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Old Jan 24, 2013, 07:29 PM   #101
KaraH
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Originally Posted by deconstruct60 View Post
Given 2012's huge gap between XEon E5 announce and system vendors' release even a July announce might mean a couple month delay for actual systems. That is way too big of a gap between WWDC and shipping. Apple's already partially invoked the Osborne effect on the Mac Pro. It highly unlikley they'd amplify that with a large gap between announce and ship.
Oh? I would say a gap like that between announce and ship is exactly what they will do. Look at how apple handled announce/ship with the 2012 iMacs. Not just a large delay but also having the higher end machines ship after the lower end ones rather than ship them at the same time.
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Old Jan 24, 2013, 08:35 PM   #102
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Oh? I would say a gap like that between announce and ship is exactly what they will do. Look at how apple handled announce/ship with the 2012 iMacs.
That was a long term planned strategy? You are joking right? The strategy that killed their streak of year-over-year Mac sales growth and contributed to biggest stock drop in several years ? ??

Yeah sure, they want to do that again and permanently put that into the playbook.

The iMac shipped like that because the production logistics were, and still are, screwed up. Bugs happen to everyone from time to time.


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Not just a large delay but also having the higher end machines ship after the lower end ones rather than ship them at the same time.
Larger screens are harder to laminate with the process they are using than smaller ones. That was why. It was driven by the processes out of their control (given the position they had put themselves into at that point.). There is no "harder" in a bigger/smaller Mac Pro (if they even went that route at all).

More than likely someone though they would have worked out all the kinks with the MBP 15" at much lower unit numbers. They didn't and the whole release chain blew up in their face.
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Old Jan 24, 2013, 08:57 PM   #103
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That was a long term planned strategy? You are joking right? The strategy that killed their streak of year-over-year Mac sales growth and contributed to biggest stock drop in several years ? ??

Yeah sure, they want to do that again and permanently put that into the playbook.
I am *not* saying it was a good way to do a launch and I am sure nobody, including Apple, thought it was. What I *am* saying is now that precedent is there so it would not be an anomaly if it happened again.

The iMac is their bridge to the iDevices from the computer world and essentially the central station for whichever ones a customer owns. Hence the markets would pay attention to it as it is basically a big iDevice. The pro is not in the iDevice model though so a holdup there would not cause as much an ouch to the stock price.

[As both someone looking for a new iMac at the time and a stockholder the 2012 delay and stock drop was a double ouch.]
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Old Jan 25, 2013, 04:51 PM   #104
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I am *not* saying it was a good way to do a launch and I am sure nobody, including Apple, thought it was. What I *am* saying is now that precedent is there so it would not be an anomaly if it happened again.
Precedence on what? That some radically new screen tech will clog up the logistics of the Mac Pro roll-out ? Not likely at all.

That Apple won't learn how to do better risk management on roll outs? Not likely at all. The huge Mobile Me screw up was not followed by another screw up of similar magnitude. Nor did the iPhone 5 (or 4S) suffer from antennagate problems. The iPhone 5 rollout was the fastest group roll-out they've ever done. Apple makes mistakes, but it has a pretty good track record of learning from the mistakes.

That the Mac form factor may get reworked and that would cause a problem? Not really since the retina MBP rolled out OK. Likewise the addition of the 13" MBA to the MBA subgroup. The transition to the current Mac mini format sans ODD went smoothly. Likewise with the 68K->PPC or PPC -> x86 transition. In fact, stumbling on a case and/or technology modification is far more an outlier than representative (precedence setting ) behavior.

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The iMac is their bridge to the iDevices from the computer world and essentially the central station for whichever ones a customer owns.
Not. The vast majority of iOS device owners don't even own a Mac let alone primarily targeted by an iMac. At this point, if anything, it is the other direction and primarily to some MacBook "something".

The iOS devices are computers. The notion of them as non computers is fundamentally flawed. Form factor over substance has never been a well reasoned stance over the long term when it come to computers.

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The pro is not in the iDevice model though so a holdup there would not cause as much an ouch to the stock price.
Why would Apple want to hold up the Mac Pro anymore more than they already have? It already creeping closer to a year late. The primary problem the Mac Pro is suffering from is viability; not enough folks buying it. Unless trying to be purposely destructive holding it back will far more likely kill off the product over the long run than return it to a healthy status.

