Mac Pro price thoughts and Dell comparison

strausd

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Jul 11, 2008
2,997
1
Texas
So I was lookin at the new Mac Pro today, like many others, and was actually pleased with the update, unlike many others. (Please, don't even try and talk about how upset you are that it didn't get USB 3.0, blu ray, lightpeak, or anything like that. How could you possibly think that would actually come out on this update?)

So first off, if anyone knows the price of the 12-core 2.93 GHz option, I would love to know what it is. I looked on Apples site and built an 09 8-core 2.66 GHz with a 1TB hard drive and it was $4800, and the 12-core MP 2.66 GHz is $5000, not a huge difference if you are already spending that much money. Also, the 2010 12-core MP comes with a much better GPU, faster RAM, built in wifi, and for what its worth a magic mouse. Would you consider those things worth $200? I would...

Considering the prices are so close, an 8-core upgrade from 2.66 to 2.93 is $1200, maybe it will be close to that for the 12-core? Maybe even the same? Especially since the difference between the xeon 5500s and 5600s is extremely minimal, only $30 for the 2.66 GHz CPU.

Ok anyways, I have seen some threads on here about dell workstations being cheaper than a mac pro with better performance. Not so sure I agree with that...

I went on Dells website, got the base dual processor workstation with a 64 bit OS and put dual six-core 2.66 GHz CPUs in it. The other stuff included in the computer is as follows:
2GB DDR3 1066 MHz
512MB NVIDIA Quadro NVS 420
250GB Hard Drive

That is all for the dell workstation. How much does Dell charge for this? A whopping $5400!!!

Now a 2010 Mac Pro with dual 2.66 GHz processors and the following:
6GB DDR3 1333 MHz (more and faster RAM)
ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB (better GPU)
1TB Hard Drive (bigger hard drive)

How much? $5000.

I really don't see why people say dell is cheaper. Maybe for a crappier computer, but for a comparable one, no. The Mac Pro has better specs and costs less and will most likely last longer.

Thoughts?
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,390
33,009
Boston
S
I really don't see why people say dell is cheaper. Maybe for a crappier computer, but for a comparable one, no. The Mac Pro has better specs and costs less and will most likely last longer.

Thoughts?
People make the comparisons with the consumer lines not the workstation line. I'm not familiar with their workstations, so I cannot comment on them
 

Hellhammer

Moderator emeritus
Dec 10, 2008
22,164
581
Finland
DP Mac Pro is reasonably priced but lets take a look at UP version:

Dell Precision T3500

2.8GHz quad core Xeon
4GB 1333MHz DDR3 ECC
512MB NVIDIA Quadro FX 580
250GB HD

Price: 1334$

Mac Pro

2.8GHz quad core Xeon
3GB 1066MHz DDR3 ECC
1GB ATI 5770
1TB HD

Price: 2499$

That's nearly twice the $. The low-end MP is just horribly overpriced.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,390
33,009
Boston
One thing I did notice, is the ability to have true professional GPUs. While they're quite expensive, at least the buyer can choose them if they wish. Not so with the MP, a horribly short list of graphic cards :(
 

Umbongo

macrumors 601
Sep 14, 2006
4,934
54
England
One thing I did notice, is the ability to have true professional GPUs. While they're quite expensive, at least the buyer can choose them if they wish. Not so with the MP, a horribly short list of graphic cards :(
Just isn't the money there to have a big range of graphics cards for the Mac Pro, nor to have highly optimised drivers like the workstation cards.
 

Gonk42

macrumors 6502
Jan 16, 2008
288
0
near Cambridge
I may be a little out of date as I was doing comparisons a year ago, but I think the following points are still valid.

For list price Apple and Dell are very similar for DP systems.

But, you can get Dell systems much cheaper than list while the only discounted option for Apple is refurbished and even these are only discounted to the same extent as the student discount in UK (i.e. about 17%). Dell will always knock at least 10% off their prices and there are a number of resellers that sell Dell refurbished systems at huge discounts. (My system is a dual 5570 (2.93GHz) T5500 with 24GB of RAM and a Quadro 580 card and it cost less than £2,000 - an equivalent Mac Pro even with 3rd party RAM was well over £5,000).

