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View Full Version : 640Gig Drive 3Gig Ram - No longer 'Pro' Spec




Deepshade
Jun 29, 2010, 02:22 PM
With Seagate releasing a 3Tb drive (talk of user needs growing a 100's gig per year) and even the most basic iMac having more Ram, the base 640/3gig MacPro looks less than 'Pro' spec.



strausd
Jun 29, 2010, 02:39 PM
These are probably the easiest thing for the user to upgrade themselves and all users do it. If they had a base model with more RAM and a bigger harddrive, wouldn't that just bump up the base cost of the MP? I doubt they would keep it the same price knowing how greedy Apple is.

Ravich
Jun 29, 2010, 02:44 PM
I would like to think that the fact that these are still so low are signs that the update is around the corner....





.....







:(

G4DP
Jun 29, 2010, 02:51 PM
The drives and RAM provided have never been of a Pro standard. They never will be.

As another poster mentioned. Everyone - with a brain cell - adds more after purchase.

Umbongo
Jun 29, 2010, 03:30 PM
What is pro spec then?

Deepshade
Jun 29, 2010, 03:33 PM
What is pro spec then?

Should be at least equal to the iMac.

Certainly feel Apple is pulling a fast one when you have to UP the spec by default to surpass Apples all in one!

Would you expect to purchase a coupe with saloon specs AND pay for the bodywork and trim upgrade because it was called a coupe or because the spec you purchased merited the title in the first place and it started of being a coupe?

Umbongo
Jun 29, 2010, 03:45 PM
Should be at least equal to the iMac.

Certainly feel Apple is pulling a fast one when you have to UP the spec by default to surpass Apples all in one!

The whole Mac Pro feels like that, even at launch it did.

I understand where you are coming from, but from the other side they don't need to offer large amounts of memory or storage to sell these systems. The iMac's specs are no more "pro" than the Mac Pro's 3GB/640GB if you look at what most people on here upgrade to and other companies, although having much wider options, often start with a single 1GB DIMM and sub 500GB hard drive.

Deepshade
Jun 29, 2010, 03:56 PM
The whole Mac Pro feels like that, even at launch it did.

I understand where you are coming from, but from the other side they don't need to offer large amounts of memory or storage to sell these systems. The iMac's specs are no more "pro" than the Mac Pro's 3GB/640GB if you look at what most people on here upgrade to and other companies, although having much wider options, often start with a single 1GB DIMM and sub 500GB hard drive.

Digital storage and the need for more and more file manipulation/processing space (in RAM) is progressing at a huge rate. The current Mac Pro spec forces the purchaser into upgrading by default, just to keep up with the software - thats ludicrous for a supposedly PRO line.

SuperJudge
Jun 30, 2010, 08:03 AM
Digital storage and the need for more and more file manipulation/processing space (in RAM) is progressing at a huge rate. The current Mac Pro spec forces the purchaser into upgrading by default, just to keep up with the software - thats ludicrous for a supposedly PRO line.

Personally, I don't want to pay more for stuff that's going to get replaced out of hand as soon as I get it. I'm certainly not going to pay Apple a premium to get more RAM and more HD space in my Mac Pro when I can get it for cheaper from a third party.

But honestly, for most people purchasing Mac Pros, it doesn't matter how much they cost. They'll recoup the cost of the hardware with whatever their output is, be it movies, photos, research or whatever. Pro-grade machines should make money, not cost it.

WardC
Jul 19, 2010, 08:04 PM
Well 4 SATA II drive bays and capacity for 64GB of RAM is pro spec.

Giuly
Jul 19, 2010, 11:36 PM
Well 4 SATA II drive bays and capacity for 64GB of RAM is pro spec.
For a Mac - Yes. For PCs in general - not really, you'd go rather with it's 2 quad-core processors as an argument. Every Socket 1366 i7 with 6 RAM slots is capable of 32GB RAM and most likely 6xSATA 6GBit/s, but you can't add another processor. The single processor Mac Pro is not really pro spec, the dual processor is, even if a single hexa-core i7 can outperform it, but you can blame Apple's disability to offer newest chips for that.

Oh, and because of the expensive ECC RAM you can expose it to a source of radiation like an MRI, x-ray machines - or elevated levels of cosmic ray. Most people have such at home - at least in Eureka, CA. But they run their own OS anyways and don't use Macs. It works fine in Chernobyl, too.

