Mac Pro buy now or wait?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Kravik, Oct 4, 2009.

  1. Kravik macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2009
    I'm looking to buy an 8 core Mac Pro as soon a possible. I need it for 3D rendering work, so I need as much power as I can afford to buy. But, don't want to buy one if they're going to bring a new one out the week after (done that before).

    I was hoping the new iMac that is due to be released, would have a Quad Core processor, forcing Apple to up the spec on the Quad and 8 core Mac Pro (increases in processor speed or perhaps 6 and 12 Cores). But from what I've been reading the new iMac will unbelievably still have a Dual Core processor (same as their notebooks, eh?)

    I know no one knows for sure, but what advice could you give me, buy now? wait a week? wait a month? (can't wait till next year) I've seen on the buyers guide that its approaching the end of cycle but that could still mean a few months. For sure I'll wait till the new iMac comes out as there maybe updates to the keyboard and mouse.

    Why is the Mac Pro so overlooked? There's no news about it anywhere. The last update to the Mac Pro was released at the same time as the last iMac, so surely there should be something new soon? Or am I going to be drip fed?

    Any advice appreciated?

  2. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    The Mac Pro uses workstation hardware, which is based on server hardware which usually sees an revision every 12-15 months. This means the no new Mac Pro for 6-9 months.
  3. iPhone 62S macrumors 6502a

    iPhone 62S

    Aug 18, 2009
    New iMacs, Mac Minis and MacBooks are coming out, but no Mac Pros in the near future.
  4. ThE.MeSsEnGeR macrumors 6502a


    Jan 26, 2009
    Caracas, Venezuela
    and I'll tell you, if they update the mac pros after u buy one... how much will they upgrade? :rolleyes:

    go enjoy an early christmas and buy yourself a powerhorse Mac Pro..! :D

    Enjoy IT!!
  5. zedsdead macrumors 68040

    Jun 20, 2007
    From what I have heard, the next Xeon's will be "Sandy Bridge" which won't be ready until mid next year.
  6. skye12 macrumors 65816


    Nov 11, 2006
    Austin, Tx
    At this point, I think you just have to wait for the upgrade.
  7. Kravik thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2009
    Thanks for all your responses.

    It's given me some peace of mind, especially the one about an early Christmas.

    Also, i've just read that the successor to the Nehalem, the Westmere (6 and 12 Cores) won't be ready till Q1 2010. So no major updates till then. Hopefully!

    Sandy Bridge release 2011.
  8. gugucom macrumors 68020


    May 21, 2009
    Munich, Germany
    This kind of thread is opened every three or four days. There is no novelty in the answers obviously.

    The only thing to add would be the observation that full desktop is rapidly becoming a niche product for Apple. So don't expect them to be actively developing it like the mobile products.

    It is a cash out product that is marketed at high price level and market share is obviously no great concern in a shrinking segment.

    The last update with Nehalem was pretty substantial (new 1366 socket and logic board) and I don't expect anything similar the next time. Probably they will just offer new CPUs and adjust the firmware.
  9. AZREOSpecialist macrumors 68020


    Mar 15, 2009
    The Mac Pros currently top out at 2.93 GHz. Since the latest generation of Mac Pros were introduced, Intel has brought three additional Nehalem Xeons to market:

    • W3550 @ 3.06 GHz on August 9, 2009
    • W3570 @ 3.2 GHz on March 29, 2009
    • W3580 @ 3.3 GHz on August 9, 2009
    The 3.06 GHz part is available to Apple for the same price as the 2.93 GHz part, so if nothing else Apple could have kept the top end Mac Pro price point the same while moving to a faster part. That has not happened. Neither has Apple made the other faster Nehalems available as BTO options. It's pretty clear Apple has no interest in updating the Mac Pro before the next architecture change due next year, which is a shame. The move to Intel was supposed to give Apple the freedom to update their computers more frequently than in the PowerPC days, but Apple clearly has no interest in this.
  10. macrumors 6502

    Jan 10, 2008
    The Netherlands
    However it still may happen before the end of the year and for me it would be the trigger to buy the octa !!!

  11. MattBerlin macrumors newbie

    Oct 4, 2009

    I would definitely wait. There are some new great products about to be launched now.

