Mac Pro - the End of an ERA?

thepixelpusher

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Jan 2, 2015
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Not trying to start a flame War here, but I cannot sugar coat it either. Apple has so undercut it's Professional users by not offering a modern customizable computer that has upgrade and expandability options like the competition on the WinPC side.

Here's an article that is basically a case study in the drip of Apple losing it's Pro users to Windows setups.

https://www.thepixellab.net/mac-vs-pc-as-a-motion-designer-the-end-of-an-era

For those that would scream, "make a Hackintosh", I'd say it's dicey to base my business work on a computer that could be bricked with an Apple update that my Hakintosh doesn't support or requires going to forums to constantly read up on how to handle updates. I don't need additional unbillable work!

I'm pissed. Apple dropped the Mac Pro market with the trash can Mac that didn't offer any expandability or customization and cost way more than comparable WinPC's. I do 3D, video (with compositing and motion graphics) and print advertising so I'm a power user. Macs just seem to be behind the curve for pro users wanting desktops that are modern and expandable and customizable.

Please in response, don't flame but offer tangible information why you agree/disagree. Let's keep this civil and productive.
 
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AidenShaw

macrumors P6
Feb 8, 2003
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The Peninsula
Not trying to start a flame War here, but I cannot sugar coat it either. Apple has so undercut it's Professional users by not offering a modern customizable computer that has upgrade and expandability options like the competition on the WinPC side.

Here's an article that is basically a case study in the drip of Apple losing it's Pro users to Windows setups.

https://www.thepixellab.net/mac-vs-pc-as-a-motion-designer-the-end-of-an-era

For those that would scream, "make a Hackintosh", I'd say it's dicey to base my business work on a computer that could be bricked with an Apple update that my Hakintosh doesn't support or requires going to forums to constantly read up on how to handle updates. I don't need additional unbillable work!

I'm pissed. Apple dropped the Mac Pro market with the trash can Mac that didn't offer any expandability or customization and cost way more than comparable WinPC's. I do 3D, video (with compositing and motion graphics) and print advertising so I'm a power user. Macs just seem to be behind the curve for pro users wanting desktops that are modern and expandable and customizable.

Please in response, don't flame but offer tangible information why you agree/disagree and why. let's keep this civil and productive.
The comment is my avatar.... It was a very short era.
 

Simon R.

macrumors 6502
Sep 25, 2006
405
124
I think everybody will agree with you and the article. We've been agreeing on that for many years. Only some die hard nMP fans will disagree :) And I fear the 2019 MP will be too little, too late. It's already way too late.
 

h9826790

macrumors G5
Apr 3, 2014
14,239
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Hong Kong
Not trying to start a flame War here, but I cannot sugar coat it either. Apple has so undercut it's Professional users by not offering a modern customizable computer that has upgrade and expandability options like the competition on the WinPC side.

Here's an article that is basically a case study in the drip of Apple losing it's Pro users to Windows setups.

https://www.thepixellab.net/mac-vs-pc-as-a-motion-designer-the-end-of-an-era

For those that would scream, "make a Hackintosh", I'd say it's dicey to base my business work on a computer that could be bricked with an Apple update that my Hakintosh doesn't support or requires going to forums to constantly read up on how to handle updates. I don't need additional unbillable work!

I'm pissed. Apple dropped the Mac Pro market with the trash can Mac that didn't offer any expandability or customization and cost way more than comparable WinPC's. I do 3D, video (with compositing and motion graphics) and print advertising so I'm a power user. Macs just seem to be behind the curve for pro users wanting desktops that are modern and expandable and customizable.

Please in response, don't flame but offer tangible information why you agree/disagree and why. let's keep this civil and productive.
I can't see any war on this topic, very clear that Apple only care about emoji or how the computer look, but not what professional need.

Also, making Hackintosh won't solve the issue. e.g. MacOS won't even support 3rd party GPU hardware decode / encode. That's not something rocket science, but just a very very basic function for video work.