There is no significant impact on the stock price whether it gets sold or dropped. A revised sandy bridge Mac Pro released summer 2012 would not have "saved" FY Q1's dramatic sang on Mac units sold. Perhaps cover minor fluctuations of iMacs sold, but "missing in action" for pratically the whole quarter, no.
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Old Jan 25, 2013, 08:36 PM   #105
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Why would Apple want to hold up the Mac Pro anymore more than they already have? It already creeping closer to a year late. The primary problem the Mac Pro is suffering from is viability; not enough folks buying it. Unless trying to be purposely destructive holding it back will far more likely kill off the product over the long run than return it to a healthy status.

There is no significant impact on the stock price whether it gets sold or dropped. A revised sandy bridge Mac Pro released summer 2012 would not have "saved" FY Q1's dramatic sang on Mac units sold. Perhaps cover minor fluctuations of iMacs sold, but "missing in action" for pratically the whole quarter, no.
I think Apple's mistreatment of the pro market overall is hurting their financials. The actual delta between expected profits and real profits was low enough that more pros buying both iMacs and Mac Pros, along with software, could have made a dent. At this point, Apple needs to do everything they can to expand the Mac's audience, and getting serious about pros again would be a good starting point.

I don't see a Mac Pro release taking Apple stock back into the 700s, but it could at least make the financials a little prettier.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 10:23 AM   #106
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I think Apple's mistreatment of the pro market overall is hurting their financials.
Hurting financials??? Eh? There is a difference between monopoly money and real money.

"... “We’re pleased to have generated over $23 billion in cash flow from operations during the quarter,” ..."
http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2013...d-Results.html

You folks have a completely and utterly warp sense of the notion of "hurting" assigning raking in $23B in a single quarter as being some kind of 'bad' outcome.

Apple had socked away $137B in cash and equivalents by the end of FY Q1 compared to having started the Q with $121B. Yearly Apple still has 10's of Billions of dollars coming more then they know what to do with (even after dividends , stock buybacks , etc .etc.). That's 'hurting' ???? That's actually in the context when the iMac sales were artificially suppressed to the tune of 700k units.

In monopoly money terms, the stock is down but if the stock price is disconnected from reality then there is little Apple should be deeply loosing sleep over. The iPad was not going to keep growing at high double and triple digits forever. iPhone growth was eventually going to plateau also.
Most of the speculation about Apple $700+ stock price is based upon some still mythical "TV revolution" or some other new iPad or iPhone sized product family spring up from the ground as another run away hit.

The traditional form factor PC market is maturing and flatting out. There is no "hyper growth" vehicle coming out of that. Apple can continue to cannibalize the sales of smaller, weaker PC players but that growth is long term coupled to that overall market growth.


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The actual delta between expected profits and real profits was low enough that more pros buying both iMacs and Mac Pros, along with software, could have made a dent.
Oh Apple is hurting because the profit margin went from 38.6 percent compared to 44.7 ? If read the transcript Cook said that the iPad mini has lower margin than typical margins they look for in a product ( '... the iPad mini gross margin is significantly below the corporate average ...' ) . That was probably the primary contributing cause to overall.

The iPad2 was left in partially to offset that (plus cover the distribution while mini ramps up to full production). However, the combination of the two drove the average selling price of iPads down. The Mac situation isn't the primary driver.

The stock is down in part because folks see the same thing happening on the iPhone side eventually. In order to compete in the market Apple is eventually going to have to give a bit on iPhone pricing. Microsoft has stopped shooting themselves in the head with Windows Phone 8. Similarly, RIM will likely stop the gratuitous bleeding off of share almost "for free" to iOS.


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At this point, Apple needs to do everything they can to expand the Mac's audience, and getting serious about pros again would be a good starting point.
Actually taking out some ads would be a start. If haven't noticed Apple really hasn't advertised Macs in almost two years. They've almost entirely relied on 'halo' effect to boost Mac sales. Once they solve the iMac supply problem it would not be hard to sell the whole Mac line up to those they are target by proactively seeking those folks. Maybe another "clown Microsoft" campaign ( instead of Vista leverage Windows 8). A campaign with better substance would be probably be better.

