Approaching Crunch Time - HP Z420 Workstation Review

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by 24Frames, May 21, 2012.

  1. 24Frames macrumors regular

    Mar 23, 2012
    For those of us who almost no longer care anymore whether Apple release an updated Mac Pro or not and are seriously considering the alternatives:

    Performance is impressive, albeit at a very high price.
    I have to say that I hate the HP design, it looks cheap.
    On the other hand the new Dell cases look pretty good, not quite up to Apple's standards, but a big improvement on the old ones.

    It will be very interesting to see more details of Mountain Lion. If it doesn't look like it will deliver enough in terms of GPU support then switching to Dell will look the more attractive option irrespective of whether Apple announces a new Mac Pro or not.
  2. TacticalDesire macrumors 68020


    Mar 19, 2012
    I'm a huge fan of Dell's workstations. I highly recommend them.
  3. goMac macrumors 604

    Apr 15, 2004
    Which begs the question why one is posting here.

    (Sorry to be the kill joy.)

    Ah, so it's "I'm really watching the Mac but I'm going to be alarmist."

    Seriously, this is why I don't take this forum seriously.
  4. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    Dell's got the idea, man. Sideways rack-able and not looking like total ass as a workstation at desk. Good use of space. I need OS X more than Windows. OS is more important to me than the HW power differences between single tick/ tock cycles. But cool for workstation in need and no preferred OS.
  5. 24Frames thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 23, 2012
    Well I did say almost...

    But seriously it seems pretty sensible to look at all options given the cost of any decent workstation is considerable.

    GPU support on Mac is a real issue for 3D Graphics and VFX. At the moment none of the packages use OpenGL 3.2 on Mac, they are all stuck on OpenGL 2.1.

    According to the vendors, and these include Luxology, whose application modo is used for some of the performance tests that Apple quote in their marketing, the problem is that Apple have implemented it in such a way that they have to rewrite 10s of thousands of lines of code. There are some indications that their will be a new graphics architecture in Mountain Lion for OpenGL and OpenCl, but details are hard to come by and it isn't clear what this will mean in practice.

    So for me, and others, it is an issue.
  6. G51989 macrumors 68030


    Feb 25, 2012
    NYC NY/Pittsburgh PA
    I see this guys point, Apple refuses to help out their workstation customers, which makes sense. Apple cares about iOS and nothing else.

    So he's proving better alternatives to the overpriced and outdated Mac Pro. For Those Mac Pro Users who will need to go somewhere.
  7. rhapsodyosx macrumors newbie

    Aug 14, 2006
  8. 24Frames thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 23, 2012
    Well looking at Lenovo's website doesn't make me want to deal with them, likewise HP for that matter. They seem very focused on the corporate market.

    I want to be able to spec out a system online. Apple to their credit make that incredibly easy. Dell are pretty good. HP and Lenovo seem to be trying to make it as hard as possible. I really don't want to do this over the phone, it is too complicated, much easier to do online.

    There are also some great small vendors, such as Armari and Scan that are frequently reviewed in 3D World and 3D Artist and have a very good reputation.
  9. wallysb01 macrumors 65816

    Jun 30, 2011
    That review is a bit odd. I'm not really sure why they chose to compare it to what they did. Of course the E5-2687 is going to be faster than the 2667, or an E3 no matter who makes it. Then they even throw in an i5-2500. I guess I just don't really get the point in testing configurable computers against each other when of course they are configured differently.

    I'd be much more interested in the build quality and easy of swapping HDDs, RAM even CPUs in that case. Plus, I'd like to now what kind of temps and fan noise are seen and heard at specific work loads with the same configuration across the different vendors and designs. They give you these things in the review, but only sort of. Its not really an apples-to-apples comparison.
  10. Bubba Satori Suspended

    Bubba Satori

    Feb 15, 2008
    Check out BOXX, too.
  11. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    I don't think the logo is big enough. :rolleyes:
    Fugly Boxx.
    Dell is better design. But again, Windows. Whoopty doo.
  12. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    Keep in mind, if you're after a tool used to earn a living, it's existence is more important than anything (vaporware won't help you bring home the bacon). :eek: :p

