money. And I know there are a LOT of us who want that! (And in another month or so, I think we're going to GET that MINI!!!)

Please don't presume to tell me what I need or don't need to buy or spend to get what I need. I know what I need and what it can be had for.

A Mac Pro and Cinema Display is a great but very expensive and often unnecessary option for many graphics professionals, but there are other very nice Macintosh options to be had which are nearly as effective for professional graphics work for a lot less money.

If you had to buy four $2900 MacPro workstations vs. four $1600 MacMini workstations for photoshop editing in your portrait photography studio, you would understand all of this quite readily! Your perspective is limited.

You basically want a Mac mini refresh, not a separate line of Mac towers. I can't argue with this - they really should refresh mini's.

But you also know that even a 4 core Mac Pro would last a LOT longer for that type of work than any other Mac - also a factor to consider when shelling out for (multiple) work systems.

You can whine here all you want, but this won't grab Apple's attention, so better go and send feedback to them.

TBi
May 16, 2008, 06:27 AM
You basically want a Mac mini refresh, not a separate line of Mac towers. I can't argue with this - they really should refresh mini's.

Maybe a mini with a Quad core CPU, discrete GPU and 3.5" drive. Now that would be a nice machine.

I quite frankly wouldn't care if the graphics card was low height PCI or MXM as long as it was discrete and you had a choice.

The machine might end up the same size as the original Cube but it would be a heck of a lot faster than the mini as it is now.

Jack Flash
May 16, 2008, 01:03 PM
Maybe a mini with a Quad core CPU, discrete GPU and 3.5" drive. Now that would be a nice machine.

I quite frankly wouldn't care if the graphics card was low height PCI or MXM as long as it was discrete and you had a choice.

The machine might end up the same size as the original Cube but it would be a heck of a lot faster than the mini as it is now.

For photo editing, though, you don't need a discreet GPU, which is what most of the complaint is over; people want to use their own monitor for editing photos.

TBi
May 16, 2008, 02:13 PM
For photo editing, though, you don't need a discreet GPU, which is what most of the complaint is over; people want to use their own monitor for editing photos.

Maybe not... but i want one :D

DHart
May 16, 2008, 02:25 PM
You basically want a Mac mini refresh, not a separate line of Mac towers. I can't argue with this - they really should refresh mini's.

But you also know that even a 4 core Mac Pro would last a LOT longer for that type of work than any other Mac - also a factor to consider when shelling out for (multiple) work systems.

You can whine here all you want, but this won't grab Apple's attention, so better go and send feedback to them.

Yes, you're right... I don't see a need for a separate line of towers... when it comes to towers, the MacPro line is fine.

And yes, I DO want a mini refresh because I think that can fill the huge gap that currently exists in the lineup. It would fit perfectly with my portrait studio needs and budget coupled with the $600 HP LP2465 monitors.

I do believe that we'll see a nice NEW MINI in another month or so. And I'm so hoping that it will have an upper end option which hits at least 2.4 GHz with an XMA3100 graphics chip and 4 GB RAM capacity (current MacBook specs). I couldn't care less how big the internal hard drive is (well... as long as it's at least 120 GB).

pcorajr
May 16, 2008, 02:47 PM
I agree with this guy, I am still a new mac user, I purchased my first mac back in August when the new Alum iMac. My Beef with the iMac is expandability and price, so far the computer has lived up to the expectations but i would rather have a tower so i could upgrade monitor. I have a 24 inch monitor i share with my PS3 and Mac currently.

Apple needs to fill in the big gap they have between the mac mini and the mac pro. And please don't tell me thats what the iMac is.

QCassidy352
May 16, 2008, 02:48 PM
I don't like the tone of the article. The language is very aggressive and pointed. Not a good way to win someone over to your way of thinking. He should have let the facts speak for themselves without embellishment.

I agree.

Additionally, he is only thinking about it from the consumer's point of view, not from Apple's. If apple sells you a mac pro, you'll keep it for years, but you've made a big investment, and they've made a big profit. If they sell you an imac or mini, it's a much lower margin, but you'll replace it a lot sooner.

If they sell you a cheap, upgradable desktop? They have a small margin and you upgrade it for years, giving your money to third party vendors. See why Apple isn't crazy about that idea?

