Mac Pro is not overpriced.

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Intelligent, Jun 24, 2014.

  1. Intelligent macrumors 6502a


    Aug 7, 2013
    I hate how people say that The Mac Pro is cheap compared to a similar Windows PC. People keep saying, : "Hey, i built an equivalent computer for 2000$". No, no you did not. Then i ask for the specs and they say "4 core i7". And they say some mediocre graphic card. Computer power is not measured in what games it can run. These computers usually don't have PCie SSD s, USB 3.0, Intel Xeon 12 core or Graphics Cards as good.

    See here:

    The maxed out Mac Pro costs 9600$, And that's certainly not cheap, but building an ALMOST equivalent Windows PC costs 11,500$.

    From a webpages called ""
    12-core Intel Xeon E5-2697 V2 CPU ($2750), two AMD FirePro W9000 graphics cards ($3,400 each), Asus Rampage IV Gene micro ATX motherboard ($280), Silverstone FT03 and Strider 850W PSU ($360), 32GB of Corsair Vengeance DDR3 RAM ($360), and two 512GB Samsung 840 Pro SSDs ($450 each). Plus a windows 8 copy. That is 11,500$

    Despite costing $2,000 more than the Mac Pro, the DIY PC isn’t even as good: It has 32GB of RAM instead of 64GB, and the PC doesn’t have Thunderbolt support. The Silverstone case, though similarly shaped, is still much larger than the cylindrical Mac Pro.
    Futurelooks also took a look at the entry-level Mac Pro ($3,000) and found that it was impossible to build a comparable DIY PC ($4,000).

    So for the absolute professionals, a Mac Pro is cheaper.
  2. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Aug 15, 2008
    I agree that comparing similar spec'd machines yields results close or even in the favor of the Mac Pro, and the argument of what you can get with a DIY build is pointless. But I don't think that's the primary argument this time around. Many would like the option of not having to run dual GPUs and significantly dropping the price, or even go the other direction and build a 24core behemoth that leaves the Mac Pro in the dust.
  3. thepowerofnone macrumors member

    Apr 10, 2011
    Anyone serious about their workstations knows that the Mac Pro is a competitively priced machine; sure you might get some people who think they know their stuff mouthing off about how their gaming computer can leave the Mac Pro for dust for less money because they overclocked to something silly and "that makes their computer so much better", but they are talking crap, a workstation is not comparable to a gaming rig because the gaming rig isn't under such heavy loads 24/7.

    The legitimate argument comes about when you look at the GPUs: GPUs are great, they are, and they are improving at a significantly faster rate than CPUs, one day GPUs will be the solution to everyone's computational needs, but at present they are not the top trump in all fields. If you look at CFD simulations and the processing required to solve them, currently a many-cored CPU focused machine trounces a GPU focused machine in most/all CFD packages. If I wanted a workstation come server for doing those sorts of things I'd go custom every day and run Linux on it; the point about custom-build is that you can get something that specifically suits you. However, given the strength in industry of Macs is in photography, film and design a GPU orientated machine which leans on OpenCL is the way for Apple to go with its flagship desktop.
  4. Umbongo macrumors 601


    Sep 14, 2006
    Lots of sites and people did these comparisons but they all fall down because the graphics cards in the Mac Pro are not two W9000s, nor are the other graphics card options the same as W5000s or W7000s. Please understand that most of the tech sites out there are not knowledgable about workstations and rarely approach things from the perspective of professional use - which can be inaccurately positive or negative in regard to Apple.

    You can get more raw performance - in OSX - for less than the top Mac Pro costs, but that doesn't make the Mac Pro overpriced because you can't ever match the Mac Pro. You can't get the thunderbolt connectivity, nor can you get cheap graphics cards that perform like workstation cards under Windows but consumer cards in OS X, nor can you get that form factor/noise level with the performance level - or OS X officially supported.

    What you can get is more CPU, GPU and I/O performance for less money with the option to get much more with more money. if we argue $9,600 isn't that much for some professionals, neither is $15,000 or $20,000 for others.

