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Old Jun 25, 2013, 03:44 PM   #1
johngwheeler
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Pricing and Thunderbolt peripherals will be critical to Mac Pro success

From what I've read over the last couple of weeks it seems 2 factors stand out as being critical to the success of the new Mac Pro:

1) Pricing: I suspect Apple will try very hard to make an entry level MP attractive to as wide a user base as possible.

> $3000: it will be limited to a very small number of people, probably working in video production, who see dual-GPUs as value for money.

$2500-3000: Some wider interest from professionals in a number of fields, but limited sales

$2000-2500: this will appeal to a lot of people who just want a high-end desktop, and need a bit more power than an iMac / MacMini / MBP can provide. I fall into this category (software development).

If Apple can get it closer to $2000 than $2500, they will do well. I don't see it coming in under $2000 unless they make the entry level spec very close to the iMac (e.g. 4 core, 8MB, 128GB SSD).

2) Thunderbolt peripherals.

There is still a very limited selection of TB peripherals and enclosures and the prices are off-putting. The new MP needs to launch with some reasonably priced standard peripherals (single disks, small & medium arrays, PCI-e expansion chassis).

TB is still worrying a few people, I think, in terms of price, availability and future viability. I still can't find a reasonably priced external enclosure for a 2.5" SATA SSD.

The future will tell!
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 04:01 PM   #2
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I agree - pricing and TB options are critical. But I would fall over in a dead faint if pricing came in below $2499.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 04:04 PM   #3
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There is nothing to the nMP besides TB, so yeah, reasonably priced high performing TB peripherals being important to success is an understatement.
It's like buying a car but you just buy the engine first. I know the whole car used to cost you $2500.00. This new engine costs $2500.00 but it is 'Expandable'. You can add stuff like a steering wheel (I know there is only 1 manufacturer right now of wheels but...) You might need some seats and belts. Oh yeah. Maybe need a gear box of some kind. We have 3 companies that will sell you wheels. Lucky you. More will jump on board. "Trust Us".
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 04:19 PM   #4
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I agree that price is critical.

I also love the new Mac Pro because it will force people to adopt Thunderbolt, and hopefully drive costs down of TB devices.

I would throw out a random percentage that 90% of anything someone needs is already available, just with a slight price premium.

I think the new MP will be fine for anyone except maybe someone doing 4k 3D work. And even then, it might work fine for that with a high end configuration.

----------

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Originally Posted by tamvly View Post
I agree - pricing and TB options are critical. But I would fall over in a dead faint if pricing came in below $2499.
Well, it might be a low end 6 core config with 1 video card, 8GB RAM, and 128GB SSD.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 04:29 PM   #5
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Aside from pricing and distribution, timetable is also crucial.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 06:12 PM   #6
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Well, it might be a low end 6 core config with 1 video card, 8GB RAM, and 128GB SSD.
If it is, I'll be fainting.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 06:36 PM   #7
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I also love the new Mac Pro because it will force people to adopt Thunderbolt, and hopefully drive costs down of TB devices.

I would throw out a random percentage that 90% of anything someone needs is already available, just with a slight price premium.
Being forced into Thunderbolt is the part I *don't* like. If people were being forced to adopt mini-SAS instead of TB, it would benefit me, but upset a lot of others who don't have mini-SAS ports. Being forced into things seems to be the main problem.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 06:43 PM   #8
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Being forced into Thunderbolt is the part I *don't* like. If people were being forced to adopt mini-SAS instead of TB, it would benefit me, but upset a lot of others who don't have mini-SAS ports. Being forced into things seems to be the main problem.
http://www.attotech.com/products/pro...=TLSH-1068-D00

I get what you're saying, but you can still have your mini SAS & Thunderbolt.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 06:53 PM   #9
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Aside from pricing and distribution, timetable is also crucial.
Good point .

Apple has until the release of the MP 6.1 to convince 3rd party manufactureres to cater to their new TB thing .
To be sold at Firewire prices .
Cables, too .

It didn't happen in the past 3 years, though .
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 06:54 PM   #10
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Exactly my point. Look at that price, just to use what I already have.

I've been luckier than some in the fact that my 2009 Mac Pro has been able to keep up with current tech by means of RAM, CPU, firmware, GPU and other PCIe card upgrades such as USB 3.0 and eSATA... and even an internal BD-R.

It's safe to say Apple doesn't like the idea of my purchase in 2009 being better than what they sell in 2013, so they made an effort to force us all to spend more money, more often. They're in the business of taking our money, with a side effect of making neat stuff. The only reason to applaud forcing everyone to spend more money is if you're one of the 1% of people profiting from it.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:04 PM   #11
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That's insane. For $900, you get a device that just connects things. It doesn't even hold anything.
I guess I'm just too old but I really don't understand what you people are so happy about.
You must all have more money than god.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:14 PM   #12
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That's insane. For $900, you get a device that just connects things. It doesn't even hold anything.
I guess I'm just too old but I really don't understand what you people are so happy about.
You must all have more money than god.
it's $900 dollars to connect to tens of thousands of dollars worth of equipment. big studios, for example, not very many people using them for a home network
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:16 PM   #13
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Good point .

Apple has until the release of the MP 6.1 to convince 3rd party manufactureres to cater to their new TB thing .
To be sold at Firewire prices .
Cables, too .