    This isn't to say that a new MP won't show (I have expected one this time, as well as the next die shrink), but for those that need to plan their purchases, it may be time to consider alternatives due to the increasing development/release cycle for Xeons.
  13. 24Frames thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 23, 2012
    I have to say I am very impressed by the upcoming Dell Precision line.
    Unless Apple offer a Professional Graphics card, such as the NVidia Quadro 4000 as a BTO option I'm pretty likely to go for the a T5600 or T7600.
  14. pprior macrumors 65816

    Aug 1, 2007
    That dell 7600 actually looks pretty sweet and design interior looks nice and having -8- quick swap hard drives is AWESOME! I almost feel like I'm cheating on my spouse looking at dells, but as I've noted elsewhere since I've moved entirely to Adobe apps for both video and photo editing, I'm no longer wedded to Apple and they're not meeting my needs. I'm giving a month and then will seriously consider that dell.
  15. Bubba Satori, May 28, 2012
    Last edited: May 28, 2012

    Bubba Satori Suspended

    Bubba Satori

    Feb 15, 2008
    My workstaion is under a desk. I haven't looked at it in 20 years.
    It's what I do with my computer that's a better design, not the tool
    I use to create with. I don't have a single good looking tool in my garage, either. :cool:

    W7 works great, unlike Mountain Leopard or Snow Lion
    or whatever the latest silly named beta of iOSX is called.
    There's gotta be more folks clamoring to downgrade out of
    iLion than there were running away from Veesta back to XP. :p

    W7, it just works. And it killed the "I'm a Mac" ads, too. :)
  16. fox10078 macrumors 6502


    Nov 6, 2009
    First paragraph, completely logical.

    Then you had to go and make yourself look like an idiot with that second one.

  17. linuxcooldude macrumors 68020

    Mar 1, 2010
    I noticed that too.
  18. JoeG4 macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.
    Wow one of those dells has 4 3.5" bays and 4 2.5" bays.. got enough storage space? XD
  19. woody777 macrumors newbie

    May 25, 2012
    I have seen on YouTube that on their previouse workstation they could put a liquid cooling system if u want so, and the machine becomes a very very quit machine even at full performance. It make sense for people in music production industry or for anybody who wants just anjoy their computer at full performance with out the sound of a jet engine.

    That liquid cooling system looks interesting, do HP still have it any boy knows,I wish Apple would over that for a new Mac Pro,then I am sold:confused:
  20. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    W7 is very good.
    Snow Leopard was and still is good.
    Lion is meh maybe Mountain Lion will improve it.

    One thing I must say is I would prefer apple to allow the osx more then a year to mature. Lion was only last June or July. I would like 30 to 40 months. I would also pay real money for a disk to load and move around from computer to computer. How about a family pack for mountain lion 5 users 200 bucks on a software disk? BTW the HP looks pretty good.
  21. phpmaven macrumors 68040


    Jun 12, 2009
    San Clemente, CA USA
    HP might as well stand for Heaping Pile. Their computers are junk. I wouldn't touch one with a ten foot pole. Not that I have an opinion :D
  22. pprior macrumors 65816

    Aug 1, 2007
    Apple seems to be standing for


    so I'm not sure a heaping pile is much worse at this point, sadly.
  23. derbothaus macrumors 601


    Jul 17, 2010
    Isn't it the only thing we CAN compare as the parts are the parts and it runs Windows? That is pretty much anything and everything. I'll do it myself with a better case so why even post boutique manufacturers but to compare little insignificant things like it's looks. It is the only distinction that can be made.
  24. G51989 macrumors 68030


    Feb 25, 2012
    NYC NY/Pittsburgh PA
    What makes HP Workstations so bad? I've worked with them before. They don't look pretty, but they get the job done. My GAMEPC workstation sits behind my monitors, I almost forget what the front of it looks like.

    HP makes a good workstation.
  25. 24Frames thread starter macrumors regular

    Mar 23, 2012
    If you're in Design, Architecture, Graphics Design, or anything else where aesthetics matter then if you don't care what your workstation looks like maybe you should consider another line of business.

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