Mac Pro is not going to 'save' the Mac by itself. Never has, never will. The Mac portfolio would be a bit more robust if the Mac Pro is present and healthy. However, it isn't necessary for long term growth, profits, or health.
It is far closer to the 'hobby' status AppleTV was in several years ago. Interesting enough to do but not a strategic linchpin in the financial plan. As long as it grows and pays for itself it will remain interesting to do.

There is no "loss leader" Mac product that the larger margins for the Mac Pro to have to cover up. The top selling Apps on the Mac App store are primarily Apple apps that run extremely well on any Mac.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 05:20 PM   #107
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Originally Posted by deconstruct60 View Post
Hurting financials??? Eh? There is a difference between monopoly money and real money.

"... “We’re pleased to have generated over $23 billion in cash flow from operations during the quarter,” ..."
http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2013...d-Results.html

You folks have a completely and utterly warp sense of the notion of "hurting" assigning raking in $23B in a single quarter as being some kind of 'bad' outcome.

Apple had socked away $137B in cash and equivalents by the end of FY Q1 compared to having started the Q with $121B. Yearly Apple still has 10's of Billions of dollars coming more then they know what to do with (even after dividends , stock buybacks , etc .etc.). That's 'hurting' ???? That's actually in the context when the iMac sales were artificially suppressed to the tune of 700k units.

In monopoly money terms, the stock is down but if the stock price is disconnected from reality then there is little Apple should be deeply loosing sleep over. The iPad was not going to keep growing at high double and triple digits forever. iPhone growth was eventually going to plateau also.
Most of the speculation about Apple $700+ stock price is based upon some still mythical "TV revolution" or some other new iPad or iPhone sized product family spring up from the ground as another run away hit.

The traditional form factor PC market is maturing and flatting out. There is no "hyper growth" vehicle coming out of that. Apple can continue to cannibalize the sales of smaller, weaker PC players but that growth is long term coupled to that overall market growth.

Oh Apple is hurting because the profit margin went from 38.6 percent compared to 44.7 ? If read the transcript Cook said that the iPad mini has lower margin than typical margins they look for in a product ( '... the iPad mini gross margin is significantly below the corporate average ...' ) . That was probably the primary contributing cause to overall.
It has nothing to do with the profit numbers or profit margin. Mac shipments were down for the first quarter in years. Part of that has to do with the lack of pro equipment to counter the cannibalization on the consumer end by the iPad.

That's the sort of pattern investors look at which makes them concerned Apple has peaked.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 05:47 PM   #108
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I think Apple's mistreatment of the pro market overall is hurting their financials.
The Pro market is a sliver of a fraction of a piece of Apple's total revenues. I'd be surprised if Mac Pros made up more than 5% of Mac sales. You could probably remove all Mac Pro revenue from Apple's financials and not even notice the difference.

For the most recent quarter, Apple sold 47.8 million iPhones, 22.9 million iPads, 4.1 million Macs, and 12.7 million iPods. We know from tracking their sales breakdowns about 75% of Mac sales are laptops. Most of the remaining desktop sales are iMacs, meaning Apple sold, at most, a couple hundred thousand Mac Pros.

Desktop machines are on their way to being a niche, following mainframes, minicomputers and dedicated workstations. I hope Apple make another generation of the Mac Pro, but I won't be surprised if they don't.

Last edited by dpny; Jan 26, 2013 at 05:53 PM.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 09:15 PM   #109
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The Pro market is a sliver of a fraction of a piece of Apple's total revenues. I'd be surprised if Mac Pros made up more than 5% of Mac sales. You could probably remove all Mac Pro revenue from Apple's financials and not even notice the difference.
5% would have actually been enough to change the quarter over quarter loss to a gain.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 10:44 PM   #110
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5% would have actually been enough to change the quarter over quarter loss to a gain.
Probably not: 5% of sales doesn't equal 5% of revenue.
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Old Jan 26, 2013, 11:13 PM   #111
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Probably not: 5% of sales doesn't equal 5% of revenue.
I'm not talking revenue, I'm talking units shipped, which is the metric that they used to measure quarterly Mac shipments.