For SP systems Apple are very expensive because they use DP components (case, power supply etc) and just change one board. Dell, with the T3500, have the option of a scaled down system and can charge less.

The Mac Pro is still a nice system but prices, I suspect, will never again reach the bargain levels of the 08 models.
 

Eric-PTEK

macrumors 6502
Mar 3, 2009
450
2
Missing one point.

Even though you may say the 5770 is a better GPU than the Quadro when you pick up the phone and call your vendor that you buy your $8,000 software you run on your MP is not running on one of their APPROVED GPU's like a Quadro or a FireGL then how much you paid for your Mac or Dell matters little.

You'll be buying a Dell workstation, or any other workstation, with an approved hardware list.

Those who buy MP's or true PC Workstations will buy around their vendors approved list because in those situations the hardware is usually the cheapest thing to buy.
 

Winni

Suspended
Oct 15, 2008
3,205
1,190
Germany.
I really don't see why people say dell is cheaper. Maybe for a crappier computer, but for a comparable one, no. The Mac Pro has better specs and costs less and will most likely last longer.

Thoughts?
Yes, I have some thoughts. Since you are comparing workstation class machines, in other words: BUSINESS machines, you should drop your fanboy glasses and take a realistic look at your comparison.

The Dell has a workstation class graphics card (not a consumer graphics card as the Mac Pro has it) AND the Dell comes with professional business support and warranty.

Next day on-site warranty is something that you cannot buy from Apple for all the money in the world. If my Dell workstation breaks today, I am guaranteed to have a replacement tomorrow morning AT THE LATEST. They bring me that machine or send me a technician to fix it. And yes - I've been there and done that and know from first hand experience that Dell actually delivers on those promises. You can even have four hours-same-business day service if you pay the little extra. And when you buy that kind of service, you are also guaranteed to reach a Dell technician on the phone within a wait period of 30 seconds MAXIMUM.

You don't have to make an appointment at a ridiculous Genius Bar to bring your computer to get it fixed. You don't have to wait one or two weeks for your machine when it needs to be repaired.

Sure, the Mac Pro might look nicer, and it certainly is much heavier. But if that machine is critical to your business, you're much better off with a workstation from Dell because of the service that comes with it.
 

strausd

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Jul 11, 2008
2,997
1
Texas
Yes, I have some thoughts. Since you are comparing workstation class machines, in other words: BUSINESS machines, you should drop your fanboy glasses and take a realistic look at your comparison.

The Dell has a workstation class graphics card (not a consumer graphics card as the Mac Pro has it) AND the Dell comes with professional business support and warranty.

Next day on-site warranty is something that you cannot buy from Apple for all the money in the world. If my Dell workstation breaks today, I am guaranteed to have a replacement tomorrow morning AT THE LATEST. They bring me that machine or send me a technician to fix it. And yes - I've been there and done that and know from first hand experience that Dell actually delivers on those promises. You can even have four hours-same-business day service if you pay the little extra. And when you buy that kind of service, you are also guaranteed to reach a Dell technician on the phone within a wait period of 30 seconds MAXIMUM.

You don't have to make an appointment at a ridiculous Genius Bar to bring your computer to get it fixed. You don't have to wait one or two weeks for your machine when it needs to be repaired.

Sure, the Mac Pro might look nicer, and it certainly is much heavier. But if that machine is critical to your business, you're much better off with a workstation from Dell because of the service that comes with it.
First off, are you on your period?

Second, Mac Pros don't have near as many problems as a Dell workstation might have. They are much more reliable. And considering that you have had to have someone else come fix it for you, that doesn't make me want to get one.

Sure, there are more options for GPUs, but it has always been that way and always will be. I was just pointing out the price difference between the base 12-core Mac Pro and a Dell with the same CPUs, that's all.