With Seagate releasing a 3Tb drive (talk of user needs growing a 100's gig per year) and even the most basic iMac having more Ram, the base 640/3gig MacPro looks less than 'Pro' spec.
Same goes for the Mini, 320GB 5400RPM base hard drive and 500GB BTO option in the Mid-2010 model while 750GB 7200RPM drives are widely available and fit in there, for the price of the BTO 500GB upgrade, and compared to the Mac Pro and MB(P) you're not even allowed to change it yourself without voiding the warranty. 2GB base RAM while you'll need 4GB to properly play a 720p video and open 5 Tabs in Safari without running short on memory. Not to mention the Core 2 Duo.
If they keep this pace up, the MacBook won't be much more then a really overpriced netbook.

CaptainChunk
Jul 20, 2010, 04:34 PM
For a Mac - Yes. For PCs in general - not really, you'd go rather with it's 2 quad-core processors as an argument. Every Socket 1366 i7 with 6 RAM slots is capable of 32GB RAM and most likely 6xSATA 6GBit/s, but you can't add another processor. The single processor Mac Pro is not really pro spec, the dual processor is, even if a single hexa-core i7 can outperform it, but you can blame Apple's disability to offer newest chips for that.

Actually, the X58 chipsets used by LPGA 1366 Core i7s support up to 24GB of RAM (unregistered modules) on 6 sockets, not 32GB. Though you can hit 48GB using 8GB registered modules (extremely expensive, however). 8-core Mac Pros support up to 32GB because of the presence of 8 DIMM sockets (8x4GB).

And a single hexa-core outperforming a dual quad-core (8 effective cores) setup is very debatable. For single-threaded tasks, yes. But for multithreaded computing, I beg to differ. An 8-core Nehalem Xeon setup would still have the upper hand there.

Oh, and because of the expensive ECC RAM you can expose it to a source of radiation like an MRI, x-ray machines - or elevated levels of cosmic ray. Most people have such at home - at least in Eureka, CA. But they run their own OS anyways and don't use Macs. It works fine in Chernobyl, too.

ECC spec memory is used on the Mac Pro purely due to Intel's component specifications for the Xeon chipsets. These are server processors, after all.

Same goes for the Mini, 320GB 5400RPM base hard drive and 500GB BTO option in the Mid-2010 model while 750GB 7200RPM drives are widely available and fit in there, for the price of the BTO 500GB upgrade, and compared to the Mac Pro and MB(P) you're not even allowed to change it yourself without voiding the warranty. 2GB base RAM while you'll need 4GB to properly play a 720p video and open 5 Tabs in Safari without running short on memory. Not to mention the Core 2 Duo.
If they keep this pace up, the MacBook won't be much more then a really overpriced netbook.

Quad-core chips require more power to run and generate more heat. Sure, there's quad-core laptop PCs you can buy NOW, but none of them are under an inch thick, nor achieve anything close to 7-8 battery life. It's always a trade-off, for better or worse.


I can fully appreciate the rants about the current 2009 Mac Pros (especially the quad core model), but aren't we beating a dead horse already? My 2008 Mac Pro 8-core came with 2GB of RAM (when even then, 4GB was the de facto standard for a pro/prosumer machine) and a wimpy video card (2600 XT 256MB), but I didn't cry. I just upgraded. And every pro seems to do that. That's whole point of buying a Mac PRO.

Giuly
Jul 20, 2010, 08:13 PM
Actually, the X58 chipsets used by LPGA 1366 Core i7s support up to 24GB of RAM (unregistered modules) on 6 sockets, not 32GB. Though you can hit 48GB using 8GB registered modules (extremely expensive, however). 8-core Mac Pros support up to 32GB because of the presence of 8 DIMM sockets (8x4GB).
So a quad core Mac Pro can accomodate 16GB, the 1366 i7 24GB.
ECC spec memory is used on the Mac Pro purely due to Intel's component specifications for the Xeon chipsets. These are server processors, after all.
An i7 will do the job on the quad core Mac Pro, which doesn't need ECC memory. As both CPUs and memory are cheaper, this makes the "Mac Tower" everyone wants to have, without any hardware change, just by drop-in-replacement.
Quad-core chips require more power to run and generate more heat. Sure, there's quad-core laptop PCs you can buy NOW, but none of them are under an inch thick, nor achieve anything close to 7-8 battery life. It's always a trade-off, for better or worse.
I was rather referring to the Performance-per-Watt-per-$ rating of the i5/i7 dual cores compared to the C2Ds. The i5 and i7 in the MBPs are top of the line, the 2.4GHz C2D could be replaced with the high-end i3 and the 2.66GHz C2D could be dropped in favor of the i5. Same for the Mini, it should carry i3/i5/i7 mobile processors. They all have the same 35W rating. It doesn't really make sense to see the 3.06GHz T9900 C2D in the next line up, however it consumes the same 35W.
There are even 2 flavors of i7 CPUs that fit the MacBook Air, one with 1,2GHz with TurboBoost to 2,26Ghz, the other one with 1,33/2,4GHz, which are consuming 18W, while the recent MBA CPUs consume 17W.
The Mini could also get a little beef up in terms of CPU cooling, and accommodate at least the 45W mobile i7 quad cores. I haven't heard the fan of it spinning up on full load until now, at about 35C room temperature. It may work fine without any upgrading of the cooling.

