$1,400 > $970 (Mac Pro 2.66 GHz - Mac Pro 2.26 GHz)???

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by irrªtiºnal, Sep 24, 2009.

  1. irrªtiºnal macrumors member


    Dec 15, 2005
    Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intel_Nehalem

    I'm aware that this topic has been ABUNDANTLY discussed all over the place. I don't want to be condemmed of being naïve or for trolling around... but it's difficult not to complain about the following:

    Apple charges $1,400 USD just to do the processor upgrade from 2.26 GHz to 2.66 GHz.

    The cost of two 2.66 GHz X5550 Xeons, which is what the 8-core Mac Pro uses, as per 1K unit prices, is given as follows:

    2 x 2.66 GHz X5550 = 2 x $858 = $1,716 USD
    The cost of two 2.26 GHz E5520/L5520 Xeons is:

    2 x 2.26 GHz E5520 = 2 x $373 = $746 USD   ---> Raw cost of upgrade: $970 USD
    2 x 2.26 GHz L5520 = 2 x $530 = $1,060 USD ---> Raw cost of upgrade: $656 USD
    According to my research the Mac Pro 2.26 GHz uses E5520. Hence Apple is keeping the difference of $1,400 - $970 = $430 USD.

    Is this calculation correct or am I missing something else??? Please explain...
  2. tribe3 macrumors 6502

    Nov 1, 2005
    Vienna, VA - USA
  3. macinfojunkie macrumors regular


    Jun 4, 2005
    The power of monopoly. The best business model :D
  4. Infrared macrumors 68000


    Mar 28, 2007
    There's no swap :)
  5. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    Your calcualtion is correct. Things to take in to account:

    Companies want to make a profit on upgrades.

    For Apple they would need to charge more than the difference between the listed prices as they will likely receive discounts on the common 2.66GHz Xeon 3520 and 2.26GHz e5520 for large volume rather than the same percentage across the board. They would want to at least maintain the same profit margin.

    When you factor in customers being willing to pay then you get companies charging a lot for processor upgrades.
  6. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    It's a business model shared by just about every computer manufacturer; check out the configurations by Dell and HP; same expensive upgrade prices.
  7. velocityg4 macrumors 601


    Dec 19, 2004
    One of the worst offenses I recall was when Core 2 Duo first came out. They would charge huge fees to upgrade from the high end Pentium 4 to a low end Core 2 Duo. When those same high end Pentium 4's were selling at a higher price than the low end core 2's.

    As others said, this is normal practice for the manufacturers.

    What does irk me some with the current Nehelem Mac Pro's. Is how much they increased the prices beyond the do it yourself market costs. With the 2006 and 2008 Mac Pro's when they first came out it was cheaper to buy the Mac Pro than use the same server grade parts to build it yourself. However, the Nehelem Mac Pro's cost a lot more from Apple than building the same parts yourself.
  8. irrªtiºnal thread starter macrumors member


    Dec 15, 2005
    I visited Intel's ARK site and found some new numbers: http://ark.intel.com/ProductCollection.aspx?familyID=594. You can visit the page for X5550 directly: http://ark.intel.com/Product.aspx?id=37106&processor=X5550&spec-codes=SLBF5

    Apparently Wikipedia's 1K unit prices are $100 less than what Intel advertises. According to the sheet, the X5550 has a price of $958.00. The revised cost for two 2.66 GHz X5550 Xeons is therefore:

    2 x 2.66 GHz X5550 = 2 x $958 = $1,916 USD
    The E5520 has still the same price of $373. Thus:

    2 x 2.26 GHz E5520 = 2 x $373 = $746 USD
    Therefore, the "raw" cost of upgrade ought to be: $1,916 - $746 = $1170 USD.

    And the new adjusted "Apple profit margin" is: $1,400 - $1170 = $230 USD.

    OK, I think $230 USD doesn't seem "THAT" preposterous anymore...
  9. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    Keep in mind, that the SP system and DP models use different daughter boards, and have a second heat sink as well. ;)

    So it's not just take the CPU's cost difference into account. That said, Apple is too expensive on the '09's IMO. The '08's are the best cost/performance system they've released, and it's comparable in performance, as the cores are the same technology. The architectural differences are to do with the Integrated Memory Controller for DDR3 and the QPI interface for CPU to chipset communications.

    Neither is all that important, as the software can't use it. Very few applications can utilize triple channel DDR3, and those are primarily (if not exclusively) for server usage.

    I'd recommend going for a faster clocked '08, as it will actually do better with single threaded apps, and at least on par on multi-threaded ones, depending on usage. It's also better for internal 3rd party RAID controllers (if you're interested), as you can just move the iPass cable from the logic board to the card.

    It contains EFI64 firmware, so you'll be able to use future graphics cards and versions of OS X (when they become pure 64 bit), and not be left behind, as the '06 & '07 owners are already beginning to experience (currently on graphics cards), and soon will be for OS X versions.

    Apple doesn't seem to be interested in providing an EFI64 firmware version for owners of those systems, and they're only 3yrs old so far. That's pitiful for server grade hardware.

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