Quad iMac undercuts Quad Mac Pro

Gonk42

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2008
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near Cambridge
I just priced up a quad 27inch iMac (i7) 2.8GHz with 8GB or RAM and Applecare versus a quad 2.93GHz Mac Pro with 24inch display etc.

iMac : £2,055
Mac Pro : £3,609

The specs are very close, the Mac Pro is slightly faster and has ECC memory and is more expandable but has a smaller display.

I guess Apple might drop the quad Pro if they don't reprice it.
 

J the Ninja

macrumors 68000
Jul 14, 2008
1,824
0
iMac = Lynnfield, Mac Pro = Bloomfield. Not the same processor. But yes, the MP is suffering from being out of the update loop at the moment. Unfortunately, it will be months still before Intel has the parts out to get it back up to speed.

BUT YOU CAN GET A MAGIC MOUSE WITH YOUR MAC PRO FOR $20 EXTRA!*





*Yes, really. Go look for yourself.
 

thegoldenmackid

macrumors 604
Dec 29, 2006
7,777
5
dallas, texas
But with quad coming to iMac and soon to MacBook Pro the Gulftown core increase will make sense.
iThink we are on the same page. Just because they put a similar processor in the iMac, for the time being doesn't equate to a reason as to why they would drop the price. Especially considering that it's a matter a of upgrading the specs to get the large difference.
 

Gonk42

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2008
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near Cambridge
correct. completely different market.
I wasn't suggesting that they'll drop the Mac Pro, just, perhaps, the quad version of it.

I was pricing up the i7 rather than the i5 quad which should be the same as a Xeon apart from the ECC memory option - though I may be out of date, are there new i7 varients which are closer to being i5?

They are different markets but with a 27inch IPS display and a powerful quad processor and the option to add extra drives externally it would be hard to justify spending almost double the price on the quad Mac Pro. It really just highlights how expensive the quad Mac Pro is. The octo rather less so.

PS - edit
The i7 CPU in the iMac is around £200 less than a 2.93GHz Xeon in the Mac Pro and the graphics card 4850 is less than the Mac Pros 4870 but a 27 inch display is generally much more
expensive than a 24 inch display so I think the two will balance out. I would guess that the iMac would be faster than a 2.66GHz Quad but slower than the 2.93GHz Quad but not a lot in it.
 

Inconsequential

macrumors 68000
Sep 12, 2007
1,977
1
The iMac is faster than the complete Mac Pro Quad Lineup.

3.46Ghz SINGLE CORE max speed compared to the max of 2.8 or 3.06 of the quad mac pro.

It doesn't just beat it, it smashes it.

As a Quad Core Mac Pro user I'm exceptionally annoyed.
 

BigWilly1231

macrumors newbie
Sep 21, 2009
3
0
I just got a quad MacPro last week - help me feel better here, what would the real world speed comparisons be - not all quad cores (or memory channels) are the same, right??

Mark
Im in the same boat, I just bought my Mac Pro YESTERDAY.

But I still like the mac pro better. The Versatility to have 4 HDD bays. The ability to upgrade your graphics card. ECC Ram. Ability to have at least Two screens that are bigger than 27". You would only be able to have one screen bigger than 27" on the new iMac (and glossy at that).

Ability to add Blu-Ray yourself if need be. Just writing this I made myself feel better. ;)

It's also not like the Quad-Core Mac Pro is going to be slow for you anytime soon.
 

Eldritch

macrumors newbie
May 2, 2009
8
0
..but it's still rather annoying that they sell the iMac with more ram, better screen (since the pro doesn't come with one), better graphics card and more harddrive space for $500 less.

This is the first time I'm actually disappointed with Apple. I don't care if the iMac and Pro's are not in the same market, you don't cut prices that much for similar spec'ed computers that soon.
 

gugucom

macrumors 68020
May 21, 2009
2,136
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Munich, Germany
More fodder for the theory that Apple are on their way out of the Mac Pro. Cash out strategy without much re investment to keep or expand customer base.

Certainly they are prepared to make a bit more of an effort on the iMac.
 

sidewinder

macrumors 68020
Dec 10, 2008
2,425
127
Northern California
This is the first time I'm actually disappointed with Apple. I don't care if the iMac and Pro's are not in the same market, you don't cut prices that much for similar spec'ed computers that soon.
What a bunch of whiners!

You are actually complaining that Apple is charging too little for a computer??

There really is no pleasing some people.....

S-
 

Gonk42

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2008
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near Cambridge
What a bunch of whiners!

You are actually complaining that Apple is charging too little for a computer??

There really is no pleasing some people.....

S-
The point is not that Apple are now charging too little, it is that the quad Mac Pro this year (2009) was very over-priced compared to pc based workstations and even more so when compared to consumer pc core i7 systems.

