2013 Mac Pro. Wait or buy now?

IamDario

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jul 30, 2014
9
2
I've been in the market for a new Mac for a couple of months now but I've been hesitant to pull the trigger on the new Mac Pro. My biggest concern is the fact that it took Apple a while to start processing most of the orders. I'm conflicted, do I wait for the next Intel processor and an Apple upgrade or is that to far off? What are your thoughts?
 

VirtualRain

macrumors 603
Aug 1, 2008
6,304
114
Vancouver, BC
Buy one when you need one. It's pretty easy.
Good advice. Apple could rev the Mac Pro in 6 months (when new CPUs are due from Intel) or they could choose not to update it for another year or two. There's plenty of historical evidence to support either outcome being entirely possible.
 

N19h7m4r3

macrumors 65816
Dec 15, 2012
1,191
8
Jester said it all. If you Need the new machine, get it. If you don't, you can wait.

If it's a case of needing it for work, it's a no brainer really. Buy it, then get the revision and sell the old one.
 

deconstruct60

macrumors 604
Mar 10, 2009
7,979
1,172
My biggest concern is the fact that it took Apple a while to start processing most of the orders.?
Apple didn't wait to start processing orders. The bigger factor was that the orders outnumber what they could make. Most earlier orders got down before orders that came after.

Is the initial demand bubble for the next Mac Pro going to generate the same level of mismatch between supply and demand? Probably not. Will folks be able to order any configuration and have it shipped in 24 hours on day one. Again probably not. There will be a mismatch but it likely won't be nearly as long.

Several factors.

1. "If need it buy it". A huge chunk of folks who needed a Mac Pro have now bought one. The vast majority are not going to turn around in the next 6-12 months and buy a replacement (and retire what they are working on. )

The new one will be "better", but far more so relative to the Mac Pro 2006-2012 models than the 2013 one. And way past any Power Mac stranglers and anything else in the Mac product catalog prior to this point.


2. Minus the MP 2012 'speed bump', the last major update was 3 years previous (2010) before the MP 2013. That is an unusual amount of pent up demand. ( That was no where near 'normal' for Apple. ). The longer the gap the higher the initial demand bubble will be.

There isn't much of a good reason for Apple to go much further than 12 months from now. All the major internal components would have refreshed by then ( actually sooner). The 'major redesign' excuse isn't going to fly. Furthermore, A more affordable 6 & 8 core would only help boost sales. If Apple is trying to intentionally kill the Mac Pro going back down the rabbit-hole and waiting 'years' to do an update is one sure fire way to do it.


3. For most of 2013 the Mac Pro was pulled from the EU market. Even folks trying to follow "If need it, buy it" couldn't do it. That incrementally added on top of the normal demand. It is very doubtful this new Mac Pro is going to be banned and pulled from the market any time before replacement.



Is Apple going to contract for a larger factory capacity to minimize the initial demand bubble? Probably not. If Apple just spends an extra 3-4 weeks building standard configs ahead of time ( e.g., start in Nov and launch in late-January/early-February ) it would be even less of an issue.
 

RoastingPig

macrumors 68000
Jul 23, 2012
1,605
62
SoCal
the only thing i could see beneficial in the new mac pro wich is not even know to be real yet is thunderbolt 3.0 with external gpu support. either than that the usb 3.0 being native on haswell-e should help the usb performance. hawaii based firepros could also be a little faster in opencl related task .
 

MMcCraryNJ

macrumors 6502
Oct 18, 2012
265
42
I'm personally waiting for the Haswell refresh myself. But nobody can tell you what's right for you. The information to make an informed decision is already out there...Intel plans to have Haswell-EP released in Q3. Could be anytime from now until the end of September. Other vendors that are using the same chips will likely have systems out by October/November (or at least, able to be ordered). The timeframes line up for a possible refresh announcement at the Yosemite event. Or Apple could wait the full year and do it in December for shipping in January. Since the redesign itself is new, I'm not expecting some crazy new features like Thunderbolt 3. Updated processors and GPUs for sure.

I'm prepared to wait until March, even though I feel it will be a lot sooner than that. But I also have a fully maxed out 2012 cMBP that, for the most part, is working well for me in the interim.
 

VirtualRain

macrumors 603
Aug 1, 2008
6,304
114
Vancouver, BC
2013 Mac Pro. Wait or buy now?

