Thinking about nMP. Wait for new one or go Refurb?

iamMacPerson

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Jun 12, 2011
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So my rMBP has decided to go on the fritz again. This will be its 4th repair (previous repairs include 2 logic boards and 2 LCDs) and the machine isn't even a year and a half old yet. Since the MBPs have never been reliable for me, I'm thinking of ditching portable Macs altogether and getting a nMP to be used along with my oMP.

Problem is, I can't decided if I do go this route if I should get a refurb of the current model, or wait until the next one is out with (hopefully) Haswell or Broadwell Xeons and get the baseline of that. What the machine will basically be used for is FCPX prosumer video editing (plus Compressor), some light Aperture usage, etc. With this in mind, if I get a refurb current model, would it be wise to get the baseline model or something with beefier specs (Proc, video card, SSD)? I'm comfortable upgrading the machine myself as long as it's out of warranty (so I don't void it).

Please chime in! I'd love some insight on this. Thanks!
 

Sanlitun

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Sep 19, 2014
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This is the same issue I am facing with my main concern not being so much the CPU but the GPU. For example if the D700 is roughly equivalent to a 7970 then I don't feel there is a lot of value there at Apple's prices.

I don't think I would buy a new Mac Pro now, but I am considering buying a refurb with D700 if one ever comes available on the store.
 

ToroidalZeus

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Dec 8, 2009
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Honestly I don't think the CPU upgrade will mean much.

Reason I say this is because broad well is mostly for laptops. Intel put most of the focus on getting energy efficiency better and improving the integrated graphics.

Second is Apple's pricing / packages per core are awful.

IMO the biggest benefit of a refresh would be better graphic cards. But then again Apple's pricing is really steep.
 

ixxx69

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Jul 31, 2009
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Please chime in! I'd love some insight on this. Thanks!
The problem is there's no way to really even make an educated guess what Apple's schedule is with the MP. They could release an updated version next month, or this coming summer, or next fall, or...

And things get even more complicated because if there hasn't been a haswell refresh by early next fall, the more likely they'll just wait for Broadwell-EP which is rumored for Q1 '16.

I would suggest that if you need a new Mac, just go for it, with the understanding that a new model could arrive at any time between now and this time next year... that's just the way it goes these days with the Mac Pros.
 

Supermacguy

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Jan 3, 2008
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I would suggest that if you need a new Mac, just go for it, with the understanding that a new model could arrive at any time between now and this time next year... that's just the way it goes these days with the Mac Pros.
I second that idea.
 

santaliqueur

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Aug 7, 2007
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I don't think I would buy a new Mac Pro now, but I am considering buying a refurb with D700 if one ever comes available on the store.
There were several on the refurb store last week with various storage and processor options.
 

MacVibe

macrumors regular
Dec 21, 2009
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If these repairs are done through Applecare, I wouldn't be surprised if the Apple store manager offered to replace yours with a brand new one of equal or higher spec. If the manager doesn't bring it up, you could bring up the topic of not being satisfied and then the manager might make the offer. These are luxury items and my experience is that Apple service goes to great lengths to make you a satisfied customer.
 

DougTheImpaler

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Feb 28, 2006
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Central Illinois
I would certainly bring up the fact you've been through a gazillion repairs with this thing. Apple needs to make it right.

Now that the smaller Maxwell GPUs are out (i.e. GTX 960) I wouldn't be surprised to see the Mac Pro get updated with Quadro versions. AMD has been basically selling the same GPU technology for over 3 years now. Doesn't matter if you call it D500, Radeon 7970, or R9 280X, it's the same Tahiti GPU with the same configuration since the end of 2011. Once there are Quadro GM20x cards, I'd expect to see them in a 2015 Mac Pro. Drivers are getting pretty stable, so an entry-level Mac Pro with dual GM206 cards seems reasonable. That's still a point in the future, though. If you need a Mac now, you should get a Mac now, particularly if your livelihood depends on it.
 

Sanlitun

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Sep 19, 2014
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There were several on the refurb store last week with various storage and processor options.
I missed out on the 6 core D700 options last week and I suppose if one comes up again I may grab it. However I think that seeing as the D700 is not really a current GPU there is little point in buying it over the D500 as either of the choices are not really state of the art.

As of now I think the issue has become what is the best value for a headless Mac, and the $3200 stock 6 core looks best in that regard. That seems to be a reasonable price for what you get, and the more expensive models deliver ever diminishing returns especially if you think there may be updated machines this year.

For me this is about getting a great headless machine to run OS X in 4K etc. If I did have a need for a high end professional workstation I think time has passed these by and I would look elsewhere.
 
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shaunp

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Nov 5, 2010
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It depends what you need it for. As a general purpose workstation, that scales a bit higher than the iMac in terms of CPU and graphics performance, the nMP is okay.

I have a 6-core with D700's while I'm impressed that I can have a 64GB desktop in such a small package (I use the RAM for VMware, before anyone says that I can't possibly need 64GB), but I can honestly say that it's easy to hit the limits of this machine if you are looking for graphics performance. For photoshop, etc it's fine but as a gaming platform it sucks. I've also got a PC (i7 + GTX 780) and for a fraction of the price this gives me a much smoother gaming experience. This is playing the same games in Windows 8 on both machines. So if you are wanting high-end graphics performance, the D700's aren't that great.

I would wait now to see what's offered in the next version and if it doesn't meet your needs then look elsewhere. With hindsight, I should have just got a HP Z820 off eBay and packed it full of RAM, SSD's and a fast GPU. That would be good enough for my home lab, just a shame it doesn't run OS X.
 

