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What would a BYOM desktop between the mini and Mac Pro look like?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by BurtonCCC, Mar 19, 2007.

  1. macrumors 65816

    BurtonCCC

    #1
    My quick five-minute take on it.

    On the inside:
    Dual Xeons.
    Dual display support.
    More ports, more ports, more ports.
    Dual slot-loading SuperDrives.
    Removable and upgradeable graphics.

    Daniel.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. macrumors 68020

    pknz

    #2
    Ok, so you want a Mac Pro in a smaller case?
     
  3. Demi-God (Moderator emeritus)

    EricNau

    #3
    Sorry, but that's plain ugly (and unrealistic - you can't put those components in a case with limited cooling).
     
  4. macrumors 604

    zap2

    #4
    Dual Xeons? No way...those are to much money and to hot you the smal case you gave.


    There is no room for a Consumer Desktop is Apple's current line up...iMac have 1k-2k, Mac Mini have Sub 1k and Mac Pro has 2.5K+. If you put its bewteen the iMac and Mac Pro, they price difference would be about 200USD from a much better computer. Under 1K would make it to close to the Mini, and start to eat the Mini's sales. The only possible spot would be for Apple to drop the low end 17'' iMac, and sell the consumer tower for 1099 , and drop Mini prices down to 499 and 699
     
  5. macrumors 68040

    iW00t

    #5
    Rather than having the Mac Mini come in just 2 configurations, they should just have 2 logic board types and allow buyers to select and match processors.

    So on one hand they have logic boards with integrated graphics for budget users, on the other hand they have boards with something like a x1300 for slightly more $ users.

    Also having the ability to customise the processors in these will eliminate the whole waiting for update nonsense altogether. I am starting to get quite sick of playing Apple's stupid games. People want to buy now, people have the money, why force them to wait?
     
  6. macrumors 68040

    iW00t

    #6
    Let me summarise it for you.

    Ferrari. RRP less than a Ford Pinto.
     
  7. macrumors 68000

    FleurDuMal

    #7
    Why would a consumer tower have two SuperDrives?

    Anyway, ain't gonna happen. Not until Apple overhaul their product line.
     
  8. macrumors 68030

    BenRoethig

    #8
    Consumers are more likely to use twin optical drives than the pros. It's very handy to have a game or piece of software you use frequently in the bottom drive while using the primary for burning and general use items.
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    #9
    well, if that CD/DVD is used *that* often the user might as well keep it handy as a ISO file on the hard drive, right?

    As for the rest of the specs, I agree, they might be too close to the Mac Pro to make this a reasonable business proposition...
    Perhaps this mac semi-pro could be built like 2 Minis stacked up. The first box would fit the graphics card (hot air would flow to the top, I guess...), the 2nd box at the bottom would be the rest of the computer.
     
  10. macrumors 68030

    BenRoethig

    #10
    Considering that prosumer machines out number professional workstation greatly, I think it would make a very wise business propositions. Apple's "cripple and move up" strategy for the desktops looses a lot of potential users.
     
  11. JDN
    macrumors 6502a

    #11
    This is becoming something of an age old topic/discussion on these forums.

    I agree that Apple won't add another model to the line up of a long time to come, but i would still like to see one.

    It could be Cube sized, makes sense. But then have the same processor options as the iMac and one super drive. The main thing i think people want to see is some upgradeability. Upgradeable graphics card, and an extra hard drive bay.
     
  12. macrumors 68030

    BenRoethig

    #12
    It didn't use to be, Apple used to have some of the best prosumer towers on the planet. Since then the entry level desktops (I consider the AIO to be it's own category) prices have risen close to $1000 since the MDD G4s to the highest point since the the 600 series PowerPCs. Apple has been literally pricing some long time users right off the platform. The MacPro is way outside my budget and the iMac isn't something that interests me at all, so where am I? I'd be lying if I didn't say I was intrigued by some of the hardware options on the PC side.
     
  13. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    #13
    Agree with the general consensus that that's not only unrealistic in the sense of why would Apple do it, but there's no way way to get it into a case a whole lot smaller than the current Mac Pro is (well, the Mac Pro is pretty huge, but that machine couldn't be much smaller). Plus, it would cost a fortune.

