iMac Pro What do you think of your iMac Pro?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by pertusis1, Mar 4, 2018.

  1. pertusis1 macrumors 6502

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    #1
    I know this is a Mac Pro thread, and that a fair amount is written about the iMac Pro in the iMac forum.

    However, I am a longtime 5,1 user, and before that a dual G5, and before that a G4 (mirror doors). I am eyeing the iMac Pro as our household really needs 2 computers and our Mac mini with a 20" ACD is badly in need of updating. Really, the iMac would probably serve our needs ok, but by the time I spec it out, I am close to the discounted iMac Pro. Right now my teenage kids use my 5,1 for Logic and FCPX primarily. The 5,1 is still fine (love the MVC 7970 for FCPX), but I'd really like to get them out of my office :)

    My question is this:

    If you are a previous Mac Pro owner, and have bought an iMac Pro, I would love to hear your impressions. I have read the professional reviews, but am interested in broader comments. I figure there are a few other window-shoppers gazing jealously in wondering the same thing.

    Ah yes, and before anyone scolds me on how bad a deal the iMac Pro is, let's just assume for the purpose of this thread that I can run my own cost-benefit analysis. I'm fairly familiar with what the other options are. I'm not interested in screwing around with a hackintosh, and I've switched to PCs several times before. Not doing that again any time soon. I just want to hear impressions of owners of the iMac Pro.
     
  2. Macshroomer, Mar 5, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2018

    Macshroomer macrumors 65816

    Macshroomer

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    #2
    So far I am really loving it. I now shoot some pretty high MP cameras for work and to even be able to deal with the RAW files with any degree of professional efficiency I had to upgrade my hardware. I love my Mac Pro 5’1 too for all the reasons that others on here do but with tasks taking up to ten times as long it just does not make sense anymore.

    I am also kind over constantly keeping bugs at bay and popping the hood open to mess with the cMP like a day trader does with his 69 Mustang on weekends as a hobby. My hobby / life / job is not computers per se, it is outdoor activities that often include a digital or film camera so the faster a computer gets my tasks done, the faster I can get away from the thing.

    Many people on here just love computers a hell of a lot more than I do. It’s their passion and hobby but it is not mine. I am still torn on if I will sell my cMP or not. But either way, I am not going to go into detail about what I like about the iMac Pro, it just serves to piss off those in this section who love computers more than I do....and that would be the majority of people on here.

    My suggestion, leave these people alone and poke around the iMac sub-forum. You can even talk about the Mac Pro over there and they won’t get defensive like they do here.
     
  3. tomscott1988, Mar 5, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2018

    tomscott1988 macrumors 6502a

    tomscott1988

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    #3
    For the OP - a high end iMac would be great but if you can stretch to the iMac pro why not? Its powerful and will last longer than a mac pro replacement that we have no idea when it will be a real product.

    It depends what your plans are too, if your happy with a pro machine in a consumer package then thats half the battle.

    But consider the lifetime and the cost and it will make the decision easier.

    Macshroomer thats not necessarily the case. Similar to your post in the other thread which is now locked.

    Its not specifically sour grapes, its the fact the iMac pro isnt a replacement. I am in the same boat my 5,1 doesnt gett the job done. I have been using windows workstations for my heavy projects and I keep the mac pro around because I like mac OS. As for a workstation there are many benefits the Mac Pro offers and for many an all in one is not the answer. I for one dont want to loose the ability to make more of the machine.

    The hardware is not the issue but heavy users need more of it. The fact once its bought that's pretty much lump it or leave it sort of mentality 3 year turn around its just not a great investment.

    Im not just a photographer im a videographer and also a motion graphic designer and the iMac pro will do the job for the time being, just like the base spec Mac Pro could 09/10 but the fact is that it was capable of moving on. PCI cards are super useful in making a machine last longer. Ok TB is not a capability but USB 3 didnt exist neither did SSDs in that era and all is capable of implementing 10 years later. It wont be the case on the iMac Pro. TB4 will come along in 4 years time and all those expensive pereferals wont be able to take advantage and your stuck in the same process.

    The cost isnt an issue either if I wanted one I would go and buy one, its the fact its a pro product stuck in a consumer frame, throw away. If I am going to spend 15k on a new rig it will be upgradable. If its not I will move onto another windows workstation which is essentially what many of us need.