An OS that cannot utilise the new hardware. Even making a high end Hackintosh is just a waste.
 

whooleytoo

macrumors 604
Aug 2, 2002
6,573
655
Cork, Ireland.
I think everybody will agree with you and the article. We've been agreeing on that for many years. Only some die hard nMP fans will disagree :) And I fear the 2019 MP will be too little, too late. It's already way too late.
There's nothing wrong with having the nMP as an option, but there needs to be an upgradable Mac Pro as well.

I'd love to have one for gaming & everyday use, it's preferable to having a Mac & gaming PC (don't have much room, don't want the extra clutter or power requirements). I just hope they'll offer a reasonably priced expandable model, rather than just a high-end box. The traditional objection against a low/medium end tower was that it'd cut into their professional Mac sales, but I'm not sure they have much left to lose any more.

I'd happily buy one today if it became available.
 
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Naimfan

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To answer your thread question, OP, yes. It is the end of an era; and that era ended with the introduction of the tcMP. Whatever value proposition it offered when new has, as filmak correctly notes above, has long since disappeared.

Whatever the new MP may be, it is far too late - anyone who relies on a powerful machine has decamped to Windows - not necessarily by desire, but need. And the iMP is, unfortunately, a dead end.

Perhaps Apple will surprise everyone and preview the new MP at WWDC, if only to stanch further bleeding. But it's hard to believe there's any blood left. And the chances appear very high that whatever the new MP is, it will disappoint most of those who have waited.

The beauty of the 4,1 and, especially, the 5,1 was that it had an element of looking to the future - it provided user-accessible expandability with RAM, storage, PCI, and GPU (and, if you don't mind the work, even CPU). If the next MP doesn't offer that same nod to the future, it will be a pointless exercise.
 

filmak

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Jun 21, 2012
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between earth and heaven
To answer your thread question, OP, yes. It is the end of an era; and that era ended with the introduction of the tcMP. Whatever value proposition it offered when new has, as filmak correctly notes above, has long since disappeared.

Whatever the new MP may be, it is far too late - anyone who relies on a powerful machine has decamped to Windows - not necessarily by desire, but need. And the iMP is, unfortunately, a dead end.

Perhaps Apple will surprise everyone and preview the new MP at WWDC, if only to stanch further bleeding. But it's hard to believe there's any blood left. And the chances appear very high that whatever the new MP is, it will disappoint most of those who have waited.

The beauty of the 4,1 and, especially, the 5,1 was that it had an element of looking to the future - it provided user-accessible expandability with RAM, storage, PCI, and GPU (and, if you don't mind the work, even CPU). If the next MP doesn't offer that same nod to the future, it will be a pointless exercise.
A very nice post. Fully agree.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Sep 21, 2010
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Sooooooo hard for me to stay out of this and not rant about the nMP, but I've had my say over and over again for years now. I'm letting it go. The cMP and nMP are both history now.
 
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AidenShaw

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nMP had a pretty good price for its components when it was new.
As with any Apple to <everyone else> price comparison - that only holds true if you need exactly the components that Apple uses. If you don't need two GPUs, buy a PC with one.

And with the trash can, if you treat the GPUs like the mid-range Radeons that they are rather than FirePros - the price comparisons aren't as good.
 

fuchsdh

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Jun 19, 2014
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I agree with most of your comments, but I don't think that this is true

nMP had a pretty good price for its components when it was new.
For today's standards, it is a shame to even discuss it.
Yep. The only issue is Apple keeping hardware around without updating it, and whether you need something Apple just plain doesn't provide (I have no idea why you'd need 15 USB ports, but there you go.)

As to the article linked I feel like some of the points are valid, and some sound like "this has more so it's better" nonsense. Okay, he illustrated the benefit of having multiple, swappable GPUs. He did not explain how he needed eight internal hard disks or the million USB ports.
 

decafjava

macrumors 68040
Feb 7, 2011
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Pretty much in agreement with this thread, even if you look at my sig and realise I am not a "pro" user at least not a power pro who is happy with my kit. I think it is really important for many reasons even ephemeral ones like the halo effect for Apple to pay attention to their pro consumers. Well those left.
 

thepixelpusher

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Original poster
Jan 2, 2015
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There's nothing wrong with having the nMP as an option, but there needs to be an upgradable Mac Pro as well.