    I disagree COMPLETELY. There's LOTS of room for another machine in the line up. Something to sell to mini owners, for one. People look at the current line up all wrong. The mini and the Pro are the only two REAL desktop models, and there's a $1200 gap between them.

    The iMac is merely the ultimate desktop replacement laptop. Think about it. It's a laptop with a GIANT screen, a full sized HDD, and no battery.

    There's a gap in the pricing structure right where you pointed out, as well. That $999 + options range is perfect for a consumer tower. You can get a 17" iMac for that price, OR you can get this more configurable tower with out a display. It's actually very Apple-like marketing.

    That would be alright, but not solve the ultimate problem with the mini's: Laptop components. Ya, a mini with an x1300 would be OK now, but I'd much rather pay a few hundred extra so I can drop in a bigger, cheaper HDD in a year or two, a new GPU in two or three years, etc.

    I agree with this. The Mac Pro, no matter how I slice it is a terrible fit for me. I don't need quad cores. I don't need 5 HDDs (well, it'd be nice to have that option, but not at that price or the giant case). I CAN'T spend $2000 on a new computer, either. I DEFINITELY can't spend what they are asking for that RAM. I have no need for an integrated LCD, either. Nor do I have any desire to buy what I feel is a flawed design (the iMac G5 design is just a bad idea, imo).

    I think what will happen is the Mac Pro will get a new case design, making it a bit smaller and less expensive (more plastic, less aluminum, etc). They will continue to offer a quad core Xeon based system, similar to what they have right now but with standard speed bumbs, but they will also offer a "Mac Pro" with a C2D and similar base specs to the iMac. Keep the configurable setup they are using now for the Mac Pro's, just with two starting points. Starting price $1100 or 1200, because it's in the Mac Pro case. If they put it in it's own box they would go down $100.
     
  14. macrumors 68030

    BenRoethig

    #14
    I disagree COMPLETELY. There's LOTS of room for another machine in the line up. Something to sell to mini owners, for one. People look at the current line up all wrong. The mini and the Pro are the only two REAL desktop models, and there's a $1200 gap between them.

    The iMac is merely the ultimate desktop replacement laptop. Think about it. It's a laptop with a GIANT screen, a full sized HDD, and no battery.

    There's a gap in the pricing structure right where you pointed out, as well. That $999 + options range is perfect for a consumer tower. You can get a 17" iMac for that price, OR you can get this more configurable tower with out a display. It's actually very Apple-like marketing. [/quote]

    That's what they used to do. The single CPU G5 was the iMac's U3L platform fitted to a tower form.

    The iMac isn't a bad design it's just aimed at consumers or other who want a set up in go machine. The mistake is trying to push it on the prosumer crowd.

    I don't know how much smaller it can get. It's pretty lean for what it does. Plus, the last time they redesigned the tower, they came up with a design that was larger and less practical than the one it replaced. It took the Mac Pro to reach and surpass the MDD G4.
     
  15. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    #15
    Yup, the single G5 PowerMac was a pretty decent buy, at the time. $1400 or so if I recall?

    The MacPro is HUGE. We've got one at work, and it's a big computer. There's a lot of space in there that you could take out... go to just room for 2 HDDs, not 4 or 5 or whatever it is, drop one of the optical drives... a machine built around the C2D would be smaller, as it's a single CPU, not two, less power requirements, so small PSU and less need for ventilation, etc.

    Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't the MacPro case exactly the same as the PowerMac G5 case?
     
  16. macrumors 601

    eXan

    #16
    Yes, it has the same dimentions, its just heavier
     
  17. macrumors 68000

    chaosbunny

    #17
    My quick ten-minute take on it.

    NewCube.jpg
     
  18. macrumors 68020

    miloblithe

    #18
    The question for Apple is one of gains vrs losses. I think that a smaller tower would help them gain new customers and especially be more attactive to businesses. But iMacs are probably easier to sell at the price points Apple wants. Apple is perfectly content to sell fewer high-margin machines if the alternative is to sell more low-margin machines and make less in total profits.