    Apple doesnt like the workstation, it doesn't fit their consumer practice. Im surprised they actually announced development of the Mac pro.

    The video cards in the iMac pro still arent great they are consumer cards and many of us are screaming out for quadros etc Those cards are more than the base line iMac pro.

    The difference is if you look around and see what that money can buy you in a workstation style machine it will go much further and the investment will last longer. You can have twin xeons with multiple GPUs, 10+ drives completely eliminating the need to spend thousands on enclosures. Its just stupid when the machine can house the drives, a fix to a problem that shouldn't exist in a high end workstation. Its just spending more to have a slim machine, its a workstation...

    It will never be an option for the iMac pro. If you work out the investment of the lifespan of the cMP vs your iMP I think you will understand especially if your only just retiring it. Thats 10 years not 3-5 and the Mac Pro was half the price.

    So where have all of those professionals gone? They've had no option but to buy a windows workstation because its 6 years since apple made one. The nMP was fine for audio as its quiet and video editing to an extent but for motion graphics... it was mediocre at best.

    Photography is a main stay but its not as taxing as motion and 3d projects and apple do not offer a machine for this, as a modern creative you have to be on your toes and be able to adapt and an all in one machine does not allow this its always been the Achilles heel of the iMac.

    The other thing is now that pretty much 90% of all software is multi platform its not the same issue it used to be. Both OS's have positives and negatives and really there isnt the same need to be on the mac platform as it has been left because it doesnt sell the same volumes. The fact pretty much the whole CC suite works so much faster with nvidia cards but apple will only sell ATI cards. Have you tried lightroom on a high end nvidia card vs an ATI card. Its night and day.

    If apple brought a workstation out tomorrow I would buy one but until then the iMac pro is a very capable system, its just closed, expensive and niche not what power users were looking for.
     
  4. zarf2007 macrumors regular

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    Aug 27, 2010
    Location:
    London, UK
    #4
    yes, heaven forbid that you criticise the Mac Pro gods.....
     
  5. Macshroomer, Mar 5, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2018

    Macshroomer macrumors 65816

    Macshroomer

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    #5
    It's not what *you* are looking for and I suppose that was the problem I had with the post I responded to in the other thread, you seem to be trying to speak to all power users and I don't think that serves anyone well, even you. It's broad speculation, not accuracy.

    These are not cut and dry, one size fits all power user decisions, there is tremendous nuance in how one goes about charting a course with this hardware. I find that fiscally speaking for what my workload looks like in 2018-2020, this computer makes by far the most sense. TB3 will be plenty for quite awhile as SSD is still very expensive to setup in RAID with any degree of actual storage volume so it really comes down to getting the optimal workflow for the next 3-4 years. My 4 bay USB 3 RAID cases moved over just fine to this workflow. Part of the reason for this for *me* is that I am steadily moving away from digital photography and into film based for darkroom created fine art works. I will still have a lot of work in digital jobs that I will be doing for the next 5-6 years ( longer if I choose) so I should be fine.

    That was the big thing for me, my 5,1 was no longer working in many respects when it came to new cameras. And that includes everything from being able to render thumbnails (I don't use LR as a DAM) because the OS was dated, super slow RAW export times and LRCC 7.2 got even more laggy, especially when using a Midi which is now a big part of my workflow.

    You see it as a bad investment. Since my time is more valuable than anything else, I see it as a excellent investment because it is saving me so much of that. If there was already a new modular Mac Pro out, I would have certainly considered it, but the need for new hardware now set that wheel in motion now and I suspect a number of folks are in the same boat.

    Like a lot of things in life, timing is everything and this was my timing so it's a welcome piece of new hardware that will literally pay for it self in a matter of months. That to me, is a good investment.
     
  6. anonymous161 macrumors 6502

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    Apr 15, 2003
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    Where the wind comes sweeping down the plains
    #6
    The Powermac/MacPro line was where I went to get stable, higher performing hardware. I didn't want to build a system, I just wanted a fast Mac. I never updated much as it always seemed that upgrading later was an exercise in diminishing returns. Frankly, I hated the extra cables and space needed for a tower and separate monitor. So Xeon hardware and a great 5k display (which is tough to get separate at any price) in a single package that runs quiet no matter what I throw at it? To me it was a no-brainer. Expensive as hell, yes, but Macs always have been (although it's not far off of other workstation prices and I would bet it's cheaper than a few of the old pro Macs when adjusted for inflation). For me it's a fantastic machine and exactly what I've always wanted.
     