Yes, many customers would prefer the "mac pro mini" or "mac mini pro" or whatever. But, unlike this guy, most will eventually give in and buy one of apple's current offerings

Moreover, he's missed out on the best option for his situation - a mac pro with only 4 cores, and 3rd party HD/RAM upgrades. He'll come in under 3k rather than the 4k he says a mac pro would cost. Or, he could get a refurb mac pro from the last generation, such as a $2000 2.66 quad.

Oh, and one final point. I really liked this line:
"If you continue to refuse to listen to your customers, your stock won’t 'hang in there' and will continue to fall from the $200 a share it was, past the $122 it is now (Feb 8), and down to where it belongs in this highly competitive technological age."

Just goes to show that this guy should stick to his creative work because he doesn't understand the stock market and what drives it. Today's price is $188/share. I'm pretty sure they haven't introduced a mac pro mini since he wrote his article.

pcorajr
May 16, 2008, 02:56 PM
I do believe that we'll see a nice NEW MINI in another month or so. And I'm so hoping that it will have an upper end option which hits at least 2.4 GHz with an XMA3100 graphics chip and 4 GB RAM capacity (current MacBook specs). I couldn't care less how big the internal hard drive is (well... as long as it's at least 120 GB).

You call that a refresh? the GPU is the largest problem minis followed by the HD.

is not about introducing a new line of product but filling the gap that needs to be filled. Apple is missing out on a lot of sells by having this big gap. And users have been asking for this for a long time. Now you have Hackintosh and Phsystar taking advantage of this. Apple get a clue.

Jack Flash
May 16, 2008, 03:02 PM
You call that a refresh? the GPU is the largest problem minis followed by the HD.

is not about introducing a new line of product but filling the gap that needs to be filled. Apple is missing out on a lot of sells by having this big gap. And users have been asking for this for a long time. Now you have Hackintosh and Phsystar taking advantage of this. Apple get a clue.
And very quickly, Apple will be making it impossible for the OSx86 project to continue.

inkswamp
May 16, 2008, 05:09 PM
As its has been said earlier in this thread, Apple doesn't want "I'll make it myself" kind of customers - people who build their own PCs, or upgrade them from inside-out.

The majority of desktop PC buyers want exactly this kind of computer and yet you attempt to pigeonhole them into a niche group of gearheads and tinkerers. That is simply inaccurate. A majority of the buyers of desktop PCs want some expandability and some options. If you're suggesting that Apple doesn't want those people, then fine. I would agree. As evidenced by Dell and HP's market share, I think Apple is doing a poor job of attracting those folks--poor enough that I would also conclude that Apple isn't interested. But please don't try to write off such a massive segment of computer buyers as "make it myself" types. I'm also willing to bet that a large chunk of those buyers are businesses.

And very quickly, Apple will be making it impossible for the OSx86 project to continue.

I doubt it. If they were able to do it, why wouldn't they have stopped it by now?

furious
May 16, 2008, 06:33 PM
The guys points are sound. It is just that he comes across as a twat the way he forces his points.

I for one would love a more expandable Mac that is not the price or performance of the Mac Pro. A middle Mac.

Leon Kowalski
May 16, 2008, 06:40 PM
A majority of the buyers of desktop PCs want some expandability and some options.

Mostly agree -- but for me, it's not so much about "expandability" as
"accessibility," and industry-standard high-performance components:

- two internal HDD bays -- cheaper, faster, and less clutter than external
hard drives. Easy to replace a failed HDD or update storage capacity.

- one standard tray-loading optical bay -- instead of dog-slow, inaccessible,
ridiculously expensive (un)Superdrive that can't handle 8 cm media or BR.

- slots for 4 or 8 GB of garden-variety (cheap, non-ECC) RAM

- one video card slot -- with a choice a few "Apple-approved" GPUs. One
basic entry-level option; one pro-level, dual-link DVI, dual-head capable.

- One or two PCI slots -- for Apple-supplied, extra-profit, accessories.

Apple could sell it at $1500 (same as the 20" iMac, with the same level of
performance) and pocket the cost of the display and fancy iMac package.
Customers could add a $1200 professional monitor and still save big $$$$
(plus lots of space and kW-hr) compared to the ridiculous, over-the-top
Mac Pro.

...WHO needs 4 video cards, 6 drive bays, and a 1KW power supply?

LK

AceFernalld
May 16, 2008, 11:14 PM
Wow! This guy absolutely friggin' nails it, calling Apple on their BS.
Indeed! A friggin' Mac Tablet for a suitably cheap price? Hell yeah! Even a Mac mini pro I might go for in the future, I hope Steve Jobs actually reads this and replies/pays attention and releases those products!

