Any of you waiting for Mac Pro refresh?

Discussion in 'Apple Products' started by George Chuvalo, May 9, 2018.

  1. George Chuvalo

    George Chuvalo n00bie

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    I have always wanted a Mac Desktop, however, Apple's current offerings aren't really compelling.
    I already have an awesome monitor so iMac's aren't really desirable and my desk would get even more cluttered with an extra monitor.
    Mac Mini's aren't powerful enough for the work I do and seem somewhat outdated.
    Mac Pro's haven't been refreshed and are are not worth the price for their current specs and it might be a bit overkill for me.

    EDIT: apparently it's coming in 2019............... https://www.macworld.co.uk/news/mac/new-mac-pro-2019-3536364/
     
  2. UnknownSouljer

    UnknownSouljer [H]ardness Supreme

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    I'm not holding my breath. The Mac Pro is for the <1%. Most people that drool over them can't really afford them. I expect it will start at $4000 and go up from there. And realistically that's only for design houses or studios that can make that sort of investment.

    I was also going to post, that yes, the Mac Pro isn't going to see a refresh until 2019.
    Thankfully Apple did say that so those that were waiting either on that or deciding to buy an iMac Pro, could at least make an informed purchase decision. Which of course for the next 7 months and change there isn't another option.

    If you need a pro solution today, buy an iMac Pro (which is proven). I don't think the launch Mac Pro will be any faster than the iMac Pro (at least when considering cost). It will just allow more expansion as well as a "customizable" display. (Although you could have just as many displays on the iMac Pro). And it's unlikely that most will buy a better monitor than the 5k display in the iMac Pro (not referring to resolution, referring to display quality and color gamut, although resolution is a factor).

    The only places the Mac Pro will probably allow for greater speed in is: multiple graphics cards (AMD may launch another graphics card between now and then, but that is also not guaranteed), and possibly dual CPU. But as it is, 18 cores is enough for most. I suppose if you really need a 32 core solution, just wait? But if you can afford such a system (which likely will exceed 10k for dual 18 core CPUs), you probably could just buy an iMac Pro now, sell it, and buy a Mac Pro when that comes out.

    Expansion will more than likely be in the ability to have multiple PCI-E cards and probably some amount of SATA drives. It's unlikely that it will have m.2 expansion, instead it's more likely it will have the same sort of SSD's found in the iMac Pro, which are proprietary.

    ===

    For me, honestly, the Mac Pro will be fantastic for those that can afford it, or are really concerned about future expansion. That isn't going to affect most people, most likely a handful of owner operators.
    It probably won't even affect most studios who would probably benefit from just buying a dozen iMac Pros, and then after 3 years retiring them and buying new machines rather than upgrading them (write offs, tax incentives, depreciation, etc). In other words, most studios wouldn't really benefit from the upgradeability that a Mac Pro will have, instead just preferring a solution that will work for them out of the box (unless they need a specific PCIE card to function that can't be run off of thunderbolt.... but everything can be run through thunderbolt in the form of an external PCIE/Thunderbolt enclosure).

    Still, it's important for the Mac Pro to exist as a halo product so that Apple can be seen as a high end production machine again. They haven't been able to maintain that since around 2015, in which the 2013 Mac Pro was looking long in the tooth. It's just a shame that it has taken this long. I assume that will mean though that the Mac Pro will be well thought out and function like it should out of the gate.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2018
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  3. NamelessPFG

    NamelessPFG Limp Gawd

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    I'm certainly looking forward to it, in part because retiring the trash can means that the "cheese grater" models might actually drop in price afterward and I can pick up a MacPro5,1 on the cheap.

    It's worth noting that my fave Macs are the two I have set up beside my main PC: a Power Macintosh 9600, and a MDD FW800 Power Mac G4. They make quite nice Mac OS 9 gaming machines. (Yes, even the FW800 MDDs; there's unofficial methods to make them boot OS 9.2.2 directly.)

    Both are notable for case designs that are easy to open up and work inside, and neither of them waste my time with garbage integrated graphics or anything excessively proprietary. Better GPUs keep cropping up every few years, and they fall into obsolescence far more quickly than CPUs do.

    Apple just doesn't do that anymore, and as such, they've largely lost my interest. Then again, the changes to OS X/macOS over the years aren't endearing me, either, like they're trying to dumb down and iOS-ify it from what I've tried on newer systems.
     