I'd assume if they did use revenue, pro users would be even more valuable as the margin on pros tends to be much higher.

But again, the number I'm talking about is quarter over quarter Mac shipments declining for the first time in the last almost 10 years. It has nothing to do with revenue or dollars.
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 03:20 AM   #112
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But again, the number I'm talking about is quarter over quarter Mac shipments declining for the first time in the last almost 10 years. It has nothing to do with revenue or dollars.
Also has nothing to do with the pro market. It had to do with this quarter having one less week than the last, and the iMac's not being available for the entire quarter. It's also a reflection of the general downward slope of PC sales, from which Apple has been largely immune until now. But that had to end some time.

The pro market ads almost nothing to Apple's financials. Look at the numbers yourself if you'd like: 75% of their revenue is just from iPhone/iPad. Of the remaining 25%, about half is from Mac sales. Of that, 75 to 80% is from laptop sales. So you're left with, at most, 25% of computer sales, most of which is iMacs and Mac Minis. To this add that a 13-inch MacBook Pro is almost as fast as the entry level Mac Pro 4,1 and 5,1s, and most people don't need to buy a desktop any more.

As much as we're all attached to our desktops--and I speak as someone who can't get rid of his G5--we have to acknowledge that desktops are far along the path to becoming a niche market for a very small segment of users who needs their power. It's not just Apple but the industry as a whole which is quickly moving to mobile computing, whether it's laptops, tablets or phones.
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 03:47 AM   #113
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...but what would happen if the jony I've iOS is rubbish? A competitor (Samsung/other like Bang n Olfusun) comes up with something better? The iPhone 5s,6,6s,7,7s are just repeating themselves, along with the ipad and everyone gets bored and sales drop

I think Apple should keep focused on what they had prior to the iPhone launch (when they dropped the 'computer' part of their name) and hang in here with mac - the 25% of their revenue is still several billions- they would be dumb to focus 100% on iOS which could go south.

For me the mp is nice for when I have lots of video rendering etc... But a smaller less power hungry box would do (I want a quite machine - not a hair dryer sound that plagues apples 'beautifully slim' machines)
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 11:57 AM   #114
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...but what would happen if the jony I've iOS is rubbish?
There are almost a billion iOS devices out in the world. I think we're past that phase.

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the 25% of their revenue is still several billions
It's not 25%. It's, at most, 25% of of 25% of 50% of 25%. . . that slice keeps getting smaller.

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they would be dumb to focus 100% on iOS which could go south.
Consumers have spoken. They want mobile computing. And, honestly, for most of the things I do outside of work I don't need more than a laptop/iPad.
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 12:00 PM   #115
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I'll take a giant box that sounds like a jet engine for all I care. I just want a new MacPro.
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 01:45 PM   #116
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5% would have actually been enough to change the quarter over quarter loss to a gain.
No it wouldn't. The drop in iMac unit sales was 700k. 5% of 5.1M macs is just 255k. That is still a net loss.

Mac Pro sales are likely much closer 1% (or below) than 5%. It wouldn't have made a difference. A refreshed, up-to-date Mac Pro might have doubled that 1%, but even with a imaginary 5x increase it still would be less than half of the shortfall.

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Old Jan 27, 2013, 03:36 PM   #117
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I'll take a giant box that sounds like a jet engine for all I care. I just want a new MacPro.
I have a G4 around here if you want to work and be deafened at the same time.

I want a new Mac Pro, too. I'm not arguing against one. I'm just saying we should be honest about what's happening to the market for powerful desktop machines: they're becoming tools specifically for a very small niche of users who need lots of cores/RAM/drives. As hardware progresses, that niche is getting smaller. Used to be you needed a G4/G5/Mac Pro to do serious print/pre-press work. Now, with iMacs are fast as they are, the only print people who really need towers are the retouchers. The same has happened with audio work. MacBook Pros have become so powerful it's feasible to ditch your tower and just use a laptop. As hardware gets more and more powerful, this will continue.