Maybe a special event later in 08'? Boy would I be happy! A new Mac Tablet for Christmas??!! :D
I'd even be happy with a MacWorld 09' release :)
Of course, my single opinion doesn't matter, but as expressed by some of the previous posts on this thread, lots of people agree!

All the best, oh and this is my 100th post, I'm a regular now! :cool: *looks around at people with thousands of posts* :(
~Austin~

Cave Man
May 17, 2008, 10:28 AM
Well, I've tired of waiting for the Mac Midi. I'm going to try the hackintosh route. I've ordered the parts for a quad-core E6600 in a nice and quiet mid-tower, advanced logic board (with a 6-port ICH9 SATA controller, 4 ram slots, 6 USB, 1 FW, 2 eSATA, 802.11n, and optical and coaxial digital audio ports), 750 gig hard drive, DVD burner, 4 gigs of RAM and 256 mb dual-DVI 8600GT, and another copy of Leopard. All for just over US$1,000. It makes me a bit nervous, but from what I've seen on the web it's become much easier to do the install. Once it's up and running, I'm going to OC the cpu to 3 gHz. I'm sure I'll have a busy weekend...

Let me know how you get on :)

Well, how about an Xbench score of 171.76 at 2.4 gHz? :D This puts it up with the Mac Pro - a bit higher than Apple's quad-core, I think. It took about 3 hours to put the hardware together, but I could do it in an hour or less, now.

The fan blows all the time, so I'm going to have to readjust from my Mini for sure. But it's nice having a 750 gig drive and 256 mb NVidia card. I have a couple of issues to address (network and sound), but this machine is remarkable for $1,000.

bigwig
May 17, 2008, 12:24 PM
Apple doesn't offer a consumer desktop; the Mini is a headless Mac Book.
If only it were so powerful. The CPU is a couple notches down and the GMA950 doesn't cut it. Worse, it's probable the Macbook will get an X4500 when it upgrades to Montevina, while the Mini will probably only get an X3100. Again, the Mini is a full generation down on graphics and a couple hundred MHz down on CPU. If I could buy a Macbook without paying for the screen, I would.

DHart
May 17, 2008, 12:48 PM
If only it were so powerful. In the next month or two, the soon-to-be-revamped Mini will likely be at least as powerful as the current MacBook (2.4 GHz/GMA3100/4 GB RAM) which is a fairly potent little setup!


The CPU is a couple notches down and the GMA950 doesn't cut it. Worse, it's probable the Macbook will get an X4500 when it upgrades to Montevina, while the Mini will probably only get an X3100. Again, the Mini is a full generation down on graphics and a couple hundred MHz down on CPU.

For many graphics users, the MacBook 2.4 GHz and GMA3100 are quite nice: I'm a professional photographer/studio owner and use a MacBook paired with an HP LP2465 24" S-PVA widescreen panel for tons of Photoshop editing and desktop publishing.... and I'm really happy with the MacBook's potency for what I do. Would I like to have the X4500? Sure. But I don't feel a "need" for it with the 3100. Gamers and heavy duty video people may not like the GMA3100, but for the many of us who aren't gamers or big into video, the 3100 does a great job.

If I could buy a Macbook without paying for the screen, I would. You might be surprised on that. Having the screen is a really nice option sometimes... when you just want to get away from your desk for awhile! It makes the computer super versatile as a desktop brain driving a big, high quality monitor AND as a laptop for computing on the sofa, in bed, at Starbucks, wherever.

In fact, rather than buying the new mini I've been itching to get when it comes out, I may just upgrade my current MacBook for the new aluminum MacBook in the fall.

http://www.legendportraits.com/Misc_Images/Workstation.jpg

phalewhale
May 17, 2008, 01:55 PM
http://www.legendportraits.com/Misc_Images/Workstation.jpg

Forgive me, but is it possible to have the macbook hooked up to an external monitor but with different images on each screen? That seems to be what this picture depicts.

Wow, I didn't realise it was possible. I'm sending my iMac back and I'm gonna invest in a 23" ACD instead to save a bit of money...

DeuceDeuce
May 17, 2008, 02:10 PM
Forgive me, but is it possible to have the macbook hooked up to an external monitor but with different images on each screen? That seems to be what this picture depicts.

