now that nMP is out...will they refresh it every year?


maflynn

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I'd think not, at least for the first year, i.e., we'll not see an update in 2014
 

peabo

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It will get refreshed with each new Xeon E5 release from Intel. We're not going to see another 3 year wait for a refresh at the very least.
 

bcuzawd

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Dec 25, 2013
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I would think not initially. Software (Autodesk, Adobe, etc) still needs to update to utilize the new configurations (Dual GPU's) to their fullest potential.

I think 2015 may see some minor hardware changes.
 

koban4max

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I would think not initially. Software (Autodesk, Adobe, etc) still needs to update to utilize the new configurations (Dual GPU's) to their fullest potential.

I think 2015 may see some minor hardware changes.
what sort of hardware would you think? hdmi? tb3? usb 4?
 

bcuzawd

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Dec 25, 2013
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what sort of hardware would you think? hdmi? tb3? usb 4?
It may be possible to upgrade the HDMI through firmware, so we'll have to see on that front.

Doubtful about the TB and USB upgrades.

I was thinking more along the lines of stuff we wouldn't really notice. More "tweaks" to the hardware after the models have been in the market and issues arise.
 

deconstruct60

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It may be possible to upgrade the HDMI through firmware, so we'll have to see on that front.
HDMI 2.0 requires a different physical connectivity as far as input goes to get the "dual view". That won't be a 'firmware' upgrade. Without 'Dual View' given the constraints of the current 4k monitors 2.0 isn't useful (nor is it really 2.0 ).


Doubtful about the TB and USB upgrades.
Even if existed doubtful Apple would refresh the whole product just for those.


I was thinking more along the lines of stuff we wouldn't really notice. More "tweaks" to the hardware after the models have been in the market and issues arise.
Unless there are substantial defects causes expensive recalls the "nobody can notice" upgrades aren't really upgrades. Hence no release. If it so non noticable folks don't value it, then it is not going to change its market impact significantly.

Apple isn't going to dump minor tweaks just to mimic like there is "action" on the Mac Pro front.

If there are no major component parts upgrades then the Mac Pro's competitors aren't going to be doing substantive upgrades either. Hence, Apple's very low incentive to rush something out 'just because'.

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I think 2015 may see some minor hardware changes.
By mid 2015 there highly likely will be major CPU , chipset , and GPU updates laying on the table. ( Right now Intel and GPU vendors all are projecting that. Meteoroid might strike their chip plant so no guarrantee but things are on track right now. ) Those will be the primary drivers. Some minor tweaks would ride with those on that design cycle iteration.


I doubt Apple is going to do "same day" announcements with Intel (or a GPU vendor) but can't seriously go back into a hole where pass up obvious, substantive improvements if this new Mac Pro shows any sign of traction.
 

deconstruct60

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what do you guys think?
No. Primarily because the major components the Mac Pro is composed of aren't on a sub yearly upgrade cycle. If Intel wants to goose profits they may extend the Xeon E5 v2 lifetime on a more mature, higher yielding process another quarter or two. [ All the more so if new adoption rate on mainstream line up is slow. ]


If talking about every calendar year then perhaps after shift to Q1 '15. Even more likely if over time the GPU vendors and Intel drift more out of phase from each other with substantive improvements.


This next generation is a "one off" in part because jumping in at toward the end of a Intel tock-tick cycle with the Mac Pro. It is an odd introduction point because they are going to have to turn the crank pretty quickly to be ready for the next "tock" (microarch / socket / chipset ) shift. Apple is going to need a new I/O board ( USB 3.0 is moving down to chipset off of current I/O board) . They'll need new GPU boards.

After that though... it shouldn't be a problem to say roughly in synch with major component roll outs.
 

Luba

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I read somewhere, maybe Anand's review, that the nMP doesn't have "real" USB 3.0, and that Apple engineers had to get creative, because the E5 v2 I/O doesn't support USB 3.0? More importantly, even though it isn't "real" what are the drawbacks? Do the MacBooks which are next generation consumer CPUs have "real" USB 3.0?



