Demoted from Mac Pro to iMac or Hackintosh :(

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by dimensional, Jul 29, 2010.

  1. dimensional macrumors member

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    Jul 28, 2009
    #1
    Anyone feel like they've been priced out of the Mac Pro? I priced out an iMac to the closest Mac Pro config I could find and it was about $3400.

    If an iMac with non-Xeons is this expensive, I have to believe that even a single processor westmere Mac Pro with a decent Ghz is going to break $4-5K. It's just hard to justify spending that much on a computer. I've bought three aluminum Mac Pros before and it was always mid-$3000s.

    Kind of depressing. My main issue with the iMac is the graphics card isn't upgradable and I worry about the I/O bandwidth on it (I'm not sure if that is a valid concern or not with the i7 860s -- is it?).

    So expensive. The cynical side of me thinks they're pricing it so high so that the market share goes down enough so that they can justify killing the product off. Pretty frustrating.

    I wish they'd take the iMac, stick it in a mid-size aluminum case, give it two card slots, and ditch the monitor. Yeah, I know this will never happen.

    I mean, I don't even know what I'm going to do with my existing 30" Cinema Display if I end up going iMac. Seems like such a waste.
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #2
    Quad core Mac Pro is 2499$ and six-core will likely be ~3500$. Then add ~200$ for 5870 upgrade and another hundred for more RAM. What is your usage anyway? Do you need that much speed? Who not to use your older Mac Pros?
     
  3. dimensional thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 28, 2009
    #3
    I really want a 32nm westmere, I hate that there is no price break on the almost-two-year-old 45nm Nehelams. So that basically means one six-core westmere which is outrageously expensive (I think it's like $1400 from newegg for just the processor from Intel, that's $1400 before the Apple tax).

    I also want a 256GB SSD for the OS. I've read so much positive news about how having your OS and your apps on an SSD makes such a big difference. It just seems malevolent to spend $4000+ on a computer these days that doesn't have an SSD. Apple's 256GB SSD on the iMac is a $750 add on. Between the SSD and the single Westmere Xeon and a decent amount of RAM (probably 9GB for i7 900s, maybe 12GB if it isn't too expensive), and the upgrade to the 5870 I'm certain I'll be clearing $5K.

    The aluminum powermacs I bought were the 2004 G5 Alum, the 2006 one (that's the one I use), and a 2007? which I bought for a coworker and which I do not own. So the most recent one I have is the 2006. It's been four years since I upgraded and I have the money to upgrade. The 2006 bogs down on a lot of development stuff.

    My usage is mostly development and lots of analysis so it's pretty I/O and CPU-intensive. I also do casual gaming but I like visual eye-candy so even though I'm casual I like good visuals.
     
  4. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    Mar 17, 2005
    Location:
    London, UK
    #4
    The target market of the Mac Pro's not the same now as it was for the '06-'08 Mac Pros. Back then it was the prosumer machine of choice but now Apple believes the top end iMac fits that purpose instead. For those that already have a nice screen and want a bit more upgradability in the future, a hackintosh does seem the only route and it's getting easier and easier to do.
     
  5. hugodrax macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 15, 2007
    #5
    The Mac Pro is a work computer, it is not a consumer desktop.

    No one who needs a proper workstation will bitch about a 4K computer when the software costs are x10 times more etc..

    80% of the people on this forum probably should not even be looking at Mac Pro workstations to begin with.

    Those who do, The Mac Pro pays for itself the first few days it gets put to use.
     
  6. snouter macrumors 6502a

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    May 26, 2009
    #6
    The iMac is just not an option.

    Can't replace the hard drives and are stuck with the screen. Can't add USB 3 or eSata cards.

    I thought this post summed it up very well.

    http://www.marco.org/868606627

    I also run a $1250 home built i7 920 with 12Gb of ram, and have been VERY pleased with it.

    All Apple would have to do is base their SP machines on non-Xeon parts and use 6 ram slots and price it at $1999 and they'd have a SMASH hit on their hands.
     
  7. dimensional thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 28, 2009
    #7
    Yeah, they should be looking at hackintosh. It's the only really viable solution since the iMac is shackled to a medicore graphics card.

    Wish I knew why Apple hated the power-user desktop crowd so much.
     
  8. snouter macrumors 6502a

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    May 26, 2009
    #8
    True and true.

    Basically, the Mac Pro is for agencies or people who do mid to high-end paying work, and even then, I bet there is a lot of agitation to start considering Windows machines since in some situations they can be as much as 50% cheaper.

    My main software of choice is Cinema 4d and Adobe Production Premium CS5. Both of which run perfectly fine on Windows.
     
  9. dimensional thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 28, 2009
    #9
    Do you run OS X on it? Do you have a list of the parts you used? Or do you know of "cookbook" of sorts that contain a list of parts that work well together and are known to work with OS X? I'm new to the hackintosh scene but not new to building my own PCs.

    Yep.

    Another thing they could do would be to make a small external aluminum box that has two expansion slots in it that can connect to an iMac or ideally a MacBook Pro.
     
  10. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    #10
    Have a look over at InsanelyMac. There are loads of guides for pre-tested hardware. I think the gigabyte boards are the best bet. Mine took a bit longer to do since I went for a less common mATX ASUS board since I wanted to build my Hackintosh into my old Mac Pro's case. It took a while to set up but it was completely worth it. I've now got an i7 running at 4GHz, 12GB of RAM, 8TB over 5 standard drives, a 256GB SSD boot drive and a 5970 graphics card. It does the job! :D
     
  11. Mackilroy macrumors 68040

    Mackilroy

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    Jun 29, 2006
    #11
    Go here or here. Lots of good information about building hackintoshes at those two sites.
     