Wow, I didn't realise it was possible. I'm sending my iMac back and I'm gonna invest in a 23" ACD instead to save a bit of money...

Yes, you dont need to mirror the screens.

phalewhale
May 17, 2008, 02:19 PM
Yes, you dont need to mirror the screens.

Thanks DeuceDeuce! Although I love my shiny new iMac, I'm gonna return it on Monday. Instead, I'll get a 23" ACD to go with my MBP.

Thanks again.

DHart
May 17, 2008, 03:20 PM
brill... you will love the versatility of using your MBP with the bigger screen. You can have the two screens have identical display (mirror) or not. Actually, my preferred working method is the MacBook CLOSED and using only the big screen... but sometimes I'll use the big screen for my editing work with Mail or Safari open on the MacBook screen. There is a ton of flexibility using a MB or MBP with a large external display.

P.S. TO use the MacBook while it is closed, you just close the top to put it to sleep and wake it up by inserting something into a USB port or clicking the keys on your external keyboard... this wakes the MacBook up without having to open the MacBook... now you're using the MacBook purely as the brain. NICE!!!

adamfishercox
May 17, 2008, 05:34 PM
What I don't get is why Apple markets the Mac Pro as starting at $2800, but they actually offer a 4 core option for considerably less. Why wouldn't they advertise a lower price!?

phalewhale
May 17, 2008, 05:45 PM
brill... you will love the versatility of using your MBP with the bigger screen. You can have the two screens have identical display (mirror) or not. Actually, my preferred working method is the MacBook CLOSED and using only the big screen... but sometimes I'll use the big screen for my editing work with Mail or Safari open on the MacBook screen. There is a ton of flexibility using a MB or MBP with a large external display.

P.S. TO use the MacBook while it is closed, you just close the top to put it to sleep and wake it up by inserting something into a USB port or clicking the keys on your external keyboard... this wakes the MacBook up without having to open the MacBook... now you're using the MacBook purely as the brain. NICE!!!

Ah fantastic! So that means the keyboard simply plugs into the display? The to wake the sleeping MBP, I just plug the keyboard into the MBP? However, I do really like the sound of being able to use my laptop for stuff like mail/iCal. That sounds so cool. Thanks DHart!

rpaloalto
May 17, 2008, 06:33 PM
What I don't get is why Apple markets the Mac Pro as starting at $2800, but they actually offer a 4 core option for considerably less. Why wouldn't they advertise a lower price!?

Apple's line of mac pro's are, all the 8 core models now ''standard''.
The current 4 core 2.8 is not too different than the last models, entry the 2.66 quad. Also the new 8 core model is priced cheaper then the last generation's 8 core.

eXan
May 17, 2008, 11:10 PM
Forgive me, but is it possible to have the macbook hooked up to an external monitor but with different images on each screen? That seems to be what this picture depicts.

Wow, I didn't realise it was possible. I'm sending my iMac back and I'm gonna invest in a 23" ACD instead to save a bit of money...

You know, sometimes its good to read the product specs page before buying something!

From MBP's specs page (http://www.apple.com/macbookpro/specs.html):

Dual display and video mirroring: Simultaneously supports full native resolution on the built-in display and up to 2560 by 1600 pixels on an external display, both at millions of colors

KurtangleTN
May 18, 2008, 12:46 AM
Agreed with the letter, but I'm not sure why it has to be a small computer.

It seems since the PowerMac G5 Apple has killed off that mid ranged tower market. The PowerMac G4 always seemed to have (and this is just off me watching older keynotes in my free time) a ~ $1,500 tower for people who would don't need the emence power of the higher ends but just wanted the expandability over the iMacs.

Apple seems to have dropped this market and is now hammering in this "Pro vs Consumer" mentality to everyone.

They think it's a black and white issue. There is a reason most PC makers offer so many models, because there are so many different customers. Sure, you lose simplicity but in the end I'm not sure that's a big factor in people's purchase anyway.

Apple may think "If it's not broken don't fix it, our sales are great" yes this may be true in most situations but the system is broke and I know plenty of people who want a Mac but are unable/unwilling to compromise to the iMac and lose expandability and customization. Simplicity is good in a lot of areas, sales isn't one of them.

phalewhale
May 18, 2008, 03:55 AM
You know, sometimes its good to read the product specs page before buying something!