  7. barmann macrumors 6502a

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    Location:
    Germany
    #7
    The iMac is a fantastic design - if it works for you , great .

    The downsides have been discussed to death, but if you don't mind the limitations and can live with a compromise , by all means get one .
    It's a very stylish compact computer ; slower than the competition due to ventilation issues and such , few ports and a consumer grade display , no proper upgrade path .

    And yes, please take it to the iMac forum . ;)
     
  8. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

    Staff Member

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    #8
    Mod Note
    As this thread is about the iMac Pro and we have a specific forum for the iMac and iMac Pro, I have moved it into that forum
     
  9. Guyfromtheswamp Suspended

    Guyfromtheswamp

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    Mar 5, 2018
    #9
    I'm an iMac fan as well. Recently bought a 2017 21.5 (added 2tb ssd). My ONLY concern about the iMac pro is the heat. That, combined with the fact that Apple seems more concerned about keeping the fans low and letting the heat get higher than I might prefer, makes me wonder about the longevity of the machine.
     
  10. rACed2 macrumors newbie

    rACed2

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    Feb 11, 2018
    #10
    Well I’m delighted with mine. Base model with 64 Gb RAM.
     
  11. Guyfromtheswamp Suspended

    Guyfromtheswamp

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    #11
    No doubt, I would kill for that. But would add some external ssd storage to the puny 1tb drive built in.
     
  12. rACed2 macrumors newbie

    rACed2

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    Feb 11, 2018
    #12
    I’ve got external storage SSDs and HDDs - the OS and programs fit so easily onto 1TB I even decided to put my most used samples on it as well.
     
  13. tomscott1988, Mar 6, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018

    tomscott1988 macrumors 6502a

    tomscott1988

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    UK
    #13
    Nope its not what im looking for at all and tbh its disappointing it is so niche.

    Making a machine that could take more options, like opening it up to twin processors, more than 2 graphics card options, actually being able to upgrade the ram, a twin NVME and a high capacity HDD would have opened it up to a lot more people and make it more successful in the long run. At the end of the day if you could make it more accessible but have high end options then more people would buy it, if its a success then apple will make updates more frequently.

    Its not like apple haven't been able to do this in the past, all the modern mac pros had separate risers cards. No reason at all that they couldn't have relocated the ram. It was super lazy especially in a sealed design just a joke for a professional grade machine at the price point.

    It seems like many people have jumped on it but the % of users on here are minuscule and it does not give a good representation of actual user adoption. Of corse apple dont release those figures so you will never know. In every way you look at it its an attempt to keep pro users for the short term. I highly doubt this will be a high volume product which in apple world means this will probably be the one and only variant similar to the nMP. So where does it leave the people that bought it... with no upgrade path yet again.

    Its unlikely the Mac Pro will be any different, it will be an evolution of the current nMP and will not be what a lot of power users need. I really hope not, seeing how they have put this together making it work in a 5 year old chassis doesnt fill with confidence. It should have been a new product to have worked properly. I cant see Apple making such dramatic changes to create a higher end machine.

    Cant innovate... my ass.
     
  14. Bryan Bowler macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2008
    #14
    Tom,

    Throughout many of your replies, it is evident that you don't like the design of the iMac Pro. There's nothing wrong with feeling that way since the iMac Pro does not have most of the features you value in a professional-grade computer. However, there are people out there that appreciate the elegant design of an AIO and they do not mind the limitations that come with it. For many working pros, they are quite content to use one for approximately 3 years and then make the next purchase that fits their needs.

    An iMac Pro is in fact an iMac Pro. It was never designed to fit the things you're seeking in a computer. I agree with you whole-heartedly that the 2013 Mac Pro was a terrible design and hopefully the next Mac Pro will bring about many of the design choices that you and others desire. But in the meantime, there really isn't any reason to get mad at the iMac Pro for not being designed like an expandable desktop tower. The iMac Pro was designed and engineered for a different crowd.