Surrat

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Jun 20, 2014
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I would certainly bring up the fact you've been through a gazillion repairs with this thing. Apple needs to make it right.

Now that the smaller Maxwell GPUs are out (i.e. GTX 960) I wouldn't be surprised to see the Mac Pro get updated with Quadro versions. AMD has been basically selling the same GPU technology for over 3 years now. Doesn't matter if you call it D500, Radeon 7970, or R9 280X, it's the same Tahiti GPU with the same configuration since the end of 2011. Once there are Quadro GM20x cards, I'd expect to see them in a 2015 Mac Pro. Drivers are getting pretty stable, so an entry-level Mac Pro with dual GM206 cards seems reasonable. That's still a point in the future, though. If you need a Mac now, you should get a Mac now, particularly if your livelihood depends on it.
Maxwell quadro cards are already out, but I think they are based on the 750 type. The K620 and K2200 are listed as being maxwell gpu.
 

iamMacPerson

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Original poster
Jun 12, 2011
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These are luxury items and my experience is that Apple service goes to great lengths to make you a satisfied customer.
I would certainly bring up the fact you've been through a gazillion repairs with this thing. Apple needs to make it right.
Thanks everyone! Spent almost all day at the Apple Store today, but the manager OKed a deal where I would get the value of my laptop back on (two) gift cards. When I got home I pulled the trigger on a refurbished baseline nMP. I am very excited to get this machine. I ended up having about $40 left on the GC so I'll use that for AppleCare.

Should be here Friday!
 

MMcCraryNJ

macrumors 6502
Oct 18, 2012
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Thanks everyone! Spent almost all day at the Apple Store today, but the manager OKed a deal where I would get the value of my laptop back on (two) gift cards. When I got home I pulled the trigger on a refurbished baseline nMP. I am very excited to get this machine. I ended up having about $40 left on the GC so I'll use that for AppleCare.

Should be here Friday!
Congrats! Welcome to the club :)
 

MMcCraryNJ

macrumors 6502
Oct 18, 2012
265
42
Thank you! I'm gonna hold onto my oMP as well. I've always wanted the ultimate expandable Mac and now I have one. And its younger sibling.
I don't blame you! BTW, if you are looking for a 1TB SSD for the nMP, there is a seller on Amazon I'd recommend highly who is selling Apple genuine OEM SSDs at a very reasonable price. He usually lists 2 or 3 of them every couple of weeks, and they go pretty fast. It's much cheaper than buying OWC's lame excuse for a PCIe SSD, plus you get native TRIM support as well. I purchased mine last month and it was as described and works great. Even has the heatsink attached, something a lot of Ebay vendors aren't offering.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00O4CUI02/

(I apologize if this is overzealous on my part, however I see so many members discussing the OWC part on these boards and I feel the need to let as many people know about better options out there)

In any case, enjoy your new machine!
 

iamMacPerson

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Original poster
Jun 12, 2011
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(I apologize if this is overzealous on my part, however I see so many members discussing the OWC part on these boards and I feel the need to let as many people know about better options out there)

In any case, enjoy your new machine!
No that's awesome! I'll hold off for now, but I might just get a 512 when I can get some money together. That's how much space I had in my rMBP so I'll probably just SQUEEZE by with 256.

I just can't wait to get this machine in. I have been drooling over the nMP since it came out. One hell of a beautiful machine. I even checked it out in store again today and drooled. :D
 

goodcow

macrumors 6502a
Aug 4, 2007
620
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So my rMBP has decided to go on the fritz again. This will be its 4th repair (previous repairs include 2 logic boards and 2 LCDs) and the machine isn't even a year and a half old yet. Since the MBPs have never been reliable for me, I'm thinking of ditching portable Macs altogether and getting a nMP to be used along with my oMP.
That laptop needs to be replaced outright. Back in 2009 or so, my MBP went through about a half dozen different repairs, and I finally emailed sjobs@apple.com to complain. The next day, Apple Executive Customer Service called me and arranged for a brand new, higher spec laptop to be available for pickup at the local Apple Store.
 

DougTheImpaler

macrumors 6502a
Feb 28, 2006
558
49
Central Illinois
I'm glad to hear it worked out for you. I think at 4 repairs and in line for a fifth warranted the Apple Store's action. Also, enjoy the nMP. I'm kinda jealous. Just got a cMP for cheap that I'm hot-rodding with a hexacore and new video card, but those nMPs are soooooo sexy.
 

iamMacPerson

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Original poster
Jun 12, 2011
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The next day, Apple Executive Customer Service called me and arranged for a brand new, higher spec laptop to be available for pickup at the local Apple Store.
Yeah I actually emailed Tim Cook about my iPhone 5 and all the issues I had with it. ECR called me back and said there was nothing they could do but replace the phone again with a white box device. I later found this was false, and when I got my 5s all the Wi-Fi issues went away. I had 14 phone replacements. 14. Most had to do with a nasty Wi-Fi bug.

I'm glad to hear it worked out for you. I think at 4 repairs and in line for a fifth warranted the Apple Store's action. Also, enjoy the nMP. I'm kinda jealous. Just got a cMP for cheap that I'm hot-rodding with a hexacore and new video card, but those nMPs are soooooo sexy.
Thanks! The oMPs are fun to hot-rod and play around with. �� That's why I am holding on to mine. But I agree, the cylindrical design is so sexy. They should use the tag line "Brains and Beauty" for it.

Funny story: I found my oMP at a recycling center almost a year ago. It was stripped of everything but the proc tray and main board. I spent the last year rebuilding and upgrading it, and finished last month.