And they aren't only business machines. I know plenty of people who have them to do things that have nothing to do with running a business or using it for business related matters.
 

Umbongo

macrumors 601
Sep 14, 2006
4,934
54
England
First off, are you on your period?

Second, Mac Pros don't have near as many problems as a Dell workstation might have. They are much more reliable. And considering that you have had to have someone else come fix it for you, that doesn't make me want to get one.

Sure, there are more options for GPUs, but it has always been that way and always will be. I was just pointing out the price difference between the base 12-core Mac Pro and a Dell with the same CPUs, that's all.
One big difference is you can call a Dell sales rep and get a 12 core workstation a lot cheaper than they are listed online for. Not as easy with Apple, even more so these days and likely not for a first time customer just needing a single system. Also those Dell systems will come down in price online.
 

strausd

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Jul 11, 2008
2,997
1
Texas
One big difference is you can call a Dell sales rep and get a 12 core workstation a lot cheaper than they are listed online for. Not as easy with Apple, even more so these days and likely not for a first time customer just needing a single system. Also those Dell systems will come down in price online.
True, but the list price is still cheaper for the Mac Pro. And it's no surprise that Apple doesn't lower their prices over time. But right now, the Mac Pro is closest in cost to it's actual value, not saying exact, just the closest it will ever be. And that's only because it will continually lose value as it gets older, hope that made sense.

But ya, I do agree that Dell has better GPU options, but then again EVERY pc has better GPU options.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,390
33,009
Boston
Second, Mac Pros don't have near as many problems as a Dell workstation might have. They are much more reliable. And considering that you have had to have someone else come fix it for you, that doesn't make me want to get one.
Do you have any statistics/sources to back up that claim. Yeah its easy to say dell sucks when we're talking consumer computers, but business workstations are a different class.

And they aren't only business machines. I know plenty of people who have them to do things that have nothing to do with running a business or using it for business related matters.
They are geared for business, just like the MP is geared towards the profession instead of the run of the mill consumer.

Also don't discount the warranty/next day replacement by saying macs don't break. When a person relies on his workstation to make money and meet deadlines, its imperative to ensure that if something does happen, you can get a replacement fairly quickly. Lets not fool ourselves either. Macs do break down, maybe not often, but they do.
 

strausd

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Jul 11, 2008
2,997
1
Texas
Do you have any statistics/sources to back up that claim. Yeah its easy to say dell sucks when we're talking consumer computers, but business workstations are a different class.


They are geared for business, just like the MP is geared towards the profession instead of the run of the mill consumer.

Also don't discount the warranty/next day replacement by saying macs don't break. When a person relies on his workstation to make money and meet deadlines, its imperative to ensure that if something does happen, you can get a replacement fairly quickly. Lets not fool ourselves either. Macs do break down, maybe not often, but they do.
Well considering you just agreed that Macs don't break down as often, do I still need to back it up? Everyone I know that has come from a PC to a Mac has never had near as many problems, and people on here have talked about a Mac Pro being way more reliable than a dell workstation, do you ask them to back up their personal experiences?

I don't see why everyone has to get so dang defensive so quick. I started this thread to state a fact about the base MP with 12-core 2.66 and a base dell workstation with 12-core 2.66.

Its like all you people have to be the smartest nerd around and thats why you jump on everyone all the time and have to disagree in some way, shape, or form. This happens all the time on these forums, what is wrong with you people?

And of course now someone will quote that and say something against it, it happens every time.
 

strausd

macrumors 68030
Original poster
Jul 11, 2008
2,997
1
Texas
That's up to you, but I'd rather not take a chance and I do back up my data.
As do I. I am also thinking about having a RAID 1 in my Mac Pro when I get it for extra protection. Do you think the Apple RAID card would be worth it or just do a software RAID?
 

SnowLeopard2008

macrumors 604
Jul 4, 2008
6,772
8
Silicon Valley
Yes, I have some thoughts. Since you are comparing workstation class machines, in other words: BUSINESS machines, you should drop your fanboy glasses and take a realistic look at your comparison.

