A Few links for those who don't understand why the Mac Pro is still needed for Music

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by dented42ford, Jun 11, 2012.

  1. dented42ford macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010




    All PCIe. Most released within the last 12-18 months. NEW TECH. All using PCIe. Some Mac-ONLY.

    Sure, you could use a TB expansion chassis for many of them, but that is far from ideal. Processing power DOES matter if you, like me, use tons of complicated plugins such as synths, reverbs, and distortions/amp sims, many of which are massive resource hogs (anyone who's used FXpansion's Tremor or Guitar Rig 5 knows what I'm talking about). 16gb of ram - the "technical" max on any non-MP mac right now - is a joke when it comes to dealing with large sample libraries (East-West/QL, VSL, Cinesamples, LASS, Trillian/Omnisphere, etc.), never mind the 64-bit-ability.

    I need a new Mac. Desktop. With 64-ish-gb of RAM.

    I've been working on a hodgepodge MBP+chasis rig for a year now waiting for new MP's - and it does work, and yes I'm a stubborn silly bastard, but I wasn't dropping coin on a new tower until the tech was up to scratch. Could I have? Yes, but I wouldn't be able to do it again for quite a while (4-5years, probably).

    But now, due to the obvious we're-working-on-it (I don't think they are elo-ing the MP, but instead have technical issues preventing an update, whether that be volume concerns from Intel or TB-compatability issues I don't care) so-called-"update" to the line - which I'm somewhat facetiously hoping someone sues them over for false advertising (how is 2 years old "new" in tech, ever?) - I'm stuck looking at other options. Moving away from OSX is NOT an option for me, for various reasons.

    What Apple has done has made me look into ripping them out of money that I'd be glad to give them, either by going with a 2010 MP and a PC with Vienna Ensemble Pro to host my sample libraries, or by going Hackintosh. That is just silly of them, and has made me - a long time apple fanboy and fanatic - feel downright betrayed.

    What Apple really needs to do is split off the PRO segment of their product line - Mac Pro, Logic, FCP, Aperture, 17" MBP, Server - into a separate "daughter" company that isn't as constrained by the secrecy that serves the strictly-consumer iOS, iMac, and MacBook market so well. I actually LIKE their secrecy policy, when it comes to consumer devices - it is a brilliant, and obviously successful, marketing ploy that will continue to serve them well. But, when it comes to content creators and other PROS who depend on products that they've been supporting for a long time, we NEED MORE INFO. Like now, while I contemplate my options for a new rig, I still am left wondering if there will be a new MP in, say, Q4 - in which case I'll keep making do with what I have. Since they are giving me nothing, I really want to move ahead anyway, so they are losing out on my money - and I'm quite sure that there are some big production houses (TV, mostly) that were waiting to upgrade their whole systems ($100k+ minimum investment, usually over $1m) who are now in the same predicament...

    Ok, so this turned into a rant. See the links above if you want to know why a pro music guy would still want PCIe, and look up KONA and Red and Avid Nitris if you want to know about video. The MP is not just about specs, it is about expandability - and TB is just not cutting it yet.
  2. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    I guess you missed...


    Basically a symphony64 card wrapped in an external box with a Thunderbolt instead of a PCI-e socket connector. The break out connections are the same.

    Likewise missed.


    Most of those vendors have PCI-e solutions too.

    Won't need the chassis as several ( most probably over time) wrap the essentials of the PCI-e cards into a box with a TB connector on it and sell it for about the same or higher price.

    That avoids the whole "drama" of having to certify the chassis vendors since the audio folks are themselves a custom chassis vendor. As the reference designs for wrapping PCI-e cards into external TB boxes matures this will be cheaper and easier to do for more vendors looking to get additional return on investment on the work they have already put into their cards.

    I don't think the cards are going to dissappear any time soon., but more vendors are going to package the core work twice ( as PCI-e card and TB box) to get a larger ROI on the technology.

    Well one of these speed bumped Mac Pro will fit the bill.

    Nope. That won't return them a higher ROI.
  3. aliensporebomb macrumors 68000


    Jun 19, 2005
    Minneapolis, MN, USA, Urth

    So what are you guys all doing?

    I know my biggest problem is the 119 layer wedding cake music I'm working on. I kind of feel like it's back in 2004 again when I was pushing my old G4/400 well beyond its design spec.
  4. ogs macrumors member

    Jan 26, 2012
    Well uad Apollo has thunderbolt out and it would handle the processing not the computer. The symphony I/o also has thunderbolt out, but the computer would handle it. Regardless, I still need a Mac pro.. I just don't want to regret buying one now when next years model comes out....

    It's hard to justify spending thousands on old technology, no sata 3, no thunderbolt, no usb3..

