Lightpeak and Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by milbournosphere, Feb 23, 2011.

  1. milbournosphere macrumors 6502a

    milbournosphere

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2009
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #1
    Here's a question for you to ponder over morning coffee. If Lightpeak is introduced tomorrow when Apple refreshes their laptop line, what are the odds of a card being released for the Mac Pro that has Lightpeak ports on it? I wasn't around for the Firewire days, so I don't know how Apple handled the introduction of Firewire, the last big bus introduced by Apple. How did they handle the situation back then?
     
  2. eawmp1 macrumors 601

    eawmp1

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2008
    Location:
    FL
    #2
    You can be sure that with the next refresh of the MacPro, the new ports will be on it. As for as existing machines, you'll have to have a third party come to the rescue, Apple will not likely provide a card.
     
  3. Chillviper macrumors member

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    Aug 12, 2010
    #3
    Current Mac Pro can't even handle SATA @ 6, how would it handle the 10 of Thunderbolt?
     
  4. chrismacguy macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #4
    I dont know about that - they have released cards with various connectors on for high-end machines in the past and still do - (Apple SCSI cards, Apple Fibre Channel cards (still avaliable as an after market upgrade to your Pro) and Apple Graphics-Card upgrades to name a few)
     
  5. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #5
    The PCI Express bus? Same way it handles high bandwidth GPUs.

    Firewire 400 came to the Power Macs first. However, Firewire 800 came to the Powerbooks first. Apple did not provide a FW 800 card for existing Power Macs (although third parties stepped in), and there was a slight delay until Power Macs got Firewire 800.
     
  6. dyn macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2009
    Location:
    .nl
    #6
    With the 10 from TB it can handly the sata-6, usb, firewire and displayport connection at the same time. It's in the last 4 words: "at the same time" aka simultaneously. It's not about just 1 port at a time. It's a universal protocol so you only need 1 chip in the future. That saves a lot of space since the only extra thing Apple needs to add is a connector.
     
  7. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
    #7
    I am thinking the iMac and MacMini could benefit the most from lightpeak. right now macbook pro has an expresscard slot that allows booting at about 120MB/s (at least the 17 inch model does)


    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/EXP34SATA2F1/


    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...re=western_digital_3tb-_-22-136-764-_-Product

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produ...112&cm_re=sans_digital-_-16-111-112-_-Product


    you can have the above attachments at home and at work. carry the macbook pro back and forth and plug into the above. so you really don't need light peak for a 17 inch mBp. You can do the same with your mac pro. you only need 1 setup because you don't carry a macpro back and forth.

    right now mac mini and iMac only allow fw800 so if you hook the sans digital up you get 75MB/s

    If light peak allows booting with a 2 drive unit like the sans digital the mac mini will benefit a lot as would the iMac.
     
  8. VirtualRain macrumors 603

    VirtualRain

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    Aug 1, 2008
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    Vancouver, BC
  9. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #9
    Mmmmm not Displayport. As noted, Displayport is 17.2 Gb/s.
     
  10. dyn macrumors 68030

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    Aug 8, 2009
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    .nl
    #10
    That's a bit too easy. DisplayPort has several versions with only the current 1.2 version supporting up to 17.2Gbps. It seems thunderbolt is not using DP 1.2 but DP 1.1a: http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=1106091 Considering the fact it is limited at 10Gbps this doesn't really come as a surprise.
     
  11. Bucko macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2009
    #11
    I have a 2.4 Ghz, 8 core, 2010
    I bought an internal Seagate Barrucuda XT SATA 2 TB, 64MB cache, 6gb/s drive I called Apple and they said it would work but I go under the profiler and still says 3GB. So they lied to me? unless I am not seeing something?
     
  12. Cmd-the-World, Mar 3, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2011

    Cmd-the-World macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2010
    #12
    The Seagate drive would work at 3Gb/s as the Mac Pro's internal connectors supports only up to 3Gb/s. Apple did not lie if they said that the drive would work as Sata 6Gb/s is designed to be backward compatible AFAIK, but at the slower speed of 3Gb/s

    Hope this helps
     
  13. Bucko macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2009
    #13
    They said that 6 should work with new Mac Pros. Nothing about backwards compatible. I specifically asked if my MAC could handle 6gb and they said yes.
    So, if it doesn't, how can I make it? If there's a solution?
     