  12. snouter macrumors 6502a

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    May 26, 2009
    #12
    Apple believes that the desktop is dead.

    They have pushed sales to laptops. Until VERY recently, the iMac was mostly made of laptop parts, only differing in the use of video cards and 3.5" hard drives. The i5 and i7 iMacs are the first ones to at least give users the more powerful desktop CPU.

    The market for the Mac pro, as has been stated, is for agencies and people doing well paid work.

    Apple is also betting the farm on the mobile device future and therefore resources have been shifted to iPhone, iPad and iOS.

    They were in no rush to upgrade the Mac Pro, because the market it caters to does not care about the processor that just came out last week. They care about machines that do billable hours.
     
  13. Icaras macrumors 603

    Icaras

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    Mar 18, 2008
    Location:
    California, United States
    #13
    Yup, I wanted the Westmere Mac Pro as well and the 27" LED display to go with it, but it will be priced at around 5K, like you mentioned. Although I was planning on it, I am most definitely pushed out of the Mac Pro range with these prices. Like a lot of people on these forums have already suggested, Apple is out to get the super high end professional with this Mac line.

    I've stopped arguing with myself and just ordered my i7 iMac and I know I'll be happy with it. I keep spouting this in other threads, but the real deal breaker for me was the SSD+HDD combo. It's a perfect basic setup for the working prosumer or high paying consumer who wants a fast boot drive and extra mechanical drive for storage of media and work files. I think the non upgradeable GPU is a definite downside, but thank god Macs have high resell values anyway. I just plan on selling the machine in 3-5 years time for a new one anyway.

    As for your 30" ACD, why not just make it a double display for your iMac? :)
     
  14. hugodrax macrumors 6502a

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    Jul 15, 2007
    #14
    Adobe can run on a regular 500 dollar desktop fine.

    Anyhow I am not sure if an equivalent dual physical CPU dell workstation is going to be 50% cheaper.


    The cost of a desktop is trivial in the scope of things, 4-5 grand for a desktop is nothing really. And downgrading to windows and using a cheap chopchop box is a false economy.

    I cannot risk all the BS involved with windows, the Sapping of I/O performance because of AV having to intercede every request,etc.. Potential crashes, fingerpointing between vendors etc..

    Now what I do on my mac is Derivatives/equity trading and I run some complex workloads on it as well. I run several apps on this thing that is getting realtime market feeds (CBOE/etc..)

    Time is money.

    I still have my old Sun Ultra2 creator, that thing cost 25 Grand back when I got it. We are getting so much bang for the buck today it is not even funny.
     
  15. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #15
    Mac Pro was never a prosumer machine. PowerMacs were prosumer machines.
     
  16. DaveP macrumors 6502

    DaveP

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    Mar 18, 2005
    #16
    Sadly true. And iMacs originally started as an "I want to just to do basic computing" type machines before slowly evolving to target a higher level market. Unfortunately, the limitations of the iMac form factor is very annoying to a lot of prosumers.

    I wonder what sort of analysis was done in making this shift or if it was just a Steve Jobs gut feeling decision.
     
  17. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    Boston
    #17
    So true. If they thought otherwise, they'd be dedicating more time, energy and resources to providing a richer set of solutions.

    I agree with the other sentiments however in that Mac Pro is really geared towards the professional who needs a full blown workstation. The iMacs are plenty powerful to handle the prosumer and high end consumer needs.
     
  18. hbryan macrumors newbie

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    Mar 5, 2009
    #18
    Well, the price isn't stopping me, it is slowing down my purchasing cycle. I am one of those "high end" consumers.

    I haven't updated since I got my 1st MacPro (1,1), because the software I use hasn't caught up to the hardware (yet). I do expect it to catch up in the next 12 - 18 months, so I will be upgrading.

    My next MacPro will have to go for at least 5 years (if not longer).
     
  19. Spanky Deluxe macrumors 601

    Spanky Deluxe

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    Location:
    London, UK
    #19
    The 2006 and 2008 Mac Pros were prosumer machines as well as workstations - they were competitively priced with the PC competition. '09 onwards, $1000 more than the competition across the board and prosumers were priced out.
     
  20. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    #20
    Build yourself a hackintosh around the GA-P55A-UD4P mobo. It's about the easiest thing to do, according to the tonymacx86 forums. It'll take i3, i5 or i7 LGA1156 cpus, do hyperthreading, 16 GB RAM and all that. Plus, your video card options are far greater with a hackintosh than with any Mac.
     
  21. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #21
    Xeon is not prosumer. Xeon is professional, like Opteron.

    Phenom is prosumer.

    Core is more consumer that Athlon. Some people could argue that Athlon is cheap prosumer.
     
  22. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #22
    The iMacs may be powerful, but they can't satisfy the prosumer needs, which are not limited to power.
     
  23. DaveP macrumors 6502

    DaveP

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    Mar 18, 2005
    #23
    Exactly. Such as, if you are working with HD video or similarly sized files the multiple external hard drives get really annoying. The CPU specs are plenty fast (particularly the i7s) for most prosumers.
     
  24. dimensional thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 28, 2009
    #24
    I picked up a 2006 Intel Mac Pro for mid-$3000, it was mostly maxed out except for RAM. For me, mid-$3000 is kind of the upper limit. So I'd say that the 2006 Intel Mac Pro was "prosumer".
     
  25. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

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    #25
    Fixed it for you. Many prosumers, can and do find the iMac satisfactory. Sure there are some that it will not but that's just the nature of the beast.
     

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