From MBP's specs page (http://www.apple.com/macbookpro/specs.html):

I cannot argue with you on that. But even if I could, I wouldn't...
Thanks for the link :)

shizzlegtx
May 18, 2008, 05:52 AM
I dunno, this guy seems to hit the nail on the head.

Being a PC guy who just recently bought a Macbook for school, I tend to side on the PC front here because its more cost efficient. I used to build PC's all the time and 4 years ago when I did I would always buy AMD, because it was cheaper, much cheaper than intel, and the intel chips weren't so much better that it justified the extra cash.


This seems like the case to me here. Sure he could buy a new Mac Pro, but by the time he upgrades it to where it needs to be, it'll be so expensive and massive that it wouldn't be worth it. It'd be a lot cheaper to buy a powerhouse PC.

Neutral Gamer
May 18, 2008, 08:46 AM
What I don't get is why Apple markets the Mac Pro as starting at $2800, but they actually offer a 4 core option for considerably less. Why wouldn't they advertise a lower price!?

You make a very good point my friend, I've often wondered this myself. The 4 core Mac Pro is $2299 ($500 saving) which is only $100 more than the high end iMac!

If people saw how close the price was I'm sure there'd be some who'd just say, "Hmmm, I might as well as go the whole hog and just get the Mac Pro." Apple could do what they do with the iMac's and show a few different model configurations on the Mac Pro store page.

Mac Pro's starting from just $2299 has a nice ring to it after all ... :)

Cave Man
May 18, 2008, 09:04 AM
You make a very good point my friend, I've often wondered this myself. The 4 core Mac Pro is $2299 ($500 saving) which is only $100 more than the high end iMac!

But that high-end iMac comes with a 24" S-IPS or H-IPS panel in it. If you pick up one of those for your 4-core, that'll set you back another $600 or more.

Neutral Gamer
May 18, 2008, 11:54 AM
But that high-end iMac comes with a 24" S-IPS or H-IPS panel in it. If you pick up one of those for your 4-core, that'll set you back another $600 or more.

But what if you ALREADY own a high quality monitor or monitors?
What if you need a non-glossy display?
What if you don't want to risk having gradient and backlight bleeding issues?
What if you want to use a 30" ACD?

Besides you get so many other advantages in choosing a Mac Pro over an iMac, here's a small example list:


Faster and higher number of processors
Larger maximum memory capacity
Ability to add multiple internal hard disk drives
Being able to connect at least 2x30" ACD's and add multiple graphics cards


The Mac Pro definitely isn't for everyone and way more powerful than most people's needs. But if Apple advertised that the Mac Pro's started at $2299 some people may find themselves better off choosing one over an iMac.

bigwig
May 18, 2008, 12:20 PM
The Mac Pro definitely isn't for everyone and way more powerful than most people's needs. But if Apple advertised that the Mac Pro's started at $2299 some people may find themselves better off choosing one over an iMac.
How about the Macbook Pro? It can drive a 30" ACD, has FW800, plus it's portable. It's also a little cheaper than the low end Mac Pro and will save you a few bucks on your electricity bill.

MrT8064
May 18, 2008, 12:38 PM
You know, sometimes its good to read the product specs page before buying something!

From MBP's specs page (http://www.apple.com/macbookpro/specs.html):

The person asked about a MACBOOK not a MacBook Pro....


(it is still possible with a MacBook dual DVI)

Neutral Gamer
May 18, 2008, 12:52 PM
How about the Macbook Pro? It can drive a 30" ACD, has FW800, plus it's portable. It's also a little cheaper than the low end Mac Pro and will save you a few bucks on your electricity bill.

Oh yeah, I'm with you on that one mate. That's why I bought a MBP before and why I'm waiting patiently for the Summer redesign for my replacement. I always thought of a MBP as a portable desktop (especially the 17" Hi-Res model) which along with an external monitor gives you the best of both worlds. :)

(Although the heat and fan noise when playing a game can be a bit much ...)

Again though it's personal preferences and individual usage requirements that dictate what you should buy. As great as the MBP's and iMac's are, they're limited when it comes to upgradeability if that's what you need. And with the iMac you're left with a perfectly working monitor, which you can't use elsewhere, when you've outgrown the rest of the hardware.

DHart
May 18, 2008, 01:24 PM
And with the iMac you're left with a perfectly working monitor, which you can't use elsewhere, when you've outgrown the rest of the hardware.

