Buying a new Mac Pro-undecided

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Caveneau, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. Caveneau, Apr 21, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012

    Caveneau macrumors newbie

    Apr 21, 2012
    Hello, I just joined Macrumors after years of benefitting from it.

    Here's my situation.

    I own 2 macs,
    My 1st mac is a Power Mac G4, Power PC, Dual 1 Ghz, ‘Quicksilver’.
    I bought it in 2001, it’s noisy as hell from day 1, but it’s a tank and still running strong with no major problems. Incredible.

    My 2nd mac is a used Power Mac G5 Quad, PowerMac11,2, PowerPC G5.
    I bought it used in 2009 and it has performed fairly well, but not as beautifully as my first one.

    I use applications like Photoshop, Final Cut Pro(older versions) and music software such as Reason 4.
    I have noticed a significant decline in performance of my G5 in the last 12 months.
    Internet speed has appeared to slow down using both Safari 4.0.2 and/or Firefox 3.5.5. The known issues with Flash plugins still crashes Safari on me at least once or twice daily, but I can live with that.
    Also with my G5, after it’s been on for several hours, it sometimes won’t turn off when I shut down and I quite often have to ‘force quit’ by holding the power button.

    I run OS 10.5.8 and will not upgrade any further beyond that because I believe it will cause problems with a lot of my software(being older versions and then having to download updates which in turn, may not run so well).
    I attribute most of these issues to ‘age’ and me being stubborn not wanting to constantly upgrade my software.

    I don’t work in any particular industry that requires top-of-the-line hardware or software, but I enjoy having the power of the Mac Pro line.
    Anyway, here’s where I’m at. I’ve been really thinking about buying a new Mac but uncertain whether I should buy a top of the line iMac or the basic Mac Pro.

    I’ve been doing a lot of reading and my gut feeling is that I’d be happier with a Mac Pro since that’s what I’m used to.
    My Father and brother both have new iMacs. My father loves his iMac but he hardly tasks the processor because he just uses the internet and doesn’t run any major software, so any basic mac would suffice. However, my brother has the basic 27” iMac and he runs music software like Reason 5 and Logic(don’t know which version). He claims it has caused him lots of headaches like loud fan or HD noises, problems burning CDs, and system freezes. I take all of that with a big grain of salt because my brother complains about everything, but I have read that there have been some problems with brand new iMacs that others have bought.
    So, my biggest complaint about both of my macs has always been THE NOISE! They run like engines.
    Also, I’m aware that my 2 old macs are ‘PowerMacs’ and are pre-INTEL. I’ve heard that I should hold on to them and not get rid of them, which I wouldn’t do anyway.

    Based on what I’ve mentioned my personal uses are, does anyone think I would have any problems with just buying a basic Mac Pro Quad-Core for $2,599?
  2. Bear macrumors G3

    Jul 23, 2002
    Sol III - Terra
    One thing you need to do is look at what software you use and see how much it will cost you to upgrade to versions that are Intel (and Lion of course) compatible. Remember to check the free software for current versions as well.

    As for the iMac, I suspect one of the issues your brother has is not enough ram. The hard drive isn't loud, the fans do vary in sound. If you live close to your brother, go and listen and see what his complaints are in person.
  3. Jryll1 macrumors newbie

    Jul 28, 2011
    MacPro purchase

    I think I share your desire for a new Mac Pro, my concern lays in that Apple seems to have abandoned it. It's been 2 years since there was any type of refresh. I wish Apple would update it or kill it so I can move on. We may be in a 'Post' PC era but some of us still like driving trucks. Apple should keep up or get out of the truck market totally, so us truck drivers can find what we are looking for elsewhere.
  4. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    You should get a mac mini and flip all of your internet and low end activity to it. The older machines "stuck in time" should be blocked from the internet ( if there is some parental control feature on your home router then use it to block those machines from the Internet. )

    The huge problem you are going to create is the new software you need to avoid security issues is being muddled/handicapped by the software stuck in time. Pragmatically this is easier to do with two (or three) different machines. [ Technically you could possibly put the older stuff into a virtual machine but there are licensing and performance issues with that. ]

    As for the rest of the software stack. Again if going to be stuck in time then, a Mac Pro from the Leopard/Snow Leopard era may work better. A 2008 or 2009 Model are more oriented to being capped on 10.5 The 2008 will drop into vintage de-support in 2014; the 2009 in 2015. You have until around then to sort out your fixation on 10.5.

    Depends upon the RAM and storage provisioned.

    The iMac is a mismatch because you are pushing toward older hardware to go along with your older software. An older iMac that was compatible with 10.5 has more constraints than an older Mac Pro.
  5. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    No major vendor (Dell, Lenonvo, HP, etc.) has done a refresh either. This "2 years since ... hence abandonment" is FUD bring dribbled out.

    again with the misdirection. Intel is late. Everyone is impacted. What does this have to do with iOS or tablet devices?

    The only problem the Mac Pro may have is not that there are other vehicles than "trucks". It is in the number of trucks sold. The numbers of the others aren't material other than the Mac Pro has get on a similar growth path. The magnitudes don't have to be the same; nor are the primary issue.
  6. Jryll1 macrumors newbie

    Jul 28, 2011

    I beg to differ on no other vendors has updated either. The CPU's may be stalled due to Intel, but video cards, thunderbolt, USB3, have all moved forward and other vendors have updated their systems to reflect these changes. The Dell T7500 is as close to a MacPro as it gets and it has benefited from these advances. Apple is still selling a 2 year old video card? This lack of any sign of life is what has made me hold off on the purchase, I don't want to pay top dollar for a machine that may be dead. Please Apple prove me wrong, I have $3500 waiting to be given to you :)
  7. Bubba Satori Suspended

    Bubba Satori

    Feb 15, 2008
    Nice try with the spin and ironic accusation of misdirection.