This next generation is a "one off" in part because jumping in at toward the end of a Intel tock-tick cycle with the Mac Pro. It is an odd introduction point because they are going to have to turn the crank pretty quickly to be ready for the next "tock" (microarch / socket / chipset ) shift. Apple is going to need a new I/O board ( USB 3.0 is moving down to chipset off of current I/O board) . They'll need new GPU boards.

After that though... it shouldn't be a problem to say roughly in synch with major component roll outs.


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HDMI 2.0 is here, so why didn't Apple have that on the nMP?

What are missing out by not having HDMI 2.0? 2.0 would have supported 4k 60Mhz? And 2.0 would support Dual View, which is 2 views on one 4k monitor?
 

koban4max

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HDMI 2.0 requires a different physical connectivity as far as input goes to get the "dual view". That won't be a 'firmware' upgrade. Without 'Dual View' given the constraints of the current 4k monitors 2.0 isn't useful (nor is it really 2.0 ).




Even if existed doubtful Apple would refresh the whole product just for those.




Unless there are substantial defects causes expensive recalls the "nobody can notice" upgrades aren't really upgrades. Hence no release. If it so non noticable folks don't value it, then it is not going to change its market impact significantly.

Apple isn't going to dump minor tweaks just to mimic like there is "action" on the Mac Pro front.

If there are no major component parts upgrades then the Mac Pro's competitors aren't going to be doing substantive upgrades either. Hence, Apple's very low incentive to rush something out 'just because'.

----------



By mid 2015 there highly likely will be major CPU , chipset , and GPU updates laying on the table. ( Right now Intel and GPU vendors all are projecting that. Meteoroid might strike their chip plant so no guarrantee but things are on track right now. ) Those will be the primary drivers. Some minor tweaks would ride with those on that design cycle iteration.


I doubt Apple is going to do "same day" announcements with Intel (or a GPU vendor) but can't seriously go back into a hole where pass up obvious, substantive improvements if this new Mac Pro shows any sign of traction.
i thought oMP 2010-12 were minor tweaks ...welll except processor wise..
 

maflynn

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It will get refreshed with each new Xeon E5 release from Intel. We're not going to see another 3 year wait for a refresh at the very least.
I would hope so, but given their prior history (not just this prior release, before that as well) they seem to not update their MPs too often.
 

koban4max

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The point behind my original question was whether the software companies will catch up real quick to the point where nMP won't be able to handle it by 2015.
Is Apple making current mp unusable by next year?
Of course it's normal to get next gear every...4-5 years...that's fine...
but is Apple making NMP with lesser "usable" expectancy? meaning maybe current mp won't be able to handle next year products..of who knows what...fcp x.2
 

goMac

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I would think not initially. Software (Autodesk, Adobe, etc) still needs to update to utilize the new configurations (Dual GPU's) to their fullest potential.

I think 2015 may see some minor hardware changes.
That's not going to stop them from updating it. Why would it?

I think it's going to be either with the next major GPU release or the next major CPU release from Intel.
 

AidenShaw

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I read somewhere, maybe Anand's review, that the nMP doesn't have "real" USB 3.0, and that Apple engineers had to get creative, because the E5 v2 I/O doesn't support USB 3.0?
Whatever you read you have seriously misunderstood.

No Intel CPU supports USB 3.0. None. Nada. Zip.

Current consumer chipsets (more or less the "southbridge" chipsets, although with the memory and PCIe controllers on the CPU die there isn't a "north" and "south" anymore) have native USB 3.0.

The workstation C602 chipset for the Xeons doesn't have USB 3.0 support natively, so Apple is using an off-the-shelf Fresco Logic FL1100 4-port USB 3.0 Host Controller from standard PCIe lanes for USB 3.0. Even boards using the consumer chipsets with USB 3.0 support may add an off-the-shelf controller in order to support more than the two USB 3.0 channels on the chipset.