Ain't THAT the truth!!! I've got a number of white 20" iMacs with the best displays I've ever seen... but the computers are reaaally pokey by todays standards... 2.0 GHz Core Duos. Otherwise I TOTALLY love my white iMacs! Wish I could use the monitors with newer brains!!!

Cave Man
May 18, 2008, 01:39 PM
{...said many things with which I agree.}

But the issue is there's no "in-between" mid-tower in the $1500 range, which is what this thread started out about. If I can build a computer with off-the-shelf components that exceed the performance of Apple's $2,300 quad-core Mac Pro for $1,000, then surely Apple could do the same for $1,500. But that would cut into Apple's profit margin, which I'm beginning to suspect is around $1,000 for that $2,300 Mac Pro.

Neutral Gamer
May 18, 2008, 02:03 PM
But the issue is there's no "in-between" mid-tower in the $1500 range, which is what this thread started out about. If I can build a computer with off-the-shelf components that exceed the performance of Apple's $2,300 quad-core Mac Pro for $1,000, then surely Apple could do the same for $1,500. But that would cut into Apple's profit margin, which I'm beginning to suspect is around $1,000 for that $2,300 Mac Pro.

You make good points. You're right with the $1500 range. Even if Apple simply released an iMac with exactly the same specifications as they have now, minus the monitor, most people would be happy.

They'd actually make MORE profit than they do now. As people have said the monitors they use in the iMacs are expensive. Yet Apple could sell a headless iMac without reducing the price by the full cost of the monitor and it would still sell.

But until they do that, what can people do? A single processor Mac Pro is as close as they'll get with a Mac Mini just being too much of a compromise for most people.

Do you think Apple really make a $1000 profit from the Mac Pro? That's amazing if true, no wonder Apple are doing so well despite more expensive products! But aren't the Intel Xeon processors supposed to be quite expensive?

DHart
May 18, 2008, 02:27 PM
The high end spec MacBook is the best choice we've got right now for a mid-range desktop brain. (Faster than mini, less costly than Pro and MBP). Nice thing is the MacBook doubles as a great portable laptop when you want to move the party to the sofa, bed, or Starbucks in Cancun.

Cave Man
May 18, 2008, 03:10 PM
Do you think Apple really make a $1000 profit from the Mac Pro? That's amazing if true, no wonder Apple are doing so well despite more expensive products! But aren't the Intel Xeon processors supposed to be quite expensive?

You're right, they do use Harpertown server cpus in the Mac Pros. That processor is about $500 more than the Q6600 (a Kentsfield), so I guess their profit per unit might be in the $500-$700 area. The Harpertown has a bigger L2 cache (12 mb vs 4 mb), requires less voltage, support SSE4 and has a 1333 mHz fsb (vs. 1066 mHz).

phalewhale
May 18, 2008, 03:17 PM
But what if you ALREADY own a high quality monitor or monitors?
What if you need a non-glossy display?
What if you don't want to risk having gradient and backlight bleeding issues?
What if you want to use a 30" ACD?

Besides you get so many other advantages in choosing a Mac Pro over an iMac, here's a small example list:


Faster and higher number of processors
Larger maximum memory capacity
Ability to add multiple internal hard disk drives
Being able to connect at least 2x30" ACD's and add multiple graphics cards


The Mac Pro definitely isn't for everyone and way more powerful than most people's needs. But if Apple advertised that the Mac Pro's started at $2299 some people may find themselves better off choosing one over an iMac.

Apart for the expense (for those of us who do not have an existing monitor), the sheer size of the Mac Pro puts me off. If Apple offered something that was expandable but not as large or pricey as the Mac Pro, I would go for one immediately.

Neutral Gamer
May 18, 2008, 03:29 PM
Apart for the expense (for those of us who do not have an existing monitor), the sheer size of the Mac Pro puts me off. If Apple offered something that was expandable but not as large or pricey as the Mac Pro, I would go for one immediately.

The Mac Pro IS big, in fact bigger than you expect it to be when you see it in person. I think it's even slightly bigger than my custom made PC case. This at a time when many PC manufacturers are making pretty small and slim cases, such as Dell, for example. :eek:

Making it say, 60-65% the size would make it a lot more desirable for those with limited space. Of course if you're gonna simply have the case under your desk then for most people it shouldn't really matter how big it is. I'm sure I was reading somewhere though that the G4's were smaller than the G5 / Mac Pro's, right?

