Do you have a nMP? Do you like it?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by scottrichardson, Jan 24, 2014.

  1. scottrichardson macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2007
    Ulladulla, NSW Australia
    Simple really. Are you one of the lucky few who have one of the new Mac Pros? Are you happy with your purchase? What do you like about it now that you have it?
  2. lemonade-maker macrumors 6502


    Jun 20, 2009
    I do. It is faster than my previous 2009 with 2x2.4 hex in everyday use. I have a hex 2013 D500. It's fast, quiet, drives 4 crossover 27q displays without weird and loud video card setup, and runs containers great. I use it for software dev and it's great for that.

    It cost the same as the 2009 that I purchased the day it came out. If I get 4 to 5 years out of this one, it'll be awesome.
  3. Sam2lucky13 macrumors 6502


    May 26, 2011
    I had an eight core on order and was able to find a stock six core right away. More than enough for me and very happy with the performance thus far.
  4. d-m-a-x macrumors 6502

    Aug 13, 2011
    Finding little bugs, and at the present moment 2 gpu's kind of go to waste. Overall i am happy
  5. WillyWoo macrumors newbie

    Jan 12, 2014
    Yes -happy

    A few issues with sleep. TB Pegasus r4 not mounted after sleep
    Usb keyboard looses key strokes when using Aplle ext cord. Replaced with powered usb 3 hub, working fine now

    Lightroom import was so fast I sat there waiting for it, didn't notice it finished so fast

  6. michaeljk, Jan 25, 2014
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2014

    michaeljk macrumors member

    Dec 14, 2013
    I had needed a new Mac for a year. I have a new Mac now (standard config six-core). It is much more quiet and unobtrusive than any Mac I've ever owned. It is so minimal in size, appearance and noise, I often forget its there. I have it hooked up to two Monitors (both at 2560x1440), an Audio/Midi Interface (Firewire 400 attached with Firewire 400 to 800 cable to a TB adapter), several external HDD drives (waiting to get external SSDs until they come down in price a bit for the larger sizes), several peripherals, and as a base for connecting all of my midi gear, speaker monitors and printers. Flawless so far. Not that I am pushing it in any way, other than the number of things I've got attached to it. I feel very relaxed knowing I've got more than enough Mac than I will need for the next several years. I will easily be able to augment the Mac with additional faster better external hardware as needed and as it becomes more feasible (4K Monitor, 1-3 TB SSDs, Thunderbolt Audio Interface, etc.

    Its a far better solution than the iMac I'd been considering. If I'd bought the iMac, I know I would have wished I'd purchased the Mac Pro. This also suits my office/studio setup for both photography and music. I have a system that can grow with me, rather than a system that I likely would be outgrowing within a year or two at the most (iMac). That's what happened with the last two iMac I've owned.

    So, I bought more Mac than I needed, and spent more than I wanted, but no regrets. I love how it really does work so well and looks so nice, and stays out of the way of what I am doing. I've even unpacked a bunch of old fun stuff for my music that had been in boxes for years, and have been having a blast getting it all connected again (had been waiting to do this until I upgraded my old iMac).

    Oh, and my stepson is thrilled to have a shiny new (2008) 24" iMac on his desk!
  7. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    Yes... Details here... :D
  8. Rock Hound macrumors member

    Dec 26, 2013
    Mine replaced a 2008 2.8Ghz Quad Mac Pro with a stock config 6-core nMP, so the boost has been more than welcome. My system is extremely stable.

    For basic productivity applications, don't expect any real performance increase relative to the current crop of i5 and i7 Macs. The real performance boost comes from applications that are multiprocessor aware, and particularly those that are hyperthreaded or use OpenCL. For most major tasks, such as video and audio processing, the performance is 5-6X faster than what I have been accustomed to.

    If you have an older Mac, I say go for it - you will be very happy. If you have a recent Mac Pro or don't really need multiprocessing and OpenCL, I'd say pass on this iteration or give the iMac a serious look.

    The toughest part of adapting to the nMP is deciding on mass storage (NAS or DAS) if you have a lot of data. I got the Caldigit T3 RAID and have been quite pleased.
  9. SeattleMoose macrumors 68000

    Jul 17, 2009
    Der Wald
    I have an 1G Apogee Duet audio interface which is FW400. You say you are now running FW400 to FW800 to TB (via cable/adapter). While recording how is the latency on Mics and guitars? Was wondering if the additional links in the audio input chain made latency noticeably worse?
  10. motegi macrumors regular

    May 14, 2009
    Upgrade to the new Duet mate. The sound difference is amazing!
  11. michaeljk macrumors member

    Dec 14, 2013
    I don't do live instrument recording. I have the Saffire Audio/Midi interface to connect my Mac to my Studio Monitors, and to connect my outboard Midi Gear's Audio outputs back to the Mac, so I can't really tell you anything about latency--there essentially isn't any. I can run Logic Pro with a buffer of 128 samples easily.
  12. firstofnine macrumors member