    Best regards

  12. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    Pretty much.

    The next unit will be based off the Gulftowns (6 cores), and they use the same LGA1366 socket and chipset. So they can re-use the boards by applying a firmware update (new microcode). The rest of the board, such as the Voltage Regulators will work as well.

    After that, who knows... :eek: They seem to have lost interest in this market, and dump the MP line all together. :rolleyes: :(
  13. bigbird macrumors 6502

    Aug 17, 2007
    I think you already answered your own question.
  14. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

    Sep 24, 2008
    Boon Docks USA
    I wouldn't be surprised if apple gives the mac pro a speed bump to carry it over until the gulftowns are ready to come out. But not until December.
  15. gugucom macrumors 68020


    May 21, 2009
    Munich, Germany
    I would see the probability for such an activity at under 10%. Apple have never touched the Mac Pro in less than one year and they demonstrated a very clear development and pricing policy that would indicate otherwise. Laptops got price cuts when the Mac Pro prices were hiked up. The desktop products are now cut off from development after only 3 years in the market (no SL for 2006 Power Macs).
  16. sboerup macrumors 6502

    Mar 8, 2009
    From my experience, even if they update the Mac Pro within 2 months of your purchase, they are more than likely to allow you to swap with a 10% restock fee possibly. Within first 30 days, they would probably do a straight swap.

    But, I don't think an update is imminent.
  17. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    The Gulftowns aren't scheduled to arrive until Q2 2010, which means next June at the earliest.
  18. gugucom macrumors 68020


    May 21, 2009
    Munich, Germany
  19. skyline r34 macrumors 6502

    skyline r34

    Oct 10, 2005
    San Diego
    I'm holding off until next year to buy my next Mac Pro but for know i'm currently waiting for Apple's 30 inch LED.
  20. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    I don't think it meant on the shelf at that time, but rather reviews, which is to be expected.

    I've not seen anything else that gives me confidence that it would release earlier either. Not that it's not possible, but I've a feeling Intel will prefer to "milk" the current line a bit longer, as the Gainestowns were late. ;)
  21. mrsir2009 macrumors 604


    Sep 17, 2009
    Melbourne, Australia
    None anytime soon. Certainly not in the next week, or month...:cool:
  22. gugucom macrumors 68020


    May 21, 2009
    Munich, Germany
    Milking would almost certainly not be a consideration. Development is negative cash flow and that is reversed the day you start selling the product. So nobody in his right mind would hesitate to launch a product that is ready. This was by far not the only source that claimed Westmere would come early. So the signs are there.


    2010 is a Tick year defined by the 32nm Westmere production technology. Within Westmere Gulftown was to launch with the earliest models in Q1 according to roadmaps.


    As Westmere is reportedly early we should really see this stuff in Q1. Anyway, it doesn't matter if those sixers will come two or three months earlier or later because Apple is selling to a captive market. They will not see a reason to rush into this. MP2,1 was an exception because it marked the end of a broken promise by Jobs.
  23. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    I understand your point, but I'm thinking in other terms as well.

    A "Tick" cycle is just a shrink. The real R&D was done on the previous "Tock", so the development costs aren't as high as you might think. Not that it's "cheap" though. ;)

    The unstable economy has likely had it's impact as well, such as not moving as many parts as Intel originally expected. That previous R&D is usually reclaimed first, and extending the release of the next part is one way to do that.

    I'm fairly familiar with Intel's Roadmap. The first image is really basic information to me, as it doesn't contain dates.

    The second can be interpreted as anywhere between Q1 & Q2, and is usually expressed as H1.

    Q2 is the latest I've seen, so if you've other links, I'd appreciate it, as I've not found anything I'd consider substantial by any means. (Sorry, I don't put 100% faith in the Inquirer). :eek: :p

    Ultimately, the difference between Q1 & Q2 won't actually matter to the future MP owners (Gulftown systems), as they'll buy them if planned to do so.

    The only reason for Apple to move at the same/similar time as any other vendor, is to compete with those vendors. Apple may have given up on this market segment though. But they can't make their customers wait too long, or they could give up on Apple and buy something else (assuming they're not so tied to OS X they can).

    Eventually, they may not have a choice.

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