Mitch1984
May 18, 2008, 03:39 PM
I think he would have been better getting his point across without resorting to hurling insults at Steve.

feelthefire
May 18, 2008, 06:04 PM
Yes they do, but they do it via smaller, de-contented models.

The Mercedes 190 Series in the 1980's and the new BMW 1-Series are both examples of this. They are not cheap, but neither are they nearly as expensive as their bigger brothers (E Class, 5 Series, etc.).

The Mac Mini is Apple's 190/1-Series. It's smaller then the iMac. It has less performance and content. And it isn't cheap, but it is cheaper then an iMac or Mac Pro.

Poor analogy, at least on the BMW 1 series front-- the 1 series borrows an engine from the M3 and defeats its own big brother (3 series) in 0-60 and in horsepower, in a lighter package. It's a serious sleeper of a car.

But I digress. There is a 2.66 Quad mac pro available for $1999. That was most likely targeted at this type of user. The size of the casing is a separate grievance.

Tallest Skil
May 18, 2008, 06:06 PM
...but the computers are reaaally pokey by todays standards...

Yeah... you keep thinking that. They may not be spectacular for professional work anymore, but they're not slow in the least.

furious
May 18, 2008, 06:09 PM
I think he would have been better getting his point across without resorting to hurling insults at Steve.

exactly

DHart
May 18, 2008, 10:25 PM
Yeah... you keep thinking that. They may not be spectacular for professional work anymore, but they're not slow in the least.

I am more than thrilled with my 20" White 2.0 GHz CoreDuo iMacs (I have three of them)... in my opinion they were the pinnacle of the iMac, which went downhill (at least from a display standpoint) shortly thereafter. I'm still tryly amazed today by the quality of the display.... stunningly superb image quality. I soooo wish I could just upgrade the processor and the RAM capacity because in every other respect, I am extremely happy with them. And you're right, the 2.0 GHz CoreDuo speed isn't exactly slooooow... but when you run a filter in Photoshop, things sure seem to poke along compared with the 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo.

eXan
May 18, 2008, 11:07 PM
The person asked about a MACBOOK not a MacBook Pro....


(it is still possible with a MacBook dual DVI)

He has a MBP though ;)

Vanilla Thunder
May 18, 2008, 11:33 PM
I used to hope that Apple would come out with a Cube II. I probably held onto that dream for 2 or 3 years. Then I decided to go Hackintosh, and I never want to go backintosh. ;)

ZiggyPastorius
May 18, 2008, 11:34 PM
[snip]

Jack Flash
May 18, 2008, 11:47 PM
[snip]

Yeah, that 8-Core Mac Pro isn't $100 more than an iMac.

ZiggyPastorius
May 18, 2008, 11:49 PM
Yeah, that 8-Core Mac Pro isn't $100 more than an iMac.

I never made that claim. The 4-core one, is.

TBi
May 19, 2008, 03:45 AM
Poor analogy, at least on the BMW 1 series front-- the 1 series borrows an engine from the M3 and defeats its own big brother (3 series) in 0-60 and in horsepower, in a lighter package. It's a serious sleeper of a car.

Hmmm... lets see...

M3 (http://www.parkers.co.uk/cars/specs/Detail.aspx?deriv=37230):
Engine Size 3999 cc
Power Output 414 bhp

1 Coupe (http://www.parkers.co.uk/cars/specs/Detail.aspx?deriv=38019):
Engine Size 2979 cc
Power Output 301 bhp

I think you have a few key facts wrong here...

Unless you meant the standard 3 series coupe, not the M3...

He has a MBP though ;)

I don't get why that guy was complaining though. I mean, they both support the same thing. It's not like you were claiming the Macbook could do something it couldn't.

Cave Man
May 21, 2008, 07:20 PM
Well, how about an Xbench score of 171.76 at 2.4 gHz? :D This puts it up with the Mac Pro - a bit higher than Apple's quad-core, I think. It took about 3 hours to put the hardware together, but I could do it in an hour or less, now.

Wow. I just overclocked the cpu to 3.2 gHz and my Xbench scored jumped to 217. I just did a 2-pass Handbrake transcode for Apple TV (2500 bit rate H.264, AAC and AC3 audio) and it did a 1:55 movie in 55 minutes. Highest core temp was 66 C. It's now idling at 45 C. Remarkable. I should have built this computer a long time ago.