    You can get 12x 3.5Ghz cores, 64GB RAM, 6GB Titan Black, 2x512GB SSDs or something stupid fast like a 400GB Intel P3500 for $6,500.

    When you compare it to HP/Dell prebuilts its decent value, when you compare it to other Macs its decent because it offers more performance for a reasonable premium. If you go against custom hardware you can't compete for OS X performance. Where they are cheaper is if you want FirePro cards for Windows and are happy to run Windows on a Mac. Which to me is sort of counter active as the Mac Pro is not certified to run the applications the cards are.

    There are so many differing hardware requirements for "professional use" and the mac pro is trying to cater to content creators as best it can while being profitable for Apple. That can't possibly make it great in price and performance for everyone.
  5. Riwam macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2014
    Basel, Switzerland
    I agree with you.
    People who build themselves a computer must be skillful (years of learning and try and error time!) and invest a lot of time and energy until everything is available, put together and in good working condition (choosing, buying the components and building them together).
    If you count all those hours in terms of money, which you should to be fair, then the total cost of a DIY computer increases very very strongly!

    As to the opinion here mentioned (and in many other threads) that some people would prefer for instance only 1 GPU or maybe 2 CPU or more RAM slots, etc. if you count the BTO variations offered by Apple for the new MP (SSD, GPU, CPU and RAM) you arrive at 3x3x4x4 or 144 different configurations to choose.
    While many other possibilities are still not found among those 144, I assume that few manufacturers offer so many choices in any mass produced computer.
  6. MMcCraryNJ macrumors 6502

    Oct 18, 2012
    In some ways yes, in some ways no.

    The PC build has slower performing storage and no Thunderbolt support, as you stated.

    But the FirePro W9000 is a professional workstation graphics GPU, whereas the Firepros used the nMP are beefed up consumer-grade cards. They have no ECC RAM and don't perform as well as a dual W9000 setup would. There's a reason the GPU upgrades on the nMP are so cheap.

    In my opinion, this argument is a silly one to have, on both ends of the spectrum. Buy the professional machine that suits your work needs better.
  7. Riwam macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2014
    Basel, Switzerland
    Interesting to find once words opposed to those usually found. :D
  8. MMcCraryNJ macrumors 6502

    Oct 18, 2012
    I'm not sure I understand your response? Sorry, it's early and I haven't had my coffee yet ;)
  9. unplugme71 macrumors 68030

    May 20, 2011
    Can we just end the PC/Mac pricing debate finally?

    We all know the Mac's - be it more or less $ than the PC at purchase ends up being cheaper in the long run (MOST of the time) by time you factor in upgrade costs, anti-virus, additional software. Especially know that OS X upgrades are free, iWork and iLife are included, etc..
  10. handsome pete macrumors 68000

    Aug 15, 2008
    What are you talking about? The limitation in possible configurations is one of the drawbacks of the Mac Pro.

    So if we're talking "mass produced" workstations, then the big competitors would be HP and Dell. But you could probably throw Boxx into the conversation as well, though I'm sure their quantities are less than Apple's. You listed 3, 3, 4, and 4 options for SSD, GPU, CPU, and RAM respectively. The other retailers offer more options in every category, not to mention a slew of other categories altogether.


    No, we don't know that.
  11. fuchsdh macrumors 65816


    Jun 19, 2014
    In general, Macs aren't more expensive, and you do get far more if you decide to sell it down the line compared to most Windows PCs.

    The tradeoff of course is flexibility; I can get a Mac Pro for cheaper than an equivalent HP Z820,* but you can also go crazy with the customization options on the Z820.**

    *Insofar as you can compare the two; it's impossible to put a price on tangental things like size, heat, and noise because those may not matter at all to one person and be all-important to another too.

    **Albeit a lot of those customizations are stupid. You have, for instance, six options for network controllers, and absolutely no way to tell what the difference is between five of them (there's only one 10g Ethernet option, the rest are gigabit.) Having lots of graphics cards? Good. Having the system allow you to make customizations that are impossible for the PSU you've previously selected, et al? Stupid.)
  12. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    The Mac Pro isn't overpriced.