This was hidden to some extent because people were comparing pcs to Macs, though there have been lots of posts on the subject. Now there is another Apple system to compare with and the contrast is much more stark.

If I'd just paid a large premium to have an Apple system, (I haven't), I would feel cross that the premium was greatly reduced a day or so later, albeit on a different Mac.

Yes, Mac Pros are still more expandable and are probably more robust in that the screen and computer are separate and the case is larger with better cooling (I guess) but if you've got 3 year Apple care and don't want to change graphics cards and can put up with external disk drives the iMac represents a big saving.
 

Umbongo

macrumors 601
Sep 14, 2006
4,929
54
England
Yes, Mac Pros are still more expandable and are probably more robust in that the screen and computer are separate and the case is larger with better cooling (I guess) but if you've got 3 year Apple care and don't want to change graphics cards and can put up with external disk drives the iMac represents a big saving.
Exactly, completely different uses. Both systems have thier pros and cons and both are more expensive than similar windows hardware. The Mac Pro is still more powerful and the inclusion of mid range desktop quad core on the iMac is no reason to drop high end single socket Xeon workstations.
 

Gonk42

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2008
288
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near Cambridge
i7 860 vs 920

Anandtech benchmarked the i7 860 (the 2.8GHz iMac processor) and
compare it to the i7 920 (equivalent to the base quad 2.66 without ECC)

http://www.anandtech.com/cpuchipsets/showdoc.aspx?i=3641&p=1

Though the 920 has 3 memory channels to the 860s 2 the 860s increased
turbo boost seems to give it the edge in almost every bench mark. Of
course the 2.93 i7 940 will probably be faster, but not by a lot.
 

jonnysods

macrumors 603
Sep 20, 2006
6,293
3,011
There & Back Again
I kind of freaked out a little today being a early 09 Quad MP owner. I went from an older C2D iMac, and bought the MP with the reasoning that I could upgrade the gfx, slap drives in, and even boost the clock speed one day if I had the nerve to do that to my beast.

The sweats are disappearing, and I'm coming back to my senses. The MP is a better choice, and in 3 years the iMac will be stuck in the same place. At least I have a fighting chance with the MP.

I wish I had a 27 inch screen though. My goodness it's majestic. I have the 24" LED ACD and it seems pathetic now!
 

Dreamail

macrumors 6502
Jun 17, 2003
377
31
Beyond
Can you put two HDs into the iMac?
And are these HDs user replaceable?

If not, there goes your SSD raid... ;)


Also it's a bit unfair to compare brand new iMac models to the pricing structure of months old Mac Pro models.
Sure Apple could have lowered Mac Pro prices today too.

Yet I'm sure the next round of Mac Pro updates (Jan-March probably) will rectify that.
I firmly believe we will see hexacore single and dual CPU models with a base quad-core model available at prices below today's top line iMac.

Anything less would surprise me.
 

sidewinder

macrumors 68020
Dec 10, 2008
2,425
127
Northern California
The point is not that Apple are now charging too little, it is that the quad Mac Pro this year (2009) was very over-priced compared to pc based workstations and even more so when compared to consumer pc core i7 systems.
More whining....

The point is invalid because you are comparing apple to oranges.

You can't compare the cost of a closed i7 system to an expandable Xeon Nehalem system. The part costs at OEM pricing levels are vastly different.

S-
 

Gonk42

macrumors 6502
Original poster
Jan 16, 2008
288
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near Cambridge
The part costs at OEM pricing levels are vastly different.

S-
No they are not. The Xeon processor costs the same as the i7 equivalent, this
is more than the i7-860 but by about £160. Most of the other components are the same except for the power supply but again the difference would be small. The case on the Pro is larger so presumably uses more aluminium.

I am not whining as I didn't buy the quad pro because it is over priced. I find it frustrating that Apple raised their 09 prices so much, as the Pro is a nice machine (even with the lack of RAM slots). I may buy the iMac but I am not keen on the lack of expandability and the fact that if after 3 years the screen goes the whole computer is defunct. (I don't think that an iMac is a long term - greater than 3 years - investment in the same way as a Pro).

I'm just pointing out that Apple is charging a lot for expandability (the ability to add a RAID card and more internal drives and perhaps upgrade the graphics).

More importantly, potential Mac Pro quad customers may be diverted to the iMac and I wonder if this is Apple's intention. The Mac Pro is already a niche product within the Apple line up and it will become more so unless the next upgrade is major.
 

Bartman01

macrumors regular
Oct 23, 2008
168
0
Also it's a bit unfair to compare brand new iMac models to the pricing structure of months old Mac Pro models.
How so? Why is it 'unfair' to compare the pricing of a machine released today vs one released months ago. The only thing that makes it 'unfair' is that Apple has not adjusted the MacPro lineup with a speed bump or price decrease along with the market changes. It would cost them nothing in development to just bump the processors speed in the current units at the current price.