Not to mention that in the consumer/prosumer range of the iMac and the quad-core Mac Pro, AMD offers the same performance per Watt at half the $. I can understand Apples choice for Intel over AMD because Intel has the fastest processors out there, but I haven't seen any Core2Extreme or i7 Extreme Edition Mac yet, and AMD's mid-range offer is the superior, that applies to dual processor Opterons too, as well as 35W dual core laptop processors up to 2.8GHz, triple core up to 2.1GHz and quad core up to 2.0GHz, and they support DDR3-1066 just like the C2Ds and Core-i CPUs. The Mobility Radeon HD 5730 also has superior performance over the GT330m, consuming the same power.

CaptainChunk
Jul 20, 2010, 08:35 PM
So a quad core Mac Pro can accomodate 16GB, the 1366 i7 24GB.

It's been widely acknowledged since its launch that the current quad-core Mac Pro is inherently flawed in several areas, this being one of them. I'm not arguing that point.

An i7 will do the job on the quad core Mac Pro, which doesn't need ECC memory. As both CPUs and memory are cheaper, this makes the "Mac Tower" everyone wants to have, without any hardware change, just by drop-in-replacement.

I think a lot of people would love to see an i7 based single-CPU Mac Pro, since for most purposes, Xeons are totally unnecessary in such configurations. Whether or not that will actually happen on the next Mac Pro is up in the air, although I kind of doubt it.

I was rather referring to the Performance-per-Watt-per-$ rating of the i5/i7 dual cores compared to the C2Ds. The i5 and i7 in the MBPs are top of the line, the 2.4GHz C2D could be replaced with the high-end i3 and the 2.66GHz C2D could be dropped in favor of the i5. Same for the Mini, it should carry i3/i5/i7 mobile processors. They all have the same 35W rating. It doesn't really make sense to see the 3.06GHz T9900 C2D in the next line up, however it consumes the same 35W.
There are even 2 flavors of i7 CPUs that fit the MacBook Air, one with 1,2GHz with TurboBoost to 2,26Ghz, the other one with 1,33/2,4GHz, which are consuming 18W, while the recent MBA CPUs consume 17W.
The Mini could also get a little beef up in terms of CPU cooling, and accommodate at least the 45W mobile i7 quad cores. I haven't heard the fan of it spinning up on full load until now, at about 35C room temperature. It may work fine without any upgrading of the cooling.

Valid points. I'd love to see the Core 2 Duo die as well. And this may all be due to differences in bulk parts pricing Apple may be getting from Intel on C2D chips (as opposed to Intel's newer low-end chips, like the i3). Hard to say. I'm by no means an Apple insider, so I can only speculate like the rest of us...

Giuly
Jul 20, 2010, 08:55 PM
And this may all be due to differences in bulk parts pricing Apple may be getting from Intel on C2D chips (as opposed to Intel's newer low-end chips, like the i3). Hard to say. I'm by no means an Apple insider, so I can only speculate like the rest of us...

I rather blame Intel on that one. (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/04/19/another-look-at-apples-core-2-duo-choice-for-new-13-inch-macbook-pro/)

CaptainChunk
Jul 20, 2010, 09:02 PM
I rather blame Intel on that one. (http://www.macrumors.com/2010/04/19/another-look-at-apples-core-2-duo-choice-for-new-13-inch-macbook-pro/)

Oh, right you are. The whole licensing of Intel graphics with CPU-embedded IGPs totally slipped my mind. :o

It's so stupid too, because Intel can't design their way out of a wet paper bag when it comes to graphics.

Umbongo
Jul 20, 2010, 09:29 PM
I think a lot of people would love to see an i7 based single-CPU Mac Pro, since for most purposes, Xeons are totally unnecessary in such configurations. Whether or not that will actually happen on the next Mac Pro is up in the air, although I kind of doubt it.

It won't happen and really Core i7 is the completely unnecessary option because the Xeons are the same price and you don't have to use ECC memory with Xeons, but they allow the option of doing so and of having DIMM sizes larger than 4GB currently.

CaptainChunk
Jul 21, 2010, 02:05 AM
It won't happen and really Core i7 is the completely unnecessary option because the Xeons are the same price and you don't have to use ECC memory with Xeons, but they allow the option of doing so and of having DIMM sizes larger than 4GB currently.