  14. DeeEss, Mar 3, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2011

    DeeEss macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2011
    #14
    AFAIK, Thunderbolt won't work on current and previous Mac Pro's. It's physically impossible with the current architecture and isn't going to magically happen. TB requires graphics processing too and it's not something you can do with PCIe.

    Having JUST bought one. I'm really pissed. Not only am I stuck with limited hardware but resale will be crippled because it isn't TB.

    Thanks for nothing Apple.
     
  15. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #15
    Possibly politically impossible? Yes. But not physically impossible. Whether or not graphics are required, this is a problem that can be dealt with. A PCIe card is perfectly capable of doing graphics processing. :)
     
  16. DeeEss macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2011
    #16
    Well I sure hope you're right :)

    From Grant @ OWC (he answers comments at the bottom of the page)
    http://blog.macsales.com/9038-new-macbook-pro-2011-model-unboxing-and-first-looks


    A"...Dong at CNet is a sharp guy….and he’s right….no way to add TB via PCIe to a MacPro as TB requires graphics processing too (that’s the one side of TB many overlooking….the display capability) and PCIe doesn’t interface with such. So, as good as we are with all sorts of firsts on the market, looks like currently we won’t be working on a Thunderbolt PCIe card anytime soon..."

    Q"...So I take it the ATI 5870′s that have two minidisplay port inputs and 1 dual link DVI input…..those Mini DP ports cannot act as a TB input?..."

    A"...unsure how we will ultimately address…but IMHO, likely wouldn’t be cost effective to retrofit existing enclosure than what it would cost you to buy new...."
     
  17. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #17
    No reason a card can't do both graphics and TB....

    The issue is using TB with an existing card. That's a problem if they demand TB have video.
     
  18. DeeEss macrumors 6502a

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    Jan 17, 2011
    #18
    Well fingers crossed. I really hope so. It's an odd thing for a company like OWC to say though DYT?
     
  19. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #19
    Not really. OWC doesn't make video cards, so making PCI-E cards for TB is not an option for them regardless.
     
  20. ActionableMango macrumors 604

    ActionableMango

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    Sep 21, 2010
    #20
    I still don't understand why you can't have a non-video Thunderbolt PCIe card, or why you can't just throw an el-cheapo video chip on the same PCIe card.
     
  21. goMac macrumors 603

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    Apr 15, 2004
    #21
    There is no technical reason why you couldn't do either. It's all political.
     
  22. seek3r macrumors 6502

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    Aug 16, 2010
    #22
    I'd be willing to bet that the next graphics cards on the next model Mac Pro have thunderbolt (like apple cards used to have ADC) and won't be supported on older MPs, but will work fine (just like the 5770 and the 5870)
     
  23. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #23
    ADC is actually pretty simple to add, just requires adding a power line.... Thunderbolt is a little more intensive. You actually have to bridge PCI lanes onto the an added chip, and honestly, cards like the 5870 may not even have the PCI lanes to spare. Especially for three ports.

    This isn't to say it's impossible to add, but it would require much much great co-ordination with companies like AMD, and so far AMD has been pretty anti TB.

    Adding Thunderbolt to the Mac Pro GPUs also means no more MDP 1.2, which means no more high res displays. This is likely unacceptable for some pros.

    So really, no one knows what the hell will happen. :)
     
  24. seek3r macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2010
    #24
    ADC also passed USB

    It's likely the next MP will have PCI-e 3.0, which should give it the bandwidth needed

    I agree there, though with the way Apple see-saws it wouldnt surprise me to see an all-nvidia lineup next time around.

    Unless it implements TB2 (or whatever they call it) that will include optical, and probably newer displayport version.

    True dat, but we *are* on a rumors forum after all :p
     
  25. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #25
    Yeah, I realized that... Did they add a USB controller to the card?

    Hopefully, although if you are trying to drive 3 ports that's a lot of bandwidth...

    Yeah, kind of curious to see what NVidia says.

    According to Intel the copper connectors aren't going to change, it'll just convert to optical after it enters the cable.

    Macrumors: We're pretty much making it up. :p
     

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