    From me, they have little to gain by this move (except my gratitude). I'm going to buy another Mac as my next computer, virtually regardless of what models Apple makes available. I am currently torn between the mini (I prefer the price) and the iMac (I like having two screens and like the idea of the full size HD and graphics card). If the option were available, I'd buy a mid-tower and then probably another Dell monitor. Why would Apple prefer that?
     
  19. macrumors regular

    #19
    Can't we just have a Mac Pro with a Core 2 Duo (x2 possibly) and DDR2? :(
     
  20. macrumors 68000

    chaosbunny

    #20
    Well, I'm torn between a 17" iMac and a Mac Pro. I have a 21" Eizo monitor that's way better than any iMacs screen, so why pay for a large screen I do not need for slightly better performance?

    The question is, drop less money and replace it after 2 years, or drop more money and keep it for 4-5 years? The ideal option would be, drop a little more than less money and keep it for 3-4 years.^^

    Dual 2,6 or 3 ghz, and an option for a 512 mb gfx card. For 1500 - 1700 € maximum.
     
  21. macrumors 68030

    BenRoethig

    #21
    Outside the Mac crowd, it's pretty hard to sell a machine such as the iMac at those prices. The intended audience is below it price wise and for the users who can afford it, the lack of expansion and credible graphics options makes it almost a non-starter. That's why you see pretty much all the switcher gain come by way of laptop.

    The more of the PC prosumers they get, the more people they advise would get the 17" iMac or the eMac instead of a HP or Dell.
     
  22. macrumors 68030

    BenRoethig

    #22
    That would make way too much sense.
     
  23. macrumors 68040

    Pressure

    #23
    Core 2 Duo processors cannot be run in tandem like their Xeon brethren.

    While I agree that Apple could quite easily make a machine that uses Core 2 Duo E6xx0 processors with DDR2 memory it would instantly kill some of their iMac sales.
    On the other hand they would get a much larger market penetration because that unit would sell like hot cakes.

    I suppose they could make a slimmed down Mac Pro tower that had slightly smaller dimensions for this but since this is Apple the starting price would be around $1499 (I do believe a lot of people would still buy it though).

    My ugly hack...although disregard two drive bays.

    [​IMG]

    I can see it happen as Intel should release E6420 and E6320 and other processors in the coming month.
     
  24. macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    #24
    I like that. I'd buy it! :D

    I just don't get how anyone thinks a headless system would "kill iMac sales" or that even if it did it would matter.

    Let's just assume that people who would have bought an iMac would buy this instead (which is an extremely faulty assumption). So what? Apple sells them a machine with about the same profit margin either way.

    The only sales it would hurt are the mini, which wouldn't matter since it'd be a higher profit machine anyways, and the Mac Pro, which would probably take a slight beating from people who justified the expense of the machine because it was the only option to get what they wanted.

    The latter would be offset by people who "upgraded" from the mini to the midrange tower, or bought a Mac who wouldn't have otherwise.
     
  25. macrumors newbie

    #25
    Hi Everyone!!

    First post on this board, although I've been a lurker for a couple of months. I don't own an Apple machine right now, but I plan to have one by the end of June (depends on when the updates come through). I haven't decided on a Pro or iMac yet. For me the iMac is a little underpowered (specifically in the video card area), and the Mac Pro is WAY over powered.

    Since we're just making guesses right now, why not think outside the box.....literally. How about a set of component systems (based on the mini form factor) that the user could just stack together to upgrade the system. For example, you could buy base mini system and the upgraded video card would be in a similar enclosure that simply stacks onto the base system....like (dare I say it) LEGOS!!

    You want 2 processors? Buy two minis and stack them. You want two processors and an updated video card? Buy two minis and a video card enclosure....and stack those babies!! Extra hard drive? Stack it!! Or just buy a USB/Firewire drive.

    Just for kicks, Let's say the mini stackers run about $900 for the base system, then add $500 for an upgraded video card....total system about $1400 and it's in a form factor that's about 4 inches tall and 6.5" in the other dimensions. Hello cube. Plus you just made upgrading your system easy enough for the average person to do it.

    I know the interface technology doesn't exist right now, but I bet it isn't impossible to do.

    Thanks for listening to a future Apple user who has no real OSX experience.
     

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