    It's just it's above the means of most people therefore if they can't afford, the best way is just call it overpriced. Best case of sour grapes.
  13. Demigod Mac macrumors 6502a

    Apr 25, 2008
    It's not quite fair to compare the D*00 series to the W**00 series FirePro, as the Mac Pro ones don't have ECC memory.

    Still, as many have pointed out, workstations are a completely different ballgame when it comes to price/performance/stability. Professionals do need as much speed as they can get, but stability, reliability, accuracy and technical support are more important considerations.

    That gaming PC might run rings around a Mac Pro in Crysis 3, but if a bit error causes an overnight 3D rendering job to go off the rails when project deadlines are tight, you could be in serious trouble.

    A creative professional or scientist does not have time to troubleshoot issues on a custom-built computer, isolate which part(s) went bad and wrangle out the warranty/support/replacement procedure with individual component manufacturers. They need to be able to take the broken machine to a single vendor who can repair it completely within a reasonable time frame. Apple excels in this with their widely available, local stores and their top of class customer service ratings.

    This is something the gamer d00ds who fully load up a $15k Mac Pro on the Apple Store, compare it to a $2k rig they built on PCpartpicker and claim Macs are a ripoff don't understand.
  14. rolemodel macrumors newbie

    Jun 25, 2014
    Let me help you and simply compare a few pc's with the same video card and cpu and same ram and same harddrive for you.

    Lets go to apple and pick their top macbook pro 15" inch

    Stats on the macbook pro::
    Price $2,599
    15" screen
    i7 2.3ghz Intel 4th gen
    Nvidia 750M video card
    512GB SSd drive
    16GB ram
    backlit keyboard
    HP PC notebook envy 15t-j100:
    Base Price $729
    Price with mods to adjustments seen below $885
    15.4" screen 1080p
    i7 2.4ghz INtel 4th gen
    Nvidia 740M video card
    1tb Hard drive
    12GB Ram
    512GB ssd $215 online
    backlit keyboard
    17" 1080p PLUS TOUCH SCREEN
    i7 2.20ghz Intel
    Nvidia 750M video card 4gb video ram
    1TB hard drive
    16GB Ram
    512gb ssd $215 online
    17" 1080p Plus touch screen
    i7 4th gen intel
    nvidia 750m video card 2gb video ram
    1tb hard drive
    16gb ram
    512gb ssd $215 online

    The 512 GB SSD $215 online

    Either way you look at it PC for the same parts is almost half the price.
    Plus the dell and hp have coupons which make the price less. Normally hp computers allow you to add different video cards easily but for some reason you can't right now i think it's because they are fading the 750m out for a new video card.
  15. N19h7m4r3 macrumors 65816


    Dec 15, 2012
    I'm sorry, nothing you posted is in regards to this topic or forum section, the Mac Pro. :confused:
  16. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    Its very expensive, more so then the older MPs were (for what you got) but over-priced. I'd say its a workstation quality computer and isn't over priced. Given the closed nature of the MP, the question arises is it a good use of your funds, or is another machine that may be easier to upgrade better but for what you spend, you do get a powerful Mac :)

    I wish I could afford one
  17. linuxcooldude macrumors 68020

    Mar 1, 2010
    We are comparing desktop Workstations, not laptops.
  18. 882188 macrumors regular

    Mar 18, 2014
    AMD W9000? LOL. The MacPro doesn't have that.

    The Mac Pro *is* overpriced.
  19. Cubemmal macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2013
    If you compare strict Apples to Apples (har har) then that's true. Where it fails is if you consider equivalent real world functionality.

    Consider, I just bought a Hex D700 nMP earlier this year for some $5k. A month or two later I built up a high end gaming desktop for about $3k. The gaming rig has an over clocked i7 and AMD 295x2. The GPU alone cost $1500, but it's the highest end GPU in the world (excluding the Titan Z for the moment) and is much faster than the D700's.