  4. TeeJayHoward

    TeeJayHoward Limpness Supreme

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    Yup. I've got a 2013 Mac Pro with the D700s right now as my workstation. It's been a wonderful machine for the last 5 years. If the new Mac Pro is comparable but has replaceable graphics cards, I could see that lasting me for another five. Maybe even more. If it's another trash can, I'll have to give it a serious think. Having a 5 year old CPU is fine. 5 year old GPUs? Not so much.
     
  5. UnknownSouljer

    UnknownSouljer [H]ardness Supreme

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    Instead of buying a new Mac Pro, I would just advise you to buy an eGPU enclosure and simply use that. You can use any graphics card you want. The investment dollars will go far further there if you don't need an increase in CPU performance.

    https://egpu.io/setup-guide-external-graphics-card-mac/#tb3-enclosures

    I was trying to find the thread where people talked about their eGPU experiences specifically on the 2013 Mac Pro, but a super fast Google search didn't bring it up. Long and the short, is it works very well and you can get GPU acceleration in all your Metal apps.
    Cuda stuff and Adobe stuff is hit and miss depending on if the developer has supported eGPUs or not (it was a big deal when Black Magic finally got off their ass and got eGPU support into DaVinci Resolve). Gaming works just fine, as mostly you'll be dual booting into Windows for that, and that is all supported.

    So, buying a GPU and a $300 GPU enclosure, especially for a 2013 Mac Pro is totally worth it, and will keep it chugging for quite some time. TB2 performance loss vs TB3 isn't nearly as big as you'd think. But the obvious big advantage is how much your performance will be increased versus how much investment dollars you'll spend.
    Considering that at most you'll spend around $1100 for the box and a GPU (unless you buy a Titan or workstation card) that's only a fraction of what a new Mac Pro (when it comes out) or iMac Pro would cost you.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2018
  6. AVT

    AVT [H]ardness Supreme

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    Nowadays I don't see the use case.

    For tasks that need a GPU, it is more convenient to use an external GPU.

    For tasks that need lots of CPU power, it is more convenient to use a Linux box remotely.
     
  7. AthlonXP

    AthlonXP Pick your own.....you deserve it.

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  8. UnknownSouljer

    UnknownSouljer [H]ardness Supreme

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    Should've clicked on my link. It depends on what you mean by "best".

    If you want internal SATA so that you can install all your games in your eGPU (lets say you have more than one computer and you like to swap around, or just like the organization of having specific files in your eGPU), then the Mantiz Venus is the best option.
    If you want it to have 10Gbps of port bandwidth (as every other option is 5Gbps) then the Asus XG Station Pro is the best option. (To be clear, this isn't the speed of the TB3 connection, it's the external ports being run off the eGPU).
    If you want the absolute best bang for your buck and want it to be super tested and tried and true, then you'll probably buy an Akitio Node.
    Want it to be the highest PSU power because you have an extremely thirsty GPU? Then you'll want the Asus ROG XG Station 2.
    If you want it to power your thirsty laptop and want the highest wattage over USB-C, then it's either the Gigabyte Aorus Gaming Box or Asus ROG XG Station 2

    The long and the short, there isn't a 'best'... with anything. Everything is a series of compromises. You buy what is 'best' for you based upon your needs.

    I personally wouldn't buy the Razer... unless your only interest is aesthetics. It's overpriced, much like most of Razer's stuff. It is by far the most expensive eGPU system, without any reason. For $100 more than the Razer box (which is EMPTY), you can buy the Aorus Gaming Box WITH GTX1070. Personally it seems very obvious which is a better deal.

    ===

    EDIT: I guess I wasn't familiar with the X, my comments were towards Razer's V2. At $300, it makes it the same cost as other eGPU solutions. So I still stick to my other comments of, it depends on what features you want from your enclosure. At the $300 price point, there is still plenty of competition. And it doesn't seem to me like Razer's option stands out. One of the things to consider of course, is how good the PSU's that are inside these boxes are made. Razer doesn't have a good reputation in my mind for quality, at least in terms of longevity. So if they cut corners on the PSU, it gets a big thumbs down in my opinion.

    If there was a reviewer breaking down that once piece of information, I'd say I personally would base a big part of my purchasing decision on that. Having a Seasonic PSU versus an EVGA one would be worlds of difference. But obviously I'm not sure what OEM or other third party manufacturer is building them for the likes of Razer, as I'm certain Razer is sourcing them from somewhere else... as is Akitio and likely most if not all of the eGPU manufacturers.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2018