It didn't happen in the past 3 years, though .
Often it seems it's peripherals that costs an equal amount even without TB, take the Pegasus RAID as an example. You can get a single 1TB drive with Thunderbolt for $199 from OWC.

http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Buffalo/HDPA1.0TU3/
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:19 PM   #14
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I think just price, not peripherals.

While there aren't a huge amount of TB peripherals presently there are plenty. Lots of disk storage choices and now two legacy port choices (Belkin and Matrox), plus a bunch of specialty ones including PCI expansion. They aren't cheap but most of what you would expect is available.

I agree with OP that $2k is likely. The present MP sticks out like a sore thumb in the Apple lineup. Only appeals to a small minority and priced for that too. Just dropping the bottom price down to $2k ties it in perfectly with the rest of them. And looking at the likely BOM it seems to be a no brainer.

Those who look at retail FirePro prices and think that automatically means expensive Mac Pro have no idea of how their pricing power works. Additionally those who think Apple is greedy are right, but they seem to have no understanding of the concept of margins and volumes. With this tiny thing they can have greater margins than with the old MP and higher volumes all at a lower price point.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:21 PM   #15
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Often it seems it's peripherals that costs an equal amount even without TB, take the Pegasus RAID as an example. You can get a single 1TB drive with Thunderbolt for $199 from OWC.

http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Buffalo/HDPA1.0TU3/
Not often. You have posted the absolute best case scenario ever seen.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:23 PM   #16
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Not often. You have posted the absolute best case scenario ever seen.
Sorry.

The idea was to show that Thunderbolt in itself does not have to come at a high price. Of course running a single drive over Thunderbolt is not taking advantage of the available throughput, the type of gear that does tend to cost more than $199, with or without Thunderbolt.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:39 PM   #17
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Sorry.

The idea was to show that Thunderbolt in itself does not have to come at a high price. Of course running a single drive over Thunderbolt is not taking advantage of the available throughput, the type of gear that does tend to cost more than $199, with or without Thunderbolt.
Great Example.

a 2.5" 1TB drive running at 5400 rpm for $200

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...pk=1tb%20drive

Same drive. but $92

So slightly more than 100% markup for the "convenience" of TB. Awesome.

But you are right about something, by putting a slacker 5400 rpm drive in there, no chance that the interface will slow it down.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:49 PM   #18
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Great Example.

a 2.5" 1TB drive running at 5400 rpm for $200

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...pk=1tb%20drive

Same drive. but $92
Yeah, let's compare it to a naked drive..

You forgot the enclosure and dual interface, so not the same. Something like this is closer:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822205185
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:53 PM   #19
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Yeah, let's compare it to a naked drive..

You forgot the enclosure and dual interface, so not the same. Something like this is closer:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16822205185
I just fell out of my chair laughing.

You don't get it, really, do you?

That "naked drive" would plug right inside a current Mac Pro.

No 3rd party to force a markup.

You are doing a WONDERFUL job of proving the other side of your argument.

Quit while you're behind.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 07:58 PM   #20
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I just fell out of my chair laughing.

You don't get it, really, do you?
I responded to a post who made a comparison to Firewire peripherals, that's the context here.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 08:16 PM   #21
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And by trying to prove one thing, you proved the larger argument in a conclusive fashion. You have powers of reasoning you didn't even know about. Congrats !!!!
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 08:18 PM   #22
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And by trying to prove one thing, you proved the larger argument in a conclusive fashion. You have powers of reasoning you didn't even know about. Congrats !!!!
You are participating in a thread about Thunderbolt adoption, the premise in the first post is that among other things the price needs to come down. I responded to a post that compared it to Firewire peripherals, that's the context here. A comparisson to internal anything is completely out of place.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 08:45 PM   #23
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Exactly my point. Look at that price, just to use what I already have.

I've been luckier than some in the fact that my 2009 Mac Pro has been able to keep up with current tech by means of RAM, CPU, firmware, GPU and other PCIe card upgrades such as USB 3.0 and eSATA... and even an internal BD-R.

It's safe to say Apple doesn't like the idea of my purchase in 2009 being better than what they sell in 2013, so they made an effort to force us all to spend more money, more often. They're in the business of taking our money, with a side effect of making neat stuff. The only reason to applaud forcing everyone to spend more money is if you're one of the 1% of people profiting from it.
If what you have is fine, you don't have to upgrade to a new Mac Pro immediately. Sure, nobody wants to spend $900 on a glorified adapter, but it is there, and it may come down in price in the future.

Things cost money when you buy high end equipment, but to be fair, you're only 1% of the 5% of people using Mac Pro's that even need that.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 08:48 PM   #24
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You are participating in a thread about Thunderbolt adoption, the premise in the first post is that among other things the price needs to come down. I responded to a post that compared it to Firewire peripherals, that's the context here. A comparisson to internal anything is completely out of place.
You're right again, there is no way that anything needlessly moved external that could be hooked up for free internally stands a chance of competing. "Completely out of place", which is where Apple has moved everything.

10 points, Ace.
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Old Jun 25, 2013, 09:54 PM   #25
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Being forced into Thunderbolt is the part I *don't* like. If people were being forced to adopt mini-SAS instead of TB, it would benefit me, but upset a lot of others who don't have mini-SAS ports. Being forced into things seems to be the main problem.
Agreed, the forcing aspect doesn't sit well with me either -- especially since, in this case, TB is still expensive and a lot less established in comparison to mini-SAS and PCIe.
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