Need some feedback on new Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by lanceh5, Apr 4, 2014.

  1. lanceh5 macrumors member

    Sep 23, 2007
    I need some feed back concerning my next purchase which is a Mac Pro. I now have two iMacs and two Mac Books and a Mac Mini on a network, also have a two year old Apple TV.

    We have lots of old VHS tapes and movies (50 years worth) that I am converting with iMovie and iDVD. I am using Elgato to get the VHS tapes into the iMac. I am burning the movies to DVDs to send to the friends and relatives involved. I have made three “projects” and burned to DVDs. Basically I am extracting clips of the DVDs by subject and adding titles and some freeze frames. Nothing too advanced. As I climb the learning curve, I may do more.

    The last “project” consisted of extracting a 9 minute clip from a 28 minute DVD. I got a message the iMovie would take 8 hours to “finalize” the 9 minute iMovie. I did not wait to see how long that actually took so just went to bed. The old 2009 2,8 GHz 27 inch Core i7 iMac is not the fastest computer on the block.

    So I am going to purchase a new lower end Mac Pro:

    $700 - G-Tech 2TB G-DOCK ev Hard Drive with Thunderbolt 2
    $1,000 - Apple Thunderbolt Display (27-inch)
    $500 - 3.5GHz 6-core with 12MB of L3 cache
    $300 - 512GB PCIe-based flash storage

    Total cost , $5,500

    I have over 28,000 photos and also use VM Ware Fusion to run Win 7 and some apps. So external storage is important.

    My Newer Tec external 2TB Firewire 800 mirror drive does have a USB 3 port so that drive should work OK.

    I am still going to need a DVD burner and SD card reader.

    One of the questions that I have concerns my USB 2 hub which has three printers and two external backup hard drives connected to it. Will the USB 2 male plug fit to the new Mac Pro USB 3 slot? I have done an internet search to answer this question and have not found it.
  2. ashman70 macrumors 6502a

    Dec 20, 2010
    I think a newer Mac Pro would be overkill for what you do, is there any reason you have not considered a newer iMac?

    The newer iMac's have both USB 3 and thunderbolt, so you would be able to use your external storage just fine.

    Your USB 2 hub will fit in the USB 3 slot fine, but only run at USB 2 speeds.

    I honestly think that most of the GPU and CPU power of the new Mac Pro would be wasted on what you do on your mac now. The newer iMac's are quite powerful and I think more suited to the kind of work you do, I think your money would be better spent in this direction, not that you wouldn't enjoy the new Mac Pro.

    Just my 2 cents.
  3. DFTU101 macrumors member

    May 16, 2008
    I would agree with the last post. The new iMac is really all you need and the screen is better than on the Apple display which is really overpriced and in need of an update. The newer iMac display is less glossy and more pleasant to view for longer periods. That said, sometimes we just "want" something and "want" it at whatever price. We try to justify it. The nMP is in this category for me. It's definitely overkill for what I'd use it for (and it seems what you'd use it for) but I still "want" it.
  4. Riwam macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2014
    Basel, Switzerland
    I am in the same situation...

    I can perfectly understand you. Not everything is rationality and logic.
    The nMP casts fascination on every person who loves not only power but design, even if for many users it is an overkill (and the price as well!). :)

    As to the advises to prefer an iMac, the future possibilities a nMP offers the day one actually needs that power and speed and the many ports for external connections, cannot be compared with those of an iMac (nothing new...).

    Personally I prefer separate display and computer.
    If one part has a problem you don't need to send for repair the whole machine. To ship an iMac is not an easy task.:eek:
    Besides if one day you want a new display or the old one dies, you can do it with a nMP (or with a Mac Mini) but not if you buy an iMac.
    By the way I asked myself why a powerful new Mac Mini was not mentioned as a possibility among the answers.
    Wouldn't it perform fine for the tasks the OP mentioned? :confused:
  5. pertusis1 macrumors 6502

    Jul 25, 2010
    I am going to humbly disagree. I think the OP will love the new MP, and will regret getting another iMac. He has a TON of video to crunch through, and if his time is money (which it is to most people considering a MP), I think the nMP is not a bad value proposition. With the iMacs, heat dissipation is a real concern with significant transcoding, and the useful life tends to be limited to about 4 years (for the casual user, less for someone using it for media work). I'll bet he gets significantly more time out of a nMP.