    Jan 22, 2014
    Same with me like Michaeljik: Probably a maxed out iMac would be more than enough for me but the price gap to the "beast" is not that big and I have so many different applications (photography, audio/midi, high end music, office, gaming, etc.) that the nMP which arrives hopefully tomorrow is great and sufficient for years.
    And it simply is "geil" as we say in Germany :D
  13. chfilm macrumors 68000


    Nov 15, 2012
    #13 :D
  14. richard371 macrumors 68020

    Feb 1, 2008
    2 weeks down and 4 to go before mine ships. I hope by then 10.9.2 is out and maybe some updated drivers etc. :)
  15. snouter macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2009
    I like it

    I picked up a base 6 core.

    I like it. I needed a Mac I could push harder than my MBP and could not bite on an iMac.

    My homebuilt overclocked 4930k Win8.1 beats it in most things for half the money, but, I like my Mac Pro. It's about what I thought it would be performance wise - an Ivy Bridge Xeon 3.5GHz that can't be overclocked. I didn't expect to alter the rotation of the earth with it.

    I think Adobe will get their apps (PP/AE) more optimized at some point. I'm not sure I have faith in Apple delivering really great drivers for the video cards though and I don't use the flagship FCP. I render Cinema 4d and it's just a 6 core Ivy Bridge, no surprises there.

    Like I said, I like it. It's a Mac I feel I can push hard. I love the look and the build quality is fantastic. It's quiet. Thermal core is a beautiful thing.

    I'd buy it again.
  16. GrayParrot macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2012
    nMP Cinema 4D and Adobe Video

    Snouter, I'm very curious to know more about your experience in C4D with the 6 core model you've described in your post. I use the same Adobe programs as well as Modo.

    I've seen the D500 Cinebench OpenGl scores, but I'm wondering about the stability of C4D on your new machine compared to your 4930k rig.

    Were you able to jump into current projects, normal scenes, without issue?

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
  17. sirio76 macrumors regular

    Mar 28, 2013
    The I7 4930k and the E5 1650V2 in the 6core nMP are basically the same processor and reach the same Cinebench15 score, the only(big) difference is that the 4930k can be easily overclocked to outperform the 6core nMP and match the performance of a new 8core(or even a 12core when pushed beyond 5ghz, with proper cooling..). That's why I choose the 4930 for my render nodes;)
    The Dxxx performance in C4D seems nice, in Maya the performance are good until you load your scene with more than 30million polygons, in Modo the performance are not good at all(as usual with AMD cards). In everyone of those application the Dxxx perform faster under Windows due to better drivers.
  18. GrayParrot macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2012
    Thanks sirio76. Really great to hear the Dxxx cards are working well in C4D.

    I'm aware of the performance of the 4930k; it was (or still might be) my upgrade to my current Windows box. Your render nodes sound like a really smart solution for 3D in general.

    I will probably have to run Modo in Windows anyway, because of all the issues it has with Mavericks. So odd that the nMP performs so terribly in OpenGL on a Foundry product considering the spectacle they put on at WWDC.
  19. brand macrumors 601


    Oct 3, 2006
    If they are basically the same and the only big difference is that the i7-4930K can be over clocked then you are saying that the i7-4930K supports ECC memory?
  20. QuickstartBridg macrumors member

    Jan 8, 2014
    Tucson, AZ
    Love it!

    Awesome upgrade from my 2002 Dell Dimension with XP. I had a cup of coffee waiting for it to boot to the desktop and another waiting for it to open Outlook and Firefox. It was serviceable but XP support is ending in April and I lusted after my wife's 2012 Mac Pro.

    Now I hardly get one swallow before I am ready to create on the nMP. CS6 flies compared to the Dell. I was able to transfer almost all my work data in various programs on the PC to the same or similar programs on the Mac (Microsoft Office, Filemaker [from Access], and CS6 Master Collection, etc.). Those that didn't translate to Mac are running on Windows 7 under Parallels (Notepad++, EasyMP Converter [for PowerPoint slides]) or Windows XP under Parallels (Visual Basic 6.0).