Look, twenty years ago you needed a $50,000 SGI box to do any serious 3D work. Where's SGI now?
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 05:28 PM   #118
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Professional Workstations aren't needed less and less as much as the number of professions that are getting larger and are covered with value added software that demands a workstation performance is shrinking.
Well, that's the same thing really. Workstations are needed less and less because most jobs that depended on CPU speed 10 years ago can get by with an iMac or Mini easily these days.
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 07:40 PM   #119
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Well, that's the same thing really. Workstations are needed less and less because most jobs that depended on CPU speed 10 years ago can get by with an iMac or Mini easily these days.
That doesn't mean there can't be new jobs that need high workloads. The blacksmith and horseshoe businesses went down with the advent of the automobile. That doesn't means the number of professions was stuck in neutral across that transition. Some businesses that made horse carriages transitioned over to making automobiles (or at least autobody chassis) . Those businesses tended to survive and flourish longer.

The ghetto of high end Fortune 500 video and audio content is a dead growth boat anchor on the Mac Pro's current prospects. There is a need just for new hardware but also wider frontiers for the Mac Pro to expand into.
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Old Jan 27, 2013, 07:59 PM   #120
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The ghetto of high end Fortune 500 video and audio content is a dead growth boat anchor on the Mac Pro's current prospects. There is a need just for new hardware but also wider frontiers for the Mac Pro to expand into.
Fine, but what?

Very few pieces of software out there can really make use of more than once core, and those which can are pretty much limited to things the MP already does: audio, video, 3D, scientific visualization and the like. Even Adobe's CS apps are all almost entirely single-threaded. In Photoshop you're better off with one, really fast core and lots of RAM than you are with four fast cores and less RAM.

We've reached a point where the hardware has leapt past the software, and leapt past the things people use computers for. The vast majority of computer use, even in business, is limited to the mail, web and the MS Office--spreadsheets, word processing and Powerpoint. This is why corporations can buy thousands of POS PCs at a pop use them until they die, and why laptops are more than most people need.

The things which require really heavy lifting, like CFD or FEA, get run on mainframes or cheap Linux clusters.

So, into what should the MP, or desktops in general, expand?
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Old Jan 28, 2013, 11:31 PM   #121
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The death of a product line?

I'll join the ranks of those who clamor for new MacPros cognizant that the chance of new machines is getting smaller. I simply don't hold much trust in the claims that new machines are coming. While advances in other devices is impressive, I'm not going to be replacing our editing and compositing machines with Mac Mini, MacBook Pro or iMac. Sigh. These are great machines but just not my preferred tools for a video suite.
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 07:36 AM   #122
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New rumor from France indicates spring 2013 for the refresh:

Original article on MacGeneration

Google Translate link for english speakers
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 08:42 AM   #123
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the development of Ati 7xxx drivers is an indication of something new !
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 03:51 PM   #124
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I've been wondering if perhaps Apple could do Thunderbolt by rendering on a GPU, and copying the output back to an integrated card.

That would mean no waiting on GPU makers to adopt Thunderbolt, and they could deliver sooner than later. And for server uses they could use just an integrated card.

OS X already has the software support to render on one card and display on another, they'd just have to write the automagic. There might be a negligible latency introduced, but nothing horrible.
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 09:04 PM   #125
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I've been wondering if perhaps Apple could do Thunderbolt by rendering on a GPU, and copying the output back to an integrated card.
vGPU is commonly present on the mainstream Windows PC motherboard offerings with thunderbolt. (mostly just by bundling http://www.lucidlogix.com/product-virtu-universal.html or
http://www.lucidlogix.com/product-virtu-mvp.shtml )


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OS X already has the software support to render on one card and display on another, they'd just have to write the automagic. There might be a negligible latency introduced, but nothing horrible.
Conceptually not too much different than support Crossfire/SLI and yet they haven't done that.

Depends. It wouldn't be a surprising OS X 10.10 or 10.11 feature, but short term it really isn't necessary. Having the embedded GPU is the core elements of the solution.

Given that FCPX freaks out if split the OpenCL work and the windows over multiple graphics cards I don't think this is something they can do sooner rather than later.
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