New Mac mini is the new Mac Pro

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by jack_fungi, Oct 30, 2018.

  1. jack_fungi macrumors newbie

    jack_fungi

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2016
    #1
    Apple showcased (in today's keynote) several instances of Mac minis being stacked for improved performance and intense workloads. What if this is the "modular Mac Pro" Apple promised 1.5 years ago?

    Maybe there's some neat software coming that enables Mac minis to be daisy chained together with automatic load balancing across each machine?

    For expanded storage: RAID array
    For better GPU: eGPU
    More CPU/RAM: connect another Mac mini

    Or maybe the new Mac Pro will enable pros to daisy chain Mac minis to it for expanded performance.
     
  2. filterdecay macrumors regular

    filterdecay

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2017
    #2
    I doubt we will be able to chain them but this machine is probably what we get. Maxed ram and cpu with base ssd and you get a $2700 mac mini. Thats not too bad but you need to add thunderbolt chassis for it and pci-e cards. Ill be keeping an eye on this.
     
  3. ccsicecoke macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2010
    #3
    Mac Pro would be equipped with Xeon and ECC memory standard.
     
  4. filterdecay macrumors regular

    filterdecay

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2017
    #4
    apples window to getting my money is closing soon. then its hp z workstation with a bunch of keyboard hacks to keep my shortcuts correct.
     
  5. aaronhead14 macrumors 6502a

    aaronhead14

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    #5
    It's not. You bet your butt the new Mac Pro will be announced at WWDC 2019.
     
  6. vjicecool macrumors 6502

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    Jul 16, 2010
    #6
    is the new mac mini good for gaming?
    how much gb video card is?
     
  7. Elwe macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2006
    #7
    Correct that it is not (assuming you did not mean something more expansive). Apple has now publicly said more than once that the new Mac Pro will not be coming until next year.

    But if you are making the wider point . . . that it will be expandable via chaining someone . . . no one knows, and no leaks have occurred that make imminent sense. They said it will be expandable, and they admitted they backed themselves into a thermal corner before so they will likely not do that again . . . what I do know is that TB3 probably does not have enough bandwidth nor low enough latency to really be a scalable solution going forward. Right now . . . yes, sort of. For some users. But I would either look to TB4/some kind of PCIe 4.x interconnect if they are going that way. I am cool with PC towers, too, but it does not seem like Apple is anymore. Maybe it is something combined with some kind of seamless cloud service that handles a lot of the compute . . . I just cannot see something working long term with current tech.
     
  8. Rug_Dr macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2016
    #8
    Just bought mine. Maxed out except only 1TB SSD. Gets here a week from tomorrow. My late 2012 is still kicking.
     
  9. StellarVixen macrumors 68000

    StellarVixen

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2018
    Location:
    Earth
    #9
    Only if you add eGPU, with i5 or even better i7 this can be solid gaming machine. Integrated graphics inside are mediocre at best, it might let you play games from 10 years ago.
     
  10. namethisfile macrumors 65816

    namethisfile

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #10
    What is the deal with the photos of the stacked Mac Mini's? Can you buy 3 mini's and leverage the iGPU and CPU in real time when editing in FCP X or something? Or, is that just a render farm of sorts to help in encoding?

    What I mean by real time is while editing in FCPX, is it using multiple iGPU's in the minis to help crunch data on the app, so scrubbing and playback of high bit rate video are smooth or something?
     
  11. finchna macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 30, 2002
    #11
    needs 128/256 user upgradeable ram to move it towards pro.
     
  12. namethisfile macrumors 65816

    namethisfile

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #12
    I still don't know how stacking the new Mac Minis helps in intense workloads. Is that in real time? Are the CPU's and iGPU's being stacked here as well? Or is it just CPU? Is this the same method where the stacked Minis are just used as offload machines for rendering or encoding? Hence, not really "real time?"

    If, this is real time... how is this done? And, if this is real time, then, maybe this is probably what Apple meant by the upcoming "Modular" Mac Pro? Stackable Mac Pros?
     