I'd love to have one for gaming & everyday use, it's preferable to having a Mac & gaming PC (don't have much room, don't want the extra clutter or power requirements). I just hope they'll offer a reasonably priced expandable model, rather than just a high-end box. The traditional objection against a low/medium end tower was that it'd cut into their professional Mac sales, but I'm not sure they have much left to lose any more.

I'd happily buy one today if it became available.
"I'd love to have one for gaming & everyday use"

Good point, and with VR exceeding the specs of gaming, where does that leave the Mac!? Content used to be made on Macs, now gaming and VR are left behind as well as the 3D and heavy duty video production. Apple what are you thinking!!?? Tim Cook cannot set innovation goalposts for the company, but like Gill Amelio, he can only massage the existing product line and count beans.
 
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AidenShaw

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He did not explain how he needed eight internal hard disks or the million USB ports.
Why should he need to explain this? It's fairly obvious that if you need storage, more disk slots are better. A system with more internal slots is easier and cheaper to expand. (My Dell T3610 has six internal SSDs on 6Gbps SATA, and 24 external drives on 24 SAS RAID lanes.)

Same with USB ports - why split bandwidth across hubs when you can get a tower with more ports?

You make it sound like more disk slots and USB ports is a *bad* thing. It's a good thing.
 

thepixelpusher

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Jan 2, 2015
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I think everybody will agree with you and the article. We've been agreeing on that for many years. Only some die hard nMP fans will disagree :) And I fear the 2019 MP will be too little, too late. It's already way too late.
I'm seeing some reviewers on YouTube who paid 8K for an iMacPro display computer. Outrageous!!! Sure it's somewhat fast, but not much for gaming and way too expensive for the lackluster GPU performance for 3D software. Apple cannot see that past a few diehard users this pricetage to performance cannot fly with companies that need workstations, and small business power users like me. I'd rather stay on MacOS, but it's looking like I'll bite the bullet and go full WinOS if the Mac Pro is a pooch like the trash can. And I'm not going to mortgage my house to pay for it Apple, either!!!

Sorry for the rant, but Apple is a multi billion dollar company that is failing to innovate against the competition and is leaning too heavily on their portable smart phone/tablet market. Even in phones and tablets they are not matching some of the features of the competition.
 
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h9826790

macrumors G5
Apr 3, 2014
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Hong Kong
I agree with most of your comments, but I don't think that this is true

nMP had a pretty good price for its components when it was new.
For today's standards, it is a shame to even discuss it.
IMO, That's only true if you only consider the CPU / GPU / SSD spec, but not the "whole package"

The other workstations may be a little bit more expensive, but they are upgradable, have better cooling (or much better cooling), has multiple hot plug internal drive bays, able to run more CPU / RAM, can use CUDA cards, has ECC VRAM graphic cards, has card reader / optical drive, has HDMI 2.0, has multiple PCIe slots to utilise any PCIe 3.0 x16 cards, has longer warranty (usually)......

You pay a bit more, but you get much much more.

If you want to make a nMP has the same functions / hardwares (it's impossible anyway, because no way to get PCIe 3.0 x16 slots). It will be super expensive, just want to get a crippled empty PCIe slot on the nMP (obviously have to via a Thunderbolt chases) is expensive enough. And how much you have to pay for that in other work stations? Free. Back in 2013, I suspect the cost of getting four empty PCIe slot (via TB) may be already enough to buy another work station.

So, is the nMP really that cheap? Apple took aways lots of important hardwares but still charge more or less the same money. Then they call it comparable price.
 

dontpokebearz

macrumors member
Feb 16, 2018
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Maine
I really do think it’s the end of an era. I’m currently using/building my 4,1 to 5,1 Mac Pro and have it set to run Windows in Parallels. I have to say, Microsoft has done a fantastic job with Windows 10. It *feels* like an OS a professional would use, and looks like it. I know not everyone has fond memories of Microsoft, but they are company moving personal computing forward on laptops and desktops and I’m loving the care and progress made.