I'm personally waiting for the Haswell refresh myself. But nobody can tell you what's right for you. The information to make an informed decision is already out there...Intel plans to have Haswell-EP released in Q3. Could be anytime from now until the end of September. Other vendors that are using the same chips will likely have systems out by October/November (or at least, able to be ordered). The timeframes line up for a possible refresh announcement at the Yosemite event. Or Apple could wait the full year and do it in December for shipping in January. Since the redesign itself is new, I'm not expecting some crazy new features like Thunderbolt 3. Updated processors and GPUs for sure.



I'm prepared to wait until March, even though I feel it will be a lot sooner than that. But I also have a fully maxed out 2012 cMBP that, for the most part, is working well for me in the interim.

It's very possible that Apple might skip every other generation of CPU on the Mac Pro or even couple updates to GPU tech instead of Intel's CPU release schedule...

These days, a CPU bump may not be worth a release cycle on a low volume product like this and CPU bumps are getting less and less impactful anyway (GPU updates probably have more impact to most nMP buyers).

And the Mac Pro just may not be a top priority for Apple (compared to higher volume hardware that needs refreshing more often or unseen hardware gearing up for release). Consider the Mac Mini for example. You would think it would have seen a Haswell update ages ago.
 

kacl780tr

macrumors newbie
Aug 25, 2011
6
0
My understanding is that the Haswell refresh has more to do with the chipset than the processor.

For example, the new chipset has on-board USB 3, eliminating the need for an additional chip.

There's also the possibility of HDMI 2.0.

On that note, does anyone know anything about a Displayport update?

For my part, mainly due to not needing it *right now*, I'm waiting for the refresh.

Cheers,
 

MacProCard

macrumors 6502
Jun 3, 2014
299
13
Just like the recent update to the rMBP was minimal. I suspect the same will be the case for the nMP, if any. It wouldn't make much sense to change anything now until after Christmas. And it sure wouldn't make sense to announce new future changes and kill the existing supplies on hand. I suspect this will be one of the hottest gifts for the season.

I wouldn't put much into the fact that some people think they need to update this year for fear of losing the "pro" market. I don't think they care. Besides, if you need the new GPU and CPU capabilities then you should go the PC route. You should be "pro" enough to not really care what OS you're using.

The purpose behind the fresh redesign was to make it more appealing to a larger audience. Apple makes more money when it's product appeals to a larger audiences. And this CAN has plenty of horsepower now and in the future for that larger audience.

PC makers are far from mass producing a worthy competitor which is the number one reason to change. Factor in FCPX's popularity and the growing number of multi HD camera households and they have an easy winner for the foreseeable future.
 

kingtj

macrumors 68030
Oct 23, 2003
2,509
648
Brunswick, MD
I'd basically agree with this ....

I will say, though... there are plenty of pro users out there who DO consider OS X a non-negotiable feature on their workstation. If it wasn't for that, Apple would have lost pretty much ALL of the pro market by delaying the new Mac Pro's release so long!

I can't really think of a point in time where it wasn't possible to purchase a Windows based machine with more raw power and expandability than whatever Apple had to sell? It's always been about more than just the raw stats though. You can have all the fast disk storage capacity, RAM and CPU speed in the world, but it doesn't do you any good if you find the OS running it all to be cumbersome or unreliable.

Regardless -- times are changing. The graphics design, video editing and content editing people where I work have all gone to portable computers and a LOT of cloud based services. We're still using 2012 Mac Pro towers as the FCP video editing workstations but they typically sit unused until a special need comes along. Nobody's lifted a finger to consider updating them to the new Mac Pro and I don't expect they will any time soon. (In general, you can do a LOT with a well configured retina 15" MBP, attaching it to external displays when it's on a desk in the office -- and the pros of the mobility/portability it enables outweigh having some faster render times.)


Just like the recent update to the rMBP was minimal. I suspect the same will be the case for the nMP, if any. It wouldn't make much sense to change anything now until after Christmas. And it sure wouldn't make sense to announce new future changes and kill the existing supplies on hand. I suspect this will be one of the hottest gifts for the season.

I wouldn't put much into the fact that some people think they need to update this year for fear of losing the "pro" market. I don't think they care. Besides, if you need the new GPU and CPU capabilities then you should go the PC route. You should be "pro" enough to not really care what OS you're using.

The purpose behind the fresh redesign was to make it more appealing to a larger audience. Apple makes more money when it's product appeals to a larger audiences. And this CAN has plenty of horsepower now and in the future for that larger audience.

PC makers are far from mass producing a worthy competitor which is the number one reason to change. Factor in FCPX's popularity and the growing number of multi HD camera households and they have an easy winner for the foreseeable future.
 