  13. Game64 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2011
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    #13
    I'm convinced now more than ever the Mac Mini is not the new Mac Pro. Allow me to explain. Apple did a few major things during that keynote to show they're listening.

    1. They added back removable ram. This is something they didn't have to do, but did anyways. Removable ram makes upgrades and life easier. More importantly; it reduces the price of entry for the Mac Mini - As you can buy one and swap in more memory for cheaper than Apple sells it. I'm willing to bet Apple sells their ram and SSDs as more expensive due to business consumers willing to pay for it.

    2. They kept the form-factor of the Mac Mini similar, removed the hump on the bottom, and are hyping up it's professional use. For _YEARS_ people have used Mac Minis in data-centers for high-density computing. Hell, I'm a remote consultant that travels a lot - I have a mac mini in my bag as a portable server. (Yes, The TSA looks at me funny every week.) The thermals and size matter a lot in data centers.

    This is why they're stacked - So the aluminum shells can bleed heat out together. The space between the mini's acts as a small pathway for air to flow to cool them. Don't be surprised if MacStadium or someone else introduces a new server rack for them that takes advantage of this and forces air between them. Being closer together means more pressure, so faster moving air can move heat quickly.

    3. They positioned the Mac Mini as being prosumer. They've identified that many people don't need Xeon processors. They need solid processors, with good ram, solid storage and expansion. By adding 4 thunderbolt ports, removable ram, and enabling eGPU support. They've basically created a prosumer monster. I could go buy one right now and pair it with 2 eGPUs. Then run Windows and Linux in a VM with GPU Passthrough and game on the Mac Mini as well as do OSX work.

    -or- I could chain a bunch of GPU's together over Thunderbolt and use the Mac Mini as a bitcoin miner; use it to do GPU Data analyis, Etc. With a low barrier to entry.

    A top spec Mac Mini with the highest i7, 256gb storage, 10gbe, and 8gb of ram is 1399$. That is not out of range for a prosumer. Sure - When you add expansion equipment it gets more costly. But the point is; The Mac Mini has basically given us a glimpse into the future for the Mac Pro.

    ---

    The Mac Mini isn't a replacement for the Mac Pro, because it doesn't have ECC Memory, Xeon processors, enterprise/server grade hardware, etc. More importantly; I think Apple is going to go ham with the Mac Pro. The Mac Mini can handle a large chunk of the prosumer market. The iMac Pro can handle the rest.

    That leaves room in the market for Apple to announce and develop a truly one of a kind Mac Pro that is an amazing product. The problem is, it's going to cost not just one; But two kidneys and your daughters hand in marriage.
     
  14. cinealta, Oct 30, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018

    cinealta macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2012
    #14
    It's not. New Mac Pro will have true workstation CPUs (XEON) for mission-critical workload, error-correcting code (ECC) memory, much larger L3 cache than consumer i7 CPUs and no integrated consumer graphics.
     
  15. ctyrider macrumors 6502a

    ctyrider

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2012
    #15
    There is nothing "stacked" or "daisy chained" about Mac minis shown in MacStadium photos. They are simply a bunch of individual Minis stuck into specially made datacenter racks. MacStadium will rent them out to you for a monthly fee, and they are also looking at offering cloud type service, with virtualization layer added on top.


     
  16. filterdecay macrumors regular

    filterdecay

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2017
    #16
    update: I bought the z4. Apple should of done more sooner. Sorry. bitter sweet. Going from ibook g3 to water cooled g5's to the glory that was the 2.66ghz intel macpro to a 6core macpro to a 12 core macpro monster. black macbook to many macbook pros (I'll stay mac for my laptops). The pros carried apple through some dark times and then they shunted us for great money. No complaints I would do the same. The only thing is with an extra trillion dollars laying around you would think they could squeeze some off to keep innovating for us pros.

    Hp is ready to eat apples lunch btw. The z workstations have bios settings to use apple shortcuts. They know us.
     
