Mac Pro 2013 Expandability?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Erick89, Sep 21, 2013.

  1. Erick89 macrumors newbie


    Sep 21, 2013
    So the idea of expanding through thunderbolt is a great idea, but in reality is it worth it?

    There is already thunderbolt PCI expansion chassis around the web already but you can use the external thunderbolt chasis and buy a magma pci chasis for video cards. This will work as long as you're using supported cards but I'd only do this if you want nvidia pro cards and cuda or just down the line when the gpu needs an upgrade and so far this is the only way.
    This appears it will be able to fit the new firepro w9000 in a dual configuration but it may be a bit tight, I personally would go for the w7000 as that's all I really need or may just go with a single 780(confirmed working) for cuda cores.

    In the end I'd have to buy 3 of these for my setup simply because I need the pci-e slots, my setup would include (possibly) 2 w9000s or 3 w7000s, 3x 512gb pci-e flash, and the last chassis would include my avid cards.

    Not cheap at all... but this shows thunderbolt to be a great little I/O and in the future by thunderbolt 3 or later in the thunderbolt 2 lineup we'll see pci-e 3.0 chassis and 5 years 4.0.

    The mac pro is just as accessible but they seem to be going sadly for external expansion... Now I believe the dual cards in the new pro's are on 3.0 and hopefully dual 7000s or if cheap enough the 9000 option. Than basically I'd just use these for extra pci storage.
  2. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    It's not really clear whether you're pleased with the new Mac Pro or not, but I believe what you're saying is that your work requires at least 4 or 5 cards, of which two are high end FirePro cards. So, the new Mac Pro sounds ideal for you because it comes with up to two W9000 cards and PCIe SSD built in. All you need is something to accommodate your Avid cards and maybe those are or will be offered as TB peripherals (I don't follow them that closely).
  3. Macsonic macrumors 65816


    Sep 6, 2009
    From your post what I understand is if it's worth spending a certain amount of money for the new 2013 cylinder Mac Pro. Probably weigh in on a long term if your income you derived can give you a return of your investment for a certain time frame. May be hard to quantify if it's worth it as we don't know the pricing, how it performs, and the cost of external expansion until it is released. I think there was a thread on this a few months back.
  4. deconstruct60 macrumors 604

    Mar 10, 2009
    How is that going to work? That chasis has a 300W power cap. Even if weave in the 75W aux power.

    Nor is it particularly set up for double-wide cards.

    This also doesn't particularly make alot of sense. Aiming 3 PCI-e flash cards at a single TB controller probably is not going to be very effective. If it is capacity then can be done with fewer cards. If it is throughput then 3 external expansion slots in a single device is the wrong path.

    Questionable whether PCI-e 4.0 is mainstream in 4 years. Unless affordable fiber comes with TB v3 then, also don't see PCI-e v3. The precursor would be IOHub chipsets getting PCI-e v3 and there isn't much pressure for that just yet.

    Indeed. The above configuration is rather extremely strange since there are already dual GPU cards in the system... what sort of expansion is needed? Updates are debatable. But systems concurrently requiring 4-6 video cards, that isn't where Mac Pro is being aimed at. It can be done, but not a best fit.

    If the equivalent W7000 and W9000 cards are reasonably priced then more like folks would need W7000 level performance now and W9000 a little later will just buy the W9000 capability now and grow into it. No expansion chassis needed.

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