MacProCard

macrumors 6502
Jun 3, 2014
299
13
I will say, though... there are plenty of pro users out there who DO consider OS X a non-negotiable feature on their workstation.
Either you need it or you don't. Mindless threats like they better or they'll lose the pro market is childish imo.

It's always been about more than just the raw stats though. You can have all the fast disk storage capacity, RAM and CPU speed in the world, but it doesn't do you any good if you find the OS running it all to be cumbersome or unreliable.
It's always been about style and artistic expression for Apple. Made a market out of being different. And this CAN cashes in on it. Cumbersome OS!? Only to a certain extent. Nothing to keep a real user from getting their work done.


Regardless -- times are changing. The graphics design, video editing and content editing people where I work have all gone to portable computers and a LOT of cloud based services.
Cloud is dead unless they make some serious changes to security. The nMP is aimed at portability.
 

fuchsdh

macrumors 65816
Jun 19, 2014
1,326
654
I don't think Thunderbolt 3 is going to be coming very soon (at least not next-rev soon.) They still haven't proliferated TB2 through the rest of the Mac line, and one of the primarily appeals of Thunderbolt is its interconnectedness with DisplayPort—my understanding is that the next-gen Thunderbolt would require a different port which negates some of its advantages.

DDR4 seems like a given (although I shudder to think what the prices will be on aftermarket upgrades for a while), and I'm wondering if Apple can rejigger the PCI lanes to get another PCIe flash module on the second graphics card (which would be great to have a two-drive RAID internally.) We'll see.
 

dagamer34

macrumors 65816
May 1, 2007
1,359
101
Houston, TX
If you're going to wait, you need to know why you are waiting and for how long. Don't just wait for a 5% CPU bump, they are rarely worth it. Instead, things like USB 3.1, Thunderbolt 3, hardware HEVC decoding, and HDMI 2.0 are discrete features will always be useful 3-4 years after you buy your Mac Pro. But that stuff isn't coming for another 1-2 years.
 

thedommer

macrumors regular
Jan 13, 2008
178
4
I'm waiting to see what the second generation mac pro of this new design turns out to be. My main hope is that they will offer one with a single graphics card. I do very intensive music production and thats what I want it for. If for some reason it does not become an option I will go with whatever the highest end iMac at the time is.

I am using an early 2008 mac pro right now that is starting to suffer with newer software. I can still wait a bit longer.
 

sigmadog

macrumors 6502a
Feb 11, 2009
761
588
just west of Idaho
JYou should be "pro" enough to not really care what OS you're using.
Well, for those of us pros with a significant investment in software, the OS is still fairly important. Personally, the amount of software I would need to repurchase when switching to Windows would double the price of a new computer system, at least.

I am, for all intents and purposes, chained to the Apple OS. Not complaining. It's just the choice I made years ago, and it's been a mutually beneficial relationship.
 

fuchsdh

macrumors 65816
Jun 19, 2014
1,326
654
You should be "pro" enough to not really care what OS you're using.
To me the difference between Mac and PC is having a job I love and having a job I hate. The OS does make a difference, putting aside ecosystem costs of switching like eco says.
 

MacProCard

macrumors 6502
Jun 3, 2014
299
13
Well, for those of us pros with a significant investment in software, the OS is still fairly important. Personally, the amount of software I would need to repurchase when switching to Windows would double the price of a new computer system, at least.

I am, for all intents and purposes, chained to the Apple OS. Not complaining. It's just the choice I made years ago, and it's been a mutually beneficial relationship.
I feel for you. Software can be a risky business. Can't count how many times I've seen companies/departments choose the wrong one.

Sounds like you're running some expensive software.

----------

To me the difference between Mac and PC is having a job I love and having a job I hate. The OS does make a difference, putting aside ecosystem costs of switching like eco says.
That kind of sensitivity doesn't sound healthy. Most of one's work is usually in applications rather than OS. Unless that is, you find connecting to the internet and creating folder structures to be so overwhelming. :D
 

ixxx69

macrumors 65816
Jul 31, 2009
1,119
635
United States
You should be "pro" enough to not really care what OS you're using.
Either you need it or you don't. Mindless threats like they better or they'll lose the pro market is childish imo.
I feel for you. Software can be a risky business. Can't count how many times I've seen companies/departments choose the wrong one.
That kind of sensitivity doesn't sound healthy. Most of one's work is usually in applications rather than OS. Unless that is, you find connecting to the internet and creating folder structures to be so overwhelming. :D
I'm new around here, so I'm probably just misunderstanding something, but are you meaning to be rude, or are you just not aware of it?