  17. namethisfile macrumors 65816

    namethisfile

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2008
    #17
    I was referring to this photo from Appleinsider showing stacked minis in a video production workflow. The question is... Are they being leveraged in real time or is that just the usual farming of cpu cores as before?

    Here is the link to the photo:

    [​IMG]
     
  18. mikehalloran macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2018
    Location:
    The Sillie Con Valley
    #18
    Nonsense. Apple has told us more than enough to make an educated guess.

    The new Pro is being developed to run new, bleeding edge AV apps for the film industry. Apple told us this when they invited the TechCrunch article. The fact that CNET and others didn't read and understand it before writing all their "Apple must..." and "Apple will fail if they don't..." garbage doesn't mean that you shouldn't.
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/04/05/apples-2019-imac-pro-will-be-shaped-by-workflows/

    Since competing workstations like the Maya Box Rendering Station cost $13K (8core) to $150K (52core 1T RAM 8T SSD), I and many others expect the new New Mac Pro to $tart about where the iMac Pro ends. If it's a dime under $14,999.99 for the base model, I'll be very surprised. Then there's the new monitor Apple intends to introduce simultaneously that will add to the cost.

    The T2 chip allows multiple Minis to be harnessed together for real time AV rendering. There are already some YouTube videos showing this. Since the iMac Pro has the T2 also, I can see a stack of Minis next to an iMP crunching large video or animation files.

    Group enough together and the Mac Pro question becomes real — at about the same expected price. Big difference: The Mini is here now.

    The Lisa sold for $9,995 in 1983; the Mac+ for $2,400 in 1985 (when I bought mine), the NeXT for $6,500 in 1988 and so on. Adjust those prices for inflation if you dare.
     
  19. filterdecay macrumors regular

    filterdecay

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2017
    #19
    Thats insane. The hp workstations scale from $1200 to $40k. I would expect the new macpro to base at $3000 - $3500
     
  20. mikehalloran macrumors 65816

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    Oct 14, 2018
    Location:
    The Sillie Con Valley
    #20
    There is absolutely no reason to think this — especially after reading the article and seeing who the intended customer is, the intended use and reading the scant info about the apps being developed.

    There is the possibility that those new apps won't run on anything less but I doubt it after seeing demonstrations of the power of 6 Minis linked together rendering the same AV file.

    The one benefit I can hope for "the rest of us" is that this ultra high performance tech will trickle down to the more popular priced Macs.
     
  21. Spock macrumors 68000

    Spock

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    Jan 6, 2002
    Location:
    Vulcan
    #21
    I am afraid this new Mac Pro is going to be priced above the pro-sumer. I wish they would sell a base model with the 6 core i5, 256 GB SSD and 16 GB of ram for under $2,000
     
  22. mikehalloran macrumors 65816

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    Oct 14, 2018
    Location:
    The Sillie Con Valley
    #22
    No chance that Apple would ever release a Mac Pro with less horsepower than the iMac Pro.

    However, the 2018 Mini meeting that spec is $1,299 + mouse + keyboard = $1,547. You can add a good (but not spectacular) monitor for $400 to keep the whole thing under $2K.
     
  23. Nugget macrumors 68000

    Nugget

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2002
    Location:
    Houston Texas USA
    #23
    They already do. It costs $1,299. You can buy it today. It’s just called a Mac Mini now.

    [​IMG]
     
  24. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #24
    The new Mac mini is as fast as the old Mac Pro, but it's far from the new Mac Pro. I would expect the new Mac Pro to be a lot of faster (and expensive).
     
  25. Spock macrumors 68000

    Spock

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Vulcan
    #25
    Yeah, I get that but I'm talking about a modular Mac Pro that doesn't have a soldered in SSD or at least a couple drive bays to go with it and PCIe slots.
    --- Post Merged, Nov 9, 2018 ---
    Just like they would never release an iMac with more horsepower than the Mac Pro?
     

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24 October 30, 2018