This is old hat, boring, not "creative". Intel was using NEC USB 3.0 controllers on their own motherboards during the window that the consumer chipsets didn't support it. There's nothing "creative" about adding off-the-shelf chips to a system to support features that aren't native.

And it's "real USB 3.0", whether it's on the chipset or another controller.
 
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Luba

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Thanks for clearing that up. Getting "creative" just my way of making sense of it, which I now know is not a good description of what's going on.

Whatever you read you have seriously misunderstood.

No Intel CPU supports USB 3.0. None. Nada. Zip.

Current consumer chipsets (more or less the "southbridge" chipsets, although with the memory and PCIe controllers on the CPU die there isn't a "north" and "south" anymore) have native USB 3.0.

The workstation C602 chipset for the Xeons doesn't have USB 3.0 support natively, so Apple is using an off-the-shelf Fresco Logic FL1100 4-port USB 3.0 Host Controller from standard PCIe lanes for USB 3.0. Even boards using the consumer chipsets with USB 3.0 support may add an off-the-shelf controller in order to support more than the two USB 3.0 channels on the chipset.

This is old hat, boring, not "creative". Intel was using NEC USB 3.0 controllers on their own motherboards during the window that the consumer chipsets didn't support it. There's nothing "creative" about adding off-the-shelf chips to a system to support features that aren't native.

And it's "real USB 3.0", whether it's on the chipset or another controller.
 

Rock Hound

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Dec 26, 2013
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To me, the main factors driving the refresh cycle are the Intel Xeon development roadmap and the video card development road map.

Processor performance has been fairly stagnant for a while, so unless there is a real breakthrough that is compatible with the current form factor, I wouldn't expect very much from Apple.

Video cards may be the more sensitive driver because that's where the action is right now. Based on conversations with some of my numerical modeler colleagues, the action is rapidly moving away from CPU computing to GPU computing. In other words, people are comfortable writing parallelized code to access as many CPU cores as are available, but to really increase performance, the future is technologies like OpenCL and CUDA. This makes me optimistic that major software development will proceed along this path and that the packages that can benefit from GPU coding will do so.
 

Andropov

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May 3, 2012
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I think they'll release a new model every year, which every new Xeon cycle. Apple has never (at least when talking about recent history) released a new computer with the same processor as its predecessor. Although, with GPUs quickly becoming more important, they'll probably wait to new GPUs as well.

Maybe they'll release the Mac Pro based on the GPUs refresh cycle and put pressure on Intel to release their new Xeons accordingly. Anyway, I doubt they'll let the Mac Pro untouched for as much time as they've done with the last tower-Mac Pros.
 

wheelhot

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Nov 23, 2007
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Video cards may be the more sensitive driver because that's where the action is right now. Based on conversations with some of my numerical modeler colleagues, the action is rapidly moving away from CPU computing to GPU computing. In other words, people are comfortable writing parallelized code to access as many CPU cores as are available, but to really increase performance, the future is technologies like OpenCL and CUDA. This makes me optimistic that major software development will proceed along this path and that the packages that can benefit from GPU coding will do so.
They better! As of now, very few software actually make use of the Dual FirePros found in the nMP. I want more rendering software to use OpenCL as it'll use both the CPU and GPU instead of just CPU and that it'll work on either Nvidia or AMD cards :D
 

Macsonic

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Sep 6, 2009
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In my opinion Apple will first look at things from a business viewpoint before deciding on another new release. Timing, sales performance, target market size, the type of new Xeons and GPUs that will soon be available and cost of production. Though I could be wrong, sometimes when Intel releases a new Xeon the speed difference may be incremental Maybe for 2014 Apple may not release another new Mac Pro plus they are still busy filling in and delivering the pending orders of the 2013 new Mac Pro. On the other side of the coin, might also be tough for Mac users to keep on spending $4k to $7K+ every year for a new computer specially if the current model is still adequate for one's need. :)