    Hopefully in June Apple will give us a sneak peek at the next Mac Pro. And I hope many of the choices you've mentioned are there. It would be great for Apple to have a well-designed AIO and an expandable pro machine. In the meantime though, can we lay to rest the angst against the iMac Pro? It was designed to be the most powerful AIO to date and I think on most accounts, Apple delivered.
     
  15. pier macrumors 6502a

    pier

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2009
    #15
    I agree.

    I've been arguing that the iMac Pro is a SUV for camping enthusiasts passing as a Land Rover. Sure, it's very capable, but since it cannot be customized or easily repaired/upgraded I don't see it replacing the need for a tower Mac Pro. Conceptually it's an upgraded trash can mac pro with a nice screen.
     
  16. Macshroomer macrumors 65816

    Macshroomer

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    #16
    Then don’t buy it.

    Also, why throw pro users like me under your disparaging label bus when we have work to do and needed a solution? I have work to do now, not in a year when the vaporwear Mac Pro hits the market. I also don’t have time to build a hackintosh and deal with making it a stable and productive platform, I am a professional photographer, not an obsessive computer geek.

    I just don’t get the need to go on and on and bash equipment on the internet *and* make it seem like I have made an uninformed decision or a bad investment.

    To hell with what you think or argue for, I have a life to live, time to use wisely and a spectacularly great career to uphold. For the time being, Apple has made a fantastic product for me to use and if in 3-4 years I feel it’s time to switch gears again all I have to do is spend the money, it’s not a damned organ transplant.
     
  17. anticipate macrumors 6502

    anticipate

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    #17
    I had a trashcan MP and now a 10-core iMP and I can't disagree with you, aside from the first statement. my nMP lasted me 4 years and was plenty useful for getting all manner of paid work done. The issue was it couldn't be upgraded. So I essentially upgraded it... with a new unit that has a screen. (The iMP is exactly "concepually" that... an upgraded trashcan with a screen). With eGPUs becoming a thing and Apple supporting them, that's my year 3 or 4 upgrade strategy to get more life out of the unit.

    That said, seeing as how FAST this machine is (I have the 10-core, 64GB, Vega 64 model) currently, even while editing 8K Red RAW, I cannot even see on the horizon what I'd need more speed for. Of course I will eventually need it.. but for what I do, I don't see it.

    If I get 4-5 years out of it, I will be very happy. And it's on target for doing just that. If I wanted 8+ years out of it, for sure I'd get the modular model.

    PS I think the modular Mac Pro will essentially be an iMP with slots and an external display. They didn't develop the T2 just for the iMP...
     
  18. Macshroomer, Mar 6, 2018
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018

    Macshroomer macrumors 65816

    Macshroomer

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    #18
    Yeah, like exponentially faster than any upgrade I have ever done since I first started using Apple computers in my career in 1992.

    I have the same model you do but I upped the ram to the full 128GB. I use a very robust and efficient app called Photo Mechanic to browse & edit select photos and then copy them over to a much faster work disk that is a stripe RAID of SSD's to export from RAW to jpeg or tiff using Lightroom. Usually a *big* day will be 1,000-2,000 images topping 3,000 on the absolute biggest. On my 2017 MacBook Pro it will render a 3,000 image job in less than 30 seconds, on my Mac Pro 5,1 it will render them in like 10 minutes. And when I say render I mean be able to zoom in at 100% and still swipe through the images, not just the thumbs.

    On the new iMac Pro it rendered all 3,000 instantly. So I had it tackle a much larger archive folder with some 25,000 images in it. It did it in 3 seconds....three freaking seconds! This thing is an absolute BEAST of a computer and all I really have to think about in terms of upgrades is larger / faster SSD arrays as technology and funds permit.
     
  19. SecuritySteve macrumors 6502

    SecuritySteve

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    Jul 6, 2017
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    California
    #19
    It wasn't until recently that I needed to move into heavier hardware on the mac platform. But I will say this, the iMac Pro is the most comfortable workstation that I've ever used. I would strongly recommend it to any professional doing hardcore work on macOS, as it makes any other product that Apple offers look like a snail.

    Just my opinion of course, but you asked for impressions.
     
  20. OBirder macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 13, 2015
    #20
    I can second that and I have 10 years ahead of you, but with competing products of Apple (e.g. Amiga).