    On this one point I completely agree with the responses thus far. I'm not sure the current display is a great deal. You might consider using your iMac for a screen for a while. I expect Apple will update their screen choices before too long.
  6. pertusis1 macrumors 6502

    Jul 25, 2010
    RE: Mac mini as video transcoder...

    I tried this. Picked up a 2.6 i7 with 16 GB ram, installed a SSD, and started to work on my ASCVD and Hi8 home video collection. Exporting 50 minutes of 1080 video from FCPX took over 24 hours of having all 4 cores pegged near 100% with the fan running at full whine; and using the computer for other tasks during that time seemed to destabilize it and cause crashes. It was very frustrating, so I overreacted and got a 12-core 5,1 MP, which actually allowed me to make some progress.
  7. AidenShaw macrumors P6


    Feb 8, 2003
    The Peninsula
    This statement is simply wrong - had you used the word "some" instead of "every" it would be OK.

    I am mystified by the new Mini Pro, not fascinated.

    Mystified that
    • max of 12 cores, not the 24 cores that the CPUs are capable of supporting
    • only 40 PCIe lanes, not the 80 lanes that the CPUs are capable of supporting
    • 4 DIMM slots, not the 24 slots that the CPUs are capable of supporting
    • forcing dual mid-range ATI graphics cards, rather than high end options from both ATI and Nvidia
    • 400 watt power supply - are they on drugs?
    • no PCIe slots
    • one proprietary internal hard drive
    • weird form factor with ports and power switch on the backside

    It's like Apple looked at every design mistake made on the Apple Cube and decided to square them.
  8. Riwam macrumors 6502a


    Jan 7, 2014
    Basel, Switzerland
    Everyone is free to have his opinion

    I certainly accept your correction to "some".
    However in spite that all the points you mention are true, I am still fascinated by this new kind of workstation.
    As with classical music, only time will show what is valuable and what is worthless.
    I am looking forward to the day the nMP arrived to me only (fearing) hoping it comes with no bugs.
    I do not pretend to be reasonable but life has other sides besides reason in my humble opinion.

    Fast cars are even much more expensive, much more dangerous, harm the environment and are in my opinion absolutely unnecessary for most people in the whole world.
    Still the people who love them and can afford them(!) are ready to spend considerable more money and wait considerably longer than the waiting time for a nMP, to get one.
    So if buying a nMP is crazy, there are plenty of things much more insane.

    But your arguments against a nMP are shared by many people and those people won't buy such a computer.
    Their free decision.

    P.S. The mistakes of the Cube are not being "squared" with the nMP, maybe just "rounded" :)
  9. phrehdd macrumors 68040


    Oct 25, 2008
    I admit I am not a fan of the iMac (have had 3 over time). I presently use a Mac Mini and have owned a Mac Pro in the past as well.

    I do believe that the Imac 27" is not a bad deal for what you want to do. The new Mac Pro also has its advantages. Does your software take advantage of the particular GPU in the new Mac Pro? If not, then you could also consider an older Mac Pro refurb which has some advantages over the new MP.

    You still get 6-12 core CPU that rate well
    You get some better choices of GPU (NVidia comes to mind) for specific apps.
    Load inside your MP at least 4 drives without needing an external case.
    While there is not TB connection, quality USB3 and eSATA cards fill the niche.
    Add internally a BD read/writer or external.

    Last - whatever you decide to get, think carefully about all your peripherals so you don't have any buyer's remorse but instead know that your peripherals (external drives etc.) make sense for the long run and are cost effective. - This includes potentially additional monitor.

    Just more peanuts from the gallery.....

    Mac Mini 2.6 w/SSD/16g RAM
    Photoshop CS6, Capture One Pro, Virtual w/Win 7
    External BD read/writer
    NEC 24" PA241W calibrated monitor
    various external drives plus 2x QNAP NAS

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