Sure, Xeons don't NEED ECC, but Apple does it anyway. Plus, if one were to add to the factory memory in a Mac Pro, I don't believe you can mix and match ECC modules with non-ECC types, but I could be wrong.

But I still don't think that even at the same bulk chip prices, it's really necessary to use a Xeon in a single-CPU Mac Pro. Further, I don't think there's much of a market (especially at the high prices of >4GB registered DIMMs) for memory modules above 4GB in size in Apple's entry-level workstation.

Personally, I think I rather see an X58-based Mac Pro with a single hexa-core CPU and 6 DIMM sockets for the new entry model, but one could only dream. I just think it's silly that the current single-CPU machine has 4 DIMM sockets, one of which sits there and does nothing in a proper triple-channel memory configuration. And if you want over 8GB of RAM, you have to shell out the big bucks for 4GB modules, making the 8-core model far more tempting. I think they did this on purpose. :rolleyes:

Umbongo
Jul 21, 2010, 03:11 AM
Sure, Xeons don't NEED ECC, but Apple does it anyway. Plus, if one were to add to the factory memory in a Mac Pro, I don't believe you can mix and match ECC modules with non-ECC types, but I could be wrong.

But I still don't think that even at the same bulk chip prices, it's really necessary to use a Xeon in a single-CPU Mac Pro. Further, I don't think there's much of a market (especially at the high prices of >4GB registered DIMMs) for memory modules above 4GB in size in Apple's entry-level workstation.

Apple use Xeons and ECC because customers want it. While many don't need or want it the fact that some do coupled with the image a Xeon based workstation presents means Apple aren't likely to change things any time soon. Besides they didn't offer 1333MHz memory alongside 1066, so I doubt they would want to be selling ECC and non-ECC.

Personally, I think I rather see an X58-based Mac Pro with a single hexa-core CPU and 6 DIMM sockets for the new entry model, but one could only dream. I just think it's silly that the current single-CPU machine has 4 DIMM sockets, one of which sits there and does nothing in a proper triple-channel memory configuration. And if you want over 8GB of RAM, you have to shell out the big bucks for 4GB modules, making the 8-core model far more tempting. I think they did this on purpose. :rolleyes:

Just another poor design choice. They could have made 6 and 9 work if 12 wouldn't fit on the dual socket board. The 09 models have that whole "just enough so people buy it" feeling in many areas.

Pressure
Jul 21, 2010, 03:26 AM
I am starting to see the Mac Pro as a barebones system, where you have to add your own upgrades to get it usable ;)

That is, until it finally gets its upgrade heh.

Deepshade
Jul 21, 2010, 03:34 AM
I am starting to see the Mac Pro as a barebones system, where you have to add your own upgrades to get it usable ;)

That is, until it finally gets its upgrade heh.

Let's hope!


I really think users need to look at this in another way . Your are paying premium price for this product. It should have premium memory, big drive and a fast GPU. Not parts and specs that were the 'norm' 2-3 years.

Starting to look like the mentality behind the latest Porsche Boxster Spyder...they make it bare bones and charge you more because it has a special name.

ValSalva
Jul 21, 2010, 04:45 AM
Personally, I don't want to pay more for stuff that's going to get replaced out of hand as soon as I get it. I'm certainly not going to pay Apple a premium to get more RAM and more HD space in my Mac Pro when I can get it for cheaper from a third party.

I agree. I wish the MBP came with a very low spec of 2GB RAM, small HDD, etc. If I plan on putting in 8GB of RAM and a larger HDD or an SSD then I'm stuck buying overpriced components that get stashed in a drawer. I like the low spec option. Preferably it would exist on the iMac too.

SuperJudge
Jul 21, 2010, 07:10 AM
I really think users need to look at this in another way . Your are paying premium price for this product. It should have premium memory, big drive and a fast GPU. Not parts and specs that were the 'norm' 2-3 years.I'm paying a premium for system that has been expertly integrated with its OS and that will run without stopping for weeks at a time. As I alluded to previously, the workstation market may overlap with the high-end consumer market but they are NOT the same. The fact that Apple's workstation offering is also their high-end consumer offering confuses the fact further. That said, it would be nice to be able to get a decent video card from the factory for the current gen Mac Pros.

Starting to look like the mentality behind the latest Porsche Boxster Spyder...they make it bare bones and charge you more because it has a special name.Not exactly a fair comparison. You're getting more than "a special name" with the Spyder. Have you looked at the spec sheets for the Spyder as compared to the stock Boxster or Boxster S?