The Dell has a workstation class graphics card (not a consumer graphics card as the Mac Pro has it) AND the Dell comes with professional business support and warranty.

Next day on-site warranty is something that you cannot buy from Apple for all the money in the world. If my Dell workstation breaks today, I am guaranteed to have a replacement tomorrow morning AT THE LATEST. They bring me that machine or send me a technician to fix it. And yes - I've been there and done that and know from first hand experience that Dell actually delivers on those promises. You can even have four hours-same-business day service if you pay the little extra. And when you buy that kind of service, you are also guaranteed to reach a Dell technician on the phone within a wait period of 30 seconds MAXIMUM.

You don't have to make an appointment at a ridiculous Genius Bar to bring your computer to get it fixed. You don't have to wait one or two weeks for your machine when it needs to be repaired.

Sure, the Mac Pro might look nicer, and it certainly is much heavier. But if that machine is critical to your business, you're much better off with a workstation from Dell because of the service that comes with it.
Dell Support is synonymous for NO Support. Apple Support is rated #1 year after year in consumer and business markets. I've always spend more time dealing with Dell than Apple. Heck, Dell just basically gave me the finger over the phone. Apple welcomed me with open arms and did repairs in a short time. This goes for all of their products, not just their business oriented ones.

Second, since we're talking business, who cares if a machine is heavier than another? This isn't consumer space, that lightest and thinnest look really cool.

Lastly, Dell gives you those options for technicians to come and repair your machine because the machine itself is extremely poor quality. Dell was recently sued for using cheap components that caused the entire machine to stop working. Apple has never been sued for using cheap components that stopped the machine from working. Macs are built with quality as their #1 priority. It's not just the business machines (Mac Pro, Xserver, etc.) that have quality, it's every machine from the Mini to the Mac Pro and everything in between.

Seriously, what are you smoking? It might just revolutionize the word "high".
 

NoSmokingBandit

macrumors 68000
Apr 13, 2008
1,579
1
The kicker is that apple will still be charging top-dollar for the Pro 18 months from now when Dell has already updated their line and lowered the price of a comparable model. The Pro is a better deal for the first few weeks, then Dell usually gets ahead.
 

Eidorian

macrumors Penryn
Mar 23, 2005
29,085
290
Indianapolis
Dell Support is synonymous for NO Support. Apple Support is rated #1 year after year in consumer and business markets. I've always spend more time dealing with Dell than Apple. Heck, Dell just basically gave me the finger over the phone. Apple welcomed me with open arms and did repairs in a short time. This goes for all of their products, not just their business oriented ones.
I believe you've transposed Apple and Dell in this paragraph.

I avoid Apple corporate and their reps whenever I can.
 

sbrage2000

macrumors member
Jul 1, 2006
60
0
I don't see why everyone has to get so dang defensive so quick. I started this thread to state a fact about the base MP with 12-core 2.66 and a base dell workstation with 12-core 2.66.
You did ask for "Thoughts". If you don't want to hear other people's opinions, you probably shouldn't ask.
 

cube

Suspended
May 10, 2004
16,983
4,965
Somebody please price a Phenom II workstation with ECC for a real comparison.
 

SnowLeopard2008

macrumors 604
Jul 4, 2008
6,772
8
Silicon Valley
I believe you've transposed Apple and Dell in this paragraph.

I avoid Apple corporate and their reps whenever I can.
Nope. I haven't dealt with either myself but I have seen my Dad deal with Dell at work. He's one of the IT guys and bought Dell workstations and servers for the company. He spent lots of time on the phone (read: on hold) with Dell and ended up returning most of the equipment. Dell screwed up his order, forgetting to ship keyboards, mice, etc. that he paid for. Display cables were missing, workstations didn't boot and a whole lot of other problems. He just bought a Mac Pro a month or so ago to use as a server. Funny thing is, he spent about 2-3x more with Dell equipment than he did with "outdated" Mac Pros but the Mac Pros performed better and took less time to get up and running. Oh, and no phone calls or being put on hold because he's yet to encounter a problem with the Mac Pros.