    OK, you are thinking that the Mac Pro has Xeons (Ivy Bridge note), and "FirePro" GPU's (whatever that means exactly), but you know on a personal use basis the gaming rig is faster, when playing games and in general use frankly. And it's considerably cheaper. But it isn't as small or as quiet.

    I think this explains the difference of opinion. When compared on specs the Mac Pro looks favorable. When compared in real use - ignoring aesthetics, a home brew wins on price (always cheaper) and performance (always better as you get the latest, which is never true for Mac Pros which are always at least slightly behind).
  20. slughead macrumors 68040


    Apr 28, 2004
    This. There is already a thread where a four year old mac pro can be upgraded with Two consumer graphics cards ($300 each) to perform in OS X slightly better than the nMP. If you're not using Windows, the D700 have ZERO advantage over a 280x. In fact the 280X is basically the same processor as the D700, just 20-30% higher clock, and the FirePro series have the addons which don't matter at all for OS X.

    The nMP is absolutely overpriced -- if that particular metric is all you look at. There are some things where it wins --- such as workstation applications in Windows (and Windows ONLY) such as AutoCAD (though I should note that they are *not* supported and therefore pros are unlikely to use it). FirePros have driver enhancements which mop the floor with Radeons in those particular apps (and no others). FirePro and Quadro graphics cards are insanely high priced, which accounts for more than the entire price advantage of the nMP over the DIY PC when smug tech bloggers attempt to compare the two (again, D700 is not supported by those Pro apps FirePro have any advantage in). There are others where it loses. If you value the "winning" areas a lot, it works out.
  21. EvilMonk macrumors regular


    Aug 28, 2006
    Montreal, Canada
    I did the same kind of comparison as you did when the first Mac Pro was released. I compared the pricing of a dual xeon 2.66Ghz dual core 4Gb radeon x1900xt to the equivalent Dell precision workstation available and the HP Z series workstation and I arrived in all cased to rougly the same price for all 3 systems (the HP was a little cheaper and the Dell like 100$ more) then when I got my 2008 Mac Pro I did the same price comparison and again... same result... Apple is fairly well placed in the price segment and is quite competitive :)
  22. Kryckter macrumors 6502


    Mar 12, 2009
    They are close to the competition. Yes if you build your own and just use comparable pieces you can come out ahead. But if you are looking for a complete system from a company with warranty among other things, they are pretty good buys!
  23. Riwam macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2014
    Basel, Switzerland
    And besides this facts concerning ready built commercial computers, people BUILDING their own PCs had to invest
    Since TIME IS MONEY, as long as you do not have ROBOTS doing the work for you (assuming you received the robots free of charge! :D ) any self built PC costs UNAVOIDABLE MUCH MORE than just the amount resulting of adding the prices of the parts used.

    To sum up I agree with those who found this discussion of little use.
    Let everyone believe what he wants and buy what he needs and can afford.
    Trying to change the opinion of people already convinced of anything is a useless waste of time with no chance to succeed. :p
  24. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    I love all the random newbies coming here with their statements that the Mac Pro is overpriced.
  25. evilpaddy macrumors regular

    Aug 2, 2012
    I've never understood the concept of something being overpriced. Monetary value is deemed by what I'm prepared to pay and what I'm prepared to sell it for.

    I have an 8c, 1TB, D700, 64GB. I don't plan to sell it and I wasn't phased with the purchase cost. It therefore has has no monetary value from the point of purchase.

    Our definitions of value for money will vary. I use my nMP for playing about with personal photos in Aperture/Lightroom/PS. I could do the same with my rMBP, or my various iMacs but I chose the nMP. Some will view my purchasing decisions as excessive, but I don't care. It does what I want it to do and I am happy with it.

    If other people find the outlay excessive, then don't buy it. I can't see the point of futile discussions over Apple's pricing structure. I admire the form and view it as any other piece of artwork I own. My BMW M1 is horrifically more expensive in Australia, but the price is somewhat fixed and I either take it or leave it. I doubt BMW or Apple care either way.

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