    My last machine was a self build PC Tower. Individually high end components: 6 core i7, Watercooling, SSD, Nvidia GPU, Motherboard, Power Supply, Fan's. All hand picked. Since this was the newest hardware it took days with all the drivers until a system was up and running smoothly. But it sure was less costly and at the same time faster than any Apple product.
    Who talks about the time and money to set it up and which I lost during the next years when the motherboard had to be replaced, the water-cooling failed, replaced Fan's and an internal HDD. The manual update of hardware drivers especially for the Nvidia which had hiccups at the beginning. We are geeks and that's what we deal with (or others calling it we know how to handle a "Landrover"). We don't mention all the extra time and effort, we only brag about how we can upgrade our machine, we are in control and our machine is better than anything else (realistically only for a very short time).

    With all of this I was skeptical of an AOI.

    But when the iMP came, even so it carried a hefty price tag, I went for it.

    The computer was up and running faster than any other system before that. The two months with it is that this machine is beautiful, extremely quiet and fast. It's the best experience so far I ever had with a system. It does allow to work fluently even while rendering and has all 10 cores busy. Now I added a Parallel Windows session and it works great while rendering.

    I will be covered for 3 years with AppleCare. Unlike in my the past using the components not at max. performance or overclocked, I hope that it will work for years. At this time I think this is a plus and a smart move on Apple's side. So far no regrets and quite positive surprised about the performance of an AOI which I never anticipated. It seems that the negative comments are mainly from people who don't own one. Only time will tell how good the investment really was and if I will regret let's say over the next 6 years that the machine can't be upgraded.

    But as of today, I am extremely satisfied with the machine. As you mentioned it's the biggest jump from the prior machine to the iMP I ever had.
     
  21. pertusis1 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Jul 25, 2010
    Location:
    Texas
    #21
    If I'm reading the thread correctly, everyone who actually bought one seems thrilled with it for the time being. Looks like I'll probably put it on the 'to buy' list and save up... Thanks for all of the responses, and for not dragging this thread into 'I'm not buying one because...' territory.
     
  22. flimpy macrumors member

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    Dec 21, 2015
    #22
    Not a pro. Bough one as I was ready to upgrade the old iMac we had. I found the iMac Pro to be a piece of art.

    Not an Apple fan either (with all the bugs they constantly release in their iOS and OSX), but they seemed to managed to do things right with the iMac Pro... have to give them that.
     
  23. powerslave65 macrumors 6502

    powerslave65

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    Sherman Oaks CA
    #23
    Even though the 2017 i7 iMac may best the base iMac Pro in some tasks on paper, the overall experience of the iMac Pro is superior in everyway. It’s faster in many everyday tasks, makes hardly any noise which is something a fast iMac has yet to do, and in a weird way is so fast I don’t need to hurry. I feel much more relaxed using this machine than previous iMacs I’ve owned simply because many things happen more efficiently which allows less consideration of the machine’s limits and puts me closer to the creative process. It’s been on since I purchased it and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
     
  24. c0ppo macrumors 65816

    c0ppo

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    Feb 11, 2013
    #24
    I love my iMP. Easily the best mac I've used in the last 5-6 years. 0 issues. Does everything I throw at it without hiccups or any kind of problems. I would be better of with an i7, but iMac with i7 has noise issues that I simply couldn't stand.

    Now I'm using base iMP for Unity/Xcode/Windows 10 parallels + vstudio.
    And I don't turn off parallels at all, no need. Everything works like a charm, and I have yet to hear any noise from this great computer :)
     
  25. BurgDog macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2012
    #25
    I'm not a pro but really like to buy pro level equipment when I can afford to for pretty much everything I buy because pro stuff is designed to be reliable under heavy continuous use. I traded in my 2013MP for the iMac Pro and so far I am extremely pleased with my new Mac. I was happy with the old one too but wanted the 5k display and there was no easy way to get that without trading up. I got the $4000 deal from Micro Center so feel I got a real good value for what I got. Might not have been as happy at full Apple price.

    My old 2013 Mac Pro was quieter is the only complaint I have. I can hear the fans a little bit in my quiet room on the iMP when I do handbrake compresses now (1600 rpm) and they get fairly loud at 2500 rpm when running games at the same time as the compresses, which doesn't slow either strangely as handbrake slams the CPU and the games slam the GPU. Other than the slight higher noise levels I am happy because everything else is great.
     

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