    All the other PC vendors have inexpensive, screaming fast i7 towers that Apple won't let it's captive customers have
    with all the latest technologies that Apple won't let it's captive customers have and optioned anyway
    they want that Apple doesn't allow it's captive customers to do.

    Sorry, nobody is fooled about "Intel being late" and many have moved on.


    In a $2,500 computer with 3 GB of memory and a HD slower tham my 79 year old mother. :D
  8. linuxcooldude, Apr 21, 2012
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2012

    linuxcooldude macrumors 68020

    Mar 1, 2010
    Seems you trying to spin it yourself, trying to comparing a consumer PC to a workstation. i7's can't do Dual Processors, tit for tat.

    Mid priced PC towers are on the decline, mobile devices are increasing.
  9. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    Really? Dell seems to have forgotten to update their spec page:

    USB 2.0. No Thunderbolt. None of the standard high end workstation or server class Westmere boards had USB 3.0 . USB 3.0 has largely been targeted to consumer and tweaker motherboards.

    The T7500 only has USB 3.0 with an optional card

    " ... 2 - USB 3.0 ports (optional card) ... "

    There was no product update. There were configuration tweaks in the BTO system but there has been no substatantive update in the high end workstation/server board since Nehalem. Most vendors did the same thing Apple did and just tweak the firmware to support the Westmere upgrades, but roll out practically the exact same board.

    Spinning that was an Apple only thing is just FUD.

    Yeah because Apple has had bleeding edge video cards for the past 4-5 Mac Pro like product releases. This isn't "new" so it hardly be a sign of new "Post PC" neglect since it existed well inside the PC era.

    This is just silly. Apple generally doesn't rev the video (or other cards) after the release. Certainly not for the cards used in the standard configuration offerings. That's just how they roll. It isn't an indication of change of approach or availability.
  10. Jryll1 macrumors newbie

    Jul 28, 2011

    Hey Destruct,

    All I was saying is that Apple has given no signs of life to its Pro. Other vendors have at least tweaked their offerings.

    Yes Apple normally doesn't upgrade their video but they haven't even offered an upgrade card on their site, something they ave done before.

    And yes I did mis-speak the thunderbolt, I was just using its as an example of new Tech Apple could add even as a PCI-e card to add, but they haven't.
  11. crescentmoon52 macrumors newbie

    Jun 19, 2011
    You definitely need to get one soon... you can wait, of course, for the latest and greatest, if it ever comes out. I bought a new mac pro in Feb. and I am delighted with it.
    Remember that if Apple discontinues the mac pro, there will be a run on the remaining mac pros and the choices will be diminished...
  12. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    Frenetic updates in the Windows market is more indicative of undifferentiated offerings competing with each other for limited user attention much more so than some sort of deeper commitment to the core products.

    The Mac Pro is differentiated with Mac OS X. It is substantially different without having to appeal to the "Dell coupon of the month" , " foo-foo widget add-in card" , or "disco ball lighting on the case".

    Even if Apple added BTO options or addition items for sale in the store that wouldn't particularly indicate one way or the other whether there was a new Mac Pro coming. Breadth of BTO options is not what primarily drives Mac Product evaluations. Unis sales is a far more important factor.

    Those are typically 3rd party graphic cards. If there is some unfilled 10's of millions or 100's of millions dollar graphic card aftermarket how come 3rd parties haven't offered solutions in their own stores?

    The Mac Pro (MP) being 2-4% of the Mac market and the Mac market being 6-7% market if the number of Mac Pro card aftermarket is even 50% of the MP base that is a whole whopping 0.1% of the PC market at best. It is not particularly surprising the 3rd parties are not stumbling over themselves to fill the gap.

    The lack of cards doesn't say anything substantive about a new Mac Pro.

    Probably not. Unless Intel has radically changed its stance, if there is not a video signal on the PC motherboard, Thuderbolt is at odds with it. I've seen some new Ivy Bridge oriented boards pop up with "TB headers" on them next to a x4 PCI-e slot. Most likely that header is only really feeding the Display Port signal from the iGPU to the card hosting a TB controller. The slots x4 PCI-e is combined with the iGPU output to deliver a TB solution.

    That's not going to work on Xeon E5 or i7 39xx boards because there is no iGPU on the motherboard (or on Apple's CPU/RAM tray).

    Will some 3rd party come up with a kludge card that couples a x4 PCI-e card with a short display port cable to route the output from a standard graphics card's Display Port socket, so that can reroute to a TB port? Perhaps.
  13. Caveneau thread starter macrumors newbie

    Apr 21, 2012
    Buying a new Mac Pro - still undecided

    I think the Mac Pro will be around for a long time yet. Maybe Apple will just stream-line down to 2-3 models of Mac Pro.

    Good thing I back-up regularly.
    I'm think I'm just going to keep using my old macs and when they finally die, that's when I'll buy a new mac. And if they no longer sell Mac Pros by then, I guess I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.

    Considering my macs have been the most reliable computers I have ever used, I'm just going to run them into the ground.
    On my Power Mac G5 Quad, PowerMac11,2, I may attempt to install Reason 5 in the near future(Reason 6 would never run, plus states Intel only) but as I may have mentioned, I'm not planning on updating the OS any further than 10.5.8. My current OS is so outdated that I can't even send error reports to Apple anymore.

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