    At this point other than storage (and apple clearly wants us to be using thunderbolt externals) and CPU power, the Mac pro is not worth the money.
  5. Jst0rm macrumors regular

    Feb 25, 2012
    the flux ircam tools are killing my current rig. Im in between projects right now and its a perfect time to upgrade. i will probably buy something used and wait it out.
  6. dented42ford thread starter macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2010
    Nope, I didn't miss any of those. BTW, the Apollo isn't that great - Cirrus Logic converters in a $2.5k box? No thanks. There was already the FW800 version, anyway - but, hey, look, FW is gone from the MBP!

    "Use this lovely dongle for your dongle, dingleberry..." (from Apple to a user)

    It isn't a matter of whether the tech can exist, it is a matter of existing RIGHT NOW. Expandability is important, as is a certain degree of Legacy support for PRO users.

    So, I have this $1k card, and now I have to spend another $1k on a box that has what I already have in it? Wonderful! It isn't really the money, but the principle of the thing.

    Oh, and did you notice that the "new Mac Pro" DOESN'T HAVE THUNDERBOLT? Not to state the glaringly obvious or anything, but that seems to be the theme here.

    As to the "speed-bumped Mac Pro", well, it WOULD fit the bill - I said as much in my original post - but it is still an overpriced, outdated machine. I'd much rather pick up a used 2010 and upgrade it - robbing Apple of their sale - as it is about 100% more cost-effective. That was kinda my point, in the first place!

    I do believe that Thunderbolt is likely to be the future - it is a technology long in the coming, and a brilliant idea, finally realizing the dream of external devices with the speed of internal ones - but as it stands, the solutions are much less cost-effective than they should be for a tech that is almost two years old now (Dev time).

    That doesn't change the fact that my industry is still using a great number of PCIe devices, and that Apple has not given us a future-ready replacement for the equipment we need to use them. Nor does it change the fact that I can make NO INFORMED DECISIONS about the future of my business, due to the fact that I'm locked into their platform for the time being - though, after I wrote my original post, I did a bit of inventory and realized that the only thing REALLY tying me to Mac is the Apogee hardware and Logic/DP, so it would be feasible, albeit expensive, to move to that other platform...
  7. Wild-Bill macrumors 68030


    Jan 10, 2007
    Well, I for one have a new UA Apollo on the way (upgrading from a MOTU Ultralite (ver 1), and to ensure there are no hiccups, I am purchasing a PCIe FW 800 card. Some people on UAD forums have stated that the onboard FW800 can be finicky, and will not work properly on the Mac Pro 1,1.

    I've got a 3,1 so it's not an issue, but for $28.00 I couldn't see a reason not to buy the card. See that, Apple? I am making use of a PCIe card.

    Anyway, depending on whether or not Apple decides to axe the MP line I can take that same PCIe card and install it in a new Hackint0sh build. :D
  8. TableSyrup macrumors 6502

    May 29, 2012
    I don't see any rush to run out and grab a TB setup, when a PCIe machine can grab you insane amounts of I/O - with an expansion chassis, or even within the box

    What about us guys with needs of 64 I/O or more???

    For me, 64 is fine, and Native is fine, being a MP and HD|Native can handle it without issues..... so why spend more money to just throw the card in an external box?

    And for those in need of more cards than can fit in the MP, a Magma PCIe to PCIe chassis is a very cost effective solution to run those Accel or HDX Cards

    Shooooot..... I finally got rid of my Mix system early this year - G4 MDD, Magma, 7 Cards, 8x 888's
    Used that joker for the mobile recording work, then threw it on the studio G5 setup for Mix/Master

    Now, with the MP and a HDN, I can run out with a single rack - MP, 4x192's or HD I/O's and accomplish the same thing, with more balls

    So yeah, I'm happy to have a MP with PCIe and a single card capable of my needs

    You ever try to record 64 Channels of Audio on a Laptop for at least 4 hours????? Or hours on end, multiple times in one day? Especially when you're getting up beyond 44.1/16 .... ??

    Good Luck !

    Major labels get Pi$$ed if you tell em, hey, sorry, my computer quit running mid-set on the main stage. My bad. Here's your money back.

    You'll never work for them again

    Attached Files:

  9. DPUser macrumors 6502a

    Jan 17, 2012
    Like the OP, I would have bought a new Mac Pro in June had Apple delivered with a Sandy Bridge version. I really don't care about Thunderbolt. So I just ordered a 3.33 6 core CPU to put in the used 2009 MP I bought and flashed to2010. I am hoping for 5 years or more from this machine; based on my current usage and absent catastrophic failure, things are looking pretty good.
  10. spoonie1972 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 17, 2012
    same boat, different water. 2008 mac pro with 20 gigs, was going to purchase a new machine, expecting a 2012 updated mac pro.

    no way, no how, am i spending that much cash on 2010 tech when 'the next big jump' is coming out next year.

    i'll just have to simplify my trackcounts and sample libraries for the time being.

    pretty frustrating.

Share This Page