Less is more.
 

Eidorian

macrumors Penryn
Mar 23, 2005
29,085
290
Indianapolis
Nope. I haven't dealt with either myself but I have seen my Dad deal with Dell at work. He's one of the IT guys and bought Dell workstations and servers for the company. He spent lots of time on the phone (read: on hold) with Dell and ended up returning most of the equipment. Dell screwed up his order, forgetting to ship keyboards, mice, etc. that he paid for. Display cables were missing, workstations didn't boot and a whole lot of other problems. He just bought a Mac Pro a month or so ago to use as a server. Funny thing is, he spent about 2-3x more with Dell equipment than he did with "outdated" Mac Pros but the Mac Pros performed better and took less time to get up and running. Oh, and no phone calls or being put on hold because he's yet to encounter a problem with the Mac Pros.

Less is more.
I've learned to be hopelessly pessimistic with Apple's support and optimistic with Dell.

It gets tiresome when phone representatives tell you that they're doing you a favor by repairing your hardware that's still under warranty. If I'm going to get our Apple hardware fixed it's at the local AASP and not the patronizing and condescending mothership.

We've switched over to Lenovo off of CDW-G lately since we can get machines in record time compared to Dell's just in time production. I have a closet full of 10 Dell Dimension towers ready to deploy for basic workstations. Did I mention they're Pentium 4 machines?
 

CaoCao

macrumors 6502a
Jul 27, 2010
783
2
So I was lookin at the new Mac Pro today, like many others, and was actually pleased with the update, unlike many others. (Please, don't even try and talk about how upset you are that it didn't get USB 3.0, blu ray, lightpeak, or anything like that. How could you possibly think that would actually come out on this update?)

So first off, if anyone knows the price of the 12-core 2.93 GHz option, I would love to know what it is. I looked on Apples site and built an 09 8-core 2.66 GHz with a 1TB hard drive and it was $4800, and the 12-core MP 2.66 GHz is $5000, not a huge difference if you are already spending that much money. Also, the 2010 12-core MP comes with a much better GPU, faster RAM, built in wifi, and for what its worth a magic mouse. Would you consider those things worth $200? I would...

Considering the prices are so close, an 8-core upgrade from 2.66 to 2.93 is $1200, maybe it will be close to that for the 12-core? Maybe even the same? Especially since the difference between the xeon 5500s and 5600s is extremely minimal, only $30 for the 2.66 GHz CPU.

Ok anyways, I have seen some threads on here about dell workstations being cheaper than a mac pro with better performance. Not so sure I agree with that...

I went on Dells website, got the base dual processor workstation with a 64 bit OS and put dual six-core 2.66 GHz CPUs in it. The other stuff included in the computer is as follows:
2GB DDR3 1066 MHz
512MB NVIDIA Quadro NVS 420
250GB Hard Drive

That is all for the dell workstation. How much does Dell charge for this? A whopping $5400!!!

Now a 2010 Mac Pro with dual 2.66 GHz processors and the following:
6GB DDR3 1333 MHz (more and faster RAM)
ATI Radeon HD 5770 1GB (better GPU)
1TB Hard Drive (bigger hard drive)

How much? $5000.

I really don't see why people say dell is cheaper. Maybe for a crappier computer, but for a comparable one, no. The Mac Pro has better specs and costs less and will most likely last longer.

Thoughts?
Dell sucks, for good PC computing use Maingear

Quantum SHIFT Xeon
Dual Hexacore @2.66
6GB DDR3-1333 ECC
HD 5870 1GB (I think we can agree...)
12 DDR3 DIMM slots (Mac Pro has 8)
1TB Caviar Black (six slots compared to Mac Pros 4)
Lifetime Service Labor and Phone support with 2 years hardware support

Price? $5476

Better GPU, More RAM slots (96GB Max, they sell 8GB DIMMs too...), More 3.25" slots (6 vs. 4) and much better warranty

@Cube, more≠better
 
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