    Overall I am much more productive and have more fun doing it. Started flying with X-Plane 10 (relearning to fly sims after Microsoft Flight Simulator years ago).
  21. sirio76, Feb 2, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2014

    sirio76 macrumors regular

    Mar 28, 2013
    Absolutely not, but I was talking about 3D rendering where ECC ram doesn't make any difference. The two processor have 98% the same features/performance, even the same price. The thing is that all of the 6core in the I7 can be pushed easily and safely over 4ghz for long rendering sessions, so it can be significantly faster and can also use slightly cheaper non ECC memory.
  22. sirio76 macrumors regular

    Mar 28, 2013
    You can't beat the 4930k performance for that price;)
    I've assembled two nodes back in October( ) and I've just ordered the parts for two more nodes, the cost for that it's just a fraction of dual Xeons systems. IMO the lack of the second CPU in the nMP is really overrated for 3D rendering in most situations.
    Using distributed rendering in Vray, 3 nodes equipped with overclocked 4930K will outperform a pricey 24core(2x12 physical core) workstation and cost only 1/3 of the price or even less.
  23. snouter, Feb 2, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2014

    snouter macrumors 6502a

    May 26, 2009
    My 4930k has 32GB of ram, two 760GTX video cards and Samsung SSDs. I use one for the system and stuff, and shuttle projects on and off the other one. It runs AdobeCC and Cinema 4d very well and strong. I have mild C4d viewport wonkyness, where I grab the zoom viewport tool and it jumps to some weird infinity place and I have to scroll back in. Both otherwise, strong and stable. I'm not an edge overclocker, my Asus X79 deluxe has some automatic BIOS overclock setting and I just used one of those to get 4+GHz on all cores. Stable. Cool on air. Call me weird, I like Win 8.1 just fine, and of course, I can dump the two GTX760 video cards and pop something else in there easily if I need more from the video cards. I combine them in SLI to play Battlefield 4, Wargame Airland and iRacing. The RM850 PS is quiet and the Lian Li case fans only ramp up under load and are never really that loud, though louder than the nMP under load. Honestly, if bang for the buck is a primary concern - an Asus X79 Deluxe and a 4930k is tough to beat. It's a LOT cheaper and faster than the nMP 6c. When you are in AdobeCC or Cinema 4d, you don't really notice the OS all that much. I think the driver situation is better on Windows.

    I've only had the nMP for a couple of days and only used it for one project. In that time though, no issues noticed. Stable in the viewport. Model was not complex. The project moved over just fine. I've only been using MBP laptops for the last few years, so, this is my return to the MacPro. My last one was... gasp, a dual G5 2GHz. I animated my model on the Mac and sent it to Team Render in Cinema 4d. It took 38 machine hours to render with the 3770k, the 4930k and the nMP 6c all churning on it. GI and motion blur, lol. I may need to tweak those settings better.

    The nMP stayed very quiet. The fan never broke 800rpm. The CPU temps never broke 77C. The Thermal Core definitely works and you can leave this computer pegged overnight with no issues. However, it can't be overclocked, so each core is at a 500MHz+ disadvantage compared to my 4930k and that's just what it is. It looks like CPU upgrades will be possible with the nMP. Probably pricey and not sure how some of those will affect thermal characteristics if the swapped in CPU Turbos more aggressively.

    I think Windows has advantages in price and driver performance. The drivers will get more updates on Windows. You could build two 4930k machines (primary and render slave) for the price of one nMP 6c. But some people get irrationally strange about Windows 8.1. Some people think the iMac is faster or a better value than the nMP. For some workflows (2d design, 1080p video and light 3d), that is probably true. I don't think there is anyway to deny the thermal power of the nMP in comparison though. If you render overnight a lot, an iMac is not going to cut it and the 6 or 8 core nMP will provide more overall power.

    Where Apple really loses in comparison to a home builder is in CPU and RAM. Say the base 4c is $3000. You want a 6c. Apple charges you full retail ($500) to get the 6c. (I think the 6c Xeon is actually $583 full retail, Apple I'm sure gets a better deal) It's as if you NEVER paid for the 4c. It just vanishes in the price equation. Same with ram. I ordered 64GB of aftermarket ram, but the 16GB just vanishes in the price equation. The 4c is maybe $300 and the 16GB of ram is maybe $300 retail. All that goes in the trash can when you jump to more cores and more ram, which, most everyone does.

    I'm just giving my opinion and take on things. No holy war here, I'm ok with Windows, MacOS and Linux. Spreadsheet nonsense aside, I like my nMP. I'd buy it again. It's about what I thought it would be. It looks great. The build quality is first rate - the video card boards must be the thickest things I've ever seen in a computer. I wanted a Mac I could push and I have that.

    EDIT: I'm comparing my 4930k to the nMP 6c. If you need more than 6 cores, then you are in Xeon territory in Windows as well.
  24. echoout macrumors 6502a

    Aug 15, 2007
    Austin, Texas
    Holy CRAP that was rational! :eek:

    Refreshing, thanks.
  25. GrayParrot macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2012
    Truly Helpful Feedback

    Wow Snouter, as echoout just said, such a refreshing and rational post. Thanks to you too Sirio76.

    I love OSX, but I too use Windows 8 in a 3D workflow, which I hope someday will take place on the scale of Sirio76's render farm.

    Right now my plan is to use an i7 self-built workstation with dual 580s for Octane Render and Modo modeling, and the base 6 core nMP for everything else.

    Thanks again for the super clear explanations.

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