The next Mac Pro will be powerful, garuntee it. It will also be modular - but Apples definition of modular, not ours. It will most likely not have tons of expansion bays, or multiple PCIe slots like the cMP. It will probably be missing basic ports that every other tower has, and cost twice as much.

I love the cMP, but when this dies I’ll probably be moving to a Windows setup.
 
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mattspace

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Jun 5, 2013
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"I'd love to have one for gaming & everyday use"

Good point, and with VR exceeding the specs of gaming, where does that leave the Mac!? Content used to be made on Macs, now gaming and VR are left behind as well as the 3D and heavy duty video production. Apple what are you thinking!!?? Tim Cook cannot set innovation goalposts for the company, but like Gill Amelio, he can only massage the existing product line and count beans.
That's what I've become convinced of, the more time I spend in VR, and using VR-based tools to do my work. Start of the week, I installed a 20 foot high, suspended sculpture of a tree onto a stage, which I designed at 1:1 scale, entirely in VR with Tilt Brush.

I'm not interested in Apple's new "pro" display, because I don't care about screen-based tools any more - they're redundant for me, as is a display in an iMac. I want all my tools to be VR based, and I want to spend my workday standing, and walking about, rather than sitting at a desk developing RSI & the health effects of being sedentary.

Even for my photography practice - colour accurate VR goggles, which means all outside lightsources are eliminated, would be preferable to a traditional display.
 

Simon R.

macrumors 6502
Sep 25, 2006
405
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[doublepost=1525500956][/doublepost]
Yep. The only issue is Apple keeping hardware around without updating it, and whether you need something Apple just plain doesn't provide (I have no idea why you'd need 15 USB ports, but there you go.)

As to the article linked I feel like some of the points are valid, and some sound like "this has more so it's better" nonsense. Okay, he illustrated the benefit of having multiple, swappable GPUs. He did not explain how he needed eight internal hard disks or the million USB ports.
I need/have 7 internal SSD's in my cMP.... No need to put those SSD's (which I mainly use for sample streaming) outside the computer unless I have to as I don't need to take them anywhere.
 
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LightBulbFun

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Nov 17, 2013
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The comment is my avatar.... It was a very short era.
well your just counting the Mac Pro

I would say the upgradable long lasting Mac era started back with the Macintosh II with its 6 nuBus slots :)

(my personal favourite is the PowerMac 9500/9600, it was the second Generation PowerPC mac, the first with PCI slots and came out in 1995 but could be upgraded to a whopping 1.5GB of RAM with 12 RAM slots, it had 6 PCI slots and the CPU started at (with the 9500/120) a 120Mhz 604, but there where upgrades in the end that could take it all the way to a 1Ghz 7455 G4 allowing you to run 10.5.8 Leopard the Last PowerPC MacOS, on a machine from when PowerPC was only 1/2 years old :D)
 
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XNorth

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Feb 23, 2018
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Yes, end of an era, but that happened 5-6 years ago. I’m actually excited about the new era and what the “modular” Mac Pro will be. Of course the jury is still out, haven’t even convened yet, but if you’re a working pro and your bread and butter is tied to the MacOS ecosystem, the promise of new Mac Pro can’t come soon enough.
 
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barmann

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Oct 25, 2010
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The next Mac Pro will be powerful, garuntee it. It will also be modular - but Apples definition of modular, not ours. It will most likely not have tons of expansion bays, or multiple PCIe slots like the cMP. It will probably be missing basic ports that every other tower has, and cost twice as much.


That's the issue, isn't it ?
Apple's definition of Mac anything hasn't hit the spot in years .

At this point, I wonder if it'd be better if OSX became cross-platform , can of worms or not, and Apple ditched its computer line .
 
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